So, there's a bunch of fics about long touching moments shared between Olivia and Peter in the hospital, and I decided to do something different. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE those fics a whole lot! I still have an hour till comes on. Damn West Coast timezone! And I just finished writing this and got all excited, wanting to share it with you.
I was totally listening to this song the whole time I was writing this, so I figured on qouting the chorus and naming the fic after it.
"Why don't you let me be the one to love you,
Why don't you help me find a way to.
Why don't you let me be the one to love you.
You don't have to be afraid when it's right.
Why don't you?" - Why Don't You by Ingram Hill
She looked so fragile, through the glass windows in the door. So lost among the people in the room. The nurses, the friends, the agents. All come to tell her how relieved they were she was okay. Well, alive. He could see her pull the hospital blanket closer around her, clutching it. He could see it in her eyes. Vulnerability. Regret. Uneasiness. All she wanted was to be out of that bed, out from under the scrutiny of the people surrounding her. She wanted to be tough, to be an agent. But the nurse pushed her shoulder down every time she attempted to get out of the bed.
It was nearly silent in the hallway, a nurse or doctor walking by every couple minutes. His hand tentatively reached out and brushed the cold door handle. A part of him wanted to step in, to join the mass of faces. But he couldn't bring his feet to take him in. To tell her he too was relieved. That he was there, and cared enough to come see her. Peter knew that she would hate him for it too, but be expecting him. After that moment they shared at the warehouse, he knew she would be on high avoid mode. But, at the same time, she would be waiting for him to break down her walls and shove precautions out the window. It's what he did best.
But staring into the room, looking at her bruised face as she took in the visitors...he couldn't. The last few days had proved to him that was a lot more than he had thought. That scared him. He liked having control, and hated anything uncontrollable or out of hand. Most likely he got that special gene from his father. But this...what was going through his mind. The complete fear and desperation when she went missing...it was well out of hand. He hadn't expected such a strong reaction, hadn't known he was capable of it.
And when he had seen her...her face red, blood trailing down her cheek from a cut she'd somehow gotten, her left arm hanging loosely at her side. Looking up at him with wide eyes full of fear, confusion, and surprisingly determination. She didn't run away from them in fear, didn't break down into tears. She stayed crouched by the cold body of some man. No, it was Peter who had broke. It was Peter who had rushed over, crashing to his knees in front of her and pulling her to him. It was Peter who had buried his face in her hair, his arms tight around her, while she tried to hide the pain that caused her. She had merely hugged him back, telling him over and over again that she was okay. I'm okay, Peter, I'm okay. Everything is fine, I'm okay, Peter.
Still, he felt like such a wuss, standing in the hallway at the hospital, all by himself while everyone he knew was in there with her. Why couldn't he bring himself to go in? Why did he have to stare through the window? Why was he so afraid? Was it at how real it all seemed lately? Everyday that slipped by while they were looking for her, was another day she could have been dead. Another night he spent sleepless, tossing and turning wondering if she still breathing. It was just too much.
He ran from those things. Just when things start getting a little too real and emotional, he took off. Sometimes without a second glance. It was better that way, he told himself. And walking into that room would be admitting that he was in too deep. That there was no turning back and he was accepting this. The thought suffocated him, made his whole body sore and tired. Never had he imagined it would be this hard to leave. It was so simple before...
But maybe he was already in too deep and just didn't realize it. Maybe he was just fooling himself into thinking he could still leave.
Her eyes moved from Charlie, and over to look at Peter outside the window. His breath caught, and he felt his face growing hot. But, keeping his cool, he nodded slowly at her. Her face was blank as she studied him, the nurse obscuring their stare for a moment. That's when it dawned on him. He didn't want to leave. The thought scared him more than if he couldn't.
Even though they kept talking to her, she didn't tear her eyes away from him. Peter began to feel self conscious under her gaze. It's like she was reading him, when it should be the other way around. Like she knew what he had just discovered. The thought unnerved him and he took a step back, away from the window, but he could still see her. She gave him a questioning glare, and he knew she was wondering why he wasn't in there.
All he could do was shake his head solemnly, and walk away from the door. It surprised him how guilty he felt for leaving her in that room, looking so alone with all those people. But he couldn't take it anymore. He had to get out of this God forsaken hospital. Had to get away from the thoughts that were clouding his mind, causing him to panic. Stopping at the front desk to ask the nurse how long Olivia would be confined to the hospital, just a week at most, he was on his way out the door.
