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All my days

Chapter Text

Chapter 1 – I found

 

I'll use you as a warning sign

That if you talk enough sense then you'll lose your mind

And I'll use you as a focal point

So I don't lose sight of what I want

 

The sound of kids playing filled Nicole’s ears as she was making her way to the station, walking near Purgatory’s park, very close to her apartment. She liked to go walking to work, it helped to clear her mind and gave her some energy to face the night shift that she didn’t like so much. Even though she had moved there for almost a year she was still the rookie at the station, which didn’t give her much of a choice.

 

As she was reaching the end of the park and the sound of kids was fainting something caught her attention. A girl was sitting by herself on a bench. She was crying. That scene tore Nicole. She wanted to go talk to the girl, try to help her, but at the same time she didn’t want to intrude. She stopped walking and sat on the curb while she decided what to do. The other woman looked so sad and lost that it broke Nicole’s heart. She ran her right hand through her red hair as she realized that she couldn’t go to work without checking if she could help the girl.

 

Nicole stood up and slowly walked to the other girl, who hasn’t seen her yet. As she was getting closer she could see she was a brunette and how pretty she was, but at the same time, she looked so small, sitting there alone.

 

“Hey there” started Nicole, “can I… Can I help you somehow?”

“Oh, hello Officer” the girl answered while she tried to dry the tears from her face, “I’m fine, thanks”

“Do you need me to call someone?”

The girl shook her head.

Nicole looked at her and it was like the woman would break in front of her any moment now. “Do you want a hug?” Nicole finally asked.

That was it. The brunette started crying out loud as she nod her head. Nicole got closer, embraced the woman and waited for her to calm down. The red hair found herself in an uncomfortable position, as she was neither fully standing up nor sitting, but she wouldn’t say anything. Obviously.

 

The girl slowly calmed down and Nicole decided to brake their embrace and sat on the bench. The brunette hugged herself and took a few deep breaths before she started talking.

“Thank you, Officer. I guess I needed that.”

“Oh, no thanks needed. And my name is Nicole, by the way. Nicole Haught. I’m on uniform but I’m not working yet. I was on my way to, actually.”

“Well, the name suits you very well, Nicole Haught.” She said with a playful smile making the redhead blush. “I’m Waverly Earp.”

“Nice to meet you, Waverly. Do you want to talk about what made you so upset?”

Waverly looked like she was debating between saying everything and running away from her, so Nicole realized she had gone too far. “I’m so sorry, I don’t mean to overstep, we can talk about something else. Or nothing at all, if you prefer.”

“No, it’s fine,” Waverly said, looking in Nicole’s eyes. “the thing is that today is my sister’s birthday and I can’t be with her.”

“Oh, I’m sorry.” Said Nicole.

“Yeah, and the worst part is that I just checked her Facebook page and I think she is married now and have a daughter? I don’t really know…”

“I assume you guys haven’t talked to each other for a while then?”

“No, we haven’t” answered Waverly. “I made a series of unfortunate decisions and now I’m out of her life, forever I think.”

“As much as a cliché it is, life really is full of surprises,” said Nicole, trying to cheer up the other woman “maybe you two can find the way back to each other”.

“I don’t know” answered Waverly, “I said a lot of hurtful things to her, I think she’ll never forgive me. We were close when I was younger. Gosh, if I could just go back in time…”

“I’m sorry, Waverly. I wish I could have a simple solution to give you, but I guess the only thing we can do is learn from our past mistakes.” Nicole said as she unconsciously held Waverly’s hand.

“I guess” Waverly answered sadly.

“Have you tried to talk to her? Maybe calling, or texting her? Who knows, she might pick up.”

“It was my birthday a few days ago and she would have called me if she wanted, but I think she has forgotten me by now. I wouldn’t blame her, I was mean to her the last time we talked.” Waverly took a few deep breaths and then she kept talking. “I think I just want her to like me again, but I don’t know if I can make it happen.”

“Well, you can think about showing her that you are sorry about whatever happened between you two and that you want to do better.”

Waverly just nod, like she didn’t believe she could do such a thing.

“So tell me, Nicole, you are one of Purgatory’s finest. This is nice. My father used to be a cop, too.” She said, changing the subject.

“Yeah, it’s been great so far” she answered.

Nicole realized that they were still holding hands and that Waverly was sitting closer to her and she was tracing small circles with her thumb on the back of the other girl’s hand. It looked like Waverly noticed that, too, because she started talking again.

“I don’t want to make you late for work, Nicole.”

“Ahh, yes, I think I should get going. I’m sorry I wasn’t very helpful to you. I don’t have a lot of family experience.”

“No, no, don’t say that, you were great. If it wasn’t for you, I’d still be here alone, foolishly crying my eyes out.”

“You miss your sister, that is not foolish Waverly,” Nicole said as she was standing up.

“Thank you, Nicole. It was so nice meeting you. Really”

“Likewise. I’ll see you around, Waverly”.

After a few steps, Nicole stopped and said:

“Hey, Waverly?” When the other girl turned around, she continued “Happy belated birthday. I hope you can spend the next one with your sister.”

 

The brunette just smiled and watched Nicole leave. Only if she knew… Did she? Did she know what Waverly’s job was? She probably didn’t know. It was hard to believe that someone would be this nice if they knew that Waverly made sex for a living, that she used to have a brilliant future ahead of her but she’d thrown it all away with stupid choices. Now she was just an ordinary porn actress who didn’t know how to get out of this kind of life.

 

She was glad that she didn’t tell Nicole that she was a porn actress because then she could cherish the feeling of having a real conversation with someone that didn’t involve sex. She could replay their encounter nonstop and maybe that would help her somehow. Even if they never talked to each other ever again, Waverly would keep that moment in her heart for a long time.

 

And I'll use you as a warning sign

That if you talk enough sense then you'll lose your mind

And I found love where it wasn't supposed to be

Right in front of me

Talk some sense to me

 

Amber Run (2015)

Chapter Text

Chapter 2 – All of my days

 

Well I have been searching

All of my days

Many a road, you know

I've been walking on

All of my days

Well I have been quietly standing in the shade

All of my days

 

Waverly slowly woke up to a glimpse of light coming inside of her bedroom. She had a small, but comfortable, one-bedroom apartment downtown in Purgatory. Sometimes she found herself thinking about the Homestead, the house where she had grown up, almost outside the limits of Purgatory. The place was completely empty in the past years since Wynonna left. She couldn’t live there, too many memories of the family that she had lost. Well, neither could Waverly. The younger felt like she was completely alone in the world.

 

It had been a week since her encounter with the very charming Officer Nicole Haught and Waverly had dedicated countless moments thinking about the red head. The woman was so gentle and kind to her, things that she wasn't used to anymore.

 

She had started to study online a few months ago, so she turned on her computer and tried to read some of the assignment that was due to the week but it was hard to focus on something that wasn’t Nicole. Even the ancient languages that fascinated her were not being able to keep her mind steady. What if she went to the park to try to see Nicole again? Maybe the officer used to make the same way every day to work and they could see each other again. Would Nicole even want something like that? It certainly wouldn’t hurt to at least try. And she was too anxious to concentrate on anything else anyway. She quickly chose an outfit that could show she prepared to meet Nicole again but that at the same time didn’t scare the other woman away. Before she even realized, she was already driving to the park.

 

***

Finally, Nicole thought, finally a Sunday when she didn’t have to work the night shift and could just go home at 5 pm. It was getting darker earlier every day that went by. The kids were getting back home sooner; maybe she should start going to work by car. She was going through the park when she had a feeling she was being watched. Her police instincts were blowing and she started to look around. Like a dejavú, Nicole saw Waverly sitting on the same bench as a week ago. It was different this time, though. The brunette wasn’t crying this time. She was like a vision from a dream. A very vivid dream that had been played on Nicole’s mind since they met the other day. Maybe that was a place Waverly liked to be; maybe she didn’t even remember Nicole from the other day. As if a girl like that would waste her time thinking about a rookie like you, she thought. Nicole decided to try her luck and went by closer to where Waverly was and realized the other girl was already looking at her and she was even smiling to the sight of Nicole.

 

“Nicole, hey, I was hoping I could find you again.” Waverly greeted her.

“Hello, Waverly. It’s good to see you. How are you today?”

“I’m better,” said Waverly. “I came here because I wanted to thank you for helping me the other day. You were really sweet.”

“Oh, I’m glad that you are ok.” Nicole said, feeling her cheeks getting warmer.

 

Nicole then sat at the bench and Waverly realized how beautiful the other woman was. Her red hair enlightened her face and she had dimples. She could already feel that she would accept anything Nicole offered her.

“I thought a lot about you these past days” Waverly braved a look into Nicole’s eyes, “if you allow me being this bold.”

“I did, too” Nicole answered with a small grim. She noticed that Waverly was getting closer to her and their hands were almost touching, she had to refrain herself from reaching the other woman’s touch.

Waverly fought the urge to jump Nicole, because she thought about her, too. It seemed that she wasn’t alone in her feelings, so perhaps she should dare a little more and try her luck.

“I’d like to get to know you a little bit if you let me.”

The smile on Nicole’s face put Waverly at ease. It looked like someone gave her some good news.

“I’m nothing extraordinary,” she answered, “I’m from Toronto, actually. I moved here with CJ this year.”

“Is CJ your girlfriend?” Waverly asked, trying to hide her disappointment.

“Oh no, CJ is Calamity Jane. My cat.”

“Your cat? Good. I mean… it’s good that you have a cat, to keep you company. Not that it would be bad if you didn’t have a cat. But it’s good that you do.” Waverly said feeling nervous, like she had just been caught doing something she shouldn’t.

“What about you? What do you do?”

Well, we got to the breaking point pretty soon, Waverly thought. She was shaking a little, but deep down she knew she could trust Nicole.

“I’m an actress”

“How interesting. Did you do something that I might have seen?” Nicole asked, really interested in Waverly’s life.

“I don’t think so,” Waverly said with a small giggle.

“Really? I don’t go to the theater very often but maybe I could have seen…”

“I’m a porn actress” Waverly cut Nicole.

“Oh, that’s… unexpected.” Nicole said after a few seconds. “But it’s good. I guess?”

“You guess?”

“I don’t… I don’t know. Are you ok with that? Because it’s ok if you like it. But you can not like it too, it’s up to you, actually. Damn it, I’m sorry, I’m not making any sense. Sorry. What I mean is that it’s totally up to you, if you like it or not. I didn’t want to insult you.”

“You didn’t,” Waverly said, “I understand that it can be… embarrassing. I wouldn’t blame you if you just stood up and walked away.”

“What? No, no.” Nicole looked a little surprised by Waverly’s words and took the girl’s hand on her own, “as I said, your job it’s up to you and nobody can judge you by what you do. I don’t care, Waverly. Really. You seem a good person, that is all that matters to me.”

“Yeah, it doesn’t usually go like this on my life” Waverly whispered.

“I imagine that people might be mean to you.”

“To say the least.”

 

For the first time in the last few years Waverly found herself enjoying the silence around her because it wasn’t awkward. She felt like there were only them in the world at that moment. Nicole was holding her hand softly and she figured that she would always want her close. She couldn’t force herself on Nicole, though.

“I’m keeping you out of your way again,” Waverly offered Nicole a way out.

“No, don’t worry. I was just going home to feed Calamity Jane.”

“Do you want a ride?” Waverly asked, not ready to let the other woman go yet. “I parked my car just around the corner.”

“No, there is no need for that,” Nicole answered. In the end, she does care about what I do. She is not ok with that and she doesn’t want me around, I knew it, Waverly thought sadly. Nicole noticed that something was wrong because she kept talking. “I don’t need a ride because I live in that apartment building over there.” She said as she pointed to a very close building and then she asked: “would you like to meet CJ?”

Waverly’s face lit up right away and she gave Nicole her biggest smile “I’d like that very much”

They walked together for about two minutes and they arrived at the building front door. Nicole opened it up to Waverly and soon they were inside of Nicole’s place. It wasn’t big, but it was cozy and warm and it felt like home. Just like Nicole, Waverly thought. A red blur of fur walked around Waverly’s legs. She bent down and pet the cat’s ears and it started to purr.

“Well, she likes you already,” Nicole said laughing a little.

 

She was happy, too. It was just the second time she had met Nicole, but everything seemed easy around her. She was confident and she made Waverly feel like that. Maybe, just maybe, things would be alright around Nicole. Maybe her lonely days would be over, it was like she had just found everything she was looking for.

 

 

Now I see clearly

It's you I'm looking for

All of my days

So I'll smile

I know I'll feel this loneliness no more

All of my days

For I look around me

And it seems you found me

And it's coming into sight

As the days keep turning into night

And even breathing feels all right

 

Alexi Murdoch (2006)

Chapter Text

 

Chapter 3 – Areia

 

Quer parar o tempo?

(Do you want to stop the time?)

Natural que seja assim

(Naturally, it would be like this)

Ainda eu não te sei de cor

(I still don’t know you by heart)

Tem tanto que eu não aprendi

(There is so much I haven’t learned)

 

The intercom in Waverly’s apartment was ringing and when she answered Mr. Anderson, the janitor in her building, told her that a red hair woman named Nicole was downstairs waiting for her. She grabbed her purse and a jacket and quickly made her way to meet Nicole. They had agreed on spending the day together as both were free on Saturday. Waverly was feeling a little nervous about spending her day with Nicole. She tried really hard to convince herself that it was not a date. It was just a day out with her new friend. Even if she had spent the whole week thinking about Nicole and imagining how it would be to kiss her soft lips. But she couldn’t do it. She couldn’t allow herself to think about Nicole in that way, because it would put Nicole on a weird spot. They had met just a few weeks ago, but Waverly already realized how important the redhead was for her. She didn’t want to lose her by going too hard.

 

When their eyes cross in the hallway, Waverly couldn’t fight a smile on her face and she decided not to, as she saw one spreading on Nicole’s face as well. Nicole put her arms around Waverly in a hug and the brunette let herself feel all the warmth that came from Nicole. They agreed on going hiking, which was one of Nicole’s favorite activities. At the car, Waverly saw that Nicole had prepared a basket with food so they could have lunch together and it warmed her heart. Nicole was a thoughtful person and Waverly couldn’t be happier to have met her.

 

A couple of hours later, the two of them found themselves almost at the top of the hill they had been climbing.

“Well, this was a little harder than I thought,” admitted Waverly.

“I bet you always take the elevator on that fancy building of yours,” Nicole joked.

“That’s why they invented them. Do you go hiking a lot?”

“Not as much as I used to. When I was in high school, I used to go almost everyday. I slowed down a little at the academy and only did on weekends. I haven’t been able to do it a lot since I moved here to Purgatory.”

“So you were a sports girl in high school?” Waverly asked while she sat on the ground at the top of the mountain, admiring the view.

“Yeah, I played hockey. The hiking and climbing were more like an excuse to get out of my house.” Nicole Answered.

“Bad parents?”

“You can say so,” Nicole chuckled. “I decided that I wanted to become a cop when I was very young and they didn’t like that very much. Surprisingly, they didn’t care that I’m gay, buy being part of the system wasn’t good for me. They weren’t very good for me as a kid either. I spent a lot of time with my uncle when I was a child, but he died when I was 10, so my parents had to take me home with them. I left their house when I started the academy and we haven’t spoken since.”

“I’m sorry that you had to go through that, Nicole.”

“Don’t worry, I don’t miss them all that much anyway. What about you? How is your family?”

“Well,” Waverly started, “my house wasn’t the best in the beginning either. My mom left when I was a baby and I haven’t seen her since then. I have two sisters, but one of them died when she was thirteen, I barely knew her. My dad was the sheriff, but he died in action when I was six. My sister, Wynonna, and I were raised by my uncle and out. He died, too. My aunt worked in a bar and the owner, Shorty, was like a father to me, too. He died last year just like every dad that I had. I haven’t spoken to my sister and my aunt in years, because they don’t like my job and I don’t blame them. Oh, the guy that took place after my dad died, Nedley, he kind of helped me too. I used to be best friends with his daughter.”

“You mean Nedley as Sheriff Nedley? Chrissy’s dad?” Nicole asked intrigued.

“Yes, do you know them?”

“He is my sheriff,” Nicole said amused. “He’s the reason I came to Purgatory in the first place. He personally went to my old precinct to ask my friend Eliza and me to work here. I’m friends with Chrissy and Perry, too.”

“They are still together?” Waverly was curious. “Chrissy and Perry, I mean.”

“Yes, they got married last year.”

“Oh my God, Chrissy is married. How amazing!” Waverly tried to look happy for her old friend, but Nicole noticed that she was a little hurt with the news.

“I’m going to guess, but you probably haven’t talked to her in a while, too,” Nicole said.

Waverly was trying to distract herself because it was hard for her to look at Nicole at that moment. “I stopped talking to everyone from my past, actually. I got into so many arguments with all of them and I said terrible things. No one wanted me to go into the porn industry, so I kicked everybody from my life.”

 

Nicole didn’t want to overstep, but she wished she could help Waverly, so she needed more information. “It’s up to you to tell me and I totally understand if you don’t want to say anything, but why did you become a porn actress?”

 

At that moment, Waverly realized that she would always be afraid of Nicole leaving her behind if they didn’t have that conversation. It would be best if it happened sooner than later and the fact that Nicole was now sitting so close to her and holding her hand was a good sign. “I started my career right after my uncle Curtis died. I didn’t care about anything at that moment and I was drinking a lot. I don’t mean it as an excuse for what I did, but I was a mess. I had a boyfriend back then. Champ. He was really into this kind of job and he said we could be millionaires because we were hot together. The first few movies that I made were with him, so I didn’t mind. The first week was fun, actually. But then I started signing contracts, having scenes with other people, having hardcore scenes and it was like a snowball. I’m so caught in the middle of it that it’s hard to get out. Besides, being a porn actress is not good in your resume, so what am I going to do if I stop being in porn?”

 

“You can do whatever you want, Waverly. Don’t ever think it isn’t worth it to do what you like.”

“It’s easy for you to say, you have your dream job.” Waverly sighed. “I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have said that to you. I’m just frustrated.”

“It’s ok, I get it,” Nicole said, ever so patient. “You feel trapped and it’s hard sometimes to see a way out. But, what do you like to do?”

“I love reading and ancient languages are my favorite. It’s stupid, I know.” “It’s not,” Nicole whispered. “Actually, I started to take online classes last year. Shorty left me some money and I decided that I had to put it in something that would make him proud of me. It’s very interesting.”

“Waverly, that’s great! You are doing something you love, that’s a great step forward.”

“I suppose. I’d love to run his bar someday. My aunt was his business partner, but I heard she had to sell it when he died, it was hard for her to keep in charge of everything on her own. But that’s just a dream, I guess.”

“That’s how we start things, by dreaming about them. We fight for it after that. You have to keep trying.” As Nicole was talking, Waverly could feel the hope and support the red hair was willing to give her. “And you are not alone, Waverly.”

 

It seemed like every word that Nicole said to her would overwhelm Waverly. It was like she wanted to be a part of her life and Waverly couldn’t hide her happiness with that. “You, Nicole Haught, are a great surprise in my life. I don’t know what I did so right to deserve having you around.”

“I’m pretty sure that I’m the lucky one, Waves.”

 

Waverly smiled when her pet name came out of Nicole’s lips and she didn’t stop all day. Talking with Nicole was easy. She was a good person, Waverly could tell. They spent all day on the top of the mountain just chatting and laughing. When they arrived at the car, after deciding it was getting too dark to stay on the mountain, Waverly saw that she had six missed calls from Mercedes.

 

“I’m sorry, Nicole, but I have to call my agent or she’ll go crazy on me.” Waverly walked a few steps and Mercedes picked up quickly.

“Waverly, I’ve been calling you all day, where were you?”

“I’m sorry, I had no sign on the mountain.”

“Mountain? Why? First the vegan thing and now hiking? Are you becoming a hippie?”

“Were you calling to annoy me or were there a real reason?”

“I need to talk to you in person. Can you come to the studious? Like, right now?”

“Is everything alright?

“I’ll explain to you when you get here. Just come. Bye.”

“Alright, bye.” Waverly turned around and saw Nicole sitting in the car, with the door open. “Hey, Nicole, do you mind dropping me at the studious instead? I need to go there to check something.”

“Sure, whatever you need Waverly.”

 

They drove for a while and when they parked, Waverly saw that not only Mercedes was waiting for her, but Jeremy was there too. “Oh, that can’t be good.”

“What? Why?” Nicole sounded worried.

“Mercedes, my agent, asked my friend Jeremy to come too. He only shows up here when it isn’t good news.” Waverly answered and before she could do something Nicole was already out of the car, going to her side to follow her closely.

 

“So that’s why you’ve been missing all day, you found a new ginger for you,” Mercedes said with a big smile.

“Hey guys, this is my friend Nicole. Nicole, these are Mercedes and Jeremy. Mercedes is also my agent.”

Both Mercedes and Jeremy looked intrigued and Jeremy tried to whisper to Waverly “did you tell her that you…” “That I’m a porn actress? Yes, right from the start. I don’t want to keep anything from her” She was looking at Nicole while speaking.

“Oh, I like you already.” Jeremy smiled. “It’s nice to meet you”

“Nice to meet you, too, Jeremy.”

“Yes, yes, it’s good to meet you, Nicole. And you better treat Waverly right or we’ll come for you.” Mercedes looked serious to Nicole, but she softened when she looked to Waverly. “Waves, honey, we need to talk. It’s not that I don’t want you around, Nicole, but we need to talk business. I know you get it.”

“Of course.” Nicole turned to Waverly. “I’ll wait for you in the car, don’t worry.”

 

When Nicole turned around to go back to the car she saw that Waverly looked anxious about the conversation she was about to have. Nicole didn’t know what to do, but she was completely sure that Waverly could lean on her at any moment.

 

She waited for almost half an hour until she saw Waverly walking back to the car. She got in, closed the door but she didn’t say a word.

“Is everything ok?” Nicole was really worried now. Waverly didn’t say anything, she just nodded.

“I know that you’d take me home, but do you think we could go to your place?” Waverly looked like she could cry at any moment. “I don’t want to go to my place now.”

 “Of course, Waverly.”

They drove for like ten minutes in silence when Waverly finally broke it. “Things are not ok.”

“Talk to me, Waverly. I’m here to help you.”

“Mercedes wanted to meet because she wanted to talk about a scene that I’ll have to do this week.” Waverly was holding her tears and trying to speak at the same time. Nicole just encouraged Waverly to keep talking. “This time it’s going to be a scene that I don’t usually do. It’s a… a… threesome and it’s going to be hardcore.”

Nicole didn’t want to look angry, but it was impossible when she saw Waverly trying to hide from her the tears that were on her face. “You don’t need to do something that is going to make you uncomfortable, Waverly.”

“The thing is, Nicole, this time I do.” She snorted a little. “I wanted to make fewer scenes as possible, they gave me the option of one scene a month but at some point, I’d have to do this kind of scene, so I agreed to do it at least once a year. I hate doing it and I feel terrible after that. I get angry and dirty but it’s in my contract, there’s nothing I can do.”

 

Nicole sighed deeply. It was hard to see Waverly suffering like that.

“What can I do? How can I help you, Waverly?”

Waverly looked at her with so much kindness that it melted Nicole’s heart.

“I don’t think there isn’t anything you can do for me, Nicole. But thank you for caring enough to even ask.”

“What if I go to your house after you finish this scene? We could hang out, eat something, distract ourselves.”

“You don’t know what you are suggesting, Nicole. I get unbearable when I get out from work, you don’t want to be around me on those days.” Waverly was heartbroken that Nicole couldn’t take it.

“I want to be around you all the time, Waverly. Please, let me help you. I don’t want you to feel alone.”

 

Waverly didn’t realize, but they had already parked the car and Nicole was holding her hand. She cleared her throat, but her answer went out as a whisper. “Ok. Thank you.”

 

They walked toward the apartment but before they could start going upstairs, two women started talking to Nicole.

“Dude, where were you? We were looking for you?” The blonde was the first to talk.

“Do you want to go Pussy Willows get drunk and go to work hangover tomorrow?” The dark brunette asked with a big smile on her face.

Nicole looked a little embarrassed with the suggestion the other girl made. “Guys, this is my friend Waverly. Waves, these are Eliza and Rosita.”

“Oh, you are the famous Waverly.” Eliza had a playful smile on her face. “Nicole hasn’t shut her mouth about you these past weeks.

“Ahhh, thank you for the offer, girls, but Waverly and I already had plans.”

“You can go if you want,” Waverly was now looking at Nicole. “I’ll call a taxi or something. I can go to my apartment, it’s no big deal.”

“No, no, Waverly. I said we could come, please stay.” Nicole then looked at her friends. “Thanks, guys, but I’ll see you tomorrow at work.”

 

The two women just said their goodbyes and head out. Waverly followed Nicole to her apartment so they could hang out a little bit more before the real world catches up with them. Ever since they met, the brunette felt like she was living someone else’s life, like a fairytale. Nicole amazed her all the time. Waverly was feeling more and more connected to Nicole and she wasn’t sure how she would handle the world without the presence of her favorite officer.

 

 

Tudo no seu tempo

(Everything on its own time)

Tão veloz por dentro

(So fast in the inside)

Em mim passa devagar

(It goes very slow in me)

A me acertar feito areia

(Hitting me like the sand)

 

Areia - Sandy e Lucas Lima - 2018

Chapter Text

I hurt myself today

To see if I still feel

I focus on the pain

The only thing that's real

What have I become

My sweetest friend?

Everyone I know goes away

In the end

 

Of course it was going to rain on the day she was extremely late. Of course she was late because she had to change her clothes after spilling all her coffee on herself. Waverly suspected that maybe, just maybe, it was all because she didn’t want to go to work. She breathed out heavily, there was no back down now.

