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do i dare or do i dare? [userpic]

Chaos fic: My Head Told My Heart (1/1)

October 29th, 2013 (09:03 pm)
bouncy
Tags: , ,

feeling: bouncy

Title: My Head Told My Heart

Disclaimer: I do not own Chaos.

A/N: Look! Chaos fic where I didn’t whump Billy! The universe must be imploding! Either that or I wrote this for lena7142, for whom I would write anything. (She gave this a beta, too!) This fills my unrequited pining square for hc_bingo.

Summary: Michael uses his head. Which is why it figures that it’s his heart in the end.



-o-

Michael uses his head.

That's always been his MO, even when he was a kid. When other kids blinked big round eyes full of tears, he planned his way out of everything. He argued with teachers; brokered deals with his parents. He thought three steps ahead and got what he was looking for.

That's why he never could become a doctor -- he could ace all the classes but he could never treat a patient. The idea of a throbbing heart or grumbling intestines is more fascinating than actually seeing them at all.

And this is how he wooed Fay. He thought far enough ahead, he analyzed her emotional wants, and planned everything perfectly. By the time she ended up in Paris, there was no way she'd say no.

This is also why Michael's divorced. He can only plan so many things. He loved her with all his mind, but since his heart...

He knows how it beats, and he knows how it pumps the blood, but it doesn't know how to make it feel.

No, Michael uses his head.

Which is why it figures that it's his heart in the end.

-o-

He never sees it coming.

He has no reason to. Not really. He knows the risk factors, and he doesn't have most of them. He runs; he's healthy. He eats pretty damn well, aside from the occasional candy bar. He has no history of it. He's getting older, but he's handled it well.

And he always thought the stress was normal...

He doesn't think twice when it keeps him up at night, when he paces across his living room floor with a file. He's never slept much anyway, and he pops a Tums to handle the rest.

When his chest twinges, it's only natural. He's reading about suicide bombers; drone strikes killing children. He's reading about human trafficking, and countless lost teenagers who will never be seen or heard from again. He's logical to the point of being obtuse sometimes, but he's still human. If he didn't have some compassion, he could never do this job.

He doesn't notice how often it happens.

He keeps working.

In his mind, that's the only thing to do.

-o-

It's a night like any other. His dinner is settling, though, and he doesn't bother laying down. He's tired, but his mind is restless, so he turns the lights low and walks throughout the rooms of his house.

Sometimes he misses Fay. She brought softer touches, gentler embellishments. She's a practical woman, but still one with passions, and sometimes, in the night, the house seems wrongly vacant without her.

He seems vacant somehow, like something's missing.

His stomach churns, a spike of fire through his chest. He frowns, taking a drink, and opens the file. It's an easy case, he thinks. Open and shut. The ODS can handle it, no problems, no questions asked.

But he can't sleep.

He reads the file again, listening to the floorboards creak. He'll be up in three hours for his morning run. He should sleep.

He pauses, grimacing. His breath catches.

For a moment, his vision swims.

Something's not right. Alarm bells start going off, and Michael tries to analyze the symptoms. Stomach, chest. Nausea, dizziness.

He winces, rolling his shoulders. A tingle starts down his side, radiating up to his chin.

All the symptoms fit; they all point to one thing, and Michael knows it. He just doesn't understand...

Then the pain strikes against, squeezing him like a vice, stealing his breath and tunneling his vision. Everything goes dim, and his knees buckle. He tries to brace himself, but the hardwood is cold when it greets him.

He tries to breathe, but can't. He tries to think....

There's nothing left to think, though.

Above him, the light is haloed and distant now, and the papers from his file are spread across the floor. He tries to plan a way out of this, a miraculous way to get his phone from the kitchen counter where he leaves it every night. He tries to plan a way to call Billy or Casey or Rick. Or even Fay. Someone with clearance to clean up the mess before someone unofficial came in.

He's paralyzed, and the pain has left him numb. He gapes, the dimness rising as his consciousness ebbs.

There's nothing left to think, now.

There's nothing left at all.

-o-

Michael uses his head for a living.

He just never thought it'd be his heart that killed him.

PART TWO

Fay is guilty of letting her heart take the lead. Not all the time, of course -- she works in the CIA, after all. She makes her living from sorting information into logical, usable forms and assigning it an actionable purpose. But the reason she’s as good as she is isn’t her head. No, she’s smart, but her success is because she knows how to listen to her heart.

She knows how to understand the information; she knows how to make it human. This is why Higgins listens to her advice: he knows she’s got her heart on the line.

That makes it personal. That works in her favor.

Most of the time.

-o-

She turns it off, though, more and more. Her heart hurts so bad the day she serves Michael the divorce papers that she has to. She can’t see him and feel all that. She can’t work with him and have all those emotions. She can’t send him into the field if her heart is always working overtime.

So she stops. She makes it stop. She ignores it, pretends like it’s not there. She gets colder and clinical. Sometimes she’s detached.

It’s the only way to make this work.

She tells herself it’s not so bad.

It’s the only way.

-o-

It’s a night like any other. She makes herself dinner and watches TV for a while before talking to her mother on the phone. She texts a few friends before settling down with a good book.

When she’s sleepy, she slips beneath the sheets, and that is that.

Then, Fay wakes with her heart pounding. She blinks her eyes in the darkness, trying to breathe, trying to think. She sits up, heart still racing, as she looks, she listens.

