Wow guys so this is a one shot that is so super long, the thing is actually 5,300 words all in itself. woo. took forever to type. But anyways i hope that you guys enjoy reading this, personally this is my favorite Ben and Kate story that I've written so far.
Disclaimer: I so do not own the show because i would have been berating Jeff to pick up this show for season three already.
A Risk Worth Taking
"Morning Ryan." Kate said as she passed the security guard with a smile feeling chipper, a word she wouldn't normally call herself. Kate continued walking to the elevator with an extra bounce in her step and called the elevator to go up. "Good morning Nancy." Kate said to the woman who passed by smiling in reply. Kate waited patiently for the elevator to finally open, another word she wouldn't describe herself as. The elevator dinged signaling its arrival and Kate entered wordlessly and hit the button for her floor.
"Hold the elevator!" She heard a voice call out in distress and heard their feet shuffling to make it. Kate stuck out an arm to hold it for the person that had called out and saw the face that matched the voice.
"Oh well good morning Benedict, running late today are we." She said sarcastically playing with him like he always did with her.
"Please Kate, not today." He said almost begging her but unable to look into her eyes.
The door shut behind Ben and they began going up. Ben didn't look in the mood to talk; he actually just didn't look like himself at all now that she really took a closer look concerned about his demeanor. His pocket square was the first she noticed that was off, it was askew like he had just thrown it in instead of meticulously folding it like he did every morning. She then noticed his lips were ghostly pale and his hair that she would never admit that he loved was not his usual organized mess; it looked disheveled as if he had just jumped out of bed. His brown eyes that made the best puppy dog eyes she had ever seen looked worn and exhausted. She became genuinely concerned for him and was about to speak and ask him what was wrong and why he looked so sad and worn down when she was cut off by a loud screech and a jolt that sent her flying across the elevator. Ben caught most of her downward gravity but even with his efforts to protect her and keep her from falling he fell and his back smacked the back of the elevator and he slid down leaning his back up against the wall while her head smacked into the metal railing bar leaving her unconscious and her head lying in his lap. Ben felt disoriented himself and took a moment to sort out what happened. The elevator was no longer moving up, the lights had gone off suggesting there was something went wrong in the circuitry, and Kate was lying unconscious in his lap. He placed a hand gently on her head feeling for any open wounds and felt something sticky and thick. He lifted his hand to his face in horror to confirm the already sinking feeling of dread that had seeped into his head. Blood, it was blood on his hand, her blood. Her head was bleeding and blood was beginning to pool and stick to her hair and face. Ben felt panicked and disgruntled like he was thrown into a nightmare with nothing but his cynical demeanor and wit to make it out alive.
Ben ripped off his the jacket to his forty-three thousand dollar Brioni Vanquish II suit, made with exotic fibers such as vicuna, pashmina and Qiviuk, and carelessly threw it against the wall of the elevator car they were stuck in. He unbuttoned his white collared shirt made from only the softest and finest Egyptian cotton and costing near thirty thousand dollars, with shaky, bloodied hands and a hurried pace not caring for the first time that he was about to destroy thousands of dollars. Ben was suddenly grateful that as he removed his shirt that he had taken the time and put on a tank top underneath as he began ripping his Egyptian cotton into a strip to wrap around Kate's head. Ben put aside the torn make shift bandage his breathing shaky and unsteady, looking down he noticed that his hands were shaking uncontrollably. Today was really not a good day for him. Ben grabbed for his black swirly pocket square and held it to Kate's head applying pressure until the blood began to clot. He held onto the pocket square with one hand and grabbed his shirt beginning to wrap it tightly around her head to hold the pocket square in place.
Ben lay Kate's bruised and bloodied head on his lap and used his jacket as a pillow to support her head. Nerves racking Ben began to hum a lullaby that his mom used to sing to him as a child to fall asleep whenever he was scared.
