@charis-chan wrote “Can we get Maggie telling Alex she won’t leave but leaves anyway? Cause right now I need to remember that Kara will always be there for Alex and I kinda need that little nudge to finally cry.”
Alex panics – of course she panics – because Kara told her to never let Maggie go, because she almost died and they were supposed to have a lifetime of firsts, and then she went and blurted out the assertion that Maggie should marry her, and it’s typical of Alex, really – becoming a soldier for a man who made her DWI disappear and told her she was special, grabbing Maggie by the forearm and kissing her, hearing that her sister will meet her outside and leaping off of a roof – it’s typical, but god, god, god, now she’s panicking.
She’s panicking because Maggie smiled and Maggie said they’ll talk about it and Maggie keeps reminding her that she loves her, and Maggie keeps telling her that she won’t leave, but Maggie also won’t say yes.
She won’t say no, either.
“So you don’t want to marry me?”
“Of course I do, Alex, I just… I don’t even know what marriage means to you, or to me. But I… I want to figure it out, together, okay? I’m not going anywhere. Okay? A lifetime of firsts, okay?”
Well, maybe it’s the bourbon talking, but Alex could swear they already had their first rejections – Maggie rejecting Alex’s kiss, then Alex rejecting Maggie’s friendship – yet she can’t help but feel a second coming on.
A second rejection.
A more permanent rejection.
Because Maggie is, if anything, making love to her more fervently than ever.
She’s cooking her more meals and she’s taking her on more dates and she’s loving her harder, loving her deeper, loving her even better.
Which Alex didn’t think was possible. But Alex is panicking, hard, because Maggie’s eyes are also red more often. Her breath takes longer – hours, sometimes – to even out in the bed next to Alex at night, and some nights, most nights, Alex isn’t even sure Maggie falls asleep at all.
“You can talk to me, Maggie,” she keeps trying to remind her, but Maggie will shake her head, and Maggie will give her a small smile.
An it’s whatever smile.
It most certainly is not whatever.
But Maggie Sawyer was never one to share her thought processes, her pain. Her agony.
And she was starting to, maybe.
Starting to, because she told Alex that Alex isn’t supposed to run when bad things happen, because there are always bad things happening in their lines of work.
Starting to, because she loves her. God, she loves her like she’s never loved anyone else.
But she can’t love her – not fully, not yet, not the way she wants to, not the way that Alex deserves to be loved – because the core of her love for Alex is self-loathing. A constant, gnawing sense that she doesn’t deserve her. That she’ll take their lifetimes of firsts and blow it up.
Like she did with Eliza. Like she did with her parents. Like she did with Emily.
She tells her she won’t leave, but one day, she packs her bags. She packs her bags and she kisses her hard and soft and grateful and sorry and loving and hating and needy and broken, all at the same time.
She tells her she won’t leave, but one day, she kisses her and she rides off on her Triumph with a promise to text and to call, when they’re ready. If they’re ready. If Alex still wants to – wants her – once she’s explored herself more, explored her other options more. Once Maggie learns to love herself a little better. A lot better.
She tells her she won’t leave, but one day, Alex breaks in her little sister’s arms.
She breaks and she screams and she kicks and she hits at Kara’s chest, her arms, her shoulders, and she sobs until she can’t breathe, sobs until she hiccups and curses and hits some more.
Sobs until the remnants of Maggie’s name are shards stuck in her tongue, are tears streaked all across her face, is snot dripped all over Kara’s shirt.
“I am so proud of you,” is all Kara whispers, over and over and over.
“I am so proud of you, Alex,” she tells her without stop, without pause, without hesitation.
“I’m here, I’m here, I’m here.”
“Maggie said – “
“Shhh, I know. I know she did, Alex. But I’m your sister. I’m your sister, and you’re my best friend, and I will always, always have you, just like you always, always have me. I got you, okay? Just like you’ve always got me.”
“Kara,” Alex breaks again, her sister’s name a balm in her throat.
“I love you, Alex. I love you, I love you, and I am so, so proud of you.”