Warnings/Spoilers: This story follows on the action of the episode Serpents.
Convergence by Lumina~
Ain't nothin' like this time.
Still night ahead of me, wakin' day behind. Meetin' in a hazy line in the sky and showerin' down to the ground in a light like no other. Not the black-silver of night or the blue-yellow of day, just a mixin' of it all that looks pulled from the earth 'stead of comin' from the sky.
And there ain't nothin' like this place. Don't look like much, just some dusty brown rocks thrown down in a small, shaky circle, like a handful of a kid's jacks. But it glows with that light, at this time, seemin' to seep right from these old rocks and their ground. Only an hour will see 'em as just some dusty brown rocks again, but for now, there ain't nothin' like this place at this time.
Let my horse amble on over to 'em and step off of him onto one of them. Sit myself down, back to where I come from, facin' where I'm goin'. Then I do like always, lift my face to the stars of night, feelin' that bit of warmth from the risin' sun on my back, and I close my eyes. I breathe it all in. The night and the day. The cool and the warm. The light and this place. And I open my eyes then and know, as they find that one man ridin' out of the night hidin' Four Corners, ridin' to me, that for one more day, there won't be anythin' like this place at this time.
I wonder again if the boys back in town ever think on why the times I'm late gettin' back from night patrol are the same as when Ezra's leavin' early on dawn.
Don't matter to me what they think, if they do, 'bout it. Does sure to Ezra. I know. Seen that loss in his eyes. Loss of his openness we'd finally seen, his respect for himself, the place he had with us. Never did see the loss of that money there, in his eyes, when Judge Travis took it and the rifle into "the custody of the court." Too much mournin' what he thought he had with us to miss what he knew he never coulda had.
Felt that loss myself. Not the rifle, sleek and fine as it was, its aim in my hands so true that it made my belly tighten and my breath hold with the feel of it. But that was a cold kind of a loss. Not like what I felt when I saw that empty look in those green eyes of his 'fore it was hid behind a false fire of humor and good nature. He's hidin' himself again, just like he did when we first knew him, only this time we might not get him back. Think maybe it's harder to get trust back that you throw away than it is to get it in the first place. And we threw it all away, his for us, for himself, ours for him, for ourselves.
Think, too, maybe we were wrong 'bout him. Think maybe we shoulda trusted him. But if he had made off with that money, I'd like better to have lost him that way than the way we did.
Didn't know it'd hurt so much losin' the real Ezra behind the one he shows the drifters and the grifters, the easy marks, the greenhorns. Maybe he thinks we won't know how much he's hurtin' that he can't show us himself anymore. Maybe the others don't know. I know.
I feel it too. I'm hurtin' too, every time I see that false fire. So's I went to him one day and apologized for not speakin' for him, for not trustin' him, for him bein' declared guilty of takin' that money 'fore he did and no one sayin' a word when I already done took that rifle. And I saw him again, just for a moment. The real Ezra. He's there.
Don't know if it was my words or just the plain fact that I said 'em when no one else did, or if it's 'cause he thinks I lost something too in the rifle. Don't know why he does it, but as he rides up to me with the sun slowly warmin' the night on his face as he gets nearer, I know, for once more, there ain't nothin' like his light at this time in this place.
Words don't come into it now. They done some healin', but here, now, we don't need 'em. I don't want 'em. Just want him. The real Ezra. The one so sleek and fine in my arms, the light of him in his eyes with an aim so true it makes my belly tighten and my breath hold and goes straight to my heart. And now I'm too much knowin' the joy of havin' somethin' I never thought I could to mourn the loss of a thing I didn't need anyway.
He stands beside me on that rock, and now it's like that light like no other, from the sky, from the earth is comin' all outta his eyes, outta his skin and sparkin' like lightning between us. And when he turns his eyes to mine, when his hand, his skin touches mine, I know this time, this place will be like no other.
We slide down into that circle of stones, into the soft dirt they hold, and do our talkin' with our bodies now. Don't know what he hears in mine. I hear the real Ezra in his.
The whisper of him is there in the way he strips outta his clothes, back to me, 'fore he tosses that look at me over his shoulder, the light in his eyes kindlin' with true fire, his mouth liftin' with mischief. He murmurs to me with the breath that drifts across me, hot and steady and needin', as it pulls in my own. His skin sings along mine, glidin' smooth with our sweat, the muscle and bone underneath meetin' mine strong, note for note. His hands speak to me most of all as they travel my body, sure, wanting, trusting.
In this time, in this place, his true light is here.
And when we both shudder and come, he shouts his joy of it, but I stay quiet. I feel his fingers trace my face, see the softness dimmin' the light in his eyes like the mornin' sun soon will the light in this place at this time.
Words can heal. But words can cause bitter hurt too. And my belly tightens and my breath holds waitin' to feel the deadliest aim of all.
He needs me now to help him heal. But when the healin' starts between him and the others, his light in this place at this time won't be mine anymore.
But he needs me now, and his light is mine in this place at this time.
My answer is true, but my aim unsure as I hold that light in this place at this time.
Any day, Ezra.
Just one more day.
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