1Disclaimer: This fic contains spoilers. I do not own any of the characters used in this fic. I merely borrow from the master (i.e. Tom Fontana).

Gloria looked at the clock above her desk, 12:15 a.m., Cyril had been dead for fifteen minutes. Poor Cyril. So sweet, so childlike. It was hard for her to believe that he had once been a man, mentally as well as physically.

Ryan had never talked about Cyril as he had been before his injury. Maybe he would if she asked, but she never had. She wondered what kind of man he had been. She knew he and Ryan had been in a gang together, but that was all she knew of Cyril O'Reily before his accident. Perhaps he had been a man like Ryan, so cool and confident, so strong and ready. Was he as charming as Ryan? She smiled then, no one could be as charming as Ryan. It was so strange to try and think of Cyril as a man, for she had only known him as a child. A beautiful, frightened child.

She could not hate him for what he had done. She had tried, but it was in vain. And now he was dead, and she found herself grieving for him. Her heart ached as she thought of what Ryan must be feeling right now. She wanted to be there for him, she wanted to comfort him, she wanted to be close to him. She always wanted to be close to him, but now more than ever. She loved him, and now was the time to show it.

She called Tim and asked him to send Ryan to the ward. He told her that he was in the gym, walking the maze. She was surprised that she didn't have to fight for the information. Maybe Tim understood how badly she needed this, how badly she needed Ryan. Maybe he was just tired of fighting the inevitable.

Gloria tried to think of what to say as she walked to the gym. As she got closer she started to panic a bit. What if Ryan didn't want to see her? What if he just wanted to be alone? What if losing Cyril meant losing all that was good inside him? What made him able to love her. She realized how much she wanted Ryan to want her. How much she needed him to need her. It would break her if he sent her away.

She took a deep breath as she walked into the gym. She had never seen Ryan as he looked then. He looked like a lost little boy. He just stared as she approached him, not moving. She placed her hands on his face, that beautiful face. He made no move to touch her, he just looked into her eyes as she caressed his face. She prayed a silent prayer that this had not been a mistake, that she was right in coming here.

She kissed him then. She felt her own eyes overflow as she tasted his tears on her mouth. She felt her heart overflow as she felt him kiss her back. This is what she had been hoping for, this is what she had been waiting for. She never imagined it could be like this, and yet she always knew it would be. He loved her and she loved him, they should be together like this. She pulled away and looked into those green eyes. He lifted his hand and placed it against her cheek. She pressed it to her mouth, her eyes never leaving his.

She wanted to be closer, she wanted to be as close as possible. She could never be close enough. "Do you want to go somewhere with me?" She couldn't believe how intense his gaze was. He nodded, still not saying a word.

She explained to the guard that she was taking him to the ward, he needed to rest away from Em city. She didn't like having to lie, especially since rest was the last thing she had in mind. But she had lied for Ryan many times before, and she knew that she would many times to come.

The ward was blessedly empty for once. She led him into the private examination room and closed the door behind them. She remembered standing here when Ryan asked her to help him and Cyril escape. Maybe she had been wrong to refuse. Maybe she should have said yes. But it didn't matter now, she had made her choices, they all had.

She had no idea what was going through Ryan's mind right now. She had never seen him so silent, so still. He was always so vibrant, seeming to radiate brilliant energy. She could only hope that the Ryan she adored would return eventually, at least in part. She wanted to bring him back to her, she wanted him to want to come back for her.

He smiled at her, she thought her heart would burst out of her chest. She could have sworn that she saw a shadow of that old fire cross his face, but she couldn't be sure.

"So, what do we do now?"

Gloria smiled, it was a good question. She wasn't sure what Ryan wanted from her right now. She wanted to comfort him, for him to find comfort in her, whatever that meant. She wanted him, all of him, she had been waiting for too long. A feeling of guilt washed over her. Cyril had been dead less than an hour, and all she could think about was making love with Ryan in her hospital ward. Wether Ryan was ready for that right now she didn't know. But she was. She had been ready for a long time. But whatever he asked of her was what she would give. Every part of her already belonged to him, it was just a matter of him staking his claim.

She walked to him and took his hands in hers. "I just want to be near you, Ryan." He looked at her, long and deep. She thought she could see the heat in his eyes, or was it only a reflection of her own?