 

When she arrived at the studious, Waverly found Mercedes already there. It was a blessing to have Mercedes with her all the way through her carrier. She knew that Mercedes and Wynonna were great friends when they were younger, so maybe all the care she had for Waverly was out of respect for her sister. Mercedes looked after her as much as possible in this kind of job and the fact that she could have a very uncommon contract was thanks to her agent.

 

“Hey girl, how are you today?”

“I’d be better at home.” Waverly realized she was being insensible with her agent. “Sorry, it’s not you, it’s me. Hello, Mercedes. I’m glad you’re always here, I promise. It just feels different lately. Working, I mean.”

“Is it because of a certain tall red head that I met this week?”

A small grim showed up on Waverly’s face just by the mention of Nicole. She was hopeless and she knew it. “She does make me see things with a different light, but even before meeting Nicole I was already rethinking my life choices.”

“Ok, I don’t know what to do with this information right now,” Mercedes said, “but you have a long day today, so you should get ready.”

 

She didn’t want to get ready, she wanted to run into Nicole’s arms, feel her hands and see her smile. She felt a bit guilty for thinking about Nicole at that moment. It wasn’t fair with the officer to have those thoughts moments before she was having sex with some random guy. Two, actually. It wasn’t like she would be enjoying the moments with those guys or feel pleasure, but that didn’t stop Waverly from feeling guilty about it. It was like she was cheating on Nicole and they weren’t even together yet. And it’s not like we’ll ever be, she might not want me in the end, Waverly thought.

 

The two guys she was going to share the scene got inside of the dressing room to say hi to Waverly and she decided it was better to stop thinking about Nicole at that moment. She had worked with one of them before, a short guy, and she knew he wasn’t going to be a big problem. The tall one, however, was known because he liked to be aggressive in his scenes.

 

They talked to each other and completely ignored her presence in the room and in the meantime, they took their pills because they needed to last for a long time and it was impossible to do so on their own. Waverly talked to the director and he explained to her how everything was going to happen when the cameras were on.

 

 

 

******************************************************************************************

They started to record the scene by Waverly sitting on the couch and talking to the short guy. In less than a minute of the scene, they were already kissing. His lips felt weird on hers. They were rough and he put too much tongue for her liking. Waverly heard the director telling her to put her hand inside of the man’s pants and start touching his dick and she did so. The tall man entered the scene at that moment and he started kissing her, too.

 

Things escalated very fast and she was already hearing the director cut the scene so they could position themselves and Waverly had to start sucking their hard dicks. She still couldn’t understand how someone could be turned on in a moment like that, with so many people on the outside watching and giving orders. The guys didn’t seem to mind, they were enjoying.

 

Another cut and Waverly found herself with both her wrists tied and the tall guy was slapping and punching her hard, while he tried to force his dick in her mouth. The short man was putting his dick inside her vagina and she wanted to cry. But she couldn’t, she had to keep in her character, fake moaning like she was enjoying that.

 

Another cut from the director so they could change position one more time. Waverly took that time to let loose the braces on her wrists and drink some water. She wanted to be brave enough to run away from those people and that job. On the corner of the room, she saw Mercedes, who gave her a shy smile, trying to help her.

 

She got a couple of minutes to rest, but she was tied up again and this time not only her wrists but her mouth too. The tall guy was now putting his dick inside of her and hitting her with his fists. The short was masturbating around her. Waverly knew that she would have countless marks on her body the next day, so she fought the tears and pretend she was cumming while both men grunted and cummed around her. When the director screamed to cut the scene she got up, put on a robe and walked out of that room.

 

*******************************************************************************************

 

 

Waverly didn’t want to talk to Mercedes or anyone else on those studios at that moment, so she cleaned a bit, changed her clothes and went straight to her car. She let go a deep breath on the moment she realized she was alone. She couldn’t cry. Not yet, not when she was still on that parking lot. She needed to get home first and that is what she did.

 

The rain was still pouring hard on the moment she got inside the garage of her building. A single tear insisted on falling down and Waverly didn’t fight it this time. She grabbed her bag and rushed inside without any noise, she wasn’t in the mood to chat with Mr. Anderson. She left the elevator with her head down and almost didn’t noticed someone sitting on her front door. Almost. She was there, just as she promised. Nicole was waiting for her. Just for her. The look in Nicole’s face had so much affection and tenderness that hit Waverly very fast.

 

Nicole was soon on her feet and going toward Waverly, opening her arms to hold the brunette. They stayed in the hall for a couple of moments when Nicole broke the silence between them. “Let’s go inside, shall we?”

 

The only thing Waverly could do was nod on Nicole’s chest. She was still holding Nicole when the door closed and they could disappear on their own universe, leaving all the bullshit that the world could throw into them outside. Nicole was there to take care of Waverly and that was the only thing that matter at that moment.

 

And you could have it all

My empire of dirt

I will let you down

I will make you hurt

If I could start again

A million miles away

I would keep myself

I would find a way

 

Nine Inch Nails (1994)

Johnny Cash (2002)

Chapter Text

Chapter 5 – Next to me

 

Something about the way that you

Walked into my living room

Casually and confident

Lookin' at the mess I am

But still you, still you want me

Oh, I always let you down

You're shattered on the ground

But still I find you there

Next to me

 

It was hard for Nicole to process what was happening, even if she had prepared herself in advance. She was expecting to find Waverly physically hurt and maybe unease, but she was so much worse than what the officer assumed. When they hugged in the hallway Nicole decided that she would do everything she could to make that a very enjoyable night.

 

“I don’t know your routine when you get home” Nicole tried to comfort Waverly, “but we can do whatever you want.”

“I’d like to take a bath,” Waverly said barely above a whisper, “if you don’t mind.”

“No, no, of course not. I’ll wait for you, don’t worry.”

 

When Waverly disappeared into the bathroom, Nicole rushed to the kitchen. When she planned to go to see Waverly that day, she decided she was going to cook them dinner. She had bought everything she needed because she was afraid Waverly might not have all the ingredients at home. She considered a decent cook, but she was nervous because of her lack of experience in vegan meals.

 

It took her almost half an hour to finish their dinner and Nicole was glad that Waverly decided to take a long bath. The sauce was just ready when she heard some noise outside the kitchen. She found Waverly already in the living room, pouring herself some whiskey.

 

“Would you like some?” Waverly asked.

“Yes, thank you.” Nicole smiled at her while she took a sip from her drink.

“I thought you’d already left.” Waverly was already pouring herself another shot.

“Oh, no.” Nicole frowned because of how strong was her whiskey. “I was making dinner.”

“You are cooking us dinner?” Waverly was wide opened. “Seriously?”

“Sure. I made Vegan Spaghetti Alla Puttanesca.” Nicole looked really proud of herself.

“Oh my God, you are the best.” Waverly put both her hands on her own face, trying to hold back her excitement. She noticed that Nicole was looking at the bruises on her wrists. She tried to hide them, but Nicole stopped the brunette and hold her hand.

“Hey, come here.” Nicole led the way to the couch where her backpack was. She opened it and took the first-aid kit out of it. She left several slight kisses on the bruises before she talked again. “I tend to get hurt at work more often than I’d like to, so after searching a lot, I found this great ointment. You’ll love it.”

 

Waverly gave her a weak smile. She didn’t want to cry again in front of Nicole. She took a few deep breaths and looked at Nicole with teary eyes. “Thank you for being here, Nicole.”

“I’ll stay until you get tired of me and send me away.”

“I don’t think that’s gonna happen.” The smile on her face was a little wider now. “Would you like another drink?”

“Oh no, thank you. I don’t trust myself when I’m drunk and your whiskey is really strong.”

“It’s Wynonna’s favorite.” Waverly poured herself one more shot. “The Earps are known for being good at handling strong whiskey and even better on making bad decisions.” “Don’t say that,” Nicole whispered. “But you don’t fool me, Officer Haught. What is so bad that you could have done while drunk?”

“I got married in Vegas.”

Waverly stopped the glass halfway to her mouth to look at Nicole, but she didn’t see any sign that the red head was joking.

“Wait, you are… are you married?” Waverly stuttered the words because she couldn’t believe it.

“I’m divorced now.” Nicole laughed a little. “It was a bit of shock when we woke up the morning after. Shae and I had friends in common and we went together to a Britney concert. We filled the divorce papers a couple of months later. It was stupid from the start. We tried a little, but it was never going to happen.”

“I would never guess something like that about you. You seem such a goody.” Waverly was sitting very close to Nicole at that moment.

“I used to smoke behind the church when I was 16. Father Matthews hated me.”

“You surprised me, Nicole Haught.”

“Nobody is perfect, Waves. I have my share of bad decisions, too.” Nicole suddenly seemed to remember the food she had prepared. “I think we should have dinner. What do you think?”

“I think that’s a wonderful idea.”

“Well, I can handle myself good enough cooking, but I’m not used to make vegan recipes,” Nicole explained herself when they got to the kitchen. “I plan to though, so if it’s bad, please be honest.”

 

Waverly couldn’t believe how attentive Nicole was. She waited for her, cooked for her and to top everything, it was delicious. They ate and chatted, when they finished they went back to the living room to watch a movie because Waverly was too tired to do anything else. It amazed her that they move in sync so well, like they have been doing that for a long time. They sit together and their sides touched. Waverly laid her head on Nicole’s shoulder, but the officer changed position a little and put her arm around Waverly.

 

Waverly wanted to get even closer and she took advantage of their position, so she sat on Nicole’s lap. The red head didn’t seem to mind, because she held Waverly even closer. She liked their intimacy and how it felt good to just cuddle and watch Ocean’s 8 with Nicole.

 

“You know, I can listen to your brain working,” Nicole whispered. “What is it, Waverly?”

“I’m afraid of hurting you with all the bullshit that is my life,” Waverly said with a sigh.

“Just because you have an unusual job it doesn’t mean your life is bullshit.” Nicole was caressing the skin on Waverly’s arm. “You are not just an actress, Waverly. You are a real person, too. I think you are strong and I admire you. And I like you. A lot. If we have some stones in our path, so be it.”

“Have you watched any of my scenes? I know you haven’t when we met, I mean after that.  It’s totally ok if you did.” Waverly rushed on her speech but she regretted as soon as she spoke. “You know what, you don’t have to answer that, I’m sorry, please forget I said anything.”

“No, I have never seen any of your scenes.” When Nicole answered her voice was calm and sweet but she changed a more provocative tone. “I want to be in the room with you if I ever have the privilege of seeing you like that.”

 

Waverly smiled and her face was now on Nicole’s neck. She breathed her in and before she could stop herself she said, “Do you want to stay here tonight? Just to sleep, I mean. I don’t want to stay alone and I don’t want you to go yet.”

“I’d love too, but I didn’t bring anything to wear or my toothbrush. Or anything, to be honest.”

“I can find something that would fit in you” Waverly was now excited with the possibility of Nicole staying the night. “Please?”

“In that case, yes, I’d like to stay.” Nicole had a full smile on her face.

 

They got up and headed to bed, the movie was long forgotten anyway. Waverly found her biggest t-shirt and shorts to give to Nicole and the red head went to the bathroom to change her clothes. Waverly quickly put on her own pajamas and started pacing in her room without noticing. Nicole appeared and Waverly felt her legs weak. She always thought that Nicole was beautiful, but wearing her clothes that look a little small on her? Oh, that made the butterflies in her gut go crazy.

 

Nicole sensed that Waverly stiffed when she got close, so she took the brunette hands on her own. “I don’t have to stay if you changed your mind.”

 

“I want you to stay.” Waverly entwined their fingers. “But I’m nervous. It’s been a long time since I shared a bed with someone that matters.”

“It’s just me, Waves.”

“You are not just anything, Nicole. We’ve known each other for a short time, but you are already so important to me.”

Nicole put a lock of hair behind Waverly’s ear and kept her hand on the brunette’s face. “You are important to me, too. Let lay down and relax, ok?”

 

They were face to face in bed and Waverly was sure that Nicole could hear her heart beating, because it was so loud. “Hey, Waves? Can I hold your hand?”

“Yeah,” Waverly let go a deep sigh.

“Good night, Waverly.”

“Good night, Nicole.”

 

When Waverly woke up, in the middle of the night, she couldn’t move. There was a strong arm around her, pulling her closer. It took her a few seconds to remember that she was with Nicole. They were spooning and Waverly pressed her back further on Nicole’s front. The red head moved a little but she didn’t wake up fully. “Are you ok, baby?” In her sleep, Nicole let a pet name slip from her lips and after a confirmation from Waverly, she kissed the back of the brunette’s head. Waverly realized how much she enjoyed being around Nicole. She wanted the red head in her life for as long as she could. Waverly held the hands that were on her hips and fell asleep hoping that was just the first of many nights they would spend together.

 

There's something about the way that you

Always see the pretty view

Overlook the blooded mess

Always lookin' effortless

And still you, still you want me

And oh, stupid things I do

I'm far from good, it's true

But still I find you next to me

So thank you

For taking a chance on me

I know it isn't easy

But I hope to be worth it

 

Imagine Dragons - 2017

Chapter Text

Chapter 6 – Oceans

 

I want you

And I always will

I wish I was worth

But I know what you deserve

You know I'd rather drown

Than to go on without you

But you're pulling me down

 

On that day, Waverly felt like a woman with a purpose. I had been a few days since Nicole and she had spent the night together and she missed the presence of the officer in all the other nights. She wanted to do something good for her friend and decided to take the redhead out for dinner. Waverly knew that Nicole would be free soon on that day, so she decided to wait for her outside the station.

 

She was waiting for a couple of minutes when she saw two familiar faces getting out the door. Nedley and Chrissy were walking down the stairs when their eyes crossed with Waverly’s. The brunette couldn’t breathe for a moment and before she realized, the three were side by side.

 

“Chrissy. Nedley. I mean, Sheriff Nedley, hello.” She greeted them with a low voice.

Chrissy looked at her dad and asked him to wait for her in the car. He tipped his hat before leaving the girls alone.

“Hi, Waverly.” The blonde said with a small smile on her face. “I haven’t seen you in years. Are you alright?”

“Yeah, I’m doing fine. How about you? I’ve heard you got married. Congratulations.”

“Thank you. Perry finally proposed.” Chrissy said in a giggle. “I would have invited you but...”

“But I told you to fuck off and not to talk to me anymore.” Waverly interrupted her with a sad smile. “I remember how awful I was to you, Chrissy. Don’t worry, I don’t blame you for not wanting me there.”

“But I did,” Chrissy said in a hurry. “I wanted you there. I blame me for not going after you all these years. You were my best friend and I was so stupid to let you go away from me like that.”

“I’d probably have said even worse things to you, Chrissy. And don’t think that I don’t regret being so horrible to you, I do. You didn’t deserve anything that I’ve said to you. I’m really sorry.”

“I’m sorry, too. I should have stayed by your side. I thought I was looking out for you, that’s it.” Chrissy had a trembling voice. “And I miss you, Waves.”

“Oh, Chrissy, I miss you, too. So much, you have no idea.”

 

Chrissy felt so excited that her friend was not angry with her that she couldn’t keep herself from hugging Waverly. They stayed like that for a few seconds before she spoke again. “Waves, do you think we could try again? Do you think we could be friends again?”

 

It hit Waverly hard. For so long she wanted things to go back the way they were, but she was too afraid to make the first move. A simple coincidence made her cross path once again with her old friend and it was so easy to talk to Chrissy that Waverly regretted not going after her sooner. She couldn’t control her emotions at that moment and her voice went out trembling. “I’d love that, Chrissy.”

“Oh thank goodness.” The blonde started to look for something inside her purse and pulled out a business card that she handed to Waverly. “Please call me, Waves, then we can meet again.”

“Chrissy Nedley, lawyer.” Waverly read. “Congratulations, Chrissy. You deserve it.”

“Thank you. I’ll have to go now, I don’t want to let my Dad waiting so much and I think a certain redhead officer is almost done with her shift anyway.” Chrissy had a playful smile on her face. “She told me that you guys met. I’m glad you did, Waves. She is a good one.”

“She is good, indeed. More than I deserve.”

“Don’t sell yourself so short, Waves. You deserve someone good by your side, you deserve to be happy.”

Waverly couldn’t help but smile at her friend. “I really missed you, Chrissy.”

“I gotta go, but you call me, ok? And do it soon. Bye, Waves.”

“Bye, Chrissy.”

 

Waverly was still astonished by her encounter with Chrissy when she felt a hand on her shoulder. When she turned around, she saw a big and bright smile on Nicole. How could she get this lucky?

“What a nice surprise to see you here, Waves.”

“I didn’t know if I should come, but I wanted to see you.”

“NICOLE!” All of a sudden, they saw Eliza running toward them and she jumped on Nicole’s back. “We got in! Dude, we got in!”

“What are you talking about?” Nicole threw her friend away from her.

“Albany.” Eliza could barely talk with all the excitement she was. “They just released the list and our names are there. You and I, three weeks in the US!”

“Are you serious? That’s amazing!” Nicole hugged her friend tight.

“Let’s go to the bar and celebrate.”

“I’ll see you in a bit.” Nicole turned to Waverly. “I can’t believe I got in.”

“I didn’t understand anything.” Waverly frowned. “But if you are happy, so am I.”

“It’s a forensics program that Eliza and I are trying to get in for two years,” Nicole answered excited. “It’s hard to get in, they only have a few spots for people outside the USA every year.”

“That’s great, Nicole. Congratulations!”

“Thank you. I’m sorry I didn’t tell you before. Honestly, I’ve forgotten about it.”

“Don’t worry about it.” Waverly passed her hands on her dress. “I think I’m gonna go and let you celebrate with your friends.”

“Or you could come with me?” Nicole begged with those big beautiful eyes and those dimples. “Please, I would love to have you with me tonight.”

 

Waverly reluctantly agreed because she didn’t want to intrude Nicole’s night with her friends. When they arrived, they headed to a booth where Rosita and Eliza were already drinking. They chatted for a while and Waverly realized that one of the waiters was checking her out every time he walked past them. She noticed that the other girls saw that, too.

“So, when do you girls leave?” Rosita tried to distract them.

“Next week,” Eliza answered.

“Already?”

“Yeah, it’s a three weeks program.”

The three girls kept talking, but Waverly couldn’t concentrate on what they were saying. Not only the attention the waiter was giving her but also her mind was taking the best of her. She was getting anxious and wanted to get out of there.

“Ladies, I think I’m gonna call it for tonight,” Waverly said already picking up her purse.

“What?” Nicole turned her head quickly. “Why?”

“Mercedes scheduled a meeting early tomorrow, so I don’t want to sleep late.” Waverly clearly made up.

“Alright then.” Nicole pulled out her wallet. “I’ll go with you.”

“No, Nicole, no. You should stay and celebrate with your friends. Don’t worry about me, I’ll go straight home.”

“Are you sure?”

“Of course. Good night, girls.”

 

Waverly walked outside the bar fast and didn’t even realize Nicole was following her until the officer called her name.

“Nicole, you don’t have to go with me, you can stay with Rosita and Eliza.”

“Are you going home because of the waiter?” Nicole worried. “We can ask him to back off. Or we can go to another place, I don’t care.”

“I’m fine, I promise.” Waverly put her right hand on Nicole’s chest. “Go back to your friends, Nicole. You deserve a good night.”

“Are you sure you are ok?”

Waverly stood on the tip of her toes and kissed Nicole on the cheek. “Good night, Nicole. Please don’t worry about me.”

“Ok, good night, Waves. I’ll call you tomorrow.”

 

 

Something wasn’t going down well with Nicole. She had a feeling that Waverly wasn’t being completely honest with her. She hadn’t heard from the brunette in almost two days and that was the longest they hadn’t talked since their second encounter in the park. Nicole didn’t want to push too hard, so she sent a text to her friend.

 

Hey, Waves, do you want to meet for a coffee later today? My shift ends at 5 p.m. xo

 

Nicole was getting nervous and worried about Waverly’s silence. She was thinking that maybe she should have insisted on shoving away the waiter at the bar or maybe she should have taken Waverly home. Either way, she was sure she had screwed up and it was eating her alive.

 

Her shift ended and then the day ended.

 

Still silence.

 

Nicole decided to send another text in the morning.

 

Waves, would you like to have lunch together? I’ve heard about a new vegan place, would you like to give it a try? xo

 

It was almost noon and she had heard nothing from Waverly. Nicole decided to try once more.

 

Hi, Waverly. Did I upset you or did something wrong? I don’t mean to bother you, I just want to know if everything is ok.

 

It was almost 3 p.m. when the light her phone went on and with the corner of her eye, she saw Waverly’s name. She rushed to it and almost drop it on the floor. It was a single text.

 

All fine. Too many things to do today. See you soon.

 

If Nicole was suspicious before, now she was sure something was wrong. Waverly was never this short and she always seemed to like talking to Nicole.

 

When her shift was over, Nicole decided to call Waverly and give it a last check. The phone rang a few times and she was almost giving up when Waverly picked up.

“Hello, Nicole.”

“Hi, Waves.” Nicole suddenly felt nervous. It hadn’t crossed her mind that maybe Waverly didn’t want anything with her anymore and that she was might be a little controlling. “H-how… How are you?”

“Good.”

“Good. I mean… I’m glad you are good. Do you want to come over and, I don’t know, maybe watch a movie?”

It took Waverly a few seconds to answer and Nicole felt like it was an eternity.

“I-I… I don’t think it’s a good idea, Nicole. You see, I’m kind of busy.”

Nicole was convinced that she heard Waverly sniffing.

“Are you mad at me, Waverly?”

“Oh Nicole, no, please, no. It’s not a good day, ok? All I want it’s for you to be happy, ok? I have to go now, I’ll call you, alright? Bye.”

 

Even before Nicole could answer Waverly had hung up, but not before the officer heard crying coming from the brunette. She couldn’t figure out what was going on, but Waverly was not fine. They were not fine. Nicole wanted to go there and help her friend but at the same time, she had a feeling that she was the problem, that maybe Waverly was having second thoughts about them. The only thing she was sure was that Waverly wasn’t telling her what was actually happening. Nicole thought that she was starting to understand Waverly, but now she was more confused than ever.

 

It feels like there's oceans

Between you and me once again

We hide our emotions

Under the surface and try to pretend

But it feels like there's oceans

Between you and me

 

Seafret (2016)

Chapter Text

Chapter 7 – Unbreakable

 

She finds it hard to trust someone

She's heard the words 'cause they've all been sung

She's the girl in the corner

She's the girl nobody loved

But I can't, I can't, can't stop thinking 'bout you everyday

And you can't, you can't, you can't listen to what people say

They don't know you baby

Don't know that you're amazing but I'm here to stay

 

Nicole poured herself what she felt like it was her hundredth cup of coffee of the day because she had a very uneasy night. She couldn’t help but feel nauseous with everything that was going on in her mind. She hated the place Waverly and she was. Nicole was never the one to settle with misunderstanding and she wouldn’t start now. Something had to be done to fix it, to fix them and that’s exactly what she was going to do.

 

When the officer parked, her mind was again on a certain brunette that refused to leave her mind. Nicole crossed the entrance door and looked around. That place seemed a common one, but she knew it was far from it. Even though it was a working spot, she couldn’t help but feel some anger against that building, because she knew that Waverly had hurt some many times inside those walls. When Nicole saw the short and skinny boy and the bold redhead, she called them out loud.

 

“Jeremy! Mercedes!”

 

They turned their heads and walked toward her.

“Hello, Nicole.” Mercedes greeted her. “Waverly is not here right now.”

“I’m not after her,” Nicole answered. “I was hoping I could talk to you two, actually. Have you talked to her recently? She is acting weird around me and I’m not sure why.”

“We talked to her,” Jeremy barely spoke. “But I don’t think we should talk to you about it.”

“Jeremy, honey, why don’t you go on and wait for me in the car. I have some things to talk to Purgatory’s finest.” Mercedes didn’t take her eyes from Nicole.

“I don’t think Waverly would like that, Mercedes.”

“I’ll handle Waverly later.” She now looked at the guy next to her. “You can trust me on this one, don’t worry. Follow me, Nicole.”

They walked inside the studios and Nicole could see a bunch of posters hanging on the walls in the corridor. She saw a couple of those with Waverly on the cover, but she forced herself not to stare at them.

 

“So tell me, Nicole. What do you want to know about Waverly?”

“I want to know what I did to hurt her to the point that she doesn’t want to speak to me anymore,” Nicole said with a shaky voice. “I feel like she is slipping away from me.”

“Jeremy was right, you know? I don’t think Waverly will be very happy with me if she knows that you and I are talking about her.” Mercedes had a mischievous smile on her face. “But I like you, Officer and I think you are good for her.” She pulled a chair and signed it to Nicole to do the same thing. “She has been through a lot. I know that she told you some of it, but a lot more happened. She hasn’t spoken to her family in years and I can see how much it hurts her. Waverly had a boyfriend when she started acting but they broke up soon. That was when she was barely 19 and she hasn’t been in a relationship ever since. Our girl is smart, but she can get lost inside her mind and she usually thinks that it’s her fault that things go wrong. She works with sex, but her heart doesn’t have a lot of experience. She wants to be confident, but she is scared most of the time. She told me you guys went to a bar and she felt uncomfortable there, but I don’t think this is the problem here. I think she’s more worried about these three weeks you’ll stay away and how things will be between you two.”

“Nothing will change, Mercedes. It’s just an opportunity for me to improve my work, but it doesn’t mean I’ll stop caring about her.”

“Oh, I believe you. The thing is, I don’t think Waverly sees things like this. It would be good to remind her about your feelings.”

“Don’t you think I would be intruding too much by going to her place?” Nicole was feeling some hope grow inside her.