"Hush little baby don't say a word, daddy's gonna buy you a mockingbird, and if that mockingbird don't sing daddy's gonna buy you a diamond ring, and if that diamond ring turns brass daddy's gonna buy you a looking glass, and if that looking glass gets broke daddy's gonna buy you a billy goat." Ben was unsure why this always calmed him. Perhaps it was his mother's soothing angelic voice that managed to calm him. As Ben sang lowly he stroked Kate's hair with the light touch of a feather and looked at her face that conveyed peace but was also conveying the fact that she was in pain. "If that billy goat don't pull daddy's gonna buy you a cart and bull, if that cart and bull turn over daddy's gonna buy you a dog named Rover." As he continued to sing he felt his nerves slowly begin to calm to the point where he could at least get a grip on the overwhelming emotions he was feeling. Ben paused and thought of just how much he honestly cared for the woman knocked out and the countless times he had given her a piece of his soul and the fact that she never gave him a piece of her anything. He had resolved to ask her why she couldn't take a chance and now they were alone just like how he had run through asking her in his mind but this was not where and how he wanted to be alone with her to ask and ease his pain. "If that dog named Rover don't bark, daddy's gonna buy you a horse and cart and if that horse and cart fall down, you'll still be the sweetest baby in town." He finished, his voice slowly lowering until it was just above an audible whisper. He continued to stroke her hair and occasionally stroke her cheek with his thumb. Her blood was now caked onto his hand and would require a lot of effort to scrub off his hands and wash the memory away that was implanted in his brain and give him nightmares.
As Ben sat against the back of the elevator car wall holding Kate he was reminded of all the things both happy and sad that had happened in the same elevator. Thinking of the worse things that had happened he was brought back to the event that had started his bad day. It hadn't per se started as bad but quickly turned.
Ben had gone to bed that night after drinking a half bottle of scotch and watching the movie, Million Dollar Baby, and heading to his bedroom at nearly one in the morning, laying on his silky sheets and plush mattress and was dreaming again about Lake Tahoe but a phone call at two a.m. woke him up. Looking at the caller i.d. with an eyelid cracked open he faintly made out the letters d-a-d. Ben grabbed a hold of the phone and answered sleepily
"Yeah Dad, what's up?"
"It's your mother; she's on her way to the hospital now we're in the ambulance."
Ben jerked awake and swung his legs over his bed wide eyed and horrified. "Say no more I'm on my way."
"I'll meet you in the waiting room son." His father replied solemnly trying to remain stoic for Ben's sake. Ben hit the end call on his phone and jumped out of bed throwing on a T over his sweats and slipping into sneakers. He ran and grabbed his keys from the counter throwing open the door and slamming it shut not really thinking about his neighbors.
Ben sat waiting in the waiting room for his father to come and tell him what was going on. When his father came out he looked like he had been crying and was trying to hold himself together. He looked older, his face with wrinkles that were more prominent than usual. Ben followed his father back into a room where his mom was lying in a coma.
He looked down to Kate and was sure now she would be admitted to a hospital as well. The two women he cared for most were both asleep; one in a comatose sleep and the other in an unconscious sleep. Ben began working himself up thinking of all the worst case scenarios that could happen with Kate and had to begin singing again to calm himself. Surely he was being punished; this was not something he deserved. Ben felt Kate stir and his full attention was now on her.
"Katie, Katie." He said softly nervously shaking her shoulder edge in his voice. Kate's eyes fluttered open with confusion and began to push herself up but stopped as sudden pain erupted and dizziness and fell back down. Ben caught her head and gently brought it back down to rest on his lap. "Katie stop, you have a concussion!" He said concern evident in his shaky voice. "You hit your head on the railing; your head was bleeding pretty badly. I stopped it and wrapped your head so don't make any sudden movements."
Kate listened to Ben nearly mesmerized by his low voice that always managed to captivate her. She turned her head towards him and captured his eyes. Looking at them she was lost swimming in his eyes of chocolate. She could tell he was trying to hold himself together for her sake but his eyes and voice betrayed his stoic demeanor. She saw turmoil, and hurt, along with something she couldn't quite name but could best describe as love in her complicated friend's eyes.
"What's going on Ben? What happened?" She asked quivering in pain and fear.
