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Love's Gonna Lead Us

Love's Gonna Lead Us

Author: Jenny

 

Rated: PG 13

Summary: Story 1 in Beach House series.

Warnings: Mild slash; major sap.

Disclaimer: TAT characters belong to Stephen J. Cannell. Song lyrics belong to whoever wrote them, and it wasn't me. I'm making no money from this.

Notes: I've recently become quite enamored of the song below, titled, "Where We Belong". Each time I hear it, I see Face and Murdock, so I finally said, "What the Hell? Write a song fiction!" So, here goes.

Comments/Feedback: YES! (Please?)

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

Where We Belong

Artist: Jamie O'Neal

CD: Shiver

 

Say goodbye maybe that's one way to go

Walk away and say it's over call it history

Do I believe we'd better off apart

Can I see my world without you in it

Baby, not for a single minute

Let the moon give up the night

All the star leave heaven on high

The sun would burn out before I'd ever lose you

We can get over any wall

If we have to fly, run, climb or crawl

Love will always lead us back

Where we belong

Just today I woke up shakin' from a dream

I got a glimpse of life without you


All the good was gone

Then I realize you were lying next to me

I knew right then, baby, come whatever

When the going gets tough we'll face it together

Let the moon give up the night

All the star leave heaven on high

The sun would burn out before I'd ever lose you

We can get over any wall

If we have to fly, run, climb or crawl

Love will always lead us back

Where we belong

Baby, all we got to do is reach out

No laying blame, no guilty party

Lay our daggers down on the ground

Hold each other and say we're sorry

Let the moon give up the night

All the star leave heaven on high

The sun would burn out before I'd ever lose you

We can get over any wall

If we have to fly, run, climb or crawl

Love will always lead us back

Where we belong

Love is gonna let us back

Where we belong

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


            Face sat on the beach, staring at the ocean and wondering how he got into the situation he was in. Two weeks ago, he'd been happier than he had ever been in his entire life. The team was done with their stint for Stockwell. They had their pardons in their hands and the rest of their lives before them. BA was already freewheeling it back to Chicago to his mother. Hannibal was happily ensconced in an apartment in LA and in contact with his old agent. He himself had a list of apartments to see with the real estate agent today that would take the better part of the afternoon.

            So, why was he sitting here, gawking at the Pacific Ocean like he hadn't seen it everyday for the last week? Maybe because he didn't know where Murdock was. Oh, he knew, he just didn't understand. Murdock was still in Langley, Virginia. Still working for Stockwell. Stockwell had offered him a job he couldn't refuse. At least that had been his explanation when Face had inquired, rather explosively, why Murdock wasn't already packed and ready to go to the airport? If he had only listened when he had the chance, he wouldn't be sitting here now, half lost and without a clue where to look for the rest of him. Falling back onto the sand, he replayed the conversation.

 

***

            "Murdock? Why haven't you already said something?" Face stood in Murdock's bedroom, staring at the empty suitcase lying on the bed. "I mean, if you were having trouble packing, I would have come over to help you." He threw his arms up in exasperation.

            "No trouble, Facey. I'm just not packing for the same length of time that you are." The tall lanky pilot grinned, shrugged his shoulders and hefted the already stuffed duffle from the floor near the bed.

            "Murdock. What are you talking about?" Face stared at his best friend and lover. For two days, he'd thought of nothing but this time. The time when he, THEY, would be free to leave Langley and head back to the rest of their lives, this time, together. And now Murdock wasn't packed, wasn't ready?

            "Baby, I just got one little something I gotta do, then I'll be heading on out to LA and meeting up you all." Leather clad shoulders shrugged and the brown eyes smiled at Face.

            The Texas drawl was just a bit overdone and Face knew that meant Murdock wasn't telling him the whole truth.

