A/N: So I think I mentioned the last time that I am currently obsessed. Seriously, it has been forever since I've been inspired to write fic but these two make it really easy. This piece was particularly Fitz centric; I had to resist the urge to throw Olivia's point of view in at certain points. Maybe I'll do a companion piece. Maybe I'll expand on this. Kind of depends on where the plot bunnies decide to go. I hope you enjoy it. Comments are always welcome.
Are you going to miss it?" Sally Langston asked.
Fitzgerald Thomas Grant III looked around the Oval office, his hands stuffed into his pockets. The Oval was iconic; it symbolized the power, the prestige, and the responsibility that came along with being the President of the United States of America.
Over the course of his two terms though, he'd made a lot of memories here that had nothing to do with his duty. There was the night of his first inauguration when he and Olivia had surrendered to the blazing passion that never failed to spark between them. He'd taken her hard and fast on the Resolute and it had been one of the most exhilarating, erotic moments of his life.
Dozens of other images flashed through his mind but not all of them were as pleasant as that one. In the early years, he'd seen this office and its constraints as "the crown jewel of the American prison system". In the last six years, it had been something of a saving grace. From the minute that Olivia had married Edison Davis and brought a child into the world, Fitz had used his work to keep all the pieces of himself glued together.
"I don't know," he said honestly.
He gave Sally a small smile.
"It's all yours now though," he said. "Good luck, Madame President."
Sally nodded at him and started to round the desk. Fitz gave the room one last look and then turned and walked out without a backward glance. Tom fell into step with him and they made their way towards the garage.
An hour later, Fitz was settled in a suite at the Ritz with Tom and the rest of his Secret Service detail on guard outside. He kept temptation at bay until after he'd taken a shower, eaten dinner and spoken to Karen and Jerry, who were visiting their mother in Boston for the rest of the week. They'd join him at the Grant ranch in California next weekend.
Picking up the phone, he hesitated for a split second and then dialed the number that Cyrus had given him a few days ago. She answered on the second ring.
Fitz's lips twitched in amusement even as tears burned the back of his eyes. It had been too long since he'd heard the sound of her voice.
"Hi," he said softly.
The silence on the other end of the line was suddenly charged and heavy.
"Is this a bad time?" Fitz forced himself to ask.
"I – hold on," Olivia said.
He heard a muffled whisper and then footsteps and then the sound of a door clicking into place.
"What- hi," she said.
"Hi," he repeated.
"You shouldn't…" Olivia began.
"Can I see you?" Fitz interrupted.
"That's probably not a good idea," Olivia said.
"Livvy, please," Fitz said. "I don't want to say good bye over the phone. Don't make me do that."
She sighed quietly.
"Fitz," she whispered.
And he could hear it in her voice; everything that had gone unsaid between them for six years. Of course, they hadn't been able to avoid each other completely; this was Washington, he was the president and she was married to a Senator. But they'd never let their guard down.
"Me too," he whispered back.
"Where?" Olivia asked.
"I'm at the Ritz," Fitz said.
"Definitely not a good idea," Olivia said. "Lincoln?"
"Okay," Fitz said. "When?"
"10:30," Olivia said.
"10:30," Fitz repeated. "Okay."
There was a brief pause and for a moment, Fitz thought she was going to say something else. Instead, the sound of a dial tone echoed in his ear. He disconnected the call and placed his phone on the table. He let out a deep breath.
In two hours, he would see her again. He'd be able to look her in the eyes and say all the things he'd wanted to say for the best part of the last decade. The Lincoln Memorial wasn't far so he forced himself to stay occupied with a book and the news on in the background until almost quarter after 10. Then he slipped into his sheepskin coat.
"Just you," he said to Tom as he walked out of his room. Tom nodded and murmured something into his wrist. He kept himself a few paces back from Fitz as they left the hotel and walked the short distance. He knew exactly where Olivia would wait for him so he wasn't surprised to see her walk up a couple of steps almost at the same time as him.
