Pairing: Jo Lupo/Zane Donovan
Timeline: 4.03 - All the Rage
A/N: Okay, so not a fix-it, per se, but Jo looked so lost at the end of the episode and I couldn't just leave it like that.
Written for: eureka_tag LJ
Feedback: is a must!
Disclaimer: Not mine. I play with other people's toys.
First Posted: July 27, 2010


"Good luck." Jo calls after Jack as he leaves GD.

It's been a long day and what she really wants to do is go home, but her hone doesn't exist, at least, not the way she remembers it, so she goes back to her office. There's a cot that pulls out of the wall. Pathetic, maybe, but at least her office isn't something the same but different, so it doesn't act as a reminder of things she had and doesn't anymore.

"Hey, Lupo." Jo's clearly not fully in control of her reflexes yet as she physically staggers backwards when Zane looks up from her couch. She takes a deep breath and closes her eyes for a second. Once her heart stops raising so fast she's afraid she's going to have a heart attack, she locks her jaw in resolve and continues inside.

"Donovan." She nods in his direction and sits behind her desk. "Can I help you?"

"Shouldn't you be home by now?" He asks instead of answering her. She narrows her eyes at him.

"So what're you doing here, then?" He shrugs casually and she grits her teeth. She really hates this new Zane and how he still knows how to push her buttons. It just isn't fair. "If I find one thing out of place..." She warns, glairing murderously at him. He doesn't flinch though, and instead he smiles at her in the very way he always used to. Her chest aches a little more.

"I didn't go through your stuff, Chief Lupo."

"The what are you doing here?" She grates out. She can't tell if she wants to flirt back or slam his head into the wall until his skull cracks and it's tearing her apart.

"Waiting to see you."

"So, let me get this straight. You're in my office at-" she glances at her clock, "-Eight-thirty after a day of lockdown in GD, waiting for me even though I should be at home, relaxing by now."

His grin just grows wider. "You got it, Jo-Jo."

Her head snaps up as her mind freezes. "What-" Her voice cracks and she winces. "What did you just call me?"

"Uh..." She's surprised and grateful when Zane looks away. "Jo-Jo? Sorry, forget it. It was a joke."

Lupo closes her eyes again and tries to focus on her breathing. "Yeah. Fine. Don't do it again." Swallowing hard, she looks at him again.

"No problem." He says quickly.

"So," she says after she's got her emotions under control, "Assuming that I believe you about what you're doing here, it still doesn't tell me why you're here."

"Oh. Yeah." Suddenly, his self-assurance dissipates and he scratches the back of his head. "I just..." At that moment, he looks so much like her Zane, the one only she got to see once the day's panic was over. She just can't deal with it.

"You just what?" Jo pushes, crossing her arms.

"I just wanted to say thank you." She blinks as he looks down at his hands clasped in his lap. "You know, for not killing me. You've been wanting to shoot me since my first day here, not that I blame you, and the RSS would've been the perfect excuse. So... thanks."

At a loss for what to say, she nods sharply. She's really sick of this feeling. "No problem."

"Good." He nods back, and they sit there dumbly with only the hum from her computer screen keeping the room from being swallowed by the silence. "So now that you've said that..."

"Right." He shoots up, stumbling a little as he flies to the door. "Uh..."

"What?"

"See, Dr. Parrish already left and I kinda screwed up my arrangement with Dani..."

"What are you talking about, Zane?" She asks exasperatedly, "And who's Dani?"

"The blonde with the reproductive biology doctorate. Our date" Jo flinches, "didn't exactly go well and now I'm out a daily ride two and from work. I used to carpool with her." He explains. She tilts her head to the left in confusion.

"Why do you need to carpool? You have a licence."

He squints at her, looking at Jo like she's lost her mind. "Since when? You had it revoked indefinably last year."

"Right. Yeah. I forgot." She scrambles, trying to cover her slip-up. "But what does that have to do with me?" She deflects.

"Can you give me a ride home?"

"You're kidding."

"No?" He smiles playfully at her. "Please? C'mon, Lupo. It's on your way home, and you know it. You're the one who had me assigned practically next door so you could keep an eye on me. I promise to behave myself." She's about to tell him to get lost when he continues, "I'll hold my breath until you say yes." Those words, more than anything else he could have said, cut so deep she almost bursts into tears right then.

"Fine." Lupo agrees just to get away from him as soon as possible. She stands and walks briskly past him and out of her office. He has to sprint to catch up to her, but even that isn't enough to make her smile.

"Thanks, Jo. I owe you one."

"Yeah, you do."

"Look, as a thank you, maybe I can take you out to dinner sometime?" He looks at her flirtatiously. "Maybe a little dancing afterwards? And if the night goes well, maybe we can try out another sort of dancing and you can explain that engagement thing to me?"

Zane's joking and she knows it; this Zane would rather jump off the roof of GD then propose even thinking about marriage, least of all to Jo Lupo. But she responds anyways; stopping short, waiting for him to look at her and when he does, she pulls her arm back and punches him squarely between the eyes. He goes down hard and she continues out of the building, feeling more at peace then she has since they returned to 2010.