A/N: Originally posted to tumblr but I do like to have all my things in one spot so here we are.
Disclaimer: I don't own the characters in this they belong to Janet Tamaro and Tess Gerristen and TNT.
You don't know when it hit you for the first time. Not really anyway, how could you? You don't know when loving her turned into being in love with her, when platonic shifted to romantic. It just did. Unexpectedly. It blindsided you.
And as you sit in your living room a pen idly tapping on the table, the lined paper in front of you is mocking you. You wish you paid more attention in composition class in college, wish you actually went to "real" college, but that was a problem for another day. But this, this stupid paper is now.
You sigh and toss the pen down, flinging yourself backwards against the sofa with a small groan. This will be the death of you.
Before you can dwell further, the door opens and you can't help the smile already fighting its way onto your face. You hear them, your family. Sam who is four going on twenty-five and Daniel who is in his terrible twos. And her. She smiles at you, and it feels like falling in love. She kisses you on the lips, briefly, but gives you a wink afterwards that you know all too well and it still makes you blush, but in a good way. In the best way.
You take Dan the Man from her arms. He giggles into your shoulder and you hear her laugh as she walks around the counter with Sam to put the groceries away.
You rock back and forth with your son before he demands to play. You comply, because even at two the little guy has you wrapped around his pudgy little finger.
It's bedtime and your reading to Sam. She is practically in your lap trying to read over your shoulder, but refuses to read out loud to you. She's afraid she's going to mess up, you think. Just like her mother.
You smile, just thinking of her. You smile and your heart beats faster and way back when you can't believe you thought this was a passing phase.
You finish the story and your daughter yawns big and wide while asking for another. You promise a longer one tomorrow night if she goes to bed now. She makes a face that makes you laugh and she looks a little proud of herself for that so she relents and you kiss her forehead, tell her you love her, turn out the lamp and walk to the door.
And she's there to greet you. A smile on her face, robe tied in a knot at her waist, hair mussed and damp, completely free of makeup, and you are breathless.
Her grin says 'I love you' before she can vocalize the sentiment. Her eyes say it too and you hope yours are saying it back. This unsaid, unwritten communication has always been between the two of you. Her promise from earlier comes back in hands around your hips as you shut the door, in a mouth that barely grazes yours as she whispers follow me against your lips. And you do and it feels like falling in love.
You are having a staring contest with the stack of post-its in front of you. They are winning. You have paperwork, sure, but this, this is more important. And that question pops back into your mind. When did you first feel it? When did you fall for her first?
It irks you that you can't remember. Or that you don't know. That you don't know which it is. Because where does that line come from? And why? And when? And how? But you know how. It was her eyes, and her smile, and her hair, and her completely unapologetic dorky demeanor. It was her heart. The way she let you inside of it without question, though it did take some goading at first. But that first time, that first time is always elusive.
You're a detective and these things matter. But still the post-its are winning and your pen dangles loosely from your fingers.
At home, it's just the two of you.
You asked your mother to watch the kids and the dog and you've planned an impromptu date night right in the middle of your kitchen. The look on her face when she walks in is worth the burn on your middle finger. The way she kisses you is worth more than all the money and playoff games in the world. She kisses you and you kiss her and it's magic coalescing between you in pools of electricity.
You eat, side by side and there's idle chit-chat but you can barely keep your end up when her foot slides out of her heel and up and down your calf. The smirk on her face tells you she knows exactly what she's doing and you love her for it. You love her. You're in love with her. And when you finish dinner, you show her.
Today is the day. And the paper in front of you is still winning. Your pen is still not gliding across the page.
You are still stuck.
You sigh. She calls your name from the bathroom and you go, because that's what you do. She needs help zipping her dress. Her pointed look at you through the mirror is on a different wavelength than her body as she leans into you as your fingers hover over the zipper. She sighs heavenly as you zip up her dress and kiss her neck and then you leave and you almost, almost, miss the pout that crosses her face.
Back in your bedroom you look down at the ring on your left hand as you straighten your button up and adjust your trousers. It's a simple silver band, nothing flashy, and so completely you. You've had it on for five years today. You grin at yourself proudly before your eyes fall to the family photo on the dresser.
