Someone To Come Home To


aaron2_icon.gif peyton_icon.gif

Scene Title Someone To Come Home To
Synopsis Peyton comes home after giving her statement to the police about her abduction. Aaron is overjoyed to see her, and vows not to let her out of his sight.
Date August 18, 2009

Peyton's Place - Upper West Side

There's only so much lack of sleep a person can take before they completely crash, and that time has passed. It's only for that reason that news of two socialites being shot at in Brooklyn never reached his ears. It may not have identified them, but Aaron would likely have made the connection. Or well, maybe if he were well-rested and had his wits about him he may have. Stretched thin the last few days as he is, wits are not something he has much of. The door is locked as always, and he's quite literally passed out on the floor. That might make it more difficult for Peyton to get in, considering she no longer has her purse.

Peyton is escorted by a very tall and very wide police officer. She knocks on the door. "I may have to get the management to let me in, if he's not here." She knocks a little harder, wincing as the hard wood takes no pity on her scraped and bruised knuckles. The policeman's there to make sure no one's been to her apartment, as she told the police at the station that she wasn't sure if anyone was staying there or not.

Considering he has no where else to go, of course Aaron is there. It takes him a moment to recognize the sound of the knocks, and his call of "Just a minute," is probably almost inaudible as he manages to rise from the floor and make his way over to door. After the Humanis First news, he's a bit more cautious about just opening the door. Once he sees who's there thought, the door won't open fast enough and he quite literally flings his arms around Peyton to grab her into a big, and — given her state — possibly painful hug. "Thank God," he says, tears freely falling from his eyes. "Ivanov found you." Yeah, he assumes Agent Ivanov rescued her.

The woman gasps as she's grabbed by her new roommate — if she can even remember that far back! "Aaron!" she cries and hugs him tightly. "Ivanov didn't find us. We escaped." She looks like hell — there's a hole in her jeans, blood on the lower part of the leg, hands scraped to hell. But she's alive. "Thanks, Officer Milton," she tells the tall cop. "I appreciate the walk to the door." She gives him a bright smile, considering what she's been through.

"Not a problem, Ma'am. I'll go talk to the management about the various safety procedures we're putting in place. They should be up to re-key you momentarily. Until then, lock the chain and be careful who you answer to." He glances at Aaron. "Take care of this little girl. She's been through a lot." He gives a small bow and leaves.

"Won't let her out of my sight," Aaron manages to stammer out amidst the tears, which he promptly wipes onto his sleeve, ushering Peyton into the apartment and closing the door and latching it. If the thing had a dead bolt or three he'd lock them too. He feels energy coming back to him, mainly because she needs him right now. How could she not? He relinquishes his hold on her.

"I got your texts, called the police, and went straight to Old Lucy's. I found Ivanov there and told him everything." He leaves the part out about him freaking out and thinking she was dead. He can't help but notice the state of her, and so he asks, "Do you want me to run you a bath?"

"Oh, God, yes, please!" Peyton says, hugging him again, and kissing his cheek. "Thank you. For helping. For going to the police." She's a little teary-eyed herself — part of her wondered if anyone would even notice that she was missing, if anyone would even care. "I appreciate it. So much." She wipes her eyes, and smiles, and releases him.

She heads to the coffee table, looking on it for the napkin with Gina's number on it that she knows she left there after programming it into her text.

Thanks to the kiss on the cheek, some colour actually manages to show up on Aaron's face, a great contrast to the otherwise unhealthy pallor. It's only when Peyton goes to detach that he lets go of her, and he goes off silently to start a bath for her, adding bath salts and lavender oil. A nice hot bath after all of that madness will be the first step to recovery. Once the water is up to what he deems to be an acceptable level for thorough soakage, he turns off the faucet and comes out to get Peyton. "Your bath is ready," he says. Not that he'll let her go off without another hug.

While Aaron runs the bath, she calls Gina, getting voice mail. "It's Peyton. I'm safe, and home. Sorry if my pages scared you. I lost my cell — reach me at this number." She rattles off her home number, and hangs up.

"Thank you, you're a godsend," she says, slipping into the bathroom. She does not close the door all the way — enclosed spaces are something she'll be avoiding for some time. A moment later she's in the bathtub. "Sit in the hall and talk to me?" she calls to Aaron. "How have you been? You look worse than me." It's said with what sounds like a smile. It means something to her, that he cares what happens to her.

She saved his life. How can he not care what happens to her? Besides, they have similarly tragic history with the Bomb. Aaron sits down in the hall and leans against the wall right next to the bathroom door. "I've been worse," he says. "Kind of tired right now, really." Because he's been glued to every form of news media and too panicked to sleep, and after seeing the Humanis First video, well, he hasn't been able to eat much, either. And that's made him more tired. He sniffles slightly and wipes away more tears onto his sleeve. "I missed you," he says, "I'm so glad you're back. And safe."

Peyton closes her eyes and dunks under the water to wet her hair, then grabs some shampoo and pours it in her hand. She'll have to rinse with the nozzle after, since the water will be filthy with all her blood and dirt seeping off of her. "I … they said they showed the video?" she says in a small voice. Somehow she hoped no one would see that. She knows that it's things like that that make little Evo kids kill themselves with special kool-aid like those kids earlier in the year.

And makes grown Evos have to clean up their own vomit. "I thought I'd never see you again," comes Aaron's voice, equally small. He didn't really wan't to be reminded of that horrible video. He doesn't voice anything else, like how he thought they'd never find her, or wouldn't find her in time. Numerous times he had tried to bring himself to communicate in some way with the Suresh Memorial Center, begging them to comply with the demands. He brushes a hand down one of his arms, wincing slightly from the sores beneath. He thought she'd die.

"I'm okay," Peyton says, picking up the hand nozzle and turning the water back on so she can rinse the shampoo out of her hair. "I'm sorry you had to see that. Really, really sorry. I hoped no one would." She replaces the nozzle and leans back in the hot water, letting it ease away her aches and pains. It stings the cuts but in a good way. "If you want to sing, you can," she offers — knowing it will help him as much or maybe more than it helps her. Her fear is greater than her sorrow right now, but there is still sorrow.

"I think," Aaron says as he yawns, "That I need to sleep more. I'll still be out here if you need me, but…" and with that his voice trails off, exhaustion consuming him. He slouches back a bit more, but otherwise remains still and immobile. Peyton's home. He can finally rest.

The water's getting cold. Peyton gets out of the tub, wincing a bit as the air hits the wet and injured leg. She pulls off the gauze that the EMT taped on it. One towel for her body, and one for her hair, she then brushes her teeth and washes her face with the fancy French face soap that promises to keep her skin looking healthy and prevent aging. All clean for the first time in five days, she is ready to sleep in her own bed.

But … there is the small problem of the boy asleep in the hallway. She steps over him carefully, then heads into her bedroom. She pulls her hair into a ponytail, tying it off with a band she grabs from her dresser. After pulling on a little nightie, she gathers two pillows and a blanket. These she carries back to the hallway.

Kneeling, she tucks one pillow under Aaron's head, and then curls up next to him. Waking in an empty and quiet room is not what she needs right now.

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