“She’ll always like to see your pretty face, I’m sure about it.”

“Thank you, Mercedes. And I don’t mean just for this talk. I can see how much you care about Waverly and I appreciate the fact that you always have her back.”

“She’s a good kid,” Mercedes smiled. “Don’t give up on her, ok? She cares a lot about you, even if she doesn’t say it. Be patient with her.”

“She can count on me, don’t worry.”

 

~~**~~

 

It was hard for Waverly to concentrate on her reading with all the rush that was her mind. A soft knock on her door was a good excuse to let go of her work. She looked through the spyhole and took a step back, frozen. Nicole was on the other side. She took a deep breath before opening the door. Those big brown eyes looked inside of hers and it was like Nicole could see her soul.

 

“Hi, Waves. Can we talk?”

 

Waverly cleared the entrance and they walked into the living room. Nicole looked determined and she didn’t wait for Waverly to invite her to sit, she just did it. The brunette sat right next to her and if she was true to herself, besides her fear, she wanted to sit even closer to the redhead.

 

“I know you said you would call,” Nicole started, “but I’m going to the States in a couple of days and I hate that we are like this and I can’t stay away from you for three weeks without clearing everything up.”

“Gosh, Nicole, I’m so sorry. I shouldn’t have given you a cold shoulder. Shit.”

“Please, don’t be mad at her or me,” Nicole ventured, “but I talked to Mercedes. I was worried about you and you weren’t talking to me, so I decided to give it a try. Waves, I’ll come back from this trip, I promise.”

Waverly stood up and started pacing in the living room. “That’s not it,” she started speaking very fast. “I mean, yes, it is part of it, but not all of it. I’m happy that you have this opportunity, I really am, but then I started thinking about how that would work for us. You were so happy at the bar because of your trip, but what if you were happy to go because it would give you a break from me? Because I know I can be too much most of the time. But then I felt horrible because I know you’re not like that and if something was wrong you would tell me, right? So I started feeling guilty because how would I look at you after thinking that way? I also started thinking about how that waiter was hitting on me at the bar and it was so obvious that he recognized me from my movies. Wouldn’t it be better for you to stay away from me? I know it would, but I’d be devastated and it’s selfish, but I want you around. Then again, what does it says about me? I shouldn’t depend on you, it’s not healthy, I need to rely only on myself, I can’t.. and I…”

“Waverly, Waverly, breathe,” Nicole hold the brunette’s hands trying to slow down the waterfall of words that were coming out her. “Come sit with me.” They sat together and Nicole didn’t break their holding hands to continue. “I want us to communicate, we can’t hold all those feelings inside, it’s not good for us. Can you tell me what scares you the most now?”

“I started pulling away because I’m scared that you’ll forget about me when you are gone, that you’ll realize that life is better without me,” Waverly looked down. “But I know it’s irrational because you’ll be away for only three weeks.”

“I won’t forget you, I can promise you that.” Nicole managed to calm Waverly a little and they were sitting closer. Both of them hadn’t realized how much they missed each other. “It might seem soon, but I can see a future for us.”

“And that scares me too, Nicole. Don’t you see it? I shouldn’t put you on that spot. You are a police officer, what will your colleagues say when they see us together? Hum? Maybe it won’t bother you that I work with porn, maybe you haven’t watched my movies, but I doubt that your friends haven’t. I’m afraid that I will embarrass you in front of them.”

“First of all, there’s no maybe in here. I haven’t watched your movies and it definitely doesn’t bother me that you do them. It will always be up to you if you do them or not. And second, I don’t care about what other people think, I care about you, Waverly.”

“It’s infuriating how steady you are and how childish I am,” Waverly said with a broken laugh. “I hate that I feel so insecure.”

“If you think I don’t feel unsure about things, you are wrong.”

“You look really self-assured to me.”

“But I’m scared, too,” Nicole started. “I’m scared that you’ll think that what I feel is not real. I got married years ago and got divorced soon after, so I’m afraid that you’ll think I’m being superficial with you when things couldn’t be further from that. I know that it might seem fast, but I’m falling so fast and deep for you, Waverly. It terrifies me to think that I can go to strong on you and scare you away because I could be putting too much pressure on you.”

“You’re… you’re falling for me?”

“How couldn’t I, Waves?” Nicole chuckled. “You are smart, funny, sweet. I think you are extraordinary.”

“What if things chance on these three weeks?”

“All I can promise is that I’ll still want you when I’m back.” Nicole realized how much reassurance Waverly needed. “You are a big part of me now, Waverly Earp.”

“Just so you know, I’ll want you too.” Waverly was more ease now. “I wanted you so much these past few days, but I thought I shouldn’t call you because I had been mean to you. I’m sorry.”

“I would kiss you right here and right now if I wasn’t going to be away for weeks in two days.” Nicole took a chance. “I don’t think I can start this and not have you around for that long.”

 

Waverly put her legs above Nicole’s, hold the redhead face with both hands and joined their foreheads. “I don’t think you have any idea of how much you mean to me, Nicole Haught.”

“Will you tell me if I’m going to strong on you?” Nicole worried. “I don’t want to push you away, Waverly.”

“I will. And if I make you uncomfortable, will you tell me?”

“Yes.” Nicole took a deep breath. “You smell like flowers.”

“Well, you smell like vanilla-dipped donuts.”

“I do what now?” Nicole giggled.

“Vanilla-dipped donuts. They are my favorite.” Waverly moved away a little so she could look better at Nicole. “Argh, what am I going to do without you these next three weeks?”

“You will go out with your friends, you’ll concentrate on your school readings. You can do well without me, Waves. Even if you miss me.”

“Yeah, but you are an amazing company, you know.” Waverly put her hand on Nicole’s hair. “Did you know that I talked to Chrissy the other day? She asked me to call her so we could hang out together someday.”

“Waves, that’s awesome!” Nicole kissed her hand. “See, you will be ok even when I’m not around. I want you to be alright all the time.”

“I want that, too. But I’ll miss you a lot.”

“I’ll miss you, too. But we’ll text all the time and there’s always video calls.” Nicole said. “These weeks will go by flying, we won’t even notice.”

“Promise?”

“I promise, beautiful.” Nicole kissed the side of Waverly’s head.

“Would you stay here tonight?” Waverly tried. “I feel like we lost so much with my foolishness.”

 

Nicole just nodded and they both went to sleep. So that’s what it is like to be in a relationship where you matter, Waverly thought as they laid together and Nicole held her in her arms. She felt like they could overcome anything that life threw their way and she really hope she was right on that.

 

You need to know that somebody's there all the time

I'd wait in line, and I hope it shows

I can't walk away 'til your heart knows

That it's beautiful

She stands in the rain, just to hide it all

If you ever turn around

I won't let you fall down now

I swear I'll find your smile and put my arms above you

And make you unbreakable

'Cause I love, I love, I love, I love you darling

 

Jamie Scott (2015)

Chapter Text

Chapter 8 – When I wasn’t watching

 

Where was I when this was going down?

Maybe sleeping in, maybe out of town

Spend a whole life waiting patiently

Convinced it all would come to me

My favorite version of me disappeared

Through longer days and shorter years

So where was I when this was going down?

Assumed the world would come around

What I became

When I wasn't watching

 

When Waverly stepped out of the shower that morning she saw that there were two text messages on her phone. She opened the first one. It was from Nicole. She had been away for almost a week now, but they had been texting every day. This one was a picture of Nicole inside of one of the labs that she was having her classes. Under the picture, she wrote: “I wish you were here, you would have loved it. I miss you, xo”. Waverly quickly typed back: “Have fun and don’t forget to eat like yesterday. Tell Eliza I said hi. I miss you a whole lot, too. xoxo”

 

The second text was from Chrissy. Waverly couldn’t be happier to see that name on the screen. She had reached for her old friend a few days back and they have made plans to have lunch together that day. “Hey Waves, I’m about to leave home, see you at the mall”. Waverly felt as if she was a kid again, going out for the first time with her friend. It was surreal that they were going out together after so many years.

 

Waverly changed her clothes fast and headed to the mall. When she arrived, she saw Chrissy already there waiting for her. The blonde woman threw herself on Waverly as soon as they were close enough to it. “Hey, Waves!”

“It’s good to see you, Chrissy. How’s your dad?” Waverly had a big smile.

“He’s working more than he should, as always. Hey, do you mind if we go for some shopping before we eat?” Chrissy was clearly excited to be around her and there was no way for Waverly to deny her anything at that moment.

“I’d love to,” Waverly answered. “I have all day if you want.”

“Awesome! It’s going to be like the old days!”

 

They went to a few stores before they found themselves in a men store because Chrissy wanted a gift for Perry. The salesman that was helping them was staring at Waverly at any opportunity he had and it didn’t take long to Chrissy realized it. “Do you know him, Waves?” Chrissy asked her while he was a little far from them.

“Ah… no. I don’t know him.”

“Then why he keeps looking at you like that?” Her eyes went wide the second she finished her question with realization. “Is it because… because…”

“Probably, yes.” Waverly tried to whisper. “He had probably watched one of my movies.”

The salesman got closer to them again and asked, “what else can I help you guys with?”

“Ah, yes, I’d like a different salesperson, please.” Chrissy was looking deep inside his eyes.

“What?”

“Chrissy! Don’t do that.”

“No, Waves. I’m doing it.” Chrissy was standing extremely straight and she looked like she could hit the guy at any moment. She realized that the store manager was looking at them. “He was staring at you all the time, it is rude and disrespectful and I won’t have it. You know what? I don’t want a different salesperson anymore. We are leaving and we won’t buy anything from you.” She focused on the manager at that moment “you’ll see a complaint on your webpage very soon. People have to know that they can’t come to this store because the seller will objectify you. Come on, Waves. Let’s get out of here.”

 

They were walking fast when Waverly broke the silence between them. “You didn’t have to do that, Chrissy.”

“Does it happen often?” The blonde girl didn’t seem to have heard Waverly.

“Ah… yes. But they usually don’t say anything, they just stare.” Waverly rushed to explain.

“It doesn’t matter, it’s invasive anyway.”

“We don’t have to stay in the mall, Chrissy. We can go somewhere less crowded if you prefer.” Waverly thought that she could embarrass her friend and it terrified her. “We don’t have to go out if you are not comfortable. We can go back home if you think it’s better.”

“No way. We came here to have fun and that is exactly what we’ll do. And I won’t allow no one to interrupt us.” She held Waverly’s hand. “I’m sorry that you have to deal with this bullshit all the time. But I promise you, your job is not a problem for me. I got so angry years ago because I used to think that we would go to college together and do all that stuff together and I felt like I knew what was best for you, but I know now that I’m not the one who dictates your life.”

“Nowadays I think that I should have listened to you and Wynonna and never have taken this path. It’s like an eternal nightmare that I can’t wake up,” Waverly said with a bitter tone. “Most of the time I feel like I got so far from what I should have been that I became someone else.”

“You haven’t talked to Wynonna all this time, have you?”

“No. I don’t know if she’ll ever forgive me for everything I said to her.”

“You were always the most important person in her life, Waves,” Chrissy said softly. “And I don’t think that would ever change. You should give yourself a second chance.”

“Maybe. Although I doubt that she would want a porn actress around her kid.”

“Waves…” Chrissy started.

“But I want to get out, you know?” Waverly cut her. “I do. But it’s not that easy and I’m not sure about what I’d do for a living and I don’t think I’d be hired for any job having only being a waitress and a porn actress so far in my life. And I don’t know how to look at her when I’m still a failure.”

“You are not a failure, Waverly. And you can do whatever you want. Don’t doubt yourself.”

“Nicole said the same thing,” Waverly smile at the memory.

“Ah, it does sound like her to be supportive,” Chrissy said. “I’m so happy that you two met, Waves.”

“She is really good, yeah.”

“You are pretty good yourself, Waves. I’ll tell you this as many times as you need. I missed you a lot.”

After all those words Waverly couldn’t help but hug her friend. “Thank you, Chrissy. You are too good for me. I’m sorry that I pushed you away.”

“All water under the bridge, alright Waves? Let’s start over.” Chrissy held Waverly by her arm and led them inside the restaurant.

 

The two were having ice cream after their lunch when a guy came close to them. Chrissy was still a little shaken by the invasive man from the store so she was ready to jump and say a few things to this one when Waverly stood up and started talking to him. “Hi, Jeremy. Enjoying your weekend?”

“Hello, Waves. Robin is at work so I decided to go out by myself.” Jeremy answered.

“Come here,” she signed to him. “Jeremy, this is my friend Chrissy. Chrissy, this is Jeremy. We work together. He is Mercedes’s assistant.”

“Nice to meet you, Jeremy. Would you like to sit with us?”

“Oh, I don’t want to bother you girls…”

“You wouldn’t, Jeremy.” Waverly smiled playfully. “Actually, I think you two have a lot in common.”

“Really?” Jeremy asked. “How so?”

“Well… You two are great people, you both love rom-com and Jeremy is dating Robin, who is Chrissy’s ex-boyfriend…”

“Oh, you are dating Robin? He is a sweetheart, I haven’t seen him in like forever.” Chrissy told Jeremy but he was giving her a concerned look. “Don’t worry, we were together only for a few months in high school and it was before he came out. We were just friends by senior year.”

“He really is. I’m happy that I met him. Also, I’m glad that you two didn’t work.” Jeremy giggled.

 

Waverly was feeling like she was flying above the clouds. She was in the mall, hanging out with her friends, joking and laughing. She was amazed about how easy it was to be with them and how they didn’t judge her or tried to bring her down. It was perfect. Well, almost. She was missing Nicole and Wynonna. If they were there Waverly would be the happiest woman in the world. One step at a time, she thought.

 

They were walking slowly through the hall of the mall until a moment they weren’t doing it at all.

“Why did we stop?” Waverly was curiously looking at Chrissy.

“Sorry guys,” the blonde girl answered. “I got a little distracted by this baby clothes store.”

“Is there anything you didn’t tell us, Chrissy?” Waverly found the look in her friend’s eyes very suspicious.

“Well, Perry and I started talking about kids last week,” Chrissy had a big smile on her face. “Since then I can’t stop thinking about that.”

“That’s so sweet,” Jeremy said.

“That’s great news, Chrissy.”

“What about you guys, any thoughts about kids?”

“I think Robin and I will be better as the cool uncles,” Jeremy stated.

 

Waverly didn’t realize, but her mind wandered to a different place at that moment. It was like a vision, where she saw little feet running inside a house and little fingers holding in one hand a brush full of blue paint and in the other a white paper with a very messy painting. Looking deeper at that vision the little kid had very bright red hair and dimples.

 

“What about you, Waves?” Chrissy was suddenly curious about all of that.

“Oh, no. I have never thought about that.” She swallowed a big lump in her throat. “I don’t think that’s something that could happen to me.”

“I know a certain redhead that may have a different point of view about it.” Chrissy humored.

“Yeah, Waves. I’ll agree with Chrissy on this one.”

 

Waverly could only smile at the thought of a mini Nicole running around, grabbing her legs and kissing her face. It was a feeling that warmed her heart, so she decided to keep it inside her as long as possible. Chrissy, Jeremy and Waverly went separate ways at the end of the afternoon and when the brunette arrived home she saw a text from Nicole on her phone.

 

We are done learning for today. I don’t know how you handle to do it for so long, you are my hero. Eliza wants to have some drinks tonight, so wish me luck on keeping her out of trouble. I hope you had a good day. I’ll call you tomorrow, beautiful. xoxo

 

The fact that she had Chrissy back in her life and Nicole caring about her even from afar gave Waverly a new feeling of hope. Her heart was light, bright and it had been a long time since she had felt like this. Maybe not everything was lost after all.

 

A little lost, a little rough

I ask myself, "have you had enough?"

I'll do what's taught to retrace the steps

I haven't even taken yet

The fear of what I'm facing in the mirror

Stops me cold and leaves me here

A little lost, a little rough

The lack of answers all add up

To who we are

When nobody's lookin'

 

Mandy Moore (2019)

Chapter Text

Chapter 9 – Faithfully

 

Highway run

Into the midnight sun

Wheels go 'round and 'round

You're on my mind

Restless hearts

Sleep alone tonight

Sendin' all my love

Along the wire

Right down the line

It's been you and me

 

Waverly jumped out of a much needed 20 minutes shower on the studios. She had just wrapped a scene and desperately wanted to get out of there. It wasn’t as hard as it was on the last time she had a scene, but she had Nicole by her side then and now she didn’t. On that day, the redhead had cooked, held and cared about her. It was very different from how it used to be. Nicole was still away, but Waverly wasn’t willing to go back to the old way she used to deal with her distress. She didn’t want to be completely alone for the next two days, she wanted her friends.

 

She had arranged to meet up with Chrissy and Jeremy at a bar for a few drinks. When she was going through the entrance door she saw Mercedes and Jeremy talking, she was giving him some orders.

“Hey, Mercedes,” Waverly said. “We are going for a few drinks, would you like to join us?”

“Uh, drinks to forget our misery? I’m in.”

 

-----------***-----------

 

They were on their second round of shots when Chrissy arrived. “Hey, you didn’t wait for me!”

“Hi… Sorry, Chrissy,” Waverly greeted her friend. “It was hard to stop them, but I tried my best.”

“Young Nedley. I haven’t seen you in a while.” Mercedes handed her a glass.

“Mercedes Gardner. Good to see you. I’ve heard that you’ve been taking care of Waves all this time. Thank you.”

“No need to thank me,” Mercedes answered. “I kind of like her.”

“I like you too, Mercedes,” Waverly smiled fondly.

 

They continued talking and having fun. Mercedes and Jeremy even started their own competition to see who could take more shots until the end of the night without throwing up. Waverly heard Jeremy complaining about how sad he was that Robin couldn’t be there with them and Mercedes mocking him a little. The brunette watched her friends with lightness in her chest.

 

“How are you, Waves?”

“I’m feeling relieved that I can have you all with me today,” Waverly answered Chrissy, holding her friend’s hand.

“Was it too hard at work?” Chrissy wanted to help her friend, but she didn’t know exactly how.

“I had worst days before,” Waverly laid her head on Chrissy’s shoulder.

“It doesn’t mean it wasn’t bad and you know it,” Chrissy said. “Does drinking help?”

“It used to help, I had two shots but I’m not feeling like drinking much more today,” Waverly said. “I’m sorry if you were hoping to get drunk together.”

“Don’t worry about that I’m just happy that we can spend some time with you again,” Chrissy smiled. “And to be honest, I can’t drink like we used to when we were teenagers. I get drunk too easily nowadays.”

 

It still amazed Waverly how great things were with her old friend at that moment and how sympathetic Chrissy was. She thought that she could never get tired of having the blonde around her but she could be physically tired from the day. They had been at the bar for a couple of hours and she couldn’t wait to get back to her bed. It was hard to believe how drunk Mercedes and Jeremy got in such a short amount of time, so she decided that it was better if she drove both of them back home.

 

After saying their good-byes she headed home by herself. She checked her phone but there weren’t any texts from Nicole. That’s weird, Waverly thought. But maybe the redhead got stuck later in some of the labs they were working. She tried not to worry so much since Nicole would be back in a few days and they would continue from where they stopped. Well, that certainly didn’t help her to calm down. They had talked everyday but Waverly missed feeling Nicole close to her. Her big kind and loving brown eyes, her touch, those dimples.

 

A knock on her door broke her thoughts. It was weird because it was getting late and Mr. Anderson hadn’t called to announce anyone. She was a little worried but when she opened the door, she found Mrs. Thompson, her front door neighbor, outside with an apologetic smile.

 

“Hi, my dear. I’m so sorry to disturb you so late but I could use your help. My grandson installed something new on my TV and I must have done something wrong because I can’t go back to the Food Network. I’ve already lost Ina’s new episode.”

“There is no problem, Mrs. Thompson,” Waverly said.

 

It was very easy to fix Mrs. Thompson's problem and soon enough Waverly was back home. She changed into her pajamas, brushed her teeth and she was close to her bed when another knock on her door interrupted her again. Mrs. Thompson… she thought. She decided to put a smile back on her face instead of complaining.

 

“Hi, beautiful.”

 

Waverly couldn’t believe her eyes. Nicole was right there in front of her. Flesh and bones.

 

“Nicole…” Waverly didn’t control herself and jumped on top of Nicole, almost taking the redhead by surprise. Nicole put her arms around Waverly to steady themselves. “What are you doing here?”

“Eliza messed up our application forms and turned out we couldn’t go to the last two classes. I wanted to make you a surprise so I decided to come home earlier. Mr. Anderson allowed me to come in.”

“I’m so happy to see your face again,” Waverly had a smile that reached both of her ears. She put her feet back on the floor, entwined their fingers and pulled Nicole inside. “Although you look a little tired.”

“I am,” Nicole sighed. “I’ve been traveling all day.”

“You haven’t gone home yet?” They sat together on the couch and they were curled together so tightly that if they weren’t wearing different pants Waverly would never be able to distinguish their legs.

“No. I wanted to see you first,” Nicole said with heart eyes.

 

The air got stuck in the brunette’s throat. Once again Nicole surprised and amazed her. The more they spend time together the more Waverly realized that her brain stopped working around the redhead. She had never experienced anything like that. Nicole was always doing something good for her, being kind and supportive. She should be at home now, resting from her long trip but she decided to see Waverly first because she knew how insecure Waverly was feeling about their distance.

 

As she was always behaving around Nicole, Waverly followed her instincts and not her brain. She moved into Nicole’s personal space and kissed her on the lips. It wasn’t more than a peck and it didn’t last for more than a few seconds but it was enough to clarify a lot of things for Waverly. Nicole’s lips were as soft as she imagined and any doubts that she had about it being the right thing or not completely vanished. She pulled back a little to look at Nicole and a shiver ran under her skin with the vision she had. Nicole had some kind of fire in her eyes as if she wanted that too, but she was waiting for her to make the first move. Waverly opened her mouth to say something, anything, but she forgot how to speak. Nicole didn’t give her much time, though. She captured her lips fast and hunger. Nicole took advantage of her height got on top of the brunette and hold her back with both arms. Waverly had one of her hands on the redhead’s forearm and the other on her hair.

 

It felt like time had completely stopped and it was just the two of them in all earth. Waverly found a way to move and sit on Nicole’s lap without breaking their kiss.

The way that Nicole’s lips pressed on hers made Waverly burn inside. Her heart was beating so fast and so loud that she was sure Nicole could hear it. The brunette slowed down the kiss because her lungs started giving up. She pulled back again but this time she didn’t let go of Nicole’s hair. She opened her eyes and saw something she was sure she would never forget. Nicole still had her eyes closed and a goof smile on her bruised lips. Waverly wished she could frame that vision.

 

“That was… wow.”

“Wow indeed,” Waverly answered.

“Was this ok?” Nicole asked. “I didn’t mean to go so hard on you, but I have been thinking about kissing you for a while now.”

“It was perfect, Nicole.” Waverly was still on top of Nicole, so she was looking down at the officer. “I didn’t mean to attack you like that either.”

“Oh no, you can attack me like that anytime,” Nicole said and Waverly giggled. She leaned down to give her another quick peck. “Oh, I almost forgot…” Nicole kept holding Waverly with her right arm and she buried her left hand in her backpack. She moved her hand inside it, looking for something. When she pulled it out, Waverly saw something wrapped in a rainbow paper. “I bought something for you in Albany.”

 

Waverly saw her own hands shaking while she unwrapped the gift Nicole brought her. She felt her eyes filling up with tears and her heart melting. It was a Harry Potter book, but it was a Latin version. It wasn’t the price of the gift that matter, it was the fact that Nicole listened to her.

 

“I thought that maybe you didn’t have this one yet.”

“Nicole… this is… it’s… amazing.” Waverly kissed her again, but it wasn’t just a peck this time. It was a deep kiss, because if she couldn’t put into words how she felt she could as much show her. The kiss started to heat up and Waverly put her hands on Nicole’s shoulders and started to take out her jacket.

“Waves…Waves, wait… Waverly.” Nicole pushed her gently. “Slow down a little bit.”

“I’m sorry, I don’t mean to… I’m sorry, Nicole.”

“No, Waves… No, baby. Don’t apologize.” Nicole gave her another soft kiss. “I just want to do this in the right way. I don’t want to rush things between us. I can see the long haul for us and I don’t think we should start with the wrong foot. And I’m really tired today.”

“Of course, of course you are tired, you’ve been traveling all day and here I am, ignoring it. I’m so sorry.” Waverly couldn’t control her rambling.

“You have nothing to be sorry about, baby. Besides, I have other plans for us.” Nicole played with Waverly’s hair.

“What kind of plans?”

“Well, we haven’t had our first date yet…”

“Nicole Haught, are you asking me on a date?”

“I am.” The redhead answered softly. “Waverly Earp, would you give me the great honor to go on a date with me?”

“I’d love to.”

“Is tomorrow good for you?”

“Perfect.” Waverly gave her one more peck because Nicole’s lips were like a magnet.

“As much as I would love to stay here and make out with you, I think I should go,” Nicole smiled. “My original plan was only to say hello.”

“It turned out better than that, didn’t it?”

“Definitely. A million times better.”

“You could go home now,” Waverly said boldly while she ran her hands on the redhead’s arms. “Or you could spend the night here. Just so sleep, I promise.”

“It is kind of our thing, right? To lay down together,” Nicole joked. “I missed you a lot when I was away, I think that I’ll sleep instantly if you hold me.”

“So that’s exactly what we’re going to do,” Waverly stood up. “Come on, let’s sleep because tomorrow you’ll have to be well-rested to this date you promised me. And I’ll want to know everything about your trip.”

“Yes, ma’am.”

 

Waverly watched as Nicole was getting ready to go to bed and once again, she thanked the universe for giving her the opportunity to get close to the redhead. That night she swore to herself that she would always do her best so Nicole would always want to be around her.

