Series: - No Series - #1
Chapters: 001 Word Count: 1143
Warning(s): Character Death
Character(s): Ziva David, Caitlyn (Kate) Todd, Ari Haswari
Category(ies): Angst/Drama, Romance
Pairing(s): - No Pairing -
Summary: Her lover is gone. Ari is dead. And the worse is that she can't share this pain with anyone.
The glass in front of her is refilled for the tenth time tonight and like the first nine times its contents immediately disappears, burns her throat and leaves her mouth in need of another one.
The nice bartender’s smile has faded since the third drink and the glare which has followed his attempt to know “what kind of men could cause so much pain to a beautiful woman like you”.
She is starting to regret her high-school years when she needed just a beer or two to get drunk and crazy and unable to remember anything in the morning. Vodka doesn’t even do it for her tonight and she’s beginning to understand why Gibbs only drinks bourbon now.
There is a young couple dancing next to the jukebox, actually almost humping considering the movement of their hips and the furious kisses with which they’re eating each other faces. They have chosen “Alone again (naturally)” by Gilbert O’Sullivan as background music and for a few seconds she considers shooting them right there, wonders if she’d have problems for that and decides she can’t do it. Too much paperwork and she’s really not up for it right now.
She is in this bar, tonight, because she can’t be at home without thinking about him. He is still all over her apartment.
The air of her bathroom is perpetually filled with the strong scent of his cologne, in her fridge, there is a bottle of Chardonnay they forgot to drink last time he was there. She remembers stealing it from his hand while greeting him with a kiss and delicately putting it on her kitchen counter and before she could make another move, her back was against the cold wood of the table, his teeth on her neck, his nose against her pulse and his demanding hands under her skirt.
Every time she sits on her couch, she lies on her bed or she takes a shower, her mind is assaulted with memories of kissing, touching, biting, loving and more images of being kissed, being touched, being bitten and above all being loved by this man.
Her lover is gone. Ari is dead. And the worse is that she can’t share this pain with anyone.
Secret relationships, forbidden loves mean that when the very subject of your love dies you can’t jump in your friends’ arms in need of reassuring words and unconditional love. Especially when your friends are thrilled by the news of your lover’s death.
She has been mean to Abby today, knows it and feels bad for it. They were both in the lab when her friend pointed out how relieved she should feel now that the man who held her hostage twice was definitely gone and she unfriendly retorted that the lab tech had never even met him, that she didn’t know what the hell she was talking about and so, that she shouldn’t try to tell her how she felt about it.
It has been mean and unfair. Kate knows too well how bad Abby had felt during the hostage situation in the morgue and how much she had seen the whole team affected by this man.
She hasn’t had the courage to apologize and left quickly, a shocked Abby behind her.
She is caught in the observation of the bottom of her glass, debating whether to ask for another drink or go to another bar – anywhere but that apartment - when a woman sits on the barstool next to hers. Her beautiful dark curl brush Kate’s right arm and she shifts uncomfortably. Before she can raise her head to see the face of this new intruder, the woman is speaking to her.
“You’re Caitlin.” And it’s more a statement than a question. A shiver runs up and down her spine, it’s the closer thing she’s ever heard from Ari’s voice.
She remembers how he used her given name deliberately, aware that she had always preferred being called ‘Kate’. She remembers the first time he said it, years ago, in the morgue. And she remembers the first time – of their private life – he whispered it in her ears.
She’ll always have this memory. It was about five months after the incident at the farm, she had come back from work, drained and in need of a hot bath and when she’d opened the front door of her apartment, she’d found him sitting on a chair, in the middle of her kitchen. Before any of them could make a sound, his forehead had been at the wrong end of her Sig Sauer. She had been proud of herself and her quick reflexes but quickly this infuriating smile had appeared on his face, reaching his eyes as he’d held a glass of wine in each of his hands, explaining to her the subtlety of the flavour and the aroma of the French beverage.
She had been helplessly amazed by him. Her hand had slowly lowered, the smile had turned into a smirk and she’d instantly known that she had lost the battle. But, that night, as she had fallen asleep – hickeys on several embarrassing part of her body, the taste of his mouth, and his neck, and his chest and his stomach and much more of him on her tongue – she’d thought that if every defeat was so sweet and so good and so enjoyable, maybe losing, for once, wasn’t that bad after all.
He had spent the whole night whispering low “Caitlins” against her skin and today when Gibbs has told her, hours ago, the news of Ari’s death, Kate has promised herself never to let anyone else use this name again, until she heard it from this particular woman’s mouth.
She raises her head, turns toward the strange and finds her lost lover in two piercing yet gentle dark eyes. The tears she also found glistening there mirror hers and memories of nights in Ari’s arms, listening to his rare confessions about his family, suddenly rush through her mind.
“You’re his little sister, right ? You’re Ziva.”
Instead of a vocal acquiescence, ‘Ziva’ catches her new sister’s cold hand in her warmer one and entwines their fingers, stroking the pale skin with her thumb.
“He really loved you.” Kate hears her whispering, shivering with the soft Israeli accent.
“And I loved him so much.” She lowly answers and it feels so good to finally be allowed to say it aloud.
And for the first time since they learned that Al-Qaeda has ended the life of the man they had both loved, in a cold street of London, Kate and Ziva let the tears fall, together.