callmeonetrack: (Default)
[personal profile] callmeonetrack
Fic: Aftermath
Pairing: Kara/Lee
Rating: NC-17
Length: 2686 words
Summary/Prompt: After Zak dies... (Not sure where this came from....maybe N_T? maybe here when I was asking for prompts?)

Numb, Lee sits on his sofa and looks at the clock again. It's 8:15 on a Wednesday night and the fifth time he's checked in the past 15 minutes. He should just turn in early, try to sleep. He'll need it tomorrow when his mother and father are in the same room for the first time since...he can't remember.

In the morning, he's going to get up and put on the uniform he hasn't worn since his last Reserves duty weekend and go to the cemetary to bury his little brother.

The thought alone pins him to the couch like an anchor. He rubs a hand over his dry and swollen eyes and pours another tumbler of whiskey. Lee takes a long pull from the glass, and his gaze skips to the door and then to the clock again.

She's not coming.

He wonders how many flavors of frakked up it makes him for even hoping. Lee can't help it though--it's pure habit now. Kara's been meeting him at his apartment every Wednesday for the past four months. Zak has--had, he thinks, heart clenching--a weekly tactical class starting at 0800.

This is stupid and wrong. He should just try to sleep.  Lee downs the rest of his drink in one straight shot, stands and is almost at the kitchen when he hears the knock.

He can’t believe it; he turns and stares at the door, frozen. The knocking gets louder, almost a banging, before it suddenly stops. And then Lee lurches forward, the empty glass still clutched in his hand. Six long steps and he tosses it to the carpet, wrenches the knob and pulls the door open wide, but she's already moving away, halfway down the hall.

"Kara!" His cry is loud and strangled with panic, but she turns. Under the hallway’s fluorescent lighting, Kara’s face is deathly white, the red rimming her eyes making her pupils look very green. For a second, they both just stand there staring. Fear that she'll come to her senses and leave wins out though, and Lee takes another hopeful, hesitant step forward but then Kara's moving too, fast strides, nearly stumbling as she launches herself into his arms.

Relief and guilt pull at him, but, mostly, Lee feels so very grateful he can hardly breathe. He pulls Kara tightly to him, greedy for the contact, and buries his face in the crook of her neck. Her fingers dig into his back just sharp enough to hurt, but he savors the pain. Since he got the call this morning, his mother sobbing almost too hard for him to make out the awful news, Lee’s barely been able to think of anything except this moment, when he would see Kara. It’s twisted, but she’s the only person who could possibly understand. Not just the grief, but the guilt.

Lee straightens and reaches up, hand smoothing her hair back, but Kara leans in, pressing her forehead to his. “I know this is—“ she sucks in a hard breath, “I shouldn’t—“ her voice breaks on a swallowed sob and she pulls Lee tighter to her, presses her mouth to his and whispers against his lips, “But I had to see you.”

Her whole body shudders in his arms, as she lets out a breath, warm air ghosting over his lips. Lee feels the same relief, and gathers her closer into a tight hug. His fingers thread through her hair, cradling her head against his shoulder. “I was waiting for you.”

“I just—I can’t believe he’s gone,” she murmurs against him.

“I know. Neither can I.”  He hears her sniff and her chest swells against his, breath hitching. Lee feels a tickling sensation against his collarbone. She’s crying. It stuns him for a second, only because he’s never seen Kara cry and Lee feels tears prick once more at his own eyes. He blinks them away to find, Kara staring solemnly at him, silvery tracks on her cheeks and a look he can’t read in her eyes.

“Lee,” she says after a few seconds, and there’s something in her tone that sends an icy shiver down his spine. “We should talk,” she says, and Kara takes a step back, pulling away from him until they aren’t touching at all. She folds her arms across her middle and her teeth worry her lower lip. Her eyes lower to his chest and she stares as she speaks, “I picked up the phone a hundred times today to call you. I- I should’ve told you before, but I just…“ Lee watches the quiver of her throat, dread churning in his stomach, as her eyes finally, hesitantly skip up to his. “I have to tell you that I—“

No.” He says it with force and Kara’s eyes widen, but she stops talking. “Just...don’t, Ok? I know what you’re going to say.”

Her brow creases. “You do?”

