When Skye came back out, she headed straight for the other room. Connor looked up. He gave her a few minutes, but when she didn't come back he stood up to follow.
Even though she hadn't closed the door, he knocked.
Even though there was no answer, he entered.
Skye sat on her bed, now free of make-up and dressed in her own clothes, along with his jacket. A towel was slung around her shoulders to keep her damp hair in check.
"Can I come in?"
Connor walked up to the bed and sat down on the floor in front of her. "You okay?"
Skye nodded. "Do you need this back?" she asked quietly, and tugged on the jacket's sleeve.
"Keep it," Connor said. He stayed close, but took care not to touch her. "Do you need anything?"
Skye shook her head.
"I made tea."
Skye shook her head.
"Okay. Should I go?"
Skye hesitated, then nodded.
"That's okay," Connor smiled slightly. "If there's anything – you know." He stood up and went to leave. He stopped at the door. "I'll leave it open, all right?"
Skye nodded. "Thank you."
"Leave her alone," Connor said, when he saw Casey approach the door. He and Megan had gotten back a while ago, and they had successfully ignored each other until now.
"I was just gonna see how she's doing."
"I said leave her alone." Connor's tone got fierce.
"Boys," Laurie said warningly, but for the first time she was ignored.
Jake turned fully towards him. "How come you have anything to say in this?"
"Because anyone with common sense would understand that all men are bastards right now?"
"So I can't ask her how she's doing because I'm a man?"
"Among other things."
Connor made the effort to sound reasonable. "I just want you to give her some time, okay? You don't know her like I do. She needs to work things out with herself before she talks about it."
"It's not my fault that I'm a guy."
"And it isn't Skye's fault that things got out of hand like this."
"I already beat up one guy who got too close to her today, I can do with another," Connor warned.
Megan stood up from the sofa where she had been writing the first draft of the mission report.
"You can't just decide to leave her alone with something like this." Casey was about to open the door when an unexpected force got hold of him and pushed him into the wall.
Connor held him in place by putting his arm over Casey's throat and pinning his shoulder against the smooth wall. "You leave her alone," he pronounced very clearly, his voice strangely calm against Casey's laboured breathing. "Do I make myself clear?"
Casey managed a nod.
"Good," Connor said and let himself be pushed away. He remained standing between Casey and the door to Skye's room, unfazed by the other agent's attempt to stare him down.
Then, Casey turned around and left their base.
Megan was still standing. Connor couldn't avoid her glance, but then she just nodded and got hold of the computer again.
Connor looked up when Skye entered the main room. "Hey there," he said.
"Hi." She looked pale and sleepy, and also small, which might have been due to his jacket that went halfway down her thighs. "Just thirsty," she explained her presence.
A minute later she sat down next to her friend on the sofa, a glass of water in her hands.
"Do you feel better?" he asked. Part of him wanted to hug her, especially when his eyes found the little bruises on the side of her neck, but he wasn't sure if that was okay, so he refrained.
"Yeah," Skye said vaguely, and pulled her legs up on the sofa to sit cross-legged. She took a sip of water. "Where's Casey?"
"He's still out, sorting Hillinger," Connor replied. "Megan went to sleep a while ago, but she said to tell you you can wake her if you need her."
Skye nodded, and for a while they sat in silence together.
"I heard you shouting," Skye then said quietly.
Nothing accusing was detectable in her tone, still Connor felt bad for lying. "I thought... I'm sorry," he said guiltily.
"No, actually. Thanks," she said, and smiled faintly. "Bit drastic maybe. But I really didn't want to see him."
They made eye-contact and Connor nodded.
Skye put the glass away. "I should be the one saying sorry," she continued. Connor looked confused. "For being mad at you," she elaborated. "But I was so annoyed that you just assumed things without even asking me."
Connor raised his eyebrows. "Assumed?"
"There's nothing going on between Jake and me."
She could tell that took Connor by surprise. "And Miami?"
"That was one time. And yes, it was kind of nice. But that's all."
Connor leaned back, and Skye couldn't tell if it was relief or frustration in his laugh. "Oh man. And your date?"
"He took me out for dinner, but that was so weird that I told him off. I think I hurt his ego a bit, but later he apologised and ever since it's fine between us."
Connor swallowed, suddenly unable to articulate what he wanted to say. "Sounds like he needs a better wingman."
Skye got the message anyway. "They can't all be as lucky as we are in that regard."
"Yeah," he said awkwardly.
"So there's no need to be an idiot about it," she smiled.
He smiled back. "I just thought – never mind. We're all good, you and me, right?"
"Of course." Then she suddenly sounded unsure again. "Could you have a look at my back? I think I'm hurt, it feels pretty weird."
Skye turned a bit and lifted the jacket. There was a red patch of skin on her lower back. "I'm not sure where exactly."
"I see it all right. It's red. One second." Connor crossed the room to get some cream from their supplies. "What happened?"
Her voice got quieter and defensive. "Hillinger set the dress on fire when it didn't go fast enough."
"Fucking asshole," Connor cursed nonchalantly.
Skye forced a chuckle. "Yeah."
"I'm gonna go back there and kill him right now."
"I think you messed him up enough."
"You sure about that?" He sat down and held the jacket in place before applying cream. "Careful, this might sting a bit. But it's not that big, it's gonna be fine."
"Thank you," she said when he let go again, and huddled the jacket back around her. "I really owe you one for today."
"I already got to beat up a sick son of a bitch, we're even."
"I'm serious," she said.
"Just wish I would have been there sooner," Connor murmured, and wanted to apologise again.
But Skye shook her head. "You were just in time."
She nodded, even smiled a bit.
"No. He wouldn't have fussed much longer, but then you were there. So thank you. Lots."
Connor felt relieved, and even more so when she leaned forward to hug him. Skye was probably the only person in the world he never felt weird hugging. He carefully stroked her shoulder. "Any time," he said.
"I know." They let go of each other. "You know we're like level five friends now? You held my hair while I was throwing up. That's international code for eternal friendship."
Connor mirrored her grin. "Are you trying to tell me you've only seen us as level four friends until now?" He mimed hurt.
"I guess that depends on your personal scale."
"We should establish one, to avoid hurting my feelings."
Skye laughed. "I'll get a piece of paper, and we can work it out. And do we have something to eat? Because I'm starving."
"Way ahead of you. I ordered food to the pharmacy downstairs earlier."
"Let me guess. Pizza." Connor had never been known to order anything other than his favourite food, and he had an incredible talent for shutting down any discussion about what to eat by diverting it to pizza.
"Actually..." Connor produced a plastic bag, put it on the counter-top and unearthed small square take-out boxes. "I got you spring rolls. And one of those veggie noodle things. I hope it's good." He took in her disbelief. "Would you have wanted pizza?"
Skye laughed. "No, this is... good. This is good." She kept smiling.
Connor pushed the food towards her. "Now. Tell me more about this so-called date. I need to know everything."