Spin Me Round Just to Pin Me Down
Author's Note and Disclaimer:I don't own any of the Warehouse 13 characters or Jane Eyre. Title is from Mumford & Sons, "Home," which is just amazing.
Of course he'd fall in love first.
The man gets some kind of sick joy out of outdoing her and she is done with all of it.
But here they are. They just saved the world (again) and she might have almost died and he looks at her and there's that thing in his eyes that she only sees when he looks at cookies or his mother and suddenly she knows. And he knows she knows. He shrugs a small shrug and lifts his hands as if to say that he couldn't help it.
He could have helped it. He could've prevented it. She has, so why couldn't he?
Of the two of them, he's always been the more lovable one and she's still managed to resist and dammit, why does he always get to go first?
Her jumbled thoughts don't stop her from turning up at his door two nights later. She knocks and he answers and they haven't spoken in the past forty-eight hours and they both suck at all of this kind of stuff. Talking, not talking, love, whatever. She especially has some sort of aversion to emotion (it'd be easy to blame Sam, but well, that was a long time ago and she is the one who let herself get this way).
She walks in and sits down on his bed and he quietly shuts the door before sitting next to her.
She waits for him to apologize. He's thrown everything off and they've finally gotten back to normal after her departure and return and his mother and the whole Jinx situation and everything is good, so why now?
But he doesn't apologize.
"What?" he asks, after she stares at him for several minutes.
"'What?' That's it?"
"What are you expecting?"
"I don't know, how about a 'Sorry for screwing everything up, Myka?'"
She exhales. "Fine. How about this. What do you think you're doing, Pete?"
He shrugs again. (Once more and she might slap him.) "Not lying anymore?"
She thinks about that for a moment before meeting his gaze. "You don't love me," she says quietly.
"How do you know?" he whispers back.
"I know because I don't want you to," she says, as she ignores the tears pricking at her eyes.
"You don't want me to?" he asks, his tone disbelieving.
"I've been down this road before and I've seen how partner and friend and boyfriend and love can all blur together and I barely survived losing Sam and I don't think I could even breathe if I lost you," she says, the words pouring out fast and solemn. Her eyes are wide when she realizes everything she just said. His are too. She's not usually this honest and she doesn't ever allow anyone (even him) to see her damage, but there it all is.
It's too much.
So she stands up and walks out but leaves the door open.
She's probably in love with him too. How could she not be, right?
He makes her laugh all the time and he puts her needs before his own every single day and he's got that stupid goofy grin that he does when he's being gross and pervy and she actually looks forward to seeing it, so yeah. She loves him too.
She does some quick math. He loves her. She loves him. And that equals . . .
"What am I doing?" she asks aloud, as she smooths down her already meticulously straightened hair.
The fact that she's even entertaining this idea freaks her out, because she is actually considering it. Thinking of the pros and the cons, deciphering what it all will mean. And if he was standing in her hotel room right now, watching her pace back and forth, he would try to calm her down and tell her to stop overthinking this whole thing.
But that's what she does. She overthinks. And then double checks and then overthinks again. It's a process. And the strangest thing is that he knows her process. Knows her well enough to figure out when she's overthinking and double-checking her overthinking. He gets all of it and yet he is still diving head first into the inky black abyss, hoping she'll be there next to him in the darkness.
She's been in darkness before. It's hollow and terrifying and so, so lonely. But maybe it doesn't have to be. Maybe the loneliness is what makes it so hollow and terrifying and if you take that out of the equation. . . She's never considered traveling through all of it with someone else.
So she knocks on his hotel door, ignoring the déjà vu feeling that is creeping over her.
Because I don't want you to echoes in her ears, but she wills herself to forget it.
He opens on the second knock and his hair is slightly mussed and she realizes that she woke him up, but she doesn't really care.
He forces his eyes open a bit more and when he's looking at her, really looking at her, she steps forward and kisses him. When his arms instantly wrap around her as if they've been there forever, she has trouble remembering why she even had to think about this at all.
"So. That happened," he says a little while later, as they stand just inside his doorway.
"Yeah," she says, trying to mask the uncertainty in her voice. She may be uncertain but she also can't stop smiling and it's making her nauseous and unsettled and happy all at the same time.
"Do you really want this to happen?" she whispers to him, as the unsettled feeling starts to overpower the happy one.
"I think it's already happening," he says back.
