Sorry it's been a long time since I've updated but I'm really busy.


Derek walked slowly towards the hospital, knowing who was waiting there for him. He didn't know if he really was ready to face them and have dinner with them as if nothing had happened but he felt as if he would have done anything to avoid Meredith right now. He wished he had decided to go home, he could have used the quiet and peace that offered his trailer and his land. But he already was near the hospital and had promised Mark, the same Mark who had…he really should stop thinking about that, he wasn't even mad anymore. He entered into the lobby and once he saw the looks on his former best friend and former wife, all thoughts of hesitation flew away. He was going to have a mere dinner with them but they seemed so happy that he had shown up, he couldn't help feeling happy too. As they were going to head out, he waited for them instead of reaching them. Once they were near him, Mark put a hand on Derek's shoulder.

"I'm happy you came" Mark smiled but when he saw the grim expression of Derek, he asked "What happened to I'm happy?" he frowned and Derek just shrugged. He didn't want to discuss Meredith with his soon to be ex-wife and her ex-lover or whatever he was for her.

"Where are we going?" Derek asked to change subject and hoped he sounded light enough.

"I chose the restaurant, of course my favourite" replied Addison, smiling.

"Okay, let's go then" Derek said and they went out of the lobby, to the parking lot where they decided it would be easier if each one of them took his own car. Derek happily obliged as it would give him some more time to prepare himself and try and forget about Meredith. Before entering into his car, he cast one last look towards Joe's bar, where was the woman he loved but could only blame himself for her loss. At least, she had met someone, she had moved on and a part of him was happy for her, happy she had finally moved on from the damaged he had done to her. She was ready to get a new start and he was going to do his best to respect that.

They arrived at the restaurant and they were escorted to the table Addison had reserved. At the beginning, they stayed in an awkward silence. Mark and Addison were seated near each other and looking at Derek who was in front of Addison and seeming a little less sad than before but still not as cheerful as this morning. The time alone in his car, listening to The Clash had enlightened his mood but unfortunately not enough.

"I talked to the Chief, we're going Friday if it's okay with you" Derek looked at them, it was Wednesday, it gave them two days to prepare themselves.

"Yeah, it's fine, I don't have any important surgery scheduled" replied Mark.

"Friday? We have an appointment with the lawyer" Addison replied looking at Derek, she had said it as if it was just some appointment and not the end of her marriage and she had managed not to look heartbroken.

"I know, it's Friday morning at 8, I don't think it will be long then we'll go to the hospital to check things and we'll fly at night." He answered her and she just nodded. "I was thinking of flying back Monday in the afternoon" he proposed and they accepted.

"Afraid of spending too much time with women?" inquired Mark.

"Not with women, with those women. Who knows what they'll do to me, I haven't called in a long time" replied Derek.

"Your mother must hate us" sighed Addison.

"My mother loves you, don't worry" Derek reassured Addison.

"Should I be worried?" Mark half-joked.

Derek considered scaring him but he just nodded off, he really wasn't in the mood. Their food arrived and they went back into old habits, all tasting each other's food. Going back to that felt good, it was before everything messed up and that sign made them more comfortable with each other. They ate pleasantly, recalling the past and enjoying being together, they were a family. Families have problems but stick together and that was exactly what they were going to do. Addison and Mark had tried again to know what was wrong with Derek but they had understood that he really didn't want to talk about it so they had dropped the subject.

When they had finished their dessert, they had paid the bill and went out of the restaurant promising to do it again soon. They then went back into their respective cars and drove home.

Derek arrived in his trailer and he was so tired that he didn't even change clothes as he collapsed into his bed, soon asleep. As he woke up, the first thing he thought was that it was Thursday, there was one day left before he had to face the whole family but the thought wasn't so scary any more as he had made his peace with what had happened. Plus, he kind of needed some time away from Seattle, or more precisely away from Meredith. Meredith, of course she had haunted his dreams. In them, he had been able to tell her how he felt but he didn't remember the end and maybe it was for the best. Yesterday, he had been joyful all day but had a little breakdown at night but he had been taken by surprise, today, he would be fine, life was too short he kept reminding himself.

