Disclaimer: No copyright infringement intended.I do not own anything. Never have. Never will. All belongs to Syfy.
A/N: I haven't wrote a fanfic in ages, but Haven somehow sucked back in. This fic is kind of a tag to "As You Were", but there is a possibility that I might turn this into something longer when I figure out what direction I want the story to go, but for now it will remain a one shot. Thanks for reading.
-Louder Than Words-
Audrey sat at her desk in Haven's Police Station where she shared the small office with local detective Nathan Wournos. Nathan would usually be at his desk before she arrived, but this morning, his desk was still empty when she walked in. Now Audrey sat alone at her desk, her mind occupied with her own "troubles".
On her desk was an intricately decorated small wooden box. Its interior was lined with green silk. The box was opened and empty since its contents were in its new owner's hand.
The silver oval pendant rested on Audrey's palm, while the long silver chain dangled behind her fingers. The light blue gemstone glistened from the light streaming through the window, but it was not the intricate designs or blue gemstone that had the FBI agent deep in thought.
She flipped the pendant over and rubbed her thumb over the engraving of the initials L.R. By now she knew every curve and loop of the engraving by touch. This necklace was her only concrete evidence that the ever elusive Lucy Ripley existed at one point in time. And apparently, the townsfolk did know about Lucy, but they have kept mum until now. But why now? She asked herself. She had been in Haven helping with the "troubles" for several months now, but she still felt like an outsider. Though she had to admit, the surprise birthday party the townsfolk tried to give her over the weekend was sweet. For someone who had no friends a couple weeks ago, she was warming up to Haven, or maybe Haven was warming up to her?
She smiled as she remembered how she felt the moment Duke led her into the hotel and everyone jumped out at her. She was terrified and thought someone was coming after her with an axe, but when she saw all the familiar faces smiling and shouting "happy birthday" to her she felt numb with happiness. Eleanor had wanted to throw her a party and she did, and now she was gone. Now every time Audrey saw the emperor penguin earrings she received from Eleanor, she would remember the doctor as one of the first local of Haven that welcomed her.
Now that she thought about it, Vince and Dave Teagues and even the Chief seemed to welcome her presence in town when she first arrived. Of course they welcomed her in their own way. There was also Nathan and Duke. Though her first meeting with Duke could only be categorized as awkward, but now Duke was another puzzle piece in her search for her mother.
The only problem was she didn't know how the Duke puzzle piece fit into the whole picture aside from him being the boy in the picture. She wished he had elaborated more on why he was standing next to Lucy Ripley in that picture, and what was his relation to Lucy Ripley? But as soon as he gave her his big reveal, he walked away leaving her to ask herself more questions that she knew there were no answers to, at least not yet. Another thing bothered her, Duke knew she was looking for information about Lucy, but why had he kept quiet about her all this time? What else was he hiding from her? Sooner or later she was going to have to corner Duke and get some answers. Even when he kept insisting he didn't like talking to cops.
"Are you all right?"
Audrey looked up surprised to see Nathan sitting at his desk looking at her. Since her desk was in front of the door, she should have seen or at least heard him come in, but the questions she was asking herself distracted her more than she expected.
"I'm fine," she replied furrowing her brows trying to figure out when he walked in. "When did you walk in?"
"A couple minutes ago," he said with a shrug. "Are you sure you're okay?"
The concern in Nathan's voice reminded her of the moment she woke up and saw him kneeling beside her with tears in his eyes. She vaguely remembered feeling his warm hands around her own, and if she remembered correctly, she felt his lips on her hand though she might have been hallucinating.
"I'm fine. Really!" she added when she saw Nathan give her a skeptical frown. "I was just thinking," she explained.
"Oh." Nathan took a sip from his cup of coffee to hide his expression. Duke had always rubbed Nathan the wrong way for years, but having Audrey thinking of Duke made him feel, for the lack of a better term, envious. Duke was charming and a lady's man, while he was the freak who couldn't feel anything. Though Jess's recent departure reminded him that he could feel a broken heart.
"Oh!" Audrey exclaimed. "I didn't mean it that way. It was something he said."
