Disclaimer: I don't own anything
A/N: This story is out by popular demand. I wrote A Sad Beautiful Tragic Love Affair with the intention of it just being a one shot but I had a lot of requests to conitnue, a lot of people insisting that there was more story to tell. It didn't take long (about five minutes after posting actually) for me to start to realize they were right. There was a lot more left for me to tell. I wanted to explore Lisbon's book more, her relationship with Kate, I wanted to give Jane and Lisbon another shot at trying again and of course, Jane had to meet their daughter.
So more than anything this is for you guys. For the fans who stick with me, who don't get mad when I post new things, for the ones who love my work and support me. For the ones who insist that I'm not a bad person or a bad writer. This is for the fans who told me that I had more to give.
You were right. Thank you.
This is for you.
You're In My Veins
Chapter 1: Nothing Goes as Planned, Everything Will Break
"Chasing monsters changes you."
Jane said that once and I couldn't refute it, but later I realized it doesn't just change you; it takes things away. Your dignity, judgment, family, heart and your soul. I know I lost all of those things in the hunt for Red John, so did he. I thought it was possible to get some of them back. Even now I'm still trying to take back what was once mine...with no idea if I will succeed.
From Tyger, Tyger by Teresa Lisbon.
Lisbon stood on her back patio area, the stretch of tiles meeting the sand only a yard away from her own bare feet, the sun hadn't baked them yet so she could still stand there without getting burned. The waves crashed on the shore and she saw several seagulls diving into the water again and again. It was still early for some people but she saw one jogger trudging along next to the wet sand.
She sipped her coffee and let the calmness of the early morning wash over her, fill her with something akin to peace. It was part of the reason why she wanted this place, the ocean was supposed to be soothing after all and she'd sorely needed it. Besides, Dani loved being able to run out to the beach whenever she wanted.
Annie was still asleep; if she was out late she had a hard time getting up before noon. Dani would be waking up soon, an early riser like her mother. She would be up and wanting breakfast before driving her ragged running around the house, if she caught her mother outside she wouldn't be able to keep her out of the sand all day.
She sighed and drained the last dregs from her mug, taking a deep breath of the salty air. A part of her just wanted to enjoy the solitude, soon it would be over. Chris was urging her to let him start moving some of his things into the house, hinting at possibly finding something bigger if she wanted. But she was reluctant to leave her home, the place where Dani had taken her first steps. She'd learned to swim out in that ocean.
More than that she'd bought this place as a part of her new beginning, her new life. The one she'd constructed from bits and pieces of her previous one, this was her fresh start and she loved it here. Loved it because here she wasn't tormented by memories everywhere she looked, no, there wasn't a part of this place he had touched walked across, this was one of the few places she could look around and know she was free of him.
She took in another breath of the sea air before heading back inside of her home. She put her now empty mug in the sink. A thought struck her mind and instead of heading upstairs to change she made her way to the living room. She had a long line of books on the shelf in there and she selected the one that she loved and hated the most.
It was hardcover in black with red letters and the lone image on the cover, a blood red smiley face. The title matched the face, big block red letters spelling out Tyger, Tyger and underneath in smaller print: The true story of the investigation and capture of Red John.
Her name was set underneath the face followed by Kate's. Her book, her words, her story, sometimes it was hard to believe that she'd done all of that. It seemed like a hundred years ago. A hundred years and a thousand tears.
Lisbon flipped open the book through the table of contents and part one. That part had been mostly Kate, background into Red John's life and then a detailed account of his victims before she'd been involved. She paused when she got to chapter twelve that was called "Angela and Charlotte Jane". She'd read it a few times herself but had made Kate write it, it didn't feel right for her to explain how they died…like it wasn't her place.
She kept on turning the pages until she made it to part two: her story. Her least favorite chapter was the first one where she had to go into detail about her life before she was at the CBI. Kate had to practically force her to write it, but apparently it humanized her or something. The following chapter was the first one that had flowed easily and it was simple.
Chapter seventeen: Patrick Jane.
Lisbon curled up on the couch and looked over the page. She remembered sitting in front of her laptop staring at a blank page, wondering how to explain how the Red John investigation started. She'd finally had to admit that it's true beginning was when Jane had walked into her life.
"Boss, a man is here to see you about the Red John case. He says his name is Patrick Jane."
That wasn't the first time I'd heard of name Patrick Jane, I'd gone over the case file dozens of time in the six months since my team was given the Red John investigation. But this was the first time I'd ever actually had a chance to meet the more infamous of people involved. I certainly didn't know the chaos that my life was just about to go through.
When I first saw him I didn't notice the things everyone first saw in him. He didn't have his trademark smile on his face; he didn't have the aura of confidence and barely controlled playfulness. The first thing I thought about when I met him was that he was lost. He reminded me of a puppy abandoned on the street. Broken is the best way to describe him, completely shattered.
He came to look at the casefiles, it wasn't unusual for family members to want to see if they can lend a hand but he was the more persistent of them. Unfortunately we had just gotten a new case and there was no way I could brief him on what we had, what little I was allowed to share with him. It wasn't until later that I realized he knew this all along; he had other plans to get what he wanted.
After one of my team members punched him, my boss was eager to give him what he wanted. That was how Jane tagged along with my team to a crime scene for the first time, and the first time I ever got to see him in action. One look at the body and he had a dozen details on the victim that a week of door-to-door interviews wouldn't have yielded. He did all of that without even breaking a sweat, but he did almost throw up. It was the first time I recognized that he had a gift I would never understand, but Jane would never call it that, to him it was the curse that had controlled his life and led to him losing his family.
He stuck around the next few days waiting for the Red John files and when our case hit a brick wall I made the decision that would change my life forever. I asked him to help me identify the killer, insisting that he could use his gift for something good. I still don't know what I said that was profound enough to convince him, but minutes later I watched him pick out the killer using hand made tarot cards.
I don't think he ever knew that I was the one who went to my boss and mentioned that he would be a good asset to the bureau. It wasn't without some hesitation; I'd seen the way he'd looked at those files, like an addict staring at a pack of heroin. But I hoped that I could temper that and maybe we could catch a few bad guys along the way. I was wrong and right there, but I don't regret that choice.