 

And being apart ain't easy

On this love affair

Two strangers learn

To fall in love again

I get the joy

Of rediscovering you

Oh, girl, you stand by me

I'm forever yours

Faithfully

 

Journey (1983)

Chapter Text

Chapter 10 – Wildfire

 

You think you know all about it

Then it seems you are wrong

As feelings arranged deep down inside

Try describing a love you can't design

More and more, every inch of me is holding on

This is it all the flames are burning strong

 

There were four different dresses, two pairs of jeans, three crop tops and one skirt on Waverly’s bed. She had tried many different combinations of clothes for her date with Nicole, but she was so nervous that nothing seemed good enough.

 

“That’s the one, Waves. You look beautiful.” Chrissy answered Waverly’s countless messages asking help to choose her outfit. Following her friend’s suggestion, she put on a floral dress and comfortable shoes. She had no idea where Nicole was taking her so she wanted to be both relaxed and good-looking. She liked their height difference too, so she didn’t want to spoil that.

 

She heard a knock on her door and froze. Nicole was always so punctual and she didn’t disappoint this time. Waverly checked herself in the mirror one more time before she left the bedroom.

 

“Hi, Nicole.”

“Wow. You look… wow. You are beautiful, Waves. You are stunning.”

“Thank you, Nicole. You look amazing, too.” Nicole was wearing dark jeans and a navy blue shirt with the last buttons opened. Waverly pulled the redhead by the hand so she was inside the apartment. They kissed slowly and with the door opened, but neither of them cared about it.

“I like the start of this night,” Nicole smiled and pressed her forehead against Waverly’s. “I can get used to it very easy.”

“Smooth talker,” Waverly joked and gave Nicole another peck on the lips. “I’ll just grab my purse and then I’m ready.” Waverly tried to walk away but Nicole pulled her closer again and kissed her again. The way Nicole held her and kissed her made Waverly crawl inside her own skin.

“If you keep kissing me like that we’ll never leave this apartment,” Waverly said with a shaky breath.

“That wouldn’t be a terrible idea, don’t you think?”

“I’d love to just stay in with you,” Waverly started, “but I’m actually eager to see what you planned for us tonight.”

Waverly had a youthful smile and a little frown on her forehead that Nicole couldn’t resist so she gave her another peck on the lips. “Ok baby, go grab your purse and let’s go out.”

 

It didn’t take long for them to hit the road. Nicole held Waverly’s hand while she was driving. Once again, the brunette felt like her heart could explode at any moment just by being around Nicole.

“I’m trying not to spoil your plans,” Waverly looked at Nicole who kept her eyes on the road, “but I’m getting anxious. Tell me where we are going. Please!”

 

Nicole giggled a little but she didn’t say anything, she just kept looking to the street. A few seconds later, she found a parking spot and she took it. Still in silence, she jumped outside and to the other side of the car, opening the door to Waverly. The brunette suspected that Nicole would be that kind of gentle, but seeing that happening melted her heart even more if that was even possible. The redhead held her hand and guided her toward a park where several stands were serving food.

 

“Nicole… What is this?”

“I’ve heard they were having a vegan food festival that would take all week. I was planning on taking you on the weekend, but since I came back earlier I thought that we could come in the opening day.” Nicole couldn’t quite read the expression Waverly was making and that put her in an uneasy state. “We can go somewhere else if you prefer…”

 

She couldn’t finish because Waverly was kissing her again. “I loved it.”

“I’ll take that PDA is not a problem for you?” Nicole asked.

“Not for me. You? I should have asked first.”

“No, baby.” Nicole kissed her forehead. “I’m proud to be seen with you. Come on, let’s check our options here.”

 

Waverly was like a kid who was going out for the first time because she looked so joyful and couldn’t stop smiling. It was hard for her to choose what to eat so she accepted Nicole’s suggestion: a little of everything. There were tacos, nachos, salads… the food paradise, as Waverly put.

 

They stayed there for a couple of hours, just eating and listening to live music that was being played there. Nicole had more plans, though. When the redhead suggested the next part of their date Waverly didn’t object, she wanted to see what else Nicole had on her sleeve.

 

They drove again, but this time they headed to the opposite side of town. Waverly shivered because they were taking the same road that led to the Homestead but there was no way Nicole knew that. The brunette relaxed a little when they turned right and they swerved from the road to her old house.

 

“Are we going up to the Tree Hill?” Waverly asked.

“How do you know?” Nicole was taken aback.

“You do realize that I was born in Purgatory, right sweetie?” Waverly didn’t contain her giggles.

“Well, yeah,” Nicole started. “But I didn’t think you would venture yourself in this part of town. You look more like an uptown girl.”

“How dare you, Nicole Haught? I’m officially offended.” Waverly laughed. “I grew up in the countryside if you’d like to know.”

“Sorry babe. I didn’t mean to assume anything. We can go somewhere else if you want?”

“No, I want to know what’s your game here,” Waverly said as she took Nicole’s hand on hers.

 

Nicole didn’t walk the other side of the car when they hopped outside. This time she went to the trunk and pulled out several blankets. “I thought we could sit here and watch the stars. Just the two of us.”

“And what about all these blankets?” Waverly was intrigued.

“I don’t want you to get cold. I know you like more than one blanket.”

 

Waverly put her hands around the redhead’s neck and pulled her for a kiss. It was a little uncomfortable because Nicole was still holding the blankets but she didn’t care.

 

Waverly wanted to help to build the spot where they were going to sit but Nicole refused, she said could handle it. It took her a couple of minutes, but she managed to make it comfy enough to both of them. Waverly sat between Nicole’s legs and the redhead held her tight.

 

“I can hear you thinking, Nicole.” Waverly placed a kiss in the redhead’s chest. “What is it?”

Nicole sighed and held Waverly closer. “It’s something you said back in the car. About me having a game. You know that is not what’s happening here, right? I’m not a player, I’m not messing with you. I’m serious about us.”

 

Waverly moved away from Nicole a little so she could look into her eyes. There was a hint of fear in them. “Oh, Nicole. I know you are. I didn’t mean it like that. Please don’t feel like I don’t trust you, because I do.”

“Are you sure?”

“Completely. It was just a bad choice of words, I promise.”

“Okay,” Nicole let go of a breath she was holding.

“I trusted you on day one,” Waverly put her legs on top of Nicole’s and entwined their hands. “I felt like we were meeting again at the park and not for the first time, you know? And I can see that you care about me, you make me feel things that I never thought I would. I think I’m going too far for a first date, aren’t I?”

“No, babe. You can open up as much as you want. I’ll never judge you.”

“See what you do?” Waverly asked. “You are kind, supportive and you use pet names all the time and I used to hate hearing couples saying them, but I don’t ever want you to stop.”

“I won’t stop until you tell so, baby,” Nicole kissed her slowly.

“I’m serious about us too, ok?” Nicole noticed that Waverly became serious very fast. “So much that I want to tell you how I knew about this place.”

“Waves, you don’t have to say anything you don’t feel comfortable.”

“The thing is, Nicole, I’m always comfortable around you,” Waverly said. “The house where I grew up, the homestead, it’s just a few miles from here. When I was a kid I found Wynonna here once or twice. She used to run away from home when things were too hard. I think she used to come here even after we moved with our aunt and uncle.”

“I had no idea, Waves. If I knew this place would bring bad memories…”

“It doesn’t, actually.”

“No?”

“No.” Waverly laid against Nicole again. “It’s not sad, but it feels like a different life. It’s nostalgia, I think. Things were hard back then too, but I had Wynonna part of the time.”

“Not all the time?” Nicole ran her hand on Waverly’s arm.

“She went away traveling when she was in her early twenties. She came back when I was eighteen.”

“When you started working?”

“Exactly. And then we had our fight and I lost her again.” Waverly sounded sad. “I miss her all the time and this feeling seems stronger now. I wish you two could meet, but at the same time, I know that she would mess with you so much. She would make so many puns with your name.”

“Baby, you are talking like one of you is dead. We can look for her and try to talk to her. I’ll go with you.”

“I know you would,” Waverly tried to smile and dried a tear that was falling on her face. “I’m sorry to bring down the mood of our first date. It’s easy to talk to you about hard things.”

“You can talk to me about everything, Waves.” Nicole kissed her forehead.

“Let’s change the subject, please.” Waverly snuggled more into Nicole. “Tell me why you chose to come to this place tonight.”

“I discovered this hill soon after I arrived in Purgatory and I camped here one night. I haven’t seen so many stars in a long time. I thought that you could teach me some things about them.”

“And why do you think I know anything about stars?”

“Because you are smart and curious and I have a feeling that you know about them,” Nicole said with a confident smile. “Am I wrong?”

“Can you see those that look like two people?” Waverly asked and Nicole just nodded. “Those are Gemini.”

“Ah, I knew you are that smart, babe.”

 

They kept holding each other and before they realized it was late. They decided to gather up everything and go back to town. They parked in front of Waverly’s building. Waverly held Nicole by the hand and led them to the front door, but Nicole stopped walking.

 

“What is going on, Nicole?” The redhead seemed torn and she gave Waverly an embarrassed smile. “You can tell me, sweetie.”

“I can see that you are expecting me to stay the night as we did before,” Nicole blushed, “but ever since I came here the first time I’ve been thinking about this date and how I would kiss you good night here at the front door. It seems silly, I know, but it also feels poetic, don’t you think?”

“You really are full of surprises, aren’t you, Nicole Haught?”

 

Nicole put her arms around Waverly who was already on the first step of the stairs, making them the same height. “I just wanted to give you the perfect first date, like the ones in the book you read, and they always end with a kiss at the front door.”

“You better give that perfect kiss then.” Waverly couldn’t stop smiling, even now that Nicole was kissing her she couldn’t control herself. The redhead held her close, their bodies fitted perfectly and Waverly ran her fingers inside of Nicole's hair, messing with it. It was easy to kiss each other as if they have been doing it for years. When their lungs ached for air they pulled away, but Nicole kept holding Waverly by the waist. Waverly joined their foreheads and held both sides of Nicole's face.

 

“I had a great time today,” Nicole whispered.

“Me too. It was perfect.”

“I can’t wait for us to do it again.” Nicole looked deeply into Waverly's eyes.

“Thinking about a second date already, Officer Haught?”

“Most definitely, Miss Earp. Countless dates, I hope.” Nicole smiled. “Have a good night, Waves.”

“Text me when you get home, ok?” Waverly asked. “Sweet dreams.”

“I’ll definitely dream about you, beautiful,” Nicole said as she walked away, leaving Waverly smitten.

 

The brunette went straight to her bathroom to start her bedtime routine. She put some music on because she was that happy. Waverly started to dance around as Seafret sang loud on the speakers. She felt like a teenager after a first date and somehow it was partly true. It was the first time in many years that she went out on a date and the first time someone cared enough about her to plan a night out with her. Nicole was attentive and thoughtful, she wasn’t just looking for a hook up with a porn actress like the others before.

 

Waverly was sitting on her bed when her cellphone lighted up with a text. It was a picture of Nicole holding a very angry Calamity Jane. “Someone broke my ceramic pot and has the audacity to feel offended when I complained about it. I had a lot of fun today. Have a good night, babe.”

 

A smile spread through Waverly's face. That was going to be a wonderful night indeed.

 

We are bound to each other's hearts

Caught, torn and pulled apart

This love is like wildfire

And to my word now I'll be true

I can't stop this breaking loose

This love is like wildfire

Like wildfire

 

Seafret (2015)

Chapter Text

Chapter 11 - My Attic

 

Inside this olive skin are paper thin

Illusions that I'm tougher than I am

And I'm guarded, castle walls from all the falls

And break up calls and never should've been

I will give you all of my secrets

If you promise you can brave my attic

I'm just terrified that you might see me different

You'll change your mind, tell me that I'm crazy

Tell me that I'm okay, tell me that you'll stay

 

It was a strange day. The sun was shining bright, the birds were singing in perfect tune and Waverly wanted to dance around her apartment. She suspected that a lot of those good things had something to do with a certain redhead officer that refused to leave her mind.

 

Her phone started ringing and she saw Chrissy’s name on it.

“Hi, Chrissy, what’s up?”

“Oh, nothing much, I just dropped my dad at the station after lunch and I saw Officer Haught filling up some papers,” Chrissy said. “That must have been fun criminal stuff because she had a giant smile on her face. Or does that have something to do with your date last night?”

“Maybe…”

“Maybe? Come on, Waves, spit it out!” Chrissy protested. “Tell me everything. How was it? Where did she take you?”

“It was perfect. She’s amazing.” Waverly sighed fondly. “She took me to the vegan food festival and then to watch the stars. Can you believe it?”

“I’m so glad you had fun, Waves. It’s good that you are finally dating someone that appreciates you.”

 

Waverly froze a little with what Chrissy said. Dating? They haven’t talked about dating. Did she want to date Nicole? Of course she did. But what about Nicole? Did she want that too? Waverly certainly couldn’t assume anything.

“We didn’t talk about that, Chrissy.”

“I wouldn’t worry much about it,” Chrissy said. “You’ll have time soon.” Before Waverly could say anything, she realized that someone else was calling.

“Chrissy, Mercedes is calling. I’ll talk to you later, ok?”

“Yeah, no worries Waves. Bye.”

“Hello, Mercedes,” Waverly started her new call.

“Waverly, please tell me you are free on the weekend?”

“What? Why?”

“Because stupid Carl messed up with the pictures from the last photoshoot and manage to delete all of them.” Mercedes complained. “That means you’ll have to stop by on Saturday for new pictures. I don’t think it will take long, but the studios are booking all afternoon for that.”

“Oh, for fuck's sake. Stupid Carl,” Waverly grumbled. “Do I really have to go?”

“Sorry, Waverly. You have to go.”

 

Waverly groaned again. She was reaching her breaking point. She would have to do something soon because she was fed up with all of this. Getting to that realization also brought up the understanding that she would have to find a new jog and her resume wasn’t favoring her. Great, now she was anxious again. Yes, she had to give this some thoughts, but she had something more urgent to do at that moment. She had to talk to Nicole.

 

I took the brunette a couple of hours to build up the courage to go to the police station and talk to Nicole. She watched the people go in and out of the station but finally, she hopped off her red jeep and crossed the front door.

 

“Waverly Earp in my precinct is something I thought wouldn’t happen again,” Nedley said.

“Hello, Sheriff. How are you?”

“I’m doing just fine. Chrissy told me you two are getting back in touch. It makes me happy, kid.”

“She is a good friend,” Waverly replied, “you did a good job with her, Nedley.”

“She’s a good one, my girl Chrissy. She worries too much about me eating salad, though.” Nedley joked. “However, I’m sure you didn’t come here to talk to this old man. If you go inside that door you’ll see Officer Haught at her desk.”

“May I go there and talk to her?”

“Sure, things are going quiet now anyway,” Nedley answered.

“Thank you, Sheriff. Take care, ok?”

“You too, kid. You too.”

 

As Waverly got closer to Nicole's desk she could notice that the redhead was deep in thought on some paperwork, she even had a frown on her forehead. Still, her face softened when she looked up and saw the brunette was standing there.

 

“Hi, Waves, what are you doing here?” Nicole asked and soon she got concerned. “Is everything ok? Did something happen?”

“No, nothing bad happened, don’t worry,” Waverly eased her. “But I needed to talk to you, so I decided to come. I hope I’m not bothering you.”

“You are never a bother,” Nicole smiled. “Come here to the interview room, we can talk better there.”

 

As they were getting to the interviewing room Waverly took a better look at Nicole's outfit. The cop clothing suited Nicole well.

“I like your Officer uniform,” Waverly said.

“Oh, please. You like the khakis? Really?”

“Yes. Your butt looks cute.”

“Ah, don’t try to distract me,” Nicole said as they sat. “You didn’t come here to talk about my butt in the khakis.”

“No, I didn’t,” Waverly sighed with a heavy heart.

“Waves, if there’s something that is worrying you, you can tell me. I’ll help you, no matter what it is.”

“The hard part is that it’s not just one thing, there are two things. Mercedes called me and I think I’m getting crazy inside my mind,” Waverly started to ramble. “I don’t want to upset you but I also don’t want to hide things from you either. I have to work this Saturday and I don’t know how you feel about it.”

“Waves, you have been honest with me since day one,” Nicole held her hands. “Actually, day two at the park. I always knew what your work is and it would be gross hypocrisy and wrong for me to say something against it. Your work is yours to decide, but no matter what you decide to do, you have my full support.”

“So you don’t have any words against it?” Waverly had a shaky voice.

“I do, but not because you are a porn actress. I don’t like it because I can see that you hate it, I can see that you get hurt every time you go to work or even just talk about it. I just want you to be happy, no matter what you work with. You deserve to do something that you enjoy.”

 

Waverly just nodded, because she suspected that Nicole would behave this way, so that wasn’t the hard part. “The second thing is that I’m a little confused about us. What are we, Nicole? I understand that to some people labels don’t matter and they shouldn’t, but I need to know what we are, if we are at the same pace.”

“I’ll say something and we can decide where we go from here. But you don’t have to say it back, ok? You go at your pace and if you ever decide to say it back I’ll be here,” Nicole whispered as she built the courage to speak again. “I’m in love with you, Waverly Earp. I never thought I could feel this much about anyone.”

“You are?” Waverly smiled brightly and put both her hands on Nicole's face.

“I am. And with that being said, I’d like to ask you something: Would you give me the greatest pleasure and be my girlfriend?”

“I like the sound of that,” Waverly kissed Nicole on the lips very light. “And you don’t mind to have a porn actress as a girlfriend.”

“Not at all,” Nicole said. “As long as we are true and respectful with each other, that is all that matters to me.”

“In that case, yes, I’d like to be your girlfriend, Nicole Haught.” Waverly giggled loud and spread kisses all over the redhead’s face. 

“Ok, so would you like to go out as girlfriends for the first time today?” Nicole asked. “I get off work in less than one hour.”

“I’d love that,” Waverly stood up and hugged Nicole. “I’ll way for you outside, in my car.”

***

Waverly watched as Nicole walked toward her car and sighed. She wanted to pinch herself because she didn’t believe her luck. She was officially dating Nicole. Sweet, caring attentive Nicole, who was in love with her and was brave enough to admit that. Waverly felt deep for her too, but it was hard to describe and even harder to say it aloud yet. She just wanted Nicole to be patient enough to wait for her to figure out how to put it all out in words.

 

“Thanks for waiting for me, beautiful,” Nicole kissed her on the lips. “Is there anything special that you would like to do?”

“I thought we could grab something to eat, how does that sound?”

“Perfect to me.”

 

They were walking back to the red jeep after dinner with their bellies happily full. Waverly noticed that Nicole's phone was buzzing and it was making Nicole uncomfortable.

“What is it, sweetie? Is everything alright?”

“Ah, yeah, just fine,” Nicole seemed unsure.

“You don’t sound so great,” Waverly tried again.

“It’s nothing serious,” Nicole turned to Waverly and saw that the brunette wasn’t buying her excuses. "It’s just Eliza. She and Rosita are at the bar watching the game and they invited me. It’s not a big deal anyway.”

“Would you like to go watch the game?” Waverly asked honestly.

“It’s fine, we don’t need to go. I know you are not into sports, baby. I can watch the best moments tomorrow.” Nicole said honestly.

“I can see that you are thinking about me in here, Nicole. I’ll ask and I want you to think about what you want, ok?” Waverly had a playful smile on her lips. “Do you want to watch the game with your friends?”

“The Leafs are playing against the Red Wings…”

“And I assume one of those is your team,” Waverly said.

“The Leafs, yes.”

“So I think we should go and watch the game with the girls,” Waverly said easily.

“Would you be up to it? Are you sure?” Nicole looked conflicted between having fun and not wanting to put Waverly on a weird spot.

“I am definitely up to it. I want you to have fun and do things you like too.”

“Ok, great,” Nicole was like a five-year-old with a dopey smile on her face. “Everybody there will be involved in the game, I promise they won’t bother you this time.”

“I’m not running away from you anymore, ok?” Waverly was serious but decided to joke a little after that. “Let’s go see the Leafs score some touchdowns!”

“Well, ah… It’s a hockey team, baby.”

“Oh, right. What do they score in hockey?”

“Goals,” Nicole said amused of the lack of knowledge her girlfriend had on sports.

 

As soon as they arrived at the bar they saw Eliza and Rosita with their eyes glued on the screen. “There are a lot of people watching the game. Are the Leafs from here?” Waverly was curious.

“No, they’re from Toronto,” Nicole answered. “This bar is where the Leafs’ fans come to watch the games.”

“And which one are they?”

“The Leafs are blue and white and the Red Wings are red and white,” Nicole explained.

 

The first period ended and people at the bar were getting drunker. Eliza and Rosita were some of those people, but Nicole was taking it easier with the alcohol. She saw that Waverly wasn’t having as much fun as everyone else around them.

“We can go as soon as you want, baby.”

Waverly closed her eyes and kissed Nicole. “You are always looking out for me and I want to be by your side, too. I know that it can be an issue for couples when one part likes sports and the other doesn’t. Even my uncle and aunt had arguments about it when I was a kid. I don’t want us to fight because of it, Nicole. So I want you to teach me hockey.”

“You… you want me to teach you hockey?” Nicole couldn’t believe her ears.

“Of course. You love it so much, I want to understand why.”

 

Nicole threw herself on Waverly and held her tight. “You are extraordinary, you know that?”

“Flatter,” Waverly said but she was smiling. “Come on, tell me more about it. I already know that they score goals in hockey and it happens when the black thing goes inside the net.”

The black thing is called puck,” Nicole said. “I think you’ll learn fast.”

 

To everyone’s happiness, the Leafs won the match and Waverly could even enjoy a bit of the game. Nicole explained to her a lot about it and with so much passion that it amazed the brunette. After they left the bar, they moved back to the car and shared a kiss. Much to both of their joy, things started to heat up. Nicole had the softest lips Waverly have ever kissed and she was squeezing Waverly's thigh strongly.

“Nicole, I think this is too much to happen in a car.”

“Sorry Waves,” Nicole tried to breathe normally again. “I got carried away. We can stop.”

“I don’t want to stop,” Waverly said quickly. “I just don’t want our first time to happen in the car. I want you to stay with me tonight, not to drop me off at the door and definitely not to just sleep.”

“Waves…” Nicole was careful. “Are you sure? I don’t want you to feel rushed or obliged to do anything, baby.”

“I am sure, sweetie. I thought about it before and I can wait to be completely yours.”

Nicole kissed her hard one more time before she answered to that. “Let’s go to your place, beautiful.”

Waverly was glad she had the steering wheel to hold because both her hands were shaking. She was eager to know how Nicole would behave in bed because that woman never failed to surprise her.

 

'Cause my attic is silver plans and one night stands

That numbers can't begin to calculate

My attic is up the stairs and waiting there

Are lonely nights, they keep me wide awake

I keep hiding the keys in all these places even I can't find

Hoping, one day, you'll find them all

'Cause I wanna let you see inside my attic

 

Pink (2019)

Chapter Text

Chapter 12 – Can’t look away

 

I knew that we'd be more than friends

When I saw you shining

Somewhere in my heart I knew

I'll never let them break me

I'll never do no wrong

We're on fire, we're on fire

And we're burning up

I keep looking at you and it feels like

I've been staring at the sun, got me hypnotized

Can't look away, can't look away

 

 

In many years working as a porn actress, working in so many awkward situations, Waverly had never felt as nervous as she was at that moment, in her own apartment with her girlfriend. She wanted their first time to be perfect, but she wasn’t sure that she could make that happen. She took a few sips of the whiskey that she had poured herself. She offered some to Nicole, but the redhead denied and now she was staring at Waverly, like she could read her soul.

“Waves, we don’t have to take it any farther if you changed your mind,” Nicole got closer and held the brunette’s hand. “We can just lay down if you want, or I can go home if you prefer.”

“I didn’t change my mind,” Waverly started, “but I am nervous.”

“We care about each other and we respect each other. You don’t have to worry about it, love.”

“Of course I do, Nicole. What if I do something you don’t like? What if things don’t go as you are expecting and you…”

“No, baby, stop, please. Let’s take a few deep breaths, ok?” They did it and Nicole continued talking. “There are no expectations here. We still don’t know what each other likes, but we will with time. Every couple goes through this kind of discoveries. If you do anything I don’t like I’ll say something, the same goes for you. We’ll find our rhythm, love. I have no doubt.”

“How is it that you always know what to say to me?” Waverly asked as she buried her face on Nicole's chest. “There is one more thing: I haven’t done it without cameras in a while.”

“We’ll be ok, Waves,” Nicole had fire in her eyes. Those eyes that were always so kind were now eager. She put her hand inside Waverly's hair and pulled her closer for a deep kiss.

 

When they pulled away to get some air, Waverly started to kiss the exposed skin in the redhead’s neck. Nicole pulled up her girlfriend walked to the bedroom. She laid Waverly gently on the bed and kissed her hard.

“Are you sure, Waves?” Nicole asked looking out for Waverly again.

“Yes, Nicole. My heart is yours, I want my body to be, too.”

The redhead smiled so brightly and then she stood up. Waverly instantly missed her heat, but the vision she had made up for it because Nicole unbuttoned her own shirt and took off her pants in front of her. She lay on top of the brunette and kissed her. Waverly was burning again and she could feel Nicole getting worked up too. She realized she was wearing too many clothes. She pushed Nicole a little and pulled out her top and her jeans. The redhead got closer again and kissed Waverly's jaw. Nicole was everywhere; Waverly could feel her on every part of her skin. The brunette tightened the grip on the red hair that was falling around her with one of her hands. She wanted to open her eyes, but the pressure of Nicole's body over hers made her weak and all she wanted was to feel Nicole's skin under her palm. She knew her nails were sinking on the skin of the redhead’s back, but she didn’t seem to mind.

