A/N: [Written for Livejournal user, Scottique, for the Apocalyptothon LJ comm.] Heh, I don't write too much het pairings, but its always interesting to do something different. I've never even considered this pairing, so I'm majorly surprised by the result of this fic.
Spoiler: If you didn't watched the episode 'Simple Explanation' and don't know about what happened to Kutner, don't read this. XD But then, I didn't watch the eppie either, but I know what happened with him, so.... Proceed with caution.
Warnings: Angst, smut, sexual content, dark!fic
Word count: 2,201
Sometimes, I Forget I'm Still Awake and You're Still Gone
When Cuddy entered her office that morning, Thirteen was already sitting in front of her desk. The half full cup of coffee told her she'd been there for awhile. Pushing the baby carriage the rest of the way into the office, Cuddy removed her coat before bending and removing Rachel's coat. The precocious little girl, squealed with joy when she saw Thirteen watching them. For some reason, in the past year, Rachel had seemed to grow attached to Thirteen, becoming her official favorite person, aside from Cuddy, to see.
With a slightly strained smile, Thirteen smiled at the little girl as Cuddy extracted Rachel from the carriage and moved past the brunette to the other side of the desk. For a long moment, Cuddy paid no mind to her co-worker as she settled herself into her chair, the baby on her lap giggling and occasionally squealing.
"Let me guess..." Cuddy finally said, acknowledging the brunette. "Same problem today?"
Thirteen glared at her boss's boss in mild annoyance. "What else?"
Sighing, Cuddy smoothed her daughter's hair back into place. "This is our job."
"The world is going to hell and you continue to run this hospital. You act like there's not a nuclear holocaust on the horizon!"
"Remy, we've been through this already - I'm not going to put this place on hold because of mass paranoia. No matter what's going on in the world, this is still a hospital. People are still getting sick and injured. They still need us, so we need to be here for them." The older woman said, repeating the same words for the hundredth time. It was beginning to feel like a mantra already.
"It's ridiculous." Thirteen said quietly, folding her arms. She wanted to argue, but the bubbly baby trying to get her attention didn't allow her to.
"That's not fair, Remy." Cuddy said, her head hanging as she watched her daughter squirm about on her lap. "I'm just as scared as everyone else. I have Rachel to think about." She hugged the little girl, looking up sorrowfully at Thirteen. "Ever since the news with this war, I wake up everyday wondering if I'm going to get to see Rachel grow up. You're not the only one going through changes."
Sighing, Thirteen tore her gaze away from the mother and daughter, standing from her seat. "You're right. I'm sorry. I'm going to go make my rounds now." She said, moving to the door.
"I understand, Remy." Thirteen's hand paused on the door knob. "This is about Kutner."
The brunette was out the door without answering or even looking back. What she wouldn't admit was that Cuddy was right, it was about Kutner. He wasn't here. He'd skipped out on this impending tragedy, taking the easy road out. Thirteen was angry about it. Everyday she woke up and remembered what was going in the world and she was angry because he wasn't there to go through this too. To feel the constant tension that filled the air every time she walked out of your apartment building. To watch the news and see the quiet terror in the anchors' eyes. To know the terror of an uncertain death. To see how parents clung tightly to their children, much like Cuddy had done to Rachel.
Walking down the hall at a brisk pace, she tried to ignore the real reason she was angry with Kutner. It was all those reasons and so much more that it hurt to even briefly think about it. In the team room, she looked around to see who was there today. Foreman had come for several days in the beginning of the impending crisis, but his parents pleaded for him to come to them and with much reluctance he left. Taub stayed on, already sitting at the table when she arrived. His wife had disappeared to visit her family and he refused to speak much about it. Her gaze lingered only for a second on the spot Kutner use to sit at before she peeked into House's office. With a sigh, she sat next to Taub, glancing at the newspaper in his hands.
"Wasn't his alarm clock suppose to go off yet?" She asked noncommittally, reading a random article in the opened paper.
"It did go off, an hour ago. He tossed it across the room and hasn't moved since then." Taub answered, waiting for Thirteen to finish reading before changing the page.
"Should I wake him?"
"I think it is your turn, if I remember correctly."
"Whatever happened to chivalry?"
"It died when Armageddon came into view."
Rolling her eyes at the balding man's smirk, she stood and went into House's office. House had set up a fold-able cot next to his desk. Surprisingly, he seemed as dedicated to the patients as Cuddy did, not that he would admit it nor was anyone allowed to mention it out loud. He still lounged about most of the time, but from time to time he actually did wander off to make rounds. Taub and Thirteen theorized it had something to do with Wilson, another topic neither was allowed to speak about out loud. With a sigh, Thirteen crossed her arms as she tried to think of a way to get her boss out of bed.
"House, get your ass up already." Was the first thing that came out of her.
"Don't you have somewhere to be? Some hot chick to bang or something?" House mumbled from his pillow.
"Get up, House. It's already eleven."
"In the evening? Please say yes."
"Damn. Then go away and try again when it's dark out."
"Whatever." Thirteen growled and left the man to snuggle up under his blanket.
"Abuse of power?" Taub asked when he saw her exit the room.
"You'd think he would get tired of it."
"That'll be the day the world ends." The balding man chuckled, grabbing a pen to try his hand at the crossword section in the newspaper.
"I'm going to go do my rounds. See you in a bit."