"The elevator stopped and sent you flying smacking your head on the metal railing. You blacked out and you've lost a lot of blood. I stopped the bleeding and wrapped a bandage around your head."
"Thanks Ben." She said softly. Ben nodded and gave her a half- hearted small smile. It was all he could manage; his heart was burdened with pain and worry. Kate was silent for a moment just watching Ben look broken and said softly, "When I was out I had one of those out of body experiences you hear about where you can still be out but hear what's going on. I heard you singing, you sounded beautiful." She said sincerely catching his eye before he turned away.
"Thanks." He simply replied. There was a minute of silence and Ben thought Kate had fallen back asleep.
Kate shifted body disproving Ben's theory much to his relief and disdain. " Why were you upset earlier?" She asked quietly trying to calm her raging headache. She tried looking up to see the emotion sparked in his eyes by her question but to no avail; her vision was severely blurred and she felt as though she was spinning in circles.
Ben was silent unsure of how to answer and where to begin so he slowly said, "My mom."
"Dad what's going on? What's wrong with mom?" He asked his dad outside of his mom's room very concerned now at not having heard any news for hours.
"The dog was barking, I told her I'd go but she insisted. I…I rolled back over and I heard a loud continuous thump thump thump." His dad broke out into sobs as he continued. "She…she had tripped and fallen down the stairs. When I got to her, her head was bleeding and swelling and she wasn't responsive."
"Last night my dad called around two and said he was on the way to the hospital with my mom. I met him at the hospital and sat waiting to find out what happened. My dad said she had fallen down the stairs and when I got the chance to a doctor he said that her brain had swelled up and they had to drill a hole in her head to release the pressure. He then said that she was going to have to be put in an induced coma so they could control the swelling and keep an eye on the pressure and that it would be days before she could wake up and they couldn't guarantee she would remember everything. I sat with my dad until around seven and he insisted that I go to work because there was nothing that could help mom sitting in a hospital room. So I reluctantly did as he said, drove back home got ready and now here we are." He said swallowing the lump in his throat as he relived the uncertainty.
"Oh Ben, I'm so incredibly sorry." She said tears welling up in her eyes as she thought of her own mom in the hospital before she died. She placed a hand on his chest and he placed his own hand over hers.
"I was so worried when you didn't wake up. I thought…I thought I was going to breakdown. Now you're going to be in the hospital. What did I do to deserve the two people I care most about to get hurt? Why am I being punished?" He asked the air frustrated.
Kate felt his words pierce her heart, his anguish rippled through her. She placed a hand on his cheek as best she could and looked into his eyes staring down into hers. "It's just fate being the fickle, fickle bitch she is." Kate said with a half-smile.
"Why? Why did you say no?" He asked suddenly angry with her. "I know you feel the same way about me that I do about you so why have you shut down every attempt I've made. You say these sweet things to me and then when I ask for a chance you cut me off at the arms and run screaming bloody Mary in the other direction. Why do you keep saying no?" He asked his tone now changed from anger to hurt and vulnerable. Kate broke his gaze and looked away trying to think of an answer.
"I know we would be happy together. I know we deserve the chance to be together, but I always come back to… what if something happens and we break up and we can't work together? We would destroy the firm. I know if I just gave myself the chance I could fall completely in love with you and you would whisk me away and sweep me off my feet." She said softly tears forming in her eyes.
"So give me that chance Katie." He begged. "You're it for me Katie. You're all I think about when I drift off to sleep. You're the one Katie; thoughts of you plague my mind all day long. You can never do anything in life without taking a risk; I'm worth that risk. Just give me a chance, that's all I'm asking for, is a chance to be happy with you." He pleaded with her pouring out his soul and everything he had left within him. Kate slowly lifted her head not answering him and kept his gaze. She leaned her forehead against his breathing heavily racked with nervousness and her heart beating in her already pounding head. She closed the remaining distance between them and softly kissed his lips.
As Ben held her lips on his he felt Kate's grip on his neck begin to loosen and pulled away to provide her oxygen starved lungs and brain with air. He kissed her forehead and eased her head back onto his lap as she took in gulps of air.
