A/N: I did not intend this chapter to end like it does, but you know how it is when you're writing and the story takes you somewhere so exciting you don't want to change it?
It was nothing like that.
Dedicated to BenCarey for being awesome and quite inspiring.
KENSINGTON, LONDON, ENGLAND
It was easy to go mad when stuck in a three-room suite when you weren’t talking to the only person keeping you company. Hero was good at isolation, sometimes for months on end she had not spoken to another living soul. But James was driving her mad. He had not protested to a thing she had ordered him to do, taking every word with silence and dignity. His playful sarcasm had disappeared utterly, often he sat completely still with his eyes closed, as if asleep, but Hero knew, somehow, that he was watching her through closed eyelids. Then she realised that was nonsense.
He had asked, in a quiet, serious voice that she had never heard before, if he could still operate his multi-million pound empire via his phone. She had agreed, though hesitantly. She wasn’t sure what he did exactly, put she knew he had fingers in too many important pies for him to pull them out and lick them clean. It was more important nobody noticed than someone managing to track his phone, as the latter would never happen if the former never occurred.
That morning, she had gone out to get them coffee, his latte with extra-shots, and her sugar-filled peppermint mocha. As always, they had sat in silence. James had broken his routine, opening his eyes and putting down his BlackBerry. Instead, he had stared at her unblinkingly, frowning slightly, till she could bear the sight of his crystal clear grey eyes no longer.
“What?” she snapped.
“Are you talking to me now?” James replied softly, with only the tiniest hint of irony.
“Perhaps. Why are you looking at me like that?” Hero demanded again.
James was silent for an infuriatingly long time, but this didn’t stop him gazing at her intently. “I hope this doesn’t offend you, Hero.” He paused, and Hero gestured for him to continue. Again, he remained quiet, but this time he seemed to be thinking what to say. “I’m trying to remember. I thought, seeing as I knew you… before… you might ‘jog my memory’, so to speak.”
Hero blinked hard several times. It would do neither of them any good if he remembered, she had decided. She had come to terms with him leaving. Perhaps the reason was something she didn’t want to know about. And if he remembered, he would never stay. It was only chivalry keeping him here, if that even existed. Trained as she was, he would easily overpower her. Firstly because he was about twice as heavy as her, but more importantly, because those eyes were getting to her. She couldn’t hurt him anymore, even if she wanted to. “You knew me before?”
“Ah, yes. Well, apparently, I was hopelessly in love with you,” he grinned, obviously making fun of her now.
She blushed, and then quickly recovered herself. This was easier. She could deal with that. “Indeed? And, do you know if the feelings were reciprocated?” she asked dryly.
“No… your friend was a little hazy on the subject. However…” he paused, and rested his elbows on the coffee table. At some point in the conversation she must have unwittingly moved forward, and now their faces were only centimetres apart.
Hero breathed in sharply. “I know an effective way of finding out,” James whispered, and brushed his lips very softly against hers. Before Hero knew what was happening, she had her arms around his neck and was returning his kiss, running her fingers through his hair and pulling him towards her. There was nothing outside of him, the way he smelled, his touch...
Too soon he pulled away. Hero gasped.
“That answers that question,” James said, his voice simultaneously husky and clipped, business-like. “Too bad I don’t feel the same anymore.”
Then he got up, and left the room, without looking back.
|Rachel McAdams||as Hero Pierce|
|Cillian Murphy||as James Carter|