Your family. You never thought you would actually have one outside of the one you grew up in. But here you are. Married with children.
You look at each of their faces. No one looks like the other. It's mildly hilarious, you think. Frost thinks so too. You remember how she didn't get the humor in it until you pointed it out. And then she laughed that uncontrolled, deep belly laugh. And you don't know if that's because she, herself, was adopted or because she was finally let in on the joke. Either way, it makes you a little sad.
But looking at that picture, completely candid during a BBQ with your friends and family, you can tell there's love. Daniel is on her hip head on her chest, Sam is holding your hand looking up at you with those big eyes, and she's smiling at you while you talk to your mother about something.
In this picture, none of you look alike. None of you ever look alike. Sam with her deep auburn hair and dark green eyes, Daniel with his shock of blond hair and bright blue eyes, you, and her. Anyone could tell your kids are adopted. But you swear to god if someone tells you that isn't your son or daughter or tells them you aren't really their mother or that she's not really their mother you will find something to charge them with (or more than likely punch them in the face.)
You feel hands on your shoulders, and you relax. You can feel her smile as she hugs you from behind. Are you ready?
You watch as your wife mingles.
Though it is your anniversary, you have to be here. It's part of the trouble of marrying someone involved in so many different organizations and charities. There are a lot of functions. And sometimes they fall on days like anniversaries and birthdays.
It used to bother you, the way people stared at her as she walked the room. Early on, you were jealous and angry and sarcastic.
But now, you feel like you've grown a bit. Sure, there are times when you want to punch some guy in the face for staring at her ass or her boobs, but you refrain. You remember the first time she claimed you as her partner at one of these events. You remember how her voice didn't shake (like your knees were), how she beamed at you, with love in her eyes regardless that the person she was speaking to took a step back.
And now, as you watch her mingle on your anniversary you find yourself just enjoying the view, enjoying the wine. You're in a hotel lobby and you think about getting a room for the night. You're supposed to go to a bed and breakfast up north for the weekend but you and her are both tired and worn a little at the edges. Your decision is made when you catch her trying to hide a yawn behind her hand.
She is asleep on your shoulder.
You don't remember lying on the bed or flipping the hotel TV on, but you have and here you are. Her dress is going to wrinkle, you say to yourself. It can't be comfortable sleeping with that many bobby pins in her hair, you say again. But she shifts and rolls a little more into you and you are breathless and so in love it actually makes you teary and god, you need sleep.
In the end you rise from the bed. Softly and slowly, in a move you perfected from many a night with a sleeping child on your chest. Her heels are the first to come off, and then her hose. As your hands trail down her thighs she shifts.
And you crawl up the bed towards that voice, because that's what you do. Sleepy, unfocused hazel eyes blink back at you trying to focus. I love you. It slips from your mouth and she grins at you, a lopsided smile. And she is so damn adorable and you are so damn lucky.
Sleepy. Is her one worded answer and you feel her breath against your face and you are so in love. You smile and kiss her nose. You begin the job of dismantling her hair, bobby pin by bobby pin and set each piece on the table next to the bed.
The next morning you come out of the hotel bathroom wrapping a towel around yourself and she is sitting on the bed hand over her mouth, but you can see her smiling through tears as she stares at a slightly crumpled piece of hotel stationary paper.
Your heart is beating fast when she looks at you. She practically launches herself in your direction, and the towel on your head falls to the floor as her fingers brush over your neck and her lips press against yours. I love you, Jane, so, so much. She says and you are going to lift off into outer space because you are so damn happy.
The piece of paper falls to the floor between you, forgotten. But you have it memorized.
Right now, you are sleeping. And making these cute little noises and sometimes your face twitches and it's really adorable. I've been trying to find out when I fell in love with you, like the first time I actually felt it. And I either can't remember or I don't know. And it bothered me for a while. But it doesn't anymore. Because every moment with you is like the first time, it's like falling in love all over again. Like when you smile, you still knock me off my feet and when you are all dressed to the nines and we have to go to these events or when you're at home with pudding in your hair, you are the most beautiful creature I have ever laid eyes on.
It's been five years, Maur, can you believe it? It's been the best five years of my life. I love you with all my heart, here's to the rest of forever.