Disclaimer: I do not own Lost or its characters. I only own the story in my head.
Summary: They changed everything. Flight 815 never crashed, the island is underwater, and the same people are living different lives. So they think, because fate as other plans.
Sideways Stories from the Castaways
James and Juliet Part 2
Memories begin flooding through their minds, a conversation about Aliens, attacking people on a beach, docks and two weeks, dinners, picnics and holidays, smiling, laughter, witty remarks and retorts, a baby being delivered, sun flowers and lying around in bed together.
They both suck in their breath as the last memory hits them hard. Hands grasping each other tightly, shouting wrecked with guilt and lost chances, crashing to the empty darkness alone with a bomb and a white light, waking to see him holding her in his arms with so much love in his eyes.
"Juliet" he chokes out as the all those emotions run through his body at once.
"James" she says softly as the reality of what happened to her in that other life hits her.
He pulls her into his arms and holds her tightly as she leans against his chest squeezing his back. Tears run down both of their faces. They wanted to change that life so it never happened and they did. But the memories of the life were real, the pain, the tragedies, the happiness and sorrow had happened to them.
He holds her face in his hands. "I love you Juliet, I love you so much" he says finishing what he didn't get to say when he lost her twice, he leans in and presses his lips to hers. They separated slowly; smiling and he reaches forward and tucks a stray lock of her blond hair behind her ear and out of her face. He brings her in his arms. He felt as if he had waited a lifetime to hold her in his arms again, he wasn't going to let her go.
"I was wrong" She says as her eyes fill with tears.
"'Bout what?" he says whispering in her ear not wanting to let her go.
"About us" she says. She was wrong, she never should have doubted him, and she wasn't his second choice for the first time in both of their lives they were first in each other's hearts.
"Being with you right now is all that matters; it's the universe way of tellin' us that were meant of each other." He tells her.
"The universe, when did you start believing in that?" she asks with as smile.
"The moment I saw you face again" he tells her. "I knew I was in love and I don't believe in love at first sight" he says grinning.
"Maybe that's how it works" she says with a smile.
"What? When people lose each other in another universe and find each other again?" he asks with a laugh at the absurdity of it all. A few moments ago he didn't believe in time travel and magic healing islands. But now anything was possible even a different universe.
"Yep" she answers with a grin, than her smile fades. "My life is so different now" she tells him. "I remember that other life and things have changed. I was happy but I still felt…"
"Empty" He finishes for her. Juliet nods her agreement. He had thought he was content doing his job and nothing else but he wasn't. He had flings but nothing serious and it wasn't that he was afraid, he felt empty inside and couldn't give himself over to someone else completely. So he always pushed everyone away. In his other life he felt the same but instead of pushing them away so he wouldn't hurt them he used them to get what he wanted.
She hadn't been in too many relationships, she blamed it on work, but that wasn't it. Her marriage was a mistake they barely knew each other and only happened because of the circumstances and even than she knew she couldn't stay in it. She just wasn't interested in the men she met, she dated a few to please her sister but they didn't feel real.
"Is there somewhere we can talk that's more private?" James asks her as he sees the other people hospital staring at them. He supposed they did look strange holding each other like they were in the middle of the hallway.
She thinks about it, her office wouldn't be very private since it was a general office that she borrowing. Then she smiles. "Yes" she tells him and they start walking.
The sheets still covered the entrance because the finishing touches were being added but it was safe to be there. "This is the new wing to the hospital, it will be open in two weeks" She tells him holding open the sheet so they could walk through.
"Two weeks, huh" He says with a knowing grin and she smiles back. James looks around at the brightly colored hallway. "What's it for the kids?" he asks.
Juliet smiles, "Psychiatry" She replies.
"Crazy people, that fits since that's what people will think of us if they tell them" he says following her along the corridor.
They find some plastic chairs along the wall and sit down. Still holding on to her hand he looks at her and smiles. She meets his gaze. "James" she says.
"What?" He asks.
"I was married to Jack" she tells him quickly wanting to just get that out there.
His face registers shock and confusion. "Jack…and…married?" he asks trying to put the sentence together.
"Yes" She replies. "We met in Med School in a general surgery class" she says. "We were performing an appendectomy." She thinks back at how strange that was now. "He was cute and we were just dating and…I… got pregnant" she stays trying to keep his eye contact. "That's why we got married"
"So you and Jacko have a…?" he asks, he was disappointed and happy for her. If none of that other stuff had happened to her than at least she got to live her life even if that included a kid with Jack.
"Son, his name is David" She tells him. "He's amazing and one of the only good things we got from our short marriage"
"How long were you married?" he asks.
"Four years" she says. "David was three when we divorced"
"So you never met Edmund?" He asks wondering what happened to him.