The two days later, when he was sure no one was there with her, he returned. Again, he only got as far as the door. She was inside the dimly lit room, face nuzzled into the pillow as she slept. So, he rested his forehead against the cool glass of the door window and closed his eyes. "Dammit Peter...get a hold of yourself!" He growled under his breath. It was uncertain to him how long he stayed like that, seconds, minutes. Taking a deep breath and releasing a sigh, he looked up to see her watching him.
Her eyes were dark against the shadows, and her face was expressionless. But God, her stare was hard and intense. She was trying to understand him, to break into his thoughts. Looking down, he watched his hand grasp the door handle. His eyes moved to look at her, and she looked prepared to sit up as soon as he opened the door. But his hand froze and he couldn't pull it open. Her lips parted, like she was about to say something when a man spoke by Peter.
Instantly, he let go of the door handle and jumped back. "Peter," Charlie greeted, his eyes quickly glancing over him. Peter suddenly realized he probably didn't look in the best of shape, although he had been really trying since they found her. "You going to go see her?"
Peering through the window, Peter noticed she had closed her eyes again, no doubt disappointed in him. "I was just leaving." Peter answered, shaking his head. He moved to step around Charlie, when he spoke again.
"She's been trying to act sly about it, but she's been asking about you." His voice sounded pained and Peter studied him in return. Of course, Peter concluded. Olivia was Charlie's friend and he cared about her as much as Peter. And if Peter was causing Olivia hurt or discomfort, Charlie was going to feel it's his responsibility to find out why. "She won't forget it, you know."
Peter nodded slowly, his head hanging to look at the floor. "I know." He answered.
"You're going to have to go in and see her some time." Charlie warned him, with a surprising amount of sympathy in his voice.
"I know," Peter answered again. Not giving Charlie a second glance, he pushed past him and down the hall. He didn't need a guilt trip from that guy right now. He felt bad as it was. He heard as Olivia's door opened and closed, and he swallowed. He knew. The dread at having to walk through the doors was overwhelming. It shouldn't be this way. He should have been the first one in there. Should be the one to fall asleep in the chair by her bed, holding her hand in his. He should be smiling and cheerful, and let her know he was okay.
How many more people was he going to let down? It infuriated him. He couldn't even do this simple thing, when it seemed like the most important. It was just a door, he could open it. He could talk to her. Tell her jokes and stories and get her to laugh and roll her eyes. He wanted to so bad...but there was an invisible barrier around her, and he was too afraid to even tempt it.
No, instead he whispered curses under his breath and mentally kicked himself. Instead, he tried to ease his troubled mind. Instead he tried to convince himself he didn't like her so much that it would disturb him so much to see her all alone and small in that bed. That he was too afraid to talk to her. That it all meant more than what it seemed, or ever thought it would.
You're just freaking out because she nearly died. Peter promised himself. Who was he kidding? Denial never got him anywhere. You're just freaking out because you care about her a lot, and you're realizing this. You care about her a lot more than originally planned. There was a plan? And much did he actually care about her?
That night he was so exhausted he fell asleep as soon as his head hit the pillow. Waking up, he vaguely remembered his dream. Something about her hospital door and a lot, lot, of running. Today's the day, he told himself as he headed towards the hospital. He was going to talk to her today. Every step he took echoed down the long hallway and the closer he got, the more unsure he was. One second. It would only take him one second for him to change his mind and turn around, getting the hell out of Boston.
But before he could, he was already at her door. She was sleeping again, her left arm in a conviently bulky looking cast, was resting on her stomach. He face was turned away from him, but he could see the bandage over her cheek concealing that ugly cut. Her gown had been push, probably from restless sleeping, exposing her shoulder which was so many shades of blue that Peter cringed.
For what seemed like the millionth time he hand found the door handle, but only rested on it. Sighing, he closed his eyes and pulled on it. Amazed that the door had opened for him, instead of being bolted to the wall like he had irrationally feared, he stood there for a moment. Suddenly she looked a lot clearer and he could see the white bandage around her right wrist, a wound from struggling against the restraints. Hesitantly he walked over to her bed and shoved his hand sin his pockets. Oh how badly he wished to reach out and touch her, but he told himself not to. Gazing at his feet, he didn't notice her eyes watching him.
"Hey," Her voiced sounded hoarse and tried.
His eyes instantly snapped to look at her. She was staring at him, although her eyes looked amused. A smile slowly spread across his face. "Hey."
So...how was I?