Title: Succumb (to the pull of gravity)
Word count: 1770
Spoilers: Through "I Kissed a Girl."
Disclaimer: All characters you recognize belong to Tess Gerritsen and the people at TNT. Title taken from the Missy Higgins song "Unbroken."
Summary: Post "I Kissed a Girl." "It's been two weeks, and she's still thinking about it."
It's been two weeks, and she's still thinking about it. Not actively, really. It's not like she spends time sitting in her chair thinking about that one thing Maura said that one time.
"Well it's a good thing you're not my type."
Well… maybe she does a think about it little bit. But only a little. She's not like, obsessing over it.
It kinda bugs her because, you know, if she was going to date a woman (and she isn't but, you know, if she was), it would probably be Maura.
She's not saying that she's gay. Because she's not. Just to be clear.
She doesn't spend a lot of time thinking about romance, but when she does, she thinks that she'd like to end up with someone kind of like Maura. Actually, she'd like to end up with someone exactly like Maura. But with a penis. And fewer pairs of expensive shoes.
So to have Maura say that she wouldn't really want to be with her? It kind of hurt. Well, not so much hurt her feelings as hurt her pride, but still. (It kind of hurt her feelings too, but she'll never admit it.)
Okay, she's kind of bossy. But that's only because she's right most of the time. And Maura is bossy too, so she has no room to talk. And she's bossy in that kind of subtle way where Jane doesn't realize that she's been bossed around until she's halfway through the registration forms for the damn Massachusetts Marathon that she doesn't actually want to run.
So really, Maura is worse, and the bossy thing shouldn't be a big deal anyway.
And there's the relaxing thing and, yeah, maybe Maura has a point there because she is always working and she doesn't believe in vacations because murderers don't take vacations so why should she but, whatever. Lazing around in the sun on some beach is boring and overrated and skin cancer runs in her family so she really doesn't see the point.
But it's not like she doesn't get out or anything. There's the bar. And there is beer, and that is enough for her. Maybe it's not everybody's idea of rest and relaxation, but if it ain't broke, don't fix it, right?
Maura's reasons just don't fly.
She should be Maura's type.
Maura said she was gorgeous that one time. And if anybody would know, it would be Maura because she's, you know… well, she's pretty. For a girl. If she liked girls. Which she doesn't.
Most of the time.
There was that one thing in college (well, junior college) with Sarah Alexander, but they were both shitfaced and she doesn't remember much, so that doesn't really count.
And there was a moment. With Maura. When they were undercover and Maura was in that teeny tiny outfit and Jane got an eyeful of cleavage and thought "Well, maybe." But, really, it was only like two seconds, so that doesn't count either.
And even if it did count (which it doesn't), she isn't Maura's "type" anyway.
She is so Maura's type. Maura just doesn't know it yet.
A week later, they talk about it.
They are sitting at a booth at the Robber, Maura is nursing her second glass of Chianti and spewing out some really cute science mumbo jumbo, and Jane brings it up.
"I am so your type."
Maura blinks. "…I do not understand your non-sequitur."
"Look, if we were the kind of women who dated other women, we would be dating each other, okay?"
A sip of her wine and a hint of a smile. "Are you asking me out?"
"What? No, Maura, I'm not asking you out."
This was probably not the best time to be in the middle of a swig of her drink.
It took the several minutes to clean up the beer she's sprayed across the table, and Jane hoped that the distraction would divert Maura from their discussion. She had made her point, and thought it best to move on to a more comfortable topic. Like the Red Sox. Or serial killers. Or dead people in general.
"Well, Jane?" Maura asks, expectantly.
So much for making her point and moving on without discussion.
"Why am I not asking you out? Because I don't really do chicks and, last I checked, you were a girl."
Maura smiles. "Really, Jane. Is that all?"
"What do you mean 'is that all'? That's plenty."
"I find your reasoning to be quite inadequate."
Off of Jane's puzzled look, she continues. "Gender seems to be a silly reason to disqualify someone as a potential romantic partner."
"Oh really? 'Cause it seems pretty valid from where I'm sitting."
"You said that if we were lesbians, we would be dating, correct?"
"Well, yeah." She's really starting to wish she hadn't said that.
