Deep In My Heart


des2_icon.gif richard_icon.gif

Scene Title Deep In My Heart
Synopsis With things on the verge, Des makes a decision she'd been delaying.
Date December 22, 2018

Safe Zone

“We’re back on this again?” Des’ laugh is soft, with a husky quality to it as her lips just barely brush against Richard’s. “They’ll have me hanged, my love.” Now her mouth crushes against his to silence his protest, eyes going from half-lidded to shut.

This may be her last chance to have him like this. Where he’s hers. Even if that’s never been the case. From the start, she’s always known he belonged to someone else. Himself, first and foremost. Knowing they stand on the precipice of great and irrevocable change has made her heart ache painfully in her chest.

When their lips part again, she presses a finger to his instead, eyes pleading for his silence just a little longer. “I’m worried it could be entrapment. Worried for you. What if they go after you for aiding a fugitive? I could never live with myself.”

Her lips quirk up faintly, her fingers slide away. “I suppose I wouldn’t have to do that for very long, would I?”

“You are not going to get hanged,” Richard replies with a heavy sigh, hands sliding along her back down to the base of her spine, his head tilting to rest his brow against hers, “You’re not. It’s not entrapment, either— if it was just the government, yes, absolutely.”

“Instead, it’s— “ He pauses as he considers how to phrase things, “…the shadowy organization that controls the government that I accidentally created through time travel and oh god this is the second time one of me has done that.”

He rolls his eyes briefly to the heavens, then looks back to her with a crooked smile, “Look. It’s going to be fine. Well, it might suck, but you’re not gonna die, and they’re not gonna go after me— if they wanted to, they have enough evidence, honestly.”

“That is not the most reassuring thing you could have said,” Des points out gently, poking him in the ribs lightly. “They don’t work for you. Just because you allowed them to take power doesn’t mean they owe you anything. People with power don’t care who made it possible for them. Trust me on this.” Not that that’s a lesson she expects he needs.

Sighing quietly, a frown settles in. “I want to trust, but… This is your government, not mine.” The last iteration of it wanted her dead. This version doesn’t look too kindly on the actions she took in the name of… whatever conviction it was she fought for. Survival always has a nice ring to it.

“I suppose there’s nothing to be done for it.” One thumb traces over the curve of Richard’s jaw as a fond smile overtakes the frown. “I’ll do it this time. I can’t risk you getting into trouble for not bringing me in.”

“Claudia owes me her life,” says Richard firmly, “And she knows that’s a heavy damn debt to hold. Alice and Sabra maybe not, but…” He shakes his head, “I know. I know. But we can’t have you just… running all your life, Des.”

He turns his head, lips brushing her thumb softly, “I’ll be there with you. There’ll be prices to pay, but they won’t be your life, or some oubliette.”

“You realize it’s utterly ridiculous that you’re on a first name basis with the shadow government, right?” Des quirks a brow and looks for a moment as if she might laugh at the absurdity. Instead, she shakes her head, dispelling the momentary humor. “I need to be there when the portal opens.” The gravity of that situation weighs heavily on her and it brings a seriousness back to her features. “I’ll do whatever it takes to make that happen. They need me. I…”

Des steps away and wraps her arms around herself as she gives Richard her back. “I can feel it.”

“My life became ridiculous a very long time ago,” Richard points out, his lips twitching in a smile before it fades, “I don’t… mnm.”

He steps closer, reaching to wrap his arms around her midriff, head tilting to sigh near her ear, “I want you there, and I know Liz and your alternate would, if we can do it with Mateo… if we need to use the machine, though, you shouldn’t be anywhere near it. It’s less— controlled. The chance of the Entity reacting would be… dangerously high with you near it, I think.”

The muscles in Des’ face twitch in a wince at the mention of Elisabeth. “I’m sure she would,” isn’t quite bitter, but there’s more than just a note of unhappiness to her tone. “I never— Nothing’s tried to possess me yet. I don’t think—”

What she thinks doesn’t change reality and the danger represented. Des presses her lips together and tips her head against his gently in a show of affection. These will be a thing of the past before long. Quietly, she hums a sound of defeat. “I get it. I’ll do what you need me to do. But I won’t be far. Once it’s done, I’ll surrender completely.”

