Warnings: Major Character Death, angst.
Prompt: #27, dream, from the csi prompt table.
Summary: Danny and Don go to sea.
Hey, Flack said one morning. Let's go to the sea. His eyes are impossibly, impossibly wide and he doesn't try to contain his grin.
Danny paused with his cereal spoon halfway to his mouth and gaped at his lover. The milk dripped off his spoon and into his lap, but he didn't 't notice. He wavered between indulging Flack and doing nothing for the rest of his well-deserved Sunday off.
I promise cotton candy, Flack said. And my wet body, he adds with a lewd smirk, and Danny is done for.
Don is buried on a hot, windy day. The entire team is assembled there, stiff and silent in black. Danny can't look up to Flack's parents -- his mother, trembling; his father, stoic when grieving -- he just can't. He has an inexplicable urge to rip off his black suit, it's choking him, Jesus Christ, he can't breathe anymore.
Why the black? he wants to yell. Why all the goddam black?? His eyes were blue, BLUE, you bastards, just like mine or are you forgetting already?
It doesn't make sense; it's irrational and illogical but Danny wants to scream until the sounds rip their way from his throat, his tongue, his heart and rise in plumes to the heavens.
The sky was cloudless and blue, and Danny collapsed to his knees.
During the night, