➤And Then There Was Shawn
“Yes, mother I am aware that no one’s heard from me for over two years now... I just got busy... no, I wasn’t in prison... Sure ma, next time I get booked I’ll make sure m’one phone call’s t’you. Bye now.”
Shoving the receiver back on the base of the rotary phone. Shawn heaved out a rough loud sigh and dropped his head. Shaking it a bit he leaned his elbows on the edge of the kitchenette island and planted his face into his hands.
Ever since he left the base, all he thought about doing was turning around and second-guessing everything. As much as he didn’t want to be a part of the CIA anymore, he still wanted to be there with everyone. Although it wasn’t hard for Shawn to make friends, and he in fact /did/ have some in Langley. The New York base just meant more to him. There he got along with Buchanan, as well as worked alongside his best friends Kurt and Jimmy.
Lastly, and more importantly, Mark was there. It came out of nowhere and Shawn never knew what had hit him until it was too late.
Of course, he still loved Mark, a lot, and hated that he wasn’t there with him anymore. But Shawn’s stubbornness and fear got in the way, so every time he thought about heading back, he would quickly change his mind.
At the same time, he was mentally beating himself for ending things with Mark the way he did. Despite how it went, Shawn kept glancing over his shoulder in hopes of seeing Mark come after him.
But he never did.
It made sense though, Mark wasn’t “normal” and didn’t know what the real world was like. He even said so right to Shawn’s face, and yet Shawn still pushed Mark to get him to run out like it was nothing.
It was much bigger than that. Bigger than either one of them. Something awful had happened to Mark that altered his personality and brain activity and it wasn’t something that could go away overnight. No amount of hoping and wishing was going to change that, and it was something that Shawn had to get used to.
The whole thing about Mark broke Shawn’s heart and all he wanted was to keep Mark happy. To give him a normal life and stay by his side forever. Doing whatever it took to make him feel somewhat human. Mark wasn’t a monster, not to Shawn, and he deserved happiness and freedom. It was just a lot harder than simply walking out the front door.
For some reason, that was hard for Shawn to fully grasp, but at least by now, he’s accepted it.
Shaking his head Shawn dropped his hands from his face and moved upright again. Moving over to the sink he grabbed a glass and filled it with water.
Right as he took a drink, the phone began ringing again. Shawn reached over to the receiver and picked up. Saying a casual ‘hello’ and then taking a drink of his water. Only to spit it out in surprise seconds after.
Setting the glass down and coughing a little. Shawn wiped off his face and shook his head. Clearing his throat before speaking.
“Kurt?! How the hell did ya get this number?”
‘I’m the head of the IT department of the CIA. Wasn’t that hard.’
Placing his glass into the sink behind himself. Shawn grabbed the phone and moved over to the living room area. Sitting at the edge of the sofa.
‘So cute story. A couple of days ago Mark came to me and informed me that you walked out!’
Heaving out a long sigh, Shawn sat back on the sofa and nodded to himself.
“Uh... yeah, I did. Look, I was gonna tell ya but, I just... I dunno I just couldn’t.”
‘Where even are you?’
“M’sister’s vacation place in Manhattan. Listen, Kurt, there’s a real reason why ya called. What’s buggin’ ya, buddy?”
‘Mark left to take care of the Kershaw problem... and things just aren’t looking up right now.’
Shawn pushed out another long sigh and dropped the phone from his ear a moment.
That was exactly what he was worried about and what was making him second guess everything. As much as /he/ wanted to get out of there, he still worried about everyone else’s well-being. And by the sound of it, the only one that was getting hit the hardest was in fact, Mark.
Shaking his head a bit he swore to himself under his breath and then lifted the phone back up. Huffing out a gruff breath he was about to speak but Kurt beat him to it.
‘I think you should come back... for his sake.’
Breathing out with a trill of his lips Shawn cleared his throat out of habit before biting at his bottom lip and speaking out.
“Well uh... I sorta... told’m that I loved him...before running out the door...”
There was silence on the other line for a few seconds and Shawn was waiting for Kurt’s reaction. Moving his hand up to his face, he placed the end of his thumb between his teeth.