 

Waverly needed more, but her voice decided to fail completely on her. Nicole was grabbing her hips with one hand and the other was pushing her neck up, so she could have better access to her girlfriend. Waverly felt that both of them were getting wet, because Nicole had one of her legs between Waverly's, putting strong pressure on her middle. Their hips moved together for a while and Nicole sucked the pulse point on Waverly's neck, who bit her lips to suppress a moan.

“Don’t hold back, beautiful, I want to hear and feel all of you,” Nicole started to kiss down on Waverly's chest and she got to her breasts. “Can I?”

Waverly didn’t trust her voice, so she just nodded. Nicole bit her lips with the anticipation and gave Waverly a half-smirk “You are so beautiful, Waves” she then captured one nipple with her mouth and this time Waverly didn’t contain herself.

“Fuck, Nicole,” she moaned.

Nicole sucked hard, placed one hand in Waverly's ass and grabbed it. Waverly gasped and rubbed more against Nicole. The redhead squeezed one of her breasts and the brunette wanted to live on the warmth that came from Nicole.

“You are a tease,” Waverly managed to whisper.

“Don’t you like it?” Nicole kissed her way up until the brunette’s neck again.

“Ah, Nicole.”

“I can stop if you want to…”

“Don’t you dare,” Waverly pulled her girlfriend up and joined their lips again. The way Nicole's tongue moved inside her mouth made Waverly feel like she could never be without it anymore.

 

She felt Nicole's hand going down and touching her in all the right places. As she felt fingers rubbing around her clit, Waverly felt the urge to taste Nicole's skin. She removed the bra that was between them so she could kiss and suck all over Nicole. The room was full of heat and moans and they were absorbed in each other. Waverly put her free hand between the redhead’s legs and got inside Nicole.

“Fuck Waverly, yes.”

They jerked their hips against each other, Waverly felt the grip between her fingers getting tighter, and she knew Nicole was close. She pushed inside the redhead a few more times and a deep moan went out of Nicole's throat. Waverly wished she could frame the vision of Nicole coming around her fingers, breathless. She wanted to savor that moment for longer, but Nicole hadn’t stopped the movements inside Waverly. She moved her hips at the rhythm Nicole was imposing and then she exploded.

“Nicole,” Waverly screamed. That was paradise; she died and went straight to heaven, it was the only explanation possible. Never ever Waverly felt so much pleasure in having sex with someone. Her entire body was on fire and it was like she melted completely. She moaned loud and pushed Nicole's hand even deeper inside her. Nicole captured her lips on a rough kiss.

 

Waverly didn’t know how long they were kissing, but her body wasn’t as weak as minutes ago, so she suspected they were like that for a while. Nicole pulled away from her lips and started to kiss her way down on Waverly again. She stopped between her legs and looked at the brunette, asking for permission. As soon as she nodded, Nicole started licking and sucking her clit. Waverly bent her legs up to give her girlfriend better access and she wasn’t disappointed. Nicole's tongue was hot and strong on her and Waverly couldn’t help but think that this woman would be the death of her.

“Yes, baby, oh fuck,” Waverly was turned on again, so fast that she couldn’t believe it. She ran her hands through the red hair close to her. She wanted to feel Nicole in every way that was possible. The brunette didn’t want to push her hips and pressure Nicole, but it was impossible to contain herself, her girlfriend was really good at that. The redhead kept working on Waverly and squeezing her thighs with both hands. They maintained that pace but the brunette could take it anymore. Nicole could feel that Waverly was close so she speeded her rhythm. Waverly let go of her hair and grabbed the sheets on the bed. Her knuckles were white because of how tight she was holding them. She came again, but she was so breathless that she didn’t say anything, yet a moan came from her throat spontaneously.

 

Nicole climbed up onto Waverly and laid on top of her body. Their eyes were at the same level. Nicole put aside a lock of brown hair from her girlfriend’s face.

“Are you ok, love?”

“I’m amazing. You?”

“Never better,” Nicole had big heart eyes and a floppy smile on her face. She brushed her lips on Waverly's who captured them. The redhead turned them around and held the brunette on her chest.

“Nicole, you have no idea what today means to me,” Waverly had watery eyes. “I’ll never forget it, as long as I breathe.”

“It means the world to me too, Waves. I love you, baby.” Waverly felt a knot on her throat and before she could say anything Nicole kissed her again.

They cuddle and Waverly felt like her eyes were getting heavier. She buried herself on Nicole again and the redhead rubbed her arm and pressed her lips on Waverly's forehead. “Sleep baby, tomorrow is a new day.”

 

--**--

When Waverly woke up, the first thing she noticed was the smell of coffee. The side next to her in bed was empty but she could see the mess that was the blankets. Near her, there was a big cup that she suspected was the source of the delicious smell she was sensing. Nicole walked out of the bathroom and she had already a big smile on her face.

“Good morning, beautiful. Did you sleep well?”

“Like an angel,” Waverly answered, “but I doubt that I look resembling anything close to beautiful right now.”

“You are the most beautiful woman I have ever seen. And right now, more than ever, Waves,” Nicole got closer and gave Waverly a peck. “Any plans for today?”

“I have some reading to do, but nothing hard,” Waverly said. Nicole lay back in bed and Waverly cuddle in her instantly. She couldn’t remember the last time she felt this happy before meeting Nicole. Even with all that joy in her chest, she noticed something was missing and she exactly what it was. “Nicole, I have something that I want to talk to you about.”

“Anything, Waverly.”

“I’ve been thinking these past few days, I mean really thinking and… I think I want to talk to Wynonna again.”

“What, are you serious?” Nicole looked amazed. “Baby, that’s amazing! I’m so proud of you, Waves.”

“Thank you, sweetie. I have two things I need to ask you.” When Nicole nodded Waverly continued. “The first is: would you go with me? I don’t think I’m brave enough to go alone.”

“Of course I’ll go with you, Waverly.”

“That’s a relief,” Waverly sighed and giggled. “The second thing is a little more serious. I don’t know where exactly Wynonna is living. Can you look for it in the police database?”

“I’ll see what I can do,” Nicole smirked. “I don’t think it’s going to be a big problem, tho.”

“Ah, you are the best, thank you,” Waverly kissed all over Nicole's face.

“I’ll ask Nedley a few days off so we can go see Wynonna,” the redhead said. “Everything will be just fine, baby, I’m sure.”

“I hope you’re right,” Waverly mourned.

“We’ll be there together, no matter what happens,” Nicole held Waverly in a tight hug.

Waverly wished she had all of the confidence Nicole was showing her, but she still didn’t feel like that. She hoped her girlfriend’s tenacity was enough for both of them at least for a while.

 

 

Now the grip is tightening

Gonna keep on fighting

Somewhere in my heart I know

Somewhere in my heart

All the love you gave me

You know it made me strong

Feeling alive, now back to life

I know where I belong

 

Seafret (2018)

Chapter Text

Chapter 13 – Landslide

 

I took my love and I took it down

I climbed a mountain and I turned around

And I saw my reflection in the snow-covered hills

Till the landslide brought me down

 

A sharp sting made Waverly take her finger out from her mouth. She had bit down seven of her nails without any consequences but the eighth was now bleeding. She couldn’t still the nervousness and the anxiety within her heart. She sighed loudly and immediately long fingers intertwined with hers. Nicole took one of her hands from the steering wheel and held hers.

“Do you want to play a road game, baby?” Nicole asked without taking her eyes from the road. “Maybe it will distract you a little.”

“I’m sorry Nicole, but I don’t think I’ll be able to get distracted with anything,” Waverly said. “And I don’t know I want it either.”

“I think we should talk about it then,” the redhead replied. “We don’t want you to overthink about it. How does that sound?”

“Maybe it is a good idea.”

“You know what, you never told me exactly what happened between you and Wynonna,” Nicole went on. “I mean, I know you guys fought about your career, but never the whole ordeal.”

Waverly groaned sadly and her mind wandered back in time, to a life that felt foreign to her.

 

 

Waverly was folding her clothes when she heard the noise of a motorbike coming from the window. She picked up the bottle from her bedside table and drank the rest of the whiskey that was in it. Looking outside, she saw that it was Wynonna. She sighed, closed the bag that was on her bed and walked outside her room.

 

“Are you fucking serious, baby girl?” Wynonna seemed impatient already.

“Wynonna, it’s my life. I think I can decide about it,” Waverly replied.

“Do you have any idea how many gross men are going to jerk off watching you?” Wynonna was almost screaming.

“I don’t know if you are aware of this, but I’m not going to be in the same room as them,” Waverly said ironically. “I’ll be just with Champ and we’ll get some good money from this and it’s temporary, so what’s the big deal?”

“That big asshole, I’m gonna kill him,” Wynonna paced around the living room. “He’s poisoning your mind.”

“Don’t talk about him like that. And I can think for myself, thank you very much.”

“Aren’t you going to say anything about this?” Wynonna asked directly to Gus, who was standing in the corner of the room.

Waverly interrupted Gus before she could even open her mouth. “She made everything clear already. I’m not welcome here anymore.”

“You’ll always be welcome here, Waverly,” Gus said. “We just don’t want you to waste your life in a rushed decision. You can have a great future.”

“And I will! Can’t you two just understand that I’m going to do that because it’s easy and fast money? We are going to work on this for a year and then we’ll have the cash to do what we want.”

“Oh, your big plan is to screw up everything and throw your life away? Do you think people will respect you, Waverly? Do you call this work?” Wynonna spilled out. “To be so drunk that you don’t realize that all of this is a big mistake? That’s your move here?”

“Oh, so you are the only one that can be drunk around here, Wynonna?”

“Yes, Waverly. Can’t you use my mistakes as an example? Your life can be so much better, baby girl.”

“You don’t even have a job and you think you can tell me what to do? Do you think you are the one to talk? Look at yourself, Wynonna." Waverly had fire in her eyes and she looked disgusted by her sister. "Besides what do you know about my life? Ah, Wynonna?” Waverly exploded. “You left me. Just like everyone. When I needed you the most you decided to get away from here and leave me behind. You abandoned me, I was alone and I wanted my sister but you chose to do what was best just for you. I spent years without any kind of news from you. Only with Curtis’s death, you showed up and even then you decided not to stick around again. I know you just came to get your heritage and then you’ll run one more time. With that you don’t get to rule what happens with my life now; you lost your chance to say whatever you want in the matter.”

“Baby girl, please. I think you drank more than you should have and you are going to regret the things you are saying now,” Wynonna tried to soothe her approach. “You know I had to leave, that I couldn’t be here in Purgatory anymore. What if we talk more about this tomorrow, ah? You rest today and clear your mind and we decide what to do.”

“Don’t try to say that I’m too drunk to decide what I want,” Waverly replied still annoyed. “If you had to go and leave me when I was a child, now it’s my decision. Don’t get in my way.”

“You are making a mistake, Waverly.” At the same time Wynonna spoke, they heard a car arriving in front of Gus’s house and Waverly knew it was Champ.

“Why don’t you do what you do best, Wynonna, and leave me the hell alone. You left me once, I don’t think you’ll find it hard to do it again. You don’t agree with me so I think we don’t have anything else to talk about.” Waverly looked at her sister and then turned to her aunt. “I’ll come back to collect the rest of my stuff tomorrow. Thank you for your support, both of you.”

The younger girl was walking out the door when a hand grabbed her wrist. She turned around and saw Wynonna with tears in her eyes. “I love you, baby girl and I always will. I’m sorry I let you down before, but please, don’t throw your life away.”

“Let me go, Wynonna. And don’t come after me if all you’ll do is just repeat yourself.”

 

 

Nicole took a deep breath and stopped the car. She looked at Waverly and didn’t know exactly what to say.

“Do you understand now why I doubt she will ever talk to me again?” Waverly asked her girlfriend. “I was so mean and cruel to her. I don’t think Wynonna will ever forgive me. How could I do that to her?”

“She was fighting for you, Waves…” Nicole tried.

“But that was years ago,” the brunette interrupted, looking at Nicole. “Since then she had a baby and started a completely different life. If she didn’t want me to work with this before I fear she won’t want me around her kid. How hypocrite am I to ask her forgiveness when I didn’t do it for her when she tried? I think I am better without knowing if she would accept me or not. I can’t endure Wynonna kicking me out as I did to her. Let’s turn around and go back to Purgatory before we get to her house.”

“It’s too late for that, beautiful,” Nicole gave her a shy smile. “Sorry baby, but we’re already here.”

“What?” Waverly gasped.

“According to my search, her house is this white one,” Nicole held her hand.

 

Waverly turned her face to the place Nicole was referring to and saw a tall dark brunette in a leather jacket. Even just seeing her back, there was no doubt she was Wynonna. It looked like she was gardening, which was something unexpected. A lot changed and I missed it all, Waverly thought.

“Is that Wynonna?” Nicole asked and Waverly only nodded. She had a lump in her throat and just wanted to cry. The redhead kissed her girlfriend’s shaking hands. “You can do this, Waves. You made a mistake in the past and you want to fix it now. I know it scares you, but think how would you feel to have come this far and then give up? You’ll hate yourself, love. You are so strong and you deserve to have your sister back in your life, you deserve meeting your niece.  I’ll be here no matter what happens.”

 

Waverly sighed deeply, gave a peck on Nicole's lips, opened the door and got out of the car. There were only a few meters of distance from her sister. Every step felt like it was one thousand because her legs felt so heavy. Wynonna was distracted with some flowers she was planting and she didn’t see Waverly behind her back, only a couple of meters from her. There was no running back now, she had to face the consequences of years of silence and misunderstanding. That was the moment she had pictured so many times she had lost count. Waverly took a deep breath before jumping out of the cliff.

 

“Hello, Wynonna.”

 

 

 

Oh, mirror in the sky, what is love?

Can the child within my heart rise above?

Can I sail through the changing ocean tides?

Can I handle the seasons of my life?

But time makes you bolder even children get older

I'm getting older too

 

Fleetwood Mac (1975)

Dixie Chicks (2002)

Chapter Text

Chapter 14 – Dark four door

 

You got up, you felt you should

I keep tryin' to tell myself I would've done the same had I could

I never thought that you would

But we became the eye of the storm

You took off from that outdoor platform

 

Wynonna froze. She was kneeling on the ground, dealing with the flowers, both hands covered in mud. Even if she hadn’t said anything yet, Waverly knew she had been heard. The older sister slowly stood up and turned around. Their eyes crossed for a few seconds and then Waverly couldn’t see or breathe anymore. She couldn’t breathe because Wynonna held her so tight she was squishing her lungs. She couldn’t see because her sister’s dark brown hair was all over her face. “Baby girl, you are here!” Wynonna pulled out from the hug and put her hands on both sides of Waverly's face, leaving her cover in mud, but she didn’t care, because her sister had teary eyes and a big smile on her lips. “I can’t believe it.”

“I’m sorry, Wynonna,” Waverly tried to hold on but she didn’t manage to and started to cry. “I’m so, so sorry. I wish I could go back in time and change everything. I’m sorry.”

“Hey, come here, baby girl,” Wynonna pulled Waverly closer as the younger girl couldn’t control her sobbing. “You are here now, we’ll fix it. Whatever it is we’ll fix it.”

“Can you forgive me?” Waverly dried her tears and had begging eyes. “I know I hurt you a lot and I was mean to you. Can you give me a second chance?”

“I think we should talk before we decide anything, right?” Wynonna had a shy smile on her face. “Let’s go inside to talk, ok? There’s a tall redhead leaning against the hood of a car that is staring at us.”

Waverly turned around her face to see Nicole with both hands inside her pockets. “That is my girlfriend, Nicole Haught.”

“Hot? Really? Does she work with you?”

Waverly knew Wynonna wouldn’t take it easy on her, but if she wanted to make it work she had to bear with her sour comments. “It’s H-A-U-G-H-T, actually. And she is a police officer. She helped me find you.”

“Oh, that’s interesting,” Wynonna looked taken aback. “Does she know you… you…”

“That I am a porn actress?” Waverly asked. “Yes, she knows since the beginning, but it’s not a problem to her.”

“Let’s invite her in, then.” The brunette waved to her girlfriend and Nicole walked toward them. “So you are the girlfriend, ah?”

“Nicole Haught,” she said reaching out her hand so Wynonna could shake it. “It’s nice to meet you.”

“You too, Haught. Let’s get in, there’s someone I want you to meet, baby girl.”

 

When they walked through the door, Waverly saw a simple house with white walls, a green couch, and a coffee table. They passed straight through the living room and headed to the kitchen. She wanted to pay attention to the room, but it was impossible because as soon as Waverly got in, her eyes were caught in a little girl who was trying to place together a puzzle.

“Hey, Bug. There is someone here I want you to meet,” Wynonna said placing a hand on her daughter’s shoulder. “This is your aunt Waverly. Waves, this is Alice.”

“Hello, Alice,” Waverly lowered herself so she could look the little girl in the eyes. “I’m very happy to finally meet you. You look like a wonderful lady.”

“I saw your picture, Auntie Waverly,” Alice said if big eyes and it scared Waverly of how much she looked like Wynonna. “Can you do puzzles?”

“Your aunt is very smart, Bug, but now I need to talk to her, you guys can play later, ok?” Wynonna interrupted. “This other lady is your aunt’s girlfriend, Haught, so why don’t you show her your car collection? I think she’ll like it.”

“Oh, yes, they are so cool.” Alice turned fast to face Nicole. She was excited and clapped her hands.

“I’d love to see them, Alice,” Nicole smiled. “Show me the way.”

“They are outside, come on!”

 

Waverly grinned with the vision of her girlfriend and her niece holding hands. “She is a wonderful girl, Wynonna. You’re doing a good job.”

“It’s not easy, I’ll tell you that. I was gardening because she decided she wants flowers in the freaking winter. I couldn’t convince her to make her dad do it,” Wynonna sat by the table and signed Waverly to do the same. “She’s too smart for me, just like you were when we were kids.”

Suddenly a tall man came inside the kitchen.

“Oh, I didn’t know we had visitors,” he said.

“Dolls, this is Waverly, my sister,” Wynonna replied.

“Waverly, really? Wow, it’s good to finally meet you,” Dolls had fast eyes and studied Waverly carefully. “Wynonna talks about you since the day we met.”

“It’s nice to meet you too, Dolls,” Waverly seemed a little embarrassed. “I hope we can get to know each other better.”

Dolls just nodded and looked at Wynonna. “Alice?”

“Outside, with Waverly's girlfriend.”

He excused himself and walked out, leaving the sisters alone again.

“Is he Alice’s dad?” Waverly was curious.

“Kind of.”

“Kind of?”

“Well, he isn’t her biological father, but she calls him dad. Her other father is Doc, remember him?” Wynonna studied Waverly's reaction and the younger sister just nodded. “We all live here, together.”

“So, are you with Doc or Dolls?”

“It’s a little more complicated than that and not very conventional,” Wynonna replied. “Unlike you and Red, I suppose?”

“We haven’t been together for long,” Waverly smiled, “but I know we will. She’s been pushing me to come to talk to you since we met.”

“Then why didn’t you?”

“Because I was so scared that you wouldn’t forgive me for how mean and cruel I was to you,” Waverly got nervous again. “I’m so sorry, Wynonna. You were right all the time and I should have listened to you.”

“The last time we talked you seemed to think I don’t love you,” Wynonna whispered. “You acted like I left just to hurt you and not because I was hurt back then.”

“I was hurt, indeed, but I shouldn’t have taken it on you the way I did,” Waverly tried. “I know that growing up wasn’t easy for you either and I was selfish.”

“You were a drunk jerk, that’s for sure,” Wynonna stated.

“I was a jerk, yes. But I wasn’t too drunk to decide things,” Waverly knew she couldn’t soften things. “You were the best thing that I have had all my life and I was horrible to you.”

“I just want you to know that I was never out of love for you, Waverly.”

“I get it,” Waverly said. “I thought that the plan I had was strong and I would only save some easy money for college, but I was wrong.”

“But you are still working with porn, aren’t you?” Wynonna challenged and Waverly just nodded.

“It’s not easy to get out with all the contracts that I signed,” the younger looked down. “I’ll understand if you don’t want me around you or your family. I’ll go away if that’s what you want.”

“No fucking way, baby girl,” Wynonna got closer to her sister and held her hands. “You are my family, too, and I already spent too long away from you. And I’m sorry too. I should have run after you when you left.”

“I told you not to…”

“Yeah, but since when do I listen to other people, huh?” The woman changed from teasing to a more serious tone. “I was never angry with you, baby girl. I was scared that you would get hurt.”

“You were right and I should have listened to you,” Waverly mourned.

“All I wanted was for you to be happy, Waverly.”

“I understand it now,” she replied. “I came here hoping that we could maybe get closer again.”

“I’ll always want you close to me, baby girl. A lot of things happen these past few years, tho. It’s not going to be so simple, I suppose.”

“I don’t care,” Waverly said fast. “I’ll do whatever I have to if it means that I can be a part of your life again.”

“Come here, you big baby,” Wynonna signed and Waverly moved closer and got inside her arms for a tight hug. The younger sister knew it could be hard for her to find her place back in her sister’s life, but she took the first step and she wouldn’t go back now that she was exactly where she wanted to be for so long. “No more tears, ok baby girl? Are you guys staying for a while or you have to go back to Purgatory already?”

“I don’t know, I’ll have to talk to Nicole. I wasn’t sure if we would need more days because I didn’t know if you would talk to me.”

“Let’s go talk to her then. It’s almost Christmas and I want to spend this one with my sister after so many years.”

 

--**--

 

“This blue one Daddy gave me and the last one Mom and Dad gave me my last birthday,” Alice said as she showed Nicole all her tadpoles.

“They are so cool, Alice,” the redhead answered. “You are very smart. I bet you have lots of friends at school.”

“No. The kids in Kindergarten think I’m weird cause I have two Daddys.”

“Well, I think you are pretty cool and I’ll make sure I’ll bring you a car the next time I come visit you,” Nicole tried to cheer up the girl.

“Oh, can I have a blue beetle?” As soon as Nicole nodded Alice asked again. “Is your name hot because you love hotdogs?”

“No, my surname is Haught, but my name is Nicole.”

“Did you clean all your cars, honey?” A tall man sat next to Nicole. “I’m Dolls, Alice’s dad.”

“Nicole Haught, Waverly's girlfriend.”

“Nicole is going to give me a blue beetle, Dad!”

“I offered,” Nicole mentioned before Dolls could even say anything.

“In that case, we say thank you, right Alice?”

“Yes, thank you, Nicole,” the little girl turned her face to the street as she heard a car approaching. “Daddy is home!” A man with a full-grown mustache hugged the girl when she jumped into his arms. He kissed her on her face making the girl giggle.

“Well, hello there,” he smiled. “I think we haven’t met before.”

“Doc, this is Nicole Haught. She is Waverly's girlfriend.”

“Really?” He seemed surprised as he shook hands with Nicole. “That means Miss Waverly is at our house at this very moment?”

“Flash and bones, Doc,” Waverly said as she walked outside with Wynonna next to her.

“Ah, Waverly Earp. What a delightful vision to my eyes.”

“It’s good to see you too, Doc.”

“Everybody come inside, Waverly has something to talk about with her girlfriend,” Wynonna said and a smile popped up on her face as she saw Waverly walking toward Nicole and receiving a kiss on the top of her head from the redhead.

“How was it, beautiful?”

“It was surprisingly easy,” Waverly replied. “She still doesn’t like my job, but I know it’s because she wants to protect me. It will take some time to get back from where we were, but she wants me around. She even invited us to stay and spend Christmas with them. Can you believe it?”

“That’s amazing, baby!” Nicole kissed her softly. “I’m so proud of you.”

“Can you call Nedley and ask him if you can spend Christmas here, too? I don’t want to spend it away from you.”

“There’s no need for that,” Nicole said with a goofy smile. “I’m free until the 27th.”

“What? You already asked for that?” Waverly asked and her eyes were wide open. “You were expecting this to happen?”

“Of course I was Waves. From all you said about Wynonna, I knew she loved you too much to let you go away again.”

“You are amazing, did you know that? I’m so lucky.” Waverly held Nicole tight by the waist.

“I’m pretty sure that I’m the lucky one because I get the chance to spend Christmas with the woman I love and her family,” Nicole kissed her forehead. “It’s going to be perfect, Waves. I’m sure.”

 

Waverly sighed deeply. A satisfied sigh. She felt deep inside that it was a moment of change in her life. She couldn’t go back to Purgatory and have things the way they were. Everyone around her was being supportive and showing her that they love her. At that moment, Waverly felt strong enough to go after better things and look for happiness in every aspect of her life. Nicole's confidence was spreading on her after all.

 

 

And you went east 'cause it's easy

Don't mind if you leave me as long as you come back home

So I went south to define me and someday you'll find me

No different than I was before

Until then I'm still lookin' for you in every dark four door

 

Billy Raffoul (2017)

Chapter Text

Chapter 15 – I am here

 

I open up my heart

You can love me or not

There's no such thing as sin

Let it all come right in

I wanna make some mistakes, I wanna sleep in the mud

I wanna swim in the flood, I wanna fuck 'til I'm done

I like whiskey on ice, I like sun in my eyes

I wanna burn it all down, so let's start a fire

 

Waverly got into the living room feeling refresh from a shower. Christmas had finally arrived and she was going to spend it with her family. If that wasn’t enough to warm her heart, the scene she was currently watching finished the job. Nicole was lifting Alice so the little girl could place a star on top of the Christmas tree. From the kitchen, she heard Dolls and Wynonna discussing the food. Nicole sat next to her on the couch as Alice and Doc got distracted talking about the plate full of cookies and carrots.