"Duke says a lot of things."
"Yes, he does," she nodded in agreement, "while you say nothing."
"Well, I'm a firm believer of actions speaking louder than words."
"That's right, you're Action Man," she teased.
"When you put it that way, I sound like a superhero reject."
"Well, you kind of are," she said. Nathan gave her a look. "Your superhero power is not being able to feel pain. So you can go walk over hot coals to save a damsel in distress."
"Walk over hot coals?"
"It was the first thing that popped into my head," she said, "so sue me."
"I just might have to," he smiled and took another sip of his coffee.
They sat in a comfortable silence as Audrey debated if she should bring up a topic or not.
"I was talking to the chief earlier," she said, "and he told me about how you sprung into action while I was body snatched, so you are an action man."
He scoffed. "He wants me to be like him." His disgust was obvious.
"He's proud of you, Nathan," she said. "He just doesn't know how to express himself." Nathan made a face. "At least he's trying. I think. He's an odd man too."
"Can we not talk about the Chief anymore?" he asked annoyed.
"Okay," she conceded. "I know this is none of my business, Nathan, but at least try to see that he's trying."
Nathan sighed. Parker had a point. After the chameleon incident, it was the first time the Chief had even tried to compliment him. Vague as it was, it was some form of compliment. "I only sprung into action because you weren't there," he said after a moment.
"But I was there, sort of."
"The chameleon still wasn't you."
"And how did you know?" she asked hoping that this time he wouldn't be evasive in his answer. She had tried to ask the Chief if he knew what happened before Nathan shot her doppelganger, but apparently everyone's back was turned when the confrontation played out. So Nathan was the only witness.
"It was the little things," he said simply.
"Are you ever going to tell what these 'little things' are?"
Nathan only smiled.
"Fine, you can keep your secrets." Audrey held her hands up in defeat, and remembered that the necklace was still entangled in her hand. "I only have time for one secret right now anyway," she said looking at the engraved letters again.
"What secret is that?"
"And we're back to Duke." Nathan sat back in his chair warily.
"Did you know he knew Lucy Ripley?" Nathan only shrugged in response. "I just wish someone would just tell me everything already. It's so frustrating that I'll get a glimpse of something that could be an answer and that person ends up leaving or dying. It's like someone is dangling a carrot in front of me, and just when I reach for it, they pull it away, and I'm grasping at nothing but air."
"You have more information now than you did when you first got here." Nathan pointed out.
"That's true." She had a picture and now she had a first and last name, but nothing more. This place was a small town, and they had to all know Lucy Ripley at one point. Audrey just wasn't sure what she needed to do in order to have Haven open up to her, but Nathan was right. She did have a bit more leads about her past. Before coming to Haven she had nothing at all. "Hey, did you know Lucy Ripley?"
He shrugged again. "I don't really remember much from back then. Sorry."
"It's okay. It was worth a shot," she said. "I know I'm still the outsider, but I feel like the town is putting me through a series of tests, and if I pass a test I get another tidbit about Lucy. At this rate, I might have to solve all the 'troubles' before I get all the answers I want."
Nathan observed Parker. He could see that she was getting frustrated with the search for the woman who could be her mother. He wanted to help her, but he wasn't really sure how. But he was also sure that the moment Parker found what she was looking for, she would leave. If Parker left during the return of the "troubles", Haven would be in deeper trouble. He didn't know why, but having Parker in Haven made the work more enjoyable if not easier since she always thought way outside of the box. It ceased to amaze him that Parker actually survived in the FBI with her outlandish theories. Then again maybe that's why they sent her to Haven to track down Jonas Lester in the first place.
He liked working with Parker. Instead of having to deal with the Chief, he got to work with Parker who always had a smile and sarcastic comment for him. Also he didn't want Parker to leave because he could feel her. It was selfish of him to want to keep her around because she made him feel human again, but he did. When they first met, Parker said that she couldn't fix him, but she was wrong. She had somehow fixed him. Only he hoped that this fix wasn't temporary. Now every time he saw Parker he had to resist the urge to walk up to her and hold her hand. And ever since he kissed Parker's clone, he wondered what it would be like to actually kiss her and feel her kiss. He had debated with himself whether he should tell Parker about this phenomenon. Where she was the only person he could feel, but something in him was telling him to wait to tell her. It wasn't an issue of trust, but something else was holding him back. The odd part was he wasn't sure what that something was.
