Disclaimer: Falling skies; is copyright to TNT. All Rights Reserved. No copyright infringement is intended, and no money is being made. I own nothing but the laptop I wrote this on, any OC's I have or will include and the storyline.
The morning sun seemed to rise, much faster, to Maggie, this morning. She'd slept an hour, at the least, that night, and had woken alone, in the bed that she shared with Hal. She had waited, hours, for Hal, as she lay, covered by blankets and sheets, holding the Saint Jude Pendant in her right hand, and watching the sun rising, and setting, in the sky.
Maggie had always preferred the morning, to the night. Things, to her, sometimes, seemed better, in the morning, with the light shining down. Not this morning. She didn't like this morning at all. She'd woken alone, again. She found herself, sometimes, dreaming of the morning when she had woken to find solace and comfort in his arms.
This morning, however, she had woken to an emptiness and loneliness. When Maggie had returned to their room, to sleep, Hal hadn't been there. She wasn't entirely sure if he had come to their bed, at all, that night or morning. There was nothing to indicate that he had been there, at all. She had considered going to search for him, but had decided against it because it could be what Hal wanted. He may have wanted the space, from her. She considered the idea that all of this had become too much for him. He was young – just eighteen.
Maggie always seemed to forget how young Hal really was. He was mature above his years. He was only eighteen. Days ago, he had turned eighteen. Days ago, Hal had learned that he could have been a father. If things had turned out differently – he would have been. He wasn't ready for that. He was overwhelmed, Maggie guessed, but all of this, and by Henry's return.
She hadn't slept well, in the night that had passed. It wasn't because she had felt sick – or, perhaps it was. Maggie wasn't entirely sure what she felt lately. She hadn't felt anything in days, and that was by intention. She couldn't allow herself to feel anything, too deeply, yet. But, before she could prevent it, the loneliness had crept up, and swallowed her.
She should have felt happy, joyed, that she had met Henry. After Joseph had fallen asleep, they had spent hours, and hours, talking about everything and everything. He was sweet, and funny, and they laughed for hours. She hadn't laughed, or smiled, like she had with Henry in a while. The last person that had made her laugh, and smile, like that was Hal.
Henry is a great, beautiful kid. He's her son - and she met him, after these years of wonder, and anguish, and worry – she had met her son. She should have been smiling, but she couldn't bring herself to smile once she'd left Henry's room. In the hours that she'd spent with him, the worries of the world and the pain that accompanied those worries had, momentarily, been forgotten.
Knowing how she should feel, and what she does feel, is incredibly difficult for Maggie to deal with, so she doesn't deal with it. She can't deal with it. Instead of waiting for Hal, who may not return, and instead of allowing her thoughts, memories and emotions to daze and consume her, she has to move. She has to do something to distract herself from her thoughts.
So she moves, towards the shower, and rinses her body under the icy cold water that flows softly from the shower head. Each droplet that hits her skin, and soaks into it, soothes her.
As always, the water feels different against the scarred parts of her body. Her scars have faded, in parts, but they're still there, and she still considers them as something she is ashamed and embarrassed of. She lets the water trickle down her skin, tattoos and scars, until she feels clean.
Once clean, and changed into a clean pair of black jeans, and a grey tank top, Maggie steps out of the bathroom, with her leather jacket in her hand, to find Hal, stepping through the door to their room.
He looks tired, like he hasn't slept at all, in days. His skin is paler, than usual, and his cheekbones appear, slightly, hollow. His eyes move towards her, slowly, and once catching sight of her he does not smile, or say a word, instead his eyes move over her arms, which are not covered by any garments, or clothing – the skin is raw and scarred, in places, and in other places it is covered in tattoos. He takes in all of her, with his eyes, as if they are a new sight to him, and still says nothing.
Maggie catches Hal's empty gaze, which she feels is taking in each, and every, insecurity and mark on her body. She shifts, a little awkwardly, and pulls on her black leather jacket as quickly as is possible, before she says, "How are you feeling?"
Maggie hasn't stopped worrying about Hal – since the day that she met him. She tries, not to allow herself to worry, but she can't. Before he was taken, by the aliens, and changed, she worried for him. She worried that she would lose him, and she did, and she hadn't really gotten him back, not like before, until they had come here. It was here, that they'd become closer, they became stronger.
