Here there be dragons

by faithinthepoor

The door stood before her like an impenetrable barrier imbued with properties far stronger than wood and metal. It was a portal, the access to a different world and she was reluctant to cross the threshold as it may have resulted in an irrevocable change to her life. She wasn’t sure how long she had been standing there trying to will her hand to make contact but the action of knocking was beyond her, her ambivalence manifesting itself as a loss of control of motor function – she repeatedly raised her arm and even managed to make a fist but the signals required to move her hand towards the door somehow had been lost in transit. She knew that she couldn’t linger forever, Wisteria Lane was not the sort of place where loitering on your neighbour’s stoop went unnoticed. She had decided that the more prudent course of action was to return home and wage her inner battles there. She turned and began to head down the stairs but paused as she noticed her shadow alter, knowing only one thing could have caused the shaft of light that now apparently backlit her, but she did not turn around as though if she failed to acknowledge the situation, it might go away.

“So you are just going to leave?” Lynette’s voice wasn’t accusing, she sounded bemused.

“How long have you known I was standing there?” she was pleased to note that her own voice sounded stronger than she felt.

“Long enough,” Lynette sounded closer than she had been and Bree did her best not to flinch.

She dropped her head and a small sigh escaped her lips, “It’s going to be easier if I just come inside, isn’t it?”

Lynette’s tone was soft but encouraging, “That’s up to you, honey but I am here if you need me.”

Bree hesitated part of her was screaming that she should flee, that she was vulnerable and it would be better to be as far away from Lynette as was humanly possible, but she was frightened that she would damage their friendship if she rejected Lynette’s offer of assistance. Besides, sooner or later she was going to have to explain her actions. Without raising her head she manoeuvred herself past Lynette and made her way into the lounge room. She listened as Lynette locked the door behind them before joining her.

“Can I offer you anything?”

“A coffee would be great,” Bree replied, although she didn’t really need anything except a chance to distance herself and collect her thoughts. She was grateful that Lynette seemed content to leave her waiting on the couch while she prepared the beverage. The clutter of silverware and the aroma of coffee began to fill the air and Bree tried to think about anything except what she was going to say to Lynette. She examined the various toys that littered the floor around her and noted that, although it didn’t even remotely meet her exacting housekeeping standards, the Scavo residence felt like a home – a quality that she knew her own abode had always lacked.

Far too quickly Lynette returned and placed the drink in Bree’s hand. To Bree’s surprise, Lynette remained silent and simply curled into the corner of the couch, casually cooling her coffee with her breath. She knew that Lynette just wanted her to feel comfortable and to allow her to direct the pace of their conversation but compassion and understanding was the last thing that Bree wanted – feeling safe in Lynette’s company was not what she needed right now.

Bree had not even touched her drink when she noticed Lynette place hers on the ground and adjust her position, she had turned so that she was facing Bree and hugging her legs to her chest, her chin resisting on top of her knees. Patience had never been Lynette’s forte and eventually she broke the silence, “So are you going to tell me what’s wrong or do I have to guess? Cause you need to know that I am willing to guess and your delicate ears may not be able to handle what I come up with.”

“Lynette!” she thought she had responded to Lynette’s goading with her usual level of exasperation and indignation but from the look of Lynette’s face, she had missed her mark by a considerable distance. If there was a degree in Lynette, Bree felt that she would have been awarded her PhD a long, long time ago – she had catalogued Lynette’s expressions and felt that she understood the nuances of all of them but she didn’t recognise this one. It was a cross between concern number 5, hurt number 2, anger level 3, fear (a relatively rare look for Lynette and one that Bree and only ever noticed one version of) and something indescribable, indefinable – Bree committed the look to memory and knew she would be pondering it for a long time to come. The look didn’t last long though, Bree wasn’t sure if it was in response to her scrutiny or not but Lynette’s eyes softened and some of her usual playfulness returned as she gave that knowing smirk that Bree so loved to see.

“So guessing it is then – I’m going to have to go with either Danielle being a prostitute or Andrew killing someone or God forbid you’ve stained the carpet with something that you’ve not been able to lift.”

Bree was sure that she blanched at the mention of Andrew killing someone but felt that she could easily cover that lapse with what she was about to say, “Well I did shoot someone today, he didn’t die but I have maimed him a little.”

