REMIX OF: Dance, by taurenova.
RATING: Green Cortina
WORD COUNT: 1100
STYLE/WARNINGS: Het. Sam/Annie. Spoilers through S2.08 of LoM. Dark. Twisty. Set after the end of S1.06.
AUTHORS' NOTES: Beta-read with whip firmly in hand by the fantastic and fabulous usomitai. ♥ :D
SUMMARY: It's been a tough night, and now all they'd like is a quiet dance.
DISCLAIMER: Life on Mars is copyright Kudos and the BBC. No infringement is intended and no money is being made.
SAVE THE LAST DANCE
All things considered, the Gazette gig had gone well. It could have ended quite badly, but it didn't---a fact for which all of CID was grateful. It needn't be said that the members of the Gazette staff were grateful as well; though, of course, no love would ever be lost between Jackie Queen and Gene Hunt. Some might even suspect that there was deeper mischief at work between those two, so ferocious were they in their antagonism. But the thing was, Gene Hunt was nothing if not loyal; to CID, first, but also to his Missus (although he didn't half mouth off otherwise). He was, even now, contemplating the warmth and comfort of snuggling up with one or the other of his two loves and having a nice night’s sleep as he silently pondered the dregs of the scotch he'd switched to over an hour ago at the bar. And then glanced around at his team, who by now were ranged about the Railway Arms in all manners of disarray. Satisfied that they were all safe, he allowed himself to close his eyes, just for a moment.
Before five minutes had passed, he was sound asleep.
Was it the exhilaration of surviving a life-threatening experience that made Annie’s blood pump so forcefully that she was certain she could actually hear it thrumming in her eardrums? She wasn’t completely sure that she cared. They had survived, and much like any other night, they'd found their way to the Arms to celebrate a job well done.
And celebrate some more.
And celebrate more still. It was gone 2, and even Nelson was beginning to look slightly wilted. Nevermind poor, sweet Chris sound asleep at the bar, snoring lightly next to his most recent pint of bitter, hand still clasped around it as though to lift it to his mouth once more even in sleep. Or Gene. Or even Ray, who was piled onto the sleeping Chris’ shoulder like a young and fussy puppy, and drooling about as much.
All the chatter and excitement over a job well done had long since died down, and so Sam decided to make his move. Looking over at her beaming, sunny face one time too many must have finally gave him the courage he needed. Annie saw what was coming even before he did, and her eyes danced in anticipation.
"C'mon with me, Annie," Sam breathed, his voice hitching slightly as he gently guided her down from her stool and into a standing position on the floor in front of him. "I've been thinking a lot about what you said to me earlier, and you're right. It's time I took your advice."
"Which was?" Annie smiled, entwining her hand with his just slightly, worried he'd be able to tell just how long and how hard she'd worked at setting the stage for this exact moment to happen.
"I need to enjoy things more. I spend far too much time worrying and not nearly enough time having fun. Appreciating the important things. Appreciating you," he said, trailing off and saying the last part very quietly.
Annie's heart leapt in her chest. This was exactly what she'd hoped for; she had to stop herself from pinching her own arm to make sure she wasn't dreaming.
"So where are we going? Everything else will be closed by now..." Annie's voice trailed off, hesitantly. Surely her Sam was more of a gentleman than to suggest....
"We're not going anywhere. I just want to dance. With you." Sam smiled in a lazy and catlike fashion as he made a grand, sweeping gesture with his arms. And then pulled Annie quite insistently into the middle of the room, to a cleared area of the Arms that wasn't packed with tables or sleeping members of CID.
Annie smiled, and with it her whole face seemed to light up. She knew Sam could never get enough of her doing it, and that he wouldn't quite be sure whether it was the fact they'd just lived through such a harrowing situation together or all the bitter he'd drunk throughout the course of the evening. In any case, she wasn't at all surprised when he suddenly found himself very eager to tell her just that. "Your face...it does the most wonderful, lovely thing when you smile. It starts with your eyes, your gorgeous, great big eyes...and then your mouth...and I'd swear, even the tips of your hair are smiling by the end." Sam grinned, that painfully endearing grin that absolutely made her go to pieces.
It sounded like a sonnet to her, and she rewarded him by beaming even more radiantly as she put her arm around his waist. He drew her in a bit closer and guided both of them into the dance.
At first, there wasn't any music; then, gradually, a look settled over Sam's face and his eyes went slightly glassy as he began dancing to music only he could hear. Someone who wasn't familiar with Sam might have noticed the glassiness in his eyes and credited it to a late night and a bit too much to drink.
Annie knew better. Her smile widened fractionally as she noted the new look on Sam's face. She was quite certain that all was now going to plan.
She was also very sure that she liked Sam far too much for her own good. She had a tendency to grow attached, she knew...but it hadn't ever been quite like this. Still, she wasn't worried. After all, her friend had given her every confidence that eventually, Sam would never want to be apart from her, and that they'd stay here together. Forever.
Sam settled his head on her shoulder and she nestled into his. As they circled and circled in an endless dance, she waved and mouthed "goodnight" to the already-retreating small blonde girl in the red dress who was pulling the door shut behind her as she left the pub.
It was as though the two of them were completely alone in the world. Adrift. Floating on an endless sea of overwhelming feeling and underwhelming life.
Annie smiled, closed her eyes, and leaned in closer to Sam, savouring what she was quite sure was the first of many such moments to come.