Erin: I need Covert Affairs back on! Auggie and Annie have to get together! This wait is going to kill me! It already is and we're only on day three!
Disclaimer – I do not own Covert Affairs. If I did that would just be awesome!
Guilt, Lies, And Pain
Two months. It had been two months since Auggie came back from Africa. Actually it had been one month and twenty-nine days. But who's counting? Surly not Annie. She didn't know what happened there and she didn't want to know. She never asked and Auggie hadn't said much though every time he did try she found a way to flee.
She hadn't realized it but she had been distancing herself from him. At first socially. She tried she really tried to keep things as they were. He was her best friend and she couldn't bear the thought of losing him. Yet every time they went for drinks she found it harder and harder to keep up the deception. He had been the one person she never had to lie to. She never had to wear a mask or fake a smile. She could just be herself. Not anymore. Now everything she said was careful like she was walking through a minefield. It used to be she could talk freely, it always came flowing out with no effort. Now it was a constant struggle. She had to be that way at work, deceive people, but with her best friend she shouldn't need to. Soon as much as she tried to go back to the way things where she found she couldn't do it anymore coming up with excuses not to go to events, out for drinks, go to lunch, dinner, be alone at all.
And then at work. Instead of going to Auggie she now went to Stu who was at first unsure about her intention but now helped her out without question. It was only the occasional thing at first, a question, a little Intel. Than if she didn't need Auggie in particular she always went to Stu. She was gradual about it making sure Auggie was none the wiser. She made it seem like she was just getting the hang of those whole spy thing. Still he is her handler and there were times when she had to interact with him.
Sitting in a chair by his desk they two of them where going over everything for her latest mission. Annie focused all her energy on the task at hand because if she let her mind wander even for a second she became consumed by the man sitting next to her.
"Annie, is something wrong?" Auggie asked her out of the blue. His face filled with concern.
She froze wondering if she let her mask slip even for a second. Quickly brushing that doubt away she shook her head. "I'm fine." The look on his face told her he didn't believe her. Placing a hand on top of his she squeezed. "Really I am. Why are you so worried? Are you okay?"
"Yeah, yeah, I don't know. Guess I'm just a little tried. Joan has me working on this data we received and it's just lines and lines of endless code. I guess my brains a little fired," he responded.
She played him. She did what the CIA taught her and turned it around on him. And Auggie never suspected a thing because this was Annie and she would never play him. "How about I get you a coffee? My treat?"
Auggie smiled at her so sweetly and the guilt almost killed her. "I don't know what I'd do without you."
Getting up to retrieve the coffee she found herself shaking, tears welled in her eyes. She was lying to her best friend. She was playing him like an asset and he didn't even know because he trusted her. Every day she destroyed that trust. Little by little she was destroying everything they ever had and she didn't know how to stop.
Coming back up with his coffee just the way he liked it Annie's eyes fell on Joan who stood above the bullpen. She gestured for her to come into her office. Annie briefly wondered what it was about, maybe the Op. Holding up the coffee she pointed to Auggie saying she was going to quickly drop it off. Joan nodded turning back to her office.
Rushing over to Auggie she placed his coffee down. "Ten o'clock. Joan wants to see me."
"Well than hurry off wouldn't want to get you in trouble," he joked picking up the coffee.
"Dread the thought," she joked back before whirling around heading straight for the office.
Stepping inside Joan sat back behind her desk. "Sit down Annie." Complying she moved to sit in the chair directly in front of her. "I'm going to ask you a question and I need you to be perfectly honest with me. Think before you answer, understand?"
Annie suddenly felt very nervous. "Yes."
"Do you want Stu to be your handler?" Joan asked deadly serious.
Annie froze in place. There was no way to hide the shock. She had been so careful. She never let her cover slip even for a minute until she was at home. At least she thought she had but apparently not. Taking a deep breath Annie stood up beginning to pace as everything filled her mind.
Joan sat back patiently waiting. She had known for a while now something was going on with Annie. She had hoped it would blow over but whatever had happened after her mission to Sweden it became clear this wasn't going away. Now she waited. She wasn't going to rush Annie's answer. This was too important to rush so she let Annie pace around the room trying to answer her question.
Stopping to stare out the window across the bullpen to Auggie's office she had a clear view of him working away. She didn't know what to do. She didn't want to lose him and yet everyday he slipped more and more through her fingers. The more she tried to hold on the more everything fell away. She had destroyed what they had and now she had to decide; should she, could she, repair the relationship they once had into some sort of good working relationship or should Stu become her handler? If she failed at fixing her relationship with Auggie it could destroy her career and possibly get people killed. If she switched to Stu the guilt would eat her alive and she would destroy any friendship they had left. Truth was there was only one choice but she didn't want to pick it. This was about her job not her personal life. Locking her emotions away she picked the best choice for her work and for the future lives that would rest in her hands.
Annie turned around her face emotionless as she answered, "Yes."
Joan nodded once dismissing her. Annie struggled to breathe as she quickly raced out of the DPD to the bathrooms. Locking herself away in one of the stalls she struggled to compose herself. She couldn't fall apart not yet. Only a few hours left and she could go home and drink away the guilt, the hurt, and forget she just threw her best friend in the garbage.
