Title: Double Vision

Author: Slipstream (LJ: slipstream_chan)

Summary: He needs the idea of her more than anything, except for those times when he needs something else entirely.

Spoilers: 5.24, Both Sides Now


When he climbs back into the car she's already wiggled her way out of the back and is buckling herself into the passenger seat.

"Crowded back there." She smoothes down her skirt. "If this doesn't work were going to have to get a car with a bigger back seat."

"You didn't have to come," he points out and turns the key in the ignition.

"Says you." She smiles, a coy smirk that promises mischief, and flicks her eyes up towards the somber slate building. "Last chance to tell him the truth. Could be fun. Bet you his twin fantasies put yours to shame."

He shifts out of park and pulls away from the curb, not once looking back. The Volvo is quiet, the hum of the engine drowned out by the whirr of tires on wet pavement and echo of things left behind. "He has to do this."

"Don't you feel a little bit hypocritical?"

He watches her in the mirrors, the way she crosses and uncrosses her long white legs, the way her blonde hair slips from her shoulder and falls across her face when she cocks her head forward and to one side. God, he thought he'd lost this for good.

"Not really. His delusions are rooted in drug addiction and years of untreated depression. I made you up on purpose."

"And that makes all the difference." She sighs. "I don't know why I expected otherwise. You've always liked to believe that things are better than they are."

"There are worse ways to cope."

"Gee," she deadpans. "How romantic."

"I need you." But that's only half of the truth. He needs the idea of her more than anything, except for those times when he needs something else entirely.

She understands.

"C'mon," she growls, her voice shifting down to a rough baritone. The hand that reaches across the center divider to slide suggestively up his thigh is tanned and piano-calloused.

"Let's go home and pretend this never happened."