The truth is that Patrick Jane is the best and the worst thing that ever happened to me. I couldn't have known the absolute chaos that he would cause, worse than any natural disaster this world can create. I found out first hand was an absolute bastard he was, he was arrogant, stubborn and obsessive. He believed the ends justified the means and saw people as something that could be used and discarded to his own devices, including me. He had no regard for rules or regulations and often used cheats or tricks to solve cases. In our time together that included burying a man alive, faking his own death, starting a brawl, faking a bomb threat, making me believe we were going to die from an infectious disease (I punched him for that one), the list is endless. I posed as his wife, girlfriend, sponsor and sister so many times I lost count.
And yet somewhere along the way our relationship became more than just me trying to control the uncontrollable. It started off as mildly annoying coworkers but deepened into a real abiding friendship…and then something so much more. He showed sides of himself to me that I do not believe he had ever done before. He always knew my secrets but actually was willing to share his own. Our relationship became more than just friendly, more than familial, it transcended any description. I cannot think of a word to explain how we felt about each other. At least not any word I am willing to share.
She closed the book then, shaking her head at her sentimentality. She'd probably said too much then but she hadn't known how else to describe what had happened between her and Jane. The truth was the book had become more of a diary, a way to finally prove to herself that these memories were real, that she had some tangible proof it had all happened and she had survived it. That in the end, while she had been left utterly destroyed and the family she'd grown to love more than her own life had disassembled…it had been real.
The soft sound of a door opening upstairs and then the patter of little feet pulled Lisbon out of her thoughts. She smiled gently and placed her book back on its shelf before standing up from the couch. Just in time as her little girl came streaking into the room, blonde curls streaming behind her.
"Mommy!" Dani shrieked, throwing herself into her mother's arms.
Lisbon stroked her daughter's hair, feeling the same peace and happiness that always filled her when she was with her child. That was the only time she wasn't tormented by pain and questions, there could be no regret with this beautiful creature she'd created.
"Well, sweetie," Lisbon said gently. "What are we going to do today?"
It took a bit of time to round up her daughter for breakfast, while Dani was enjoying her cereal and milk, Lisbon had gone upstairs and dragged her niece out of bed. Annabeth Lisbon had grown up from a willful teenager to a downright unruly young adult. She'd coasted through college, showing up to class when she felt like it and was put on academic probation a half a dozen times. Her GPA never matched her potential but Annie was getting something of a dose of reality, moving in with her aunt until she finally figured out what to do with her life. Lisbon was willing to give her the time, provided Annie didn't mind helping her out as well.
That meant driving Dani to her preschool on her way to her retail job so Lisbon wasn't late herself. After the chaos of finding and killing Red John and then the surprising and emotionally devastating she'd had to step back a reevaluate her own life.
Actually she'd quit her job not long after Jane stopped coming around. Her pregnancy was what forced her to reevaluate where she could go and what she would do. That was how she started putting some lines out with the FBI to see if they were interested: they were. Right before Danielle's birth was when Kate showed up and suddenly she had a new focus: the book. She took some time from starting her job, moved down to Los Angelas and learned how to balance trying to write and caring for an infant.
Somehow she'd managed to string a few sentences together and then survive the book tour which included dozens of cities, media appearances including a couple of big time talk show hosts. She'd never wanted to meet Kelly Rippa but that interview sure excited her sister in law. And after the book did well, very well if the publishers persistence in writing another was any indication, she'd quietly gone back to what she truly was: a cop.
But with her young daughter and her taste for chasing killers without one blonde menace by her side waning, she'd stuck to a more administrative duty. Some days she felt oddly like Minelli, telling agents what to do and talking to some of the fat cats who always wanted a favor. She wasn't a fool, she knew what her bosses loved was the prestige of her name and background. Telling the public that the woman who helped catch Red John was on the case went a long way towards easing fears, even if she mostly shelled out a few ideas and petitioned judges for warrants.
Not that it was all smooth sailing. Her book and publicity had made her an easy target and the book had given her something she hadn't expected, transparency. Everyone who read her book knew about her childhood, her work as a cop and then a state agent. They knew the lengths she'd gone to in order to catch Red John, they knew about how the investigation had put her on his radar and if they really read carefully, then they knew that the serial killer had chosen her for himself.
That part still gave her nightmares; the idea of the psychopath she hated had believed she could ever be with him. She knew it wasn't love; he hadn't been capable of that. No, he'd merely coveted what Jane had. His obsession with Jane had reached insane heights to the point that he wanted to fill his shoes almost, by taking what was Jane's and that included her. It wasn't easy being targeted as the Clarice Starling for Red John but at least she'd gotten out with her sanity still in tact.
A part of her once wondered if that had bothered Jane, that the monster he'd chased had set his sights on her as well but she realized that Jane would never hold that against her. If anything he blamed himself for that, his actions putting her in Red John's sights. Perhaps that was what kept him away; it certainly made sense for him to shoulder that burden. But it didn't make her life any easier, it didn't make of it any less painful.
As she was driving to work her phone rang and Chris's name popped up on her ID. She answered it quickly. "Hey, Chris. I'm on my way to work. What's up?"
"I know, didn't mean to bother you but I got a phone call from the caterer. She needs to know what you want for the appetizers."
Lisbon winced, she hadn't even glanced at the list of food, or the caterer's menu for that matter. "Oh you know how easy I am, I'm sure whatever you want is best."
"My sister thinks that the mini crab cakes and the little quesadillas would be best."
"Sounds great," Lisbon said, ceding the decisions to her future sister in law once again.
She'd done that a lot actually, for every decision with the wedding. The flowers were roses and lilies…or was it gardenias? She didn't know and didn't really care. She'd have let Chris's sister choose her dress if it here possible but Kate dragged her to three different bridal shops herself.
Chris had pointed out her blasé attitude about the wedding before and she'd told him that she didn't really care about the wedding, she was looking forward to the marriage more. That was the truth; she wanted the wedding to be over with so she could stop thinking about everything else.
Since Cho's wedding she'd thrown herself into her relationship with Chris headfirst. She never stopped to question why she'd suddenly become desperate to be in a real committed relationship, why she really wanted to be married. Annie thought she just wanted a father for her daughter but Lisbon didn't like that explanation, it didn't explain why she had that odd turn after Cho's wedding. Well there was one explanation but Lisbon didn't like to think about it.
Jane was out of her life for good, her wedding had nothing to do with him. Nothing.
So she chatted with her fiancé about the upcoming wedding and he once again suggested they start looking at new homes, something bigger than the one she currently owned. That was something she tried to avoid, she didn't want to find a new place, not when she'd worked so hard to find a home where she felt whole again.