“Are you having fun, sweetie?”

“I am,” Nicole replied. “Alice is so smart, she’s a lot like her auntie. You, on the other hand, look worried. What is it, baby?”

“Wynonna just told me that Gus is coming for dinner tonight,” Waverly played with Nicole's knuckles.

“We’ll be ready for however she reacts to our presence here,” Nicole put a lock of hair behind her ear.

“Please, you two are going to make me barf,” Wynonna said sitting with them.

“Yecks, Mama,” Alice said with a twisted face. “Auntie Waverly, do you want to finish the puzzle before dinner?”

“Sure I want, kid.”

 

The pair ran fast to Alice’s room and Doc subtly headed to the kitchen, leaving Wynonna and Nicole alone.

“So, Haught-shot, what’s your game here?”

“My game? Is this the big sister talk? I was waiting for it.” Nicole joked around.

“I’m serious here, Nicole. Don’t mess with me,” Wynonna spilled. “What are you doing here, ah? You are a police officer, she is a porn actress. Is this some kind of fetish of yours? Because if you leave my baby girl heartbroken here I promise I’ll kill you.”

“It’s not a fetish, Wynonna. I love her.”

“Ew. Also, you better,” Wynonna still had a humorless face. “I know I haven’t been around lately, but I care a lot about her. If she gets hurt, it’s your end.”

“We are playing in the same team here, Earp,” Nicole stated seriously. “All I want is for Waverly to be happy.”

“I don’t expect anything less from you. If you walk out of line I’ll be on your neck, Haught-shit.”

“Haught-shit, really?” Nicole tried to mock Wynonna. “Is that the best you have? I’ve heard this one many times before.”

“I have more in my sleeve, Haught-to-trot, just wait to see it.”

 

Before Nicole could say anything else, the doorbell rang. Waverly showed up breathless.

“It’s Gus,” she said. “I saw her from the window.”

“Here we go,” Wynonna said and marched to the door. She opened it and Gus entered. She was carrying a big package wrapped in colorful paper.

“Alice, I think Santa left one of your gifts at my house and…” and then she saw Waverly. The air was stuck in her lungs and suddenly she forgot what she was saying. “Waverly…”

“Hey, Gus,” Waverly was nervous. She wasn’t aware of anyone in the room, just her aunt.

“You finally came into your senses, ah?”

“It took me some time,” Waverly felt like she could throw up at any moment. “I’m sorry, Gus.”

“You said some pretty nasty things to your sister and me,” Gus tried to balance Alice’s gift in one hand.

“I know,” the brunette took a deep breath. “I came looking for forgiveness and to ask for a place back in your lives.”

“Are you ok with that?” Gus asked Wynonna.

“Yes. I want baby girl back around,” the older sister said simply.

“Alright, then,” Gus said and looked Waverly in the eyes. “We’ll still have a talk tonight, you and I, miss.” She then turned to the little girl holding her mom’s leg. “Alice, I believe Santa forgot one of your gifts at my house. I think it might be a big truck!”

“Thank you, Grandma,” the little girl said walking away from the grown-ups in the room.

“No problem, kiddo,” Gus searched the room and saw Nicole. “I don’t think we’ve met.”

“This is Nicole, my girlfriend,” Waverly entwined their arms.

“It’s nice to meet you, Mrs. McCready,” Nicole reached out to shake hands with the older woman.

“Girlfriend, ah? What do you work with?”

“I’m a police officer, ma’am,” Nicole was standing straight, being proud of who she is. Gus eyed Waverly like she was checking if everything was fine.

“She knows what my job is, Gus,” Waverly answered the unspoken question.

“I know that I’m a visitor here and you guys have a lot of history and baggage to talk about but I’d like to say something because I feel like if I don’t, I’ll have the same conversation over and over again.” Nicole had everyone’s attention. “I care about Waverly and her job is not an issue for me. It’s not a fetish or anything. What happened is that I fell in love with her because she is extraordinary. My only goal here is to make her happy.”

“You finally pick the smart one, baby girl,” Wynonna said and Waverly held her girlfriend tight. Gus just smiled at her niece and her girlfriend.

“Well, if we all understand each other, can we please have dinner?” Dolls asked.

“You’re a wise man, Dolls,” Doc went after Alice and headed with her to the kitchen.

 

Waverly was going right after Nicole when she felt Gus’s hand holding her by the wrist. She looked back and then to her girlfriend. The redhead just nodded and continued on her way.

“I just want another word with you, Waverly. We all screwed up and I want you to know that I’m sorry for the way it all turned out.”

“Gus, I know how awful I was to you and Wynonna…”

“I played my part in this, too,” Gus interrupted. “I should have fought more for you.”

“You did what you thought was best,” Waverly said, “and I was too naïve to think that stupid plan would work. I’m still working on porn, but I’m doing my best to get out. I’m even studying with the money Shorty left me, I have some money saved and I think you’ll like what I’ll do with it.”

“It makes me truly happy, Waverly.”

“I promise you the same thing I did to Wynonna: I’ll do my best to win back your trust.”

“Come here,” Gus put her arms around Waverly and kissed the back of her head. “You’ve always been a smart kid. And you found quite a good pair for you, I must say.”

“She’s great, I’m really lucky,” Waverly smiled widely.

“Come on, you two!” Wynonna screamed from the kitchen.

“Yeah, come on,” Alice copied her mother.

 

They found a real feast waiting for them. Nicole and Waverly were surprised at how wonderful of a chef Dolls was. They ate and drank until they felt like their bellies were about to explode. After dinner, they all headed to the living room because Alice swore she had heard Santa going down the chimney. Doc smile to himself considering he was able to hide all the presents until the last minute and now the little girl was sure Santa Claus had stopped by their house.

 

When everyone got distracted, Nicole pulled Waverly outside so they could have a private conversation at the porch. She was holding a paper bag and Waverly was looking anxious.

“Nicole Haught, you did not buy me a Christmas gift after we clearly agreed on not buying gifts to each other.”

“Waves, listen to me…”

“No, Nicole,” Waverly interrupted. “I didn’t buy you anything because we said we wouldn’t. Now you have something to me and I’m the worst girlfriend ever.”

“Hear me out, ok love?” Nicole asked her girlfriend, who was biting the inside of her cheek. “Let’s not think about this as a Christmas gift, but like a congratulations for your bravery, I’m proud of you gift. I’d have bought this for you even if it wasn’t Christmas. The reason I did it is cause I’m so proud of you for coming here to talk to your family, facing your mistakes and being a better person.”

“You are astonishing,” Waverly said amazed. “Well, since you bought it, let me see it!”

 

She opened the package and found a beautiful red and white frame that could be filled with two pictures.

“It’s symbolic, actually,” the redhead started. “I thought that you could take a picture with Wynonna and Alice and place this frame at your apartment.”

“Which picture I’ll put on the second space?” The brunette had teary eyes.

“I thought that you could put a picture of us,” Nicole was a little shy.

“I loved it, thank you,” Waverly kissed her fiercely.

“Ah, stop it, you two. How many times will I have to see it?” Wynonna showed up at the door.

“You could stop walking on us all the time, Earp,” Nicole replied without letting Waverly go.

“You think you’re funny, don’t you Haught-dog?” Wynonna said. “Alice is asking for you, something about one of her Christmas gifts.”

 

As soon as they crossed the door, Alice ran toward them. “Nicole, look! Santa gave me a blue beetle.”

“Oh no, he beat me,” Nicole faked surprise with the gift she had bought the little girl. “I think I’ll have to buy you a red Alfa Romeo next time.”

“Yes, that’s exactly what I thought,” the little girl sighed.

“She is just like you, Wynonna,” Waverly said as both sisters walked alone into the kitchen.

“She’s a handful, I’ll tell you that.” The older woman commented. “Is everything alright between you and red? You two alone outside…”

“Perfect. She was giving me a very thoughtful gift. She said she’s proud of me for reaching out for you.”

“Oh my God,” Wynonna faked a puke. “That woman is like walking bumper sticker.”

“Don’t talk about her like that,” Waverly put on an annoyed face.

“I’m happy for you, baby girl.”

“Me too.” Waverly looked deeply at her sister. “Wynonna, have you ever thought about going back to Purgatory? To the homestead?”

“I didn’t have anything left back there, you know.”

“But now you do, right? We’re moving on from our fight,” Waverly tried. “You could go back to the homestead and I would go with you, we could rebuild it. I know it’s complicated now that you have a family, but you and Dolls are bounty hunters, you can do that in Purgatory. Also, I have a proposal for Doc if you decide to go. There are good schools for Alice.”

“I’d love to be closer to you, baby girl, but things are not so simple anymore. But I promise I’ll think about it, ok?”

 

Waverly got closer and held her sister in a tight hug. Maybe she could have Wynonna back for real and constantly. She was going to take pictures that night and have them all in her apartment and hopefully soon enough at the homestead. She wouldn’t need any more Christmas gifts for the rest of her life.

 

I am here, I am here

I've already seen the bottom, so there's nothing to fear

I know that I'll be ready when the devil is near

I am here, I am here

All of this wrong, but I'm still right here

I don't have the answers, but the question is clear

 

Pink (2017)

Chapter Text

Chapter 16 – Walk me home

 

Tryna stand up on my own two feet

This conversation ain't comin' easily

Walk me home in the dead of night

I can't be alone with all that's on my mind

So say you'll stay with me tonight

'Cause there is so much wrong going on outside

 

The car was already laden and it was time to say goodbye. It wasn’t a sad farewell this time, it was an I see you soon kind of goodbye.

“Thank you so much for having us these days, guys,” Waverly said to Dolls and Doc.

“It’s great having you, Waverly.”

“You can consider Dolls’ words as mine, Miss Waverly,” Doc agreed.

“Tell me something, Doc: how is your bar doing?” Waverly tried to hide her excitement.

“It has seen better days,” Doc answered. “Can I ask you why the sudden interest in my bust business?”

“I have some ideas for the future,” she said. “But I’ll have to wait for some other decisions to be made. But I’ll tell you soon if everything works out.”

The brunette hugged both men, even with some protest. She walked over her sister and niece who were saying goodbye to Nicole.

“You be respectful to my sister, Haught Pocket, or I’ll hunt you down.”

“I always am, Wynonna. You don’t have to worry about it.”

“Give her a break, Wynonna,” Waverly approached them.

“She can take it, baby girl.”

“Auntie Waverly, when will I see you again?” Alice asked.

“Soon, my darling,” Waverly kneeled to hug the little girl. “Very soon.”

“I will miss you.”

“We’ll miss you too, kid,” Nicole kneeled too. “But don’t worry, the next time we see each other I’ll have that Alfa Romeo waiting for you.”

“You are the best, Nicole!” The girl jumped at the redhead.

Waverly stood up, put her arms around Wynonna and held her in a tight hug. “I’m going to miss you so much, Wynonna.”

“Me too, baby girl. But now we’ll call each other, text, video call and everything else the tech genius invents.”

“Will you think about I suggested at Christmas?” Waverly whispered in Wynonna’s ear, so only her sister could hear.

“I’m already doing that, baby girl,” Wynonna caressed her sister’s cheek. “We won’t ever grow apart again, Waves.”

 

They said their last goodbyes and jumped in the car. Waverly couldn’t believe her luck. Even after all the crap she had brought to her family and friends forgave her and gave her a second chance.

“You’ve been awfully quiet since we left,” Nicole started. “Is everything alright, baby?”

“Yes, but I’m going to miss them.”

“I’ll miss them too, love. But we’ll see them soon and talk even sooner.”

“I know, I know. There’s something I want to tell you,” when Nicole nodded the brunette continued. “I invited Wynonna to move back to the Homestead.”

“Oh, that is so cool, Waves. What did she say?”

“She said she needs to think,” Waverly answered. “It’s not easy anymore, with Alice and the guys, but I suppose she’s interested. It would be so good to live with her again.”

“Oh, so you are thinking about moving there with them?”

“Yes, just like old times,” Waverly said. “Why? Do you think this is a mistake?”

“Not at all, Waves. You all are going to enjoy this experience,” Nicole replied. “I hope they decide to come to Purgatory.”

“There is one more thing,” she took a deep breath and glanced Nicole who had the eyes glued on the road. “I decided that I’m not going to be a porn actress anymore.”

“Wait are you serious?” Nicole's eyes showed joy.

“I am. As soon as we arrive in Purgatory I’ll start all the transactions. When the new year starts I’m no longer going to work in porn.”

“And what is your plan?” Nicole was curious.

“Well, I’m going to talk to Mercedes, I know she’ll help me with the studios. I will finish my graduation and after that, I’m going to try to find a job in that area. Maybe I can work at a museum or translate books,” she looked at her girlfriend and joked around, “can you hold back on your excitement a little bit?”

“Not even a tiny bit,” the redhead replied with a dimpled smile. “You decided to move over from a job that you hate, that hurts you a lot and makes you sad to something that you actually care about. I’m not just excited about it, I’m proud of your strength.”

“You are too good to me,” Waverly touched her girlfriend’s thigh. “I could never have done any of these without you.”

“Of course you could, Waves. I haven’t done anything here, it was all you,” Nicole venture a quick look at her girlfriend.

“You have been supportive and loving since the beginning,” Waverly tried again. “You helped me find my courage.”

“Well, I’m happy that I could be such a positive supporter,” the redhead led her girlfriend’s hand to her mouth and kissed it. “I don’t want to rush you, but I think you’ll need to find a lawyer to help you with all that.”

“Yeah, I agree with you. And I know exactly who I’m going to hire,” Waverly said with an intriguing smile.

 

--**--

 

“I am so curious about you going to spend Christmas with Wynonna. Tell me everything, Waves.”

“It was better than I hoped, Chrissy,” Waverly said as the friends sat at a booth at the café. “We’ll be ok, I’m sure. Oh, and Alice is the sweetest.”

“I’m so happy for you, Waves,” Chrissy took a sip from her coffee.

“I am, too,” the brunette said. “I wanted to talk to you about a different thing, tho. I want to talk to you professionally, as a lawyer.”

“Whatever you need, Waves. Is everything ok?”

“Wonderful,” the brunette smiled. “I want to hire you because I want to break my contract with the studios. I no longer want to work as a porn actress.”

“Did Wynonna or anyone else asked you to do it?” Chrissy asked.

“No, no. They were all cool about it. I have been thinking about it for a while and I think it’s time.”

“Well, I’m honored you chose me to help you with that,” Chrissy held the brunette’s hand over the table.

“Why do I always arrive at emotional moments?” Mercedes approached the booth and sat next to Chrissy. “Merry belated Christmas Waverly and Nedley Junior. Did you want to talk to me, Waves?”

“Yes, because you are my manager,” she started carefully. “and I want to break my contract with the studios.”

“Ok, so we are talking about retirement,” Mercedes smiled. “And why is Chrissy here?”

“I hired her as my lawyer.”

“Alright then. I don’t think it’s going to be easy, but we’ll find a solution.”

“Thank you, Mercedes. I know it’s not good for your business, but I can’t do it anymore.”

“Do you know why I became your manager when you got rid of Champ the chump, Waves?” The brunette just shook her head. “Because Gus asked me to. She wanted me to take care of you, her words, not mine. That’s what I’m doing all this time. I’m happy that you are leaving this job.”

“Thank you for everything you have been doing for me all over the years, Mercedes,” Waverly fought the tears that started to grow in her eyes.

“Is there anything specific that you’d like from this contract break up, Waves?” Chrissy jumped in.

“I have some money saved and I’d love to keep it. Oh, and my apartment, too. It would be really good to still have it once everything is over.”

“We’ll do our best, but keep your mind open to losing some money,” Chrissy sounded serious.

“I trust you two, but please don’t let me go bankrupt,” Waverly begged.

“I’ll have a word with the big boss at the studios, don’t worry about it,” Mercedes settled.

 

That gave Waverly a feeling of relieve. Both Chrissy and Mercedes were willing to help her and it was liberating. She had to talk to Nicole and tell her all the good news. She left her friends at the café because they said they could handle it and they didn’t want Waverly to be personally involved in the matter. She drove to Nicole's and knocked on her door.

“Hi, baby,” Nicole kissed her and held her. “Come in. Eliza is here and we were thinking about having some drinks.”

“Hi, Waverly. How are you?”

“Good, good. I don’t want to bother you two,” Waverly looked at Nicole.

“You are never a bother, baby. Have a seat, I’ll prepare something for us very quickly,” the redhead showed her dimples and went to the kitchen, leaving the other two alone.

“Seriously, Eliza, I don’t want to get in the way,” Waverly tried again. “Nicole didn’t know I was coming. I can leave if you prefer.”

“Relax, Waverly,” Eliza said. “We weren’t doing anything important, just chatting. It will be good to have you here. And if you guys want privacy I can go.”

“No way. Nicole loves you and I’m sure she wants you around all the time.”

“You are good to her, you know?” Eliza smiled. “I know her for a long time and I’ve never seen her happier than now that you are around.”

“Really?” Waverly didn’t even try to hide her excitement.

“Yeah, I can see that she really loves you, Waverly Earp. I’m glad you two found each other.”

“She’s super important to me, too.”

“Nicole tries to be strong for everybody, to be everyone’s rock,” Eliza sounded more serious. “But she’s soft. She would hate me to ask you that, but I have to look out for her. I like you, Waverly but please don’t hurt my friend, ok? Be honest with her all the time and don’t break her heart. She loves you too much to recover from it.”

“I’ll do my best to always be good to her,” Waverly promised.

“I’m sorry for saying that to you,” the blonde apologized. “Her family is not around and I like to think of me as a sister to her.”

“Don’t worry about it, I think my sister had the same conversation with her,” Waverly smiled fondly. “And I’m positive that she thinks about you as a sister, too.”

“Are you telling lies to my girlfriend, Shapiro?”

“I’m just telling her how bad of a loser you are, remember Josh Stuart?” Eliza drank some of the beer Nicole had just brought from the kitchen.

“Oh come on, Josh Stuart was an idiot who always cheated in everything we did,” Nicole looked right at Waverly. “I’m not a bad loser if you play by the rules. Stuart is the worst kind of cop ever.”

“I have more academy stories if you want to hear, Waverly.”

“Oh, I’d love to,” the brunette replied.

“Seriously, Eliza? You’re going to make up bad things now?”

“I’ll just tell her some of your embarrassing yet memorable moments, Haught,” the blonde smiled.

“Don’t worry, baby,” Waverly gave a peck on Nicole's lips. “I won’t think about you any different, I promise. Eliza, tell me everything.”

 

They ate and drank all night and Waverly was sure she would never get tired of hearing stories about her girlfriend.

 

 

 

There's something in the way I wanna cry

That makes me think we'll make it out alive

So come on and show me how we're good

I think that we could do some good

Walk me home in the dead of night

I can't be alone with all that's on my mind

 

Pink (2019)

Chapter Text

Chapter 17 – Halo

Remember those walls I built?

Well, baby, they're tumbling down

And they didn't even put up a fight

They didn't even make up a sound

I found a way to let you in

But I never really had a doubt

Standing in the light of your halo

I got my angel now

It's like I've been awakened

Every rule I had you breaking

It's the risk that I'm taking

I ain't never gonna shut you out

Everywhere I'm looking now

I'm surrounded by your embrace

Baby, I can see your halo

You know you're my saving grace

 

The loud buzz coming from her phone was extremely annoying and Waverly couldn’t imagine who would call her at 7 am. She almost turned it off when she saw it was an unknown number, but decided against it cause if they had the audacity to call her awfully early they could handle her bad mood as well.

“What?” Waverly grumbled.

“Waverly? Is that you?” She thought she recognized the mysterious voice but she couldn’t quite know for sure.

“Yes, what do you want? Who is it?”

“Waverly, this is Rosita. I’m sorry that I’m calling this early, but this is important,” the woman’s voice was trembling. “Are you fully awake? I need you to be completely focused, can you do that?”

“Rosita, hi,” Waverly sat on her bed. “Yeah, I’m awake now. Why? What’s wrong?”

“Eliza gave me your number. Nicole and she were on patrol last night and they were ambushed, but…”

“No, Rosita, no…” a shiver went down her spine. “Is Nicole… where is she? Please, tell me she’s ok.”

“She’s at Purgatory Med, she’s alive. Eliza and I thought it was best to call you as soon as possible. Can you come over?”

“I’m on my way,” Waverly was already running around her room looking for her clothes. “Don’t leave her alone, ok? Please stay with her.”

“I won’t, don’t worry.”

Waverly rushed out of her bed and put on the first jeans and shirt that she found and ran into her car. She needed to be sure that Nicole was alright. She had to be. Although Rosita just said she was alive. What did that mean? It was good news, right? It meant that she was ok. But why didn’t Rosita said that? Why was she so vague? And why the hell didn’t Waverly ask for more information? Argh, so many unanswered questions popped up in her mind that she got distracted and almost crashed her car. Luckily for her, the driver of the other car was able to swerve before it was too late. She took a few deep breaths, she needed to focus. Nicole needed her with her head in the right place and being insanely distracted was not helpful.

 

The brunette walked inside the hospital faster than the wind. “Hello, I need to see Officer Nicole Haught,” she said.

“And who are you?” the receptionist asked.

“I’m her girlfriend.”

“Are you listed as her next of kin?”

“No, I don’t think so,” she whispered. “But please, you have to let me in, I need to see her, please.”

“I can see that you are desperate,” the woman said, “but I can’t let you in, I’m sorry. I could lose my job. So unless someone authorizes, there’s nothing I can do.”

Waverly started to look inside her purse for her phone; she needed someone to let her in.

“Waverly Earp…”

“Nedley! I mean, Sheriff Nedley,” she could almost smile. “Nicole, where is she? I need to see her, please.”

“Yeah, yeah,” he grumbled and looked at the receptionist. “You can authorize her, she’s with me.”

“As you wish, Sheriff.”

 

While she was walking through the hallways of the hospital, Waverly couldn’t get rid of a strange feeling inside her chest. It was emptiness. She didn’t feel her feet touching the ground, it was like she was floating. The typical smell of the hospital wasn’t there, she smelt smoke instead. It was coming from Nedley. Why did he smell like smoke?

They stopped walking when they got to the waiting room. Eliza and Rosita were there, too. Eliza had some parts of her face black like she had dived in coal. Her clothes were also dirty.

“I’m sorry if I startled you,” Rosita said when Waverly sat next to Eliza. “I thought you should be here as soon as possible.”

“It’s fine, Rosita. Thank you for calling me. How is she?” Waverly stared at the three people around her but neither of them looked back at her. “Guys? How is Nicole? Please.”

“She’s alive,” Nedley cleaned his throat. “Paramedics had to resuscitate her on the way here. She’s sleeping now because they sedated her. She inhaled too much smoke and they want less effort from her as possible right now.”

“What?” Waverly couldn’t believe her ears, that was not happening. “What the hell happened?”

“We split up,” Eliza spoke for the first time, but she was still staring at the pastel shade wall. Her voice was static like she was telling someone else’s story. “We were laughing when we got inside the car. It was supposed to be an easy hit. An old lady called for a car speeding on the road close to her house and we went there to check. When we got there it was so quiet. She felt something was odd so we called for backup and we split up. I went to the house and Nicole went to the barn. We fucking split up because it looked like nothing. I guess it was a kidnapping. I think he hit her and she was unconscious. I heard a few pops, I looked outside one the windows and I saw the barn on fire. I ran downstairs as fast as I could but I was already on the second floor. The guy had parked his car behind it and then he drove away. The place smelt like gasoline and it was really hot there. The windows were too high and he locked the fucking door. I tried to open it but I couldn’t. It took me some time to think about crashing the car against the door. I pulled her out and called for an ambulance, but I was too slow.”

“This ain’t on you, Shapiro,” Nedley said. “She’s your superior officer and it was her call.”

Eliza just shook her head.

“Sheriff Nedley is right,” Rosita said. “With all that happened, I think you actually saved her life. Nicole is strong you know that. It’s not the first time we are in a waiting room because of her. She will be fine.”

“Can we see her?” Waverly asked.

“Not yet,” Rosita answered. “Doctor is going to let us know when we can.”

“So what do we do now?”

“You two wait for her,” Nedley said. “Bustillos, you come with me. I know Biochemistry is your thing, but you’re going to help me with techs on this one.”

“Yes, sir.” She then looked at Eliza and Waverly. “Call me if anything changes, ok?”

 

The two women were left alone in the waiting room and the air between them was so thick that some could almost cut it with a knife. Somewhere a peaceful song was being played but Waverly couldn’t quite figure out which one was it.

“I’m going to the bathroom to wash my face,” Eliza said. “I’ll be right back.”

Waverly didn’t know what to do with herself, she needed someone to tell her it was going to be ok.

“Morning, baby girl,” Wynonna answered the call. “What’s up?”

“Did I wake you up, Wynonna?”

“Nah, since Alice was born I never slept in again. I think I’ll only be able to do that when she’s a teen,” Wynonna laughed.

“Mhm.”

“You sound off, baby girl. What is it?

“It’s Nicole…”

“What did Haught do? I’m going to kill the damn woman!”

“No, Wynonna. She didn’t…” Waverly sniffled. “She didn’t do anything against me.”

“So what is it, Waves?”

“She got hurt at the job. I mean really hurt. Nedley said she needed to be resuscitated.”

“Oh, baby girl. Is she…”

“She is alive now, but they had to resuscitate her, which means she died for a few moments,” Waverly wanted to scream her lungs out. “She died, Wynonna!”

“Hey, take a few deep breaths, baby girl. We don’t want you having a panic attack right now.”

“They sedated her because her heart stopped, Wynonna. What if she…”

“No, no, nope. Don’t go down that road. She’s strong and you know it. She will be just fine. I‘m sure.”

