Had the shower been bigger the three women might have even shared that, because they’re all past caring about modesty now and it’s hard for any of them to be alone. But when they saw it would barely fit one of them at a time, Skye instead volunteered to go first, to be the first to face having only her thoughts for company, and let Melinda give Jemma a chance to talk to her alone, because they don’t want to push her, but sooner or later they’re going to have to know what happened to her in the Hub.
She’s uncomfortably aware that of the six of them, she’s suffering the least. Phil even commented to her early on it looked like she was right about S.H.I.E.L.D. back when she’d been attacking them on the airwaves. Skye never thought it was possible to hate being right so much. Phil has also told her they might have to contact her old friends from the Rising Tide if they can find them. Skye doesn’t know if they would actually be willing to help or if they would insist on viewing all members of a fallen organization as equally guilty in its wrongdoings; many of them could go either way. And she’s dreading the prospect of hearing them gloat. This whole thing has forced her to face how much the last few months have changed her.
And even if she didn’t dedicate her whole life to S.H.I.E.L.D. the way they all did, she’s still feeling it, learning the truth of the organization she’d been so proud to become an agent of for a scant few days, before the world had shattered. One glorious month of being sure there was somewhere she belonged, a family she’d had all her life without knowing it, and now ripped brutally away from her. She thinks often of that agent who died to protect her; she wants to still think she was a good person, at least, who hadn’t been aware of the Hydra in her organization. But she can’t even be certain of that. Maybe Hydra had rescued her for their own nefarious purposes.
She showers as quickly as she can, but she’s still in there long enough to think not only of all of that, but too much about Grant. She supposes it’s a good thing he’s gotten attached to all of them the way he has; she doesn’t want to think about what it wouldn’t been like for him if he’d still been the lone wolf connected to the world only by his loyalty to S.H.I.E.L.D. But she’s pretty sure of all of them he’s by far suffering the worst, even more than Phil.
She comes out of the bathroom to find Jemma in tears, and Melinda awkwardly trying to comfort her. “I think you’ve told me enough tonight,” she says gently. “Go and shower now. We’ll both be waiting out here.” When Jemma’s gone into the bathroom and they can hear the shower running, she says, “You should take her back to the men as soon as she’s out of there. Don’t make her wait here for me.”
Skye doesn’t protest. She may not like the idea of Melinda being left all alone in the motel room, but she knows she can take of herself. She at least had a little forewarning about what was going on, more than the rest of them did. “What did she say? Or should I not ask?”
“You shouldn’t ask yet, I think,” said Melinda. “Let her at least tell Fitz first.”
“Fair enough,” said Skye, and they lapse into silence. Exhausted she sits down on the bed next to where Melinda is sitting, grabs the hairbrush off the table(missing half its spokes but they’re lucky to have it), and feebly tries to get her hair in order. After a moment or so’s hesitation, the other woman reaches over and places a hand on her back, an unspoken moment of comfort.
Jemma takes so long in the shower Skye starts to worry, but she comes out clean, dressed, and not looking like she’s about to have a complete breakdown, so even if she still looks deeply haunted Skye counts that as a win. “Come on,” she says to her warmly, getting up. “Let’s go back to the others.”
“But...” she starts, “Agent May...”
“I’ll be all right,” responds Melinda. “You know that.”
Jemma says no more there, or during the short walk to the men’s room. Skye does a special rhythmic knock and Leo answers the door. He barely looks at the two of them before whimpers Jemma’s name and he hasn’t stopped hugging her at every opportunity yet. The shower is running, and it must be Phil, because Grant’s on the beds they’ve already pushed together, clearly asleep.
Good. With an extra room available Skye has plans for him tonight, plans she had since they fled the plane, but they both need to nap first. Jemma is whispering something to Leo, and Skye leaves them to it in favor of lying down herself and closing her eyes.
When she wakes up all six of them are in the room. Grant woke up before her; he’s standing at the room’s small window looking out. Jemma is lying on the other bed, sandwiched between Phil and Melinda, watching while Leo struggles with the room’s tiny TV. Skye admires his dedication considering that while CNN would give them information that might prove the difference between life and death, having to actually watch it is torture for all of them. Ironically both Fox and MSNBC would both be worse, if for very different reasons.
“Grant,” she says softly, and he turns around, still looking a little perturbed by her using his first name, though she’s made clear she’s doing it for all of them and why, and they seem to respect her reasons. “I want to talk to you. Alone.”
“Talk or have sex with?” Melinda asks.
“Both,” she replies quite frankly, because keeping this a secret would probably be a bad idea anyway. Even if Grant opens his mouth to object, but she cuts him off: “Look, I think at this point S.H.I.E.L.D. regulations really don’t matter anymore, and you’re not in any position of power over me anymore either.”
“I wouldn’t absolutely assume that,” he argues.
