Summary: Set a little over a year after the crash. Clearing out an old bookshelf, Mark happens upon a DVD he barely even remembers creating. He knows he shouldn't, he knows he'll suffer the consequences afterward, but he plays it anyway. He'll do anything for one last glimpse of her, even if it means destroying himself in the process.

Rating: M

Warnings: Sex, language, implied character death.

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He should have remembered the second he picked up the DVD, after finding it wedged between two old paperbacks he never finished reading. He should have put it bak the second he glanced at the scribbled words across the top half of the disc. Feeling lonely? The handwriting was unmistakable, and the message didn't leave much to the imagination. It was straightforward, clear. There was no hidden meaning. There was no excuse for him to put that disc in the DVD drive. …Unless, on some level, he wanted to watch. Maybe that's what happened, he tells himself later. Maybe… Maybe I just wanted to watch. Maybe.

Hell. He knew he wanted to watch. There was no maybe about it.

But he also knew watching would tear him apart.

And yet he did it anyway.

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For when I'm out of town or stuck at work really late, she'd explained. Her voice giddy with illicit excitement, and it reminded him of the way they began. This will tide you over till I come home.

He smiled at the word 'home.' It was still so new, so fresh. His smile widened to a dirty smirk. I have porn for that, you know.

She'd raised her eyebrows, stepping closer and taking his glass of wine out of his hands as if to punish him. I'm sorry, she began, but are you trying to tell me, Mark, that porn is better than this? Her lips had curved into a seductive smile, and she'd moved even closer, rubbing her pelvis against his in a less-than-subtle manner. Are you trying to tell me watching some girl you don't know fuck another stranger is better than watching me fuck you?

He'd shut up after that—especially when her hands had started unbuttoning his pants—and gone along more than willingly with her plan. She'd teased him the next day about being sore; maybe he had been a little too willing, after all. Neither of them regretted it; least of all him…

Until now.

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It was before they'd broken up, before Sloane came along… He swallows thickly, taking note of the half-unpacked suitcase by the bedroom door in the opening frame. Yes, he thinks, of course. It was the night she moved in. It was a celebration. A fun celebration. He closes his eyes, remembering just how fun it had been.

Oh, god.

He can't take this. He can't do this. He needs to turn off the TV, to smash the DVD, to get out of the house… But he's frozen in his chair. He can't move a muscle; he can't stop it.

And just because he can't watch doesn't mean the people in the video stop what they're doing. They've only just begun, and he knows from personal experience that it'll be a long night.

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"You look good." His own voice rumbles from somewhere off-screen, probably just behind the camera, and he watches as she smiles, ducking her head against the mattress as if embarrassed.

She lifts it a moment later, a wide smile taking shape on her face. "You look good, too."

He steps around the camera, passing by it as he makes his way to the bed. He doesn't hesitate; simply tears off the boxers he'd been wearing and crawls on top of her. She lies back more comfortably against the mattress, smiling up at him as he hovers above her.

"Hi," she whispers with exaggerated quiet.

He chuckles, bending down to kiss her. She moans almost immediately into the kiss, for he doesn't waste any time with pleasantries—his mouth is in attack mode, his tongue entering quickly and mating with hers. After a minute, she has to pull back for air.

"Mark," she gasps.

"Hi," he replies huskily, planting his lips on her neck and trailing them across her flushed skin. Her eyes flicker over to the camera, as if nervous at the thought of a third party watching them. "You're the one who wanted this, remember?"

She isn't surprised he was able to read her mind. He's always been a good multi-tasker, never more so than in the bedroom. "I just" She swallows, fighting for breath as his teeth begin nipping at her clavicle and the surrounding flesh. "It feels a little weird, having someone watch us."

He buries his face into her neck, holding back laughter, before pressing a firm kiss there before lifting his head to meet her eyes. "No one is watching us, Lex. It's a camera, not a person."

"Still"

"Hey," he murmurs, cupping her face with one hand. His thumb strokes her skin softly. "Forget about the camera, okay?"

"Easy for you to say," she frowns, "I'm sure you've done this hundreds of times, with hundreds of wome—Mark!" She gasps out his name, her back arching up off the mattress as he plunges one long finger into her slick core.

"If you can't forget about the camera yourself," he grunts, "I'll just have to drive you to distraction."

"I—Oh, god," Lexie moans, throwing her head back as he adds another finger and increases the temp of his thrusts. "More, Mark. Please, more."

