A/N: Back to watching reruns. I think I LOVE this series a little more every time I watch it. As always D&L shipping. This one is taken from the last episode of season 1. Just an add on of what COULD have happened… *wink*
Dean Gallagher sat with his brother, Chase, and Vince Marchello at The Ambassador Club. Vince had become a gold class member with two free tickets and since Lara had gone off on her 'honeymoon' with Hamish, he was stuck here with a free lap dance he scored off the 'buy one get one free' card that Vince had given him because he felt sorry for him. Frankly, Dean didn't deserve their pity. He was still kicking himself for the comment he had made to Lara that same morning.
"Don't marry Hamish… he's too good for you."
Either his brain had flipped the words around and he meant that she was too good for him, or more than likely it was his heart's way of trying to protect himself against rejection. He had been denied by women too many times to count, and it usually stung his ego a little, but he knew that if Lara rejected him, it wasn't going to be a sting it was going to crush him like a ten-ton truck.
Dean could feel the alcohol make its way to his brain cells and he felt that fogginess that came with being drunk. Somewhere in a posh hotel surrounded by the water, Lara was wrapped in Hamish's arms, possibly talking about a quiet beach wedding. When she came back with a ring on her finger, she was really off-limits and he knew he would regret that every day for the rest of his life.
But what if-
"Dean!" his brother snapped, breaking through his thoughts. "You're missing out on that!"
Chase gestured to the woman who was half-naked and trying to capture his attention. It just wasn't happening and Dean wasn't interested in some random dancer. He doubted there was any woman in the world that could satisfy his desire right now – nobody but her. Lara Knight - partner and best friend.
"Listen, if you're not interested, I'd be happy to step in for you."
Usually Dean would tell him to go to hell. He was the older brother, but he was also the brother who got all the chicks. Chase was always too nervous or too inexperienced, making it near impossible for him to score a gorgeous woman. But right now, he didn't care about sibling rivalry, he cared about Lara.
"Actually, I gotta do something." He stood up, forcing the dancer to step away from him. "Be my guest. I'll see you tomorrow. Thanks, Vince."
Vince nodded. "Tell Lara I said hi."
Dean rolled his eyes. Was he really THAT obvious?
He found a quiet place outside The Ambassador Club and made some calls (pretending it was an emergency) before tracking down her hotel number. He started pacing the pavement, one part of him wishing she wasn't going to answer and another part wishing she did, and then there was an even bigger part of him that begged whoever had the most power of this situation, that it would work in his favour.
Finally, her soft angelic voice came on the line. "Hello?"
"Don't marry Hamish," he pleaded.
"Dean?! What the- why are you calling?!" The harshness of her tone told him that she wasn't interested in hearing this again.
"I was wrong before. He isn't too good for you. You're too good for him. You deserve someone who gets you, Lara. Who understands your impulses and crazy obsession with work? You deserve someone who will love you with as much passion as you have for the job."
"And who is that someone?" she challenged.
He forced the words out. "Me."
There was a long silence.
"Why didn't you say this today?"
She wasn't hanging up on him, that was a good sign, wasn't it? "I don't really know how to talk about this stuff," he admitted. Dean wasn't a 'feelings' kind of guy.
Lara scoffed. "You sleep with a different woman every night. How do you get their attention? 'Hey beautiful, wanna come up to my room?'?"
You're not far off. "That's different," he stated. "They don't matter."
"And I matter?"
He lowered his voice. "Yes."
There was another long pause.
"Lara, are you there?"
"Are you gonna marry him?"
"Dean… how can I trust that you really want this? I mean, I could call off my engagement and come home and a week later you realise that I'm not what you thought I was, and you could bolt."
"I won't bolt," he promised. Was she considering it? "And I know you. I know enough about you to know that I want you. I've wanted you forever. I won't bolt."
"Will you put in a spa?"
Dean grinned. For the first time in his life, the idea of moving in with someone wasn't as scary as he imagined. It was exciting. He wanted to wake up to the same face every morning. "I'll put in a private pool if that's what you want, and a gazebo and- the whole works. Anything. Is that a yes?"
Dean let out a loud whoop.
Lara laughed through the phone. "Did you just whoop?"
He pulled himself together. "No," he denied.
"Just get home, will ya?"
"First flight out," she promised.
Lara couldn't believe the conversation she had just had with Dean Gallagher. He had made a very bold move in telling her how he felt. He was the kind of man that kept his feelings to himself, so she knew this was a big thing for him and the fact that she had been the one to witness this just made her feel even more confident that she was making the right decision.
She began to pack her suitcase.
"Who was the on the phone?" Hamish asked appearing in the doorway.
"Dean," she stated.
His face immediately hardened. "We're on our honeymoon, Lara. This isn't about HIM! It's about us!" he snapped. "What could he possibly want from you right now?"
Lara took a deep breath. It was now or never. "Me," she admitted.
Hamish closed his mouth.
"I'm sorry, Hamish. I- I love you. I do."
"But you love him more?" he spat.
Tears gathered in her eyes. The last thing she wanted to do was hurt him. Hamish was a good man with a few flaws just like everyone else in the world. But he didn't get her the way that Dean did, and she couldn't talk to him about everything the way that she could with Dean. And no matter how much time passed, she knew that despite his desire for children, she didn't want his.
"Hamish, I'm sorry."
"So he clicks his fingers and you go running, huh?"
"Isn't it better in the long run to cut ties now instead of wasting your life married to someone who doesn't want the same things that you do." Lara through the last of her clothes into the suitcase and zipped it up.
Hamish shook his head. "Don't even try to pretend that this is about doing what's best for me. It's a cop-out, Lara. You just want to make yourself feel better about bailing on us for him."
Lara nodded. "Ok. I'm sorry," she said quietly. He was right. It was exactly what she was doing. If she could make him see that this wasn't all bad, then maybe the guilt she was feeling would go away.
"So you're leaving just like that?"
Dragging the suitcase off the bed, Lara walked across the room to where he stood, kissed him gently on the cheek. "Goodbye Hamish." And then she walked out of his life.
Dean's nerves were shot.
"Hey, Dean-o!" Vince called, causing him to spill hot coffee down his shirt.
He groaned as the hot liquid seeped through the material of his RESCUE uniform. He set the mug down on the sink and vigorously wiped at the soon-to-be stain forming on his clothes. "Damn it," he muttered.
"What's the matter with you? You've been edgy for days."
"I'm fine." They'd all know soon enough.
"I need you to take one for the team," the boss stated. "There's a pile up. We need all hands on deck."
Dean looked at his watch. Lara's flight should be getting in in less than an hour. He had triple checked the flights. He wanted to be here when she came back. It was why he had swapped places with Chase. "I kind of have something to do," he said vaguely.
Vince gave him the look.
Dean rolled his eyes, relenting. "Yeah, alright."
"Good on you, Dean-o!" Vince said slapping him on the back.
Dean let the water roll off his back. It had been an exhausting day. The pile-up had involved six cars. Four people had died at the scene (a two-year-old included), six people were seriously injured and the other nine had walked away with a few bumps and bruises.
"Dean…" a voice called. HER voice. He'd know it anywhere.
Dean poked his head over the shower screen.
"Hey," she said with that beautiful sweet made-his-heart-ache smile.
"Hey," he smiled back. "How long you been back?
"A while. It seems that some things don't change around here."
"Some do," he said.
The blush in Lara's cheek's reddened, making her look more beautiful than she usually did. "Yeah. That shower warm?"
"Step in and find out," he taunted.
Lara, who was usually quick to throw back an insult or rejection, hesitated. "Someone could come in…"
Was she considering it? "Ah, we work in dangerous situations all the time. It's what you live for, isn't it?"
Dean pushed open the shower screen just slightly, inviting her to come in. Perhaps he was moving too fast, perhaps he would even screw this up, but he was standing under a warm shower with a woman he had wanted since day one and she was contemplating sharing the water with him, he would be an idiot to turn her away.
Lara looked over her shoulder, listened and then slowly peeled off her tee shirt and wriggled out of her pants before stepping into the cubicle with him. Dean's heart began to hammer in his chest. Surely, this was a dream. These kinds of dreams always started with one of them being naked. Lara pressed her hands up against his chest and the heat of her palm instantly burnt his skin. She tilted her head up, inviting him to connect their mouths.
"Lara, I…" he didn't know what to say. His hand slipped around her waist and drew her closer.
"Time is passing by, Dean. There is plenty on time for talking later. I'm not going anywhere."
That's all Dean needed to hear. He swiftly pressed her up against the tiled wall and kissed her with every passed pent-up moment of passion that had ever entered his body. She moaned in response, sending chills up his spine as her tongue ran the length of his mouth.
God, she was delicious.
He had her in his arms. Her. Lara Knight - partner and best friend. No doubt that this moment was going to change his life, but he was not afraid, not this time.
OH! I LOVE this show! I would do just about anything to bring this show back with all the original characters. I would love to see what happened after… and I always thought that Vince and Michelle had a good connection. I reckon if the show progressed, it would have steered in that direction… you agree? DUMB people taking away AWESOME shows. *groans*
I would love a review if you feel it was worth it. Good or bad are welcome.