“Talk about it in the other room,” she insists, and takes his hand and starts leading him out-not that fast, so he can resist if he really wants to, and Phil can object too if he wants to. But he doesn’t, and Phil doesn’t, and on the contrary, Melinda says, “Here, I stole this at the Hub, while we were lost and went past the med bay. Thought you two might need it especially,” and tosses them a condom.
“Thanks,” says Skye, trying to convey how deeply she appreciates that. She would've been willing to just do oral sex if they had to, but the thought of having Grant inside her, hot and hard and perfect, is enough to make her wet already.
When they get there, he says, “We’re not going to necessarily be on the run for the rest of our lives. I have hopes of eventually getting out of this. I highly doubt we’re the only good S.H.I.E.L.D. people left alive in the world; some of them must have survived. Even if Nick Fury is dead-and we’ve heard the allegations otherwise-we know Maria Hill is alive, and I think it’s more likely than not Steve Rogers is. Sooner or later I think we’re going to get into contact with one of them, and then we’ll have someone to work for again, and there’s going to be a lot of work rooting Hydra and Centipede both out. Even if they are the same organization-which we’re not yet sure of-we might spend our whole lives doing it.”
“You don’t think things are going to be exactly the same as they were?” Skye sighs. “I know it’s easier and less stressful to imagine they would be, that once this phase of our careers is over it’s all hunky dory pick up where we left off, just with different bosses and different targets. But Grant, life doesn’t work that way. You should know that. I know that. Even if there is some sort of new organization like S.H.I.E.L.D. eventually formed to replace it, or even if it itself is reformed, we are not going to be the same. They are not going to be the same.”
“That still doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to do this.”
“But you need to,” she says, bracing herself for an indignant response.
But his is just confused. “Why? On the contrary, I’m letting my feelings for you affect me too much. Skye, I murdered a man I had no justification to kill, because I got so clouded with my emotions I didn’t stop and think. We all should’ve waited and then he would’ve still been alive when we realized he wasn’t the Clairvoyant. S.H.I.E.L.D.’s regulations are in place exactly to prevent things like that happening.”
“Then the damage has been done,” she shrugs. “How much worse would you really get if you decided you might as well get something out of this? Something you need right now. Hell, something I need too. Surely, Grant, you’ve noticed how much better Leo’s been since he had Jemma back. I think if she can recover from whatever they did to her, they’re going to cope with this much better than the rest of us, because they didn’t lose their very first loyalty in life. S.H.I.E.L.D. was only their second loyalty.”
“And you don’t think whoever we join up with in the future should be our primary loyalty.” But not only is it not a question, but he sounds like he agrees with her.
“Not until there are a lot more people around us that we feel we can trust.”
“But you trust me?” And he sounds confused again.
She’s not surprised, and she prepared to talk about this too. “Grant, I’m pretty sure if you were a traitor, we’d all be dead by now. In fact, though I suppose there’s a chance Jemma’s been planted on us, that’s kind of hard to believe, especially given how many of her injuries were definitely not faked, so right now, I’m willing to trust all five of you again. Until further notice.” She tries to grin while adding this last bit.
But it’s impossible when she sees how he sags in relief, so much he has to sit down on the bed, confirming what she already feared, and she finds herself saying, “You need to get that through your head, Grant. Even if we don’t have sex right now, I want you to walk out of here believing I trust you, we all care for you, and unless I’m wrong about you and you do turn on us, you have all of us. Please...” She sits down next to him as her voice started to choke, and puts an arm around him, but he just sits there, unresponsive. “Please, Grant. Let us care for you. Let me love you.”
When he still doesn’t respond she starts kissing him, his mouth, his forehead, his hair, his ear. “Please talk to me, Grant,” she whispered, then stops to breathe in his scent. How much has she dreamed of caressing him like this, all the while knowing she never would, that he would never allow such things to happen between him and someone who had been subordinate to him, until that stopped mattering? The love rising within her is so strong it’s hard to keep her head together, to not start kissing him and never stop. But she can’t yet. Not until he speaks.
“I’m not right anymore.” His voice is rough, so full of pain it breaks her heart. “I knew what I was doing in life. I knew it was right. Or thought I knew. And then you happened, and then Lorelai happened, and then this happened, and I don’t know what to do.”
“What do you want to do right now?” she asks, still whispering, though her heart hammers awaiting his answer.
After another pause, it turns out to be, “To be honest? I want to cover us both with this blanket and keep you there for....where you’d be safe and no one can hurt you, and I can touch you and make you happy, at least for a little while. I wouldn’t mind staying there permanently except I want to keep the others all safe too. But you especially.”
Skye breathes in to tell him that’s the right answer, but then he continues. “I want to die for you all. I want my death to end this. I want to sacrifice myself in such a way that it eliminates what’s threatening us. Or at least take a bullet for you.”
“Grant,” she sobs into his neck. This, too, is what she had feared. Not that he would die for her; she knew already he'd die for any of them. But that he would want to, so his own problems would be solved, that she can’t stand. “I don’t want you to leave me. Please, can I be enough for you? Can I and the others, who all want you with us, can we be enough for you?”