All of this, the way that Hal was acting, it was strange, to say the least. There was something different, in his eyes, which caught Maggie's attention and caused her to worry.
She feels like she is losing him, again. It's as though he's slipping right through her fingers, and there's not a thing that she can do to hold on to him.
"I'm fine, Maggie." he replies, quickly.
Maggie pushes her long blonde curls, with her hands that are covered with black finger-less gloves, behind her ears, before she lets a small sigh pass her lips. "Where were – you….?" she asks, softly.
"I'm sorry that I didn't return. I spent the night with Ben." Hal tells her, softly, while maintaining her gaze.
Maggie nods, as she steps towards Hal. She watches him, with both curiosity and concern in her dark brown eyes. After her eyes move over him, once more, she asks the question that has been troubling her for days. She says, with a low voice, "Is your memory… – do you remember, the warehouse?"
Her forehead creases, slightly, as the words pass her lips. She watches him, with intensity, as he stares back at her, silent for a moment.
"Yes, I do." he answers, with a voice that is slightly unnerving.
There are no emotions in his eyes, or in his voice, as he speaks. That is what frightens Maggie. That is why the voice in Maggie's head begins screaming at her – telling her that Hal is not okay.
Maggie begins to speak, to tell him to say something or anything about it – they need to talk about it. They both need to.
Hal cuts over Maggie, though, with a cold expression on his face, he says, "I can't do this right now. I have an appointment with Doctor Glass."
"For what?" Maggie asks, with a voice that is clear with panic.
"Doctor Glass wants to check that I'm healing, well." Hal replies, quickly, as he takes a step away from her. "I'll return." he adds, as he reaches the door.
With one last look back on Maggie, he turns away from her and steps through the doorway, entirely.
Maggie stands, at a still, staring down at the empty space that remains, in Hal's absence. She didn't want him to leave, but didn't have the words to ask him to stay. Her fears have been proven right, by Hal's quick departure – he wants space, between them. Even with this distance, between them, Maggie can feel that something isn't quite right.
She wants to go after Hal, and ask him where he is and what has happened to the Hal that she remembers, because the man that stood before her wasn't the Hal she knows, the Hal she finds herself thinking of, constantly, or the Hal that she fell for.
Those hazel eyes, which made her feel a million new things with each and every glance, seem darker. The light has faded, slightly, from them. She wants the light to return. She wants him to return to how he was, before. But he's gone, now. And she's not entirely sure when he'll return to her.
In her moment of uncertainty, the only thing she can allow herself to feel at the moment, Maggie heads outside. Not to the roof, because the idea of heights, in this moment of uncertainty, is not as appealing to Maggie, as it usually is. Her feet lead her outside – to the fresh, cool air, which soaks into her skin, and soothes her as the cool water had done so earlier.
As she opens her eyes, she finds Ben, walking towards her, with a rifle hanging over his shoulder and a tired expression on his features. When he catches sight of her, he gives her a small smile, as he continues to walk towards her.
"You on patrol?" he asks her.
Maggie shakes her head, as she looks up at Ben, "Nah." she replies. "You look tired…Did Hal, bunking with you last night, keep you up?"
The beginnings of a frown spread on Ben's forehead, and he lifts his hand to the side of his head, "Hal didn't bunk with me, Maggie." he tells her, while scratching at the side of his head.
He drops his hand, back to his side, and lifts his eyes back up, to look at her. Ben can see, clearly, that something has changed, between Maggie and Hal. He can't see what, though. He can't see, or guess, what Maggie might be feeling, right now, because she's excellent at hiding her emotions. Now, he sees nothing in her eyes, or on her face, which might give him any indication of what she might be thinking or feeling.
"Did Hal tell you that?" Ben asks.
Ben wonders, and worries, why Hal would be lying to Maggie about his whereabouts, and where he spent the night. Ben assumes that Hal is having difficulty sleeping, and is probably not sleeping at all.
Ben doesn't sleep much, if all, these days, and so he understands that Hal might be outside, or wandering hallways trying to distract himself from his thoughts or memories that he can't escape, because he can't sleep.