He does. Of course, he does. She’s going to say this has to stop. That they can’t do this anymore, because it was awful before when Zak just didn’t know, but now that he never will, it’s somehow worse. But he’s weak. Lee can’t—he knows he can’t get through this without her—and he can’t even begin to think about what happens after tomorrow. When his brother will still be gone but life will go on, everyone, even them, will pretend to go back to normal. Except nothing between them has ever been normal and now he has no idea how it ever could be.

Lee knows he’s going to lose Kara, too. He knows it.

But he’s not ready.

He rubs a hand over his unshaven cheeks, shaking his head. “Maybe this makes me the most selfish bastard in the universe. But I can’t, I just, I can’t tonight, Kara. After tomorrow, we can, we will talk. I promise,” He reaches out for her again, squeezing her shoulders and stepping in close.
“But right now I just really….” Lee’s talking faster and faster, rambling in his desperation. He is aware he’s on the verge of begging and completely unashamed. He’d gladly drop to his knees if it would convince her to stay. Lee presses his lips to Kara’s forehead, and murmurs into her skin, “Please, I just need you tonight. Please.”

She is quiet, unmoving, for what feels like forever, and then she whispers, “Okay,” her arms lifting and winding around his neck.

Relief fills him and Lee exhales, his shoulders relaxing as he pulls Kara tightly to him once more. She sags into him, all the resistance leaving her body, her breath hitching still against his throat. Kara shivers, pressing her face into the space under his jaw.

Closer, he thinks. He just, he needs to be closer to her. On impulse, Lee bends, sweeping an arm under Kara’s knees, and picks her up, cradling her body against his chest. She makes a noise of surprise, but holds on to him, and presses her lips to his jaw. She reaches up, hands cupping his cheeks and tugging his face down, so she can kiss him hard on the mouth.
He kisses her back possesively, his lips and tongue claiming Kara’s. The rush of sensation overtakes him, and his brain blissfully, finally shuts down.

Lee carefully makes his way down the narrow hallway to his bedroom, and it occurs to him suddenly as he steps over the threshold and walks to the bed, lowering Kara onto it, that it shouldn’t be him in this scenario. Zak had planned to do this with Kara; he’d wanted to marry her. They were nearly the last words his brother had said to him. He’d called Lee from the hangar deck yesterday, just minutes before his final checkride, bursting with pride and happiness and hope for the future. For a moment, Lee is selfishly, viciously, unthinkingly glad that Zak didn’t get the chance. And then a fresh wave of shame and self-awareness course through him, and Lee shuts his eyes and hangs his head, the pain so intense suddenly that he can hardly breathe.

Than Kara’s hands are on his face, cradling his jaw, her thumbs wiping his own tears from his cheekbones. She’s whispering a stream of soft syllables, words of comfort, ones he’s never heard from her before. They’ve exchanged joking, teasing banter over card tables and pyramid courts, argued politics or the best way to win a dogfight at the bar, traded darker, private confessions always out of Zak’s earshot. But not here. Their times together have always been physical and intense, fueled by a desperate hunger, lips and tongues busy claiming not conversing. Tonight, this...this is entirely different. He tries not to think about why as they slide off their clothing with shaking hands, bodies rocking together.

Perhaps it’s just perception and imagination that Kara is softer against him, but when she rolls onto her side to face him, her eyes gleam with moisture as they lock onto his. Her touch seems more gentle than he’s accustomed to as she reaches between their bodies, fingers encircling him and stroking with long caresses. Lee dips his head, kissing her neck, his tongue tracing random deisgns on her throat. Kara nestles closer and slides her thigh over his hip, and Lee’s hand drifts down her stomach, between her legs. She’s slick already, and Kara moans quietly as he parts her folds with his fingers. The position is unfamiliar and awkward at first, but Lee shifts, angling his body until his erection is nudging her entrance. Their faces are breaths apart now, and Kara’s eyes lock onto his. She whispers his name and Lee’s breath catches. He grasps her knee, hitching her leg higher against him, and pushes inside her with one steady thrust. The tears in her eyes spill over but she doesn’t seem to notice or care. Kara reaches for his face again, hands cupping his cheeks as she pulls his mouth onto hers.

The universe narrows to the points where their bodies align. He cradles Kara to him, with one hand splayed on her lower back, the other stroking methodically up and down her thigh. He rocks into her again and again, his hips pushing tightly to hers, her gaze burning into his. Looking into Kara’s eyes as their bodies connect again and again is powerful and intimate, and Lee is blissful and lost.