Kate began to feel suddenly overcome with exhaustion and her eyes began to flutter shut and before she fell into the darkness calling to her she whispered, "Yes."
Ben felt finally content and placed another kiss on her forehead; after all of his pain and waiting Kate was finally allowing him the chance to be happy together with her. He felt something hard protrude from his jacket and mentally slapped himself. His phone! Why hadn't he thought of that earlier. He swiftly grabbed it from his jacket without disturbing Kate's sleep and held up his phone searching for signal.
"Damn." He cursed and tried removing the battery and then putting it back in. "Come on, come on." He said impatiently waiting for the phone to start back up again. He attentively watched the signal bar and cried out in jubilee when he saw a single bar. He clicked on contacts and quickly selected Leo's number from his long list of contacts hitting dial. Leo answered on the second ring and Ben thanked his lucky stars.
"Kate Reed's desk."
"Leo call 9-1-1. Kate and I are stuck in the elevator. She smacked her head on the rail. All I know for sure is she has a concussion but she could also have something much worse, get help quick."
"We have guys working on it but it'll be still be-"
Ben's phone beeped at him saying he had no signal and ended the call. "Shit!" He said frustrated and angry and worried, so worried for Kate's health and his mom's. What was Leo going to say? Was he about to say minutes, hours? Kate needed a hospital now not in hours; his bandage was amateur at best and barely functional. Ben silently prayed that Kate had nothing more serious than a concussion. He grabbed his iPod out from his pants pocket and hit shuffle songs hoping that the music would be the perfect distraction. But to him the perfect distraction would always be when Kate looked into his eyes and kissed him the way that she did. It was a moment imprinted on his brain right alongside their first kiss in this same elevator. The song that began to play was one of his favorites, Please Don't Stop the Music by Rihanna. As the lyrics, who knew that you'd be up here, lookin' like you do. You're making stayin' over here impossible. Baby, I must say, your aura is incredible. If you don't have to go, don't; were sung he smiled a little half smile thinking about how he met Kate the same way in a bar. He rested his head against the back of the elevator exhaling deeply and closed his eyes hoping to escape from his beautiful nightmare. Ben drifted off to and was unsure of how much time had transpired as he awoke from his slumber. He groped the darkness around him with one eye cracked open searching for his phone. He finally caught it and looked at the time displayed, 12:41. They had been trapped in this god forsaken elevator for nearly four hours. He looked down at Kate checking on her make shift bandage holding the blood inside her head. It was still holding up but blood had seeped completely through his pocket square and was beginning to spread outward on his shirt. Kate was also still asleep and Ben began to worry. He tapped her shoulder and shook her arm softly.
"Kate. Kate. Katie, wake up." He said his tone and eyes voicing his concern. Kate stirred and looked up at him clearly annoyed that he had taken her from her beautiful sleep.
"I was sleeping Benedict."
"Sorry I wasn't sure if you were going to wind up slipping into a coma and I didn't want to take the chance." He said defensively but relieved that she was still conscious.
"Well now you know and I'm up now."
"Better you mad at me than driving me insane with worry." He stated. Kate looked at him sympathetically and laid a hand on top of his that was resting lightly on her head. He smiled weakly at her attempt to comfort him and ease the anguish. "Thanks."
"So since we're still stuck in here what do you want to do to pass the time?"
"How about a game of twenty questions? You ask ten and I'll ask ten."
"You do know that's not actually how you play." She said with a smile.
"I know, it's my version." He said returning her smile.
Kate thought about all the possible uncomfortable situations but the amount of background she could dig up was too tempting to pass. "Sure." She said with a devious smile.
"Great I'll go first. Pancakes or waffles?"
Kate looked at him in disbelief. "Seriously?"
"What? It's an important question. I need to know what to make you in the morning for whenever you stay the night." He said in a playful serious tone.
"Waffles. What's your favorite sport?"
"Hockey, gotta love them Flyers. When you were a kid did you play with Barbie's or army men?"