Lynette’s laughter died on her lips as it became clear that Bree was serious, “Oh my God. Who? When? How? Why?” she paused as though she needed to process the information further before continuing, “I’m sorry it’s none of my business and you don’t have to talk if you don’t want to.” As she had become more coherent she had moved closer and placed her hand on Bree’s knee. Bree looked down at the offending extremity and wanted to remove it from her leg just had she had done with George, earlier, although for entirely different reasons. She had been so angry when he had tried to touch her but she realised that it wasn’t his fault – what was he meant to think - they’d been spending time together, she’d accepted his gifts, she’d made it clear that she was not with Rex, no matter how much she’d tried to blame him she knew his actions were justified. At least when she had removed his hand he had accepted it, that was until the gun and until she encouraged him with her own response. He couldn’t have known that she’d allowed herself to get caught up in the moment and that in her mind it had not been his hand that she had placed hers on top of but rather the smaller hand that had now wandered from her knee and was currently resting on her thigh. Bree struggled to control her breathing as Lynette moved her thumb in lazy circles that obviously where meant to be comforting but were only serving to ignite her hormones.

“It was George, I was showing him how to shoot and he tried to kiss me, I wasn’t prepared and somehow the gun went off and I shot him in the foot.”

“What were you thinking?”

Bree had been contemplating that since it had happened and even though it had occurred in an instant she was more that aware of the myriad thoughts that had been running through her mind at the time – she was livid with Rex, that he could have so cavalierly broken their vows with someone he claimed that he didn’t even care for while she had been resolutely faithful despite her growing feelings for her neighbour, she was angry with herself because she had been given a way out marriage and her commitments and she was spending time with a schizoid pharmacist with a school boy crush instead of with the woman that she was in love with and she was annoyed with George for not being able to detect that she had no real romantic interest in him. When his lips had touched her face she had found his stubble offensive and couldn’t shake the feeling that she was betraying Lynette. She realised that this information would be overwhelming so she paraphrased, “Despite what he’s done to me and no matter how much he’s hurt me I’m not prepared to get back at Rex by being with someone I don’t love.” Even that small confession was far closer to the truth than she felt comfortable admitting.

“You do realise that if you keep this up it’s likely you won’t be able to get any dates at all”

“This is serious, if he wanted to he could have me arrested,” despite her words she was glad that Lynette had lightened the tone of their conversation.

“I didn’t mean to be so insensitive,” her voice was soft and lacked all humour. “I am always here for you, no matter what, I hope you know that.” Lynette had stilled the hand on her thigh and was staring at her intently. The blonde lifted her other hand and stroked Bree’s hair before pushing it behind her ear. Lynette leaned towards her and Bree was sure that she was going to kiss her, the blood rushing in her ears drowning out any thoughts that they shouldn’t be doing this. Then as suddenly as it began it stopped, Lynette broke their intense eye contact and turned her head away. Bree was disorientated and it took her a while to process the sound that was the source of Lynette’s distraction and she couldn’t believe that she had not heard Penny’s cries herself.

Lynette’s breathing seemed a little rapid and she was biting intently on her lower lip. “I have to see to her.”

“I know and I have to go,” Bree was amazed that her voice worked at all.

“You don’t have to.”

“Oh, I really think I do,” she replied, suddenly unable to make eye contact, frightened if she didn’t leave now she would do something that they would both regret – her marriage might have been a sham but Tom wasn’t Rex and she didn’t have the right to destroy Lynette’s life, even if it seemed possible that her feelings were reciprocated.

Lynette showed her to the door, the situation with Penny making a quick exit necessary. They both knew there was no time to discuss what had happened, which was probably for the best. Bree didn’t even say goodbye as she passed through the door and would have been content to make a clean get away but Lynette grabbed her wrist and pulled her back, placing a chaste kiss on her cheek that managed to catch the edge of her lips. Seemingly innocent and yet still sexy as hell but unfortunately open to far too many interpretations – much like Lynette herself. The look on Lynette’s face was a little less ambiguous though, it’s was definitely a look that Bree had only ever seen her direct at Tom before, and her voice was husky as she stated, “We’ll talk later,” before giving Bree a lingering glance and then closing the door.

Bree wrapped her arms around herself, partly to ward off the cold and partly to try and kept the warm feeling in her chest from dissipating. She was proud that she only made one backwards glance on her trip home and was relieved that Rex did not appear to stir as she snuck upstairs. As she pulled the covers over her body she tried to muster some anger over her lapse in self control but she could only smile as she closed her eyes, her fingers absently tracing the skin where Lynette’s lips had been, she knew it was impossible but the skin felt warmer there, as though the kiss had been burnt in. She had been right to worry about the fact that going to see Lynette tonight might have changed her life forever, it almost certainly had, but right now, she couldn’t seem to convince herself that that was a bad thing.

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