Straightening up she smoothed out her clothes, her hair, and walked out like nothing was wrong.
Staring at the blank screen of her television Annie drained another beer tossing the bottle onto her coffee table which was now cluttered with five empty bottles. Reaching down to the case at her feet she opened the last bottle of the six pack she had bought on her way home. As she was about to take another sip a knock on the door sounded.
Dragging herself up the couch. Danielle just didn't know when to quit. She was glad to be back in the guest house and all but that also caused the problem of Danielle trying to comfort her when all she wanted to do was drink herself away for one night.
"Danielle seriously? I love you and everything but I really just want to be left," she yanked the door opened, "alone…"
Standing in front of her was not Danielle. No standing in front of her was her ex-best friend.
"Why?" he asked one simple word.
Annie couldn't even look at him. The look on his face was that of someone crushed and broken and destroyed and it was all her fault. "It doesn't matter. Please just go."
Annie made to shut the door but Auggie slammed his hand onto the wood forcing it back open. "It does matter! It matters to me! I just need to know why. What did I do? Please tell me. I'll do anything."
Annie tried to stay strong but the tears started to come. "This isn't about you. This is about me. I can't do this anymore. Please just go."
Annie turned to leave but Auggie wasn't going to let her. Grabbing her arm he forced her to look at him. "You can't do what?"
Annie yanked her arm from his grip. "I can't lie anymore! I'm so sick of lying! Of playing you like a fool!" Annie wanted to hurt him. She wanted to push him away. She was tired so tired.
"No! I want the truth!" He followed her inside. "What happened? What happened?"
Tears streamed down her face she wiped them away. Taking a long sip from her beer her inhibitions where pretty much gone. "I was stupid. I am stupid and blind and a fool. Did I mention an idiot? Well I am one!"
Auggie now in the guest house could clearly smell the beer. "Are you drunk?"
Annie laughed hollowly. "Yes, yes I am. At work I can be a professional but at home I just want to get drunk and forget. So get lost and leave me alone to do just that!"
Auggie's face softened. He realized that her lashing out at him, pushing him away was because she hurt. She hurt so much that she was falling apart. "Annie please, explain to me what's going on. What happened?"
Annie collapsed onto the couch. "What happened? What happened was Danielle opened my eyes. She made me see what was right in front of my face and I wish to God that she had never said a word."
Auggie slowly maneuvered through the room following her voice to the couch trying not to trip and fall flat on his face. Feeling the arm rest he moved to sit down positioning himself to stare at her. "To what?"
Annie continued on like she never heard his question, "She was with me on one Op. Only one and she figured it out. She knows your CIA." Auggie shocked said nothing. "She guessed. She said my voice changes a little when I talk to you." She snorted. "One day and she figures out I'm in love with you. But it doesn't matter. Too little too late." Auggie couldn't believe his ears. Annie was in love with him? Chugging the last of her beer Annie tossed it onto the table. "Now get out."
Annie stood up to go crash on her bed when suddenly arms grabbed her shoulders pulling her into his embrace. His face buried in her hair, his arms tight around her body as if to let go would mean death.
"Stupid. You are so stupid," he muttered. "All you had to do was listen. Let me tell you about Africa. All you had to do was stop running." He laughed at how idiotic this whole thing was. "I went to Africa to tell Parker that I was moving on." Annie couldn't understand what was going on. "I spoke with an eye doctor to see if maybe there was some snowballs chance in hell if I could ever see again. He told me," Auggie paused, "he told me that there was nothing to be done." He pulled back his unseeing eyes looking directly into hers. "That's when I realized it was time to move on. I was holding onto a past that was gone and Parker she was another thing holding me back. Like the car. I had to cut all ties. I had to move on so I could look forward to my future." He cupped her face. "My future with you."
Tears streamed down her face. This couldn't be real. But it was. It was real. Clutching onto his the front of his shirt she broke down sobbing. She cried so hard she could barely breathe.
"I love you," she gasped out between waves of sobs.
Auggie laughed out of sheer relief. "I love you too."
Auggie held her stroking her back soothingly until the tremors that racked her body calmed and she was able to breathe again. Taking her face in his hands he wiped away the tears before leaning down and capturing her lips. Annie melted into him her arms wrapping around his neck.
Pulling away he took her hand. "Let's get you to bed. You're going to have a killer headache in the morning."
Tucking her in he leaned down pressing another kiss to her lips before getting up. As he was about to go Annie's hand reached out grabbing his sleeve.
"Stay. Please," she begged.
Auggie smiled softly nodding. Slipping off his shoes he climbed into bed behind her. His arms wrapped around her and soon the rhythmic sounds of her breathing told him she had passed out. Burying his face in the crook of her neck his eyes drifted closed knowing that tomorrow he would be spending the morning helping Annie deal with a very nasty hangover.
Erin: I hope that when Auggie goes to Africa it doesn't work out with him and Parker. I just want her to go away! Ugh! Guys please review I love to hear from you.