"Holding On"

BSG; Starbuck/Apollo; Rated R
Takes place post series finale. Letting go is never easy.

Every time she comes to him, she tells herself it will be the last. Has to be the last. She can see what it does to him, when she leaves, but she can't help herself. Even when they were on the Galactica, both married, both knowing it was wrong, she kept going back for more. Just one more time. Just.one.more.

He hiked the mountain, just like he'd said. And she managed to stay away until the fourth day. She slipped into his sleeping bag as easily as she'd once slipped into his bunk. The first time, he hadn't full awoken; at least she doesn't think so. His hands and mouth and body had done all the right things, made all the right moves, but it'd been as if a dream. And when he woke in the morning - alone except for half-formed memories - that's what he'd told himself.

She left, physically at least, but she was never far. She could never leave him for very long. People thought her arrogance was her weakness, or the booze, like Tigh. But they'd been wrong. Her weakness was wrapped in dark hair and laughing eyes and a desire to do what was right. Except when it came to her. Maybe leaving him had made him stronger, a better man.

The second time she managed to stay away for two months. He had started to clear land for a house, someplace he could come back to in between adventures. This time he'd been awake when she walked up to him. The surprise on his face, the questions on his lips - all had vanished when she dropped her dress and stood naked before him, her skin shimmering with moonbeams. "Frak me," was all she said.

In the morning, she'd lain with her head on his shoulder, watching as the sun appeared on the horizon. She knew he wanted to ask all the questions from the night before. She also knew she had no easy answers for him. As she walked away, into the forest, she'd forced herself not to look back. It was the last time, it really was, she told herself.

It was almost a year later when she returned. The cabin was finished, a rough-hewn residence built with sweat, tears, and whole lot of curse words. The mattress was soft against her breasts, the log frame scraping against her knees, as he bent her across the bed and took her from behind. It was rough, and wild, and just as wonderful as she remembered.

When she dressed in the morning, he came up and wrapped his arms around her. "Kara, please."

The longing in his eyes caused her to look away. "I can't," she whispered, and walked out the door.

The last time, the last time, she repeated over and over in her head. As she opened her arms and let the light surround her, she wondered if it was a promise she'd ever be able to keep.

Copyright May 2008 by Cait N.

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