“You’re going to have your life back, lover,” Richard says, the side of his head bumping back against hers and pressing there lightly, his eyes closed, “I promise. If there’s one thing I can do to fix all the shit that you’ve had to go through… it’s that. You’ve been running long enough.”

Softly, “I’ve missed seeing you around every day.”

Blue eyes squeeze shut and tears spill down her cheeks. “I know.” Des relaxes into the embrace, her back resting against his chest. She sighs. “I don’t know if I look forward to what life is going to look like from here, but… At least it won’t be exile on Staten Island anymore.” Even though she’d lived as much of the good life as there seemed to be had there. It could have been far worse if she hadn’t managed to fall in with Alister Black.

“Maybe they’ll let me play chess with Mohinder,” she quips. She can still scarcely believe the man turned himself in when he had the perfect chance to escape everything he was forced to do. It’s the very thing that doesn’t give her much hope for her own chances.

Finally, she turns around again, resting her hands on his shoulders. “Richard, I… When Elisabeth gets back…”

Everything will be the same between us and nothing will change are the words that Richard wants to end that sentence, but he’s not naive enough to believe they will be. She turns, and his hands rest on her hips as he looks back to her with a slightly-furrowed brow.

He doesn’t speak, doesn’t try and guess what she’s going to say next— afraid of what it is, he listens and waits, brow knitted in worry and gaze searching hers.

Maybe part of her wanted him to protest. To tell her that nothing had to change. She knows a part of her wanted him to say that he would choose her. But from her perspective, Richard has the luxury of not needing to choose.

Des smiles sadly. “This will be over.” She presses a small kiss to the corner of his mouth. “I can’t watch you with someone else. Especially not someone who makes you look the way you do when you’re talking about her.” She smooths out a wrinkle in his shirt at his shoulder.

“It is what it is. I’m not upset.” Not any more than seems reasonable to her, at least. “This was grand. I’m not sorry it happened. I’m not sorry it’s going to end the way it’s going to end. Besides,” her smile widens, a glint of mischief in her eyes to match the unshed tears, “it’s going to be hard to carry on a relationship from prison.”

“Des…” Richard trails off from whatever he was about to say, knowing that to protest, to argue, would be asking her to change who she is and what she can and can’t accept. He doesn’t have that right.

His hands slip down, and fall to his sides, and he looks away; closing his eyes for a moment before saying quietly, “Alright. If that’s— if that’s how you feel, I understand.” A turn of his head back, a sad little smile touching his lips as he brings a hand up, fingers brushing her cheek, “Not going to change how I feel, though, you know.”

“If you think I can switch off love like a light switch, well… That would be a hell of a superpower.” She doesn’t relish ending their relationship. “It’s going to be hell. I already hate myself, but it’s…” Des shrugs her shoulders. “It’s safer this way, ultimately. We’ll always know, but we can just… pretend it never happened. No one else needs to be the wiser.”

It isn’t Elisabeth (or even Monica) that she’s worried about, but what those who hold her fate in their hands would do with that knowledge that puts that look of concern on her face. “Maybe you’re right about love, and that I’ll always be in love with you and it’ll always hurt to look at you with someone else. But maybe I can find someone who’ll look at me like…”

A shake of her head dismisses the thought again. “What I want is for you to be happy. That would be enough.”

“I’m not pretending anything,” Richard replies with a rough snort, thumb grazing the corner of her lips as he cradles her face in his hand, “I’ve spent too much of my life wallowing in secrets, Des. So’ve you. Besides, Liz already knows, and she’s the only person who honestly has any right to anyway. Our personal shit is ours.”

“What I want is for you to be happy,” he says firmly, “And safe. And not having to look over your shoulder every five minutes for a knock at the door.”

“I don’t know what that will feel like,” Des admits, leaning into the touch. “I don’t know if I’ll ever manage to stop looking over my shoulder. I don’t think I get that luxury from the life I’ve led.”

Resting her forehead against his, she exhales a soft sigh. “But I’d like to give it a try.”

“Yeah, well,” Richard’s brow rests against hers, his eyes closing to stop tears that threaten to come, hand sliding to the curve of her neck, “Call me a fuckin’ utopian optimist, but I’m gonna try to give that to you.”

A long pause.

“Assuming the universe doesn’t get obliterated by quantum physics, that is.”

Des chuckles quietly. “I’ve got a good feeling about this one.”

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