"Now that I know my other life, that's another good thing, I was with Jack when I shared a class with Edmund Burke so I had no interest in him" They were lab partners again but she had a boyfriend that she liked so Edmund's attempt to hit on her went nowhere. So her relationship Jack saved her from a world of pain that she would have shared with Edmund.
For that he was grateful, he heard all about her former ex husband and was glad she never went through any of that.
"I married Jack because of David, being a family was important to both us so we tried. I knew from the beginning of our relationship that I loved him but wasn't in love with him. We were married for four years but stopped acting like it after two." She tells him. "He was so afraid of being like his father that he distanced himself from our son that even at three David could sense something was off. So I knew that it wasn't going to work and staying in the marriage would only make it worse. Just because two people love each other doesn't mean they're supposed to be together" she tells him repeating the words her mother told her and the words she told James in the other life. It took her another life to understand what those words meant. "Things are better, Jack came around and he and David have a great relationship now." She wondered if their island selves would've turned out the same had they not had any obstacles in the way. The obstacles made them figure out sooner rather than later that they never would've worked. Now with none they had to figure it out themselves.
He sighs, Jack as an ex was ten times better than Edmund. It made him think of Clementine, he never met Cassidy so she didn't exist. Now Juliet had the kid. "How old is he?"
"Fifteen" she answers. "Jack and him are the only reason I'm in LA" She tells him. "I wouldn't have been here to meet you." She says with a smile. "Maybe this was all supposed to happen"
"Maybe" he agrees.
"You're a cop" She says wanting to know about his life.
"Detective" he replies.
"What made you decide go into law?" she asks.
He takes a deep breath, just like always he felt comfortable telling her about his life choices. She was the woman he was waiting for. "My parents still died in…the same way"
"James" she says squeezing his hand and looking at him, she didn't go through the same thing but she understood more than anyone he's ever met.
"I wanted to find that man, Sawyer." He says trying to calm himself down, he meets her caring gaze and his breathing returns to normal. "I was writing him the letter but the pen wouldn't work. My Uncle came up to me and took the paper away and told me it wouldn't bring them back. I knew he was right but I was still angry."He takes a breath. "After the funeral I saw the cops arresting someone across the street…I saw them throw him against the car and shove him inside. I didn't know who the man was or what he had done but I felt a sense of justice being served. So I decided then that I was going to do that too, I was going to find criminals and put them behind bars so they couldn't hurt anyone." he says. "I majored in Criminal Justice at UCLA, so that's how I ended up here" he smiles at her, maybe she was right. "If we both lived in LA this whole time, how come we didn't meet until now?"
"I don't know" she replies. "Something brought us together...today April 15, 2008" she says. "I don't care why, James I'm just happy I found you" She raises her hand and caresses his face. She reaches her hand around his neck and pulls him closer for a deep kiss.
"I didn't think they're would be anyone else here" a voice says to them.
They break away from each other. "Hurley" James says surprised. He still had his mutton chops and was dressed in a suit.
"Dude, no ones called me that in a long time, do we know each other?" He asks. He didn't recognize them but they felt vaguly familar.
James looks at Juliet. "No, not in this life time" Hurley looks at them confused.
"We were just looking for somewhere private to talk" Juliet says as they both stand up.
"That didn't look like talking" he tells them with a smile. "Who am I to judge if you two want to play Grey's Anatomy"
"What are you doing here?" James asks.
"I donated the money to build this wing" He tells them. "Hugo Reyes" he says holding out his hand.
"James Ford" he says shaking the outstretched hand.
"Dr. Juliet Carlson, I work here" she says shaking Hugo's hand.
"Juliet!" a female voice says behind them.
Juliet turns around and sees a frazzled woman running down the hallway towards her. "Have you seen a short blond man in a hospital gown running around here?" she asks when she's in front of them.
"No" Juliet replies. "Did you lose a patient" Juliet asks.
"No, well sort off. I thought we were making progress so when I opened my door to let him go back to his room he took off. He's looking for some pregnant woman that he saw earlier, he told me she's his reason for living"
"I know how he feels" James says looking at Juliet.
"His name is Charlie, he in a band"
"Driveshaft" James finishes her sentence.
"Yes, how did you know?"
"Lucky guess" he says.
Libby looks up at the man standing behind them. "Do I know you?" She asks.
"…I don't…think so" Hugo replies shyly.
"I have seen you before…you look very familiar" she tells him rubbing her jaw. "Hugo Reyes!"
Hugo jumps back a little surprised. "…yes that's me" he says.
"They kind of had thing before she died" James leans down and whispers into Juliet's ear. She smiles.
"Well Hugo Reyes, this is Dr. Elizabeth Smith a friend of mine" she says introducing them.
"Libby" she says holding out her hand. Hugo takes it and both of their eyes close and their breathing increases.
"Is that what we looked like? No wonder people were staring" he says smiling at Juliet. "You said a pregnant woman?" He asks Libby and she nods. "I think I know where we can find your missing junkie" he tells her.