"So that means that I have traits you desire in a partner."
Jane groans. "Maura."
This is really not how this conversation was supposed to go.
"Seriously, Jane. What are they?"
It's not that she doesn't want the conversation to go this way, she just wasn't expecting it is all.
There's a comfort zone somewhere and she is not in it.
"Come on, Maura. Let it go. Drink your wine." She nudged the glass in her direction and took another sip of her own beer, eyeing Maura warily, lest she say something shocking that would cause a repeat of earlier.
"Okay, if you are too shy, I'll go first."
She takes a sip of her wine and Jane waits.
"Many studies have shown that sexuality is fluid, particularly in women. It is very rare for a person to be exclusively heterosexual or exclusively homosexual, and a persons sexual orientation can change throughout her lifetime."
"That Kinsey scale stuff." She's not a total dumbass. She's seen the movie. And she'd be lying if she said she didn't think what Maura was saying made a whole lot of sense.
Maura takes a deep breath and she looks almost nervous. Which is kind of cute, she thinks.
"Look, Jane. You are my friend. You are the best friend I have ever had, and it seems to me that it would be only natural to segue into something of a more romantic nature. If you want to."
She isn't quite sure what to say to that.
She kind of knew it was coming when Maura brought up the whole "Why aren't you asking me out?" thing, but she hadn't really come up with a response.
Mostly because she doesn't know what she thinks.
Maura is looking at her kind of curiously, kind of like she's anxious and Jane thinks that maybe she should… hold her hand or something? You know, to let her know that she didn't screw up or make things weird or whatever.
Except it kind of is, but Jane won't admit that.
So she grabs Maura's hand.
And they just kind of sit there, looking at each other, neither of them saying anything. Maybe in some situations, that kind of gazing into each others eyes crap would be considered romantic or whatever, but this? This is just awkward.
It's not that she doesn't agree with Maura. She can kinda see her point about love (or whatever) being about the person and the personality and none of the other crap, but she's never liked a girl before. And, if she's being perfectly honest, she still doesn't like girls. But there's Maura, and Maura's somehow different from everybody else and Jane doesn't really know what that means.
She breaks the silence.
"But you're not gay."
"And I'm not gay."
"But you think that we'd be…good together."
"So do you."
She had to give her that one. That particular point is what had gotten her into this whole mess in the first place.
"So we would be, like, each others' exceptions to the rule?"
A slow nod.
"So like… what would happen?"
"You mean sex? I'm sure there are books we could purchase, or if you would rather talk to –"
Jane can't interrupt her soon enough.
"No, no, no. Not sex. I didn't mean sex."
"I would understand if you did. It's a valid concern, given that neither of us has prior experience with homosexual acts."
"Enough with the – enough with all the talk about homosexual acts, okay? We're in public."
"No one is listening to us, Jane."
"We can talk about that stuff later. You know. When we're in a place that's not here. I just meant… what happens now? Like…what changes, you know?"
Maura smiles, that big smile that shows her teeth and makes Jane feel like she'd do anything for her. Like run out in the middle of work day to fetch a non-wrinkled green blouse from Maura's closet. Twice.
"Does this mean that you consent?"
"You don't have to, you know. Just because we're friends does not mean that you should be dishonest in order to avoid hurting my feelings."
She's still holding Maura's hand. She gives it a squeeze and offers what she hopes is a reassuring smile.
She finds that it's kind of hard for her to say. She's never been very good at all of that emotional crap.
"Look, I care about you, alright? I just don't really know what that means."
Maura looks crestfallen and withdraws her hand from Jane's. "Oh."
"NO! No, that's not what I meant. Shit, I suck at this."
Now she just looks confused.
"Okay, I don't know what it means. But I'm willing to find out. I want to find out."
They smile at each other and it's still kind of awkward, but it's kind of romantic too and Jane thinks that maybe, just maybe this might actually work.
"So… now what?"
Maura takes a moment to contemplate an answer, stroking the back of Jane's hand with her thumb.
"We date. You know, we go out places. Drinks, dinner, movies."
"Maura, we already do that."
"We're kind of already dating, aren't we?"
They laugh and it doesn't feel awkward at all. It just feels like them. And that, Jane thinks, she can handle.