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"JOHN!" She screamed and reached for him.

It had been years since he'd been there; not since they were teenagers and he'd still allow her to creep into his bed and cling to him at night. Then he'd gone and joined the military. Then she'd taken the job on Mars. It had been bad enough when he'd left her for Basic Training. She missed him like she missed a limb. She thought she was ready for the separation. She'd been wrong. Being on another planet left a hole in her that no amount of work could fill. It was a terrible awful vacuum in her soul. Ten years of emptiness. Ten years of trying to explain to the few lovers she had that John was her brother and she had nightmares about losing him. It never ended well.

But ten years had passed and now he was there. He was always there. A warm solid presence at her side that wrapped around her, scaring away whatever monsters or fears lurked in her nightmares with his warm hands and solid presence.

"Shhh, Sam. I'm here."

He pressed a gentle kiss to her forehead, but it wasn't enough. She groped in the dark to cup his cheek. She tilted her head up, her mouth desperately seeking his. When she found his lips, she kissed him hard, needing to confirm that he was really there. Alive. Whole. Hers.

He didn't respond right away. He never did. He always waited, as if expecting her to come to her senses and realize that it was her brother she was kissing. But she pressed on as always. She knew what she needed. She knew who she needed. It didn't matter to her that they were brother and sister or that they'd been estranged for years. They were together now, like they were always meant to be. They needed each other. This was what she wanted. This was right. The time stretched as she kissed him and reveled in the rough scrape of stubble against her skin.

His body slowly relaxed. Once her silent entreaty reached him, once he was sure that she wanted it, he would kiss her gently. It was always gentle, like she was made of spun glass, like she was the most fragile beautiful thing in the world.

While her desperate kisses helped her realize that they were both alive, his soft ones reminded her that she was loved. She pressed her hand to his heart, feeling the steady beat under her palm. She raised her eyes to her brother's in the dark. She couldn't see him, not really, but she knew that he could see her clearly. "I love you," she whispered, pressing her forehead to his. He nodded and she could picture his stoic expression in her mind. He smiled more these days, now that they were together again, but his face still fell back into that calm stoic expression. She didn't mind. It told her that he wasn't just another gun toting grunt, that he was deep in thought, rolling things over in his mind until he came up with a conclusion that satisfied him. She was so glad that that part of him was still there, that the military hadn't wiped that way.

"I love you too, Sam." His hand ran down her spine and rested the small of her back, tugging her as close as he could. He rested his head on her shoulder, inhaling the scent of her hair as their legs tangled together. "I love you too."

She sighed as he body relaxed once more, knowing she was safe in her brother's arms. "Don't leave me."

His arms tightened around her. "I'm not going anywhere," he promised gruffly.

She nodded. She believed him. Their years of waking up to emptiness was over. He was there and she was there, right where they were both supposed to be. It was knowing that he'd continue to be there, that he'd never leave her, that he'd always be there to fight off the monsters, that allowed her to fall back asleep in the safety of his arms.