I don't know what I've done
Or if I like what I've begun
But something told me to run
And honey you know me it's all or none

Meredith sat alone at the bar at Joe's staring into the empty shot glass. She knew that she should stop. She was a doctor. She knew the damage that tequila could do night after night. She knew that if she kept going she would do irreversible damage to her liver, not to mention the rest of her anatomy. She wished that she cared about how much she was abusing herself.

There were sounds in my head
Little voices whispering
That I should go and this should end
Oh and I found myself listening

Her eyes filled with tears as she thought back to the confrontation a week ago. It had all started after she awoke to find herself in his strong, gentle arms. It felt so good. Too good.

"I have to go," she stammered, jumping out of Derek's bed and searching frantically for her clothes. Derek didn't say anything. He clenched his jaw angrily and stared at the ceiling. "Where's my shirt?" Meredith asked.

"Is this how it's going to be forever?" Derek asked sternly. Meredith didn't reply. She kept looking for her missing shirt. Derek sat up and caught her eyes with his. "I can't live like this," he said with a slight tremor in his voice. I've given you your space. I know that you have problems but I'm lonely, Mer. I'm so lonely. I need something and I don't know if you can give it to me. I need to know if you can, otherwise…" his voice drifted off. Meredith felt sick to her stomach. She'd known that this moment would come. She wanted desperately to crawl back into bed with Derek and give him the emotional intimacy that he was hungry for. She wanted to make him feel good, to make him feel loved and adored; to feel the way that she secretly wanted to feel. To feel the way she would never let anybody make her feel.

"I'm sorry…" she stammered.

"I love you," Derek said. Meredith wanted to say it back so badly.

"I know," was all that she could muster. Her heart broke as she saw Derek's eyes fill with tears.

'Cos I don't know who I am, who I am without you
All I know is that I should
And I don't know if I could stand another hand upon you
All I know is that I should
'Cos she will love you more than I could
She who dares to stand where I stood

Meredith stubbornly wiped a defiant tear away as it hit her cheek. The sounds of the crowded bar were silenced by the emotions ripping through her like a hurricane hell bent on destruction. Her mind again drifted back to Derek's trailer a week ago.

"I can't live like this anymore, Meredith. If I can't have all of you then…"

Meredith nodded, looking at the ground, desperately trying to hide how she really felt. "If you just say the words… "Derek said hopefully. Meredith took a deep breath. She couldn't say anything.

"I should go," she finally stammered. "Maybe you should start dating if that's what you want." She turned her back on him and left him standing alone in his trailer.

Meredith returned to the present with a jolt when she heard a familiar laugh behind her. She spun her head around to see Derek with a female companion. Meredith studied the face of the woman, trying to figure out where she knew her from. She knew that she was from the hospital but couldn't place her specifically. She sighed and turned back to her empty shot glass.

"He's moved on?" Joe asked from behind the bar, giving Meredith a sympathetic look.

"Like I care," Meredith said bitterly in a tone that Joe has heard many times before.

"Another tequila to take the edge off?" he asked knowingly. Meredith nodded. "This one's on the house," Joe said as he poured her another tequila shot.

I thought love was black and white
That it was wrong or it was right
But you ain't leaving without a fight
And I think I am just as torn inside

Meredith rested her head on the bar and closed her eyes. She could hear her mother's words playing over and over in her head.

'I raised you to be an extraordinary human being so imagine my disappointment when I wake up after five years and discover that you're no more than ordinary!' Meredith squeezed her eyes shut tight and tried to get her mother's voice out of her head. Instead she saw her father.

'I came here to tell you you're not wanted… She trusted you! She came to you for help, and you killed her. You did. You killed my wife. You took her from me… I don't want to see you. I don't want to hear from you, and I don't want you any where near her funeral. Do you understand me?' Her father's words were broken by laughter from a table across the room. It was Derek and his date. She thought back to what Derek had said to her months earlier.

'I can't leave you. But you're constantly leaving me.' Five months down the track and he had left. She'd forced him to leave because she couldn't accept his love. How could she when she had been hurt by the people who were supposed to show her unconditional love? Meredith ordered another shot in the hope that after it hit her she would feel less hollow and maybe more deserving of happiness.

And I won't be far from where you are if ever you should call
You meant more to me than anyone I ever loved at all
But you taught me how to trust myself and so I say to you
This is what I have to do

"Here's your chance," Joe said as Meredith stared into space.

"What?" she asked vaguely. Joe pointed over her shoulder. Meredith turned around and saw Derek and his date about to leave. For a second their eyes met. Derek looked at her longingly, the way he always did. Meredith instinctively turned her head away.

"What've you got to lose?" Joe asked.

"Nothing," Meredith said miserably. "Get me another one of those she said, pointing to a bottle of tequila." Joe shook his head.

"Get out of here," he said.

"Excuse me?" Meredith asked.

"You heard me, go!" Joe insisted.

"Fine," Meredith replied. She picked up her coat and walked out of the bar. She looked around and saw no trace of Derek. She didn't know whether to feel disappointed or relieved. With a sigh, Meredith started the walk back to her lonely house. As she turned the corner she nearly ran directly into Derek who was returning to the bar.
"Hey! I was just heading back to Joe's," he said with a slight smile.

"What about your date?" Meredith asked. What more could I lose? She asked herself. "Because," Meredith took a deep breath and decided to go for it before he could answer. "You should pick me."

"What?" Derek asked, surprised.

"Pick me, choose me, love me." Derek grinned.

"I was about to tell you that the date didn't work out."

"What happened?" Meredith asked.

"She wasn't you." Meredith let Derek take her in his arms and hold her. She felt herself starting to relax for the first time since she could remember.

"You're not pulling away," Derek said, pleased and surprised.

"I know," Meredith whispered.

"Do you want me to let you go?" he asked.