Giving in

"I told everyone. That I lied."

The words ringed in his ears. So. The truth was out. But somehow, he wasn't sure if he was relieved or not... He'd been getting scared. He'd laid awake at night thinking about her, but he hadn't given in yet. But he thought he was going to.

Part of him hated Darcy for all of it. It wasn't fair, as she was traumatized and 17 and insane so he could hardly call her accountable for what she was doing – but he was responsible for what he was feeling. He didn't want to be falling for his traumatized and 17 and insane student – but it sort of happened without him planning it. It crept up on him, and one day, suddenly; bam; he was in love with Darcy.

He tried denying it. When she made her moves he walked away, don't give in; she is traumatized and 17 and insane. But his defenses were wearing down – sometimes, when she made her move he'd just stand there. Not do anything, but just stand there and enjoy it and he knew he was making it worse. Because every time he just let her do what she wanted, just for a second, he knew the next time he pushed her away the fallout would be ten times worse. It made him want to give in for an actually selfless reason; he was so scared for her, of what she might do to herself next time he pushed her away. But he couldn't give in, so in some ways the suspension was a relief, so he literally couldn't give in, it was physically impossible, he wasn't meant to see her.

Except she was right there. Oops.

"Did you tell them why?" he asked. She had to tell the reason; not just for him, for everything. It was her life, people had to know, so they could help her... he couldn't be her confidante anymore. Not only because of how close he was to giving in, but, well, who would let him talk to her alone after all this? But she needed someone's help, she was traumatized, 17 and insane, they couldn't just abandon her.

She shook her head. "But, I told the truth, so it's going to be okay now?" Snake looked her squarely, sternly in the eyes, yet he felt his heart break for her. In spite of the horrifying thing that had happened to her, she still had some of that innocence and naivety... the contrast between what little of that she had left and how broken she was made it all the more horrible – he wanted to sweep her into his arms and carry her off to some place where she would never hurt again, where she could be as innocent and naive as she wanted.

He took her by the arm, and led her to a place in the garden, between bushes – he's not sure why, it definitely wouldn't look good, but he's not going to do anything he shouldn't. He can't; she's traumatized and 17 and insane, he's not going to take advantage of her. "Darcy," he says, "I'm not sure you quite grasp what you've done," tears started to form in her eyes, and he forced himself to ignore them – because if he tried to comfort her, he knew he wouldn't be able to stop himself doing something wrong. "Sometimes girls say things, and take them back because their scared. So, even though we both know you lied..." he trails off. He felt so guilty, since he definitely had wanted to do something... But he he couldn't; she was traumatized and 17 and insane. Even then, he was paying far to much attention to how close the bushes were pushing them and why did he drag her here anyway?

Darcy was trying to contain her tears, but failing miserably – she was obviously trying to put up some kind of brave face. "You must hate me," she said, he head looking firmly down. This was to much; he couldn't help himself.

Slowly, he reached out with gentle hand and lifted her chin up with one finger. "I don't hate you," and that statement was enough. He really couldn't resist her anymore. His finger lingered beneath her chin and her tears started to fall less freely. They moved closer together, slowly, achingly slowly. Their lips met. It was soft and beautiful and she tasted of blueberries, he noted. She ran a hand through what little hair he had left and his mind was screaming at him, no no no! He should not be doing this. She was traumatized and 17 and insane.

But he was hardly the pinnacle of mental stability.