"What about all the problems and the misunderstandings and what happens when this spills over into our casework and. . ."
"We'll figure it out. We always do."
He's right. They haven't met a challenge yet that they haven't been able to conquer.
So she takes a few steps closer and looks right into his eyes and he probably thinks she's going to kiss him again, but instead she runs her fingertips over his lower lip.
She nods slowly.
The third time she wakes up in his room, she can't remember where she is. She squints into the darkness and tries to get her bearings, and it's only when she recognizes that there is a lump (who may be the love of her life) lying next to her that she figures it out.
They are together now. As in, together together.
And no one knows except them. (Well, Leena might know. She has to think that with all of the changes that have been happening beneath the surface that her aura is changing too. And maybe his is as well. And maybe Leena has figured the whole thing out and that makes her breathing speed up a bit.)
He moves a little next to her and groans before tugging on her elbow, unsettling the arm that was propping her up so that she crashes down into him. Immediately, he wraps his arms around her and buries his head into the space between her chin and her collarbone. It's charming, but it's also really uncomfortable.
"Pete. . ." she says quietly.
"Myka," he automatically responds.
"I can't sleep here. . ."
"But you sleep here now," he interrupts, and she's not sure he's fully awake.
"No, I mean I can't sleep here, like this," she says, doing her best to gesture to his position mostly on top of her.
That seems to make him wake up a little and he sits up. "Whaddya mean?" he asks, rubbing his eyes. "Here?" he asks, pointing to the bed.
She sits up too and turns her body around so that she is facing him. "No, not here. I mean I can't sleep with you clutching onto me so tightly."
He nods as if he understands, but he looks really tired and a little hurt (which could just be from the late nights they've been keeping).
She doesn't want to take any chances though, so she leans forward and places her right cheek directly next to his right one. She is perfectly positioned to whisper into his ear, and she says, "I like sleeping here."
"Good," he responds, his hand reaching up, his fingers tangling in her hair. "Because you're not going to be sleeping anywhere else."
He's getting all possessive and normally she hates that, but here in this moment, she doesn't mind. And that's mainly because his fingers are doing really strange and wonderful things to her scalp and she's pushing him backwards and then leaning down to kiss him in response and they are really going to have to be more quiet if they want to keep this whole thing to themselves.
This thing, it spills over into their casework. And they don't figure it all out right away.
(She hates to say she called it, but. . .)
They're arguing about something she can't even remember and she hates when they fight and it's especially difficult now because they're fighting at work and after work and in the spaces in between and it's getting messy.
Not that she ever thought it would be simple. Neither of them signed up for simple, but this is just . . . hard.
She stays in her own room that night. And then the next one. By night three, he knocks on her door.
He sits on her bed and says, "I'm not leaving till we work this out."
She tired and doesn't even know where to start. But she sits down next to him, because this is where the whole "never meeting a challenge we can't conquer" thing kicks in.
"Okay, so we work it out."
"Okay," she sighs. "I have to be honest. I don't even know what we're fighting about anymore."
"We're fighting about me and you and you not trusting me."
"I trust you."
"Right. . ." he says.
"You trust me with work things. Handling artifacts, tracking down killers, that kind of stuff. But you don't trust me with yourself," he states.
And she gets it now. She's closed off. Still. He's trying to get through and he has in many ways. But not completely; she hasn't let him into the farthest corners of her heart, the ones where years of disappointment and emotional baggage have taken up residence. And she knows she needs to . . . she knows she wants to.
So she thinks for a moment and then begins. "My dad gave me my first book, did you know that? Eliose. It's about a little girl who lives in the New York Plaza hotel. I would pour over her adventures hour after hour, wishing my life could be more like hers. That I could have her kinds of adventures. My dad would smile and say. 'Myka, you have no idea of the adventures that wait for you. Ones far beyond some hotel walls.' And he was right. I see miraculous things every day. I save the world every single week with my best friend."
He nods and doesn't say anything.
"And I've realized something lately. I wouldn't even want to have any of these adventures if I didn't have you beside me, experiencing them with me," she states. It's not a proclamation of love, she knows that. But it is something, the best she knows how to do at this point.
(It's more than she would have ever been able to do before. He's changing her and she's letting him and they might be growing, like those people on the covers of self-help books always encourage. And if that's true, then she can't help but feel that they are growing together, intertwining and weaving together and becoming, well, inseparable.)
