Written at the request of my friend :) As always, I own nothing! Enjoy!
Dexter Morgan and Hannah McKay stood tightly holding one another in the doorway to her greenhouse. His face nuzzled into her neck, and she leaned her head against his, her eyes still closed.
"I'm glad to see you," Hannah finally said, breaking the silence of their long embrace.
"I can't stay," Dexter mumbled.
"So this is just another booty call?" she joked.
"No," Dexter said. He pulled back to look at her but kept his arms around her middle. Hannah's arms stayed wrapped around his shoulders, and she curled one of her hands into his hair. "This is just an I-really-wanted-to-see-you call."
She gave him a shy smile and said, "Well, that's sweet. Why can't you stay?"
"Kids," Dexter told her. "They're at my sister's tonight, but they're coming to my place in the morning for breakfast before they head back to Orlando. I'm not sure what time they'll arrive."
Hannah nodded. "That's nice."
"Do you want to come?" Dexter asked. "For breakfast…in the morning."
"Meet your kids?" she asked with a wide smile. "Really?"
"Yeah," he shrugged.
"That's big," she told him.
He kept his gaze on her eyes and nodded. "I know. What do you say?"
Hannah's face lit up. "Yeah," she replied. She laughed, embarrassed by her own excitement over Dexter's invitation and repeated, "Yeah."
Dexter leaned in and gave her a kiss. She gently walked him backwards as they kissed and locked the greenhouse behind them after Dexter pulled away.
"Do you have to leave right away?" she asked him, putting his arms back around her body.
"No, I've got some time," he said. He leaned in for another kiss, expecting the evening to go in that direction. She kissed him quickly, then placed her hand on his chest.
"Can you tell me about your kids?" Hannah asked. "So I'm prepared."
Dexter nodded, grabbed her hand, and led her into her house.
Hannah showed up the next morning before Jamie and the kids arrived. She was dressed in a blue patterned dress and her favorite boots, her hair in waves around her shoulders. Dexter let her in, and she placed her purse on the desk by the door.
"Am I too early?" she asked.
"No, not at all," he said. "Jamie said they'll be here any minute."
Hannah helped him in the kitchen until they heard a knock. She hung back while Dexter opened the front door to find Astor, Jamie, and Harrison on the other side. Dexter took Harrison from Jamie's arms and peered outside around her.
"Where's Cody?" he asked.
"Deb took him out for a pre-breakfast breakfast, just the two of them," Jamie told him. "She said she got some alone time with Astor on the patio last night and wanted to be fair."
"That…sounds like Deb," Dexter said.
"Well, I'm going to go. I've got to get to class, but I'll be back later to pick them up," Jamie said.
"Thanks, Jamie," Dexter called as she walked away.
Hannah nervously walked into the new arrivals' line of vision as Astor stepped inside the apartment, dropping her things by the door.
"Hey, I saw you on the beach yesterday," Astor said.
"Uh, yeah," Hannah said. "That's right. You did."
"This is Hannah," Dexter said. "She's my…friend."
"Right," Astor said knowingly. She turned to Hannah. "Nice to meet you."
Hannah smiled. "You, too." She turned to Dexter. "And this is…"
Dexter shifted Harrison in his arms so both boys were facing Hannah. "Harrison, there's someone I want you to meet. This is Hannah."
"Hi, Harrison," Hannah smiled.
"Can you say hi to Hannah?" Dexter asked, tickling Harrison's stomach.
"Hi," Harrison said with a small smile and a wave. Hannah grinned.
Dexter set his son down on the floor and pointed towards some toys lying in the living room area. "I got out some of your favorites. Why don't you play until breakfast's ready?"
Harrison nodded and wandered over to his toys. Astor headed back outside and leaned over the balcony, looking out at the ocean. Dexter headed back towards the kitchen.
"What do I do?" Hannah whispered.
Dexter shrugged. Hannah wandered into the living room, deciding to start with the little boy. She sat down on the floor next to where Harrison was playing with alphabet blocks.
"Hi," she said again. "Can I play with the blocks with you?"
"Okay," Harrison said, handing her a block from each hand.
"Do you want to spell your name?" she asked him. Harrison nodded. "Okay, let's spell your name."
Dexter watched as Hannah helped Harrison spell out his name in rainbow colored blocks. She'd tell Harrison which letter to find and then show him where to put it on the floor. She held her hand up for a high five when they were through, and Harrison smacked her palm, a smile on his face. Harrison pointed to Hannah.
"Can we do yours now?" he asked.
"You want to spell my name?" Hannah asked. Harrison nodded. "Okay, mine's a little easier."
