AN: Thanks for everyone that's been patient with this one. I've had one hell of a few months so it's been a struggle to get the last few chapters finished. I had no idea where this was going to go so here you are! Hope you like it, sorry for the slow updates xx
She stood frozen, if they made a scene now they'd cause attention to themselves. It was hard, incredibly hard, to watch as Vaughn was pulled away into the truck.
There were at least thirty men around, all armed. It was impossible for her to get to him and getting captured too would leave them with no escape route. She hoped desperately that he would agree.
They slowly back out of sight and slipped away quietly away from the crash site and into the dry foliage.
She looked up properly at her father as he stood there now, in front of her with a saddened expression.
After about twenty minutes they decided it was safe to talk.
"So you actually came to get us then, I'm impressed." She kept her stubborn exterior and tone but deep down she was pleased to see him somehow. His presence brought with it an era of calm amongst her boyfriend being dragged into Spanish custody.
He look to the floor, looked at her; and then he broke.
"I love you Sydney, you're my most precious possession." He would have practically cried, if he wasn't the great solid CIA agent that he was.
Taking it in, suddenly he swept his large arms around her and squeezed her gently.
He held it for a minute then pulled back. She didn't know how on earth she was supposed to respond. What kind of sneaky tactic was this?
"Sydney, I almost thought you were amongst that wreckage. It could have been you pulled away just then."
She waited some more and now she was sure he was finished she chose to push it.
"What, so now everything is ok now it's Vaughn who will be held in a prison is it?" she remained calm, yet anger had already reunited in her stomach.
This safety he had brought suddenly ran for the hills. He didn't care at all, he just wanted his daughter to be alive. Alive yes, but alright and happy? No bother.
He sighed and she also felt the strain of yet another argument.
"Let's go get him then" He said, but looking to the ground. He'd said it with somewhat disappointment.
That was it, she was done with this.
"I'm going. You can get straight back to America and stay the hell away from us" she told him firmly and began to turn away. She hesitated however, then turned around once more to face him,
"Yes. I said us."
She rubbed it in then turned away to hopefully not see her father for a long while.
It hadn't gone well. But she was alive, she was alive and uninjured from the crash.
He called Director Chase who headed APO at the very top. She could get the authority to get Vaughn out, even if it would take a few days.
He knew Sydney couldn't do anything, it only angered him as he watched her stomp away with that annoying determination to be with him.
He did care that Vaughn was ok, but after today's stunt he wasn't surprised that he got what was coming to him.
A while later.
He didn't want to admit it, but he was getting such a headache from his swollen eye. Thankfully the soldiers had been firm with him but had been somehow generous. They'd not held him too tightly and the handcuffs were left behind. He couldn't get out this small cell, but at least he wasn't shackled to the wall.
His head was hurting more and more now though as Sydney had been mouthing off ever since she'd arrived. It'd taken her awhile so he'd figured she'd walked all the way.
She was getting angrier at them as they continued to refuse to let him go. He was under Spanish authority now which meant he could have been the king of France for all they knew and it wouldn't make a difference.
Being honest with himself, he could tell he'd given up at this point. Normally, hearing Sydney arrive and try negotiate would warm him up to hear and even fill him with some hope. But now he just wanted her to shut up.
He wanted the world to shut up and leave him alone.
The last few days had been probably his worse since getting his life back after Lauren. He could count the numerous horrors of those years and yet somehow the last few events were emotionally, nearly as draining.
Was it even worth fighting for her anymore? He wasn't good enough, Jack was right. Sydney needed someone who could be safe and solid, not whimsy and useless. Which was how he felt now.
He needed to escape everything. Maybe a change would solve things after all.
He'd closed his eyes and must have fallen asleep for some time. When he awoke his eye was throbbing but the bruise felt smaller somehow.
He focused his awakened eye sight and saw to his shock that Sydney was standing directly in front of him, inside the cell.
For a second he panicked, assuming she'd mouthed off to much and got captured too. But then he noticed the door open and a guard lying down on the ground.
He looked at her, really looked. She looked happy to see him but something was definitely wrong.
"Vaughn. We have to go, now" she said calmly. Her soothing voice managed to raise his spirits a bit.
He was still in a blur as at this stage he didn't care what would happen to him. Sydney held his hand and led him out of the small prison. They were in the middle of the wastelands but a plane was just landing.
