I break down, fear is sinking in

The cold comes, racing through my skin

Searching for a way to get to you

The lazy touch of orange streak of light warmed his skin and he let his eyes slowly pan over the dark room.

It was warm but his body shivered.

Sun kept its slow walk around the dark room that even got darker as the light laid lower, and lower.

Soon he was engulfed in the darkness and only the silver peaking through the sliver between curtains that didn't touch…

Just like his reality refused to touch with the brilliant mind underneath the surface. The visible invisible etched to the roots of the darkness that had become home to all the fear and intrusive thoughts he tried to keep as far as the ocean out his window.

The gentle rustle of a breath of a wind that broke through the barriers of the hatred, pain and all the years of fighting. His hand trembled against its subtle motions yet ignored for the winds to play and entwine his fingers. A sliver opened in the breeze and a silver light cautiously touched the lone figure of a young man sitting so stiffly on the edge of the bed that had seen more pleasant days at some point.

Searching for a way to get to you

Through the storm you…

Strangely he never even blinked let alone flinched at the sudden spark of electricity slashed at the sky and chased the elusive moonlight behind a curtain of black clouds ready to swallow the city in its outrage.

He didn't notice as the lashing electric darts tried to lure him out of his misery and self-loathing well.

He didn't hear the raging sky screaming at the top of its lungs at him…

He only saw the orange flames of the sunset and how his skin hugged the grains of the soft beach sand…

He only heard the intricate twirls of the birdsong all around him…

And that was all he ever wanted to see and hear, and feel…

Go, giving up your home

Go, leaving all you've known

You are not alone

It's been the longest of times since he'd last walked the way to the cemetery but it still was the one he hoped to not walk himself, not as soon as it might happen.

No, Alexx forbade such thoughts but his mind was so frazzled they'd just come and invade his thoughts like a bubonic plague centuries ago had ravaged the world.

He felt unable to drop them as they kept enslaving his mind…

H had allowed him to take a day off before he had to face the Lab. It would take so much more than just a courage to walk up those stairs and take that elevator ride. He already felt trapped in that metal box as if there would never be a way out.

He may have fear of heights but this time all he wanted was to stand up on that rooftop and join the birds passing by, he longed the escape from this.

He used to suffer from claustrophobia back in Boston where he grew up with his uncle taking him to boat rides and he'd tried to drown few times in his teens after being bullied. He still couldn't do anything else than just look down at the city and imagine being able to fly away from all his problems.

He felt raindrops on his face and belatedly he realized it was not the rain, those were the tears he allowed to fall.

His pain and loss was the same as the his coworkers pain and loss but they still didn't know why it always was so much more painful to him, why he took that so personally…

Why he never let anyone to that locker and kept the one with broken door next to it, that his own anger and pain permanently left its doors barely hanging and the lock just a mere decoration.

They also didn't know why all of a sudden he was always found on the Lab's rooftop. They kept guessing and tried to poke but Ryan Wolfe was a man of a depth only Horatio ever understood.

With arms up stretched into the sky

With eyes like echoes in the night

It was in his file since before but the redhead never fully looked at it past the basic details. It was probably Frank that did it before even his own Sergeant knew his name.

And the older Detective shook Ryan's hand and nodded his head and left it there. Such a subtle, quiet respect for one man's fallen spouse and other's fallen friend.

H only realised it after he had to take his file and actually look through it in depth before he could rush to any judgments whatsoever. And he also was the one that had to visit Ryan's new favourite thinking spot.

When it had started couple years back it was just a mere nod to the possibilities Ryan prayed every night to never encounter, yet he wanted to burn every sight into his mind so when the inevitable comes he has something to cry himself to sleep with.

Fear was a thing he'd lived with for may years before he jumped to a hope for something possibly less dangerous. He walked every night and day out of his home and prayed to whatever was the deity hanging on that neck chain Tim gave him for this birthday that same year they realised life was too short to just waste it.

He gave Tim one of his own for his birthday after that so they both knew that part of each other would always be there with them whenever they went.