“But…” Waverly started but Wynonna stopped her.

“No, no buts here. I’ve seen the way she looks at you, Waverly. There is no way she’s going to give up right now.”

“Do you really think so?”

“I do. And you know what?” Wynonna asked. “The moment she wakes up she’ll need you at the top of your game, with your head on the right place.”

“Yeah, you are right,” Waverly dried the tears from her face. “She’s a fighter, she will overcome this too.”

“That’s my girl,” Wynonna smiled a little. “Do you want me to go to Purgatory to stay with you?”

“No, Wynonna, but thank you,” Waverly answered now that she was a little calmer. “I think I can handle it.”

“You can call Gus, too.”

“I will,” Waverly stated. “I’ll call you when something changes.”

“You do that and if you change your mind you tell me and I go there to stay with you, ok? I love you, baby girl.”

“I love you too, Wynonna. Bye.”

 

Waverly hasn’t even closed her purse and Eliza was back to the waiting room, sitting next to her again.

“You must hate me for leaving her alone there,” Eliza said slightly above a whisper.

“No, Eliza, of course not,” Waverly turned around to face the blonde woman. “I agree with Rosita. I think you saved her life.”

“Yeah? So why do I feel like this is my entire fault?”

“Because you love her,” Waverly simply stated.

“That woman has something that makes it hard not to love her,” Eliza smiled. “I think it’s the dimples.”

“Ah, definitely the dimples,” Waverly giggled. “The red hair is a strong feature, too.”

“She’s going to be ok, right Waverly?”

“She is,” The brunette said firmly and held hands with Eliza. “She has to.”

 

Waverly desperately wanted to be right. There was so much they haven’t lived yet, so much she still hasn’t said to Nicole. She needed her to open those big beautiful heart eyes and look at her again.

 

Hit me like a ray of sun

Burning through my darkest night

You're the only one that I want

Think I'm addicted to your light

I swore I'd never fall again

But this don't even feel like falling

Gravity can't forget

To pull me back to the ground again

You're everything I need and more

It's written all over your face

Baby, I can feel your halo

Pray it won't fade away

 

Beyoncé (2008)

Chapter Text

Chapter 18 – Most of us are strangers

 

Reach out when you're feeling low

Tell me everything I need to know

I wanna see you smiling

Come and tell me how it really is

I'm sick of keeping up appearances

Don't tell me you stopped fighting

 

 

If someone asked Waverly, she would swear that she was sitting on that uncomfortable chair in the waiting room in the hospital for weeks. The clock on the wall would tell otherwise. Only a couple of hours had gone by, but the brunette couldn’t wait to see her girlfriend. Eliza was still next to her and she looked extremely tired.

“You two are here for Officer Haught, am I right?” An old man with a white beard approached them. “I’m Doctor Reid; would you like to see her?”

“Can we?” Waverly asked, both women standing up quickly.

“Of course,” he said. “I think it’s safe for you to wait for her to wake up inside her room.”

 

They walked inside and Waverly's eyes instantly fell on Nicole. All she wanted was to go there and pick her girlfriend up, protect her from all the hurt in the world. The doctor got closer to the bed and checked on Nicole.

“Well, I think it’s safe to shut down the sedatives,” he said after a couple of minutes.

“Are you sure, Doctor Reid?”

“Oh, yes,” he smiled at both women. “She still needs to rest and she can’t push herself at all for some days, but I believe she’s good enough to awaken.”

“How long until she wakes up?” Waverly asked nervously.

“That’s up to her,” he started all the procedures on Nicole. “I guess that by the end of the day she’ll do it.”

“Thank you, Doctor,” both women said as he walked out of the room.

“Would you like to go home and have some rest, Eliza? No offense, but you look worn out.”

“No, I’m fine,” the blonde said sitting on an old chair. “I want to be here when she wakes up.”

“At least sit on the armchair,” Waverly said. Eliza opened her mouth to argue but Waverly wasn’t going to have it. “Please.”

 

The officer did as she was told and Waverly pulled a chair closer to the bed. She put her girlfriend’s hand inside of her own and a wave of relieving flooded her. Nicole's hand was warm and that was a good sign. It meant she was still fighting and it proved how brave the redhead was. Now it was only a matter of time until she would finally look inside those heart eyes. Waverly kissed Nicole's forehead, then sat back on the chair, sighing deeply. She would wait forever for this woman.

 

A few more hours went by and nothing had changed in the room. Waverly was feeling some pain in her back, but she was not going to move an inch. Eliza was asleep, which was good because the woman needed some rest.

 

“Water,” Waverly heard a whisper. She thought her ears were playing a prank on her, but that was not what was going on. When Waverly looked up, she realized that what was really happening was that Nicole had her eyes half open and apparently she was thirsty. Waverly got closer to her head, grabbed the glass of water next to her and helped the redhead to drink a little bit.

“Easy does it, ok baby?” Waverly couldn’t refrain the smile in her face. “Eliza, Eliza! Nicole woke up!”

The blonde staggered a little since she almost jumped out of the chair. She got closer to her friend and smiled at her. “I’m going to look for the doctor.”

“Waves,” Nicole talked so low that Waverly had to listen close. “Are we at a hospital?”

“Yes sweetie,” Waverly ran her fingers inside the red hair in front of her. “Do you feel any pain?”

“My head hurts a little.”

“Don’t work yourself too much,” Waverly kissed her forehead. “The doctor is coming.”

 

Waverly had barely closed her mouth and Eliza and the doctor were already back.

“Well, hello Officer Haught. I am Doctor Reid and I’m taking care of you. It’s good to see you awake, you scared us for a moment.”

“It was never my intention,” she answered looking at Waverly.

“I believe you. Do you know where we are? Do you remember what happened?”

“We are at the hospital. Purgatory Med, probably. We were checking a place because we got a report,” she looked at Eliza. “The last thing I remember is that someone punched me. I should have waited for back up, I was stupid.”

“It’s good to know that your brain is working fine,” he said. “We had to use a defibrillator on you because your heartbeats stopped for a while. We sedated you because you needed to rest, Officer. You still do, so please don’t leave this bed unless you need to use the bathroom and only do it with the help of one of the nurses, alright?”

“Yes, doctor,” the redhead answered. “When do you think I’ll be able to go home?”

“Let’s not go ahead of ourselves, ok?” The old man smiled. “We’ll watch you close the next couple of days and if everything goes well we can start to think about it. You were in a serious condition, Officer Haught. Don’t slacken it, please.”

“Don’t worry, Doctor Reid, we’ll make sure she follows everything you tell us,” Waverly said.

“Yeah, we won’t let her play hero here,” Eliza completed.

“I’ll behave,” Nicole gave up.

“Very well. Any pain, Officer?”

“My head hurts a little.”

“I’ll prescribe some medicine for you,” he started to walk away. “Please rest.”

“I’m so glad you are ok, dude,” Eliza said once the three women were alone.

“I’m sorry, guys. I didn’t mean to scare you so much.”

“We’ll talk about it when you get home,” Eliza said. “I’ll go to your place now, feed CJ and pack a bag to bring here to you.”

“Thanks, bud, you are the best.”

“Yeah yeah, I know,” the blonde said. “Bye Waverly, call me if you need anything.

“Thanks, Eliza,” Waverly then realized she was alone with Nicole.

“Waves, you can go home too, if you want,” Nicole said.

“That’s not going to happen, Nicole.”

“I’m sure I’ll be fine…”

“Nicole,” Waverly cut her immediately. “This is not up to discussion.”

“Ok, sorry,” Nicole bit her lip. “Are you mad at me?”

Waverly let go a deep and tired sigh. “I’m not mad. We are going to have a talk when we get home, but I’m not mad. I’m worried.” She bent down and kissed her girlfriend on the lips. Waverly knew she shouldn’t deepen the kiss, but it was hard to move away. It felt like ages since they had last kissed. “I’m also very happy to see you awake. Let’s rest now, alright?”

 

When Nicole closed her eyes, Waverly decided it was time to tell Wynonna how was everything. Before she unlocked her phone she saw a text from Chrissy.

 

I don’t want to intrude, but my dad told me about Nicole. Please let me know if you need anything, Waves.”

Waverly texted her back. “Thank you, Chrissy. She already woke up, so I think it will be just fine. I’ll talk to you later.”

 

She texted her sister then. “Nicole woke up. I think everything is going to be fine. Thank you for making me stay calm earlier. I already miss you a lot.”

Three dots popped under Wynonna’s name and the answer came soon. “I knew Haught Dog would be fine, baby girl. Let me know if you need anything else. I love you.

 

--**--

 

After three days Nicole was discharged, which made Waverly extremely happy because the redhead was starting to get a little grumpy. Her mood improved a lot when she arrived home because she could walk more than just to the bathroom. The first night was surprisingly easy and Nicole missed lying next to Waverly, even though the brunette tried to keep some sort of distance because she didn’t want to hurt her girlfriend.

 

When she woke up, Nicole felt the side of the bed where Waverly was supposed to be empty and cold. She went to the bathroom and then to the kitchen, where the brunette was cooking breakfast.

“Morning, love.”

“Hey baby, good morning.” Waverly threw her arms around Nicole and kissed her slowly.

“What are you doing here?”

“Oh, I made you some pancakes, an omelet, and coffee,” Waverly answered proudly. “Ah, there’s some strawberry jelly here that I suspect Eliza bought for us.”

“She’s great,” Nicole said while sitting by the table.

“She saved your life,” Waverly's tone was a lot more serious at that moment.

“Yeah?”

“Yes,” Waverly took a sip of her coffee. “She said the guy locked you inside that barn and then she threw the cruiser against the door and pulled you out.”

“I’m grateful she’s my friend and partner,” Nicole stated. “And now that we are home, I think we should talk about why you are mad at me?”

“No rain check with you, ah?”

“Nope,” Nicole smirked.

“As I said before, I’m not mad, I was worried,” Waverly started. “My dad died while working and being at the hospital because you were hurt was not good. They said you died and they had to resuscitate you, Nicole. This is serious. I almost lost you.” Waverly's voice was trembling. “Rosita said it wasn’t your first time at the hospital and I don’t know what to do with that information, baby.”

“Hey, hey, I’m alright now,” Nicole pulled her chair closer to Waverly's and held her girlfriend’s hands. “In the end, it’s all good.”

“I know it is,” Waverly said. “I know you can be careful, but your line of work is dangerous and it’s hard not to worry about it.”

“I understand, baby.”

“I don’t want to have this conversation with you all the time, so I’m just going to ask you once: can you pretty please be extra extra careful?” Waverly let go all the air from her lungs. “I can’t lose you, Nicole. We just started and I can’t face this world without you.”

“I promise, Waverly.” Nicole was the most serious the brunette has ever seen. “I will work hard but always with you in mind. I can’t lose you either, so I’ll do anything I need to make you want to be around me.”

“Good,” Waverly kissed her lightly. “Because I’ll always want to be around you.”

“You are the best, did you know that? I love you so much,” Nicole realized Waverly got a little uncomfortable. “Hey, I just want you to know it. I don’t expect anything from it.”

Waverly hummed and kissed Nicole on the lips once again. It was slow and deep and she tried to put all her feeling at the tip of her lips and her tongue. She wanted to tell Nicole that she loved her too, of course, she did. She knew she was close to the words but it was like they refused to leave her, no matter how much she wanted to say them.

 

--**--

They were back home for more than a week and at that moment Nicole was driving Waverly crazy because they were kissing on the couch. The redhead had put her girlfriend’s legs over her own and was making long and bold movements over Waverly's thigh. She kissed down all her way from the brunette’s lips to her neck and sucked the exposed skin. Waverly had her hand inside the red hair but she knew they needed to cool down, due to Nicole not being completely recovered yet.

“Baby, baby please…”

“Tell me what you want, love,” Nicole said between kisses.

“I want to stop,” Waverly said without thinking about the way she was doing it. As soon as Nicole heard that, she pulled away and widely opened her eyes.

“Did I do something wrong?”

“No baby, no,” Waverly tried to find the right words. “But you are in the middle of your recovery. I think we shouldn’t push it too much.”

“But I miss you,” Nicole pouted.

“I miss you too, sweetie,” Waverly gave her a peck on the lips. “Just a few more days, ok?”

Before Nicole could protest the sound of the doorbell echoed inside the apartment.

“I’ll open it,” Waverly jumped off Nicole's lap. “Hi, Eliza. Good to see you, come in.”

“Sup, Eliza?” Nicole sat upright.

“Hey, Nicole. Feeling better?” Nicole just nodded. “I came here because I have some news. We arrested the guy who tried to kill you. Nedley worked his ass off on this case. Turns out it was a kidnapping. He saw us getting out of the car and set up a plan. He put it all on fire so I’d be too worried about you to chase him. Nedley pressured him so much that he confessed.”

“Son of a bitch thought fast,” Nicole said.

“Yeah, tell me about it.”

“The victim of the kidnapping is ok?” Nicole asked and Waverly once again thought of how much of a good police Nicole was.

“At home, safe and sound,” the blonde answered.

“You got the guy, confession on the table, so what else is wrong?”

“Nothing,” Eliza answered. “Why?”

“Well, maybe because my best friend hasn’t visited me since I left the hospital,” Nicole said, “and now that she is here she still can’t look me in the eye.”

Eliza was caught completely out of guard with the question and her jaw dropped.

“I’ll go to the grocery store so you two can talk,” Waverly moved from the couch and walked out the door.

“So… I’m waiting here, Eliza.”

“I almost got you killed…” the blonde said.

“Why the hell would you think something like that?” Nicole said outraged.

“Because if I was with you, nothing of this would have happened and…”

“Stop, stop, stop, Eliza. I know that what happened was bad, but none of it was your fault,” Nicole's expression was softer. “I remember that I was the one who suggested splitting up.”

“Everyone keeps saying that,” Eliza said. “So why do I feel so bad?”

“Because we are not only partners, we are friends. You want people thinking you are tough but you’re a big softie inside.”

“Am not!”

“Yes, you are,” Nicole laughed. “And from the way Waverly told me how things happened, I think you saved my life. I’ll be forever grateful for that.”

“You’d do the same for me.”

“I would,” Nicole said. “Because I love you. I don’t blame you at all for what happened, Eliza.”

“You are not mad?”

“Not a bit,” Nicole answered. “And I missed you these days.”

“I’m sorry I acted weird,” Eliza said. “And I love you too, by the way.”

“Big softie, I told you,” Nicole teased.

“Shut up,” the blonde pretended to be annoyed but she was smiling. “Ah, I almost forgot: Nedley said you can come back to work next week.”

“I would feel happy if I didn’t know he’s going to make me stay on the desk for two weeks,” Nicole sighed.

“Definitely.”

 

Nicole was truly relieved that she was able to talk to Eliza and make things right. She always hated miscommunication. When Waverly got back home (with two bags of bakery goods), the mood was very light.

 

After Eliza left, Nicole and Waverly decided they were too tired to do anything else and started getting ready for bed. When the redhead got out of the bathroom, she found her girlfriend already in bed, with a book in hand. She sat at the edge of the bed and began massaging the brunette’s feet.

“You are the one in recovery,” Waverly said. “Shouldn’t I be rubbing your feet?”

“I’m not doing anything important,” Nicole shrugged. “You are.”

“I’m just reading, baby.”

“Reading is important,” Nicole stated. Waverly smiled and her eyes were sparkling. The redhead couldn’t quite read that expression. “What?”

“Nothing. Come lie next to me,” Waverly invited and Nicole immediately obeyed.

“What’s this face, Waves?”

“I was just counting my blessings,” the brunette replied. “I had to count you twice.”

“Sweet talker,” Nicole said and pecked Waverly on the lips, now that they were lying face to face.

“I’m serious,” the brunette smiled. “I’m so lucky to have you in my life.”

“Me too, baby. You make me so happy.”

 

Waverly felt so comfortable at that moment, just there with Nicole. They had such a good day, just being home together. She knew it was the right moment to say those three words. She was in love with Nicole and her girlfriend loved her, too. She was in the safest place in the world: inside Nicole's arms. There was no doubt about it. That was the perfect time to kick down some walls.

“I love you, Nicole.”

For a second Waverly wasn’t sure if she had said it aloud because Nicole didn’t react at all. She could see when it hit her, tho. The look on her girlfriend was one of the most beautiful things Waverly had ever seen.

“Waves…”

“Gosh, I wish I could freeze this moment in a frame to see it again and again,” Waverly said. “You look adorable, baby.”

“I love you, too. So much.” Nicole said with her voice a little broken.

“Come here,” Waverly moved on top of Nicole and kissed her until the point they were both breathless.

 

If someone asked Waverly to describe happiness, she would talk about that moment and that feeling that was flooding her heart.

 

 

I don't wanna lose you, I need you with me

I don't wanna sit and watch history repeat

Most of us are strangers

Who want someone to save us

We're looking out for angels

And something we can hold on

We are sirens, suffer in the silence

Getting tired of trying

And tired of being alone

 

Seafret (2020)

Chapter Text

Chapter 19 – All of me

 

What would I do without your smart mouth

Drawing me in, and you kicking me out

Got my head spinning, no kidding, I can't pin you down

You're my downfall, you're my muse

My worst distraction, my rhythm, and blues

I can't stop singing, it's ringing, in my head for you

My head's underwater

But I'm breathing fine

You're crazy and I'm out of my mind

 

 

It was a bright morning, Nicole had just finished her breakfast and she was washing the dishes. She could feel Waverly's eyes hitting the back of her head hard.

“Are you ok, love?”

“Yeah,” Waverly grumbled. “But I’m going to miss you. I enjoyed staying at home with you these days.”

“I loved it too,” Nicole held the brunette’s hand. “I’m just going to work, baby. I’ll come home by the end of my shift, I swear. But that’s not what is bothering you, is it?”

“No. It’s your first day back, Nicole. I’m worried.”

“I’m on desk duty. Nedley said I won’t be allowed to go on patrol for at least a week or two,” Nicole tried to calm Waverly.

“Yeah, like that is going to prevent you to run toward danger if you think you need to,” the brunette mourned.

“Hey, I made a promise to you that I intend to keep. I will always be careful and I’ll always come back to you.”

“I know, I’m sorry” Waverly sighed. “I’m overreacting.”

“No, love. Look, I promise that I’ll check on you regularly, ok?” Nicole kissed Waverly softly. “But I have to go now or I’ll be late. I love you, babe.”

“I love you too, sweetie,” Waverly smiled. “I like to say it.”

“I like to hear it. I really have to go now, bye love,” Nicole pecked Waverly on the lips and rushed out the door.

 

Waverly found herself alone at Nicole's apartment and decided she was going to finish writing a report she was postponing. She finished all she had planned for the day and after some quick lunch, she thought about going out for a walk. Before she could do that, her phone started buzzing with several texts from Chrissy.

 

“Waves, I need to talk to you ASAP! Can we meet?”

“And I mean like right now.”

“Can you come?”

Address attached.

 

Waverly saw that the address was for a café, so maybe it wasn’t a life or death situation. Curiosity getting the best of her, Waverly decided to just answer with “coming” and drove there.

When she got there, she saw not only Chrissy but also Mercedes was there too. That could only mean one thing…

“Hey, guys, what’s up?”

“Hi Waves,” Chrissy smiled. “We have some big news for you!”

“Oh, please, no mystery you two, tell me…”

“Well, Nedley Junior and I worked our magic and we found a way to break your contract with the studios,” Mercedes said. “But don’t get too excited, there are some conditions.”

“What is it? What do they want?”

“Alright, so… They are going to keep the payment from the last movie you made.” Chrissy started. “And since your contract would only end in December, they want you to pay for 50% of the movies that were scheduled for you.”

“What?” Waverly yelled. “They want me to pay for the movies I won’t make?”

“Unfortunately, yes.”

“But that’s like…” Waverly made some math in her mind, “that’s like 60% of everything I have saved!”

“We know, Waves. The other option they gave you is for you to make three more movies without charging them anything,” Chrissy said.

“No way, that’s absurd!”

“Your contract says that you’d have to pay 75% of the movies you were scheduled to do if you wanted to break it 6 months prior to its end, Waverly,” Mercedes said. “We managed to persuade them to these terms because you were never a problem to them and because you’d leave behind the last payment.”

“Isn’t there another way?” The brunette asked looking at Chrissy.

“Only these three, Waves: you pay them, you make these three extra movies or you keep your contract.”

“I’m not going to work for them anymore,” Waverly sighed heavily. “Alright then, I guess I’ll give them what they want.”

“Ok, Waves. I have the settling contract here for you to sign. We can go to the bank tomorrow to transfer them the money if you want.”

“That would be great. Thanks, Chrissy,” Waverly held the hands of both women in front of her. “And thank you too, Mercedes. I know your presence there helped with my case.”

“I like you a lot, Waverly. I just want you to be happy,” Mercedes said. “Gotta go now, bitches. Talk to you later.”

“Bye, Mercedes,” Waverly replied and then looked at Chrissy. “Am I going crazy to do that?”

“Of course not, Waves. You are done with this horrible industry. It’s good that you are leaving before you lose your mind.”

“Yeah, but all the money I’m going to lose…”

“You’ll get it back eventually,” Chrissy smiled. “You are young and you still have time to do so much. You are almost graduating, which means you can focus on your studying now. I’ll help you with anything you need. And so will Wynonna and Nicole. Think about the bright side of it: we managed to keep your apartment.”

“Yeah, you are right. Your payment is going to be the best money I’ll ever spend,” Waverly smiled.

“There is no way you are going to pay me, Waves,” the blonde argued.

“Of course I will, Chrissy,” the brunette protested.

“I did all of this to see you happy,” Chrissy smiled. “That’s all the payment I need.”

“You are amazing,” Waverly could almost cry. “I’m so glad you are part of my life.”

“I’m so proud of you, Waves. You are going to be just fine,” Chrissy smiled. “You’ll find a job. I’ll help you with whatever you need.”

“When can I tell everybody the good news?” Waverly asked excitedly.

“Anytime you want,” Chrissy said. “You’re going to sign all I need now and then you are a free woman.”

 

Several signed paper sheets later, Waverly decided to go back to Nicole's apartment and surprise her girlfriend with dinner. She had just closed the oven’s door when she heard the front door opening.

“Hey, baby. Are you home?” Nicole asked going to the bathroom.

“I’m right here, love,” Waverly showed up from the kitchen with two glasses of wine.

“Are we celebrating something?” Nicole asked as soon as she saw her girlfriend.

“Many things,” Waverly kissed her girlfriend on the lips. “You went back to work after some hard weeks, looking hot as hell in your uniform, I’m no longer a porn actress…”

“Wait, what?” Nicole asked putting their glasses over the coffee table. “Did Chrissy managed to break your contract?”

“She did! I’m free from them, baby,” Waverly threw her arms around Nicole's neck. Before Nicole could even understand what was happening, Waverly pressed her against the wall and kissed her fiercely. The redhead didn’t lose much time and pushed them both to the couch. Soon they were lying together, with Nicole on top and Waverly throwing her legs around her waist. As much as the brunette loved her girlfriend’s uniform, she wanted to feel her bare skin. She made the clothes slide from Nicole's shoulders and kissed all the exposed skin she could find. Waverly moved until they changed position and she was finally on top of the redhead. Once they were both completely naked, Waverly kissed her way down and pressed several kissed all over Nicole. She ran her tongue all over Nicole's clit. The redhead felt her legs melting and groaned deeply.

“Fuck, Waves.”

Waverly tasted her girlfriend for a while but it was too much for her, hearing her name coming out of Nicole's mouth in sync with her moans. The brunette went back up and kissed her lips vigorously. Nicole instantly put her hand between Waverly's legs and pushed her fingers inside her. Waverly did the same thing and started biting and sucking Nicole on the neck. They kept pushing and moaning together. Waverly felt herself explode and the grip inside Nicole tightening, she knew her girlfriend came, too. The brunette felt her body on flames and the only thing that seemed reasonable to do was to kiss Nicole. Hard. So that was what she did one more time. She felt her breasts pressing against Nicole's and a moan escaped from her mouth.

“Oh Lord,” Nicole said with her lips rubbing Waverly's. “Did that just happen?”

“Definitely, baby,” Waverly kissed her chest.

“What are we? Teenagers again?” Nicole giggled.

“Oh, stop it,” Waverly smiled. “We are celebrating and I know you loved it.”

“I love every moment with you,” Nicole kissed her lightly.

“Oh, fudge nuggets,” Waverly got up quickly. “I forgot about dinner. Stay here.”

 

Nicole giggled a little and put back her underwear and her sports bra. Waverly soon got back to the living room, bringing dinner with her.

“Are you having dinner naked, baby?” Nicole asked with a playful smile on her lips.

“Is there a problem?”

“I love the view,” Nicole said, “but it’s distracting.”

“I have to call Wynonna and Gus,” Waverly put on the t-shirt Nicole was hearing under her uniform. “I can’t wait to tell them that I’m no longer going to work with porn.”

“They’ll be proud of you,” the redhead smiled. “I know I am proud of you, Waverly Earp.”

“You are too good for me, Nicole Haught. I would never be able to do all of this without you.”

“No one, no one, is too good for you, Waves. You are extraordinary,” Nicole rubbed Waverly's shin. “And you’d be just as good without me.”

“A lot less red and with fewer dimples, too,” Waverly teased.

“That’s true,” Nicole laughed. “So, tell me, what are your plans now? Your graduation is coming…”

“It’s an online course, baby. However, I’ve been thinking... I’ll lose some money with this contract break, but I have a plan: if Wynonna decides to move back to Purgatory we’ll fix the homestead, I can sell this apartment and then start my own business. If she doesn’t want to move back, I think I should fix the homestead anyway. We could rent the place, I don’t know.”

