Erik and Ryan laid beneath the stairs in the middle of the grassy field.
It was warm, and a gentle breeze was blowing by as the two of them laid back, arms around each other as they stared at the night sky. Both were beyond exhausted, and had been laying out here for the last few hours.
Erik stared up at the vivid sky, looking at the thousands upon thousands of twinkling lights. Suddenly it reminded him of all those years ago with Charles and Raven, searching for others like them.
Ryan remarked, her damaged bloodshot eyes staring upward.
"It certainly is..."
Erik said smiling, kissing the top of her head.
"So what's next?"
"Poland, we'll travel as quickly as possible, use forged papers, lay low in Europe for a bit before moving on."
"You keep a low profile?"
Ryan joked snuggling in closer to her husband. Erik smiled stroking her hair.
"What's in Poland?"
"Our new life, we'll start fresh...live like..."
They gazed at each other before Ryan sadly smiled. You truly believe we can start over?
"I believe we can, as long as we're together."
Staring up, Ryan sighed.
"I slept with Charles."
Erik raised an eyebrow.
Ryan nodded, her eyes guilty as she turned and stared at him.
"A few times, after I came back. There's no point in hiding it. I needed someone once you were gone, someone of comfort and he was there."
"Do you love him?"
"As a friend and a brother, nothing more, nothing less."
"From the pained look in his eyes when you came with me I believe my old friend might think otherwise. I actually believed he was talking about Raven a few days eariler when he said I took her away from him. Looks like there could have been something else..."
"I doubt it, Raven has always been special. I mean look, she had the guts to actually take you on."
Erik smirked again shaking his head as Ryan gently touched his bandaged neck.
"Still, your truly unforgettable my love. He's always wanted what I had."
"That's not true..."
"He's wanted to control me, at much is true."
"He's a good man Erik, I know you believe that."
Erik sighed gently rubbing Ryan's sides.
"I suppose so..."
The two continued laying there before finally Ryan spoke up, clearing her throat slightly.
Erik looked over.
"Damon, that's what I wanted to name our son. Damon."
Erik felt a horrible pain ache in his chest as he laid there with her staring up at the stars. Erik knew loss, his parents, his friends, even Charles and Raven in a way. He had lost ten years as well as losing Ryan, and his son. As much as he wanted to tell her he wanted to keep looking for her, not truly resting until he knew for certain he was gone, he knew after what had happened it was best to take Ryan away from his madness and try to do what Charles wanted them to do. Live as normal people. He had proven his point to the world, and he wanted to make up for lost time. He had Ryan, and that was all that mattered.
"Damon..." He softly whispered under his breath as stared upwards at the sky.
Two years later. - 1975 - Poland
Erik parked his car outside of the brick building in town. Nearly two years ago after much traveling after the incident in DC, they arrived in Poland with news names, and a new start. It took time to keep a low profile, but thanks to Ryan's abilities, they had more than enough to keep them afloat as well as changing their appearance at least while they traveled over seas. Ryan had dyed her hair, and was wearing it long. She had shown Erik, who was growing in a beard at the moment something truly remarkable. Here she had gotten plastic, contacts. He had heard about them, mostly being glass before but nothing this new.
She had shown him as she placed them in, her now damaged bloodshot eyes now back to their normal light golden color. Erik couldn't believe it. She looked just as she did all those years ago on the beach in Cuba when she held his hand and joined his side. They arrived in Poland with their new identities, and started on starting a new life. Their papers were fakes, but good enough to pass and match up with their stories. They were a young couple from Germany and for the first few weeks as they rented a small cabin outside one of the villages they held their breath waiting for any sign. Erik knew he could never set foot in the states again, and as far as he was concerned that was just fine. Ryan changed her name to Magda. Erik at first didn't much care for it, but knew switching their names were a must with the papers. Within just a few months she had gotten herself a job teaching dance at a small studio above a bank in town. Erik got himself a job at a local factory, dealing with metal works of all things.
The money was good, and they had put a down payment on a larger cabin just a few miles down the road. When Erik picked Ryan up that afternoon, he noticed the gleeful way she had greeted him, standing on her tiptoes, kissing him deeply and wrapping her arms around him. Smiling, Erik and her hurried down to the car before Ryan stropped him. Standing again she smiled, and stood up again, leaning against him kissing him.
"It's good to see you too, care for a swim in the pond out back before dinner?"
Ryan smiled before brushing her hair back and staring up at him.
"I have a surprise for you..."
Erik raised an eyebrow.
"Is that so?"
Ryan pulled his hand as the two got into the car. Starting the engine, Erik kept eyeing Ryan with a curious look in his eye. As they drove down the road, Erik made a turn off, before finally parking in front of their home. The two were content living here, enjoying the land, and peacefulness that surrounded it. Many nights they spent swimming in the lake around black, sharing bottles of wine, making love for endless hours, reading, dancing, actually for once acting like a normal couple. All of this pain and death seemed to be behind him. Once they got out, Erik followed her into the house which was cool, and smelt like sage and cedar wood. Ryan opened up the curtains on the bay window that over looked the back yard and smiled, turning, the light catching her face. Erik stood in the doorway, arms crossed and smiling as he stared at her.
"What are you up to?"
Ryan smiled at him as she always did whenever she had a surprise. Opening up the bay windows she shrugged.
"Maybe I'll tell you later..."
Erik smiled before gently raising his hand, pulling Ryan across the hardwood floor straight towards him. Erik and Ryan rarely used their powers besides the privacy of their own home, and even then they were careful, always scared of being found out. Playfully he continued to pull her forward as her shoes went across the floor as she laughed, finally he pulled her into his arms and against his chest. Cocking his head to the side, he smiled.
"What is it?"
Ryan laughed before looking at him.
"I didn't think it was possible after what..."
Her eyes casted a faint glimmer of sadness for a moment before she gazed up at him. It was rare now, even before bed for Erik to ever see her without her contacts. It was too much of a painful reminder of what had happened. Looking at him, she held onto him, hands pressing against his chest.
"I went and saw doctor Neil yesterday...I'm pregnant.
" Erik stared in complete disbelief.
"I wanted to be sure before I told you so I went and saw him."
Erik's eyes filled with faint tears as he stared down at her.
"You're...sure? You're...really sure?"
Grasping onto her, Erik squeezed her with all his might, lifting her off the ground and burying his face against her sweet smelling hair. Softly he began to repeat over and over..
"Thank you, thank you, thank you..."
Seven months later...
Erik stepped into the hospital and couldn't believe his eyes. Ryan sat up, hair pinned up, holding their newborn daughter. Erik had stayed with her through the labor, before finally the doctor calmly excused him to wait outside.
The entire time, Erik fought the urge to twist and destroy metal. He knew if anything happened to her he would completely lose it. Thinking of her before, kidnapped in those labs, their son torn out of her his stomach turned. Finally the sound of cries filled the air and Erik turned towards them, relieved, and more than a little scared. Once he was allowed in, he slowly approached Ryan speechless. She was pale, but still so beautiful. She smiled.
"I would love you to meet your daughter, Nina."
Erik fought the urge to cry, Instead he carefully sat down on the edge of the bed and stared down in complete and utter amazement. Slowly, Ryan handed her over as Erik held the baby girl. She was perfect, Completely perfect. He stared down at his child, feeling the most overwhelming sense of love it seemed dangerous. Holding the newborn against his chest, he closed his eyes and knew from this moment forward, things would be different. Little did he know, he couldn't have been more wrong.