Category: romance, angst, missing-scene
Summary: something changed and they know it
Season/Sequel: season 2, sequel to Changes
Spoilers: The Lost Boys (2-11), The Hive (2-12)
Archives: my website, Command Dynamics, others ask please
Author's note: Sorry for the delay but first my muse seemed to have gone in vacation and then I had troubles with my computer. Thankfully, everything's back to normal. Once again, thanks to those who reviewed the first part and to my wonderful beta who I kept waiting too, Jaclyn.
Back in his room, John sat heavily on his bed, his mind full of questions. He didn't understand why Elizabeth didn't want to talk to him. Surely, what was in her mind was important enough to reflect in her eyes, but still she didn't want to tell him. He felt that something had changed in their relationship during the time he was away; he simply couldn't put his finger on it. She seemed to distance herself from him, though he was convinced she restrained herself when he arrived with the rest of his team.
Sighing, he began to shrug off his clothes, desperately wanting to take a shower. He let the hot water soothe his sore muscles; he hadn't taken a shower since he left Atlantis and felt like he could stay under the spray for hours. He dismissed this tempting idea when his tiredness took over, making him yawn. Turning the tap off, he grabbed a towel and began to dry himself.
At the same moment he returned to his bedroom, the door to his quarters opened and Elizabeth entered. She stopped dead in her tracks when she saw John with just a towel wrapped around his hips and another on his hair, drying it. He didn't see her immediately because of the towel before his eyes. He finally dropped the towel on his bed and saw Elizabeth, standing there like she was frozen in time.
"I'm… er… I'll come back," she told him turning on her heels.
"Elizabeth, wait please. I'm going to dress in the bathroom and then we'll talk."
"I should probably let you go to bed. It's late and you look like you need a good night sleep. I'll see you tomorrow."
"Elizabeth…," he sighed, grabbing her wrist. "I think we really need to talk and the sooner, the better. Sit down, it won't take me long."
While speaking, he guided her towards his bed and made her sit down. He then took some clothes and went to the bathroom.
Elizabeth knew that she still had time to go back to her quarters but something held her back. When she saw him standing there, with droplets sliding down his torso, she knew she was totally lost into him, though he didn't know it. She didn't really know what she was doing here; she was on her way to her own quarters and she just stopped in front of his door. Knowing she had hurt him on the balcony, she had knocked on the door to tell him she was sorry. When he didn't answer, a part of her mind told her to go to her quarters while the other part wanted to enter. She knew this last part had won when her hand grazed the door opener. And there he was, still wet from the shower. She couldn't suppress a small smile when she remembered that her heart had missed a beat when she saw him.
"It's good to see you smiling," John said from the bathroom door.
"I'm sorry for having intruded in your quarters, I shouldn't have…"
"Stop!" he said, raising a hand. "It's my fault, I should have locked the door. Did you need something?"
"I just wanted to apologize for what happened earlier on the balcony. I know you wanted to help me, but it's something I need to sort out myself."
"Is that the reason why you seem to be distant?"
"Yes," she admitted in a breath.
"Did I… Did I do something?"
"No!" she replied vehemently.
"So, what is it, Elizabeth?"
She lowered her head, knowing he could easily read in her eyes. She felt him get closer and he lifted her head, locking her gaze with his. She knew she should leave or at least do something, anything but she couldn't. She just stayed there and kept looking in his eyes.
"It has to do with me, right?" he whispered.
She didn't need to answer this question, he already knew it. He dropped the hand he still had under her chin and backed away. When he turned away from her, she knew she had to explain herself; she couldn't let him think he had done something wrong.
"John…," she began before he interrupted her.
"You should go. I'm tired and I could use some sleep."
"Just listen to me, John."
"Can't we talk about it tomorrow?" he sighed.
"You're the one who wanted to talk, earlier."
"And should I remind you that you didn't want to talk at that point?"
"Maybe, I just realized that I needed to talk to you. John, please…," she begged, hoping he would let her speak but also dreading this moment.
"Ok," he finally said, sitting on his bed. "I'm listening."
Elizabeth began pacing, taking deep breaths. She didn't know if anyone of them were ready for what she was about to say but she didn't have much choice. She didn't want him to think that he was the one at fault here. Taking one last deep breath, she turned to face him.
"You're right; something is preoccupying me, something that has to do with you. It's not a bad thing," she quickly added when she saw him tense at her words, "it's just hard to admit. When you and your team were missing, I realized something… You're a very dear friend to me John. You're important to me. The truth is… I think I love you."
There, she said it. She tried to watch John's face but he didn't seem to react to what she just said; his eyes were fixed on the floor. A little disappointed, she turned away from him and walked to the door. Just as she reached it, John took her hand and his fingers linked with hers. He tugged on her hand and she reluctantly faced him, lowering her head in the process.
"Look at me," he whispered gently, lifting her head with his free hand when she didn't do it. "I think I feel the same way about you."
He slowly lowered his head on hers and grazed her lips with his own. She didn't respond at first but then she deepened the kiss, opening her mouth for him. The kiss was sweet but passionate at the same time and it left them both breathless when they broke it off. John rested his forehead against her, their gazes locked. One of his hands rested on her hips while the other caressed her cheeks.
"John…," she attempted before he shushed her.
"We can make it work," he simply said, trying to calm down her fears.
"Are you sure?"
"Yes. At least, I'll try my best."
Elizabeth smiled genuinely at him before claiming his lips once more.
"Would you stay tonight? Just to sleep, nothing more, I swear. I just want to hold you."
She didn't answer him; she just got undressed until all that was left was her underwear. He took care of his shirt and pants and they lay down on the bed, facing each other. With a few more light kisses, she came closer in his arms and they closed their eyes, sighing contently. They were right where they should be.
I know I'm hopelessly romantic, so sue me!
And nope, there would be no sequel.