‘What?!... Alright, lemme get this straight. You told Mark that you loved him... and then /ran away/?!’
‘Aw, Shawnie... Look, I won’t tell you what’s right or wrong, because I’m not too sure. But just, think about it, okay? I’ll let ya go.’
Shawn waited for Kurt to hang up on the other line before he did the same. Then he moved up to his feet and instantly began pacing the floor.
Thinking back and forth on what was the right thing to do. Though, after hearing that Mark was possibly hurt, he was leaning toward going back. However, going back would be hard and he wasn’t sure how everyone else was going to take it. He had transferred out of New York, to go to Langley, then after he got attacked, he ran back to New York unregistered.
If he were to show up out of the blue again, there was a chance that he wouldn’t be allowed in. Despite being well acquainted with the Director. While being unregistered in the CIA, Shawn was no different than a random person off the street.
But he really wanted to see Mark right then and was willing to take that risk. The more he thought about it, the more both his heart and mind were on the same page.
He wanted had to go see Mark.
Huffing a quick breath, Shawn walked over to the front door. Grabbing his jacket off the hook, he slipped it on real quick and reached for the handle. Then he dashed out of the door in a heartbeat.
Mark was in a total haze right then. Slowly taking a hand he rubbed one of his eyes. Speaking out again in that same brittle rough tone of voice.
Shawn gave his arm one last squeeze before dropping his hand and nodded. Taking a step forward he spoke out gently and lifted his hands. He didn’t want Mark to move too much.
“Yeah, I’m right here. Take it easy would ya? Y’ain’t lookin’ so good right now.”
“Flattering compliment. I’m fine.”
Mark said as he pulled himself up a little more and grabbed the railing of the bed. Flipping up the hinges he lowered one side and cautiously maneuvered out of the bed.
“Mark! What are ya doin’?!”
Shawn ran over to Mark and gently grabbed ahold of him to help stabilize him.
But just as he did so, Mark pulled out of Shawn’s hold and stepped back. Slightly wobbling to the side a bit he caught his balance and shook his head.
“I’m okay. Just listen to me for a second.”
“Damnit, Mark get back into that bed right now! Whatever it is it can wait, I just want you to...”
“I love you too.”
Shawn stopped and completely got caught off guard right then. He wasn’t even sure if had just heard that correctly. His heartbeat started to pick up and he felt heat begin to rise in his cheeks. Lightly shaking his head on confusion as he looked up to Mark.
Mark lightly chuckled without it hurting too much and shook his head fondly.
“You heard me.”
Falling back onto the edge of the bed, Mark reached out and took Shawn’s hand and lightly pulled him close and then down a little bit so they were face to face. Then with his other hand, he gently cupped the side of Shawn’s face, leaned in, and pressed his lips onto Shawn’s.
Just then the world completely faded in the background and the only thing that Mark could feel right then was Shawn. No more confusion, no more pain, nothing else. Being connected to Shawn like he was right then made Mark actually /feel/. He felt normal. He felt human.
There was always something about Shawn that made Mark feel human.
It was at that moment that he really expressed how he felt toward Shawn and how much he wanted to stay connected with him. To be with him and to be happy by his side. To somehow maybe live a normal life. A dream that was still seemingly untouchable, but in /that/ very moment it actually felt possible.
Mark wasn’t exactly sure how to make that dream possible yet, or if it would ever be. But he didn’t dwell on it much and only lived in that moment. Feeling Shawn and taking in everything that was him. That special someone different.
After a few more moments, Mark let it linger before coming back up for air and softly breaking the kiss. Once it was broken he still remained close to Shawn and lightly smiled when he reopened his eyes and Mark instantly fell deep into his never-ending dark brown irises.
Shawn, on the other hand, was totally caught off guard again. But like previously, it was a wonderful surprise.
Although Shawn had in fact been in love before, he never felt quite like he did right then. Mark was someone truly special and Shawn couldn’t believe that Mark felt the same way about him. He kept hearing Mark’s voice in his head, repeating those four incredible words over and over. That, along with the feeling of Mark connected to him the way they just were and being so close right then. Shawn was completely on cloud nine and wasn’t planning on heading back down any time soon.
