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This page last viewed: 2017-10-20 and has been viewed 2851 times
By Jullian Gray
Warning: H/F slash, angst, language, mention of suicide
Special Thanks to Shee for making this readable
'Why?' Face had asked himself that question a thousand times over the last three days.
'Why hadn't he insisted that
'Why had he left his lover alone for two days when he knew he was sick?'
'Why hadn't he called home?'
'Why weren't BA and Murdock back
'Why, why, why?'
But as much as he wanted to know why, the what's scared him more.
'What would he do without the other man in his life?'
"You got to get better, Hannibal?" Face whispered
to the older man who was heavily sedated in the hospital bed. He could feel the
tears stinging his eyes as he once again thought about
It had started out as a simple cough that wouldn't go away,
a few days later the cough became more and more persistent.
Then there had been the seminar on accounting and investing
that Face had signed up for over a month ago. Face had tried to cancel, but
Face had hurried home, driving straight through the night
stopping only to refill the vette and go to the
bathroom. He pushed himself, and the car harder than
he should have, but he had an uncontrollable desire to get back. He had to make
Pneumonia the doctors had told Face, how could something as
simple as a virus, a little bacteria take down the man
he loved. It just wasn't possible.
The doctors guaranteed Face that
It was now midnight the start of Face's forth day by
"John." Face quickly moved to take the older man's hand. "Do you need anything? Something to drink?"
Face helped him sit enough where he could take a few swallows of water before laying back down. Just the simple act left him tired and weak, but there were a few things he had to know.
"Eat?" he whispered.
Face looked at him for a second then smiled. "The cafeteria is closed, but I can find you something."
Before Face could move
"Not… me… you?"
"Me, I'm fine
Face stopped when
"Okay it was earlier this morning…" Face started
again, but stopped as
Face looked down into
"I don't remember." Face sighed. "Don't worry, you go back to sleep and I'll go grab something alright."
"Mr. Peck, can I get you anything?" Face jumped
slightly as the nurse entered
"Thanks, I was wondering…" Face was about to ask
if she could have some breakfast brought up to the room when
"Good morning Mr. Smith, how are you feeling today?" The nurse moved past Face to pop a thermometer into the Colonel's mouth before he could answer. As the nurse took his temperature and blood pressure he glanced over at Face.
"Well your temperature has gone down, but your blood pressure seems to be a little elevated." The nurse wrote several quick notes down on her chart. "Now, why don't you just relax an orderly will be in here in just a minute to take you to have some tests done." With that she went out the door leaving the two men alone.
"How you feeling John?"
Face moved to
"Better…than…you look. Tem…did you…"
Before he could finish an orderly came into the room.
"Morning Mr. Smith time to have a chest x-ray, we need
to see how well that stuff is clearing up." With Face's help they
"We'll see you in an about an hour." The orderly told Face as he wheeled the Colonel out of the room.
Face thought about going and getting something to eat while
"When did you two get here?"
"Bout half an hour ago." BA looked up at the clock on the wall.
Instead he looked down when Murdock pointed to the bed just below his right hand; just like last night Face's head was buried in his arm laying only inches from his fingertips.
"How long has he been asleep?"
"About five minutes." Murdock looked up at
"He needs to go home."
"Done tried," BA huffed. "Fool won't leave your side."
"Get him out of here."
"He won't go." BA sighed.
"Not a request Sergeant, it's an order.
"You sure about that
"Take him home."
"He is run down." Murdock agreed as he looked at his best friend. Run down now that was an understatement, Face looked more like run over. "Still he ain't going to be happy."
"Whatever it takes."
"When do you want me to take him home?"
BA nodded as he rose to walk over to Face, he was about to
reach down and grab the younger man's shoulder, but
"Are you sure, you need something to drink?"
"BA, is going to take you
Face looked at
"Not asking you, I'm telling you."
"I won't leave." Face's jaw tightened in defiance.