 

****

            A mile away from Face's spot on the beach, in front of the third empty beach house today, Murdock wondered where to look next. His mission for Stockwell had gone blessedly well and now he, as well as the team, was free from any entanglements with the Company, ever again. For lack of anything better to do, he walked toward the busy pier a ways down the beach. Looking out across the azure waves licking at the sand, he heard once again Face demanding the one thing he hadn't been able to give him then, the whole truth.

 

***

            "Uh uh, no way, Murdock. I'm not leaving until you tell me the whole story. What little something do you have to do and why haven't you already done it?" Face dropped his own jacket and sat comfortably on the edge of Murdock's bed.

            Murdock shuffled uneasily. He ducked his head and didn't answer right away. He and Face had a lot of things in common and obstinacy was one of them. He knew it hadn't been fair to wait and spring this on Face at the last minute, but he hadn't quite known what to tell him.

            After all, how did you tell the man you loved that you weren't going home with him? That you weren't going to help pick out the perfect apartment and furnish it. That you weren't going to be able to start waking up next to him for the rest of your lives, because you had another, bigger obligation.

            How do you explain and expect him to understand that this obligation was even bigger than the love that you shared and the past that you had weathered together? That this was older and more dangerous than anything that you've shared and overcome? Murdock had been asking himself these questions for the better part of the last two weeks.

            And his answer had been the same every time. You don't. You don't tell him until you have to and you don't expect anything except what you get. And he knew what he was going to get: Face's anger, his irritation and disappointment and worst of all, his disillusionment.

            Well now Murdock had to and he had to face what he got. He swallowed hard and began to speak. "Face, I've gotta do one more mission for Stockwell and as soon as I get done (if I get done) I'll be meeting you in LA. I know I should have said something sooner, but." He trailed off as Face stood and changed. Became the Face of old. The Face that didn't love him, the Face that didn't know he was capable of loving him or anyone else.

            Murdock knew he could handle the anger and irritation. The disappointment Face would cover with the anger and irritation. But the disillusionment was all too easy for Murdock to discern and it hit him hard, breaking his heart and nearly shattering his resolve to keep Face in the dark about this mission. It was in the eyes that immediately blanked and shut him out. It was in the shoulders that went rigid and square; the fists that clenched against his thighs. It was in the cold words that came from the mouth that wasn't going to call him love anytime soon.

            "Stockwell? You're going to do something for Stockwell? Haven't we done enough for that man? Or is he just your excuse? Your excuse not to have to come home with me, to be with me like we planned?" Face stepped forward and planted a finger in Murdock's chest. "Because let me tell you something, I don't need your excuses. If you're just not coming, just say so. I've been alone before and I can be alone again!"

            The blue eyes bored into brown, but offered no real connection. The connection was gone, severed and Murdock wasn't sure how to get it back for now without compromising their forever. So he just swallowed and stepped away. "Face, you just have to listen to me for a minute."

 

***

            Murdock groaned as he recalled the last words Face had uttered to him, before walking away, before he had let him walk away.

 

*****

            Meanwhile from his spot next to the humming ocean, Face also heard his own voice echoing in his ears.

 

***

            "No, I don't." Face backed up as well and retrieved his jacket. "I don't have to listen to m anything you have to say. A week ago, two weeks ago, yeah, I'd have listened, but not now."

 

***

            Thumping his head back against the unforgiving sand, Face groaned aloud. "Why? Why didn't I just listen to him?" Knowing his answers weren't going to come to him now anymore than they had for last several hours, he finally stood and started to walk back toward the beach house he had impulsively stopped to look at.

            He and Murdock had planned to look at houses just like this one. Near the beach and a small airstrip. Murdock hoped, with Dr. Richter's help, to regain his pilot's license and maybe even teach. Even if no one was willing to hire him, he could at least fly for pleasure. Face recalled how animated his face had been when they discussed this. Murdock had waggled his eyebrows and promised to show Face what flying high was really like.