Even with sleep, you can't escape the thoughts, or the memories. They can, at times, be worse in dreams, because there is a sense of helplessness, an inability to do anything to protect those you love, or even yourself.
"Nah, I-uh…I woke up, and he wasn't there. I was just….guessing." Maggie replies, lying.
She can't, for some reason, admit to Ben, or to herself, that Hal lied to her.
"Excuse me," A voice, unfamiliar to Maggie's or Ben's ears cuts in, over there conversation. The two of them look towards the speaker – the youngest of the Marines. He stands, before them, upright, in his uniform and with his weapon in his hands. "I'm looking for a Miss Margaret." he tells them, after casting a quick glance over both of them.
"Maggie." she corrects him, as her forehead creases up in confusion.
"My apologies, Maggie." Isaac says, still with a serious expression on his face. "I'm Staff Sergeant Isaac Hatchet. Captain Weaver has just informed me that the two of us will be doing a patrol, together."
Maggie hesitates, as her eyes flicker from Isaac to Ben. She shakes her head, slightly, because she isn't on patrol until later, that afternoon – and she's doing that patrol with Tector. He'd offered – no, he'd insisted that he'd go with her, on this patrol and any others until Hal was well. And Hal wasn't well yet. Hal is her partner; he will always be her partner.
"You must be mistaken." Maggie replies, quickly.
"I'm not mistaken, Maggie." Isaac tells her. "Captain Weaver, not long ago, held a meeting in which he informed me, and my brothers, that we would be, regularly, involved in patrols. He assigned the first patrol to the two of us."
At first, Maggie, reluctantly, follows Isaac towards the location they will be patrolling – north of the hospital. But, once she gains her bearings, she speeds up and takes the lead. But, much to Maggie's annoyance, Isaac keeps pace, and manages, for most of their patrol, to stay right by her side, like Hal would.
"Speedy little thing, aren't you?" Isaac comments, with a small grin on his face, as he keeps his eyes on Maggie.
Maggie replies, quickly, "Have you considered that maybe you're just too slow?"
Still with a smile on his face, Isaac says, "I'm a Staff Sergeant in the United States Marine Corps."
"A slow one." she retorts, with no smile on her face.
Maggie has no reason to trust Isaac, or any of the men who accompanied him here. They don't have a particularly good history with outsiders – especially military outsiders. There seems to always be clashes with those in the military, and those not.
"So, Maggie, do you have a last name?" Isaac questions, as both he and Maggie duck, simultaneously, under a low hanging tree branch.
Once surfacing from underneath it, and returning to her normal stance, Maggie continues to walk as she replies, "Nah."
"That's quite strange. So, in a way, you're like Cher. No last name." Isaac suggests, with a grin, that Maggie finds both goofy and slightly annoying, on his face.
Maggie cranes her neck, to glance once at Isaac. When she turns her attention back to the trees in front of her, she says. "You know, you're very talkative, for someone part of such a secretive group."
"I'm not sure if I should be offended, or take that as a compliment?" he asks, tilting his head sideways. "Secrecy is perhaps one of our only weapons left against the enemy." Isaac adds.
"We aren't your enemy." Maggie says, very quickly/
"And we are not yours." he replies, with a more serious expression and tone. "You're quite quiet, Maggie." he adds, as he continues to observe her.
Still keeping her eyes on the forest ahead, Maggie says, "Yeah, well, I'm not looking to make new friends."
Isaac takes a few, larger steps forwards, towards Maggie, and once he is beside her he says, "That's a shame. I think you and I would have gotten along well."
"I doubt that." she says, once finally meeting his gaze.
His green eyes stay locked on her, as he says, "So very doubtful and suspicious, aren't you, Maggie? Tell me, are you always like this? Or is it only with strangers you assume to be enemies."
"We don't assume that you're enemies." she tells him, with a softer voice. "We haven't worked well, with outsiders. I doubt that will ever change. Our methods are too different."
With a slight from on his face and a faltering smile on his lips, Isaac says, "They can't be that different, can they? We all have the same goal."
