A/N: Prequel #2 set after Friends, Lovers, or Nothing but before That's Beautiful to Me. Also set during S6. Hannah's deeply involved, so be warned. Based off of Taylor Swift's Haunted.
Next in the series of prequels: Show Me a Little Shame by Ben Harper
Case after case, she'd been sitting there alone. It was becoming a common occurrence. Post-case drinks used to be their thing. But lately, it's been her thing. Knowing she won't see him again until he comes calling with a new case, she drinks away the memories of the line they crossed months ago.
But her heart skips when she sees him on the sidewalk outside of Founding Fathers. Her eyes follow him in but she looks back down at her drink when she sees her behind him. She wants to pretend she doesn't see them, and when he doesn't spot her at the end of the bar, they take their own seats and order drinks. She watches them and for a bit, she feels like she should look away, not wanting to intrude, but she can't.
She knows how much he's taught her and its enough that she can read him now. She could tell that every time he stepped into the lab or anywhere near her, it hurt him. He thought what had happened between them was a mistake. And maybe it was.
She knows she's losing him. He's with her now. Just before they both left, she had finally figured out what she wanted. But she couldn't tell him. She didn't know how.
And now, a man she had seen lurking around the bar for a while has taken the barstool next to her. Chatting her up, she looks into the man's brown eyes. They're not like his. Not deep, not loving. This man is only looking for a good time. But she thinks maybe this man can take away the pain for a little while so she lets him stay, lets him attempt to charm her. But no one's charm could match up to her partner's.
And when he finally notices she's here, when he sees her talking to another man, his eyes darken and meet hers. The intensity in his gaze is haunting, something that will visit her in her dreams at night. She turns her attention back to the stranger. She's not one to play jealous games, but she can't help it tonight.
She wants to tell him what she decided so long ago, but he's happy with Hannah. But she sees the symbolic ring on her finger. And her heart seems to metaphorically stop.
She doesn't know why she brushes off the feeling like it's nothing. She knows he couldn't love her like he loves her. Loved her.
So she holds onto the feelings she had long ago, when they righted wrongs Zeus made by splitting up soul mates.
It's nothing. She knows that. Because she knows him well enough to know that when he says forever, he means it. But he said forever to her first.
She avoids eye contact with him as she walks by them. She doesn't see her, but he does. He wants to stop her. He wants to say something, explain, or change the course she's on. But he says nothing and turns back to his fiancée.
And so she holds onto nothing as she leaves with the stranger.
When he watches her get into a cab with the man, it takes all of his willpower to turn his attention back to his fiancée. He wants to finish what he started with her long ago. But he's with Hannah now. He crossed that line and then took a few steps back, letting the line come back into play.
He meant every word he ever said to her. But he's still watching her walk away from everything they thought they had and he knows he can never say to Hannah what he's said to her. It would haunt him. Because what happens between them is theirs.