She was gone before he could say 'o', walking as fast as she could. Instead of going down to where the patients were, she was flying up steps, moving as fast her heels allowed. The heavy click-clack against cement steps in the stairwell was almost deafening. In a near marathon sprint, she was on the final landing and bursting through the roof door. The wind chilled her light sweat instantly and she had to hug herself for a long time before the chill lessen it's hold on her. Holding herself like that reminded her of Kutner - the way he held her when they were finally alone. Tears filled her eyes as her memories of him slowly flooded her.
Kutner's holding her so gently and kissing her neck so sweetly that Thirteen's actually purring in response. His hands feel her curves through the clothing, touching her as if he's trying to memorize her just by feel. Teeth graze her earlobe, his breath tickling her and she giggles as she spins around in his arms. She wants him so badly, but she can't say it. Thirteen was never good at expressing her feelings, so she presses her lips to his to make him understand that she wants to say. 'I love you'. Kutner smiles into the kiss because he understands what she's not saying and he decides to communicate the same way by dragging his mouth down to her neck, suckling lightly to avoid a hickey. They don't want House on their case, even though they think he's already beginning to catch on.
Thirteen's fingers are playing in Kutner's hair as his mouth trails further south, his hands unbuttoning and moving clothing out of the way so he can better kiss her skin. Her jacket's gone. Then her shirt, and he's already undoing the last clasp of her bra before she realizes her own hands have been disrobing him too. His mouth at her breasts, nibbling and licking. Here he knows he can leave hickeys and he eagerly takes the opportunity to leave his mark on her. He doesn't do it for egotistical reasons, not by a long shot. Kutner knows he's not long for the world and he wants to leave his impression on the green eyed woman so she'll remember him, at least for a little while longer. The brunette is oblivious to this fact of course, she only thinks he's a bitey type and she loves it.
His lips on hers again as he moves himself closer to her. Bare skin against bare skin, at least above the waist. Below the waist, Thirteen can feel the hardness waiting for. Aching to be in her. She blushes because Kutner's the only the man that could make her feel this... Special. This loved. It's new and beautiful to her and it makes her groan in desire. Kutner doesn't know this, because he's always assumed she's always gotten all the perfect type of partners. Sexy and beautiful. He's mused over why she would ever give a oddity like him a chance, but those are only the bitter words in the head. The bad ones that will eventually lead to his destruction. However, that's at least several weeks away from this moment.
Right then, Thirteen's undoing Kutner's zipper while he's sliding his hand up her skirt. He smirks when he finds nothing underneath. He loves that she's full of surprises. It's all a game between them, this secret they share and hide behind closed doors and dark corners far from the sight of anyone they may know. They don't know what it is, but they love each other and that's all that matters right? Only they're not positive if it's lust or love yet. Too soon to tell, but it definitely feels like love. Even when Kutner's already inside Thirteen, pressing himself tighter against her body just so she can feel herself full of him. She can only squirm and try not to buck against him, because she loves how this moment feels.
The way he feels.
He's clutching her tight as he thrusts in and out of her. She clutches him even tighter, digging her nails into his skin as she tries to keep herself from toppling over. Sex against a wall can be dangerous if you forget where you're at. The air is thick with sweat and heat as they rock back and forth between each other. Lips on skin when not crying out in throes of passion. Kutner's as gentle with her in sex as he is when he's innocently kissing her. There's tears spilling down her cheeks as the small room gets hotter by the second. Whether the tears are from the heat or because of how her heart feels for Kutner, Thirteen either doesn't know, or rather not admit to which. Heavy panting, muscles straining... Kutner comes first, the heat of his ejaculation filling her and giving her that final push over the edge.
Together they slide to the ground, in each other's arms, slightly spent, panting, and laughing at their youthfulness. Laughing at life and all its challenges.
Only, Thirteen wasn't laughing anymore. The laughter had died with Kutner. There were only tears now. Tears for Kutner. Tears for herself. Tears for death. Tears for the impending future.
North Korea had declared war on the US. They had the nuclear missiles to back them up, it was only a question of when they would use them. Where was Kutner to hold her now? Why couldn't they laugh together at this? It was unfair. It was why Thirteen was so angry lately. She buried the memories of Kutner again, hating how they made her react. It felt pointless to feel this way. It was only a possibility that North Korea would launch deadly missile, no matter what they said. But if they did... The death and destruction would be irreparable. Maybe... She was a little jealous that Kutner had skipped out on all this. He was carefree now. Laughing at her as she trudged through the hospital and what was left of her already short life, unsure what she should be doing with her time. Was it the end? Maybe, maybe not. With a final glance at the horizon, Thirteen headed back inside the building.
SEVERAL DAYS LATER...
October fourteenth, at exactly four pm, North Korea launches several missiles at the US and Canada. The resulting blasts obliterate half of California, parts of the mid-west and parts of the central part of the US. Several parts of Canada are also devastated with blasts, especially the territory of Ontario.
Only one missile reached as far as New Jersey. The helpless victims could only watch and listen to the missile whiz by overhead, in utter terror.
It misses, landing several dozen miles northeast from the city of Trenton, in the ocean. The resulting tidal wave wipes out New York City, Delaware and most of Maryland.
Thirteen laughed that night. She was alive. Kutner would have been laughing too if he had been there with her, in celebration and joy for her and everyone else he had cared for.