Title: Collide

Rating: T, just to be safe.

Disclaimer: Chuck doesn't belong to me. "Collide" is sung by Howie Day.

A/N: This is part of a series of one-shot song-fics. If you have any song suggestions, let me know. I'm trying to do one story from Chuck's perspective, one from Sarah's, and then alternate. Currently, I've got more songs for Chuck's POV than for Sarah's.

Also, I have a couple more ideas in the works, so hopefully I'll get those out soon. Thanks to the people who reviewed Photos and Favors. I'm glad you liked it! Writing Morgan was fun, and I feel like there should be more Sarah/Morgan interaction in the series.

The dawn is breaking

A light shining through

You're barely waking

And I'm tangled up in you, yeah

After they spend their first night together, the first thing he registers when he wakes up, even before he opens his eyes, is the feel of her skin against his. She's a curled up into a ball of warmth against him, and he gently pulls her closer to him. She doesn't wake, merely repositions herself unconsciously, burying her head deeper into his shoulder. His smiles as her soft hair tickles his bare chest. Her scent fills his nostrils, and he breathes it in deeply, willing his brain to memorize every nuance of that smell that is uniquely hers – grapefruit, and lavender, and . . . Sarah.

I'm open, you're closed

Where I follow, you'll go

I worry I won't see your face

Light up again

Reluctantly, he opens his eyes, not wanting to lose the magic of the moment. But with the dim early morning sunlight streaming through the blinds like that, he can't take his eyes off of her, and he knows he's ten times deeper in this than he was just a split second before. The clock on the bedside table behind her glares at him, the numbers red and angry: 6:38. In his fragile state, he believes it's a reminder of their mistake, their complete and utter lack of judgment. Unsure of how much time they have left, he uses dawn's light to study every feature, every curve of her face.

They can't keep this a secret forever. He'd be a fool to believe that they could. Someone will find out, and someone will care, and someone will tear them apart. But if he can't see her face again, at least he'll have a mental picture of it. He'll be able to remember how her eyes sparkle when he says her name, how her nostrils flare when she's angry, how her mouth tightens when she's trying to hold in her laughter. And that smile. He needs that smile to light up his world.

Even the best fall down sometime

Even the wrong words seem to rhyme

Out of the doubt that fills my mind

I somehow find

You and I


He's not sure how it happens, but suddenly they're on her bed tangled up in each other, and instead of yelling at him for the horrible mistake they're about to make, she's giving him permission with each savory kiss. Except it's never just a simple kiss with Sarah. It's always more like a collision. It's a passionate, overwhelming, neither-side's-walking-away-without-any-damages kind of encounter. And truth be told, he'd have it no other way.

I'm quiet, you know

You make a first impression

But I've found I'm scared to know

I'm always on your mind

"Sarah? What are you doing here?" he asks as she appears in the frame of his bedroom window.

"I wanted to make sure you were all right," she replies calmly, with the smallest of quavers audible in her voice.

He grins. It must be the eighth time she's checked on him since he got out of the hospital. They'd been on a mission, and a bullet had grazed his leg. Nothing serious, but he had to get it bandaged up. She had taken him to the emergency room, stuck around until he was all taken care of, driven him home, made up an excuse to stay with him for as long as possible, and called him on the way back to her apartment to make sure he didn't need anything. She's checked in every half-hour since then. Now, it's almost midnight and, instead of getting the rest she needs, she's sitting on his window sill and asking him how he is.

She knows he's fine.

It's in that moment that he realizes just how much of her thoughts he occupies.

Even the best fall down sometime

Even the stars refuse to shine

Out of the back you fall in time

I somehow find

You and I


He knows she's done this for years now, and that the job really has hardened her somewhat, but he wishes she would stop acting for one minute and let him comfort her. Their mission the night before had gone wrong somehow, and the man they thought had been the bad guy had been killed. Too late, they found out he hadn't been the bad guy at all. She pretends that it doesn't affect her, but he notices that her step has lost its spring, and that the sparkle in her eyes has dimmed.

She pretends, and he can't figure out if it's for his sake or for her own. She's the strong one, he's not arguing with that, but he wants to show her that he can take care of her when she needs to be taken care of, however infrequently that may be. So, despite the fact that it's against all his inner warnings, he shows up at her door unannounced, hoping against all hope that she won't turn him away.

But she doesn't.

When she opens the door, he notices immediately that her eyes are red from crying. Without a word, he gathers her into his arms, winding one arm around her waist and cradling her head with his free hand. She leans into him, sobbing faintly. He strokes her hair, whispers to her, gently kisses her temple. He knows she must hate herself for breaking like this, but right now, the foremost thought in his mind is how right she feels in his embrace.

Don't stop here

I lost my place

I'm close behind

Lying next to her, their chests rising and falling in unison, he's terrified that he's lost her already. Since they met, he's felt like they've been moving at different speeds. Even if the agency doesn't reassign her, even if it doesn't lock him up for the rest of his life, he still can't stop the sinking feeling that they've had their one night, their one moment when they were finally moving at the same speed, in the same direction. And now they've spent that incautiously.

Even the best fall down sometime

Even the wrong words seem to rhyme

Out of the doubt that fills your mind

You finally find

You and I


She finally stirs beside him, and wakes with a smile on her face.

"'Morning," she greets him, her voice adorably gravelly.

She instinctively wraps her arms more tightly around his waist, and tilts her head toward his. His lips crash into hers, a stunning supernova in a faint galaxy.

You finally find

You and I