To silence.

There’s nothing wrong.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong.

Swallowing, she reaches for her phone. There’s no new messages. No sign of activity. Obsessively, she pulls up her email. There are a few standard notices, but nothing unusual.

Nothing.

Her head tells her to go back to sleep, so she settles back in bed and fluffs her pillow. She adjusts the sheets and forces her breathing to even.

It’s nothing.

Absolutely nothing.

-o-

She can’t sleep, though. The minutes pass and she tosses and turns. Her heart skips beats and thunders in her ears. And this time, she just can’t shake it.

Sighing, she gets up and reaches for her phone again. This is stupid, she tells herself. This is so very, very stupid. She shouldn’t do this. She just shouldn’t.

But she does.

She dials the numbers by heart, and sits back against the headboard, chewing her lip while it rings. It goes to voicemail.

This is Michael. Whether you leave a message or not, I’ll check up on your call.

She closes her eyes, and her heart sinks.

-o-

Stupid, she thinks.

Stupid, stupid, stupid.

She’s out of bed now, throwing on a sweatshirt. She gropes for her keys, tucking the phone under her ear as it rings again.

This is Michael--

She curses, killing the call. Michael never lets it ring. She’s tried all the numbers that she knows. She’s texted him, emailed him -- everything.

Her mind knows better, but her heart wins as she gets in her car, starts her ignition and starts to drive.

-o-

She’s shaking when she gets there, no matter how many times she tells herself she’ll hate herself later for this. Michael is sleeping, maybe. Maybe he’s working. He might not even be there.

At his house, she puts it in park and gets out, slamming the door shut without even locking it. She goes up the steps and rings the bell before pounding on the door. “Michael!” she calls.

There’s no answer, but there are lights inside.

“Michael!” she tries again, pounding harder. Her chest is so tight it hurts. “Michael! You better answer or I’m coming in. Michael!

She doesn’t wait for an answer. She pulls her keys and slips her copy into the lock and lets herself in.

Inside, everything is in its place. She moves cautiously. “Michael?” she asks. “You there?”

Then she turns the corner, and her heart stops.

Because there’s Michael, sprawled and pale on the floor.

Crying out, she goes to her knees, shaking him. Her voice is high pitched and strange, but Michael doesn’t even flinch. His skin is warm, but when she presses her fingers to his throat, there’s no pulse.

There’s nothing.

Fay stops feeling -- and acts.

She calls 911 first, before starting CPR. The exertion is sickening, and she feels Michael’s chest move under her touch. She presses harder, though. She knows what she has to do. Michael’s heart’s not working, so she needs to work it for him.

She needs to save him.

“Please,” she begs, tears running down her nose as she works. She bends down, blowing two breaths into Michael’s slack mouth. “Please.”

And Fay starts up again.

-o-

A heart attack.

That’s what they tell her at the hospital. Michael still has her listed as his next of kin, and she’s never been more grateful for Michael’s refusal to let go. They take him up to the OR to perform the surgery, and they say his condition is serious but that their cardiothoracic surgeons are very good at what they do.

In the waiting room, Fay sits numbly. She doesn’t know what to feel now. She just knows the facts.

This is Michael. He’s stubborn and he’s stupid, but he doesn’t quit. If anyone can survive this, it’s Michael.

No matter how scared she is, no matter how terrified, she knows that much is true.

-o-

The next day, Fay handles the paperwork. She calls the Agency; she calls the ODS. She handles all the details, because that’s what she does. She comforts Rick; she reassures Billy. She manages to talk Casey out of killing someone.

When Michael wakes up, she’s the one sitting there, holding his hand and smiling at him. His brow wrinkles, and he looks confused.

“Hey,” she says.

“What happened?” he asks, the words barely audible and slurred.

“You had a heart attack,” she says.

He looks concerned by that.

“They took care of it,” she says. “You’re going to be off your feet for a while, but they’re optimistic.”

Michael shakes his head. “But--”

“But nothing,” Fay tells him, placing a restraining hand on his shoulder. “Besides, you could look at this as good news.”

He looks at her, questioningly.

She grins so wide it hurts and her eyes water. “At least this proves that you were right,” she tells him. “You really do have a heart.”

Michael chuckles tiredly, his eyes starting to drift shut. “That’s not so bad, then,” he murmurs as his eyes close and don’t open again.

Fay holds his hand, listening to the sound of his heart monitor. Her smile wavers, and she rubs her thumb over the back of his hand. “No,” she agrees, looking at his face. Logically, this changes nothing, but her heart knows otherwise. Her heart just knows. “That’s not so bad at all.”

-o-

Fay listens to her heart more than she should.

The thing is, sometimes it’s right.

Comments

Posted by: kristen_mara (kristen_mara)
Posted at: November 3rd, 2013 01:24 am (UTC)
Tardis Stephen


Eeeek, Michael! This could be the jump-re-start that he and Fay need!

Well done at leaving Billy alone in this one *G*

Love the musings from both Michael and Fay re their heads and hearts and Fay saving him

Posted by: do i dare or do i dare? (faye_dartmouth)
Posted at: November 25th, 2013 08:15 pm (UTC)
billy casey trouble

LOL, Billy didn't even get slightly injured in this one! That's practically a first :)

Thanks!

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