"Hmm," he smiles, bending down to kiss a winding trial down her stomach, "Gladly, sweetheart." She lets out a little squeak when his tongue finds its way to her protruding clit in mere seconds. "I think you can be louder than that," he taunts, smiling against her from between her thighs. He licks up her slit, removing his finger slowly. She whimpers when he leaves her—a bit louder than before, but still quiet. He lifts his head, his eyes lock with hers as he puts his fingers in his mouth and sucks off her juices.

"Fuck," Lexie curses vehemently, her eyes falling closed at the sight. "Jesus, Mark"

He hums appreciatively, running his wet fingers all over her stomach. "You taste so good," he whispers, pressing a kiss to her inner thigh. He looks up, his eyes finding her half-lidded ones. "You know that?" He wonders, his voice lowering, darkening with arousal. "Do you know how sexy you are?"

She only moans in reply, shaking her body as if it'll spur him on. He takes the hint, running his hands over the undersides of her thighs. He can already feel the sweat forming on her skin. He leans down, inhaling her delicious scent. "Look at this," he whispers, his eyes glued to her drenched center. "Look how wet you are."

Lexie lets out another moan, louder this time, and Mark smiles at the sound. His hands drift down to her ass, kneading the soft flesh. "And you know what, Lex?" He asks, looking up at her. She forces her eyes open, meeting his. What? They ask. His lips spread in a wide grin, just before he bends down to devour her. "It's all for me."

"Oh," she gasps immediately, moaning incoherently when his tongue delves deeply inside of her desire-soaked walls. She hadn't expected him so suddenly, and the level of unpredictability behind his actions only heightens the experience. "OH, MARK—"

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He's shaking, holding the remote in one hand and gripping the chair's armrest in another. He can feel his nails bite through the fabric as his eyes stay trained on the frozen image on screen.

She's been cut off mid-scream, her head thrown back in ecstasy, her body pitching forward. His eyes bore into the pixels on the TV, hoping that with enough willpower and determination he can make her emerge from that screen as a living, breathing person.

He swallows, and his hand starts to tremble even harder.

She'll never breathe again, he realizes, every muscle in his body straining to keep still and hold the grief in. She hasn't drawn a breath in over a year.

Maybe it was that thought that made him hit the play button again. Maybe he just wanted to see her breathe again, and make the past year disappear with many excited moans and a few orgasmic screams. Or maybe it was the grief that was still hanging over him, the heartbreak that still plagued him, even after thirteen months… Maybe it was sheer repression of the one instinct, the one drive, that he had never repressed—after all, how old was he the last time he went for more than a month without sex, let alone over a year? Probably fifteen. He can't be blamed for resuming his fantasy, can he?

No matter what it is, the fact of the matter is that he hits 'play' again. Her shouts fill the room immediately, as does his swearing and gruff encouragement, both coming from the TV in front of him. He lets his eyes fall closed, listening to another, happier version of himself tell the love of his life how hot, how sexy, how fucking beautiful she looks when she comes.

She murmurs something in reply about it being his turn now, and even though he knows he shouldn't—he can't—his eyes open anyway, just as eager for her offer as if she were sinking to her knees in his living room instead of rotting in a cemetery at the edge of town.

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"Fuck, Lexie," he groans, letting himself be pulled to the edge of the bed. She falls to her knees as his feet hit the floor. "You"

"I'm just returning the favor," she smiles, right before ducking her head and licking up the length of him. His body shudders at that one touch—he's too easy, he knows, especially when it comes to blowjobs. Especially when it comes to her, giving him blowjobs. He's never quite been able to get that image of sweet Little Lexie Grey out of his mind when she goes down on him. It's sick, probably, that thinking of her like that turns him on

"Christ," he bites out, lacing his fingers through her hair instinctually as she takes him in her mouth. "Jesus, Lex"

But he can't exactly help it, and he knows she wouldn't mind.

.

Hidden by his constant and loud strings of expletives coming from the video, he can't exactly hear her, but he's fairly certain she's started humming around his length as she begins taking him deeper into her mouth a couple minutes later. Her hands move to play with his balls when she pauses for breath, and approximately ten seconds later, he knows, he'll be coming in her mouth.

He hits the fast-forward button this time instead of pausing.

He wants to look away, he needs to look away, but he can't.

Somehow it's worse in rapid-speed. Their bodies seem to slap against each other almost violently, without a moment for tender touches or quiet words… And where that would have held true about their relationship at one point, now… Well, then… It just didn't seem right.

He hits play when things start to slow back down.

There's no sound for a few minutes, save for the ragged sounds of their twin breathing. Mark half-debates getting up and shutting it off, but he's still frozen in the chair just like he's been since he put that horribly wonderful DVD in the player so long ago.

