Disclaimer: I don't own Grey's Anatomy, et al.

Author's Note:

Most of this story was inspired by the beautiful song by Josh Radin, called "Today". When Derek declared his love for Meredith, I always wished this was the featured song. I wanted Derek to reclaim his life with Meredith because he had no other choice – such as it was his destiny, fate – whatever you want to call it. I like the message of this song – it says carpe diem, take it, and take it today, don't put it off – the music and lyrics are beautiful and uplifting and well, Radin's delivery is remarkable (listen wherever you can).

The first part of this story is a one shot split into three parts. Thereafter there are eleven additional chapters each with their own song inspirations. I'll warn you, because of the nature of what Derek is going through much of this is stream of consciousness at first, I hope that doesn't deter readers from giving it a chance.

Lyrics for Josh Radin's "Today":

Shoelaces untied
You can dry your eyes
Perfect shadows alive
Behind us
This is the day I make you mine

The way your hair lies
sometimes unrecognized
All the way from these today
on a train
Nothing to say if there's still time

But you are the one
I've been waiting for today
And here comes the sun
That's been baiting on today

Lately I've lost my tongue
Today you found the sun
I know not long has grown
Well I thank god u came along

But you are the one
I've been waiting for today
And here comes the sun
That's been baiting on today

You looked right through me
When there was no one else
I sat beside you and became myself
Today... today

You are the one
I've been waiting for today
And here comes the sun today
That's been baiting on today

Chapter 1 – Today – Part 1 of 3

It was a beautiful morning as Seattle mornings go; a light mist covered everything and left behind a luminous sheen. The ever-present cool damp air filled his lungs. The sky was bright with hope and rebirth, maybe the sun would grace the sky like the weatherman predicted, Derek smiled, he loved these rare sunny days.

He crossed over his property line and rounded the bend to his trailer, even with the heavy task at hand, the new beginning he was looking for was within reach and that hopeful optimism he once harbored – that hope rich of promise and excitement – was beginning to percolate through his veins again. He was desperately trying to stay in the euphoric bubble in which he was living, but he knew it was unlikely with what he needed to accomplish today.

His mind was weighed down with worry, but his heart was lifted by the newfound capacity to love again and he was hoping this new love would transcend above all else and soften the blows when it came down to it.

Derek drove down the bend and passed the trailer. He stopped at the edge of the clearing. He cut the engine off and sighed. He sat there for a few seconds unwilling to move, realizing he needed a moment to prepare himself for the onslaught of emotions he was surely about to face. He swiftly exited the car and closed the door. He and walked out a little bit and sat down, Indian style. From his vantage point he can see the water; the way it glowed in the early morning light with the mist rising from it was really something special, it was so peaceful, serene and quiet – it was the perfect spot – he silently agreed with Meredith.

Reclining back on the palms of his hands Derek squinted up into the sky, the looming Douglas firs were not enough to offer some relief to his eyes from the bright gray sky – a sure sign the sun was doing its damndest to shine through – he smiled again. He sat up again and looked over his shoulder at the car … he supposed he should get started. He trained his eyes on the area in front of him again, there was a cluster of Douglas firs to his right, just at the edge of the clearing, below those he spotted several large rocks – one almost triangular in shape – stood out from the rest. He wondered if he could pick that thing up.

He should feel sad and he does to a point – but his mind was at ease knowing he finally made a decision he was willing to live with – even though he desperately wished he could take back some of the events of the last forty-eight hours. He took a deep breath, he needed to refocus for the moment, and beating himself up about his mistakes wouldn't quell the bigger dread that was trying to seep into his heart. He shivered and despite the cold morning air, he broke into a sweat as his heart raced, thump, thump, thump, just get it done, he told himself.

The small hardened pit festered in his stomach, he tried to push the tight ball out of his mind before the bile collected in his throat – but it was relentless and continued to move and churn and grow and rankle – reminding him again of that greater reason why the consequences of his recent actions were undeniably appalling.

Pushing away the stormy range of thoughts that swirled in his mind, he stood up and made the short jaunt to that rock, he ran his fingers along the top of the small gray boulder. He would need gloves he decided, but it was perfect, he should be able to lift it with some effort. He turned and bypassed the car – it was a beautiful day for walking – he headed up to the trailer to get some supplies.

The ugly pit continued to rage against his insides and Derek chose to ignore it as he approached the trailer, just get the shovel and move on, he thought. He rounded to the back and grabbed a large shovel and some gloves.Was he really doing this? He was conflicted and he wasn't sure he was ready to deal with the range of emotions that might follow – but at the same time – how could he not go through with it? After everything they had been through together, he wanted to do this – he planned to do this yesterday – but then he was imprisoned by the quarantine in triplicate: mind … body … spirit.

Chapter 1 – Today – Part 2 of 3 to follow.