"Then I'm ordering you."
"He'll be alright Facey, I'll stay with him while you go home and rest, promise I won't leave his side." Murdock held up his fingers in a Boy Scout salute.
"You don't understand he needs me…"
"Go home, eat, get a good nights sleep, I'll see you tomorrow."
"I love you kid, but you are going home."
"Come on Face, Colonel done laid down law. Let's go."
BA grabbed a hold of Face's arm and pulled him away from the bed. BA was
surprised when the smaller man twisted his body and slipped out of his grip,
before he knew it Face was back at
"No John, please." Face begged
"I'm not sending you away Tem, I want you with me always, but you need rest."
Face looked down at the older man, he wanted to stay, he needed
to stay; he had to make sure that
"I could sleep in the chair. I promise to…"
"At home Tem, for me."
Pulling Face forward again he kissed him gently.
"BA, don't let him back here till tomorrow evening."
"No." Face shook his head.
"On it, Colonel." BA growled as he grabbed Face around the waist. Face tried to twist around again but this time BA was ready for him, he moved his right arm to pin Face's upper body to his chest.
"We're going home little bro. Colonel's done gave the order."
"Go home Tem, I'll see you in the evening."
Realizing that he wasn't going to win Face began to get mad. "Let go of me BA! Damn you let go of me!" Face continued to struggle as BA tried to remove him from the room.
"Lieutenant Peck, that's enough!" though the voice was weak it still held authority. Face instantly stilled in the big man's arms.
"You will do as you were ordered Lieutenant, do I make myself understood."
"John, please?" Face turned to look at
"Yes or no Lieutenant?"
"Not good enough Lieutenant, I want an answer."
Face opened his eyes,
"Take him home, Sergeant."
"Come on man, be tomorrow night before you know it." BA let go of Face's waist and moved his arm to the younger man's shoulders, gently guiding him toward the door.
Murdock rose as they crossed the room toward him. "Don't worry Muchacho, I won't leave him for a minute, and I promise to call if anything changes, okay?" Murdock expected some type of response and was shocked when Face walked by him without saying a word. "Face?"
"He'll be alright Murdock, just give him some time to
"You need anything
"Just to know he's okay."
A slight smile formed on BA's face as he watched Face climb into bed.
"You sure you don't want noth'n to eat before you go to sleep?"
"I'll eat when I get up, just want to lay down right now." Face sighed as his tired body rested on the soft mattress.
"I'll be on the sofa if you need me little bro."
"Thanks BA." Face flashed the big man a grin as he turned off the light.
"Anytime man." BA's smile widened as he closed the bedroom door.
Face waited an hour before he slid out of the bed; he
quickly dressed in a pair of jeans and a t-shirt before sliding out of his
bedroom. Despite his fatigue Face easy slipped past BA who was watching TV on
the sofa. Once he made it to the garage Face took
BA looked up when he heard a rumbling sound coming from the garage. 'He wouldn't.' he thought as he climbed off the couch and headed toward the garage, he opened the door just in time to watch Hannibal's car shoot down the driveway.
"I'm going to kick your butt when I get my hands on you." BA growled as he hit the button to close the door before running toward the front door and his van.
Face ran across the parking lot he was almost at the hospital entrance when the black GMC van slid to a stop in front of him blocking his path. Face started to sprint around the van, but BA was faster, he grabbed Face by the back of his shirt and jerked the smaller man backwards.
"Get off me!" Face screamed as he shoved against BA forcing the bigger man back.
"Calm down man!" BA managed to stop Face's forward momentum but the younger man still kept struggling to break free. "I don't want to hurt you."
"I'm not the one who's going to get hurt! Face snarled as he twisted his body free. "Now leave me the fuck alone!"
BA felt his own anger growing, he knew Face was upset about
He quickly reached out and snagged Face's arm. "Face listen, I'm going to take ya back home, you going to eat something, then you going to sleep." BA tightened his grip as Face began to struggle even harder.