After that she mildly listened while he talked, his southern accent peeking out a bit. His accent was part of his charm, along with his good southern manners and his love of soul food. She'd been privy to his mother's cooking a few months back and had to admit it was better than any of the stuff she threw together at home and most of the food she could afford in restaurants. She'd love to have some of that deep fried chicken again, even if it would clog her arteries eventually.
Now if only she could learn to love his obsession with Tennessee football.
Finally they said their goodbyes along with plans to see each other that night if possible, he was talking to his publishers, which might mean an all night writing session for him. She hung up her phone and continued her drive to work in silence.
Chris was a good man, sweet and charming, wonderful with Dani but he didn't push her either. He recognized that she was Dani's mother and while he loved her, he was not her father. They thought about adoption but that proved impossible by her own doing. In the end it would just be as it was, Dani as her daughter and Chris having a new stepdaughter.
She pulled into the parking lot of the L.A. branch of the FBI and walked inside, nodding and smiling at the people who passed and greeted her in the hallway before she found her office. The desk was littered with paperwork and photographs of her daughter except one, which had her whole team. It had been taken eight years ago, before much of the chaos, before a long list of names, before Las Vegas, before she'd ever heard of Tyger Tyger Burning Bright. A simpler time when she'd been so happy.
Lisbon looked around her office, her name on the door and her a half a dozen pictures of her daughter smiled back at her. This was her life now, the best and the worst parts of it. And she was finding happiness again, piece by piece.
Lunch with Kate was an almost daily ritual now, something they both loved to do together now that they lived in the same city. Kate was the only friend she had who was close by and best girlfriend she'd had since she was a teenager. Usually the topics revolved around Kate's love life and her upcoming wedding. It made her feel like a real human being to sit outside at a restaurant and talk gossip over a chef salad.
"And before I forget, there is something amazing I have to tell you."
"What?" Lisbon asked, biting her tongue. The last amazing thing Kate had to tell her was that the guy from her gym had checked her out.
"Actually I have to ask you a question first," Kate said slyly. "Who would you want to play you in a movie?"
"Is this a joke?"
"I picture Sandra Bullock but you know that Kate Beckinsale would be a good choice too."
Lisbon shook her head. "What the hell are you talking about?"
Kate grinned. "My publisher called, there's been a really good offer to make a movie about our book."
"You're kidding me."
"No, how amazing would that be?"
"More like horrifying," Lisbon clarified, "I don't want my life to become some big Hollywood fantasy."
"They would change the names."
"Yeah because no one would realize what it was based off of," Lisbon scoffed. "Its in poor taste really, real people died because of Red John. It shouldn't be used to sell tickets at a movie theater with overpriced popcorn."
Kate rolled her eyes but she'd known that there was no way Lisbon would agree to this anyways. "Fine, I told them you'd never agree to it already."
"Then why bring it up?"
"Mostly because I wanted to see your face when I told you."
Lisbon glared at her friend. "Sometimes you act like a child." But she was amused herself…it reminded her of similar times when poking fun and gentle ribbing were just part of her day.
Kate laughed. "On another note, they are still hoping you'd write another book with me."
Lisbon grinned and shook her head. "As fun as that would be, what exactly would the subject be on?"
"McTier? Volker, the list goes on and on. You have a goldmine of material from your CBI days, why not dig some of it up?"
She shrugged. "The book was never about making money or patting myself on the back for a job well done. It was about sorting out everything that happened." She looked down at her hands, "And reminding myself that it was all real, after everything fell apart and my team went on their different paths…I needed something to hold onto to prove that it all happened…that I had these experiences and this family of teammates."
Kate was serious now, giving her friend a careful once over. "You know you didn't need a book for that. And your team…they didn't leave you. They just moved on, the same way you did."
"Grace, Wayne and Kimball didn't leave me," Lisbon agreed.
"Okay, three out of four, and do you really want to talk about proof it all happened with him. Dani is all of the evidence you need."
Lisbon took a sip of her water, her cheeks flushing with the reminder of her daughter and how she had come into being. "It wasn't about Dani. But that's not the point. The scars from the McTier and Volker cases aren't like Red John, they don't keep me awake at night and I don't feel the need to prove to myself and everyone else why things happened the way they did."
Kate nodded; she understood that about her friend. "Then will you at least look over my next book?"
Lisbon rolled her eyes. "I can't fix your grammar but I can let you know if it's good or not."
"That's all I need."
They both laughed lightly and Kate steered the conversation away from her job, instead telling her about her sister who lived in Pheonix and her ultra conservative lifestyle. They both found amusement in Kate's sister's woes like the time she called her in tears because her son had lost a tooth and it wouldn't grow in before the Christmas photos.
Yes, truly something worth crying over.
Lisbon was still laughing when she saw Kate's expression change to one of shock. "What is it?" she asked, genuinely worried about her friend.
"Do you know where Jane is now?"
"Of course not. Why?"
"Because isn't that him?"
"What?!" Lisbon turned around in her seat quickly and searched for a familiar face. Kate had to be wrong. Jane wouldn't be in L.A he would be anywhere near her. Besides, Kate had only seen Jane in pictures. There was no way she would be able to identify him. It must be a mistake.
Except two seconds later she saw him too.
He was standing across the street, next to a parked car. She didn't know if it was his or not, it certainly wasn't his Citroen if it was. But Jane was looking at her, staring more accurately.
"Oh God," Lisbon whispered, unable to look away.
"What is he doing here?" Kate asked.
"I…I don't know," Lisbon replied, "I haven't heard from him since Cho's wedding." Her heart was hammering in her chest. Why was he here? Why now? A month before her wedding? It was too late for him to want her back…much much too late.
And suddenly Jane was walking towards her.
"Shiiiit," Kate said, drawing out the word.
Lisbon could agree with those sentiments if she wasn't about to have a heart attack. "I have to go, now."
"Don't you want to—?"
"No," Lisbon cut her off quickly. "I don't. I can't do this again. Not now." Lisbon grabbed her purse and rushed out of the restaurant, forgetting that she hadn't even paid for her food yet. Well she would pay Kate back later, fleeing was much more important at the moment.
Lisbon didn't look back, didn't even thing about stopping until she was in her car and driving the to FBI branch in Los Angelas. A car honked it's horn beside her and she didn't know why until she finally saw that she was swerving all over the road, her hands were shaking so much.
She pulled over into an half empty parking lot of a bank and put her head in her hands, doing everything she could to just stay calm and breathe. Oh God. Why was he here? What could possibly have brought him within walking distance of her? Was he just passing through? Or…or was he there to see her?
