You get there too late to stop her. All there is to see is the sky drifting by through the open cargo bay door. You feel as though your stomach has leapt out of the plane alongside Simmons. In a way it's a good thing though, because you're sure that if you were still in possession of your stomach you would definitely have thrown up by now from the sheer force of the panic coursing through you. Simmons would probably be able to tell you exactly why you feel that way and explain it using fancy words for hormones, but Simmons isn't there to do that. She's currently hurtling towards the ocean from however many feet up they are. Fitz could probably use the distance and Simmons' body mass to calculate the force of the impact, thankfully he's too busy worrying about his friend to do so; you really don't think you need to hear that information.
You know the anti-serum works. You know that Ward will save your favourite biochemist but you also know that your heart had currently frozen and wouldn't resume it's duties until Simmons was back safe and sound on the bus, where she belonged. You hear through the Comms that Ward has got her and administered the anti-serum. You know May started to land the plane the second you all realised what was happening so it shouldn't take too long to get them back. In fact it takes less than an hour for them to get back to the bus but it was the longest hour of your life. It might as well have been a full day, or a few days.
When they get back Coulson wants to see them in his office immediately. You think to yourself that he better take it easy on Simmons. What she did, stupid as it might have been, was selfless. Knowing Simmons she was probably beating herself up as it was. It takes another 20 minutes before you get to see her. Your heart starts beating again the second you lay eyes on her. It beats exceptionally fast, as if it's trying to make up for the missed beats. She still looks a bit under the weather and her eyes are still red from a combination of crying and the sea water but she's never looked more beautiful.
“Hello Skye,” she greets you cheerfully like always, like she hasn't just jumped out of a plane without a parachute and almost literally scared you to death. You try to return the greeting but your mouth isn't working just yet. Instead your feet carry you hurriedly towards her and your arms wrap themselves around her tightly, just to make sure she's really there. When you feel her small and still slightly damp body pressed against your own you finally believe she's safe.
“Don't ever do that to me again!” You tell her sternly now that your mouth is once again obeying orders from your brain. You really don't want to let her go but you release her slightly, holding her at arms length and inspecting her for injuries; there are none, maybe a mark where Ward injected her but you can't see underneath her clothes. If that's the only mark she has you'll take it.
“I'm sorry,” she says in a small voice and you forgive her immediately.
“You scared me,” you admit quietly in her ear as you hug her close to you once more.
Before the whole jumping out of a plane thing you had been vaguely aware of your growing feelings for Simmons. Obviously you found her attractive from the moment you met, you would have to be blind not to, but the more time you spent with her the more the initial attractive developed into a little crush which, of course, you did your best to ignore. You figured in time it would go away or you would get used to it. Now though, after experiencing the fear of losing her, you no longer have the luxury of pretending it's just a little crush. You can't pretend that you only care about her as a friend any more; you know you have a full blown, raging set of feelings for the beautiful biochemist. You have considered telling her how you feel; sometimes you allow yourself to believe there's an off chance that she might reciprocate or at the very least not run away screaming and avoid you for as long as you both work together. You catch her looking at you sometimes when you're stealing glances of her in the lab. Sometimes you think she's flirting with you, but knowing Jemma it's most likely accidental; she's not exactly good at the whole flirting thing. You decide you're not ready to tell her about your feelings just yet, you're not quite ready to face any consequences that might come from telling her. Not so soon after almost losing her. So you settle for keeping her safe and in doing so spending as much time as you can just basking in her innate Jemma-ness. Everyday you add another reason to the long list of things you love about her. Wait, love? You mean like! Or at least that's what you tell yourself; you can't possibly love her, not yet anyway.
You now spend most of your time in the lab with FitzSimmons, always close enough to Simmons that you can catch her if she trips or to pull her out of the way should she spill anything of unknown origin. You're not taking any chances. You don't let her anywhere near the cargo bay if you can help it. If she absolutely must be there then you make sure you're firmly planted between her and the door. If Simmons notices your current over-protectiveness she doesn't mention it, although you have gotten a few strange looks from Fitz.
You take any opportunity you can get to be around her, you'd be a fool not to. You find yourself watching Doctor Who and documentaries that usually involve someone or something being cut open. It's worth it just to feel her pressed into your side as you squeeze into your tiny bunk with the laptop resting on your knees. On occasion the two of you have accidentally fallen asleep mid-marathon only to wake a while later resting on each other's shoulders. It take less than a week before you suggest lying down to watch movies because it will be more comfortable should they end up asleep. You feel a fantastic fluttering feeling in your stomach when you wake up with her head resting on your chest. It makes you reconsider telling her how you feel just so you could have the chance to do this every night. The more logical, and possibly cowardly, side of your brain always decides against it though because the risk of losing the few nights does not seem worth it.