"Let go!" Face tried to take a swing at the big man, but BA was ready for him. He grabbed Face's wrist and twisted it around behind the smaller man's back, using his body weight he slammed Face against the side of the van, he pressed his body close to Face's body effectively preventing the younger man from kicking him. "Damn you!" Face struggled against BA "I won't leave him!"
"Shut up and listen to me." BA snarled in Face's ear. "You acting like a damn fool."
When Face tried to break free of his grip BA shoved his arm farther up his back causing Face to hiss in pain.
"You listen to me and you listen good! The Colonel worries about you, and if he sees you in that room tonight, he'll get upset cause you with him instead of rest'n, and I ain't going to have it!" BA pulled Face off the van as he began to shove him toward the passenger's side of the van. "Now get your butt in the van." With that BA opened the door and shoved Face inside before slamming it shut.
"What do you want to eat?" BA glanced over at Face as he pulled into a drive thru at Belly Busters.
"I'm not eating anything from here."
"Man, it's after midnight, this is the only place that is open."
"And I'm not eating here!"
"No you look!" Face snapped. "It's officially Friday, I'm catholic, there isn't a damn thing I can eat here, so you might as well keep on driving, because I'm not going eat any of the greasy crap they sell!"
BA stared at Face for a minute not believing what the blonde had just said to him. Face had always been very reserved when he spoke to him, sure they'd had fights and arguments over the years, but Face had never been like this. 'His blood sugar is low, aint his fault, he can't help it, he'll be alright once he eats, just get his sugar up.' BA took a deep breath to calm himself down, after all it wouldn't do any good to punch him in the mouth.
"I'll fix you a sandwich when we get to your place."
"What the fuck ever." Face muttered as he turned to look out the window.
"I know you're worried about
"Yeah, that's comforting," Face snorted still not bothering to look at BA "half the time he can't even take care of himself."
BA thought about trying to get Face to talk again, but after looking at his aggressive body language he decided to leave the blonde alone. The second the van stopped at the beach house, Face jumped out, slamming door behind him. He had the front door open and was halfway to the bar before BA even had a chance to get out of the van. By the time BA found the younger man, Face was on his second shot of bourbon.
"You don't need to be drink'n that stuff."
"And I don't need a mother." Face growled as he poured another, slammed it back, as he reached for the bottle.
"Then stop acting like a baby!" BA stomped over to Face, and grabbed the bottle. "Go get in the shower while I fix you a sandwich."
Face glared at the big man for a minute before shaking his head. "Whatever."
"You got ten minutes before I come looking for you." BA warned, before heading to the kitchen. He wasn't sure but he thought he heard Face say 'Fuck you' as he went up the stairs.
Face striped out of his clothes as he marched across the bedroom toward the master bathroom. He didn't appreciate the way that BA was treating him, not one damn bit; he was a grown man for Christ sake, he didn't need a baby sitter, he was more than capable of taking care of himself.
As Face stood in the shower with the water streaming over
his body, his mind began to think about his lover. He knew that Murdock was
Face began to shake as the image filled his mind, he could
have lost him,
What would he do without Hannibal, the older man was his
life; he lived and breathed to be with his Colonel, to feel his strong arms
around him, to see the sparkle in the bright blue eyes, to know that he was
loved and possessed the ability to love someone back. If
BA hadn't planed on allowing Face to spend forty-five
minutes in the bathroom, but it had taken him a lot longer to find something
that the other man could eat. For someone who had diet restrictions on a
certain day of the week Face sure as hell didn't keep much in the house to
accommodate for that day. Though he guessed that the two men
most likely ate out on Friday nights. He looked at the now cooling bowl
of vegetarian vegetable soup and the peanut butter sandwich,
well it was better than nothing, which was what Face had mostly been eating for
the last few days. BA glanced over at the kitchen clock again before shaking
his head. Fifty minutes was more than enough time for a quick shower and a
change of clothes. BA was tired of the game, he knew Face hurt and was afraid
something would happen to
"I've had about enough tonight, I don't care what you want, you goin…" Words, which quickly died, on his lips when he saw his friend huddled down in the middle of the shower stall, moving swiftly for a man his size, BA opened the door and turned off the now cold water.