Lisbon wiped the tears from her cheeks and shook her head. No, it was too late. Much too late for any sort of apology. He couldn't change, he'd told her that much. So this had to be some kind of fluke meeting. He wouldn't be here for her.
Her phone was ringing as soon as she walked into office and she wasn't surprised to see Kate's name. "Are you all right?" Kate asked as soon as Lisbon answered, not even waiting for a courtesy 'hello'.
"I'm fine," Lisbon assured her, "I'm at my office now, it's all right."
"I never saw you so freaked out."
"I was just surprised to see him," Lisbon replied. She was quiet for a moment before she gathered the courage to ask. "Did you talk to him?"
"No, as soon as you ran away he just watched you go and then left. I know he saw me but he obviously was trying to talk to you…do you have any idea why?"
Lisbon sighed heavily and shook her head even though her friend couldn't see her. "None, I don't know what he would talk to me about. He never called me after Cho's wedding and as far as I know, hasn't contacted anyone else."
"Then why is here?"
"I don't know," she repeated and then thought of a likely scenario. "He probably is just passing through and happened to see me."
Kate snorted. "Do you really believe in that kind of coincidence? He just happened to be in LA happened to be walking down that street and happened to see you?"
Lisbon groaned. "Look, I don't know why he is here. I don't know what he wants to talk about. It doesn't really matter. I'm not going to see him."
"Because there is nothing he could say to change things."
"What if he wants to be with you?"
That made Lisbon pause, there was no denying how her heart raced at that idea, how much a part of her still desperately wanted him. If he could come to her and actually be with her, actually prove that he would stay and love her forever…well she didn't know what she would do. Lisbon stared at the engagement ring on her hand and she knew what her answer should be.
But none of that really mattered.
"He's always wanted to be with me," Lisbon reminded her, "but he won't allow himself that opportunity."
"That's the dumbest thing I've ever heard."
Lisbon couldn't help but laugh a little there, mostly because she didn't want to cry. "It's Jane, nothing ever is simple with him. I should know, I fell in love with him."
Kate chuckled a little too but the laughed faded and what remained was uncertainty. It was Kate who finally asked. "He's here…are you going to tell him about Dani?"
"No," Lisbon insisted firmly, "there's no reason for him to know."
"Kate, he isn't going to stay. He'll just hurt her if either one of them knew, it's better for both of them if he remains in the dark about her and if she remains ignorant that he is here."
She sighed now too. "It's your life, your child and your messed up love life, it's your choice."
Lisbon nodded, relieved. "Yes it is."
Kate was quiet for a moment. "You're still marrying Chris right?"
"Of course," Lisbon said quickly. "Why would spotting Jane across the street change that?"
"It wouldn't," Kate replied but her voice wasn't quite so certain.
"Everything is fine," Lisbon stated, "In a month Chris and I will be married and Jane will be gone tomorrow. I doubt I'll ever see him again."
That thought killed her but it was most likely the truth.
"Okay," Kate said, "then I guess nothing has changed."
"No," she agreed. "It hasn't."
No matter how much she wished things could be different.
She buried herself in work after her almost encounter with Jane on her lunch hour, her phone burned a hole in her pocket though. Every time it rang she jumped, half expecting to hear his voice on the other end. But all she got was a call from her boss reminding her of the management meeting she had all but forgotten.
After finally getting out of the meeting she found a voicemail on her phone, her heart hammered until she heard Chris's voice. Apparently their late night date was canceled unless she wanted to spend the evening watching him write. That was probably for the best, there was no way she'd be relaxed enough to enjoy it.
When she walked through her front door she was immediately greeted by her daughter who threw herself around her legs. Lisbon happily picked her up and followed the sound of the television to find Annie in the living room, looking all ready to go out on the town. "Hey, you're home," Annie said.
"Yeah," she replied, "thanks for picking Dani up, hope she wasn't a handful all day."
"DJ was great," Annie told her.
"Annie took me for icecream," Dani exclaimed, "she talked to the man behind the counter for a while. But he gave me a cone with sprinkles and chocolate and marshmallows."
Lisbon turned to look at her niece, giving her an annoyed look. "Man behind the counter?"
"What, he was cute!"
She rolled her eyes. "I hope you aren't going out to meet random strangers from icecream stores."
"No, Jenna and I are going to check out our local spot."
Lisbon nodded, well at least that was something. Annie was wild but she wasn't an idiot, she knew how to take care of herself and her mace could handle the rest if need be. "Just stick together, don't take drinks from strangers."
"I know, I'm not an idiot."
"No, you're my niece who gave my daughter a ton of sugar before bailing on me."
Annie grinned. "DJ knows she's my favorite little cousin."
Lisbon groaned, not just because that was undeniably true. Annie had fallen head over heels in love with her child from the moment she was born, probably because she was old enough to find babies more interesting then some of her younger cousins. That and Annie felt a connection to her, the outside kid in the family.
If only she could get over that nickname.
"Stay safe," Lisbon reminded her niece, "and call me if you need help."
"Like if I need bail?"
She gritted her teeth. "Very funny."
"What is bail, Mommy?" Dani asked curiously.
"Nothing you need to worry about," Lisbon assured her, "and something your cousin better not need if she knows what is good for her."
Annie snickered and stood up. "Okay, DJ. I'm out but we're still on for movie night on Saturday right? Did you check your schedule?"
"Yes!" Dani exclaimed, she loved being treated like a grownup, even if checking her schedule meant making sure it didn't conflict with bedtime. Lisbon grinned as Annie kissed the little girl on the top of her head before heading for the door, her heavy boots clomping away.
Lisbon felt the familiar pans of worry after she heard Annie's car pull out of the driveway but she did what she could to ignore that. Her niece was smart; she'd never gotten into serious trouble. She could take comfort in that.
She turned back to her little daughter, still innocent and young. "All right, sweetheart. Who wants chicken nuggets for dinner?"
"Me! Me! Me!" Dani said, actually jumping up and down. She didn't care that chicken nuggets were one of the few things Lisbon could do well, since it was easy to just open the bag and bake them in the oven. She still loved the treat, that and she was probably still wired from all of the icecream.
But her mother was grateful for the busy night with her hyper daughter, it might do to keep her mind off of the fact that she'd seen the man who'd unknowingly bequeathed that beautiful blonde hair and dazzling smile.
Dinner, playtime, bathtime and bedtime eventually passed with Lisbon finally settling in for the night. Her daughter lay sleeping in her little bed, tucked away under her blankets. She kissed her one last time before whispering the same words. "I love you, Dani. My gift, my hope, my everything."
