teaser: love is a uphill battle. In the snow. On a mountain. But this is mostly just a hike in the snow up a mountain. Really.
AN: takes place after the "Don't Quit" cutscene but not really spoilery to the game because I don't know anything about it that you don't already know. Except that it will be awesome duh.
Nathan Drake hated snow.
Like, normally people hated terrorism and cancer and AIDS. Nathan Drake hated snow. Especially snow on mountains. That he was climbing. Uphill.
And people actually wanted to be heroes? Heroes who had to climb uphill, in the snow, for a mystical something-or-other that may or may not be real because a crackpot told him so in his cheesy accent?
God, if Nate turned out to be right, and there was nothing there except more fucking snow, he was going to be so pissed.
Nate was just so damn numb. The parka wasn't helping. The wind was so bitter it was cutting right through the lined jacket and into his skin. He wanted fire, he wanted warmth, he wanted a bed.
Speaking of beds—Nate glanced over his shoulder.
"Hey, hold up," he called over to his tour guide, Mr. I'm the Silent, Brooding Type. Which clashed with that cowboy hat he was sporting, in Nate's opinion.
For a minute Cowboy Hat didn't look like he was going to, but then his long legs slowed, then stopped, and he turned to look at Nate with a clear I Do Not Approve look.
Nate saluted him. "Same to you, pal." Then he turned back to look at something much, much more interesting.
Elena Fisher was strong, smart and athletic but that didn't negate the fact that she was small and the snow was high. It came up to Nate's calves, so it was up passed her knees.
"You don't have to wait for me, Drake," she told him as she walked by him. Her cheeks were pink from the harsh wind and her blonde hair was fast coming undone, wispy frays dancing around her eyes.
"You used to call me Nate," he couldn't resist saying.
"Oh no, not me," Elena said. "Must have been some other girl. A real stupid one."
She held up a hand when he opened his mouth.
"Don't," she snapped, "Really." She stomped off, kicking up snow, her voice nearly lost in the rushing wind. "Especially if it's about how it was for my own good."
Deflated, he watched her reach their guide, and they both turned and started on again. Yeah, wasn't there a part in the story where the hero got the girl? That didn't seem like it was gonna happen. Not in a hundred years, at least.
Cursing as the wind blasted snow into his face, Nate followed them. Elena was a lot of things, but stupid wasn't one of them. She knew very well that sooner or later they would've come to a bitter end. Nate had chosen sooner. Sort of like a band aid.
He hadn't been exaggerating when he had said he turned everything into shit. It was one of the patented Drake talents. Fucking things up.
Plus, she had gotten to see first hand what exactly his life entailed. This shit? It wasn't something that was a rare occurrence, except for all the mystical mumbo-jumbo. But the guns and the tanks and the people out to murder his ass? This was his awesome, awesome life. Sure, when he had been with Elena he had thought about it. Getting out, but hell he'd been raised by Victor Sullivan. There was no getting out.
He'd done her a favor, really.
Up ahead, Elena tripped and fell face first into the snow. Nate bared his teeth when their guide didn't seem to be in a hurry to help her up.
Coming up to her, he grabbed her strong biceps and helped her to feet. And he kept his hands there, just for a little while, gripping her in the snow.
Elena lifted her head, blinked at him. "I wish you wouldn't."
"I'm just being courteous," he protested, dropping her arm, refusing to admit that actually, no he wasn't. He was just that desperate to feel her. "'Sides, you were about two minutes away from being buried for the winter. Which is like everything single day around here, right?"
She didn't answer, and they started walking again. He didn't make a big deal about it, but he made sure to angle himself in a way so that she was a little shielded from the harsh wind. Knowing that you were protecting your girl sort of made you feel warm too. On the inside.
Okay. No, it didn't. It was fucking freezing every which way you looked at it. And Elena wasn't his girl, not anymore. Except he had never stopped thinking of her as that. His girl. His kickass, take-no-prisoner, take-none-of-his-shit girl.