Ryan's luck had run out before Tim's…

The following night Tim had left a slip on a desk at the Lab for possibly finding a spot at either night or day shift. He didn't find out about it until the day he received a nail in his eye that started all this downfall.

Eric told him in the car, as he took him home, part as an apology, that he'd seen the note and read it and it still lives in his locker. Back then he was just a bit weirded out by Tim suddenly playing mysterious and leaving secret notes at the Lab.

That day something between them went repaired and forged anew…

Hiding from the hell that you've been through

Silent one, you…

He wore both chains around his neck but left them at his locker or took in his kit, whichever felt safest.

Sometimes he'd taken them in his deepest and most protected pocket so that there would be nothing that could become dangerous out there.

And he left them both home when his gambling addiction took the strongest hold he's ever been in. Being fired only opened the oldest wounds in his book and freshly poured new layers of salt that burned through his body like the fire of his own anger at himself for letting it develop without asking for help.

That night he took three bottles and dried them all out to the last drop and went to walk by the ocean…

And when the sun came to kiss his face he realized his body had been traveling while he was at sleep.

Alexx wasn't happy but she reminded of all of the people he still had in his life and that he never should keep such secrets from the ones that had taken him in as their family.

He promised to do better…

He failed a lot of attempts after that but eventually he knew that nothing would ever feel as home as the Lab.

And when accidentally walking off his trails didn't bring anything more than a disappointment in himself he picked the Twelve-Step program and a sponsor.

And somehow he sensed Tim's approval so he kept doing that until things felt close to what once had been…

It was just like that, Eric got shot and they had to pick up the Lab's work. He refused to go home and often it ended with a compromise of sleeping at the Lab until he could see straight again.

The only thing that didn't change was his ability to see straight.

He felt like the sand started to swallow his body willing him to sink all the way through to where Tim's body laid under the layers of grief.

So one morning he'd crashed his car on the side of a highway. Horatio unexpectedly had been close by and the moment he'd heard the radio Ryan felt a hand gently warming up his own frozen one.

The news had been coming for years and only his latest fallout led to a road that offered it a shortcut.

His brain had frozen after that and maybe that shock finally reached him as fully as they say.

Scans and tests galore later he was given only one option that he needed to jump on as quickly as possible, so he just sat there numbly as a block of ice and tried to keep the panic attack and convulsions away a bit longer so he could struggle alone.

Go, giving up your home

Go, leaving all you've known

You go, giving up your home

Go, leaving all you've known

You are not alone

As days went by and his mind started to accept the new future and his reactions laid off of their vice grip on him he realized he hadn't been so alone as he thought.

First he felt that there was a warm spot on his otherwise ice cold hand and that he could tell someone was breathing ever so slightly, as if they feared anything more would tear into a void and they'd get swallowed by darkness.

Then he realized the presence felt calming and assuring.

Had he not felt that he was not alone and if he'd not taken notice of the way the touch grounded him from exploding into a ball of fire the realisation that there were bandages on his eyes and that the slight itch was a dead giveaway he'd actually be jumping out of that window thinking he's still sitting on that beach and soaking in the fading rays of sunlight with seagulls screaming about their fish and the sand between the crevices of his hands weren't just a memory he'd burned into his mind.

He may be blind for now with all the protection but then he had Eric requesting a bed next to his and never in his life he'd ever imagined that the man who at first hated his guts would ever become his closest friend. How many long years it'd taken, how many apologies they'd passed between them and their shared little family.

Ryan felt the both neck chains stallion the nightstand beside the bed and he smiled.

Maybe all his fears came from the mere fact he'd allowed himself to walk alone for so long and live his life on the sharpest edge for most of the time.

In the following two weeks he came to understand that what he'd always been afraid the most wasn't the people that surrounded him but the darkness he'd allowed himself to drown…

Finally he felt free of that void that had been eating him so feverishly for years that it was almost like a hot air balloon that lifts high the sky to watch that one last sunshine before rain…

He wasn't alone. Not anymore. Not ever again…

You go, giving up your home

Go, you are not unknown

You are not alone

You are not unknown

You are not alone