She stared at him, her beautiful brown eyes wide with a mix of apprehension, relief and anticipation. He walked towards her until he was close enough to touch. Olivia stood stock still, as if she was afraid that he would and afraid that he wouldn't.
"God, I've missed you," Fitz breathed.
"Fitz," Olivia protested.
"Not a day goes by that I don't think about you," Fitz said. "That I don't crave you."
"Please don't," Olivia said, her lower lip trembling.
"I have to," Fitz said, lifting the back of his hand to her cheek. Her skin was as flawless and smooth as ever and her eyes slid shut as she leaned into his touch for the briefest of instants.
"I still love you," Fitz said. "I just need you to know that. I'm never going to stop loving you."
Olivia blinked her eyes open and he could see the sheen of tears that she was fighting back.
"Nothing changes," she said.
Fitz forced himself to try to smile.
"I know," he said.
They stared into each other's eyes and he could see her struggling.
"Wanna walk?" he asked.
"Yeah," she said.
She turned away and wiped at her eyes. Fitz reached for her hand and was grateful when she didn't pull away but instead let her fingers intertwine with his.
"How is she doing?" he asked after the silence had stretched for a few beats.
Olivia smiled, genuinely this time.
"She's good, a handful," she said. "Told me this morning that when she grows up she wants to be president."
"Of the United States?" Fitz queried.
"Of the world," Olivia corrected. "Apparently it's the only way to make sure that children everywhere are allowed to eat cream cheese and…"
"Grape jelly," Fitz finished. "Best breakfast ever."
"I have pictures," Olivia offered carefully. "If you want to see…"
"Of course," Fitz said, coming to a stop.
Olivia fished her phone out of her pocket and turned to the most recent pictures of Carly. They were from the Thanksgiving play her kindergarten class had put on.
"She's precious," Fitz said, drinking in the tiny features that were all Olivia. "Doesn't look a thing like her father."
Olivia shook her head.
"She has your smile," she said. "And your stubborn streak."
"Pretty sure she gets that from you," Fitz tried to tease. It was hard though, to get the words out past the lump in his throat.
"Her expressions, her mannerisms," Olivia said. "That's all you. Sometimes I can't even look at her because she reminds me of you so much and it hurts and I miss you and…"
The tears spilled over and Olivia just let them fall. Fitz gathered her into his arms and tucked her head into his chest. He held her while she cried, knowing that she probably hadn't allowed herself this kind of emotional release in years.
"I did this to us," she mumbled. "How could I do this to us?"
Fitz framed her face in his hands and forced her to look up at him.
"You wanted to protect her," Fitz said. "You did protect her. We both know what her life would be like if people knew the truth, if they'd always known. It would have haunted her."
"You're not mad?" Olivia asked.
"You did what you thought was best for our baby, Liv," Fitz said. "What kind of man would I be to hold that against you? It doesn't mean I don't wish things were different, that I could know her, that we could be a family. But I understand."
Olivia sucked in a deep breath.
"Karen?" she asked. "And Jerry?"
"They're both good," Fitz said. "Coming out to California in a couple of days."
Olivia swallowed hard.
"You're really leaving?" she asked.
"I'm really leaving," Fitz said. "It's a new world."
"Kiss me," Olivia said.
Fitz didn't think twice. His lips were on hers in a heartbeat and it was desperate and frantic, lovers too long denied and who knew that time was already running out. They parted only long enough to drag air into their lungs and then their mouths melded together all over again, tongues tangling, arms clinging, hearts pounding.
"Promise me something," Fitz muttered, dropping kisses all over her face.
Olivia gave a jerky nod.
"Promise me that if things do change, if you ever want…" he started. "Or if you ever need anything, promise you'll call?"
"I'll call," Olivia said. "I should go."
They stared at each other, knowing that this goodbye was more final than any of the others that had come before and neither one entirely ready to face it.
"One minute?" Olivia suggested.
"One minute," Fitz agreed.
He pulled her into his arms, rested his chin on top of her head and somehow, they made that minute last forever.