Characters/Pairings: Annie, Sam/Annie
Word Count: 945.
Summary: Annie's never gone in for comforting answers.
Notes: For jeonggam, because she's a sweetie. ♥ Also for the ficalbum challenge. Enjoy?
i was following a trail
i'd never been along before
chasing darkened skies above me
looking like the spring
like the winter
and the morning
-- belle and sebastian, waiting for the moon to rise
Sam Tyler. Well, Annie's not sure if he's crazy, but he's got his hand on her heart. (She wasn't pretending to read her psychology textbooks, at university.)
There's something sweet about him. Even if it's just insanity.
(Annie falls asleep thinking about those fingers tracking the beating of her heart. In her dreams, he never mentions a girlfriend.)
'Why would I make it up?'
Because if this is all some dream, if she's a ghostly figure lurking somewhere inside Sam's brain, then why does she deal with being the bird from the women's department? Why's she out here on the roof?
And that feeling, when he takes her hand. How could he imagine that burning inside her chest?
Or how good it felt, even while it stung?
When he turns out to be like everyone else, naked and chained to a bed, it shouldn't hurt so much.
It's not like Annie needs... well, whatever would happen if she and Sam were any more than friends.
But couldn't he have dreamed himself as something better?
Someone who maybe never met Annie Cartwright?
Here's the problem with being Sam's friend: when Annie looks at his fingers, she starts picturing them entwined with hers. Or running through her hair. Or resting on her waist.
So usually Annie just thinks of him as Sam. Some things don't need definitions.
And sometimes she doesn't like defining what she doesn't want to admit.
Sam says, 'I don't hate everything about this place.'
And Annie smiles before she can say anything.
What would she say?
'I couldn't hate you if I tried?'
Sam Tyler's turning her into a liar by omission. Annie's a little startled to find out she likes it -- the hidden peaks and valleys of her mind, hidden away from everyone but herself.
Maybe it's a little like his head.
And then she could swear he almost kisses her, before. Well, something. An attack from that other world he's always talking about.
Here's the thing: Annie's getting a little fed up with this game of smoke and mirrors.
Either she's friends with Sam or they're something else. Or nothing at all.
He makes her DC and then, later, when he's probably sloshed, he puts his arm around her shoulder.
And before Annie can think about the fingers on the end of that arm (brushing against her cheeks, maybe?), she shrugs it off and goes home.
She sits in her flat for a few hours. She's trying to think about nothing at all.
Annie gives Sam a few weeks, though, because she's that kind of girl. (Besides, she went out to the pubs a few times and the blokes there couldn't raise more than a polite smile. So it's not like she's got all these options.)
Then suddenly he's Tony Blair and Sam/Tony can't keep his hands off of her. If Annie didn't know it was all for the sake of work, that as the bird who made DC she's got to do this, she might think it was a dream.
So she focuses on the fact that this is her job, now, to be Cherie Blair and not Annie Cartwright. So she doesn't fish Sam's keys out -- not that she'd do that anyway -- and even smiles when she's handed a whip.
And when Sam looks a little horrified at the sight of her, a vague dominatrix with her red slip, Annie can tell herself that it's not like he was looking at her.
If he saw her, he'd see everything too clearly, anyway.
(Which maybe is what she likes about him. But it'd be a secret, if she'd admit it.)
'You have to start with what you know,' he says, with that look in his eyes, as if the length of him is pressed up against her.
And this is what Annie knows: that if he's mad, then she craves madness. That she wants him to look at her like this often. That she wants his hands. Well, Annie knows (although she wouldn't say, unless she was very drunk) that she wants his hands everywhere. Annie knows that she wants him to stay, even if he's making it up.
'And what do you know?' Because maybe he knows something like that. It's important.
But Frank Morgan walks through and Sam turns and Annie leaves.
Maybe Sam's wrong and it's her that's making this all up. Maybe her imagination is just really masochistic.
Annie's never gone in for comforting answers.
Somewhere in a poem the hero presses his fingers to the damsel's heart and sweeps her off her feet and it's all terribly romantic. (There's a feeling of deja vu, in all the poems and love stories.)
Instead, Sam asks Annie to spend the night.
And she's a pretty modern girl, really, but even if heartbreak's terribly fashionable, it's also terrible.
Driving home, she wonders if she actually avoided a broken heart by leaving his flat.
Sam Tyler's not like the other coppers Annie knows. She's thought that a lot, since meeting him.
But most coppers don't admit to betraying everyone they
Annie thinks she could maybe forgive him. She could really do with a drink.
And there he is, Sam Tyler, waiting for her outside the pub. His second chance at Prince Charming, his grin hesitant and his eyes beseeching. And he has no idea what to do with his hands.
'What should I do, Annie?'
'Stay,' she says, and then, because no matter what she's become since meeting him, she still has these moments of transparency, 'forever.'
When Sam kisses her, his lips are thin and a little soft and she can feel the smile pressed into the corners of her mouth.
And that's when Annie's completely positive he isn't mad. This isn't a story he's made up in some fevered dream or coma or something.
Because how could he have made this up?