He took off his clothes, took a shower, a coffee and was ready for work. He stood in front of Seattle Grace Hospital and seemed unable to move. He wasn't going to repeat what he had done a couple of days ago, was he? He had been feeling good, but the sight of the hospital had reminded him that Meredith also worked here and he would have to face her sooner or later. He had abandoned her yesterday and wasn't ready to talk to her yet. He would end up telling her he loved her or in order to hide his jealousy, he would snap at her and that would be the end of their friendship. If he avoided her, it wouldn't be better so he would stay natural. He took a deep breath and was ready to go in when he heard a voice.

"Dr Shepherd, are you all right?" the voice of Izzie Stevens repeated what she had told me when she had found him like that but this time things were different, he really was okay, just jealous and heartbroken but she didn't need to know that.

"We should stop meeting like that" he smiled at her. The voice he had used had sounder light even to his own hears and didn't betray what he was feeling so she had just smiled back and kept on walking and he hadn't taken him long to enter inside too.

The morning passed as expected, he had a surgery in the morning with Karev, he had checked on Burke and he had seen Meredith but not talked to her yet. He had seen Mark and Addison and they had had lunch together. The afternoon had been rather quiet; he had performed a surgery with Stevens as his intern. It was already rather late and he was now in his office, checking papers before going home when he heard a knock on his door.

"Come in" he replied not really wanting to see anyone but there she was, his Meredith, no, not his any more, just Meredith. She looked at him and entered in his office closing the door behind her and leaning against the door. She was dressed in her street clothes and Derek couldn't help stare, she was beautiful. "You're beautiful" he heard himself say before he could stop himself, he wasn't supposed to say it aloud. Their eyes meet and the distant figure she seemed to put disappeared as she smiled.

"Thank you" she replied, blushing a little bit, "But flattery won't get you anywhere" her smile faded and she was doing what Derek supposed to be an attempt at an angry face.

"Why is that?" he asked her, amused.

"You've been avoiding me" she said calmly but he thought he noticed hurt in her voice.

"No" he refuted and it was almost true, he hadn't just made an effort to spend time with her but it wasn't avoiding.

"I haven't seen you all day"

"I have seen you" he just replied. Of course he had seen her, every time she wasn't paying attention, he had been staring at her.

"Derek" she said and he knew she was getting exasperated because she didn't understand.

"I'm sorry. I have been busy today but I wasn't avoiding you" he looked into her eyes.

"Okay" she seemed unsure but didn't want to push.

She looked at the papers in front of him, he followed her gaze and said "I'm just checking some papers, I'll be absent for a few days days". She looked at him questioningly, he continued "Addison, Mark and I are going to visit my family" he sighed and looked at the floor.

"Derek?" she looked at him concerned, all trace of anger gone and right at this moment, she saw how tired he looked.

"Am I a fool for trusting them again?" he sounded and looked completely lost, that Meredith couldn't help close the distance that was separating them. She sat on the couch next to him and took his hand.

"No, you're doing the right thing, Derek, you told me once that Addison was your family, Mark used to be too." Meredith said in a soothing voice.

"Thank you. I'm sorry for being like that with you. It's just that…" Derek started but was cut off gently by Meredith.

"You don't need to apologize, I know I seem to get angry at you but I'm just hurt and in the end I understand" Meredith reassured him, really understanding him.

"I'm still sorry" he said and she smiled, in that moment, both understood that words were not needed any more. Even if they weren't together, they were there for the other and it was enough.

Then after several seconds of silence which seemed like minutes to them, Derek spoke "I need to finish this", he took back his hands from Meredith and they both instantly felt the need to reach for the other's hand but didn't do anything about it. Derek resumed reading his papers, occasionally signing them or correcting something. After a while he turned back to Meredith who had stayed there, not moving just looking at his moving hands.

"Meredith" he called her and she looked into his eyes but she didn't say anything and it looked like she had no intention. "I can see you've finished for the day" he stated and she nodded still not talking. "You don't want to go home?" he asked hoping she wouldn't believe he wanted her to go but he just didn't understand why she was staying even if he didn't mind, on the contrary, he loved her company.

"Already sick of me?" she joked.

"Never, Mer" he said truthfully and Meredith felt comfort at his words and wished he was telling her that in another circumstances. "But why don't you go home?"

Meredith opened her mouth to say something but closed it, then she opened it again but words wouldn't come out. What was wrong with her? She could talk just minutes ago, concentrate Meredith.