Lisbon filled the silence of the townhouse with chores and the low buzz of the television, the waves crashing on the beach were soothing but not enough to stop her mind from whirling around with the events of that day. Or rather the one event that was currently making her anxious. She felt better knowing that Jane hadn't tried to call her or contact her since he almost ran into her. Kate told her that he simply walked away after she ran off, hopefully he got the message that it was better to just stay away from her now.
Dani was fast asleep in her bed upstairs while Annie was out hopefully not getting into trouble. But at twenty-one there was no way she could actually control her and she was old enough to get into bars if she wished, and while Tommy was always worried about his daughter, Lisbon had a feeling she would wind up on her feet once she settled down.
Until then she had Lisbon's guest room as long as she didn't mind babysitting every once in a while.
But right now Lisbon was watching the house herself and trying to finish up some of the laundry, anything that would keep her mind occupied on something besides Patrick Jane. She had a month before her wedding to Chris and a year since she had seen Jane last, the last thing she needed was to get caught up in that mess again. She'd finally decided to just put it all behind her. She wasn't angry, never had been. Was she sad? Yes, that was something she couldn't deny but somewhere along the way she'd decided that it was time to at least try to be happy and maybe some day she finally would be.
She was carrying the basket of laundry to the washer but stopped in the hallway when she saw the pictures on the shelf. She'd lined them up when she'd first moved here, added a few of Dani as she'd grown. But most were exactly the same. This was her little shrine to the life she'd once had. Pictures of her team at the CBI, one of them all together, some of just them. One of Grace and Rigsby's wedding, Cho and his bride Annie were added later…and one of her and Jane. She'd thought about taking that one down many times but had never been able to do it.
Lisbon dropped the basket and picked up the framed photograph instead, staring at the two of them. This was taken six years ago when they had been nothing more than friends and coworkers…even if she'd been harboring real feelings for him for a while. Even then she'd secretly known that things probably would go badly, she'd been right, but wrong to believe that the job would be the complication. Jane had enough complications; the job had nothing to do with it in the end.
She put the picture back and stared at them all together. This was her family. The family she'd loved and raised for years. It had been heartbreaking to watch it all break apart in the end, even if it was all for good reasons. She couldn't blame Rigsby and Van Pelt for wanting to start their new lives in a new city that wasn't filled with memories of their failures and pain. She couldn't even be upset that Jane had felt the same need, he'd never lied to her, had always told her that when Red John was finally gone…that he would be too. He would want to be somewhere else, far away from the family he'd lost and the pain he'd inflicted. In fact she really should be angry at herself, his love for her was what forced him to come back time and time again. She'd been the one stopping him from making a clean break after all.
In that regard she could blame herself for the pain but could she really have helped falling in love? No. And knowing that fact didn't make it any easier, it still tore her up inside to know that all of the work she'd done through the years was ripped apart at the seams when the demons was finally slain. It didn't help ease the pain that she'd been runner up and lost the love of her life to ghosts.
But she'd gotten her daughter out of it. That was more then enough repayment for her tears.
With a sigh Lisbon picked up the laundry basket again and carried it to the small laundry room that was off of her kitchen. She dumped it on the floor and was about to start sorting it out when at loud rapping on the door disturbed her melancholic solitude. She groaned and threw the shirt she was holding back onto the floor before heading to the foyer. The frosted glass kept her from seeing who her late night visitor was, probably Annie too drunk to find her key.
Lisbon opened the door, ready to drag her niece inside. Except it wasn't Annie.
It was Jane.
For a long moment all she could do was gape at him, too stunned to actually comprehend what was happening. To his credit, he did much the same.
How the hell had he found her? Why was he there?
And this time she couldn't run away.
"I…I… you shouldn't be here," Lisbon stammered out and began to close the door on him. Too shaken to recognize how ridiculous and rude that was.
But Jane pushed against the door, keeping her from closing it. "I had to see you."
"Why?" she asked him. "What are you doing here? It's been over four years, what could possibly have changed to get you to come now?"
He looked a little shamed now, embarrassed, like a little boy caught in a lie. "Cho told me you were getting married."
There were two things that surprised her about that statement. The first being that Cho was in contact with Jane, she had no idea he'd actually kept up with the other members of the team. She'd assumed that the only person he'd spoken to in years beyond the wedding was her…and that had ended over eight months before Cho's marriage. The second was that Jane had felt the urge to come and see her once he found out about her engagement…he'd all but told her that she needed to move on. Why was he freaked out now?
"It's true," Lisbon told him softly, "In a month." She looked at him feeling a little guilty that he must have some problem with this…but mostly she was confused. "What's wrong, Jane?"
He shook his head. "I don't know." He ran a hand through his still thick, still beautiful, curly blonde hair. "I just…when I found out you were getting married. I hated it."
Lisbon stepped back and he took the opportunity to walk through her doorway, but he stayed in the little welcome nook. "Are you…are you saying that you want to be with me now?"
Her heart was pounding and she felt something building in her stomach. Fear, anger…hope. It was like whirlwind taking place inside of her, she didn't know what to feel.
But she squashed whatever hope was there when Jane shook his head.
"I don't know what I want. I just don't want you getting married."
Lisbon crossed her arms over her chest. "That's not fair, Jane. You can't tell me that I'm better off without you, disappear for years only to come back begging me not to move on. I can't live like that."
"I know it isn't right," Jane agreed.
"Then why are you here?" Lisbon asked him again but she wasn't waiting for an answer. "You already tore my life apart once, don't do it again. I'm not like you, Jane. I don't want to live my life alone. I wanted to be with you, I gave you that chance but you told me that you couldn't stay. You walked away."
"Yes, I did," he said softly.
She nodded. "Then you don't have the right to be jealous of someone else wanting what you turned down."
Jane was quiet again, his eyes no longer wide and wild. He looked more sad and resigned than anything, but much calmer. After a while he nodded. "You're right. I shouldn't have come."
Tears filled her eyes again. Why could they only come together to cause pain?
"I'm sorry, Patrick," she whispered.
Jane gave her a ruthful smile. "No, it's my own fault." He sighed heavily. "If you love something you have to let it go, right?"
Lisbon didn't say anything. She hated that phrase, hated it with a passion. It was the same thing she'd turned over in her mind when Jane had walked away all those years ago. It hadn't given her any comfort. But maybe Jane could put his emotions aside better than she could, after all he'd managed to stay away this long.