It was easy enough to say: I think we should see other people, and by other people I mean not each other. But it wasn't so easy to do. Especially since he couldn't see any people when all he could think about was Elena.
"I'm over you, you know," she announced suddenly.
"Ah, great." Really. That was nice. For her. Nate had spent the last year and a half wishing he was over her. At least someone was moving the fuck on.
Maybe he was bitter. A little. But he figured he had a right to be, seeing as how he was the one who wasn't over it. Well, maybe he didn't. He'd been doing the breaking up thing. She had being doing the 'you're going to regret this, Drake, you asshole' thing.
Elena had a tendency to be right.
"Yup," she said, too cheerfully for a girl about to be covered in snow. "I've thought about you once, maybe twice, since the last time we saw each other. And it was along the gee I sure hope you're burning hell you big giant bastard sort of thing."
That was fair. The last time they had seen each other, they had just finished some of the most amazing sex of his life, and he had put the cherry on top by saying so long and thanks for all the sex. Which really translated into Drake-speak as you're absolutely wonderful, and please God I don't want you to get hurt because of me.
But he'd made sure she'd been so insult that she had stormed off without reading between the desperate lines.
"But, you know," she went on, "I was thinking maybe we could—um—talk. If you want. It doesn't really matter to me. Since I'm over you."
He looked down at her. Her eyes were pretty and big and brown, and her hair was bright blonde and she was small and strong. Everything about her was just so Elena that it could just about break his heart.
"Talking would be… nice."
"Yeah. We could talk about what a giant idiot you are." She leaned in close, so her head brushed his shoulder, her arm looping around his. "And maybe—maybe—if you grovel, I'll consider taking you back, even though you're a moron and my standards should really be higher."
A man ought to be more insulted, the way his woman was talking to him, but Nate had this goofy smile on his face. Like hey, guess the world is made of sunshine and rainbows. Or he was just excited at the possibility of getting into Elena Fisher's pants again.
And the talking. The talking would be great, really. Because one of his favor parts of Elena was the way she talked. She just had so many words, it was really amazing that they could all be stored up in one tiny blonde.
Then he stopped.
"Wait, why should I have to grovel?" he demanded, halting them both. They both knew he was really just teasing. His head drooped down to hers.
Grinning, Elena curled her fingers in the thick fabric of his parka. "Because you broke up with me when you are so obviously in love with me."
"Hey, maybe I got over you."
"Did not," Elena told him, pretty confident.
"Maybe not, but you're over me?"
There was a sly smile in her eyes as she lifted herself on her tiptoes. "Oh, definitely. Completely over you. Did not spend a single day thinking about you. Or missing you. No, sir. In fact, what was your name again?"
He gripped her forearms, to help her up in the rest of the way, laughing. "Well, I am Nathan Drake. And you are Elena Fisher. And we are going to talk. There may be some groveling involved."
"But not right now," she muttered, wrapping her arms around his neck. "Too cold."
"Freezing," he agreed.
Her lips brushed his, sending a zing through him. Didn't warm him up completely, but it went a long way, especially when he managed to get his fingers into her soft, silky hair, nearly undoing the bun it was up in and—
"There is an insane man trying to get to an ancient, powerful stone that grants wishes," their tour guide suddenly felt the need to say, after not speaking one goddamn word the entire trek. "Perhaps this can wait?"
"If I bury you here, no one would ever, ever find you," Nate muttered darkly as Elena laughed and moved toward their guide, making apologies.
As they started ahead again, Nate trudged after them, rewarding himself every so often with a look at Elena's bottom cupped in denim—his girl had a great ass and he could look at it all day long. If it weren't for the wind. And the snow. And the mountain.
No more than five minutes back into their walk, he came to a conclusion.
Nathan Drake absolutely, positively, you better freaking believe it hated snow.
AN: I really, really wish this'll happen in the game. Because that's how I roll.