He pulls her closer still, buries his face in her hair and can’t hold back. Lee gasps her name, but he’s already thrusting deep, release coming in waves of unfettered pleasure.

When he comes back to himself, Kara’s watching him with still-sharp eyes and he realizes she didn’t climax. He reaches down, fingers brushing between her legs. But she pulls his hand away, shaking her head. “It’s good. I’m good.” and wraps her arms around his shoulders, rolling on to her back and pulling him on top of her. Lee burrows his head against her chest, between her breasts, his face pressed to her skin. Her fingers slide through his hair, rubbing his scalp. He is wrung out, exhausted, and his only thought is how much he loves Kara and how he can’t bear to lose her too. “Stay with me,” he murmurs into her skin.

Kara stiffens a little, and he raises up on one elbow, traces the side of her face with his fingers. Her eyes are wide and wary. She always leaves him as soon as they’re done, needing to get back to.... needing to get back.

Now she doesn’t.

“Kara, please, just...” he swallows hard. “Tonight...can you stay?”

Her brow furrows and her voice is low and hoarse as she asks, “Are you sure that’s what you want, Lee?”

It’s not what he wants. It’s what he needs. He needs her with him tonight.

He wants her to stay forever.

His voice is husky with emotion too, when he says, “Yeah, it’s what I want.” He knows though that he shouldn’t and Lee has to look down, away from her eyes, as he admits the secret he’d been carrying.

“He called me yesterday morning.” Lee’s jaw tightens and he winces. “Zak- he wanted to marry you, Kara. He was thinking of proposing.”

“What? But we weren’t even...” she lets out a shuddering sigh, her head shaking. “Things hadn’t been good for a while. Obviously.”

Lee takes small perverse comfort in that. He’d never asked Kara to make a choice, too afraid of what she might choose. He’d been selfish and a coward, under pretense of protecting his brother. But the fact that she was here tonight, the way she was here, gave him hope, and hope made him brave.

He takes a breath. “Would you have said yes?”

Kara’s face twists, and her eyes flutter shut. “I love--,” she says, voice shaking and starts again,  “loved Zak.” Lee feels like he’s been kicked in the gut and hates himself for it. “I did--do.” She sighs and her eyes, pained and anxious, open to his. “But...after I heard? The first thought--” Kara pauses and shudders. “The very first frakking  thought I had...” she makes a high, strangled noise, and Lee strokes the soft skin of her cheek. Kara’s eyes lock on his and she lifts a hand to cover his, stilling his fingers, as her voice drops to a whisper, “...was to thank the gods it wasn’t you.”

Lee’s heart swells and he swallows hard.

“I love you, Lee.”

He didn’t know it was possible to be full of such joy and such sadness at once. Lee leans in close, kisses the top of her head and her temple. He breathes into Kara’s hair, kisses her cheeks and eyelids and nose and finally, finally captures her lips. The moment is long and full of bittersweet promise.

“I should’ve told you that before,” Kara says softly, her face full of regret. “And...I should’ve told Zak.”  

Lee shakes his head. “I’m his brother and I’m supposed to protect him. And instead, ever since we’ve met, I’ve betrayed him, again and again in a thousand different ways...” He sniffs, choking back tears, realizing he’s still using the present tense. He cringes.  “I was a terrible brother. I know that. And the worst part, is that, now it’s just-- over. It’s too late. There is nothing, not a thing I can do to fix it, to make it up to him, to do better.”

He takes a deep breath and finally looks back into Kara’s face. “But I don’t--I can’t regret being with you,”  Lee’s voice cracks, as the emotions finally get the best of him. “I love you, Kara Thrace. And I can’t lose you too.”

“You won’t,” Kara hugs him, and they lay quietly tangled together. The knowledge that Kara loves him too, wants to stay with him, is almost overwhelming. Lee hadn’t even dared to hope she felt the same and now his head is dizzy, racing with possibilities, plans. This makes things more complicated.

Kara must be considering them too, because she clears her throat, and turns wide, anxious eyes on him, suddenly, “What are we gonna do?”