"I'll go," Jane told her, "And I won't bother you again."
Somehow the idea of Jane actually permanently walking away didn't make her feel any better. While she didn't want him to come back…she didn't want to lose hope either. It hurt to know that it was finally over, yes it was her doing but somehow it was still hard for her to imagine things actually changing. She had the dress, the date was saved and the invitations sent, her decision was made.
But she'd never really thought that it finally close that door. That was difficult because for the past five years she'd done everything she could to make sure it stayed open.
It was better this way, she told herself. Without hope she would finally be without pain. That was what was most important, finally being able to breath without hurting anymore.
"Patrick," Lisbon began, he stopped and turned to look at her before the door. "I wish…I want you to finally be happy. That's all I want, all I've ever wanted."
He smiled again. "I know. All I want is for…" He stopped talking then, actually he wasn't even looking at her anymore. His eyes was focused on something behind her…something that terrified him.
She narrowed her eyes in confusion. "Jane?"
He still didn't look at her but pointed behind her. "What is that?"
Lisbon turned, half expecting something horrible to be behind her. Instead all she saw was the empty hallway and the small table. Nothing unusual.
It took her a few more seconds to realize what he was talking about…then she felt sick.
Resting on the little table was a picture of her daughter.
Her daughter that resembled her father too much to be denied.
Lisbon turned around again, now her eyes were wide and mouth agape. She was searching for something, an excuse, a lie, something that could set it aright. But her mind was completely blank.
Jane didn't wait for an answer. Instead he stormed right past her and picked the picture up to give it a closer look. All she could do was watch as he studied the photo of her daughter…their daughter, carefully. He ran one fingertip across the glass, tracing something. Her smile? She didn't know, it didn't matter.
Then he was looking into her eyes again, his gaze dark with shock, fear…and a bit of anger. "I don't suppose there is much of a point in asking how old she is." Jane stated.
Lisbon numbly shook her head, knowing full well that there was no way she would be able to deny what was so obviously the truth.
Her confirmation brought more anger into his eyes along with some determination. "Where is she?"
"Where is she?" He repeated but looked towards the stairs, answering his own question.
"She's asleep," Lisbon said, rushing forward as if that would stop him. "It's too late for this." Lisbon wasn't sure if she was meaning to late in the evening…or too late in their lives.
But Jane wasn't one to be deterred from what he wanted. He simply gave her another hard look and headed right up the stairs. She took a few steps after him but stopped short of following him, instead sinking down onto the steps to cry.
She heard him make it to the hallway and then open one door..then another, before finally finding the room he was looking for. She couldn't hear anything after that but she knew Jane well enough to know that he wouldn't wake up Dani. He wanted to see her, to prove to himself that this was all real.
She could imagine him up there, standing in their daughter's room, a few steps away from the bed. Would he notice that she slept like him? Curled up on her side, kicking the covers away in her sleep. Would he step close to touch her or would he be content to just drink in the sight of her? Lisbon wanted to know but she couldn't move from her place on the stairs, just continued to sit there and cry quietly to herself. Even if she didn't know why she was crying in the first place.
Perhaps she was mourning the fact that her daughter was now at risk for the same pain she felt.
Minutes passed but Lisbon didn't keep track. Finally she heard the soft footsteps quietly making their way down the hallway again, moving slowly, perhaps to ensure the child still slept or maybe he was still in shock.
Jane walked down the stairs and stopped a few steps above her. She heard him shift in his stance and then sit down too, matching her own posture. He sighed, running a hand over his face. "What's her name?"
Lisbon licked her dry lips but it did little good, her voice was barely more than a whisper. "Danielle…Danielle Jane Lisbon." She heard his breath hitch when she mentioned her daughter's middle name. She finally turned to look at him, surprised to see that his eyes and cheeks were wet just like hers. "I call her Dani."
"Danielle," Jane said gently, testing the name out on his tongue. He looked away from her, lost in thought. She just didn't know where that was; she didn't have his gift for reading minds.
"Say something, Jane," she urged. She really just wanted to know where he stood in all of this.
Jane looked back at her, his eyes still hard. "I could ask if she is mine but I think we both know the answer to that one."
Lisbon pursed her lips. "What difference does it make?"
"I had a right to know," Jane insisted.
"When was I supposed to tell you? You didn't come back and half the time when you called me you were drunk off your ass. Somehow that didn't seem like the best way to let you know that I was pregnant."
He turned away again, his lips pressed in a firm line, no doubt remembering all of those phone calls. "What about last year? You had plenty of time at the wedding. Not to mention the fact that I wasn't drunk every time I called you."
That was true. But Lisbon held onto another reason. "It was too late then…what would you have done anyways?"
"I don't know!" Jane exclaimed, "You didn't give me the chance to find out."
"I wasn't hiding her," Lisbon shot back, "if you wanted to know then you should have come back."
"That doesn't make it right."
"Don't talk to me about what is right or wrong, we both know you don't have a leg to stand on."
His eyes were narrowed at her but she simply glared right back. She might be broken but she was fiercely protective of her child. "And what were you going to do? Let her think that this Chris is her real father?"
She looked away, her cheeks tinged with red. "She knows who you are."
"Well at least one of us did."
That comment sent more anger through her. "I was broken, I'd lost everything, my family and my dreams. I had to start over, you don't have the right to be angry at the life I created."
"I have the right to know I have another child."
Well he had her there.
Lisbon couldn't speak, didn't know how to negate that universal truth. She'd buried that guilt deep beneath layers of excuses but it had always been there, waiting for someone to scrape them away and reveal it to her once more. She stared at her hands, her simple engagement band winking in the dim light. "I didn't know if you even wanted her."
Jane gaped at her. "Why wouldn't I want my child?"
She met his eyes, letting him see her pain once more. "Because you didn't want me."
That statement stunned him into silence now and she felt the seconds tick by with every ache of her heart. They did nothing more then look at one another, trying to sort out how to fix what seemed to be irreparable damage. She almost didn't notice the sound of the front door opening until she heard Annie's voice.
"Aunt Reese? Is everything okay?
Lisbon leapt to her feet just as Annie stepped into view. Of course the first thing she noticed was Jane right behind her aunt, but she didn't recognize him immediately. "What is going on?" Annie asked, spotting the clues that Lisbon had been crying.
Jane was staring right back at the girl but he had the benefit of a photographic memory. "Well, Annie. You certainly grew up."
It must have been the voice that triggered it, because recognition sparked in her eyes. "The psychic is back?!"
