Author's Note: Just a short double-drabble written after watching "Exposed."
It wasn't necessarily a secret.
For his feelings to be a secret, he would have had to never cast one of those piercing glances in her direction, never lingered too closely when they brushed by each other, never made any of his comments that, if she'd heard them from anyone else, she would blithely forget that they were ever mentioned. Instead, their friendship allowed for the words to burrow inside her mind and rest there, mostly forgotten.
He did all of those things, and more, though.
It wasn't necessarily a secret, but it was.
To hear him say the words, say them out loud, say them within her earshot and not after a drink - or three - she knew he wasn't lying, she could tell it in his voice that he believed the words he was saying.
After all these years of friendship, after all they went through together, his words were out there: everyone in the room had heard it. She felt her stomach flip; she kept her gaze focused away from him. She had to think. Not now, not while Burns was in danger.
The thinking would come later, when she could be alone with her thoughts.