"Face?" BA reached out and gently squeezed the younger man's shoulder; he noted how cold Face's skin was to his touch. "Face?" he called out again and was grateful when the blonde looked up at him, or at least he was until he was the lost look in his friend's eyes.
"What's wrong, you hurt?"
Face looked up at him for a minute before he shook his head no.
"Then what's the matter?"
The blonde swallowed hard several times before finally opening his mouth.
"Icouldhavelosthim." The words came out in one strangled sob as Face dropped his head back to his knees. For a second BA could only look at the smaller man, completely surprise by guilt and pain he heard in Face's words.
"Ahhh man." BA pulled Face into his arms; he could feel the smaller man shake as sobs racked his body. "He's going to be alright, Face, doctor's done said so."
"He's… my… life." Face gasp between breaths.
"I know, little bro, I know." Having no other words to say BA rocked Face in his arms until the sobs subsided. Once Face seemed to get himself a little more under control, BA decided it was time for action. He pulled Face to his feet and led him out of the bathroom, grabbing two towels as they moved past the towel rack, he wrapped one around Face's narrow waist before taking the second to dry off the younger man's cold skin.
"I can do that." Face protested weakly.
"Shut up fool, you lucky to be standing upright." BA growled, but the soft smile seemed to make the words less harsh. When he was finished he led Face to the bed, pulling back the blankets he pushed Face down onto the bed, then covered him back up. "I'll be back up here in a minute, don't you fall asleep."
As soon as BA left the room Face curled into a tight ball, despite BA thorough drying he still felt cold, as if all the warmth had been sucked out from his body. Once again he began to shake as he thought about a life without his lover, never again feeling the older man's strong arms around him as he spooned in behind him at night.
"Done told you he's going to be fine now quit!" BA's angry voice cut through his despair. Face jumped slightly when he felt BA grab his shoulders and pull him into a sitting position. "Now you goin' to eat, then you going to sleep." BA commanded as he set a tray down in his lap.
"I'm not hungry right now. Maybe…" Face tried to push the tray back but BA grabbed his wrist in a vice like grip.
"You got two choices, you either eat on your own or I'll force it down yu' throat. One way or the other that food is going inside you!"
Face was shocked by BA's sudden mood change, the big man had always had a temper; hell he had been on the receiving end of it more than once, but this. 'No.' Face corrected himself, he deserved this, he had been a complete ass to the other man earlier and he should be thankful that BA hadn't pounded him into the ground when he had thrown a punch at him.
"I'm sorry, BA." Face picked up the mug containing the soup, though it was everything he could do to hold onto it with his trembling hands. "I just can't get over almost losing him."
"You ain't got noth'n to be sorry for." BA's large hands covered Face's smaller ones as he helped the blonde raise the cup to his lips. He watched Face take several swallows before he allowed the smaller man to lower the mug and set it on the tray.
"I know how you feel." BA took a deep breath before he continued. "There were times in the camp when they would bring you back that I was afraid you wouldn't make it. I felt so helpless." BA lowered his head. "Should have been able to protect you."
"BA, that was different you couldn't have done anything."
"And neither could you, Face, how was you going to
"You don't understand, I love him…if I were to lose him..."
"No you don't understand!" BA's head shot up as he stared at Face, anger in his eyes. "I know exactly how you feel, I've almost lost you more than…" BA stopped when he realized what he had let slip out, quickly he turned away so he wouldn't have to look at his friend's shocked and disgusted face.
"BA?" Face called out softly, when he got no response he touched the big man's shoulder. "I'm sorry, I never meant…" This got a response but not the one he expected, instead of turning to face him BA grabbed his hand in a crushing grip.