His eyes are shining and he smiles when he says, "You might love me."
She smiles back. "Maybe."
Los Angeles is bright and glamorous and nothing like either of them, so naturally, they get married there.
It's a normal case. A Thursday. Mostly sunny, partially overcast. They catch the suspect (one Mr. Michael Stein) and find the artifact (William Shakespeare's quill) and stop the crime (plagiarism—yeah, it's been a slow work week) and they actually have some time to kill before their flight home so they walk together down San Vincent Boulevard. She's window shopping while he's imitating movie stars (his Clint Eastwood is especially hilarious and horrible), when he stops suddenly and looks up. Her arm is looped through his, so she stops as well, following his eye line.
And she reads, "Belladonna Weddings: Same Day Marriage."
She looks back at him and he's got that boyish expression that he gets when he sees something he wants but isn't sure how to ask for it.
"You have got to be kidding," she says.
"Why not?" he asks.
She thinks of Artie, Claudia, Leena, her parents, his mom. None of them even know about their relationship. They haven't been honest with them and shouldn't they at least be present for this huge step?
But when she looks back at him, wide-eyed and hopeful and insistent and mature, he looks less like a little boy and more like the man she's going to spend the rest of her life with and she knows what she is going to do.
(There have always been a million reasons not to with the two of them, but when he touches the small of her back as he lets her walk through a doorway first or when she stays up late to make him cookies or when they fight with everything in them to save the other, none of the reasons not to matter anymore.)
"I'm not changing my last name," she says and he smiles the biggest grin she has ever seen.
"And don't think I didn't notice that you didn't actually propose to me," she adds.
He looks intently at her and says, "I want to marry you and I don't want to wait."
He's looking at her as if she was the most desirable thing in the entire world and really, at one point in their long history, she was skilled at saying no to him. But now, well now, she honestly doesn't want to. "So why wait," she says, and she actually laughs out loud a little through her smile.
"Yes!" he says and he raises his fists up in the air as if the Cleveland Browns have just won the Superbowl. He's gotten her to agree to marry him (a pretty big feat) in a twenty-four-hour chapel no less (an even bigger feat) and she's not even scared (he might be doing the impossible now), so she thinks that he probably has won. And he takes her hand, pulling her inside.
The application is too long and the chapel is too small and she never thought she'd be dressed in a pair of jeans for one of the most important days of her life. But then again, they have always been good at paperwork and her jeans and his hoodie is just them in their truest form and why not marry your best friend when you are the most yourself?
So they do.
They have to catch the Red Eye flight, which means their "reception" dinner is peanuts and diet coke and their wedding night consists of watching reruns of "Three's Company" on the tiny televisions on the seats in front of them. But they push back the armrest and she curls up against him and even though they both can't get over how different the platinum bands feel wrapped around their ring fingers, everything seems luxurious and definite and perfect.
They fall asleep and only wake up when the attendants turn on the overhead lights.
"Good morning, wife," he says, as he stirs.
"Mm. Morning, husband," she replies, not quite opening her eyes.
And it should feel weird (it does on some level), but it also feels normal. She's not sure how something that has been true for less than ten hours can feel like the way it's always been, but she decides that maybe it's just that everything is finally the way it should have always been. And maybe through all the twists and turns and detours, they just needed a bit of course correction to get to here.
They're late to breakfast, because hello, honeymoon, but no one even notices when they enter. Claudia is buried in her latest techie gadget and Artie still reads the paper in the morning and Leena is setting out food. They exchange a look and sit down at opposite sides of the table.
"Can you pass the orange juice?" Claudia asks after a few minutes of eating in silence.
Myka hands her the pitcher and Claudia shrieks out, "What is that?"
Everyone looks up then.
"What is what?" Artie asks, calmly.
Claudia points at Myka's exposed left hand, her mouth open but no words coming out.
Myka looks at him and bites back a smile. "Um, Pete and I. . ."
". . . got married yesterday," he finishes for her.
No one says anything for a minute. And then another.
Finally Claudia whispers, "Artie, get your tesla."
Two hours later they've been searched and prodded and poked and searched again.
And much to the surprise of the disbelieving threesome, they haven't been affected by an artifact.
But Claudia's eyes are still almost-scared and Leena is in shock and Artie doesn't have a snarky comeback and it seems that with two soft spoken vows in an LA chapel they have managed to turn the world of Univille and the Warehouse upside down.