"Army men." She said with a smirk like it was an obvious answer. "Who's your favorite superhero?"
"Iron man. He has style, he's smart, rich, cocky, sarcastic, and he's got the girl."
Kate laughed. "Why does that not surprise me."
"What's your favorite book?" He asked.
"Hmm… oh god Robin Hood, definitely Robin Hood."
"Now why does that not surprise me." He said sarcastically with a smile forgetting about the fact they were trapped and just enjoying this game he and Kate were playing.
Kate waited a moment thinking of a good question to ask. "When was your first time and who?"
"Well now that's two questions." He said with a smirk. "I was sixteen; I was at a party with Travis and hooked up with a girl I had liked all year. Her name was Amanda Smalls, she was eighteen." He answered thoughtfully. "What about you Katie who took your virtue and when?"
Kate paused thinking back and knowing that when she answered it would open up a can of worms. "It was during grad school, I was twenty two. It was with…" She quickly glanced at Ben and then continued saying, "It was with Justin, the night of our one year anniversary of dating." The space between them was silent but Kate broke it as she asked, "What do you like most about me?"
Ben smiled and answered looking at her thoughtfully, "Your strength, your courage, your heart, your compassion, your smile, the twinkle in your eyes when you see me, your kindness, I like you." Kate smiled up at him and he returned the genuine smile. "What do you like about me?" He asked curiously.
Kate stopped to process the question before meeting his loving gaze and replying," Your eyes and how you can make my heart melt with one glance, I love your hair and the playful smile that's always on your lips, I love the feeling I get when your lips meet mine, the kindness and compassion you try and conceal that I see right through, I like how you never give up, I like that you know me better than anyone else." She said voicing the things she often said aloud to herself when she was alone.
Kate slowly propped herself up until she was shoulder to shoulder with Ben. He leaned over and softly captured her lips with his. Kate returned the gentle kiss. Ben slowly pulled back and held her delicate, bruised, and bloodied face stroking his thumb on her cheek with a gentle touch and kind eyes that displayed the affection he often concealed and let no one see but her. Kate held his gaze not wanting to break their moment and closed the few inches between them giving him another softly placed and sweet kiss. Kate pulled back and sighed with happiness leaning her throbbing head that was pounding like a mosh pit against Ben's shoulder.
The elevator suddenly jerked to life and began whirring and moving down, Ben got to his feet and helped Kate get to her feet. He wrapped one of her arms around his neck and his around her waist. As the elevator stopped and opened they were rushed by paramedics who insisted on looking him over even though he repeatedly said Kate needed imminent care and assured them he was only sore and not badly injured unlike Kate whom he feared might have traumatic brain injury.
Kate was taken to the hospital to be taken care of and get a cat scan and whatever else the doctor would order. Ben and Kate's things were gathered up by the police in order to file an incident report. After Ben was cleared of injuries he rushed to the bathroom and took a look at himself. The man in the mirror shared a similar resemblance to himself but this man looked raged and run down. He had bags under his eyes, his hair was more disheveled than usual and his eyes portrayed anguish not his usual playfulness. His tank top and hands were covered in blood, Kate's blood. As he was violently trying to erase any trace of her DNA on his hands, post removing his tank top, Leo walked in and stood by him hands in pockets.
"Thanks for your help Leo." He said with genuine thankfulness knowing that Leo was the behind the scenes guy who no doubt had pushed the workers harder to get them out of the horrible elevator.
"From what I saw and heard you're the hero." Leo said hands in his pocket looking at him by the mirror. Ben looked up at him questioningly. "The paramedics said that it was your Michael Westen bandage that saved her from losing more blood than she did. They also said that with the kind of blunt force trauma she had that she should be in a coma and that she shouldn't remember the accident." He said nonchalantly as Ben returned his focus to scrubbing the blood off his stained hands. "Kate also mentioned to me something about a kiss." Leo said raising an eyebrow. Ben froze and listened not looking up. "Said it was the best kiss she ever had." Ben smiled brightly down at the water, his smile stretching from ear to ear.
"I told you Leo, it's a marathon not a sprint."