Regardless of how ecstatic he was right then, Shawn also knew he had to snap back into reality. Mark was still hurt and needed to rest and Shawn was going to be there and make sure he got taken care of.
Taking Mark’s hand off of the side of his face, Shawn gently held onto it.
“Ya gotta rest now m’love. C’mon, I’ll help ya.”
Shawn spoke out quietly and with a sweet gentle tone in his voice. Then he took ahold of Mark and helped him lay back into the bed. Luckily, this time Mark wasn’t putting up any fuss and just did what Shawn wanted him to do. That really helped in both of their cases. Shawn didn’t have to go to any drastic measures and Mark was allowing himself to get the rest that he really needed.
As soon as Mark was all settled, Shawn made sure that he was all cleaned up and had everything he needed. Then he remained by Mark’s side until he had fallen back asleep.
Once Mark was finally asleep again, Shawn walked over and sat on one of the bedside chairs. There he found one of the newspapers and checked out the headlines. Things remained quiet and peaceful for a little while and Mark actually stayed sound asleep for a really long time. That made Shawn wonder just how much pain he probably was in. He had no idea what when on those last few days while he was away. It worried him, but he tried his best not to really think about it. So Shawn just let it slide and read the news articles for the time being.
Heaving a long sigh, Shawn rested his face into his hand as he read through the articles. Soon becoming bored and a little restless, he looked over to Mark and made sure he was still resting. Focusing on just him for a couple of moments, Shawn glanced over to the other end of the infirmary and did a double-take.
Getting taken aback right then he couldn’t believe his eyes. In fact, he didn’t /want/ to believe them right then.
Over on the opposite end of the infirmary was Kershaw. Just sitting there casually on the edge of one of the beds. After only a couple seconds, Jimmy walked up to where Kershaw was and looked him over.
Everything was so casual, it was as if what happened, never happened. Why was Kershaw /there/ in New York? And why was everyone so calm about it?
Shawn was still a little sore in some places from his encounter with Kershaw. Both physically and emotionally. Yet, everyone else was acting like it was nothing.
After Jimmy was done looking Kershaw over. He pushed down his sleeve and looked right over to Shawn.
Shawn lightly gasped and then scrambled out of the chair. Going over to stand in front of Mark while he was resting and stood still as Kershaw walked over to where Shawn was.
Shawn lightly furrowed and tried to act closed off and a bit defensive. Not wanting to have an encounter with Kershaw.
“What’s it to ya?”
Jack eyed Shawn and heaved out a sigh. Knowing that he had every right to feel defensive.
“Shawn, I am so /so/ incredibly sorry. I wasn’t even aware I did it until I was told. That wasn’t me, but that isn’t an excuse. There isn’t any, at all. I’m just sorry.”
Shawn focused on Kershaw and took everything he just said in. He was aware that Sleeper Agents tended to not have any memory of their rampages at times, but there were still a lot of details Shawn didn’t fully understand.
Nevertheless, looking at Kershaw right then, Shawn could tell that he really was sorry. It was something that was terrifying and scarring. An event that would take a lot for Shawn to fully get over. Yet, by the look in Kershaw’s eyes. Shawn could tell that he already knew that. The tell was right there.
Kershaw’s eyes weren’t like what he saw that day. They were full of emotion and life. His eyes were so cold, dark, and lifeless anymore. They reflected sorrow and regret for what he had done while looking at Shawn. Seeing all of that, he knew that Kershaw meant it.
“What... what happened?”
Jack dropped his head a moment before looking back up. There he glanced over to Mark then placed all of his attention onto Shawn.
“Langley activated me to go after Mark. That’s what I was initially programmed to do. I went after /you/ simply because you at the wrong place at the wrong time. Then after that, I somehow made it up here and Mark had to fight me off.”
“Asleep... Buchanan brought up waking him but Mark refused and went out all on his own. We got into a /massive/ fight that lasted I don’t even know how long. Finally, once I was back we brought each other here.”