Derek looked at her slightly amused, "You know, I may have many talents but mind reading is not one of them" he chuckled and Meredith smiled.

"I'm supposed to have dinner with Finn." She finally said and he couldn't tell how she felt about it but she didn't sound excited.

"Finn" he repeated, it could only be one person "Your boyfriend" he stated and she nodded. "Then why are you still here?" he asked her, letting aside his jealousy to find out what was wrong with her.

"I don't think I should go. Finn is a really nice guy, he is great but I'm me. I'm dark and twisty, I can do him no good, I ruin everything."

There was no way Derek was letting her think that about her or she would never take advantage of life. "You may be dark and twisty" he conceded "but you're an amazing person, Meredith Grey. You deserve someone nice" he finished and saw in her eyes that she wanted to believe his words and was grateful he said so but she was Meredith and didn't know just how great she was so he wasn't surprised when she refuted.

"I don't do nice. See what happened last time with George"

"It isn't the same thing, Mer. If he is worth it, you should give him a chance" he said surprised at how honest he sounded, a part of him believed that, he wasn't just ready to lose her but it'd be fine once she'd be happy, at least he hoped so. Because now he couldn't imagine feeling any better about it.

"You think I should go?" she asked sounding childish even to her own ears.

"Do you like him?" he asked not really knowing what answer he was expecting. The thought of her liking another man was just unbearable and was physically painful.

"Yes" she replied, not needing a moment to think.

"Then definitely, yes, you should go." He told her with a smile, not caring about the pain he was feeling while uttering those words.

Meredith hugged him and he was taken by surprise, "Thank you, Derek. You were right, you're a great friend" she smiled at him.

"I'm always right" he chuckled.

"Crap. I'm late." She said, but didn't make a move to get up.

"You're making him wait on purpose, aren't you?" Derek decided to joke about the situation so maybe it would hurt less. "Playing hard to get, I see"

Meredith playfully hit him in the stomach "Shut up" she kissed him on the cheek "I'll see you tomorrow and don't avoid me, okay?" He nodded but she still seemed unsure "You promise?"

"I promise" he replied and watched her go out of his office smiling to go to her date with another man. He wished he had had more time with her, time to please her, to take care of her by showing him how much she was important to him. His hand rested for a long moment on the cheek where her lips had just been. He was sure the feeling of her soft lips against his skin would haunt him tonight. He resumed taking care of his papers but his mind wasn't in it any more, he would have time to finish that tomorrow, he needed to get home and have a good night sleep. He let everything on his table as it was and decided to go home.

In his car, while wondering what he was going to do tomorrow, he realised that today he hadn't even thought one second that tomorrow morning, he was divorcing his wife of eleven years. Surprisingly he felt rather calm about it and it felt good because it showed that it was time, he had finally let go of the past, the regret, the bitterness. He arrived at his trailer, took a shower and immediately went to bed, too tired to even eat.

His internal clock woke him up at 6 am. He turned into bed trying to get back to sleep but he couldn't so he got up. He took his time to take a relaxing shower, then dressed and poured himself some cereals. He was a little bit anxious but he was okay, the past was going to be left behind and he was starting something new even if it was with elements from the past, he could do it, he was fine.

He took his car and headed to the lawyer's and arrived just in time. Addison was already in there waiting for him with the lawyer and he couldn't exactly tell what she was feeling but she didn't look like she was okay. He walked towards them and shook the lawyer's hand with a small smile then he turned to Addison who still hadn't met his eyes.

"Good Morning, Addie" He tried and she finally turned towards him offering him a small smile and a nod but still not speaking. "Are you okay?" he touched her shoulder and she shivered at his touch but he didn't move his hand.

"Yes, I'm okay" she replied speaking quietly.

"Okay" he said uncertainly removing his hand then he sat in front of her.

"So neither of you brought your assets into the marriage" stated the lawyer, he continued as they didn't object "Aside from Addison's trust fund which will remain in her name, we'll spilt everything, stocks, bonds down the middle. The only thing that gets complicated is the real estate."

"Well let me make this simple. I'd like to keep my trailer and the land in Seattle." he addressed both of them. "You can take the rest" he looked at Addison.

"What? What are you up to, Derek?" Addison asked astonished, she sure hadn't expected that.