"I don't think you're an outsider anymore," he said.
Audrey narrowed her eyes in a squint as if mocking Nathan. "Really?"
"If I thought you were an outsider, would I bother to get you this?" He pulled out a shiny silver box with a blue ribbon from under his desk.
"It's the shiny box that you said was my birthday gift," she said smiling as she remembered how awkward Nathan looked the first time he showed her the box when they were at the hotel.
"Actually, since someone else opened your gift, I decided I should get you a different gift," he said as he got up from his desk and walked over to hand Audrey the silver box.
"You didn't have to do that." Audrey pulled the bow from the box as Nathan sat on the edge of her desk and watched her. Before opening the box lid, she stopped and looked up at Nathan. "Should I guess what you got for me first?"
"If you want."
"Did you pick it out yourself?" she asked.
"This time I did."
"There is always a story with you, Nathan." She picked up the box and shook it. "It's definitely clothes" she shook it again then placed her hands under the box to guess its weight. "It has a decent weight, and since it's from you, it must be something practical. I'd say it's a sweater. A sweater that says 'Go Maine!' or something."
"You're good, Agent Parker," Nathan said impressed at her deduction skills.
"Why thank you, Detective Wournos." She put the box down on the table and began to pry open the cover. Nathan watched Parker's face as she pulled apart the white tissue paper and saw his gift.
This time he knew what to expect when she opened her box.
Parker gasped and ran her hands over the blue sweater. "Cashmere," she smiled and brought the blue sweater up from the box and rubbed it against her cheek. "It's so soft, and I love the color. Thank you."
"You're welcome. I thought the blue would compliment your eyes," Nathan said. He remembered when he was out with Jess one day, and he saw the sweater in the store and the color of the sweater immediately reminded him of Parker, especially her eyes.
"You know the color of my eyes?" she asked amused.
"Well they say that if you lose one sense…"
"Your other senses are heightened," Audrey finished for him. "All right Mr. Observant. This is beautiful," she said and stood up to hold the sweater over her chest. "And I think it's the perfect size."
"I had help from Dave Teagues. Since he got you a dress, 'cute' shoes and a clutch for your birthday, I figured he knew your size."
"They got me a dress and shoes?"
"Oh, I forgot you didn't wear them. It was a really nice blue dress, and it looked great on… not you."
"You're welcome, Prudence"
"Okay," Audrey said, "let's promise to never call each other by our middle names again."
"Agreed," he said.
"Really, Nathan, I really love this gift. Again thanks." Then she reached over and hugged him.
The first time Parker kissed him on the cheek he had not expected it, and he definitely did not expect to feel her kiss. Now this time she hugged him, he had not expected it either. But when her cheek brushed against his, he wanted to keep her there. He wanted to feel the warmth of her and the softness and smoothness of her skin against his face. He couldn't believe that he almost lost her two days ago. His arms tightened around her.
"Hey buddy, that's one heck of a bear hug you got there," Audrey said over his shoulder.
"Sorry," he mumbled and released her.
"No, it's okay." She stepped back and looked up at him. "Are you okay?"
"I was just thinking how I almost lost you this weekend," he confessed.
"Well, you didn't. You found me, and I'm here. Now before you get weepy on me are there any broken clothes lines we need to investigate something?"
Nathan smiled. Leave it to Parker to tell him to "man up" every now and then.
"Laverne called saying that there was a rouge seagull flying around inside the Rust Bucket, and they don't know what to do about it."
"Sounds like a job for Action Man."
"And his sidekick," Nathan added.
"Sidekick? Okay, I'm not calling you Action Man anymore." Audrey folded the sweater and put it back in the gift box and slipped Duke's gift into her pocket. "All right let's go and catch a bird."