Zak might be gone but there are still people who would be hurt, who would disapprove, who would not understand if they were suddenly together. His family, her friends and coworkers on the base. Lee thinks and plots, not liking the idea of hiding his feelings for this woman, the love of his life, one minute more. He’s thoroughly, utterly sick of secrets and lies, and wonders how they might make a fresh start, get a clean slate. But they’re adults, with jobs and rent and full lives. There are no good answers, no magic solutions.

Lee reaches over and smoothes back Kara’s hair. It’ll be messy and difficult, no matter what they choose. But, he also knows, it’ll be worth fighting for.

For the millionth time since Kara Thrace entered his life, he wishes futilely that he’d met her first.

For the first time since his brother left it, Lee Adama smiles, numb no more.

"Whatever it takes, Kara."


Date: 2013-01-16 03:03 pm (UTC)
lanalucy: (Default)
From: [personal profile] lanalucy
Oh. Just.....

This might be the one time, Pre-mini, when they could have acknowledged everything and made the decision to be together, whatever it takes. That would have been a whole different show, perhaps less compelling. It's nice to imagine, though, that they could have made it through and been happy somehow. At least until the Cylons came back.

Date: 2013-01-16 03:15 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]

Hee ;) but yeah had to fridge Zak to make it happen but maybe they could've finally been honest with themselves if it'd gone down like this?

Date: 2013-01-16 05:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
This is really lovely. :)

Date: 2013-01-16 07:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thank you! So glad you enjoyed it! <3

Date: 2013-01-16 10:22 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh, hopeful fic! What an unexpected treat... (much as I love the angst - which you have in spades - sometimes it's nice to get a bonus ray of sunshine).

Date: 2013-01-17 02:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thanks bb! I liked the idea of Zak's death making them realize they've been idiots. ;)

Date: 2013-01-17 03:35 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Everything I hoped it would be only with a happy ending. *happy sigh*

This was great sexy and angsty and just what I needed tonight. :)

Date: 2013-01-17 03:56 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Yay! Glad it hit the spot! :)

Date: 2013-01-17 04:06 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
This was so beautiful it almost made me cry. You are such a great emotional writer Tara!

Date: 2013-01-17 06:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Awwww! Lynn! Thank you so much! You're no marshmallow either so I take that as a very huge compliment! ;)

Date: 2013-01-17 11:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I like how good they are at actually SAYING things here! (Was Kara going to confess her feelings at the start? I thought she might have been ;) Lovely!

Date: 2013-01-18 03:08 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Ha! I re-read it yesterday and was very displeased that I let them yammer on so much!!

Originally when I wrote that part, I thought Kara was going to tell him that she passed Zak when she should've failed him (partially because of guilt over the affair) but then I changed direction a little and went for a happy-ish ending after all, so.....YES. ;)

Date: 2013-01-18 01:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I love the idea of them having an outright affair when Zak dies (YES!). I love Kara's realization and Lee's panic and begging. There's such desperation and longing and I love the dips into canon, "are you sure that's what you want" and "whatever it takes" -- they all evoke those big emotional canon moments. Great!

Date: 2013-01-18 10:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thank you! There were a lot of interesting ways to take this one, but I really liked the idea that they'd been keeping this consistent weekly affair going behind his back and that his death actually pulled their heads out of their asses rather than sending them further apart. And you know, I do love my repurposed callbacks. ;)

Date: 2013-01-18 02:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I've been super busy and haven't had the time to read this fics posted the last week or so. I'm so glad I made the time for this. How sweet. I have to admit I have a love of fics where Kara feels things aren't great between her and Zak. And the joy they can feel in each other when things are so sad is beautiful.

Date: 2013-01-18 10:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I hear you. I've been crazy lately too! Universe needs to slow the heck down.

Kara was so smart and I always thought a shrewd judge of character, even her own, that it's hard for me to write her as being totally blissfully in love with Zak even after Lee comes onto the scene and she nearly sleeps with him. There's a lack of self-awareness in that and I'm not sure Kara could've maintained the denial.

(I wrote a short ficlet recently where Zak suspecting something happened the night she met Lee and baiting her about it made her pretty spiteful and resentful of him. That was fun too!)

Aw the joy! Thank you!

Date: 2013-01-18 11:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Yes! Even if just what we saw in canon was all that happened between her and Lee you would think she'd realize her relationship with Zak had some problems. So I like when she loves Zak but realizes that it really isn't going to work out for them. Thank you for treating Kara better than the show did.

