Summary: Connor gets what he wants, and yet, it's not happy rainbows. Why does the universe torture him so? Abby/Connor angst.
Spoilers: For Episode 2x01 but could be considered a lead in to 2x02
A\N: Betaread by fififolle.
One kiss. He wants to, hasn't he always?
She's standing next to him, but he can feel her turn towards, an air of curiosity with the sudden silence. She touches his shoulder, hand remaining there longer than he would have thought, as she comes round to face him front on.
His lips are open, not for the kiss but the words he must express. This isn't the grand dream of his. There's no date, dinner and a movie. It skips the laughing at his jokes, the place where her teasing becomes flirting and a million other little things he's always on the look out for. Instead it's blind passion, tempting and crushing all at once.
It's wrong. He knows every reason not to lean in and yet he finds she looks like she understands what he means to do, shifting subtly, uncertain, and any other time he'd love that she's not slapped him by now. Except he shouldn't do it. It shouldn't be possible either. Abby's his friend and he long ago learnt that advances in that department were unwanted, inappropriate and treated as tiresome. When had that changed?
One kiss. Getting deeper into the nightmare, losing control. Not that he's one for discipline but it's nice to have the illusion, you know. Nice to have a choice, yes/no, press enter. Cancel if it turns out to be the biggest mistake you'll ever make.
This is just one moment where he's got to resist. It'd be easier if he hadn't subconsciously been resisting for a whole damn year. Still, he has a plan. Think of anything but what his impulses desire. Mantras repeated over and over – maths equations he's never gotten, his favourite quotes, whatever works. He tries to stall his body; he's started going over the opening to Empire Strikes Back in his mind when she closes the distance and they're both in for a heap more trouble.
Ironic that he doesn't even remember it other than the knowledge it happened. The gaps in his imagination are left unfilled, with all those questions – how it would feel to have her pulling him close, fingers on his neck, being close enough to really smell her scent – unanswered. There's nothing. Just a big frustrating blank. After a fearful approach to a kiss he'd never meant, the meaning is now easily dismissed and it's painful to admit he'd hoped that part wouldn't be taken from him.
So, the whole experience is wiped from his memory, which is probably for the best actually – would he really want to remember exactly how the spawn of prehistoric mind control moths transferred? He always hated those scenes from Wrath of Khan; the idea makes his ear tingle uncomfortably. At least these ones weren't deadly.
Abby doesn't understand how she became under the influence until the doctor explains to the team how they think the parasite was passed on. Then she blushes and stammers, looking away – from Stephen. Honest mistake he supposes, no one knows who succumbed first anyhow, the whole team except Jenny were infected. Supposedly her eagle eyes and psychology degree had allowed her to suss out that their behaviour was odd. Cue backup in hazmat suits and the full force of the government resources to cure them, or so they'd been told, it was all hard to recall anything after the very beginning.
Apart from a bad taste and a few tiny scars the only lasting damage comes in the form of a horrendously awkward atmosphere. There are some questions he doesn't want answered, like who gave it to the rest of the team and if there's any other missing memories he's suppressing...
But as he sits on the ARC medical center bed listening to Abby making clumsy conversation with Stephen, around him like he's not there, Connor's stomach plummets. Why? At the realisation some things don't really change despite the fact that the possibility exists. Possibility isn't the same as probability, and there he's struck high enough on this one occasion that chances it'll happen again are shall we say, significantly diminished, and really, there's nothing to prove the risk is worth it. One kiss isn't enough. Time to move on.