Maggie nods, slightly, as she considers his words. They do have the same goal, but their methods are usually different from others. She says, softly, "One would think so."
The smile has disappeared from Isaac's face, and his expression is that of a much more serious one, as he says, "Doubt us, if you will. Watch us with suspicion if you must. But, we are humans, just like you, and we are fighting the same war as you are. The Second Mass can't fight two wars – one against the outsiders deemed suspicious, and the aliens, because you can't win both wars. To win this we must present a united front. We must remain on the same side."
Those last words replay through Maggie's mind – they must remain on the same side. It's vital to the survival of the human race. Not standing, firmly, on the same side is not only a waste of energy but of time. Time is so very precious in this new world. You have to hold onto it, for as long as you can, because before you've realised it, the time slips through your fingers, and there's not one thing that you can do to get it back.
They walk, in a complete silence, back towards the hospital, at the end of their patrol.
As the hospital comes into view, Isaac looks down at Maggie, as he walks beside her, and says, "You know, Maggie, for the doubtful, suspicious, speedy person that you are, you strike me as odd. You seem – there's something about you."
Maggie raises her eyebrows, slightly, and with a low voice, she asks, "Is there?"
Isaac nods, slightly, as he tells her, "Yes, there is. The odd thing is, despite your attempts to come across as though you don't care, you do. You care a lot – especially about the lost causes."
Isaac had caught sight, of the pendant hanging around Maggie's neck, earlier, but had found it appropriate to bring it up now. He found that there was something incredibly interesting about her. He wasn't quite sure what it was he found so interesting, or why that was, but he did. He hadn't met anyone like her before.
She stiffens up, noticeably, as her left hand moves, slowly, towards the chain hanging from her neck. She felt strange, that another pair of eyes that weren't Hal's had seen their pendant. It was theirs. Maggie and Hal had both been lost causes, and still were today. They were lost causes who had, in ways previously thought unimaginable by Maggie, helped each other by just being there. Being in the others presence was enough to help.
Maggie lifts her gaze, very slowly, to Isaac, who she finds is already watching her. She can feel his green eyes, attempting to dissect her brain – to learn who she was, and what made her tick. "You know – I think….We're done here, Isaac."
Isaac takes a long step, in front of Maggie, to stop her from moving. With his hands, raised slightly in the air, he says, "Maggie, we were just getting-"
Maggie takes a step back, and still with a creased forehead she says, "Getting to what – know each other? Nah, we weren't. I told you – I'm not looking to make new friends."
"You keep throwing that word around; I never said I wanted to be your friend. I don't like you all that much, and you, clearly, can't stand to be around me – I've gathered that much from your speed walking." Isaac says, with the smallest smile playing on his lips. He tilts his head slightly, to the side, and continues, "This sounds like the beginning of a terrific friendship, doesn't it? Besides, I don't have many friends – and from what I've heard, you could use another."
"What you've heard?" Maggie asks, a little intrigued but also confused about what it is he has heard about her.
"Yes, well, people talk." He tells her, before pausing, and with no smile he says, "I think that having all of these civilians around is incredibly risky and almost idiotic. But, they are useful for making conversation."
"You want to talk?" Maggie asks, as she takes a step to the side, away from Isaac. "So talk to them. Not me." she tells him, before abruptly, stepping away and moving, as quickly as she can, towards the hospital.
Upon reaching the stairs of the hospital, Maggie's pace slows down, as her eyes scan each hallway and every room that is open, for Hal. She wonders, as she continues to search for him, how he is feeling, how his appointment with Anne went. He was acting strange, about it. Maggie couldn't quite figure out what it was, but there was something different, she knew that much.
Just as Maggie thinks of Hal's appointment, with Anne – she appears, in front of Maggie, coming towards her with a warm smile on her face. Dressed in a long grey blouse, and dark brown pants, Anne says, so softly, "Hi, Maggie. How are you feeling?"
"Fine thanks, Anne." Maggie replies, a little too quickly.
"That's good." Anne tells her, still with the kind, motherly smile that she always wears.
There is, however, something that Maggie sees in Anne's eyes that she recognises, all too well. She saw it in her eyes, when they were at Charleston, and Maggie was falling to pieces. She won't let herself go back there – back to the shattered mess she became at Charleston. She won't allow herself to be that person again. She won't let Anne look at her, this way, as she did in Charleston.