"And you just finished one marathon in the elevator and began an iron man." Leo said nodding his head in understanding. Leo patted his back and said, "I'll pick up some food, it's almost three now, I'll meet you at the hospital by four thirty in the cafeteria. Leo then left Ben to finish in vain washing off her blood. After scrubbing for twenty minutes his hands were raw with still a trace of her blood stained on his that was beginning to mix with some of his own blood.
He dried off his hands and walked up fifteen flights of stairs to his office not wanting to take the elevator again. He grabbed his gym bag he kept beside his couch and walked into the executive bathroom to change. He carelessly threw off pants and shoes remaining in boxers and knee socks that happened to be black today. He quickly threw on his T and sweats throwing his bloodied tank and pants into the bag along with his shoes and strapped on a pair of Nike's heading off to his car after briefly glancing at his watch. 3:37. Ben sped to the hospital exceeding the speed limit by ten and driving to the hospital with reckless abandon on a one track mind of the well-being of one Katherine Reed.
He arrived within fifteen minutes removing a third of the time it should have taken. He rushed up to the room in the E.R that Kate was waiting in before she was wheeled off to get a CT scan, MRI, and SPECT scan. After having talked to the doctor before seeing Kate, he had been told that all the tests together would take nearly two hours to finish. As he talked to the doctor he remained adamant in staying at the hospital until all the tests were done and results were in. Kate had already been injected with a tracer and anesthesia and was waiting to be sent off for the SPECT. Ben thanked the doctor and walked briskly into her room. He gave her a weak smile as he saw her hooked up to an IV with a lot of other wires coming out of her and connecting to monitors. He pulled a chair up next to her and took a hold of her hand.
"Hey." She said weakly with a smile happy to see him.
"Hey." He replied.
"So it turns out I'm going to be a lab rat for the rest of the day." She said trying to lighten the atmosphere.
"Better a lab rat than walking around with a potential brain injury." He replied grasping at straws to keep the mood light.
"I'm not going to wake up and forget that we're finally together, am I?" She asked looking at him with fear shining bright in her eyes. She wanted them to be together just as badly as he did, Ben concluded.
"I don't know." He answered his voice wavering and sounding like it was on the edge of breaking just thinking of the prospect of losing everything he just had gotten.
"You'll remind me, won't you? Of what has changed between us? You'll remind me that I…that I…"
"Yes." Ben said not wanting her to force the three words that would make him melt. It was then that Ben suddenly realized in just a few mere hours he could lose the one thing that he had fought so desperately for, the one thing that mattered most to him and because of this realization he hung his head and a single tear dropped from his eye and onto her hand. Kate's heart was breaking at the very prospect of losing Ben after she finally had him.
"Ms. Reed, it's time. They're ready for you." The nurse popped her head in and stated softly sensing the mood. Kate nodded sullenly with tears in her eyes as the nurses began flooding her room and prepped her for leaving. Kate gently squeezed his hand and gently laid a bittersweet kiss on it. Ben stood up and replaced his hand with his lips. It was a bittersweet kiss of the unknown.
Kate began getting rolled out and she said to Ben before she disappeared, "You're definitely a risk worth taking Ben."
Ben could see the sincerity in her eyes and all over her features matched by her anguish and Ben saw in her eyes what he could only describe as love. He smiled with the sting of tears still in his eyes and streaming down his face silently and he sat back down to wait until he could finally pick himself up to go meet Leo in the cafeteria and wait for her to return from all the tests and her inevitable possibly life changing slumber. And as Benedict Grogan sat there waiting through the tears he smiled as his mind replayed her words, 'You're definitely a risk worth taking Ben.' And he couldn't help but say aloud to himself with a small smile on his lips, "You're the risk worth taking, Katherine Reed."
Ta Da, The End, or is it? That's all up to you guys. If i get enough reviews and demand for people wanting an epilogue then i'll create one. I'm working on my sequel to Not Your Typical Love Story, that will also be a one shot. So guys please review tell me what you thought of it. It's that button right below that you click and then you type, cool story bro or it was alright girl.