A/N: Hi! Yes, I have been away from this for a long time. Really sorry about that; the next chapter after this shouldn't be too long coming. Enjoy!
"I don't like them," was the first thing Nate said to Joss after his introduction to the Twins. "That Connor guy, is such a…"
"A tool?" The answer to her question was a smirk. "Yeah, he's a piece of work for sure. But I think…I uh...I think that they can help us. This is what we want right? To rid our selves of the wolf, forever?"
He didn't answer, but she took that as answer enough. Nate wasn't exactly being very supportive. First he had scoffed at her idea to measure serotonin levels, stating that as the only actual medical professional in the room he had not volunteered to do so, conveniently forgetting that, just because she wasn't licensed, Joss was perfectly capable of doing the tests herself. Of course it hadn't helped when Connor had tried to be charismatic.
"I share your frustrations Nate, but what Joss needs is our patience," he'd said; his tone grated on Joss and she could tell right away that had been the wrong thing to say to Nate.
"I'm sorry, I met you all of three minutes ago," he'd sniped at Connor, before he'd turned to Joss. "Your trying to put an end to centuries old curse with a video camera you snagged from your 12-year-old neighbours garage sale and some seed money originally ear marked for an exotic dancer! You are a werewolf Joss. We are werewolves. Don't kid yourself." His tone had been exasperated and his eyes hard. Which had hurt, because wasn't he supposed to support her, not tell her she was crazy for trying to do this? She was doing it for them! At least he hadn't left in a huff, so they could try and talk about it now.
"We need to try Nate," she ventured, stepping over to where he was standing by the entrance to the storage unit. "For the little alien headed thing growing inside me, if no one else." She looked up at him, making her eyes bigger. Yes, Sally had taught her that look one night while Aidan was working and they decided to watch some chick flicks (Ryan Reynolds might have been in one, that guy was everywhere.) And yes, she had tried it a few times on Nate to varying degrees of success. This time he took her hands in his and squeezed them.
"I just don't want them to take advantage of you Doe Eyes. Get your hopes up and then let you down when it doesn't work."
Joss sighed; she knew they weren't going to agree on this. She didn't particularly like Brin and Connor (more so Connor, the creep), but she was on a time line here. Lately, since the ultra sound actually, all she could think about was her baby. True, she wasn't crazy about the idea of being a mother, but that wasn't the kid's fault. It hadn't asked for her and Nate to get carried away and forget to use a condom. And it sure never asked to be born a wolf. So she was going to do whatever she had to find a cure, even if it meant working with the twins.
"If, you mean. If it doesn't work."
Nate just gave her a look and she supposed that said it all, didn't it?
"We're going to be late for work," she sighed, indicating for him to step out of the unit. Sometimes and only sometimes, she wished that she had never let Aidan convince her to try for a normal life. Sure the life she had been living before she met him had not been great; it had been terrible actually, but she had a least known not to hope for something better then.
Nate was not impressed. At all. He had been skeptical when Joss told him about the deal she had made with Connor and Brin, more so when she had revealed how they had met. Nate wasn't stupid or oblivious by any means and when he had met them that morning, he hadn't missed the way that Connor watched Joss. Assessing and almost as if she was the most amusing thing he had ever seen. He knew guys like that, the ones who used people for their own gains or only saw them as an object to get whatever fulfillment they could. He hadn't liked at all how Connor's eyes kept straying to the area of Joss' stomach, the almost fanatical gleam that was in his eye. If what Joss had told him was true then their baby was a pure bred wolf. It's parents however, not so much. And so he really didn't think it was a good idea for them to be having any further contact with the twins, and yet like a bad penny they just kept showing up.
" I'm sorry," he couldn't help drawling when he saw Connor leaning against the admin counter at the Nurse's Station, "But I'm awfully busy curing people using scientific, non hypothetical procedures."
Connor scoffed, a smirk playing on his lips. "I understand your skepticism Nate, it's just that-"
"Actually," Nate cut in, "I don't think we understand each other at all. Joss told me everything. I'm a mutt; you're a pure bred. So while my lowest of werewolf social orders forces me to hold down an actual job, you spend your days living it up at wolf castle. Or whatever it is you do."
"We're more alike then you think," Connor placated. "And Brin and I just want to help."
Was this guy for real? He just wanted to help? Nate could have laughed, except the situation was far from funny. "But Joss doesn't want to be a wolf," he told the younger man, eyes narrowed. "She wants to be normal. She wants our child to be normal. More than anything. And I don't like you taking advantage of her."
Connor chuckled, patronizingly. "Nate, that's not what you are afraid of." He sighed and fixed Nate with a look that he supposed was to be taken as pitying. It just made him want to punch the guy all the more. "You're afraid that if Joss really does find a cure, she'll make you take it too." And with that the smug bastard walked away, leaving Nate glaring after him.