            Grinning at the exuberance that always abounded from Murdock, Face remembered agreeing. His grin grew even bigger at the next memory of doing some high flying of his own when Murdock had swooped down and devoured his mouth and his heart, carrying him over the edge and deep into their love. That had been their last night together. The next day had seen the fight that had separated them in anger and disappointment. Recalling the joy of the night and the anger of the next day, a sudden loneliness for his mate overcame Face and he nearly gasped at the cold emptiness he felt.

            He needed Murdock, like the night sky needs the moon and the stars to be complete. Without a doubt, Face knew that no matter what happened, no matter who tried to get between them, as long as they were together, as long as he could wake and see the one who made his life complete, lying next to him then they could make it through anything.

            Making up his mind, right then and there, Face hustled toward the house and the little white sports car he had rented to meet the real estate agent and cancel this afternoon's appointments. As he neared, he could hear noises coming from the pier on the opposite end of the beach. This house was perfect and he knew that he had found their home. He would be ready and waiting, when Murdock got to LA, to listen for as long as it took. He wanted, needed to understand what Murdock had to do for Stockwell so that they could get on with their lives.

 

*****


            Murdock, unable to find the peace and tranquility Face always seemed to find in the tides of the ocean, began to walk back to the empty house on the beach. He shoved his hands in his pockets and kicked up little sand storms as he walked. He listened to the birds call over his head; he heard the waves lapping against the wet sand edges. The wind blew in occasional bursts, and from the pier about a quarter mile behind him now; it carried the now fading voices of children, fishing with their parents. All of this Face would have said was calming. Murdock simply felt frustrated that none of these noises were telling him where to find his love, Face.

            Continuing to walk, slow and steady, Murdock thought of where else he could look for Face. He'd checked every beach house that was available in the area they'd agreed on only weeks before. His heart refused to believe that Face would really desert all their plans. He couldn't, because if he did, Murdock would not find him and he wouldn't have the chance to explain just what had kept him in Langley and away from Face and all their dreams. He had to explain. He had to hold him close and make him listen.

            There was simply no way he was going to say goodbye to Templeton Peck. It wasn't over, it couldn't be over, history. He wasn't complete without Face beside him. His world was empty without him, without them, the whole entity that they made. Face and Murdock. Murdock and Face.

            No! No goodbyes, no overs, no history. If he could only find him, he could make him understand. Resolving that he would make this happen, Murdock turned back toward the house and the empty car he'd seen. He'd been so sure that the sporty little coup had been Face's that he'd sent the taxi driver away. Maybe he could catch a ride back to LA and call Hannibal for ideas on where to look for Face.

            Seeing that the car was just about to reverse, he sprinted to an all out run and quickly grabbed the passenger door. "Hey Mister, listen, I really, really need." Looking up, he focused breathlessly on the driver.

            "Face!"

            "Murdock?"

            Face opened the driver's door and stood looking across the top of the car at the man on the other side. Murdock straightened and held his gaze.

            "I was just going to get our house."

            "I've been looking for you for two days."

            Each man spoke simultaneously. Their words tumbled over each other and jumbled together. Falling silent, they watched each other over the expanse of white metal. Eyes swept over features too long unseen. Cheeks, brows, lips that longed to touch and be touched; hair that hadn't felt loving, raking fingers in too many days. Hungrily, each watched the sun play over the other's face. The winds blew their scents to avid nostrils and each man drank in all that was the other.

            Finally, licking his lips, Murdock attempted to speak, "Face, you just have to listen."

            "Yes." Face spoke immediately. "Anything. I'll listen to anything, just keep talking."

            "OK. I know you don't understand why I stayed for Stockwell, but I want to try to explain it to you." He looked at the other man for a sign.

            Face nodded, a bit more wary now with the mention of the cause of their falling out, but still willing. "I'm listening."

            "Stockwell needed a pilot to fly into the Middle East and bring out another captured pilot. He asked for me, because this other guy was CIA and well, you know I did some work for the company before Vietnam, right?" When Face nodded, he continued to speak. "This pilot had some information that needed to get out, but Stockwell wasn't willing to risk his own pilots to do it."

            Face interrupted, "Then whatever information he had couldn't have been that important."