Shawn studied Kershaw for a couple more moments. Trying to gauge what he was thinking and then coming up with a conclusion. Crossing his arms, Shawn then took a step back.
“Yeah... Mark was only here for a day before he ran off again. Buchanan said that he and Mark got into an argument before he flew out to Langley by himself. He kinda lost it and went after Director Fabian. Still, all while asleep.”
Shawn dropped his arms and then looked over his shoulder. Slightly turning his body he faced Mark. Eyeing him as he now looked so peaceful as he rested. He seemed helpless and fragile right then. But he had just got back from running amok. And this time he never blacked out which was honestly puzzling to Shawn a little. But he didn’t overthink that too much and let it go.
Shaking his head a little he huffed a short sigh looked back over to Kershaw.
“So is he okay now?”
“Not too sure, he got hit in the head a lot... /that/ was my fault. But, now I think since he’s resting he might be fine.”
Shawn nodded and then fully turned his body back to face Kershaw.
Everything was coming out all at once and it was a lot for Shawn to grasp. Regardless he was trying his best. For the most part, Mark seemed to be fine now and would probably be getting better the more he rested. Shawn was going to remain a little wary but not worry about it too much. As long as he stayed with Mark, everything would be fine. Or at least for the most part manageable.
“Look, thanks Kershaw, an’ um. Apology accepted.”
“Really. That was pretty big of ya, an’ I highly appreciate ya comin’ t’me an’ alla that.”
“Thank you. I felt terrible so I’m glad now. Oh! And you can just call me Jack.”
Shawn lightly gave off a half-smile and nodded.
Jack smiled and then left Shawn alone, saying that he was heading back to his own room, and then off he went.
Shawn waved to Jack and watched him go before turning back over to Mark. Cautiously approaching the side of the bed, Shawn looked Mark over and once again made sure everything was alright. Leaning over the railing Shawn softly and gently kissed Mark’s cheek. Lightly brushing the back of his fingers on his face afterword. Then he slowly backed away from the bed and then headed out of the infirmary.
Walking down the hall Shawn went over to the elevator and pressed for the top floor. Waiting for the couple of seconds when the doors slid open he walked in.
As soon as the doors opened again he quickly made it down to the Director’s office. Not bothering to knock or anything Shawn went straight for the handle and opened the door.
Looking around the office he looked over and saw Buchanan come out from the back storage room. Holding one of his many clipboards he glanced up and got a little surprised.
“Wexler, what’re you doing in here?”
Shawn closed the door behind himself and walked up to the front of the desk. Then he took a couple of steps back, he was a little fidgety at first but soon he settled down and stood still.
“What would happen if I were to say... take Mark outta here?”
“Out of the CIA?... Well Shawn I’ll be honest with you, that could be quite the risk. He doesn’t know life outside of the base, he wasn’t programmed to.”
Shawn huffed another sigh and stepped back. Slipping his hands into his pockets for a few seconds he looked down at the floor as he thought. However, he was in such a tizzy right then that thinking straight wasn’t much of a success. So he shook his head and looked up to Buchanan again.
“But... he wouldn’t be alone. Plus, I think it’s a bigger risk if he were to remain here. I just don’t want’m to get hurt er somethin’... hurt /more/ anyway.”
“I understand where you’re coming from. I really do. It’s just if something were to happen and he gets triggered, nothing’s stopping him. Not even you.”
Taking in what Buchanan said right then, Shawn really stopped and got himself to think things through.
Of course, that was an excellent point that Buchanan had just made. After having to fight it off himself first hand, Shawn understood just how dangerous it could get. What was worse was that Mark had been an agent longer, and a Sleeper Agent longer as well. He was bigger than Jack, stronger, and much more skilled.
Mark was at /least/ ten times more dangerous. Maybe even more, but Shawn didn’t want to think about that.
Still, Shawn was worried about what else they may do to Mark in the future. He was afraid that the CIA might get impatient and want more out of him. Or they might get sick of him and toss him to the side. There was also the chance that Mark may lose it one day and go after them. Resulting in him getting killed.
