The first plan was to wait for Barb.
Unfortunately, that would imply either leaving the three Chimera employees home alone, leaving Curt or Owen alone with the Chimera employees (out of the question), giving Barb their location and risking not only whoever was supposed to pick her up but everyone else as well, or bringing everybody along and risking their entire mission.
The first option won by process of elimination, rather than anything else. It required a certain level of trust, but it required significantly less trust than the other options and reduced the risk factor, though admittedly not by much.
The only one of them who posed a physical risk was Henri, and he honestly seemed to have better things to do. He always gave that impression.
Hope seemed harmless, but Curt and Owen were painfully aware of how little an innocent look means in the spy world.
Damon was a scientist, which posed problems in and of itself, and apparently brave enough to carve a tracker out of his own damn arm, which was unexpected, but he seemed to be utterly incompetent with technology, as he hadn’t been able to disarm the trackers, only leave them behind.
All this to say, they might as well risk it. They may have been outnumbered, but Curt and Owen were by no means outpowered. The notion comforted them slightly as they drove out to pick up Barb. The road stretched before them, quiet and almost friendly, and the sun was warm on Owen’s side.
Curt was driving, of course. His driving was horrendous, but at least he didn’t accidentally begin to drive on the wrong side of the road when his mind wandered. Had they been in Britain, Owen would have driven, but in America, as a general rule of thumb, he let Curt drive.
Curt glanced at him for a moment: “So, I’ve been thinking-”
“Shut it, Carvour. This is important.” he glared, “Like I said, I’ve been thinking about that girl you shot.”
Owen thought he could feel his soul leave his body when he sighed: “Curt, not this again-”
“No, no, I’m not here to scold you.” Curt laughed, almost awkwardly, “I promise. No, I was thinking about her and Hope.”
“ Curt !!”
“Would you let me finish?”
That time he burst out laughing uncontrollably, his dark eyes flitting all over the place and his cheeks flushing.
Oh. He’s trying to be sincere. Oh boy.
“What… Okay, I won’t interrupt you again, love. What is it?” he asked, trying his hardest to be sweet. It helped Curt.
Curt tutted something and shook his head.
“It’s stupid…” he mumbled.
“No no no, Curt, you don’t get to weasel your way out of this one. What?”
It weighed heavy on their heads, for about twenty seconds; long enough to make both of them uncomfortable, but not so long that Owen was willing to intervene. Finally, Curt huffed out a hot breath: “Well, their whole… thing. It got me thinking. You and I, we can’t get married. That’s never been an option for us.”
“No…” murmured Owen.
“And maybe it never will be. Legally, we can’t be married. But I was just… I was thinking, since when do we follow the law?”
“Curt... “ he whispered, “Are you saying-”
“I’m saying…” Curt interrupted him, “That, if I had the option to, I would marry you. So, my question is not will you marry me , because God only knows if that will ever be a thing. But… would you marry me, Owen? If you could?”
The answer came as easy as breathing.
“Yes.” he laughed, “God, Curt, yes! In a heartbeat!!”
“Good!” snorted Curt, nodding vigorously, “Good, good, I just- I don’t… every time I wake up in this timeline, every day, I’m afraid that I’ll wake up in a world where you’re not there.”
His voice cracked: “And I- I don’t know if that will happen. I really don’t. But, Owen, I never got the chance to ask you this question then. I didn’t think I had as little time as I did. Now I know better. I know that… that this will not last forever, even if I never return to the other timeline again. But, while it does, I just- however many days I have left with you, I want… you know.”
He did know.
“Curt. I want to spend them with you, too.”
Curt nodded through the tears: “Yeah. Yeah, you read my mind, honey.”
“Starting with the married pet names already, are we Curt?”
“When else am I gonna start?” Curt choked back a sob with a laugh, “This is our wedding.”
“Yeah. When else?”
“Pull over, Curt.”
“Alright.” Curt gave him an odd look, but complied anyway. Once the car was parked, he turned to Owen with something akin to fear in his eyes: “What’s this ab-”
He never finished the sentence. Owen sprang from his seat and dragged him back into a kiss, supporting Curt by the waist so as not to jostle his knee.
When he pulled back, Curt was sobbing even more: “What- what the fuck, Carvour?”
“You wanted a wedding.” Owen smiled, running a hand up and down his lover- or, husband’s back: “I figured that it would hardly be a wedding without a kiss. It was a way to seal deals, you know.”
“I know that, you bastard!” cried Curt, punching his shoulder half-heartedly before sinking into his chest: “But then, uh- then, shouldn’t the vows come first?”
“Oh, dear.” murmured Owen, “You’re right, darling. I’ll start.”
He cleared his throat, much to Curt’s amusement: “Curt Mega. Former agent.” he started, putting on his best posh attitude, which made Curt cackle almost maniacally, “I have felt something for you ever since you walked into my mission with that attitude of yours. Granted, at the time, that something was pure contempt.”
“I believe we used to have a bit of a rivalry, right, love? We kept scores and tallies of the strangest things. Shortest successful rescue mission. Cleanest behavioural record. Amount of enemies who wet their pants. I take no credit for the latter.”
“No regrets.” mumbled Curt.
“But, eventually, we stopped comparing scores and started to add them on to each other instead. A bit like us. It used to be you and me. Slowly, though, that and melted away and it was just… us. And you’ve been a pain in the neck the whole time, which is truly a testament to how much I love you.”
Curt masked a sob with laughter: “You fucker.”
“So, former agent Curt Mega, I suppose what I’m saying is… given that no matter how hard you try to annoy me I still love you more than air, will you stay with me and be my air for the rest of our days?”
“What a stupid question.” Curt mumbled, “ I was the one who proposed three minutes ago. Of course I will.”
“Oh, goody gumdrops.”
“Never say that again.”
“Okay, my turn.” Curt cleared his throat and sat back, without letting go of Owen’s hand: “Owen fucking Carvour, you limey bastard. What to say?”
“Excellent start, my dear.”
“Thank you. So, you are a pain in the ass and always were and yet, much like you apparently, I just can’t seem to get sick of you. I met you in two timelines and loved both of you until it hurt. But you don’t make it hurt. In fact, I can’t seem to find the energy to kick your ass here, which is an improvement. So, ready to be shackled to me for the rest of our miserable existence and beyond?”
“A… and beyond , dear?”
“If I die first, I will haunt you and, let me make it very clear, I expect the same of any man who would call himself my husband.” declared Curt, “So, if you meet that requirement, by all means. Be my husband.”
“Deal.” smiled Owen, “May I kiss the groom?”
The deal was sealed with a kiss and Barb simply assumed that they looked so giddy at seeing her because she was bringing reinforcements.