"I don't want them Addie, take them and do whatever you want with them, keep them, sell them, it's your choice"

"But I…the divorce is my fault. We're splitting everything Derek" she told him determined

"No and we already agreed that we were both responsible." Derek reminded her.

"I don't understand"

"You cheated on me twice" Derek said with no accusation "but I barely paid attention to you for years, we can say we're even. Plus, my life is in Seattle, I won't go back to New York" He then turned to look at the lawyer "Make the change and I'll sign today" Derek finished, getting up ready to leave.

"I won't sign if you make those changes" Addison exclaimed.

"Why? I don't want them, I want you to have them. Why don't you understand that?" he asked her, confused at her behaviour.

"Because, I don't deserve it" Addison answered not meeting his eyes.

"You do. I'll see you at the hospital" and he was going to walk away but changed his mind. "Addison, I've forgiven you and I mean it. You're an amazing woman, you made mistakes, I made mistakes but still you're the same woman I fell in love with. I don't regret our marriage, I'm holding onto the memories, good ones as bad ones. You don't need to feel guilty anymore." He kissed her on the cheek "I'll see you later".

Addison took some time to collect herself then she too went to the hospital. While driving, she wondered why she wouldn't just tell him, the sooner, the better. Maybe if she didn't tell him, he would never know so it wouldn't hurt him. She was completely lost and plus there was Mark always reminding her she needed to do it. She decided that she would do it today, no matter what, today she was going to finally tell him the truth. But she wished they could just stay like that, he had forgiven her, they were finally okay and everything was going to change again.

Derek had no surgery to do today, he just had to do his paperwork and make sure everything was okay and would be okay before he left. He had promised Meredith he would not avoid her and that was a slightly difficult promise to keep. Before, he would have looked for her and pretend it was just a coincidence but right now he wondered if he really wanted to see her, feeling happy after her date. He didn't even want to know how it had ended and wanted to forget she had had a date. But she was his friend and he had promised her something and even if it was nothing, it'd show her that she could count on him. He walked to the elevator and took a mental note to see her at least once this morning. When the doors opened, he knew there was a reason why he loved elevators. There she was, unfortunately not alone but still she was there and at the sight of him, a smile appeared on her lips and he suddenly felt more relaxed and smiled back. He didn't care who was looking at them or that there were other people, in that moment, it was just the two of them, nothing else mattered. He entered into the elevator and stopped in front of her. He fought his urge to kiss her and instead he leant to her and kiss her on the cheek before taking his place next to her with their shoulders slightly touching.

"Hi" Meredith said, happy he now felt comfortable again around her.

"Hi" he replied not turning to look at her. They were both looking in front of them, seeing how low the elevator was moving and were both grateful. "I'm keeping my promise" he informed her.

"That's good. Really good in fact because I want to talk to you" she turned to look at him.

He also turned to look at her and asked worried "Something's wrong?"

"No" she replied, touched by his concern, "I just want to ask you something"

"The answer is yes" smiled Derek.

"You don't even know what it is about" Meredith giggled.

"I never say no to hot sex in my office" Derek replied with a suggestive tone.

"What? No!" Meredith exclaimed and as some people in the elevator had turned to look at them, she blushed "Are you crazy? You're an ass."

"You know where to find me" he smiled ignoring her and stepping out of the elevator as the doors opened. Meredith just sighed but couldn't help smiling, she liked that Derek, her Derek.

Derek walked into his office and sat on the couch, ready to finish what he had begun the day before. There were not many papers left so it wouldn't take more than the morning. He had nearly finished when a beep was heard, it was Addison who wanted to have lunch with him. He hadn't even seen the time passed. He felt a little sad he hadn't seen Meredith again and wondered what she wanted to ask him. That's what he was thinking while he made his way to the cafeteria. He wasn't really hungry so he hadn't taken much, he put his tray on the table where Addison already was waiting for him. He smiled at her but she didn't smile back, instead she looked sad.

"What's wrong?" he asked her taking her hand in his. He couldn't really understand his behaviour, he had spent three months treating her like shit and now he couldn't bear seeing her sad.

"I have something to tell you" she said calmly while removing his hand from hers, Derek nodded uncertain "I wish I…" she started but then stopped.

"Addie, talk to me. What's wrong?" he asked in a gentle voice, so gentle that Addison felt even worse.

"Mark wasn't a one night stand. We were together for two months. So please take the Brownstone." Addison said while looking into his eyes and recognised what she had seen the past months, as he processed the words she was uttering.

By the end of her speech, Derek's eyes had shown so many emotion, she couldn't read them all : disgust, hatred, pain… His eyes were now red and she didn't know if it was because of the pain or the rage but she would have bet on the latter. She stayed calm and waited for him to do something, anything.

"So please take the brownstone?" he repeated in an angry voice. "So please take the brownstone?" this time he shouted it while getting up and pounding his fist onto the table, an action which didn't go unnoticed by the people around who were now openly looking at them, enjoying the show but Derek and Addison didn't seem to realise. Derek tried to calm down as he fought the urge to walk away, he had decided to change and faced his problems so he sat down.

"Another secret you need to share?" Derek asked her bitterly.

"I'm sorry, Derek, I should have told you sooner but…" her voice trailed off.

"But? You knew I wouldn't have taken you back. Why did you do that, Addison?" he asked in a broken voice.

Addison really saw for the first time just how broken he was. Unfortunately she didn't have an answer for him. All she could think about was that she had wanted him back and now she couldn't regret it more.

"Is that payback? The day you cheated on me, you took everything from me, wasn't that enough? I lost my wife, my best friend, my job, my houses, my cars… everything, even my own family"

He saw her surprised look at the mention of the fact that he had lost his family and he felt tears threatening to fall so he closed his eyes for a brief moment and when he opened them again he continued "Yeah, my own family. Do you know how hard it is when people you trust so much stab you in the back?" He felt Addison's discomfort and regret and enjoyed it, right now she deserved to suffer just as much as she had made him suffer.

"I called them" he recalled getting lost in thoughts "I told them I was going to move but what did they say? Addison made a mistake, so what? Everyone make mistakes and you're not perfect, you didn't take care of her. Okay, I was a bad husband but having sex with my best friend, isn't that a little harsh?"

He made a pause ad if he was waiting for an answer but he kept on, feeling the need to talk, to let go of all that bitterness "Oh come on, Derek, don't be bitter, he is Mark. Everyone has sex with Mark, it's practically a right of passage. What does that mean? My wive doesn't have sex with my fucking best friend. Is that so hard to understand?" he looked at Addison, his pain reflecting in his unshed tears.

Addison justified herself even if she thought there was no excuse for what she had done, she had to tell him that she hadn't done that on purpose to hurt him. But first she had to be sincere, he had to know all the facts. "I was in love with him. Or at least I thought I was. After you left, we lived together for two months. I wanted to believe that we could make it work. I wanted to believe I hadn't thrown my marriage away, that I hadn't thrown my life away on a fling. But he's Mark and well... I caught him with someone else. And then Richard called."

"Did I deserve that?" Derek asked when he had digested her words, waiting for an honest answer. "Why didn't you let go of our pathetic excuse for a marriage?"

"I wanted to believe that there was still a chance. I wanted to have you back and I was ready to make lots of sacrifices for that."

"You knew I wouldn't have divorced you. But if you had told me that, I would have"

"I know" Addison simply replied.

Derek got up "You can take the houses, the money, I don't care. All I want is Seattle. I was happy here before. And both of you can go straight to Hell" He finished clearly indicating her that they were not welcome to visit his family anymore. He stormed out of the cafeteria, ignoring all the glances and the whispers, he needed to be alone in his office.

Cristina had heard the argument and she didn't understand what kind of sick feeling took her. She didn't care that he felt bad, they weren't friends or anything but still there was something bugging her and that didn't permit a good day so she did what she thought would make her day better. She spotted Meredith and called her.

"Yeah" Meredith answered, rejoining her.

"Your stupid McDreamy had another fight with Satan"

"Is he alright? Where is he? What happened?"

"Calm down. I don't know if he's alright, not that I care anyway. I don't know where he is, he was really mad, it was kind of hot actually" Cristina smiled.

"Cristina!" Meredith exclaimed but then she smirked "You like him"

"The man is an ass, I cant bear him."

"Whatever. Thanks, I'm going to find him" Meredith hoped he would be in his office as she thought.


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