She finally can't stand the silence anymore and says, "Artie, do you have any cases for us?"
Artie nods and hands them a manila folder, before turning and walking out of the room.
"I'll be taking inventory," Claudia says, awkwardly before following. Claudia hates inventory.
"Dishes. . ." Leena states quietly as she begins clearing the table.
He shoots her a look and she nods, following him out of the room.
"Well, that went well?" he says, after they are in the car. "Where to?" he asks gesturing to the folder.
She opens it. "Aberdeen. Something about people turning into liquid and then reforming again. . . ." she says, skimming the file. "They're gonna get over this, right?" she asks quickly, the shocked look of Claudia and Leena and even Artie's faces burned into her mind.
"Sure. I'd say within ten to fifteen years. . ."
"Myka, they just need time. I mean, it was surprising to us, right?"
"Right. . ."
"So, they just need to adjust. We need to give them that."
She nods and thinks for a moment, as he puts the car in drive and heads towards Aberdeen.
"I thought we would need more time to adjust, but it just seems easy," she says.
He shrugs (but this time it doesn't annoy her). "We know each other. I mean, you already know that I take my socks off with my toes in the middle of the night and kick them down to the bottom of the bed. I probably have three or four pairs down there under the covers but you don't seem to mind. It's why I married you."
She stares at him for a moment before his eyes crinkle up into a smile and she bursts out laughing.
With one fluid motion he pulls the car over, puts it into park, unbuckles his seatbelt and kisses her. She doesn't react at first because it all happened so fast, but then he exhales against her mouth and she can feel the air from his lungs entering into hers, reaching every part of her, and she almost loses all of her carefully constructed composure.
She is always composed. But they are sitting in their parked car on the side of the road and it's day two of their new everything together, so she decides why the hell not?
She kisses him back and feels the corners of his mouth turn up against her lips and she thinks this may be her favorite of all of his smiles.
She's always loved the first line of the final chapter of Jane Eyre.
"Reader, I married him," Jane says, as if it is the simplest and most natural thing in the world, the decision she was always going to make, the path she was always going to follow.
She is no Jane and he is no Mr. Rochester (thank God), but their journeys have always been similar, haven't they? Minus the whole crazy-wife-in-the-attic scenario, of course.
Only if she really thinks about it, she decides that Jane had to make some hard choices before she ended up at happiness.
Her own choices may not have been as difficult but they have still been choices. Choosing to join the Warehouse. Choosing to let go of the past. Choosing him. She did; she chose him. And he chose her.
And that's really all it comes down to, isn't it? It's just as simple as Jane's words and she thinks it's beautiful. In the entire world, all the billions and billions of people, they chose to do this, all of it, together.
She looks at him, his brow furrowed as he battles Claudia in the latest Call of Duty game.
"Oh, come on!" he shouts, as Claudia kills him again.
Claudia laughs and says, "If you can't handle yourself, Lattimer, maybe you should just give it up."
"Never!" he responds, beginning another round.
"Wait," Claudia says. "I need sustenance before I destroy you again." She hops off the couch and heads to the kitchen.
"You wish!" he says before looking back at her and grinning. "What?" he asks.
She just smiles back. "Nothing. Make sure you watch your left side. She's constantly sneaking up on your left while distracting you with her grenades."
He looks at her with wonder and shakes his head a little before saying, "You- you're amazing."
It's a lazy Sunday afternoon and she's watching her husband and one of her best friends battle it out in a video game and it's such a small, almost trivial thing, but she is happy.
"I have my moments," she says, leaning forward a bit. He reaches out and rubs his thumb gently over her cheekbone, his other fingers brushing against her chin, when Claudia walks back in.
"Save it, you two," she remarks. "I've got a Lattimer to take down. Again."
He turns back to the game, but not before winking at her.
A few rounds later, she goes upstairs to take a nap. She's almost completely asleep, her conscious reality becoming a blur, when she feels his side of the mattress dip down and his arms wrap around her.
She snuggles back into him and says, "Did you win?"
"Nah, she killed me three more times."
"Why aren't you still playing?"
"Why would I? You're up here."
She rolls over to face him and his big brown eyes are staring right back at her.
"You might love me," she says, her words mirroring his own from a year (or was it two? the time goes by so fast) ago.
He nods and kisses her. "Maybe."
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