Date: 2013-01-18 05:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Beautiful! Bought tears to my eyes. Interesting idea that they were having an affair when Zak died but even with all that guilt they are willing to fight to be with each other. Wonderful job!

Date: 2013-01-18 10:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thanks Reshma! It was a fun idea to play with the whole four-month-long affair thing. And I thought it would be a nice twist to have Zak's death be a wake up call rather than splitting them apart!

Date: 2013-01-18 09:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
And somehow I'm always ok with cheating if it's Kara and Lee. If only this had happened. Totally realistic and very well done.

Date: 2013-01-18 10:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Thanks so much! If only.... sigh.

Date: 2013-01-19 12:23 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
This is lovely Tara. I really enjoyed the angst and the premise that it was all over with Kara and Zak long before he died. I could see this actually happening if only the two of them could actually talk about their feels! I love that there was guilt there, but that it was acknowledged and somehow I don't judge them for doing the dirty behind Zak's back. The amount of pilots fic that you're managing to churn out at the moment is fabulous!! Keep it coming.

Date: 2013-01-19 12:49 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Aw thanks! I thought it was kind of fun to twist it with them having a somewhat long-running affair. I do seem to be in the groove at the moment! Appreciate the encouragement, bb!

Oh. My. Gosh.

Date: 2013-01-19 04:28 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I've been away for awhile and sick and kind of mopey and I come back and find THIS!

You capture Lee and Kara so well and your writing is such a pleasure to read - even the angsty stuff. Thank you for this. These. All of it. Beautiful!

I love your AUs where Lee and Kara actually COMMUNICATE! Such a novel concept for those two - and some of my favorite but (alas) all too few BSG moments.

I KNEW they couldn't just go their separate ways after the spark and sizzle of that first meeting!

Ah. I am a happy shipper this evening.

Re: Oh. My. Gosh.

Date: 2013-01-19 04:34 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Aw I'm sorry! I hope you feel better soon!

So, so glad you enjoyed it. Thank you so much!

In rereading it, I was actually like -- "Ugh they're communicating so honestly and easily. Who are these people?" Hee. It definitely is a change of pace for them!

Right? If that's how they started out, how could they resist?!

Aw, yay! :)

Date: 2013-01-26 01:47 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Long comment time now! (I'm typing as I read. I want you to have my fresh reactions!)

Wow, Kara and Lee are cheating on Zak! Well, I guess Kara is. But it's his brother. Hmm. I'm not sure what's worse there. Hmm.

“I was waiting for you.”
Aww. He'll always be waiting for her! In my head canon, anyway.

“...was to thank the gods it wasn’t you.”
Ouch! That hurt! Poor Zak. :-( I couldn't have been Lee anyway. Lee's such a better pilot.

Oooh, the fic is over and she didn't tell him that she passed Zak! Interesting. He's feeling all guilty and she's . . . letting him. That will be interesting when they meet again.

But wait! This is AU? Do they stay together? Get married? How would that change what happens when the Cylons strike! I have so many questions!

I will always have questions about pilot fic. :-)

Date: 2013-01-26 02:11 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Hee, thanks for the "live" commentary! I think they'd stay together and get married in a year or so later. I'm sure there'd be some problems/issues before that, but who knows. Maybe Bill wouldn't have even known they were gonna get married?

He feels guilty that he wasn't a better brother because of the affair. Kara telling him she passed Zak out of guilt....wouldn't really change that...just be a separate dose of grief. I don't know if Lee would react differently than he did in canon about it. I don't think he ever really blamed Kara for doing something out of love that ended up turning badly. But he blamed his dad so much maybe there was nothing left over...

I imagined cylons never striking in this AU, but who knows? Sometimes that's the best thing about short fics--you don't have to bother with the "ever after" part. :P

Date: 2013-01-26 02:16 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
The passing of Zak was such a big thing not in Lee's head, but Kara's. I mean even I would feel bad. Guy might be alive if not for me, you know? But who knows. He might have died anyway or found another way to fly. He certainly wanted it bad enough.

Yup, that's the beauty of sort AU fic. You don't have to fill in all of the blanks.

And the Cylons never strike! Oooh. You do make me want to go read my Kara/Lee AUs too! Doesn't take much to get me in a piloty mood!
Page generated Sep. 20th, 2017 02:39 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios