[livejournal.com profile] milliways_bar: Las Vegas

Dec. 8th, 2006 11:47 am
bloodyrockgod: (weight of the world by mediocrechick)
[personal profile] bloodyrockgod
"I have something for you," says Jack. He bends to give Georgia a quick kiss in her play gym. She squeals and makes PapaPapaPapa grabby hands, so Jack scoops her up.

"Oh?" says Charlie absently--he's concentrating on getting cheese layered evenly in a burrito casserole.

"Yes. Should I be worried that you're doing your cooking experiments on us?"

"Oi, I'm just trying to keep up with Darien. He's a good cook--I'm just a good follower of recipes." He dusts off his hands and grins at Georgia, who is pointing at him and babbling to Jack. "So what you got? It's not payday."

"Nope, but it is your birthday." He gets a small wrapped package from his satchel and gives it to Charlie. "Happy birthday."

"Oh, Jack--" Charlie says, embarrassed. "You didn't have to."

"I know. That's why I like to. Go ahead, open it."

Charlie tears the cheerful blue paper off the package and smiles uncertainly at the gift inside. "What is this?"

"It's the new Beatles album. Well, it's a remixed-remastered thing but it's really incredible. You'll love it."

"Thank you," Charlie says and hugs him, and kisses Georgia's hair. "And thank you too, baby girl." She pats his cheeks and makes the noise that they have decided means CharlieCharlieCharlie.

"It's from all of us--me and Gil and Georgie and Little No-Name."

"I won't kiss Gil--I don't think he'd appreciate it. Can hardly wait to meet Little No-Name. That'll be interesting--two babies." He shakes his head as he puts the CD into his backpack.

"Are you all right?" Jack says gently.

"Yeah, of course. Just, two babies--two divine babies, yet. I feel like I finally need to learn to juggle so I can handle the household."

"You can do it," Jack says. "You're great at it. Though really, once Gil makes his retirement final I'm giving the business to Thomas and we're heading home to England."

"Oh," Charlie says quietly. "Yeah. I'd forgot about that."

Jack looks at him a moment, and says casually, "Well, you can still nanny for us if you really want to, but given the spare time you'll have you might prefer spending it making music again."

"Ah," says Charlie.

"Yes," says Jack. "Isn't that the first thing you tell everyone? 'I'm Charlie Pace, I'm a musician'? Though you haven't been making much music lately."

Charlie shrugs into his jacket. "Maybe I ran out of things to say."

"I doubt that very much. What is it really, Charlie?"

Charlie shrugs again. "It's nothing. It's--I'm happy. I'm contented. There is nothing I would change about my life."

"Nothing?"

"Maybe one thing, but there's nothing I can do about that. He grew up without me and--"

"Charlie," Jack says gently and Charlie closes his mouth and sighs. "I know you're still afraid, but it's not about Seth anymore. I mean, whenever you go back to the island there's Aaron--who does need you. But you're not his father, either."

"Is this supposed to make me feel better?"

"No. Did you want it to?"

"Some fatherly wisdom would not be out of place right now."

Jack nods to the couch. "Come on. Let's sit." Charlie sits cross-legged in one corner and leans his head on his hand, and when Jack sits Georgia crawls to Charlie and pats his leg. Charlie gathers her up and kisses her hair.

He says slowly, "Darien once said I'd just have to trust him. And I do. I do. I know he's never going to run away or abandon me for somebody else. I trust him absolutely. But I think about us being parents and everything inside me just freezes."

"Why do you think that is?"

"I don't know, why do you think that is? Talk to me like a bloody therapist . . ."

Jack smiles. "I'm just listening, Charlie."

"Well, the listening isn't helping. Tell me something. Tell me anything. Make it better, Jack--isn't that what gods do?"

Jack reaches over and plays with Georgia's hair. "No. We don't make it better. We just make it bearable."

Charlie huffs and says in a desperate voice, "Then make it bearable, Jack."

Jack moves closer and pulls Charlie's head to his shoulder. He strokes his hair and says gently, "If you trust Darien, then trust him. Not the insecurities and the doubts--they don't tell you the truth. And the truth is, the two of you are a family. Whether you have children or not, no matter how the island interferes with your life, no matter what happens with him and the Agency--the two of you are a family. You know that in your heart, don't you."

Charlie nods.

"Okay, then."

Charlie sniffles. "Okay, then, what?"

"Okay, then, what are you going to do next?"

Charlie sniffles again. "I'm going to go home and celebrate my birthday with my husband." At Jack's look he amends it to, "With my family." He gets up from the couch and picks up his backpack.

"Trust yourself a little, too, Charlie," says Jack, standing to see him out. "You're more ready than you know."

Charlie nods and gives Georgia a quick kiss, smiling when she pats his face. "We'll see," he says simply and leaves the house for the Bar.

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Charlie Pace

July 2007

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