            "No, it wasn't, not really. But you know Stockwell as well as I do." The pilot shrugged and continued. "Stockwell knew all about my previous association with the CIA and exactly what those associations were, Hell, I think he knew stuff I don't even remember, ya' know?" He pointed at his head with one finger and grinned wryly. "He knew about Richter and the VA, all about Richter and the VA, how you'd come get me out and how Richter would let me go. He knew about Amy and Tawnia. He had lots of info that could have hurt folks that have been very good to us."

            "So you helped him to protect our friends?" Face felt his heart fall all over again to the kind soul that had chosen him to love.

            "Yep. and ." Murdock hesitated and took a deep breath. "Stockwell knew about us, Face. He knew how long and when and where. he, the Company, whatever, has been watching me for a very long time. And he promised that if I refused, he and the Company would continue to watch me, us. Face, I did it for us, for our future and for the team's future."

            Face swore under his breath and ached for just one more shot at Stockwell. One more chance to put his hands around that bastard's skinny neck. He clenched his fists and pounded them lightly against the car's top. "Damn it!"

            "Face, I'm sorry, I didn't know, I mean, why would they watch an insane pilot, living in a psych ward for ten years." Murdock stammered in the face of the other's anger.

            "No, Murdock, you don't have anything to be sorry for. I cut you off then, just like I did now. I should have listened, should have known you wouldn't just blow me off." Face unclenched his fists and reached out across the car top.

            Murdock moved his own hands to the center and tightly grasped Face's outstretched ones. "No, I'd never."

            Pleadingly now, Face tried to explain why he had reacted as he did. "I know, and I'm sorrier than I can say that I even thought it. It was just instinct I think. I mean, all my life, just when things look good and I think I may have found happiness, something happens to snatch it away from me. I think this time I just decided not to wait for it to be snatched away, for you to walk away. I pushed you away and shut you out." Face squeezed the hands entangled with his, feeling their warmth and strength. These hands loved him, made love to him. How could he have doubted?

            "So, are we okay, now Facey? I've been so lost without you." Murdock asked quietly. "I'll do whatever it takes to make it okay."

            "There's nothing to do. As long as we have each other, we can get over any wall, any obstacle, any problem. We just have to hold on tight and ride it out." Face pulled slightly intending to prod the man into coming around the car to him. He laughed delightedly when Murdock stepped up into the car seat and vaulted himself over the car top.

            Dropping lightly to his feet, Murdock stood close to Face and looked deep into his eyes. "How's that for overcoming any obstacle?"

            "I'd say that's just about perfect, Murdock." Face chuckled softly and leaned forward. He brushed his lips over Murdock's chin, up to his left cheek and then over to his right. Finally, he pressed his lips firmly against the soft warm ones he'd dreamed of for days. Mouths parted and tongues lightly caressed. Drinking in the taste of Murdock, Face gripped his hips and pulled him closer.

            Hip to hip, chest to chest, their world stilled and they knew only each other. Their hearts seemed to beat loudly in their ears, neither sure if he was hearing his own life's blood pounding or that of the wonderful man in his arms. Warm hands slid under shirts and caressed familiar flesh beneath. When one had no breath, the other gave. When one shifted, the other shifted as well. Bodies strained and pressed closer, longing for more intimate contact.

            "Face"

            "Murdock"

            Breaking apart, they gasped and struggled for control. Each recognized that a public beach wasn't the place for this particular reunion. Swallowing hard, Face stepped back but not before lightly nipping Murdock's lower lip. "I love you, Murdock."

            "I love you, Facey."

            Retrieving a lock pick from his pocket, Face jerked his head toward the small beach house. "Wanna go see our new home? It seemed to suit us. I think it must be where we belong."

            "We belong wherever we are, Face. Where ever we are, together, anyway." Murdock looked back up to the house and nodded. "But since we're here, together, this looks like a good place to start the rest of our lives."

 

THE END

 


Love's Gonna Lead Us by Jenny

 

 


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