I would love feedback, especially since I'm new to this! *g*
Notes: Wow, I've finally gotten to write something new. It has a prospective companion piece that I hope to finish soon. And the title wasn't meant to sound like 'Titanic' it just sorta does. Stop snickering, I'm serious. *g* You might find inaccuracies in my time line, I'm having to work by memory. Two things worth mentioning... One. Nathan is still with the VCTF in my reality. Two. Coop, uh, Coop who? Sorry, I didn't like him enough on the show to write about him now .*g* I've managed to stay up all night working on this because I just couldn't stop, so tell me what you think of this brainstorm okay? Please, I'm close to begging here. :-)
Disclaimer: All characters belong to Cynthia Saunders, Sander/Moses Productions and NBC (anyone else??) They're not mine, I'm just playing with someone else's toys. I promise to return them. Hey, if they *were* mine, Sam and John would already be together... *g* Or at least there would be no new guy (Coop II: Bad Accent Boy, isn't it?) :-)
Looking down at the blonde head resting lightly on his chest, John Grant could help but wonder at how he came to be holding her in his arms. A small smile crossed his face when he noticed she had fallen asleep. The couple had stayed in that evening to watch a movie. Quiet nights at home were rare, and thus valuable.
They had been friends for over two years when each realized there was something *more* between them. He had known he could love her from the moment he laid eyes on her, he realized. He brushed a stray hair away from her forehead so he could look down upon her face. John sighed, he couldn't believe that he could be so happy just holding her.
The movie had ended some time before, and he half noticed that a info-mercial was filling the screen. After punching the off button on the remote, silence surrounded them. There was a blanket lying across the back of the couch, and he pulled it to cover Sam's curled up form.
His eyelids half-closed, he remembered the circumstance which had brought them together. They had been working a gruesome case, involving a serial strangler. The days at work had grown longer and longer, and Sam and John had spent more and more time together.
He had known, even after the initial hostility between them, that she was exactly what he wanted in a partner. Not a partner in work, but in life. Over time, he grew more accustomed to ignoring his developing emotions. It grew easier to hide his reactions to her voice and her touch.
All of his work at concealing what he was feeling was shattered when the suspect grabbed her from behind a pile of crates. John's world stood still, and everything he ever felt for Sam was played out on his face right before her eyes. John advanced on the crazed man who was holding a wire around Sam's throat, her eyes were open wide and staring at John.
Looking back on the situation, he could remember talking to the suspect. John knew logic would have little effect, but he wanted to shake the guy up. As he spoke, he inched closer and closer to where the two stood. The man's eyes were frantic, looking everywhere around the room. His hold on Sam slackened, and when John realized the extent of the distraction he grabbed her arm, wrenching her away to relative safety.
He wasn't sure exactly what happened next. Suddenly the man regained his composure, and the next thing John was aware of was a tightening around his throat. He forced himself to be calm, but it was hard when he was steadily losing the battle to breathe. Looking up with bleary eyes, he saw that Sam had found her gun from where it had fallen on the floor. He thought he could hear the sounds of approaching help, but couldn't be sure it wasn't just deafening noise pounding in his ears because he couldn't breathe.
The last thing John was able to see before his eyes slid shut was Bailey arriving and rasing his weapon. He felt a hand on his forehead, and struggled to focus on the figure floating above him. Eventually he was able to make out Sam's face and was taken aback by the sight of tears in her eyes. Before losing the struggle to stay awake he heard her whispered question. "Why?"
Paramedics arrived quickly and checked John out. Going against Sam's protests and medical advice, he insisted that he be allowed to go home. John complained loudly that he wasn't hurt that badly. It was nothing that a night of sleep wouldn't cure. Just before he walked away, he looked over to where Sam was standing. He couldn't decide exactly what emotions he saw playing across her expressive blue eyes. He was sure he saw guilt, although he didn't understand why. Apprehension flickered within them, and love he thought. Shaking his head sadly, he turned and walked away. No, he believed, it could never be love. No point in deluding himself with hope.
Later that night John was flipping channels aimlessly on his television when he heard a knock on the front door. Deciding that his t-shirt and sweat pants would do, he glanced through the peep hole to see Sam standing outside. He opened the door to let her inside.
Glancing at him, she crossed to sit on the couch. He watched as she sat down, her arms folded tightly across her chest. He was almost scared to move over beside her, he was confused as to why she had shown up on his doorstep. A minute or so later he shook himself out of his stupor and offered her a drink. He knew he could use one all of a sudden.
The awkward silence grew so thick, that when she finally spoke he almost jumped. "John, I... I wanted, no I needed to know why. Why did you let him grab you like that?"
Her eyes met his and he was startled by the raw emotions swimming within them. He couldn't imagine why she would be feeling anything other than professional concern. "Why? Why do you even need to ask? How could I have done anything else?"
Sam was shaking her head as she listened to his explanation. "No. What you did went beyond simply helping out a fellow agent. There were other ways you could have dealt with the situation. John... Your throat..." Subconsciously he raised his hand to the livid red mark that slashed across his throat, a reminder of what he was willing to do to keep Sam safe.
Lowering his head he whispered, "I had to do it." Rasing his head to search her eyes he silently plead with her to understand. "It wasn't about me, don't you understand? I did what I had to do to keep the woman..." He broke off his sentence when he realized just what he was about to say.
"John, today showed me something. Something I've been trying to deny." He noticed she looked slightly uncomfortable, but recognized the look of determination that shone on her face. "I can't describe how much you scared me. It was reckless, it was stupid. And it made me love you even more than I did." John forgot to blink, he couldn't breathe. In his mind he could only hear her words, 'it made me love you.' "I didn't want to love you John, I never wanted to leave myself that open again. I don't have a choice, I guess maybe I never did."
John knew he should respond. He knew he needed to say something, but he couldn't form words. He saw the way Sam was looking at him. He didn't want her to regret telling him. Finding his voice, he answered. "I never imagined I'd hear you say that. Don't you see? That's why I had to help you today. I didn't care what happened to me. I love you. You were in danger, and I did what I had to do."
John was reeling. He could see tears again filling her eyes. Suddenly the magnitude of what they had each just said hit him. There was no going back. He moved to stand by the window, looking out at the city. His mind was running a mile a minute with no signs of stopping.
However when he felt Sam standing beside him, her hand on his arm, his heart stopped. Turning his head to look at her, he couldn't help but smile. He pulled her into a tight embrace, kissing her on the top of the head.
He shuddered, closing his eyes, when he felt her run her fingers along the line that had been cut into the skin of his throat. "How do I ever thank you?" He reopened his eyes to look at her in the moonlight when he heard her whispered question.
His blue eyes looked longingly into hers when he breathed, "Just love me, and let me love you. That's all I could ever want."
Sam responded, "Now that I have you, I'll never let you go," and pulled him to her in a tender kiss.
John wasn't sure how long he had been sitting on the couch, cradling Sam while she slept next to him. Without thinking about it, he reached up to touch his throat where the cut had been. He didn't regret it, he knew that he would do it again without hesitation. All he needed to do was to look at the woman lying by him.
Kissing her on the top of her head he whispered, "I'll never let you go, either. I promise." His eyes growing heavy, John drifted off into a peaceful sleep. His arms curled around Sam protectively, he dreamt of other, happier, times they'd shared.
Always remember to forget
The friends that proved untrue.
But never forget to remember
Those that stood by you. --- Irish Blessing