"Don't need you're pity." He growled still not looking at Face.
"BA, let go, you're hurting me." Face stated calmly and was relieved when the big man let go of him. "BA, look at me."
Slowly BA turned to look at Face, though instead of the anger and disgust he expected to see, he saw understanding and compassion. "I'm sorry if I gave you …"
BA held up his hand to stop Face from talking "You never lead me on, I knew you loved the Colonel from the moment you laid eyes on him." BA smiled briefly. "Never seen someone so head over heals in love in my entire life. I knew I never stood a chance with you."
"You're right I have loved
BA took Face's wrist pulling his hand away from his cheek "Don't con me man, I ain't nothing to look at, hell I ain't nothing but a big dumb mud sucker."
"No, you are a very beautiful man," Face smiled as he placed his other hand on BA's cheek. "I could have very easily fallen for you if I hadn't found John. You have a lot of the same qualities."
"No BA, you are both smart, caring, kind, companionate and you both make me feel safe when you're near me."
"You ain't just saying that?" BA stared into Face's eyes.
"No, I'm not just saying that." Sitting up a little straighter Face pulled BA forward and kissed him gently on the cheek, before moving his mouth to his ear. "And you are both a major pain in my ass." Before he could pull back he found himself wrapped in a bear hug, he could feel the rumble in BA's chest as he laughed.
"Love you, Faceman." BA hugged Face tightly one last time before releasing him. "But you still going to eat."
Face looked at BA for a long moment then smiled as he picked the sandwich up. "No meat?"
BA watched as Face buried himself under the blankets and closed his eyes, he couldn't understand how Face could still be so calm around him, but it made his heart soar knowing that he hadn't lost his friendship with the younger man.
As he stood to leave Face rolled over to look at him. "Would you stay with me?" Face swallowed hard. "I…I don't… want to be alone."
"Sure man." BA moved started to pull up a chair when he noticed Face had scooted over on the bed. "Face, I don't know…"
"Please?" the despair in Face's eyes was enough to break BA's resolve. Taking off his boots BA laid down on top of the covers beside Face. He was pleasantly surprised when Face scooted right up next to him.
"Hang on little brother." BA sat up forcing Face to back away.
"I'm sorry, I'm asking too much from you." Face started to turn away, but BA stopped him with a gentle hand on his shoulder.
"Ain't that, just want to take these off so you'll be more comfortable." BA pulled off the three gold chains he was wearing and placed them on the nightstand beside the bed. With his hand he pulled Face back down so the blonde head was now resting on his chest.
"Thank you." Face whispered his voice thick with sleep.
"Anything for you Face," reaching out with his left hand he stroked the now sleeping man's hair. "Anything for you."
BA smiled as he watched Face shuffle into the kitchen still half asleep, the younger man was barefoot, he wore a pair of baggy gray sweat pants and a faded Michigan state T-shirt; his hair was sticking out in several different directions.
"Mmm." Was the only answer he got as Face made his way over to the coffee pot; noting it was empty he moved over to the toaster, finding it also empty Face sighed before moving back to the coffee maker. God he missed Hannibal, the older man always had the coffee made, and bread in the toaster for him every morning when he came down.
"How you want your eggs."
"Don't want any." Face mumbled as he moved to pull a bag of bread out of the breadbox.
"You going to eat somethin'"
Face didn't say a word he just held up the bread as he moved over to the toaster and stuck it in.
"You going to eat more than that."
"Don't eat much in the morning, makes me sick."
"That's bull, Momma always said breakfast was the most important meal of the day."
"Then go fix breakfast for her." Face mumbled as he moved to get a plate and coffee cup out of the cupboard, before moving back to the coffee maker, Face poured himself a cup; grimacing at the strength of the black liquid.
"Look BA, I've been eating the same thing for the last twelve years, I don't plan on changing now."
