A/N: I've always loved Alex and Arizona together. I know that Arizona is gay and never been interested in men, you don't need to flame me in reviews about that fact - but isn't that what A/U fanfiction is for? This first chapter is just a taste to gauge interest. Future updates will be much longer than this one.
This is A/U. It picks up after 7x18.
Disclaimer: Grey's Anatomy and its characters are owned by ABC and not me.
It was a foggy July morning when the small private plane made its final approach toward a rain soaked runway at Boeing Field in Seattle, Washington. Inside the plane, a thirty something blonde sat in her seat staring out the window. Dr. Arizona Robbins hadn't been to Seattle in nearly four years. She did everything in her power to avoid the Emerald City and was successful at it. Most of the time it was easy to avoid Seattle as she spent three of the last four years living and working in Mzuzu, Malawi. However, after almost four years of avoidance, fate was bringing her back.
Arizona tore her eyes away from the window and looked around at the plane's four other occupants. She watched as two identical African toddler boys slept next to each other with their heads resting on each other, mouths open and slight snores coming out of them. She turned to look toward her seatmate whose head was bobbing forward as he was fading in and out of consciousness while he kept one hand rested on the tiny head that was sleeping next to his chest in the Baby Bjorn. As she gazed over her fellow passengers she thought back to the last time she was in Seattle. When she left four years ago she was broken, depressed and alone. The last four years of her life were unexpected to say the least. Four years ago Arizona was living and working in Seattle. She had a fiancée and a newborn daughter. She had a future and she was obscenely happy. Then one day, her fiancée decided that she no longer wanted to be with her. In one day Arizona lost everything – she lost her lover and her daughter. Not being able to stand to live and work in the same space as her ex-lover Arizona ran away. She couldn't work in the same hospital as Calliope Torres anymore. She couldn't watch the child she considered her own grow up without helping to raise her. So Arizona ran back to Malawi where she knew she could make a difference. She knew she could throw herself into her work and help save the lives of countless children. She knew she couldn't get rid of the pain in her heart but she could numb it.
But she didn't run away alone. Two weeks after her return to the clinic in Mzuzu a familiar face knocked on her office door. Her protégé, Alex Karev, also needed to run away from his life in Seattle. After turning in Meredith Grey for altering the Alzheimer's trial he became an outcast and shunned within the hospital. He lost his friends and his home. He needed a new start.
Together, in Africa, they weren't so alone anymore.
It was hard for Arizona not to think about the past as the plane was touching down in Seattle. Her heart was torn. It was true that she did have a lot of happy memories from her time in Seattle but they were overshadowed by the utter devastation that occurred when Callie Torres broke her heart. But also, if things hadn't of happened the way they did she wouldn't have her current life. And her current life made her very happy. She was returning to Seattle a completely different woman. Everyone changes over the course of time. It's human nature to be constantly evolving. Over three years of treating children in one of the least developed countries in the world, was more than just evolving with time. It was deep down to the soul changing.
Arizona felt a hand slip into hers as they waited for the plane to complete its decent. She absentmindedly played with the familiar silver metal band that was in her grasp.
"We're going to be okay, Zo," Alex stated as he brushed a lock of hair out of Arizona's eyes.
Arizona turned to face the man next to her. She nervously bit her lower lip and nodded. "I know. It's just hard, you know?"
"I know. Remember, no one has to know anything we don't want them to know. We're here for Abe, not to talk about our personal lives." Alex gripped her hand tighter as Arizona moved to rest her head on his shoulder.
Arizona slipped into her memories as she held her husband's hand while the plane was landing in Seattle.
Alex was standing in their cramped one bedroom apartment watching Arizona flutter about trying to find the perfect jewelry for the occasion. The Carter Madison Grant Committee could only afford one apartment for their sponsored doctors. When Alex arrived, he was eagerly welcomed into the fold but was also told he'd have to find his own accommodations. Arizona quickly decided that he would move in with her.
"We don't have to do this, Arizona. We can find another way." Alex reasoned with the blonde as she looked incredibly nervous at what the two were about to do.
Arizona picked out the perfect earrings from her jewelry box as she stared into the mirror. Nice clothes were not on the priority list in Malawi but today she made sure that she and Alex were not only dressed in their finest clothes but also with a touch of African inspiration. Alex was in a pair of semi-clean khaki shorts and an African tunic while Arizona found the perfect sundress from a neighbor's shop that she accented with local jewelry and her grandmother's diamond earrings.
Arizona shook her head as she gently inserted the earrings through their respective holes in her head. "The officials made it very clear that Malawi does not allow unwed couples to adopt and I am not letting Abraham and Elijah go to an orphanage and I know you won't either. We've spent the last six months fighting against everything to get them to live, there is no way I'm losing them now. They would get an infection within a week and be dead in two weeks. We're the only option they have." Arizona paused as she picked up her necklace. "Wait, is this because you're having second thoughts? Are you sure you want to do this? I can find someone else if you aren't okay with it."
Alex moved to stand behind Arizona. He took the necklace from her hands and gently moved to put it on her and clasped it behind her neck. "No, you're not finding another husband. You're stuck with me. I love those boys just as much as you do. I love you too. You're my best friend. There's no one else I'd want to enter with into a fake marriage. We'll have no problem making everyone believe in our love and our marriage and when we get back to the U.S. we'll have the perfect divorce."
Arizona smiled as she turned to face Alex. She placed her hand on his chest as she spoke. "I never thought I'd marry a man. But, I'm happy to be marrying you. You're the only man I'd ever want to marry. Now let's go get hitched so we can officially adopt the boys. After three months of fighting the officials about our residency status, I don't want to waste any more time."
Alex held the door open for his future wife, "After you, my lady."
Arizona felt the plane jolt forward as it made contact with the ground. She squeezed Alex's hand tighter as she thought about what they would face now that they were actually in Seattle. This wasn't a social visit for the two pediatric surgeons. Sure, they'd be seeing old friends and colleagues, but they were in Seattle for their medical help. They needed them to help save the life of the little boy who was lying fast asleep across the aisle with his blankie held tight in his arm.