"Have you seen Hal?" Maggie asks, finally, breaking the moment of silence.
Anne shakes her head, as she crosses her arms. She replies, "Not today. Why?"
"You haven't seen him today?" she asks Anne, with a frown on her face.
"No, I've been with patients, all day. Except for lunch – I ate it with Tom, and Matt. Why? You haven't seen him today?" Anne asks, slightly worried about Hal's whereabouts.
Maggie falls silent, for a second, as she becomes, momentarily, occupied by her thoughts and worries about Hal. She looks up, at the sound of Anne calling out her name.
"Yeah, I've seen him. It's just….He's acting, differently." Maggie says, softly.
Anne questions, "How do you mean?"
"Do you think that Karen could have done something to him? He doesn't seem…himself." Maggie tells Anne, as she takes in a deep breath of air.
The thought of Karen hurting Hal, of her causing Hal pain, makes Maggie feel sick to her stomach. Maggie wants to, as she has always wanted to, do anything to keep Hal safe.
Anne shakes her head, and with a gentle smile on her face which is supposed to be reassuring, Anne says, "Maggie, I understand what you're feeling. You almost lost Hal. You've got every right to be worried. I'll check in on him, if you want, but I assure you, your worries are you reaction to almost losing him. Hal is still Hal."
"Master, have you decided on your first move of attack?" Karen questions, as she appears, almost out of the air, behind the unmoving and silent figure of Hal Mason.
He doesn't turn to her; instead he continues to stand, at the foot of the pool of running water in the forest. The water moves, slowly, when a new ripple is formed. It, mostly, appears calm, on the surface. He tells her, while continuing to look down at the blue, almost clear, water, "I ordered you to return when needed. You are not needed yet."
Karen says, softly, "I'm sorry, Master. I have been eager, to move against the humans."
He tells her, with a low voice, "We will move soon enough. The plan is coming together, as I expected it would."
As Karen steps towards her Master, she stops, abruptly, as she feels that he has become weakened – ill.
"You are ill, Master." she states, immediately concerned for his wellbeing, as she continues to move towards him.
"I am not ill." he tells her, as he turns, slowly, to face her. "The host is ill."
"Hal Mason?" Karen checks, with a face that clearly shows the momentary flash of worry that passed her mind.
Despite who she is, now, she will forever hold feelings for Hal Mason. The idea of Hal being ill does not sit well with Karen, and she feels she must speak.
"You will get treatment for the human?" Karen asks.
Hal says, coldly, "You suggest foolish things. I will not be seeking treatment for a human, who will be dead in time - They will all be dead in time. You care, still, for the human whose body I am occupying? You are incredibly useful to me. But that does not mean that I will not dispose of you if you prove, in the future, to be of no further use. It is the human part of you, which weakens you. Do not allow it to control you."
Karen says, with an expressionless face, "I will not. I have long forgotten that side, Master."
He continues to watch her, as he says, slowly, "Since you are here, I will inform you of the plan, and your role in it."
The previously, almost clear, blue sky, which had followed Maggie around during her patrol, with Isaac, had long disappeared as she had neared the hospital. The clouds had shifted, the colours had changed and faded into a darker blue, before changing, entirely, into a grey. The thick clouds, that had formed and now hung heavy in the sky, clearly showed that a storm was not far off.
She had, after finding Anne, continued on her search for Hal. She had wanted to talk to him, so badly, now. Instead of finding Hal, however, Maggie found a different Mason– Matt. She found him, sitting alone, in the cafeteria. She found this odd, considering she was used to seeing Benjamin attached to Matt's hip.
Maggie moves towards him, slowly, and once reaching him she does not sit at the table, but rather stands, at the edge of it. "What's up, Matt?" she asks him, softly and straight out.
Matt's creased forehead is a clear indication that something is wrong. Maggie isn't sure what is wrong, or if she will be able to help him – but she will try her hardest to, because she cares for him.
Matt shrugs, and says, softly, "Nothing."