“I think it’s a good idea, beautiful. And I don’t care it’s an online course. You are the smartest person I’ve ever met,” Nicole bent and kissed the brunette’s leg. “People would be crazy not to want to work with you.”

“Enough about me,” Waverly wanted to change the subject of their conversation. “How was your first day back?”

“Boring. Nedley didn’t allow me to leave my chair.”

“You almost died, it’s only fair.”

“I stayed for a long time in the hospital and even longer at home,” Nicole replied. “I think I could at least go on patrol.”

“Yeah, I’m not buying it. I’m with Nedley on this one,” Waverly said. “And now that you talked about the hospital, I remembered that I want to ask you something. Who is your next of kin?”

“Eliza and I are each other’s next of kin,” Nicole simply said. “Why?”

“Nothing, I was just curious.”

“I think I know you a little better than that, Waves. What is it?”

“It’s just… when you were at the hospital, if Nedley didn’t come out, I wouldn’t be able to see you. They didn’t want to allow me to get in,” Waverly said quietly.

Nicole put her plate on the coffee table and kneeled next to her girlfriend. “I’ll put your name and phone number as my emergency contact first thing in the morning, love.”

“No, you don’t have to do that,” Waverly whispered. “Now I feel stupid for bringing it up.”

“It isn’t stupid and I want my girlfriend to be my next of kin.”

“Alright, but make sure you keep Eliza on your list as well,” Waverly said. “You guys have always had each other’s back. I don’t want to intrude on that.”

“You are cute,” Nicole kissed her, “sweet,” kiss, “sexy,” another kiss, “and I love you, Waverly Earp.”

“I love you, too,” Waverly looked at those heart eyes and those dimples and couldn’t resist that face. She kissed all over that woman in front of her who made her world turn upside down. Waverly knew that Nicole was the only one she could open her heart to, that she could be herself. With Nicole, Waverly didn’t fear the cliff because she knew that when she got there she was sure she could fly.

 

 

Cards on the table, we're both showing hearts

Risking it all, though it's hard

'Cause all of me loves all of you

Love your curves and all your edges

All your perfect imperfections

Give your all to me

I'll give my all to you

You're my end and my beginning

Even when I lose I'm winning

'Cause I give you all of me

And you give me all of you

 

John Legend (2013)

Chapter Text

Chapter 20 – To build a home

 

There is a house built out of stone

Wooden floors, walls and window sills

Tables and chairs worn by all of the dust

This is a place where I don't feel alone

This is a place where I feel at home

 

One day after Waverly told Nicole she had signed the break of her contact and after almost an hour inside the bank, Chrissy and the lawyer from the studios shook hands. It was over. For real. Waverly had transferred the money to her former employer and she was officially an unemployed woman. She had never been happier not to know where to go.

“Chrissy, you are an angel in my life. I don’t even know how I’ll ever be able to pay you,” she hugged her friend.

“No need of that, Waves. It was an honor to help you.”

“Do you want to have lunch to celebrate?”

“I wish I could,” Chrissy sadly replied, “but I have an appointment with another client.”

“We’ll have time, don’t worry,” Waverly then remembered. “Hey, does Perry still work in the construction area?”

“He does,” the blonde answered. “Why?”

“I’ve been thinking about rebuilding the homestead, but I know nothing about it. I think I could hire him to help me.”

“I’ll text you his number and you call him,” Chrissy hugged her friend. “I have to go now, bye Waves.”

“Bye, Chrissy. And thank you again,” Waverly shouted the last part when the blonde was a few steps away.

 

She thought about going to Nicole's, but she got a text from the redhead saying they should meet at Waverly's after her shift. When she arrived home, things felt strange. Maybe it was the fact that she stayed so many days in her girlfriend’s apartment or maybe it was the fact that the idea of living again in the homestead started to consume her. Whatever it was, the apartment she lived for so long started to seem foreign for her.

When Nicole arrived, she seemed startled, watching around herself.

“Hey baby,” Waverly kissed her. “Are you ok?”

“Just fine, love. How was your day?”

“Amazing,” the brunette smiled. “Chrissy and I finished all that was left with the studios and I’m finally free from them.”

“Congratulations, baby. You deserve it.”

“Do you want to go out to have lunch?”

“I brought lunch for us if you don’t mind,” Nicole said. “I thought we could stay in a bit.”

“Sounds good, love.”

 

After lunch, Waverly noticed that Nicole was still nervous. She kept looking at her phone and it started to annoy the brunette a little.

“Ok, Nicole. Tell me what’s wrong so I can help you.”

“There is nothing wrong, Waves. Why would you say that?”

“You arrived here all weird, you barely talked to me during lunch and you can’t stop checking your phone. Are you waiting for someone to call you?”

“No, I was just checking the time.”

“Every thirty seconds?” Waverly asked. “Are we gonna start lying to each other now?”

“No baby, I’m not lying,” Nicole stood up and held Waverly's hands. “I promise nothing is wrong.”

Waverly opened her mouth to protest, but someone was knocking on the door.

“Why don’t you go open the door, love?”

Waverly looked at her girlfriend suspiciously but decided to see what she was up to.

“Fancy building of yours, baby girl.”

Right in front of her eyes, there was Wynonna. Not only her but also Dolls, Doc and Alice.

“Wynonna, you are here,” Waverly threw herself in the arms of her sister. “What are you guys doing here?”

“We decided to check on you,” Wynonna said.

“It’s a surprise, Aunt Waverly,” Alice said jumping from Doc’s arms.

“It’s a great one, Alice. I’m so happy to see you,” Waverly said letting her family get inside of her apartment. “How did you know where I live?”

“Red Haught Chili Peppers here sent us your address,” Wynonna replied.

“That’s why you were so nervous,” Waverly smiled.

“I didn’t want to ruin the surprise,” Nicole said.

“We are sorry that it took us longer than expected,” Dolls said, “but Wynonna decided to argue with the GPS.”

“Why don’t you complain about Doc who wanted to stop every five minutes?” Wynonna refuted.

“I do not appreciate traveling by car, I must confess that,” Doc smiled a little under his mustache.

“It’s so good to have you all here,” Waverly couldn’t contain her happiness.

“Nicole, could you get me that Alfa Romeo we talked about?” Alice eagerly asked.

“Alice, that’s not polite,” Dolls stepped in.

“Don’t worry, Dolls.” Nicole kneeled to look the girl in the eyes. “I actually did, Alice. It’s in my bag. Do you want to have it now?”

“Cool!”

Waverly took advantage that everybody was distracted with Alice and pulled Wynonna to her bedroom so they could talk.

“I was going to call you today,” Waverly said, “but it’s so much better doing it with you here. There’s something I wanted to tell you.”

“What is it, baby girl? I’m curious now.”

“After I left your house I made a decision,” Waverly started. “I didn’t want to work with porn anymore.”

“Waves, you don’t have to do this for me,” Wynonna said. “I won’t let anything get between us anymore. I promise.”

“It’s not just for you, Nonna. It’s for me too.” Waverly smiled. “It’s over now. I signed the last papers this morning and I’m no longer in the porn industry.”

“For real?” Wynonna suddenly had teary eyes.

“For real and forever. I’m sorry it took me so long, Wynonna. I’m sorry it almost ruined us forever.”

“Oh Waves,” Wynonna tried her best to hold her tears. “I’m so proud of you baby girl.”

“Are you crying, Nonna?” Waverly smiled between tears too.

“You just caught me unprepared,” Wynonna dried her face. “I thought I was the one with a surprise.”

“More than being here? What is it?”

“I talked a lot with Doc and Dolls and we made a decision,” Wynonna smiled. “We are going to accept your offer. We are going to move back to Purgatory and the Homestead with you.”

“Are you serious? This is amazing, I can’t believe it,” Waverly threw her arms around her sister again.

“Super serious. We still haven’t talked to Alice, tho.”

“Do you think she’s going to hate it?” Waverly asked, afraid that her niece wouldn’t want to move.

“Nah, she’ll be fine,” Wynonna said. “She doesn’t like her school anyway. Some kids bully her there because our family is not conventional and the fucking parents allow it. It’s not a good place there.”

“Your family is beautiful, Wynonna.”

“Our family, baby girl. So, what do you think we go to the homestead to see how bad is the place?”

“Let’s do it now,” Waverly replied excitedly.

 

~~**~~

“This is…ah… interesting. I mean, it’s…it’s… different,” Nicole carefully considered after looking at the homestead for the first time. The walls were worn out and parts of the roof were falling down. The grass was drought and the fence was destroyed in several places.

“There are many needles all over the ground,” Dolls observed. “Many addicts must come here frequently.”

“Come on, you guys,” Wynonna said. “It’s not that bad.”

“Wynonna is right,” Waverly agreed. “Besides, this is ours. It’s home.”

“I understand it, baby,” Nicole took her girlfriend’s hand, “but it’s in bad shape. It’s going to take a lot of effort to make it livable again.”

“I know,” Waverly sighed. “I talked to Chrissy and she said Perry still works with construction. I thought we could ask for his help.”

“As long as he doesn’t make us pay through our noses, I think it’s a good idea,” Wynonna said. “Also, we can create a schedule so the boys and Hottie Haught can help some days.”

“What makes you think I can work with construction, Wynonna?” Nicole tried to look angry but she was smiling.

“You can at least paint, Haught, don’t be annoying.”

“Well, are you going to help?” Nicole crossed her arms in front of her chest.

“I will provide entertaining every day you guys come here,” Wynonna said looking around. “I like this. I think it will be good for Alice to grow up in this place. We can create new memories here. Good ones this time, baby girl.”

“I can’t wait to see the inside,” Dolls mocked.

“Hey Alice,” Wynonna called her daughter who was playing with Doc several steps away from the rest of the group. “Come here, Bug. What would you think if we moved here to this house?”

“It’s creepy, Mama,” the little girl said once she was close to her mother.

“We are going to fix it, Bug. It’s going to look cool,” Wynonna said. “Besides, Auntie Waverly would come live with us.”

“For real? We can have sleepovers! I want to see inside,” the girl said running toward the house.

 

Waverly held Doc by the arm while the other three followed Alice inside the Homestead.

“Doc, do you remember that I asked you about your bar back on Christmas?”

“Indeed, I do, Waverly. Why?”

“What are you going to do with it if you move back to Purgatory?”

“Well, I think I will have to sell it,” he said. “It is not very wise to go so far to work every day. I don’t want to miss so much of my little girl’s life and I certainly don’t like all the trip from here to there.”

“What are you going to do with the money?” Waverly eagerly asked.

“Why are you so interested in this, Waverly?”

“Well, I was thinking…” the brunette started, “I want to offer you a partnership. As soon as you guys accept moving here to the Homestead I’m going to put my apartment on sale. I’ll have good money, but I don’t know if that will be enough. That’s when you come in. With the money you get from selling you bar I think we’ll have enough to buy Shorty’s back from Bobo.”

“Are you thinking of bartending again?” He asked. “I thought you were going to college or something.”

“I am studying, but I would love to have Shorty’s back to us,” she smiled. “Shorty was very important to me and it breaks my heart to know that Bobo owns the place now.”

“God knows he doesn’t make it justice,” Doc replied. “So how would that work? Would we share both the profits and work there?”

“In the beginning, yes,” Waverly answered. “I need a job right now and I doubt anyone would be willing to give me one, due to my working history. When I finish my graduation, if I ever find a job in that area, I’ll hire someone to stay in my place or we can schedule what is best for you. So, what do you think?”

“Any idea that comes from your smart brain must be valuable,” he smiled. “I will talk about it with Wynonna and Dolls and see their opinion. However, this seems like a fine solution, Waverly.”

“Ah, you are the best, Doc,” she hugged him tight.

“I am happy we can be a family again, Waverly,” he held the woman by her shoulders, guiding them inside the house. “Wynonna missed you very much. And so did I. I have not seen her as happy as she has been since Christmas.”

“I’m happy too,” she said, “partner.”

 

As Doc walked inside looking for his family, Waverly spotted Nicole looking attentively at something on the wall.

“There’s a lot of termites here, baby. I thing fumigation needs to be the first step,” Nicole said.

“Do you think this is a bad idea?”

“No, Waves. You are going to live with your family,” Nicole held her by the waist. “I think you guys can be happy here, but we’ll have a lot of work to do.”

“This is far from downtown,” Waverly threw her arms around Nicole’s neck. “Which means this is far from your place and work.”

“My car still works just fine” Nicole had a goofy smile on her face.

“So you are not annoyed about this at all?”

“How could I ever be annoyed about something that makes you happy, beautiful?”

“I don’t know,” Waverly replied. “How could I ever live without you around? Where were you all this time?”

“We were looking for each other, love.”

“I like to think that, too,” Waverly kissed her softly.

“You can’t stay away from her even for two minutes, can you Haught?” Wynonna showed up in the living room.

“No, I can’t,” Nicole teased. “And that’s what I do when I know you are around. Imagine the things we do when we are alone, Earp.”

“Ew, shut up, that’s my sister you are talking about,” Wynonna said with a twisted face.

 

Waverly buried her face in Nicole's chest and felt deeply happy. She was definitely home. In more than one way.

 

 

Out in the garden where we planted the seeds

There is a tree as old as me

Branches were sewn by the color of green

Ground had arose and passed it's knees

By the cracks of the skin, I climbed to the top

I climbed the tree to see the world

When the gusts came around to blow me down

I held on as tightly as you held onto me

And, I built a home

For you, for me

 

The Cinematic Orchestra (2007)

Chapter Text

Chapter 21 – Grow as we go

 

You won't be the only one

I am unfinished, I've got so much left to learn

I don't know how this river runs

But I'd like the company through every twist and turn

I don't know who we'll become

I can't promise it's not written in the stars

But I believe that when it's done

We're gonna see that it was better

That we grew up together

 

 

So far this week Nicole had already spilled coffee all over her clean uniform, hurt her left arm when helping to fix the homestead and just now she somehow managed to hit her little toe against one of the legs of her desk. That would definitely win the worst week ever contest if someone asked her.

 

“What has gotten into you, Haught?” Eliza asked.

“Why?” Nicole barely opened her mouth.

“You look like you saw someone throwing a puppy from a car and then running over it,” Eliza widen her eyes. “Oh my God, did you?”

“No, of course not,” Nicole replied bitterly. “That’s a horrible thing to say.”

“So what is wrong with you?”

“Tough week.”

“Come on, Nicole,” Eliza pulled her chair closer to Nicole's. “I know you, there’s more in that.”

“I tried to talk to my dad this morning before my shift started,” Nicole grumbled.

“Ouch. How did it go?” Eliza sat back on her chair.

“What do you think?” Nicole asked harshly.

“Why did you do that, dude? You know how he is.” Eliza said.

“Well, maybe I thought things would be different. I’m sorry if I have been mistaken, Shapiro.”

“Hey, sorry. I didn’t mean to…”

“Haught!” They heard a scream coming from Nedley’s office. “Come here right now!”

Nicole left Eliza behind and walked there as if she was carrying one hundred pounds on her back. “Yes, Sir?”

“Haught, I need you to rewrite the drug seizure report you delivered me this morning,” the sheriff said.

“Can I ask why, sir?”

“You messed up a lot of information here that could risk the entire trial once this got there,” he replied. “What is going on with you today? You are not the kind of doing this rookie mistake.”

“With all due respect, Sir, it was just one mistake,” she said. “I’ve been working hard here in Purgatory for more than a year and I think I’ve been proving my worth to be more than a rookie.”

“Yeah, well, you can’t afford a mistake like this once you become sheriff,” Nedley stared at her. “Other officers are going to look up to you. You have to set an example.”

“Sheriff?”

“Yes, Haught. Sheriff,” he just said. “That’s why I’ve brought you from Toronto and why I have been training you all along. No one here is getting younger and I want to enjoy my last few years. I need to know you can take the pressure.”

“I’ll do my best,” Nicole said. “I promise.”

“Then take a piece of advice from this old man who has been in your shoes: everybody has problems and bad days, but you gotta leave all this bullshit outside your precinct. We deal with life or death situations every day. One thing is risking your own life and a very different one is if put on risk your officers. Your brain can go crazy if you think you didn’t do everything you could to help your fellow men outside. I want you to have that in mind every time you put on your uniform and badge,” he then gave her the report he was still holding. “Go on and fix this. Dismissed.”

“Thank you, Sir.”

 

Nicole walked outside his office and still couldn’t quite figure what she was feeling. Nedley had both complained and supported her in less than two minutes. The redhead didn’t even realize her friend watching her close.

“What happened there, dude? You have a blank look on your face.”

“Nedley wants me to fix this report,” Nicole said. “He also wants me to be sheriff someday.”

“Really?”

“Yeah. He said he wants me to take his place here,” Nicole was still astonished.

“Does that mean you are going to be my boss?”

“You can always find another precinct if you want,” Nicole was annoyed because she couldn’t read what her friend wanted to say.

“So you don’t want me to even work in your precinct? That’s great, nice move, Haught,” Eliza walked away.

“Wait, Eliza,” Nicole said but it was worthless. “Damn it. Can this day be over already?”

 

~~**~~

When her shift ended, Nicole decided to go straight home. She was supposed to go help in the homestead, but it was obvious that it wasn’t the best move at that moment. She also hadn’t seen Eliza for the rest of the day. Maybe her blonde went on patrol to avoid her.

She changed into the most comfortable pants she had and a sports bra. She had barely sat on the couch when she heard Waverly getting in.

“Hi baby, you got me worried,” the brunette said. “You didn’t see my texts and you never showed up at the homestead.”

“Sorry, Waverly. It hasn’t been a good day.”

“Don’t worry, things will be fine,” Waverly shrugged. “I was talking to Perry and he thinks that we can move in sooner than expected. The bedrooms are almost ready. I can’t wait to tell Wynonna this. It’s been tough weeks of work.”

“That’s great, Waves.”

“Do you think you can go there on the weekend to help me paint?” Waverly asked.

“I don’t know,” Nicole replied, starting to get upset.

“Why? Do you have better things to do?”

“I have a job. You do know that, right?” Nicole was unable to hide her frustration. “Maybe it’s not exciting, but it is important.”

“I know, Nicole. What has gotten into you today?” Waverly asked.

“Oh my God, if someone else asks me this today I swear I’m gonna flip,” the redhead exploded and stood up, holding a cushion in her hand. “Not everything goes around the homestead, alright?”

“Hey, watch your tone and don’t talk to me like that,” Waverly began to lose her patience as well. “What the hell happened to you?”

“I’m just tired, is that ok for you, Waverly? I’m exhausted of everyone wanting something from me,” Nicole opened her mouth and it was like a waterfall of anger. “I don’t mind helping at the homestead, but I have other responsibilities, too. Wynonna is going to live there and she doesn’t do shit around the house. I’m sorry if I’m not always rainbows and butterflies. Can I have a bad day or is that not good enough for you?”

“Hey, if you are having a bad day I understand, but don’t go all grumpy and screaming at me,” Waverly said loudly. “You could have talked to me and I would have understood.”

“Yeah, I forgot that everything is so perfect for you lately, right Waverly?” Nicole's face was as red as her hair. “You’ve been so caught in this perfect bubble that you created now that you don’t see things around you.”

“Are you listening to yourself?” Waverly couldn’t believe her girlfriend was acting like that.

“That’s just peachy, Waverly,” Nicole laughed humorlessly. “You are unbelievable right now.”

“No, you are unbelievable. I’m not going to stay here to hear you being a complete idiot with me,” Waverly stopped by the door. “Call me when you get back to normal and decide to apologize to me.”

“God damn it,” Nicole threw away the cushion she was holding and screamed alone at home. That was the perfect end to her day. Just great.

 

Nicole decided that it was better to go to sleep, but it was hard. She tossed around her bed and huffed loudly because she couldn’t believe herself. Guilty was eating her alive. She had been a jerk to Waverly and she felt awful for doing that. What if Waverly didn’t want to talk to her anymore? Nicole wouldn’t be able to forgive herself if she lost the love of her life over a stupid bad day that made her an idiot.

 

She stood up, put on some decent clothes and drove to her girlfriend’s apartment.

Nicole knocked slightly on the door hoping to maybe still find Waverly awake but not wanting to wake her if she wasn’t. After a few seconds, she heard a noise coming from the inside. Waverly opened the door and the moment she saw Nicole standing there, she rested her head at the threshold.

“You are crying,” Nicole observed. “Holy shit, I made you cry. I’m so sorry, Waverly. I’m sorry times infinity…”

“Come inside,” Waverly pulled her by the hand and close the door behind them.

“I’m so sorry, Waverly,” Nicole didn’t let go of her girlfriend’s hand. “I was a stupid, mean jerk to you. I should never have said those things.”

“Girlfriends fight,” Waverly tried to put her mind together. “It’s the worst, but it can happen.”

“It can’t, Waves. Not the way I did it. Even if I have the worst day in the world, I can’t take it on you and I’m sorry. Can you find it in your heart to forgive me?”

“We both screamed and said bad things, baby,” Waverly guided them to the couch.

“I made you cry, that’s unacceptable. It’s not healthy and that’s not who I want to be.”

“I wasn’t crying because of our fight,” Waverly dropped her head to the side. “Well, not only because of that.”

“What else happened, Waves?”

“After I got home,” the brunette started, “I started to replay our entire encounter tonight. The first thing you said to me was that you had a bad day and I completely dismissed you and that made me realize that I have been doing it in our relationship for a while now.”

“Waves…”

“It’s true and you know that, Nicole. We are always talking about my life and my problems. If we want to be together, we have to learn how to communicate. I love that you are always listening and you put yourself out of your way to help me. I know it can be hard and probably out of your comfort zone, but I don’t want you just to be there for me. I want you to talk to me when you have a problem and not to close yourself and change your focus on me. You are allowed to have a bad day and I want to be there for you. You are not allowed to get angry with me for no reason, though.”

“You are right on that, Waverly. I should have held myself.”

“I don’t think that’s the right thing either, Nicole. I understand that you are not perfect, love,” Waverly was getting emotional one more time. “You are smart, strong and hardworking, but you are also a person who goes through bad things. I’m not perfect either and I need to recognize it and appreciate you more. But please, let me in.”

“I’ll do it,” Nicole hugged her. “I’m sorry, Waves.”

“You can’t do that again,” Waverly tried to hold her tears. “You are the one I go to when I get sad or upset and I hate not being able to do that.”

“I’ll work to do my best to be worthy of you, Waves. You are the love of my life and I don’t want to lose you.”

“And I won’t take our relationship for granted,” Waverly touched Nicole's face.

“Can you forgive me, Waves? Can you give me another chance?”

“Come here, you big goofy,” Waverly kissed her girlfriend and Nicole finally relaxed a little after what seemed an entire lifetime. Their lips moved in a steady rhythm. Waverly spread her legs over Nicole and pressed their bodies together. They slowed the pace and soon they were touching their foreheads and breathing hard. “Please, baby, tell me what got you so mad today.”

Nicole took a deep breath and let it go slowly out of her lungs before she spoke. “Today is my uncle’s death anniversary, the one that was my friend and helped me a lot when I was a kid. I decided to call my father because they were brothers, but he didn’t care. It was stupid. I should have known better than trying to talk to him. I think deep down I knew.”

“What made you call him, baby?” Waverly asked softly.

“You inspired me,” Nicole gave her a half-smile. “Seen you get close to your family made me want that, too. Turns out, he still doesn’t care about his brother or me. Apparently, we are looking for things like those to happen to us because we decided to join forces with the system. It was foolish of me to think things could be different.”

“It’s not foolish, love. It’s not wrong to want to be with your family. I’m sorry he reacted like that. It’s his loss in the end because you are an amazing, smart and caring woman and I’m so proud of you for trying to give him another chance, even if he doesn’t deserve it. What about your mom?”

“She didn’t even want to talk to me. We were always like this, her and me. I’m so sick and tired of doing this with him though,” Nicole sighed. “It’s not like we were best friends when I was a kid, but we used to get along quite well. My heart feels like I fail with them, even if my brain knows I didn’t.”

“It’s not your fault that they don’t know how to truly appreciate you,” Waverly looked at her kindly. “I don’t want to make your decisions, but I feel like I have to say this: sometimes, the smart move is a step back. If they can’t realize how incredible you are, they don’t deserve you.”

“I think you are right,” Nicole leaned on her girlfriend.

“I’m sorry that sometimes I talk too much and don’t listen enough,” Waverly ran her hand in Nicole's hair. “It won’t happen again.”

“I had an argument with Eliza, too. I wish I could erase this whole day.”

“What about?”

“I was already angry with my parents and then I talked to Nedley and he said he wants me to be sheriff after he retires. I said that to Eliza and she reacted weirdly,” Nicole closed her eyes. “Now that I’m thinking about it, she was probably being funny like always. I didn’t understand like that at the moment and I was harsh with her.”

“Wait, you are going to be sheriff?” Waverly looked amazed. “That’s great, Nicole. You deserve this.”

“Thank you, beautiful.”

“Tomorrow you go there and apologize to her, ok? Make it better.”

“I will,” Nicole kissed the brunette on the chest. “Thank you for letting me in tonight. I know it was hard for you.”

“I’ll always open the door for you, Nicole. I love you. I want to grow up and grow old next to you.”

“I love you, too. I’ll always work to be my best self for you.”

 

Waverly couldn’t help but smile. It was their first fight and it had hurt, but somehow they managed to survive from it. They were going to work to be better to each other, set some boundaries and that gave her the feeling that they were strong enough for being together for more than a lifetime.

 

 

Who said it's true

That the growing only happens on your own?

They don't know me and you

You don't ever have to leave

If to change is what you need

You can change right next to me

When you're high, I'll take the lows

You can ebb and I can flow

And we'll take it slow

And grow as we go

 

Ben Platt (2019)