Spoilers: Up to Season 2 “Critical Mass”
Summary: He knows you can't allow your feelings to rule you. Kav/Simpson angst/UST.
A/N: Betaread by Fanwoman.
He hadn't been lying when he'd said he had nothing to stay for; he doesn't really. He has colleagues and associates, the latter being people who could broadly be described as friends. But that’s not a good enough reason.
Still, he finds himself drawn back. Even if he has very few friends, it’s not to say that there isn't anyone he cares about; someone that he wants to know better and wishes they might want to know him better, too.
But he finds she's barely interested in his academic appeal, let alone his limited personal charms. She seems to take the greatest pleasure in shooting down his theories. Ever since that time Weir sided with her, there has been a contest of sorts between them. He hadn't intended this to evolve, but if it's the only real reason she has for talking to him, then he isn't going to cut it off, not without good cause. When he'd been away, he'd sent communications back here. In fact, he'd never had anyone to send a personal message to back on Earth, but going “home” ironically, signaled his need to keep that channel open, however hate-filled their relationship appears.
He wants to call her a friend, of a sort, but the term doesn't fit in any way. She plays devil’s advocate in a particularly vindictive way, because she knows he'd do the same if he'd been asked his opinion on something. Even with his fondness for her, he knows that's true; he wouldn't go soft - lying, however subtle or slight, just isn't his style.
He considers what she nearly cost him, though; their communications, strictly professional but hushed nevertheless, had been encoded from prying eyes. He hadn't been prepared to expose his personal affairs with Weir or anyone else, no matter that it was more about hate than love, any caring being the kind where he cared and she didn't, except in his academic rebuttal.
It wasn't like he expected Weir to consider him a true suspect, not to the point of threatening torture. He isn't sure if he should believe they were going to go through with it or not; he'd like to leave that thought alone. But it nags him, itching at the back of his mind, and when he next talks to Simpson, he feels extra anger rise, a venom that he dare care for her at all. It's not her fault, per se, but after what he’s just been through, he’s not capable of being fully rational about it. All he wants, currently, is to cease feeling anything for her, to not put himself anywhere near the position he found himself in – suffering for something that is ultimately worthless. It has been a misguided notion of attachment, one that doesn't really exist, for a relationship that certainly shouldn't needing protecting in the way he attempted to. There's nothing to keep private.
She looks confused by his passing comment, her eyes glancing downward sadly when he looks back. But they quickly flip up again, and she shows a scowl on her face, accusing him of being just the jerk everyone else believes him to be. It's only then he feels a slight pang, because he'd never really appreciated the likelihood that she might think more of him than she was meant to. He tries to let that idea slip away, shakes it off as best he can, because sometimes musings are best left undisturbed, the status quo better than anything else that might seem possible.
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