Written in response to a question on Senad about what Blair would wear to seduce Jim. At a friend's request, I did a rewrite of this story in "The Magnificent Seven" universe ~ Hit or Miss.
A near miss is a hit.
This story takes place after "The Sentinel, by Blair Sandburg."
With thanks and apologies to Pet Fly, and proceeding under the assumption that forgiveness is easier to ask than permission ...
This tale takes place shortly after "The Sentinel by Blair Sandburg."
Offering to give up his dissertation for Jim had been hard.
Dying had been harder, and coming back and facing the new discord between them had been harder still.
Hardest of all? Standing behind that podium and giving up his dream; at least, the dream that had been his. Before Jim had appeared in his life, seeming to embody his dream, then changing it and becoming a new dream.
It had seemed hardest of all, anyway, until he'd gone to the Academy and got his badge and taken his place at Jim's side, officially ... only to find himself further from Jim's side than he'd been since they'd first met.
Getting through the days had been terrible, walking on eggshells that felt like hot coals, until he had come to accept the hopelessness. Then it had become absurdly, painfully easy. Since I gave up hope, I feel much better, Blair thought, and wondered what Naomi would have said had she known that his new mantra came from a bumper sticker.
And then things had changed. Again.
A car chase. A shootout. Three gunmen subtracted from five weapons with two cops left over ... a righteous afternoon. It wasn't until Jim was sorting the laundry a few days later that he found the small hole in Blair's shirt.
Blair looked up, distracted, from scouring the bathroom floor. "What?"
Jim poked his index finger through the hole and wiggled it in Blair's direction.
"Oh. That was Paxton. He missed."
"A near miss." Jim's voice was strained.
"Jim, a near miss is a hit. Paxton missed. No Bandaids involved." And Blair went back to scrubbing the bathroom floor. Which was easier now, because his hands were shaking, causing the sponge to cover the small space with twice the intensity that Blair's scrubbing usually generated.
He'd seen Jim's face.
And decided that maybe, just maybe, things weren't so hopeless after all.
It took four days to get the nerve up, but Blair did it. Nothing to lose, he kept repeating. Nothing really to lose, and everything to gain.
They'd got home from work, a long weekend unplanned and without obligation lying before them. Dinner, a couple of beers, highlights of the game, and then bed. Jim went upstairs, and Blair went to his room.
And a few minutes later, climbed the stairs himself.
The questioning voice of a sentinel who did not need super-sensitive ears to know that his young roommate was slowly, hesitantly, entering his private space. "What?"
Blair stood before him, clad only in a shirt. The shirt with the hole in it.
"What...." Jim said again, and this time it was a whisper.
Blair slid one arm up into his shirt sleeve, poked his index finger through the hole, and wiggled it.
"Not a near miss, Jim. A second chance. No ... a third chance, really. I'm taking it. Will you?"
In the darkness he could not see Jim's face, but he could hear the breathing increase. Then a nervous cough. A sharp intake of breath, and then the beginning of a word, and another cough. And then, the rustle of bedcovers.
~ 30 ~