"No," Lisbon said quickly, "He's not back. He's just here."
Jane raised an eyebrow. "And what does that mean exactly?"
"That you are leaving," she said simply.
But he shook his head. "We have too much to talk about."
"Not now," Lisbon replied.
"Don't stop on my account," Annie cut in, she was eyeing both adults with a bit of amusement. But her eyes were burning with questions.
Jane didn't acknowledge Annie's favorable statement. "I'm not going to just walk away without discussing the fact that we have a child."
Annie sucked in a breath and gaped at both of them for a moment. "Well that answers one question."
Lisbon glared at her niece while Jane glared at Lisbon. "And apparently everyone else was aware of this but me."
"Please, I'm family. We all knew she was sleeping with you."
"You are not helping," Lisbon hissed. Annie shut her mouth but didn't move away, she was enjoying this drama unfold in front of her. Lisbon sighed and turned away from her niece. "We can talk about this…but it should be done privately and at a decent time." Jane nodded until she added. "Unless of course you change your mind."
His eyes flashed. "I'm not leaving this city until I get some answers."
Lisbon met his gaze coolly, not really believing he had it in him to stay. "Then we'll talk later."
Jane kept his eyes on hers, as if testing to see if she was lying or not. She wasn't, if Jane was serious about staying then she didn't have much of choice. But she wasn't the one with the bad track record either. "I'll come back later."
"You'll call me."
"I'll come back," Jane corrected, his voice pointed. "I'd like to meet my daughter properly."
She gasped then, she hadn't actually thought about that. Yes, Dani knew about her father but all she knew was a photograph and stories. She'd never been told that it was possible to meet him one day. That was something Lisbon had never been prepared for.
Jane gave her a stern look before heading for the door. "I'll be back," he said again and shut the door behind him.
Lisbon stared at the spot where he had just been, still trying to sort out everything that had happened and the promise that her daughter was going to have to meet her father for the first time. Fortunately Annie was there to bring her back to the present.
"Holy shit! What just happened?"
"Annie," Lisbon ground out, as if she was just annoyed at her swearing again.
"What?" Annie asked, "I come home and find your baby-daddy here and you aren't going to tell me anything?"
"Stop cussing," Lisbon admonished her.
Annie rolled her eyes. "Dani is asleep and if any time earns a few curses it's when Wonder Boy walks back into your life a month before your wedding." Lisbon groaned and turned away, rubbing her eyes as if that would erase the day's events. Annie smirked. "He knows you are getting married doesn't he?"
"Yes," Lisbon replied, no sense in lying now.
"That's why he came. He didn't want you to get married."
"Jane doesn't know what he wants," Lisbon said, "He just freaked out. He doesn't want me either."
Annie shrugged that off. "But he found out about DJ."
"He saw her picture," Lisbon explained, "That was all he needed."
"Then what did he do?"
She sighed. "Went upstairs, looked at her. Then he came back here and we argued until you came in."
Annie studied her aunt. "So nothing happened?"
Lisbon narrowed her eyes. "What did you think happened?" It only took a second for her to realize. "Oh my God, Annie!"
"You have a history with him."
"Four years ago! And I'm engaged to Chris! Our wedding is in a month!"
"And then the guy you've been moping over for the past four years comes back," Annie finished, "don't lie to me. I know you've been in love with him all of this time."
Lisbon glared at her. "None of that matters. I have to deal with this. I have to figure out what I'm going to do."
"Do you have much of a choice? He wants to see D.J. and from what I know he isn't one to just stand by and wait."
Lisbon couldn't argue with that. "No…but I have to do whatever I can to protect her."
"Yes," Lisbon explained. "Because if she gets too close to him, it'll devastate her when he leaves. I don't want her to be hurt like that. Being abandoned is not something my daughter was ever supposed to feel."
Annie was quiet for a moment before asking softly. "What if he doesn't leave?"
She looked lost at that question before dismissing it. "He won't stay. He never has before. He won't now."
"Do you want him to?"
Lisbon hesitated. "It doesn't matter what I want. I have to face reality." She looked at her niece calmly. "Jane never stayed more than a couple of days. He'll be gone and that'll be the end of it."
Annie raised an eyebrow. "Want to bet?"
She glared at her. "If you are finished being unhelpful, go to your room."
Normally she'd have fought back at such a parental tone but Annie knew when not to push her aunt too far, she didn't want to sleep on a park bench after all. But it was difficult to hide her giggles as she trudged up the stairs. She was kind of hoping Patrick Jane would stick around.
This could be fun.
Coming to Los Angelas had been something of a split second decision for him. Over the past four years he'd kept in contact with Cho, mostly because he wanted to know how the team was still doing without having to endure Grace's attempts to bring him back and he tried to avoid calling Lisbon since he wanted to let her move on. He thought he'd been doing well until Cho had mentioned she would be getting married in a month.
That had killed him.
He'd been surprised by the pain since he'd assumed he had been getting over the idea of Lisbon moving on with her life. He'd stopped calling her when she'd told him she was going on a blind date and he'd even endured Cho's wedding where he had to watch her sit, converse, dance and touch another man. He hadn't begged her to leave Chris at the wedding and if he ignored the fact that he got drunk off his ass for three days afterwards, then he'd done a damn good job of letting her go.
He'd tossed all of that progress away once he learned her last name would be changing in a few weeks. Sure he'd told himself that he had no reason to be upset, he should be happy for her, that she was better off with someone else, someone that wasn't him. But none of that logical advice had kept him from rushing to L.A. in the fastest method of transportation he could find.
Stumbling upon her at the restaurant had been a lucky accident but watching her flee had caused him to doubt his intentions for being there. But the aching feeling in his heart had won the battle, which is why he'd found her address, and gone there to try and convince her not to get married…even if that was absolutely insane. He felt foolish even thinking about it but Jane was also incredibly relieved he went because he knew without a doubt if hadn't then he never would have found out about his child.
Nothing had prepared him for that moment when he saw the picture behind her.
He'd known immediately that it was his child. She looked too much like him, too much like Charlotte. But it had taken a few moments to actually take it all in, to truly understand that he had a daughter with Lisbon. Seeing her helped solidify it, watching her sleep peacefully in her bed, it made it all real, he had a living daughter.
A mixed bag of emotions rolled inside of him, he'd settled on anger since it was the easiest one to feel at the moment and he considered it justified. She should have told him about their daughter, no matter what had happened between them, he'd had the right to know he had another child.