That was, without a doubt, something that Shawn would never want to happen. Once that came to mind right then, nothing else really mattered. All of his own fear had faded away and been replaced with fear for Mark. For his life and well-being.
He wanted Mark out of there before he ended up dead. Or even transformed into something much more terrible and dangerous. Shawn wanted Mark to be free once and for all, despite that crazy risk. To him, it was more important to get Mark out of there. He settled on that being what he was to do. Or to at least try, regardless he wasn’t going to give up easily.
“That’s a risk I just might be willing to take.”
Stepping back, Shawn turned around and went out of the Director’s office. Closing the door behind himself again his mind was still racing. He couldn’t get the idea of trying to get Mark out of there out of his mind. No matter how hard he tried, that was pretty much the only thing he could think of right then.
After Mark was to wake up again, Shawn was going to try and suggest the plan. Even though he had once before, he would try again and keep at it until he could change Mark’s mind. It was important for him to see Shawn’s side of things and to get out of there so he can finally be free and rid of that life for good.
Shawn made his way back down to the second floor and over to the infirmary. Just as he did so he noticed that Mark was stirring a little. Shawn rushed over to the side of the bed and watched as Mark’s bright chartreuse eyes come to view again.
Mark faintly smiled at Shawn and slowly pulled himself to sit up. Taking his hands he rubbed his eyes and let his hands run down his face. Then he looked back over to Shawn and his faint smile grew a little.
Mark said with grogginess and a little gravel in his voice.
“How are ya?”
“Better... not great, but better. Help.”
Mark reached over to the railing of the bed and pushed it down. Then with Shawn’s help, he was able to get on his feet. Taking advantage of the pain killers he had been given. Mark moved about and headed to the bathroom and such. Spending some time on his feet before he wouldn’t be able to again.
Shawn waited for Mark for a couple of minutes and then helped him back out and over to the edge of the bed. There Mark sat up for a little longer as he wanted to speak with Shawn. It was the perfect time for Shawn to tell Mark of the plan and to hopefully convince Mark on coming along with him out of the CIA once and for all.
He knew it was going to be a risk, and that Mark was probably going to bring that up. But Shawn knew just what to say and how to try to make Mark see things his way and that staying there was an even bigger risk.
Everything was ready to go in his mind. He inhaled a quick breath and was going to speak out about it, but then he refrained as Mark went ahead and spoke out first.
“Y’know I’m so glad to have you back. I thought about you the entire time. I’m sorry I didn’t go after you.”
“No, it’s fine. I get now, an’ I’m glad t’be back too. I’ve missed ya a lot.”
Shawn reached over and gently took Mark’s hand into his own and held it. Then with his other hand, he ran his fingers through Mark’s hair.
“But there’s somethin’ I gotta tell ya...”
Looking at Mark, Shawn saw Mark’s eyes look up at him and he instantly found himself getting completely lost within them. Warmth radiated throughout his chest and he lightly squeezed Mark’s hand.
“Um... I just wanted t’let ya know that I ain’t gonna do that again. I’m all yours, an’ will stay right by your side, help y’get better an’ back out there.”
As Mark looked slightly up at Shawn a corner of his lips perked up a little more. Right before it grew into a full smile.
“Of course, I love you Marky.”
Shawn leaned in and planted his lips onto Mark’s and held it for a good few moments. Then he softly broke it and was gently pulled in for more. Mark tugged at Shawn’s hand and told him to join him on the bed this time. Shawn lightly chuckled and kicked off his shoes and climbed into the bed. It was snug but that certainly wasn’t anything to complain about. After he was all settled in Shawn looked over and watched as Mark slowly faded out again.
Looking to him Shawn heaved a silent sigh to himself and gently pressed his forehead against Mark’s.
There he let everything rush through his mind and then wash away. He had it, the entire plan all well thought out, but he just couldn’t go through with it. He wasn’t sure why but he couldn’t.
Taking another long deep breath Shawn soon felt his eyelids getting heavy and before he knew it he too had fallen asleep.