He woke up with a pounding headache, but a feeling of peace he hadn't felt in a very long time. He opened his eyes to find the spot where Donna had slept empty, fear rising in his chest at the prospect of her leaving. He then noticed a note next to him.
Went to get some breakfast, didn't want to wake you up.
He smiled at the words, relaxing back in his bed, his hand caressing the empty space next to him. He heard the door open, knowing that she had arrived, before he saw her silhouette by the bedroom door.
"Morning sleepy head" she said with a smile, leaning on the doorframe. She had put on a sweater of his, and it fit her perfectly. She watched him with his sleepy eyes and messy hair, taking in how adorable he looked in the morning, how fragile.
"Hey" he's able to say, his voice still hoarse.
"Sleep well?" she asked, walking towards him as he noticed the cup of water in her hand.
"Very" he answers with a smile. She stopped next to him, handing him an Advil and the glass of water. He didn't even ask how she knew.
"Come on wash up and we'll have breakfast. I'm waiting for you" she encouraged him, before walking towards the kitchen. She took the bagels out of the bags, arranging them on a plate and setting two or them, before pouring the freshly squeezed orange juice in two glasses.
She wouldn't want to admit it, but sleeping next to him was a far different experience than she had expected. She felt at peace, she felt comfortable; she was safe. She remembered how his hand held her close by the waist, how they had somehow ended up spooning, feeling his breath on her neck when she woke up in the middle of the night.
"Earth to Donna" he said timidly, watching her think.
"Sorry" she said, realizing she had been staring at the empty chair.
She sat down and he followed, sitting facing her.
"My favorite bagels" he said with a smile, his eyes thanking her with the sparkle she loved.
"I got orange juice. We can get coffee on our way out" she babbled.
"Are we…going somewhere?"he asked hesitant.
"Oh, I don't why I just assumed we'd be going somewhere after that. It's silly really" she said so quickly, cursing her mind for not censoring her words.
"We could" he said with a sincere smile, as she found herself slightly blushing.
He dived into his first bagel, Cinnamon Crunch Bagel.
"This is delicious" he said, finishing it in a minute. "Which one are you having?" he eyed her curiously.
"Cherry Vanilla" she said, seeing his eyes spark. "Uh-uh. You are not stealing my bagel" she said, moving her finger in a refusing motion.
"Come on, just a bite!" he begged. "What do you want in return?" he asked, seeing that negotiating look in her eyes.
"Your blueberry bagel" she said without hesitation.
"A bite" he negotiated.
"All of it" she insisted.
"Fine" he said with a pout.
He was supposed to be New York's best closer, yet he finds himself unable to argue his way out of a paper bag when it comes to her. She always won the negotiation.
She took it from his plate with a victorious smile, as he watched her bite on the blueberry bagel.
"Hmmm" he heard her moan, suddenly feeling hot. He tasted her bagel too.
"This is not bad" he admitted.
"You know what would taste good?" she asked then not expecting an answer. "Mixing cherry vanilla and blueberry" she said, tasting her own suggestion.
"Try it" she said, extending both her hands, with one bagel in each.
"Oh so now you're sharing?" he teased her.
"Take a bit before I change my mind" she said, quirking an eyebrow. He did as she told him.
"Delicious" he agreed.
They finished eating and drinking, a small silence settling between them. They both felt the weight of the words they were waiting for.
"Let's go to the park" Harvey suggested, breaking the silence.
She seemed surprised by his suggestion.
"If you have something to do it's ok" she said, unsure if he really wanted to or just didn't want to make her feel uncomfortable about her earlier words.
"I have nothing Donna" he says, a bit too defeated. Except you, he thought.
His words hurt her. She wanted to say he has her, always. "That's not true" she said instead. "I should pass by my place first though, change. Then we can walk to the park" she explained.
He nodded, calling Ray.
They shared a silent car ride to her place. "I'll wait for you here" he said, standing outside her building door.
"Come up" she suggested, "it's cold"
"It's ok" he repeated.
She didn't insist, she knew her apartment had become associated with intense moments.
"I'll make it quick" she reassured him, as he nodded.
She came back five minutes later, wearing a light jacket and yoga pants with UGGS boots.
"Ready?" he said with a nervous smile as she nodded
They walked silently, their shoulders bumping from time to time.
He stopped at a coffee cart near the park, ordering two coffees, hers the way she liked it. He noticed how her hands were shivering, his thoughts confirmed by her words.
"I should've brought my gloves" she muttered between her teeth.
He took her hands in his, rubbing her skin for warmth, watching her examine their hands with precaution.
"What are you doing?" she asked him, when he brought her hands to the pockets of his jacket.
"You don't have pockets, put them in mine" he encouraged.
"It's ok" she whispered, not wanting their bodies to be so close.
"Donna" he said, tilting his head, hers mirroring him.
"Harvey" she said in the same tone, before finally giving in. She slipped her hands in his pockets, immediately enjoying the warmth of the soft fabric. He watched her closely, assessing his next steps, before he slipped his hands inside his pockets, holding hers. She didn't object, a sign he took positively, watching her relax, resting her head on his chest.
He wished the coffees weren't ready so quickly, breaking their moments.
They broke their embrace, grabbing the warm cup of coffees and walking inside the park. They settled down on a quiet bench, watching the people passing by.
"What do you want to do now that- "she started, not sure how to finish the sentence.
"I'm unemployed" he continued, a sad smile on his lips.
"You're not unemployed. You just have time to do whatever the hell you want. Maybe start your company" she said, encouraging.
"Nah" he shrugged it off, his finger tracing patterns on the hot material of the coffee cup. "I feel like taking some time off" he explained.
She seemed surprised by his statement.