Whilst it landed, he stole a moment to watch admiringly as Sydney's hair was blown back behind her ears. He stared at her as determination flowed from her being.
She turned to him and looked questioningly at him.
"I love you" he told her. And of course, he meant it.
That was when he finally faded out and suddenly collapsed to the dirty dry earth below him.
Back at APO, the next day.
Wow what a strange week.
He did not welcome such silence in the office but it was practically empty since Sydney and Vaughn had returned. They were at home recovering but Jack had suddenly taken leave, which being the big boss man he was granted.
Director Chase kept emerging, assumingly to keep her eye on Sloane as he took a more superior role. Temporarily, we hope.
So ultimately, as he looked over at Dixon and Nadia staring into space, he knew they'd agree, that APO was one massive weird snooze fest.
God I hope they come back soon. I need to shoot something.
It was very early in the morning in LA. She'd had another weird dream that night about being in a house in France that was suddenly sucked under the earth.
She didn't give it much thought though, she preferred to continue to lie there for a few wonderful minutes, staring at the man lying next to her.
Jack had given up. He'd seen Vaughn at his worse and saw him as he'd been damaged and saddened by those events. After Sydney telling Jack how her newly broken arm was all for him, that she didn't actually care about the danger she was in taking down several soldiers in Spain – because he needed to get out before he had a complete breakdown. She'd told him.
She moved her eyes along his jawline, his chest as it rose slowly then relaxed back down. His eyes were closed but he suddenly smiled. From this side she couldn't see his bruised eye, for that she was thankful.
"Are you awake?" he asked her, quietly. He looked refreshed but his spirits weren't quite recovered yet.
"No" she answered, smiling at him.
His smile broadened. He opened his eyes and moved his head to look in her direction. She winced as she laid sight upon his swollen eye. It'd had gone down a lot at least. Vaughn moved to prop himself sideways on his arm. He looked at her own arm, covered and supported by a cast. He carefully stroked it and looked warmly at her.
"Don't you dare worry about me," she warned him, but playfully.
"It's my turn to look after you. You're not getting way so easily honey." She told him,
He loved it when she used pet names for him. 'Honey' was his favourite. He moved his arm from hers and lay back flat on the bed by her side.
They were cocooned in warmth under their winter duvet. He really did not want to move, and for once he did not have to. Well, not for a while yet.
He watched peacefully for a moment as she gazed at him with those enchanting hazel eyes. This could potentially have been a nice ending to such a horrid few days.
Despite them both being battered and bruised now.
"Sydney." He cleared his throat, she looked concerned.
"There's nowhere else I'd rather be right now. Nowhere else but beside you." He told her soothingly. He hoped she could believe him now after his ridiculous stunt he had pulled.
Jack was still in shock at it all so for now he'd backed down. It was going to be a long struggle, but now he was secure at APO with Sydney by his side, he had his chance to show just how good he will be to her.
She smiled sweetly and leaned over him to place a warm kiss on his head while cupping his cheeks with her hands. Leaning back again she continued to gently stroke his cheek,
"I'll be here, and now it's my turn to look after you."
She hesitated, wondering what she needed to say, Vaughn gave her a reassuring stroke of her hand with his thumb. They each had their own silent tells like a stroke here or there or a soothing stare, often they said more than words could.
She sighed looking at the bed then looked him straight in the eyes.
"It'll be a lot easier to look after you now you're moving in."
He couldn't believe her words for a second. She hadn't even mentioned it before now.
He did practically live here anyway…
"Syd… Are you sure?" He was still concerned about her fear regarding Lauren and the whole mess of entirety that was Vaughn's biggest mistake.
She didn't even flinch however, she was so stubborn and determined sometimes.
"Your key is by the lamp," she told him, moving away so he could turn over and see the bright key just simply laying there on his bedside table.
It looked so mundane, just a key that seemed to have been there for years. Just sitting there with what was essentially Vaughn's future at hand.
He couldn't prevent the huge smile that pushed itself across his face. He suddenly felt Sydney's arms wrapping around his waist and a kiss pressed against his back while he was turned away.
How on earth did I deserve this? He pondered, but not for long as soon the two lovers were once again entwining with each other.
A key lying in wait by the bed.
It was going to be a long struggle, but now he was secure at APO with Sydney by his side, he had his chance to show just how good he will be to her.
Thanks for reading!