"Come on." Maggie begins, as she pulls out a seat, in front of him, and puts her rifle down on the table. "I know you too well. What's up?" she asks.
Matt shifts, in his seat, and when he finally lifts his eyes to meet Maggie's, he asks her, "Hal's going to be okay, isn't he?"
With silent doubt, in her mind, Maggie answers as reassuringly as she can, "Hal's going to be fine, Matt. He always is."
"And Ben- Ben's going to be okay, right? He's going to stick around?" Matt asks, with a slightly nervous voice.
"You're worried about your brothers." Maggie comments. As Matt stays silent, she looks down at him, and with a small smile, that reassures Matt, she says, "You shouldn't be worried. Ben isn't going anywhere, and neither is Hal. They're both going to be fine, Matt. They always are. They're too stubborn to not be fine."
As the words pass Maggie's lips, she almost believes them. They're almost enough to believe that Hal will be fine. But she can't believe that until she finds him, until he returns to her. When he does return to her, they'll make it through this together, as they always have and always will. They're partners. They're too close now to not make it through this together. They mean too much to each other to not make it through this, and come out on the other side, together.
A/N: Firstly, I want to apologise for the lateness of this update. I can't believe it's been one week since my last update (one week in Australia anyway) I've been so busy, and then I hit a huge writers block and was writing really bad stuff that I didn't want to post on here. THEN I got sick. BUT I won't go on about me. Let's talk about you. All of you who read this, seriously - you are really, really awesome, and amazing. There's no other way to put it. I hope that you're enjoying where this story is, and where it is headed. And I'll continue to post as long as you guys are still interested.
To my lovely, lovely sister. Thank you. You're amazing for all that you help me with. I wouldn't be able to sort the terrible, bad ideas from the good ones. Thank you! :)
Thanks to those of you who gave me feedback, on the OC's. It was generally positive, so I'm going to keep the OC's around for a bit longer. They'll have an important role in things to come. I won't say anymore.
Thank you to those who have followed or favorited this story. It means so much.
Dear Guest reviewer; Agus; who posed on chapter 42;
Thanks so much! I'm so happy to hear you think that it is a great chapter. I can do that! I will, in the future chapters, definitely add some more tender moments between Maggie and Henry.
You're right! Maggie knows, in her heart, that it isn't Hal. She knows that something is wrong with him, and it isn't her Hal. Fingers crossed Hal doesn't die in the show, because he's awesome. Thank you very much for reading and reviewing. :)
Dear Guest reviewer; Guest; who posted on chapter 42;
Wow! Thank you so much. I'm so incredibly happy to hear that. And very relieved to hear you think the OC's are good for the story, and they make sure it doesn't get boring.
I'm really sorry for any confusion, in the previous chapter or any chapters prior to that - but Hal is completely gone. He's completely and entirely under the control of the Overlord. The Overlord has complete control of his memory, his actions and what he does, and his mind. I'm sorry that you must have been confused. It's a little difficult for me to write about Hal being the Overlord, as I was worried people might be confused by my constant use of;
Hal does this - when it's really the Overlord doing it. (I'm sorry for any confusion)
There will be more Maggie and Henry scenes coming up. I really enjoyed writing his character. It is incredibly difficult for her.
BTW I took what you said, and included Maggie remembering Henry, when he was born. It doesn't go into too much detail, but in future chapters there will probably be more detailed memories on it.
Thanks so much for reading. :)
I apologise for my extremely long authors notes. I always stop before the A/N becomes longer than the fic itself. I'm just really thankful and grateful.
I don't really like this chapter, so let me know what you think. And I promise I will be updating quicker (tomorrow. or maybe even again tonight.)
I promise you - more action will be coming. I know this is a slow one, but it'll start picking up pace soon enough.
Thanks and I hope you enjoy.
P.s Sorry for any grammatical errors. I do check them over, but most times I miss some. Sorry in advance.
To any of you whose lives have been changed or affected by Sandy stay safe; I can't understand what you're going through, and I'm so sorry you have to go through it. I'm sending you positive thoughts, well wishes, and prayers, and we are all praying and thinking of you in Australia. Stay safe. You're all strong. You will get through this and come out stronger on the other side. Thinking of you all Xx