“Skye! Skye, Wake up!” you hear her voice in your ear shouting frantically. Your eyes snap open and find your favourite pair of stunning hazel eyes looking down into them. You realise then that you were having a nightmare and you breathe a sigh of relief that it wasn't real. It takes you a few seconds to compose yourself and push yourself up into a sitting position.
“Are you alright?” she asks, that cute accent of hers sounding so concerned.
“Yeah, fine. I'm sorry. I didn't mean to wake you,” you apologise, pushing your hair out of your face.
“Don't worry about it,” she says, rubbing your arm gently, it's so soothing. “What were you dreaming?”
“It was nothing,” you try to shrug it off because you really don't want to tell her you were dreaming about her.
“Skye,” she draws your name out pleadingly. “Come on, please talk to me!”
“It was about you, ok?” you admit because even though you don't want to tell her you can't deny her something when she asks you with that puppy dog expression.
“Oh,” she says quietly. “What-"
“The day you jumped,” you answer, anticipating her question. “I dream that you jump and I'm the one who jumps out after you but I don't get to you in time.”
“You dream, meaning you've had this dream before?” she asks hesitantly. You see pain in her beautiful eyes and you wish you'd kept your mouth shut.
“I don't like calling it a dream, it's a nightmare but yeah, on and off since it happened,” you shrug; might as well keep up with the honesty. She gives a small sniff and you realise it's actually a sob. Your arms reach out and pull her into you and you feel a tear hitting your shoulder; you think your heart might break.
“I'm so sorry!” she whimpers and you rub soothing circles on her back.
“What are you sorry for?” you ask her, feeling all kinds of confused.
“For causing you nightmares, of course!” she sniffs. “I didn't think there was any other option. I was a hazard, volatile, about to explode and take the plane and everyone on it out with me. It was the only thing I could think of to save you. If I had to die, I couldn't bare to take you with me!”
The way she's looking at you while she explains tells you unequivocally that she's referring to you specifically and not the whole team. You're heart stops again, but this time it's exhilarating instead of terrifying.
“If dying was the only way to save you then I had to do it,” she finishes, sighing like she feels lighter after her confession. A moment of silence passes between you and you notice she's watching you for a reaction. A small chuckle escapes your lips and she looks at you in a combination of fear and utter confusion.
“You know for a super genius you can be pretty damn stupid sometimes,” you tell her, shaking you head.
“Excuse me?” she practically gasps. That probably wasn't the reaction she imagined getting.
“Jumping might have saved my life, but losing you probably would have killed me,” you tell her, taking her hands in yours and looking directly into those beautiful hazel eyes.
“When you jumped my heart honestly stopped beating from the second you were gone until I saw you again. I'm no expert but I don't think people usually last very long without a beating heart.”
“Skye,” she makes that little exasperated noise that you find so adorable. “Your heart didn't actually stop beating, if anything it would have been beating faster due to the release of adrenaline and noradrenaline into your system from the shock...” she begins to babble but you cut her off because you figure it's now or never to tell her how you feel.
“It's my heart so I think I should know what it was doing, Doctor Simmons,” you tease. “But let's not argue about the science,” this comment earns you a quiet giggle from her, “what I am trying to say is that yes, I might have been alive but it wouldn't have been worth losing you. I don't know how I would have lived without you. Or how I would have lived with myself knowing I picked the absolute worst time to realise that it wasn't just a little crush I had on you, that it was something way more. Jem, how could I have lived knowing I never got the chance to tell you? To see if maybe you felt the same way-”
You can't speak any more because Jemma's lips being pressed against yours. They're warm and soft and faintly vanilla flavoured and gone way to soon. When she pulls back you open and close your mouth a few times, you swear your lips tingle from the kiss but you don't say it out loud because you know you'll only end up hearing another scientific explanation and right now there are far more important things you need to hear her say.
“My one regret as I, you know,” she takes a deep breath, “plummeted towards earth was that I was going to die without ever knowing what it was like to kiss you!” she offers you a weak smile.
“Don't think that now you know what it's like that you can go ahead and do something else stupid and dangerous!” you warn her and she laughs lifting the mood. “Because I'm going to need at least...infinity more of those kisses before I can go without any regrets!”
“Infinity? Really?” she raises that eyebrow at you and her gaze falls to your lips, it makes your stomach clench. “Let's get started on infinity then,” she says softly as she leans in to kiss you again. This kiss is more confident, firmer and absolutely amazing. It's followed by more kisses, kisses that get more and more passionate each time until you're grasping at each other's bodies, pulling each other closer because you need to feel her pressed against you to know that this is real. When you break apart again you're lips feel naked without hers pressed firmly against them. One of you remembers that it's the middle of the night and you have to get up early to train with May so you settle back down in the bed, sharing a few softer kisses. She rests her head on your chest as you squeeze together in your bunk and you sigh contently and wish you had saved you both some time and just kissed her the minute you safe her safe and sound on the Bus. Oh well, kisses from Jemma Simmons were certainly worth the wait.