Chapter 1: Nightlight
Post "Night Crawler" (references to abduction, torture).
by Amy L. Hull
Only a month ago, Amanda had drifted off on Lee's couch and kissed him blearily without coming fully awake.
Tonight when Lee had switched on the bathroom light around the corner, she'd sprung from deep sleep to her feet in an instant, eyes unnaturally wide, breath coming in desperate gasps.
"Amanda?" Lee held her tensed shoulders as she scanned the room frantically until awareness returned. "He's not here. It's just me." His thumb moved gently against her neck
"Yeah. Okay. I'm sorry."
He eased her down and wrapped his arms around her still-shuddering body, murmuring soothing nonsense through clenched teeth.
Chapter 2: Sense Memory
For Spilleta42, who wanted Amanda King, chicken salad
Billy set a bag on Amanda's paperwork. "I'm heading out, but I brought dinner."
"Thank you, sir. Good night." Amanda unwrapped her sandwich and took a bite, still writing. A chill shot down her neck. Sweat suffused her body. Her stomach and throat spasmed and she ran.
She felt Lee place a damp paper towel on her neck as she leaned over the toilet. "Amanda? Are you okay?"
She breathed slowly. "Chicken salad. Haven't had any since Retzik."
Lee stroked her back, offered a cup of water.
She smiled weakly. "At least I managed my own stomach pump this time."
Chapter 3: Speed and Urgency
For Besyd, who wanted car chase, Amanda driving
"Don't let 'em get away."
"I have them in sight, and the net is closing ahead."
"Turn here." He pointed. "Cut them off."
"Lee, sit quietly. I know what I'm doing."
"Better. I taught you." He chuckled, then coughed. "Make sure Billy knows--" Another cough.
"He's on it."
Lee's head lolled.
Amanda grabbed his hand, squeezed. "Stay with me. We're almost there."
She accelerated, herding the suspect's SUV. In sight of the federal vehicles and agents, it lost control and skidded into a light pole.
Ambulance workers emerged, running for the crash.
Amanda shouted, "Over here first! Agent down!"
Chapter 4: Married Spy Housing
For besyd, who wanted post-series and no stupid secret marriage.
Dotty stirred her coffee. "So...when are you moving in, Lee?"
Lee's cup clattered onto the saucer, dark liquid spilling as he coughed.
The smile that spread across her face was like one from a Chuck Jones cartoon. "Well, you two are married, and most couples do live together, and Lee has that tiny little condo, and the boys are in the middle of school..."
"We really haven't thought--"
"Amanda, darling, that's why I brought it up." She stood, kissed Amanda, and patted her hand where it lay on Lee's thigh. "I'll leave you two to figure it out."
Chapter 5: Peace On Earth
For besyd, who wanted winter.
The room was lit only by the tree's lights and the crackling fire. Lee poured from an ornate bottle into tiny, frozen glasses, then handed one to each.
"An East German gave me this vodka in 1975, told me to save it till we were allies, then we would have a toast." He set the bottle down, lifted his glass. "He's dead, but last month the wall came down, so, to Wolf."
"To Ivan and Dimitri, wherever they are," Amanda added.
"To glasnost," Phillip said.
"To disarmament," Jamie murmured.
"To peace." Dotty's eyes glistened.
The glasses clinked together like bells.
Chapter 6: Smell of Caffeine In the Morning
For Constance, who wanted Lee, Amanda, iced coffee, kiss.
"Good morning." Amanda held a styrofoam cup. "Hot, untainted motor oil."
"Thanks." Lee drained half the liquid, then pointed and frowned. "What is that?"
"Trying something new." Amanda lifted her cup, topped with chocolate drizzles on white fluff. "Iced mocha blended coffee." She took a drink, trying not to giggle at Lee's grimace.
Lee leaned in, sucked whipped cream from her upper lip, then covered her mouth, tasting the coffee and chocolate lingering on her tongue. His tongue traced her teeth, and he smiled against her mouth, saying, "It may not be coffee, but I could get used to it."
Chapter 7: Walk With Me
written for Anne in the help_haiti challenge
"You're telling me you just...grabbed my daughter randomly at a train station?"
"Mother, Lee's mission had gone bad. He had no backup. He could have been killed." Amanda's throat tightened, roughening her voice. Lee's arm went around her. "So he recruited me."
Dotty pointed. "I've told you: Dotty. Wait." Her eyes narrowed. "Wasn't that dangerous? And...grabbed her how?"
Amanda patted his hand on her elbow. "He put his arm around me, just like this, and said, 'Walk with me.'"
Dotty gaped. "That's it?"
"Yes." Amanda kissed him, then leaned on his shoulder. "And I have, ever since."