Jane gave her space mostly because he needed time to think and process all of this as well. He wasn't even supposed to be here and suddenly he not only had all but begged her to not get married but he'd found out he had a beautiful little girl. It was more than a little overwhelming.
Somehow he made it to the hotel room he was staying at. For a few moments all he did was stand there, still recovering from the shock. Then he pulled out his phone and called the only other person who deserved his ire.
It might not be a decent hour but Cho still answered his phone after only two rings. "Cho."
"You've been holding out on me," Jane said immediately.
Cho was quiet for a second. "Jane?"
"No need to lie. Of course you knew."
"Where the hell are you?"
Jane sat down on the bed with a huff, the springs squeaking a little. "Los Angelas."
He heard Cho mutter something, or maybe it was a laugh. "Oh. You saw your kid."
Well that confirmed his hunch. "Why yes, Cho I did. And thank you very much for never telling me she existed. A little warning would have been useful."
"Would it have made a difference?"
Jane shook his head. "I should have known about her four years ago."
"You didn't want to know."
Well that threw him. "What the hell does that even mean?"
"If you had cared you would have seen the signs."
"I wasn't around for that," Jane reminded him.
He sighed heavily. "I left because I cared. You know that and so does she."
Cho didn't like that explanation, or maybe he simply didn't understand as much as Teresa did. "You say that but you weren't around when she needed you the most. You were being selfish."
Jane hesitated for a moment, before finally explaining. "She deserved better than me, she still does. It was the best thing for her. I told her that. Staying would have been the selfish thing to do."
"You are both idiots."
"Perhaps. But none of this answers my question. Why didn't either one of you tell me that I had another child?"
Ch replied simply. "Because it was the both of you wanted. You wanted her to have better and she didn't want to be hurt by you again."
Jane didn't like that explanation. "I still had a right to know I have a daughter"
"You did which is what I told her but like you she is too stubborn to let things go."
"Well that's good to know." He replied but he wasn't going to let Cho off of the hook. "Why didn't you say anything?"
"You are asking why I didn't tell my good friend that she should tell the man who left her that she was having his child because if he was to find out one day he might be offend by the fact that she kept it from despite that he said guy is an idiot?"
Jane raised an eyebrow at his choice of words."Even an idiot deserves to know he's a father."
"You need to take that up with Lisbon."
He had to smile there. "Oh you can count on that."
"You know she was only doing what she thought was right."
"So was I."
"And look where it led the both of you."
"Well it's hard to argue with that." Jane sighed and shook his head. A thought occurred to him, something that he was pretty darn certain of. "You knew I'd come here. You knew I'd see her."
"Yes. I also knew that if you saw her that you would see your child and know." Jane Jane sighed again."Thanks. I would have preferred four years ago but better late then never I suppose."
"Go talk to her Jane, fix your mistakes before it becomes too late."
Cho hung up after that, his advice doled out and there was nothing left to say. Jane put his phone down and lay back on the bed, running one hand over his eyes. It was all still hard for him to take. He'd spent the past few years trying to find his life again, attempting to do what was best for the people he loved while staying away from the past that had destroyed him.
That hadn't gone well in the slightest.
Jane stared up at the ceiling, his mind still spinning with what to do next. He had to talk to Lisbon, had to meet Danielle and figure all of this out. Even if he didn't rightly know what the future would bring, it was hard to stop running when it was all he'd known for such a long time.
Something was bothering him, a thought that wouldn't leave him. Jane sat up and reached for the suitcase he'd hastily packed. In one of the ragged pockets was one of his more prized possessions these days. Teresa's book was still in decent condition, even if some of the pages were a big worn after him reading them so much.
He flipped open the cover to the title page and ran his fingers over her signature. He remembered that day in New York when he'd paid a complete stranger a hundred dollars to go inside and stand in line to get a copy of her book signed. He hadn't wanted her to see him but he'd needed to have it signed, it had been so important for him to have a book she'd held, her fingers had touched.
Jane moved past her signature, instead turning to the epilogue in the very back. He'd read this part dozens of times, perhaps hundreds. It had always stuck with him, particularly now.
When the monster is dead there really is only one question left to ask. What now?
That was something that plagued all of us in the days and weeks after it all ended. I'd always pictured a "return to normal" but I didn't realize that after something as devastating as this investigation, there is not such thing as normal anymore. In the end there is really only one thing you can do, try to pick up the pieces.
That is what we did, with varying degrees of success.
Rigsby and Van Pelt did the best, taking their extended honeymoon and then moving out of Sacramento entirely. A better position in a city that didn't remind them of some of the troubles we'd all endured. They have their truly happy ending and I still think about them and smile.
Cho was the one who could internalize it all the easiest. He took a long overdue promotion at the CBI and stayed in Sacramento. He finally has his own team and puts my own leadership to shame. I envy how easily he was able to move past it but he was always the most resilient of us. I'm proud of him.
And finally there is Jane. He was never meant to last with us forever and a part of me knew that all along, as much as I hoped otherwise. After it was all over Jane left just as he came, and as much as it killed me I understand it. He accomplished what he'd come there to do, it was time for him to find a new life, one that was no longer haunted by his family and the monster that took them away. Even if that life took him away from the ones who loved him too. I was sad, I'm still sad but I can't be angry. He left me with memories, a changed life and the gift that I never imagined would happen. All I can do is thank him…and hope one day he finds peace.
Jane stopped reading then and shut the book with a gentle thump.
She'd told him, it was there in print all along. In between the lines she'd spilled her secret but he hadn't even known it. "The gift" was Danielle, the one he'd given without even knowing. The one he'd left behind.
He'd always known it was a mistake to actually go back and be with her, he never should have started that. Of course when it came to Teresa Lisbon he didn't always think straight. Like her, he'd wanted that chance to know what it was like to be with the woman he loved. He had fooled himself into thinking that it was possible, but she was far too good for him. He'd done the only decent thing he could do: leave before he caused even more pain.
And she'd done the one thing she could to make herself even better: give him a child.
The hard part was that Jane wasn't sure if the best thing was for him to stay or go. But for now he couldn't focus on what was best for his child, right now he had to come to terms with the idea of being a father again.
And that would be hardest part.
A/N: Not sure how many chapters this fic will have, not as many as my usual I'm thinking but more than 3 or 4 at least. I already have quite a bit written so we'll see how fast this goes. I still have chapter 6 of Double Talk to work on so I need to get back to that or Donna will hunt me down hehehe. But I hope you guys enjoyed this.