"Maybe I'll rent a cabin in the woods, spend a year there in solitary, grow a beard" he said from the top of his head, watching her giggle.
"You would look hot" she slipped, an amused smirk on her face when she saw his surprise.
"I'd be lonely as hell" he said more to himself than to her. "Did you just admit you think that I'm hot." he teased her.
"I did not" she negated. "I said you WOULD if you grow a beard" she admitted.
"I never knew you were into beards" he admitted, surprised.
"Would it have made a difference?" she asked with disbelief.
"It would've" he confirmed, a silence dawning on them once again before she spoke.
"Seriously though" he said, his tone serious now, "I want to take some time off, focus on important things" he said, angling his body towards her, his eyes now catching hers.
She swallowed slowly, her mouth slightly ajar, her lip trembling. He realized then how similar it was to that time at her place, when he told her he loved her than fucked it up. It was similar yet different. He was telling her yet again that she was important to him, that she was different. Last time was at her place at night, with wine glasses. This time was in broad daylight, in a public space, with coffee instead.
But most importantly this time, if given the chance, he was not running away.
"Harvey" she whispered, unsure of what to say.
"Look I know you haven't had time to think about what I said, but about that" he started, as she felt her chest constricting. She feared he was going to take it back, that he was going to crush her again. She wondered if that's how a panic attack would feel, before she heard his words.
"I want you to know that I meant every single word I said" he said, the sincerity in his eyes melting her heart. "And maybe I still can't answer HOW I love you the way you want me to, but I told you I'm in love with you. And I don't think I can have love for anyone in my heart more than I have for you" he confessed, his eyes moving to his hands again.
She left the cup of coffees between her knees, hers hands reaching for his around his cup.
"Harvey, look" she started, but his mind was already racing.
Her tone was apologetic. She didn't want him, she didn't want it, and she didn't want them.
"I promised myself a long time ago not to put myself in situations where I end up hurt – and that meant waiting for you" she started, seeing the sadness in his eyes. "But then you said those things you said to me after you saved me and… everything I had worked for the last twelve years disappeared into thin air" she continued. "Every doubt I ever had about us, every 'Maybe' I ever had was stirred inside of me, and then you shut me out again" she explained.
"Donna I know I will never communicate my feelings the way other guys would, the way Mitchell probably does, and the friend part in me want to tell you not to get involved with me, but I also don't think anyone loves you as much as I do, and the way I do – even if I can't even explain how" he started speaking fast, not noticing the huge grin on her face, leaving his cup of coffee on the ground next to him.
He was fighting for her, he was doing the thing she had always wanted him to do.
"And I'm so sick of watching you fight like hell for everything that happens in here" , she had said pointing to the office, "and nothing that happens in here", she had explained, overwhelmed with emotion, her hands resting on her chest.
"Is this about you?" he had asked her.
She had lied.
"Cut the crap Harvey" she said, his head snapping in surprise at her words. "Stop using that friendship shit with me" she said with honesty. "We never were just friends" she clarified, "and now let me continue" she bossed him around, and he complied, nodding silently.
"You shut me out again and I was done. I was hurt, I felt stupid" she explained, her voice slightly cracking. He wanted to tell her he's the idiot and not her. "But then I watched you evolve" she whispered. "Those five months Harvey, you've turned into what I always saw in you. And I tried to fight it, tried to tell myself that you weren't going to hurt me again" she continued, "until last night. Never in a million years would I have believed that you would do what you did. And what you said, I know how hard it was for you to say it"
"What are you saying?" he asked, his eyes looking frantically for hers.
"I'm saying that I want this. I want to try. But I want you to promise me something. I want you to promise that you'll never shut me out again, that you'll talk to me. That when things get bad, you'll work your way through them. You'd go have a session with Agard…" she explained, before he cut her.
"And make up sex?" he asked.
"Tons of make up sex" she giggled. "Because I've always been in love with you Harvey" she said, enjoying how his thumb drew circles on her skin, "but if you shut me out one more time, I'll break" she admitted so low, sounding so fragile that he wanted to hit himself for hurting her so many times. Her eyes were watery.
"I promise" he whispered, his hands holding hers tightly, his eyes looking deep into hers. "I promise" he repeated, their foreheads resting against each other.
"Kiss me you fool" she murmured, her breath tickling his lips.
"About damn time" he said with a grin, before his lips touched hers.
He kissed her softly, slowly, his hands cupping her face, as hers rested on his forearms. He held her like she was made out of porcelain, and gave attention to every inch of her skin, making her moan into his mouth. She swore she could feel his smile on her lips. She bit on his lower lip, surprising him, before she granted him access to her mouth, making way for his tongue to slip between her teeth. Her arms came up around his neck and he pulled her against him. His hands flattened against her back, and she was leaning into him, kissing him as fiercely as he was kissing her. He clung to her more tightly, knotting his hands in her hair, trying to tell her all the things he could never say out loud.
They pulled away for air, looking at each other, her with rosy cheeks, him with lust in his eyes.
"I've always wanted to do it in the file room" she blurted out with a mischievous smile.
He quirked an eyebrow, thinking of how much he loved that woman, before standing up fast.
"Only if we make a stop on my old desk" he suggested, watching her hands on his phone.
"I texted Ray" she said, following him, while he looked at her with adoration.
"I love you" he said.
"I know" she teased, slipping her fingers between his.
A.N: First of all thanks for reading this, and for all the reviews on the past chapter. I'm sorry it took a while to update, I was lacking inspiration.
The fic COULD end here, or an epilogue could be added where (maybe) the title choice would be explained.
Let me know what you think of this chapter, and on whether I should add that epilogue.
Thanks for sticking around,
Drop a review :)