Dexter stayed frozen in place, watching them spell out Hannah's name. He chuckled when Harrison quickly switched gears when they were through and handed Hannah a Lego person to play with. Deciding to leave them to their games, he turned back to the kitchen to whip up pancakes for everyone.
When breakfast was ready, Dexter walked over to where Hannah and Harrison were still playing and picked up his son.
"Ready for breakfast?" Dexter asked. As Hannah stood, he added, "Could you go get Astor?"
Hannah looked to the teenager outside. Dexter had shared some of his worries about Astor with her the night before. Since Astor was almost the same age Hannah had been when she ran away with Wayne, Dexter had been hoping Hannah could say something to her. Hannah didn't know what she was going to say, but she had promised Dexter she'd give it a shot.
"Okay," Hannah said.
Hannah walked outside and leaned against the railing beside Astor. Astor briefly looked over at her.
"I'm sorry if you feel like I'm intruding on your time with your stepdad," Hannah said.
Astor shook her head. "So Dexter likes you, huh?"
Hannah shrugged. "I guess."
"How long have you been with him?"
"Not that long," Hannah said. "But I'm really excited to meet you."
"Did he tell you I'm awful?" Astor asked.
"No," Hannah said immediately. "He had a lot of great things to say about you. He did tell me he worries that you're making some bad decisions."
"So he sent his new girlfriend outside to lecture me because he thought I might listen to someone I'm not related to," Astor said. "Great."
Hannah laughed. "You're smart," she said. "But not exactly. He asked a girl who made a really bad decision around your age to tell you that choices you make now can have consequences."
"What did you do?" Astor asked, as if to test the validity of Hannah's statements.
"I ran away at fifteen with a boy who turned out to be a spree killer," Hannah said, not sugarcoating anything.
Astor's eyes widened slightly. She looked over at Hannah. "Why did you do that?"
"Alabama didn't feel like home. He was older. I liked him. He asked me to," Hannah said simply. "I didn't know he was a killer until later. Look, I know you don't know me, but the point of this story is one wrong choice at fifteen, and it's dictated everything I've done since."
"It's just pot, though," Astor sighed. "I'm not killing anyone."
"I know," Hannah nodded. "It's a lot different. Dexter just wants you to be careful…and not ruin your future before it begins. He cares about you."
"I know he does," Astor nodded. The girls were quiet for a moment before Astor asked, "Are you guys happy?"
Hannah nodded and then shrugged. "It's new. We're still figuring it out."
"Well, I want him to be happy," Astor said. "I think that's what my mom would want."
Hannah nodded again, not really sure what to say to her. "Dexter sent me to get you for breakfast. Do you want to go inside?"
Astor nodded, and the girls headed back into the apartment where Dexter and Harrison were already waiting at the table.
After they were finished eating, Hannah and the kids went back into the living room while Dexter cleaned up. Hannah had offered to help him, but Dexter insisted he could handle it. Harrison, Astor, and Hannah were coloring pages torn out of a coloring book when Harrison spotted Hannah's cell phone sitting on the other end of the table. He dropped his crayon and walked around Hannah to reach it.
"Uh oh," Astor said as she realized what her baby brother was doing.
"What is it?" Hannah asked.
"He loves technology," Astor said. "It's like a thing with little kids now. They all love touch screens. You better take it back before he deletes an app or something."
Hannah turned just as Harrison picked up the phone and started touching the screen. She gently pulled the phone down from his face, and he looked at her.
"What are you doing?" she asked him.
"I like phones," Harrison said. "Astor don't let me write."
"He likes the texting," Astor explained. "He accidentally text this boy from my AP Bio class a couple months ago. It was so embarrassing. I put a password on my phone."
Hannah thought about it for a minute before glancing over at Dexter in the kitchen. She turned to Harrison and asked, "Do you want to text your dad?"
"Yeah!" Harrison said.
"Okay, come here," she said. "I'll help you."
Hannah moved from the floor to the chair and pulled Harrison up next to her. She held the phone and told Harrison which buttons on the screen to press. They didn't get very far into the message to Dexter when the front door opened and Deb appeared, Cody behind her.
"Hey, I wasn't planning on coming in, but I found Astor's necklace…" Deb said, trailing off when she saw Hannah McKay sitting with Dexter's kids in the living room. "You've got to be fucking kidding me."
"Deb…" Dexter started, putting the dish he was about to wash back into the sink.
"Don't," Deb said. She handed Astor's necklace to Cody and walked right back out the front door.
"Deb!" Dexter called, following her. He looked at Hannah. "I'll be right back."
Hannah nodded as Cody plopped down on the couch next to Astor. He waved at Hannah.
