Disclaimer: I wish, but no, I don't own the characters/show.
The journey home was always the longest stretch of any mission.
This time, however, it's insufferably so after having so much happen and then being forced to sit still.
Kate had taken to pacing like a caged wild cat up and down the aisle, only stopping to rib Henry as he divided his attention between her and his computer, and to check on Will.
Will, who was currently snoring and starting to drool on her designer suit jacket as he slept the flight away.
Though for the life of her she can't be annoyed or wake him, and for the exact same reason that Kate keeps checking on him.
"He's been asleep for a while."
"Yes, with any luck he will stay that way until we land. You should try to sleep yourself, Kate."
"Yeah, afraid that's not gonna happen anytime soon. Too wired."
She nods in sympathy.
"Magnus…we dodged more than a few bullets this time around. We all owe him our asses twice over, but I can't pay off my debt if he's still in danger of losing his."
She nods again, but this time in acknowledgment.
Kate wasn't the only one who wondered if the axe had yet to fall, only the boldest for saying it aloud. They'd almost lost him, a vital member of their team, their family, had lost him, and they shouldn't have been able to get him back.
She'd once told him that there was no such thing as miracles, now she wonders if she should amend that statement.
"All the tests I could run indicate he is out of the woods, Kate, but only time will tell."
Kate nods back and finally seeming to tire of her circuit, settles beside Henry, her nervous energy put to use as Magnus hears him offer to start a two-player game.
As she watches them become engrossed in their play, her eyes move again to the book in her hands. She'd stopped reading about the time Kate had started pacing and had lost her place, but just as she thought she'd found it again the cabin gave a mighty lurch.
"What? What is it?" The man beside her leaps from his seat, eyes wide with panic as he looks around with unseeing eyes. In her peripheral she can see Henry and Kate jump up, but she quickly closes her book and motions at them to stand down before reaching for Will.
"Will, it's just turbulence, you're safe."
His eyes meet hers as her hand connects with his, something in her calm tones and worried eyes reaching him as his breathing slows.
"Magnus- Sorry, I-"
"It's alright, let's just take our seats."
He nods absently, his face a light shade of red as he sits again.
Kate and Henry are still giving her worried looks, but a quick nod of reassurance has them both sit hesitantly as well.
She can't blame them, especially when she sees Will's haunted face as she settles back against her own seat.
"Is it ever enough? I mean, we saved so many people, but there were others…"
She hadn't realized her hand was still in his until he grips it fiercely at the broken end of his reply; she simply squeezes back.
So many had been saved like he said, but as with all disasters there had been casualties. It was a burden that had taken her many years to learn how to accept. There were just as many times she'd wished, however, as a doctor, as a human being, that she'd been able to save more.
"That is something you will have to make peace with yourself, Will, but I promise you, you will not be alone while you do it."
His eyes meet hers at that, searching for something, something she wants to give him but doesn't know what to give. She's not used to not knowing, it is irritating to say the least, but he must find what he's looking for because his grip loosens and his body relaxes somewhat.
She smiles, using her now free hand to reach up and smooth his haphazard hair, "That's my protégé. Now, why don't you try getting some more rest? We'll be landing before you know it."
He nods his acknowledgment, but doesn't immediately lean against his seat, his eyes surveying something in the vicinity of her shoulder.
"Are you gonna dock my pay for drooling on your jacket?"
It's so deadpan, so Will, her Will, she can't help but laugh, he grins in return.
"Perhaps. But since you've already ruined it, I don't see any reason why you can't make use of it again."
His eyebrows rise at her invitation, but everything else about him screams exhaustion, and she knows he's tempted, however timid.
Long seconds pass, however, and she can't help but roll her eyes.
"Come now, Will. I would hope my shoulder isn't that repulsive, with exception to your drool."
She gets a little laugh for her efforts, but the challenge is clear, and she knows he can't help but accept. She might not be Dr. William Zimmerman, but she has some experience at reading people.
And with that he leans against her once more, settling in with a sigh.
It's not minutes and he is lost to Morpheus.
Smiling, she opens her book once more, turning to her place with one hand as the other moves to interlace her fingers with his, Will's only reaction is to move closer.
And suddenly, the flight didn't seem nearly as long.