BA was about to protest farther when Face's toast popped up, the younger man grabbed the toast out of the toaster, tossed them on his plate then turned his back to the big man as he sat at the table.
"He reads his paper and leaves me alone." Face flashed him an annoyed look as he bit into the toast.
"Fair enough, you need me to help you out with anything around the place?"
"Yeah you can drive me back to the hospital as soon as I get dressed."
"Ain't happen'n man, Colonel said he didn't want to see you until tonight and I ain't taken you back till then."
"Oh come on BA," Face glared at the other man. "I've slept and I've eaten, what else do you want."
"You still look like crap, come on Face it's 7:30 in the morning how long have you really slept." Before Face could answer BA held up his hand. "Have you looked at yourself in the mirror this morning? Your eyes are blood shot, with circles so dark they might as well be blacked, you ain't going back to the hospital until you get some more rest and that is all I'm goin' to say about it."
Face narrowed his eyes as he looked over at the big man across from him. "Are you threatening me?"
"No I'm promising you, you try and sneak out of this house and I'll sit on your skinny butt."
Face continued to glare at BA for another minute, but eventually dropped his gaze to his coffee cup. "Fine."
"Thought you'd see it my way." BA grinned as he watched Face roll his eyes.
After breakfast Face went back up stairs on the pretense of going back to bed, only to return a few minutes later to flop down on the couch.
"Thought you was going to bed."
"Can't sleep." Face rubbed his tired eyes.
"You shut your eyes for two minutes you'd fall sound asleep."
Face didn't say anything for a minute he just looked out the window at the ocean.
"fraid of what."
"You ain't alone, I'm right here."
"That's not it." Face sighed; then fell silent for a moment as he looked down to study his hands before speaking. "I don't want to live without him."
If Face had been watching he would have noticed the angry that was building on the big man's face and would have been prepared for the sudden jolt he received when BA snatched him off the couch and shook him like a rag doll.
"Don't you say that!" BA snarled in his face. "Don't you even think like that!"
"BA, let go of me…"
"No! You promise me you won't do noth'n stupid!"
"I can't." Face looked down at the ground only to have his head snap back up when BA grabbed him by the jaw.
"Damn you Face, promise me or I'll break your skinny …"
"Let him go Sergeant!" the voice was weak, but still held power and authority.
"John." Face gasp going completely still, then began to struggle even harder to get out of BA's grip.
BA turned around to find a very tired and pale
BA automatically let go of the Face when his commander ordered him.
As soon as he was free Face ran over to his lover who was now leaning against Murdock for support.
"What are you doing home?"
"That the type of greeting I get for saving your butt?"
"I love you John," Face smiled at
"He checked himself out against the doctor's advice." Murdock frowned at the older man.
"Look I'm fine just a little weak."
Face studied his lover for a minute, taking in his tired and worn face. "Let's get you up to bed."
"First I want to know why BA thought it was necessary
to try and kill you."
"We were just having a really strong debate over…"
"Shut up Face, I didn't ask you."
"It's between me and Face."
"If it concerns him it concerns me."
"I was worried about his health."
"You thought it would improve if you shook the daylight out of him?"
"Man, I don't want to talk about this right now…"
"Not another word Face."
"John, please your still sick…"
BA looked over at
Face nodded his head yes, as he pulled away to lower it again. "Can't live without you." He whispered.
Murdock and BA watched as
"You two are more than welcome to stay, but keep the noise down."
Murdock looked over at BA then shrugged as he took a seat in
a recliner and turned on the TV, keeping the volume down low. BA looked at the
couple on the couch,
"You need something Sergeant?"
"What did you say to him?" BA shook his head "figured you would have torn him a new one for thinking the way he does."
BA sat and watched the two sleeping men for several more minutes, still not believing what he had just heard.
"Guess we need to make sure we keep them both safe huh." BA turned to look over at Murdock who was staring at him with tears in his eyes.
"Yeah, going to have to take care of both the fools."
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