Disclaimer: Well, I created Adrienne. But y'know, it's pretty obviously not mine.
A/N: First Grey's fic! Maddison. I'm a die hard Mer/Der, but I'm flexible on Mark and Addison - they have great relationships with other people too. I do love the ship though, and the characters are just priceless. Their story interests me, and so, here it is the way I imagine it.
"Honey, it's perfectly normal to look at other guys when you're a married woman," Adrienne reassured.
"Yeah, I suppose," Addison said, slumping down.
Adrienne was the best friend she had, but Addison couldn't even tell her the full story. It was just too awful to pass on, and Addie knew that if you want to keep a secret, you can't tell anyone. Not a single soul. Not that that stopped her usually – usually she'd tell Derek. She could tell Derek everything. Except this. She especially couldn't tell Derek, of all people, this.
She knew that it was normal to look at other guys. I mean, no woman was ever going to stop looking at men. Not even Derek, who she knew had a bit of a hidden jealous streak, would ask that. And if it were just a man, it wouldn't be a problem. If it were any man except him.
And even if it were only looking. Looking was acceptable – damn near every woman in the hospital looked at Mark. But she'd catch herself making the occasional inappropriately flirtatious comment, brushing her hand against his arm. And every time she did it, he'd smile in that infuriating way, like he knew. Well of course he knew. Much as she would have liked to think otherwise, it wasn't exactly subtle.
"Addie? Penny for them?" Adrienne said, interrupting.
"I was just thinking my break ends in five minutes, I should go."
The two women were sitting cross-legged on the lower bunk of an on-call room bed, Addison on a quick break and Adrienne, a psychiatrist, skiving because she didn't have any appointments. Addison swung her legs off and grabbed her white coat from where it was hanging up.
"Thanks for the free therapy," she grinned.
"Anytime, honey," Adrienne said, kicking back so she was lying on the bed. "I'm going to have a nap."
Addison laughed and left the room. Maybe it was because she was still laughing that she didn't see him, but for whatever reason she walked straight into Mark.
"Woah," he said, grabbing her shoulders to steady them both and letting his clipboard drop to the floor. "Easy there."
To her horror, Addison felt her cheeks blush a deep red, and she stammered a little over her apology. Once she'd managed to get out 'sorry, wasn't looking', she shut her mouth and bent down to pick up his chart for him, at the same time as he did. They fumbled together for a second or two, fingers brushing, embarrassment climbing, until eventually they lifted the board and stood.
"Well," Mark said. "I should go see my patient."
"Yeah," Addison replied. "Me too.""
She realised she was still holding the other end of the clipboard and let go as though it were burning hot, taking a step back. They looked at each other, simultaneously opening their mouths to speak.
"Anyway," they said in sync, turning and walking in opposite directions as quickly as they could without drawing suspicion.
Once Mark was far enough away he did the first thing he thought of – hid in a supply cupboard. Pushing out some interns who'd luckily just found what they needed, he slammed the door shut and rested his back against it, breathing heavily as though he'd been running. He couldn't help it. He'd tried, he'd tried so much. She was his best friend's wife, for god's sake. She was Derek's. Her bright smile, her red hair, the blush that had rendered him speechless minutes before, the touch of her hand – they were Derek's. But recently Mark had been looking at her differently. Recently his heart had skipped when she'd seen her approaching, his palms had sweated when he was forced to spend time with them as a couple, watch them holding hands, smiling together, like everything was perfect. And for Derek, surely it was. They'd always competed, and were both tops of their respective fields in surgery. They'd had 'who can get the most girls' competitions when they were younger. Once it would have given Mark pleasure to say he'd usually won. But now Derek had the prize – Derek had Addison, and no amount of strangers, nurses or girls from bars could equal that.
He'd never dream of making a move, of course. He could never hurt Derek like that; they were practically brothers. It would be so much easier, though, if Addison would stop. Stop making suggestive comments, stop putting her hand on his arm or smiling at him for no reason at all. At least, that was what it seemed like. At the least, it was all in his head, wishful thinking. At the most, it was the lightest of playful flirting. She'd never do it if she knew what he thought... felt... imagined. If she knew... he shuddered at the thought.
Derek and Addison didn't have a perfect marriage, Mark knew better than anyone. But they were close, still, and if she knew perhaps he would too. And that, that would be unbearable.
Mark was used to breaking taboos. He'd never considered himself bound by the rules of society. But he knew in the depth of his heart that the things he was thinking were unforgivable. And it wasn't because of any social nicety – he was dreaming, fantasising, of betraying someone he loved more than his own life.
He'd tried to exorcise himself of the traitorous feelings, but nothing worked. It didn't matter what he did, every day – and every night – she haunted him. When he felt ready, he stepped out of the cupboard. He had one more patient to see and that should last him until the end of his shift. Chuckling to himself, he wondered what the Chief of Surgery would think if he knew that he paid Mark to daydream about a married woman and hide in cupboards.
He decided that after work he'd go out to try and pick up a girl for the night. If he failed then, the alternative was always to get blindingly drunk.
He knew from experience it wouldn't work, that the next day when he saw Addison again the feelings would be back, but for the night, just that night, he wanted to make them go away.
*goes to bite nail* *reminds herself she's given up biting her nails* *types what she's doing to stop herself biting her nail*
What did you guys think?