"I'm Cody," he said.
"Hannah," she replied.
"Are you Dexter's girlfriend?" Cody asked.
"She's cool," Astor said. She pointed towards the open front door. "But what was that?"
"Your aunt doesn't like me very much…" Hannah said, leaning forward to peer out the window to see what she could see.
"Why?" Cody asked.
"It's a long story," Hannah muttered.
"Oh," Cody said. Seemingly accepting that answer, he pulled out his phone. "Do you like Angry Birds?"
Dexter caught up to his sister a few apartments down from his front door. "Deb, come on!" he said.
"Come on…" she muttered. "You have Hannah McKay in your apartment with your kids, sitting where her last victim died…do you know how completely fucked up that is?"
"Why is that fucked up?" Dexter asked.
"Because your son is in there being held by a fucking serial killer!" Deb said quietly.
"Technically, my son lives with a serial killer," Dexter said.
"That's…different," Deb said.
"How?" Dexter asked.
"It just fucking is, okay? What is she even doing here?" Deb asked.
"I invited her," Dexter said.
"You invited her?" Deb asked. "Holy shit, you really are in love with her."
"I told you I don't know how I feel about her yet," Dexter asked.
"You wanted her to meet your fucking kids, Dexter. People don't introduce their kids to someone they're not sure about," Deb said.
Dexter sighed. "I don't know what to say, Deb."
"What are you doing? Are you trying to see how she…fits with them or something?" Deb asked. Dexter didn't say anything. "Oh my god…next time you want to play happy fucking family with Hannah McKay, leave me out of it."
"You showed up…" Dexter muttered but Deb was already walking away.
Dexter sighed and headed back into his apartment. Hannah was by the door, gathering her things. She looked up as Dexter returned.
"I think I should go," Hannah said.
"No," Dexter said. "You don't have to…"
"I should go," she repeated. She gently kissed his cheek. "I'll see you tonight?"
"Yeah," Dexter nodded.
Hannah sent a small smile in the kids' direction and shut the front door behind her. Dexter watched her walk away through the windows, and then turned to find all three kids staring at him, seemingly waiting for an explanation. He wasn't sure how he had envisioned the morning ending, but he knew it wasn't like that. He decided to avoid the elephant in the room and change the subject.
"Anyone want to help me clean up?" Dexter asked.
It was nearing lunchtime when the kids headed back to Orlando. Dexter knew he should head into work, but he found himself driving to Hannah's nursery instead. He found her working in her greenhouse. She had exchanged her dress for denim shorts and a t-shirt, and Dexter knocked at the door. Hannah looked up from her plants and walked over to let him in.
"What are you doing here?" she asked.
"I wanted to make sure you were okay," Dexter said.
"I'm fine," she said, walking back over to the plant she had been tending to.
"You left rather abruptly," he said, following her.
"Your sister didn't like me being around your kids," Hannah shrugged.
"I did," Dexter said.
Hannah's head immediately turned to look at him. When she saw that he was being serious, her face softened into a smile. He took another step towards her, and she turned to face him.
"Harrison seemed to like you, too," Dexter said.
"That'd be nice," she said wistfully.
"And Astor…Astor doesn't like anybody, but she said you were cool," Dexter continued.
"So…we're considering the morning a successful meeting?" Hannah asked.
"Yup," Dexter said.
"And you wouldn't mind a repeat occurrence in the future, should we still be not seeing each other the next time the kids are in town?"
"That's right," Dexter said.
"And you came here just to make sure I was alright?" she asked.
"Yup," Dexter repeated.
She moved forward, leaning into his face, her nose lightly brushing against his. She let him close the distance between their lips, and he clutched her face as they kissed. He wrapped his arm around her waist, keeping her close to him as they parted.
"You should probably go to work," Hannah said. Dexter made a noise indicating his agreement but made no move to leave. She laughed. "Dexter."
"I'll be back tonight," he promised, finally letting her go.
"I'll be looking forward to it," she said coolly.
Dexter walked away, and she stayed still. He had the life that she wanted – the normal life, one where she wouldn't always be Hannah McKay: the spree killer's girlfriend, with a family to love…even if his arrangement with his kids was a little complicated. He didn't see her as just a killer or a killer's accomplice. Not anymore, anyway. His kids didn't, either, giving her one of the nicest mornings she'd had in a long time.
She watched him leave through the windows of her greenhouse, wondering if there could maybe be a place for her in his life with his family. He turned to look at her as he walked away, and their eyes met for only a moment before he disappeared from her sight. She brushed her hair out of her eyes and turned back to her flowers. Time would only tell.
Thanks for reading!