Being a wolf, yes he could admit that it made him feel good. That he didn't hate it like Joss did. But he had lived life before it and he was sure he could readjust after, if an after came. But if they were stuck having to change for the rest of their lives? He could admit to himself, if no one else, that he was fine with it. People got tossed a lot of raw deals in life, but it was how you dealt with those trials that defined you. He could adapt; had already started to. But the thing was, Nate would do anything for Joss; she was pretty much everything to him. So if his Doe Eyes said they were taking the cure, if a cure ever came? Then he was sure he would do it. For her. Even if part of him raged against the very idea.
A week went by filled with blood panels, for all four of them, and an MRI for Nate, performed off the books of course. Joss had to get Aidan to help with that one and she could tell that Nate was not pleased. The antagonism between the two of them was palpable. She didn't know why Aidan would be feeling less than charitable towards Nate, they hardly ever interacted so what could he have done to cause the vampire to dislike him? Maybe it was just a guy thing. She knew why Nate was mad at Aidan, of course. She had to admit in his place she would probably be angry as well; that didn't mean she liked it.
"How's it going with the Twins?" Aidan asked as they looked at the MRI. Nate was getting changed back into his clothes.
"It's interesting. Annoying? I mean Connor really thinks highly of himself that's for sure. He and Nate pretty much hate each other. Brin's okay. Fanatical, but okay."
Aidan snorted, causing her to look over at him. "What?"
He shook his head, looking amused. It was that look he sometimes gave her, the one she liked to call his "aren't you just a cute puppy" look. " I'm pretty sure Nate would hate any guy that had the slightest interest in you. Even if it's purely intellectual. Ever since you scratched him, he's become pretty-"
"Pretty what?" she pushed, raising both brows, unimpressed. Would the antagonism ever stop? Men, seriously!
"Pretty possessive," He finished, just as Nate came in. She shot him a look, trying to indicate that their conversation wasn't over, not by a mile. Aidan just smirked. "Well, I'll leave you two to it."
"You don't want to see what it shows?" she asked tightly.
Aidan shrugged, "You can tell me later." And then he left, leaving Joss with the impulse to throw something at his retreating back and Nate rolling his eyes.
"Are we going to do this?" He asked, somewhat impatiently.
"Sure, yeah…lets…do this." Joss turned back to the image. "Look at this brain activity, see how here, the Amygdala? You know how aggression seems to rise closer to the moon? I wonder if something was done here, to suppress it…" Joss trailed of thinking of the implications.
"It would also turn off fear and sexual reaction though." Nate pointed out. "Sure we feel aggressive and overly sexual closer to the change, that's definitely a big part of it. But not everything. I don't know about you, but I don't want to take the chance that we could cause irreparable brain damage to ourselves. It's not worth it."
Joss stood. " It's all worth it Nate," she told him vehemently. "I will do whatever I have to, to get rid of this curse. I hate myself Nate; I know you don't, but I do. I can't keep living like this. Everything in my life has gone to shit because of the wolf. Maybe I can't get back what I lost, but I will not let our child be affected in the same way. I want him or her to be happy. To not hate themselves for something out of their control. Something that we cursed them with."
"Joss," Nate sighed, looking at her almost tiredly. "They'll be happy if we are. If we show them that it's nothing to be ashamed of. Look at Connor and Brin. I know they aren't exactly the poster children for sanity, but they accept who they are."
She couldn't believe this. She'd suspected for some time that Nate wasn't fully happy with what she was trying to do, but she hadn't expected this from him. "And they want to be that all the time! My god, Nate, do you hear yourself? Sure brain surgery might not be the way to fix this, I'll admit. But every time I come up with something you shoot it down." She shook her head, pushing back her hair with both hands and took a deep breath.
"I'm going to go home now. I'm tired and I really just want to go to sleep, so that's what I'm going to do. You can come when your shift is done, or don't." And then she left, because really what could she say? She was tired of Nate's attitude; she was tired of the twins and just plain tired in general.
I should call Emily, she thought as she made the walk home. She might not be able to tell her sister about everything that was happening, but she could complain to her about how Nate and Aidan seemed to have a vendetta against each other and how she was pretty sure within a month she would have to stop wearing her Jeans and switch to something looser. Maybe Sally will be around, she mused as she stopped to make sure no cars were coming down the road. She could see her house, just across the street. The lights were on so hopefully that meant that at least Aidan was there. Maybe they could talk about what she had seen on the MRI; he could hopefully be objective about it. Or at least help her reason out all the implications…
She was blinded by two bright points of light then and the last thing she registered was that she was flying.