And, just like he should've known at the beginning and just like he knows now, hitting play will only end up torturing him.

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He catches them in mid conversation. "—asleep already?"

"Nah, I'm" He yawns. "Awake."

She smiles, laughing softly. "Go to sleep," she stresses. "It's been a long day."

He groans in quiet reply, throwing out an arm to wrap around her waist. He pulls her against him, sighing contentedly when she curls herself against him. She smiles, pressing light kisses to his jaw. "Now go to sleep," she grins.

He mumbles a soft reply.

"What?" Lexie whispers back.

"Love you, Little Grey."

A wide smile spreads over her lips before she seems to remember herself. Her eyes dart to the camera again, as if embarrassed to express such a happy reaction to his declaration. She shakes her head a moment later, apparently recalling his words to forget the camera.

She leans over, resting her chin on his shoulder as she whispers in his ear. "I love you too, Mark Sloan." Her lips flicker into the tiniest smile as she bends forward to press her mouth to his cheek briefly.

"We'll unpack the rest of your things tomorrow," he mumbles, yawning again.

She smiles, reaching out to stroke his cheek softly. "Just go to sleep," she whispers, running her hand through his hair. She sighs after a moment, closing her eyes as well, and leaning her head against his shoulder.

In less than five minutes, they're both out cold.

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Mark watches himself fall asleep with tears in his eyes. He watches how she leans over him, whispering her love into his ear. He watches how she kisses his cheek softly, and then lays her head on his shoulder. How she wraps her arms around his larger body, holding him close, cherishing him.

He takes a deep breath, his teeth gnawing on the inside of his cheek as he tries not to think about the last time he cherished her, and how poorly that day had ended for both of them. How she'd been cold and lifeless when he'd finally been forced to let her go. How he'd eventually just fallen over, collapsing, because he knew he couldn't survive without her.

.

The EMTs had brought him back, of course. They revived him, gave him fluids, IVs, treated his bumps and bruises. A week and a half later, physically, he was fine. Mentally, though… Well, it seemed like there was really nothing to treat his particular mental state.

The anti-depressants he was recommended didn't work; eventually he just stopped taking them altogether. He figured booze would work better than any pill to deal with the pain; it always had. And, he figured, maybe if he hit his liver as hard as her memories hit him, he'd die fast. And young.

But he'd never be as young as her. No matter when he went, she'd still be the one who died at twenty-eight because neither he nor anyone else had been strong enough to save her. And he would be the bastard who lived to tell the tale. (Not that he ever talked to anyone about her.) No, he would never be that young. And with the exception of alcohol—which was more of a torture device than a tool for entertainment, anyway—he decided to swear off everything that could be deemed youthful.

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It's been a year since she died. (Well, it's been four hundred and two days, but he's been told he shouldn't keep such a specific tally of life without her.) And in that time, he hasn't once been with another woman or any woman. He hasn't looked at anyone, or touched anyone, or fantasized…

He's thought of her, of course, but the second things would begin to heat up in his imagination, his mind would flash him warnings. Her lips, stained red with blood. Her forehead, scraped and slashed open with glass. Her legs, twisted and broken, mangled beneath her. And her eyes, dead and lifeless, never holding that same chocolate brown warmth again.

It was all always more than enough to put off any release he ever thought he needed. He almost smiles at the realization that he hasn't thought or acted with his cock in months. After a moment, he does smile. How did she manage to reform me, he wonders with a gentle shake of his head and soft upward turn of his lips, even from the grave?

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As he watches the video shift over to the generic black screen after it cuts off, he wonders if she was somehow able to sense her death coming when she suggested they record themselves together. If so, he's eternally grateful for her forethought.

At least he has something to hold onto now. He has a copy of her, he has physical evidence of their relationship. I love you, Mark Sloan. He feels his eyes prick as he recalls those words, and the quiet, warm way she'd said them. He swallows back the emotion welling up inside him, focusing instead on the bleak light at the end of the tunnel: at least he has proof, now, so he'll always know.

He'll always know was never good enough for her, he'll always know he failed her when she needed him most… and that, in spite of all of it, she had loved him anyway.

He was certain he'd never understand the way her heart worked, nor how deep her generosity went, for as long as he lived. But he would dedicate the rest of whatever life he had left to finding out.

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He blinks at the black screen, still sitting frozen in his seat over an hour later. He takes a measured breath. And then another. He opens his mouth. And he says the words he hasn't spoken since that horrible day in the woods, since those happy nights in bed…

"I love you, Little Grey."

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Author's Note: Please leave me a review with your thoughts!