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THE COMFORT OF EACH OTHER 1/2

posted in 24_fanfic

Title: The Comfort of Each Other, Chapter 1
Author: marinw
Characters: Jack/Chloe/Renee
Rating: PG for angst
Summary: Post Day 7 AU. Jack and Chloe find a moment together. Spoliers for 7.13. If you haven’t seen that episode, you may want to skip this.
Disclaimer: 24 is the Property of the Fox Production Company, who have once again torn out my heart and stomped on it.
A/N: I am not now, nor have I ever been, a Jack/Chloe shipper. But this a scene I desperately want to see. Thanks to my beta, cybertoothtiger.



“You’ll have some company. We’re a little pressed for space today,” the FBI agent snarled as he pushed Jack into the holding cell. The agent didn’t remove the handcuffs until Jack was inside.

Jack absently rubbed his wrist together as he gazed about the holding cell. Standard issue. A steel door and windowless, unlike the almost quaint dungeon-like cell at the White House.

His eyes immediately landed on the small figure in the green sweater and the long brown hair huddled on the bench.

Chloe.

She lifted her head to show her tear-streaked cheeks. Her green eyes were rimmed with red.

Jack knelt next to the bench, placing his hand gently on her knee. He was determined to behave like a normal human being. Even if it killed him.

“Who told you?” He asked softly.

“I don’t know. Some guy.” Chloe mumbled. She wiped her face with her sleeve.

“I’m so sorry you found out about Bill this way. I wanted to tell you myself.”

“But you were busy. I know. Did you catch the other guy?”

“Yes. And I got what we needed from him. It’s over.”

“Okay.”

“It’s not okay, Chloe. It should have been me.”

Chloe stated to cry again.

Jack sat down on the narrow bench.

“C’mere,” Jack mumbled as he pulled Chloe into an embrace. He stroked her hair.

It was a lot less awkward than it should have been.

But he needed Chloe to stop crying. He needed that because he was now perilously close to tears himself.

Jack didn’t have to look up to know that there were at least two closed circuit-cameras in the usual positions, high on the wall in the corners of the small room. Everything he did was being watch and recorded. That was why Chloe hadn’t asked about Tony.

I can’t let them see me cry.

Why do I even care? I don’t give a damn what these people think.


But that was one of the rules Jack had set down for himself, not to let anyone ever see him cry. Jack had established that rule early in his childhood, after his father had punished him for being a crybaby.

He knew how to lose people and move on. He had a lot a practice. He had learned how to compress his grief into as brief a time as possible.

But only if he was alone. Only if he had to deal with his own emotions, not anyone else’s.

Jack wasn’t alone now.

Jack tried to establish a perimeter around his tear ducts.

That worked about as well as any other perimeter.

Dammit.

It was too late now.

A sob escaped his throat as he held Chloe just a little bit closer. He felt the unfamiliar sting of salt liquid upon his cheeks.

After a few moments they let go of each other.

“He was such a great guy,” Chloe said, “After CTU was shut down I couldn’t get a job anywhere. So I stayed home with Prescott. Then Bill offered me an opportunity. He gave me another chance.”

“After I got back from China I was pretty messed up.”

“Messed up? You were a basket case.”

“Bill took care of me. Helped me get back on my feet.”

“He was really nice. Now he’s dead. And we’re both going to prison.”

“Not necessarily.”

Jack and Chloe looked towards the new voice. Renee was standing at the doorway.

“Agent Walker, would you please give us a moment?” Jack requested politely.

“I’m sorry Jack. The President wants to see you. Now.”

“What the hell for?”

“That’s for you and the President to discuss.”

Renee had reverted to being a by-the-book agent. Interesting.

“Fine,” Jack growled. He stood up, and compliantly placed his hands behind his back.

Renee cuffed Jack with a practiced efficiency.

When was she re-instated? Jack wondered. He noticed two other, larger male agents outside the door. As if Renee couldn’t handle him. Jack smirked.

“Let’s go,” Renee ordered.

“Chloe…”

“She stays here.”

“It’s all right, Jack. I’ll be okay. I guess. It’s not like I have a choice.”

“We’ll see each other soon.”

“Yeah, Jack. Whatever.”

Chloe knew better than to believe him.

TO BE CONTINUED…

Comments

( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
(Anonymous)
Jul. 10th, 2009 03:14 pm (UTC)
awwwwwwwww! you couldn't have switched chloe and renee? chloe would be the one to say come on and renee would be there for jack? :( anyway, great story.
marinw
Jul. 10th, 2009 03:43 pm (UTC)
Hee. I guess it works both ways. With Jack/Chloe I get a brother/sister vibe, with Renee, it seems to be something pre-romantic.

Thanks for reading.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )