A/N For #lietomelives... Because while Fox may think they've killed our show, we can keep it alive. These characters deserve to have a million stories written about them. But then, I deserve to be able to see Gillian Foster on my screen every damn day and that just ain't happening. *sigh*
Disclaimer: I want to own this show so I can have it run for a hundred seasons. Alas, Fox have the rights and they're a bunch of brain-dead wankers, so I can't make it happen.
Waking Up in a Foreign City
The pillow feels different against her cheek; that's the first thing she notices. The second is the smell of the sheets, a fabric softener different to her own, and the third is the light hitting her face from the wrong side of the room as she forces her eyes open.
Everything is different; she's different. She's not used to waking up in an unfamiliar bed, she's not used to the presence of a man in bed beside her, not since her break up with Dave, and before that, her marriage. She's had relatively few lovers in her life – a steady relationship in college, loyal courtship and marriage to Alec, a relationship with Burns. Apart from a few nights when she was single before her marriage, nights that she doesn't care to remember, she doesn't have one night stands, or start a relationship with sex, or fall into bed easily with a man on the first date.
Something has changed, then, for this to be happening. It's like waking up in a foreign city with no memory of the journey. She can feel the familiar fuzziness that comes with drinking wine the night before, and the addled memory she associates with having drunk too much.
She thinks back to the night before, screwing her eyes up in concentration. They'd been out drinking, celebrating the release of Cal's book. She remembers his jovial mood – he'd even bought a round of drinks. She remembers Ben joining them, catching up on his news; she recalls Loker and Torres having an argument by the bar as she, Cal, and Ben sat in the corner, trying to pretend they couldn't hear; she remembers drinking, and talking, and laughing.
She remembers Loker's sour mood when he returned to the table without Torres, she remembers Cal's failed attempts to cheer him up, the comments that only served to anger him more. She remembers Ben's comments about how good it was to see her again; Loker telling her he needed to get over Ria and move on; Cal telling her she looked lovely.
She remembers a gentle hand on her back, the brush of lips against hers, warmth spreading through her body at his touch as she revelled in the feeling that someone wanted her, that she was desired. She remembers frantic undressing, the exploring of each other's bodies, collapsing with exhaustion beside each other in his bed.
He stirs beside her; cautiously she opens her eyes again, shifts slightly so she can watch him as he turns towards her.
"Hi," he says, with a smile.
A thousand thoughts hurtle through her mind; she can't form any of the words to begin the conversation they're going to have to have, sooner or later. Instead she settles for one word, which will have to be enough, for now.