“I don’t know,” and now he sounds terrified. “I’ve never...Skye, I’ve never been in love in my life.”
“But you love me now?” She needs to hear him say it, suddenly. Even though she’s been pretty sure of it for weeks, even when she feared he’d betrayed them she still thought he did. She needs this confirmation.
And she gets it. “Yes,” he growls. “I love you,” and then suddenly she’s on her back and he’s kissing her hard, hands tangling themselves in her hair before moving down, and she barely gets her shirt off before his mouth follows, still hissing, “I love you, I love you, I love you,” again and again, making it his mantra as he frantically kisses his way down her chest, hands dipping down to stroke where the shots from Quinn have left her scarred, then nuzzling between her breasts before struggling with her bra.
“You get the condom,” she manages, pointing vaguely to where she’d put it when she’d sat down with him. “I’ll take care of the bra, since we really can’t damage it right now.” Indeed, he starts pulling his clothes off as he goes for it, and she does the same, and they’re both pretty much naked by the time he climbs back onto the bed, her name on his lips, eyes dark with want and desperation.
It’s desperate from both of them as they kiss again, involuntarily noises of protest coming from her when he pulls away, before his mouth is on her breasts and his hand is sliding between her legs where she’s so, so wet. She’s surging up into even before his head drops further, and when his tongue finds her clit all she can do is moan.
Time loses all meaning, everything falls away except his mouth and hands. She becomes aware the hand not inside her is stroking at her scars, but she can’t think. It’s been so long since anyone’s touched her at all and she builds up so fast, much as she never wants it to end she can’t hold out, and then she’s shaking, possibly screaming with how good it feels but she can’t be sure, body still throbbing even when she comes down.
She’s still dazed when Grant pulls himself up and whispers, “Sorry. I couldn’t wait. Under the covers now.”
There are an awkward few moments while they scramble to get there, then as he slides in under them she slides in on top of him and whispers, “My turn,” and she has to push the blankets aside for that but he doesn’t protest. She doesn’t have the patience to go as slow as she’d like, but she takes a moment to just press her face against his chest and breathe him in deeper, feel how much she wants this, and then again as she finds a spot on his side that makes him gasp and whimper. Her fingers trace the scars she finds, she presses quick kisses to him and with each one thinks Mine. I’ve lost much of what I’ve had in this world, but this man is mine. And I’m his.
When she moves her head towards his dick, though, he stops her, saying apologetically, “Do that and I’ll come and won’t be able to fuck you.”
“Can’t have that,” she agrees, and rolls off him as he gets the condom on. It makes him smile, and she smiles back, and the desperation still in the air eases. “Mine,” she whispers to him, almost exulting in it, as he climbs on top of her, and pulls the blankets up with him. In the limited light she can barely make out his face, but then he presses his head to her neck and she can feel his pants against her skin, and his whisper of “Yours...” as he pushes in.
The blankets tumble completely over their heads as they find their rhythm, and Skye closes her eyes and lets herself just feel, her arms finding his back and she pulls him close, trying with every thrust to get him deeper in, to mold him to her further. He feels so good enough inside her, on top of her, pressed against her everywhere. He grunts a little as he thrusts harder, and that feels so perfect his name comes from her again, and again, and again, and she can’t stop, “Grant....Grant....my Grant...yes, yes, give it to me...” And he does. She can feel him putting his entire body into it, giving her everything he has, everything he is. He whispers her name one last time when at last he reaches his limit, his body shuddering with release before sagging against her, and she just wraps her hands around his head and cradles him, feeling completely safe and happy in a way she almost feared she never would again.
She’s not sure when they drift off, but she wakes up first, then wakes him as she tries to squirm free, at least enough to see the time. It’s about 10:30. “We should get back to the others,” he says regretfully.
“I gotta shower first,” she groans, and then again as he pulls out; falling asleep with him still inside her had not been the best idea, and now she’ll be lucky if she isn’t at least a little sore in the morning. “You should too. We might not get the chance again once we leave this place.”
“Okay, but we should be quick. They’ll get worried. I’m surprised May hasn’t come looking for us.”
Leo managed to get the TV working, but he and Jemma are both asleep when she and Grant walk back in, her in his arms, and both of them still between Phil and Melinda, who are watching. “We miss anything?” Grant asks.
“Not much,” says Phil. “Enough happened in the Crimea today that CNN wasn’t able to talk about us nearly as much as they wanted to. They’re planning to have a so-called ‘expert’ on S.H.I.E.L.D. that I’ve never heard of be interviewed in the 11 o’clock hour, but I think we’d get just as much out of watching Stewart and Colbert.”
“Let’s then,” said Skye, “or at least let’s switch between the channels.” That was much more bearable than watching CNN nonstop.
“If he seems particularly stupid, maybe,” said Phil, and made no protest when she pressed herself against him when lying down.
Grant did the same on her other side. She took his hand, relaxed when he didn’t fight it, and braced herself as she turned her attention to the TV.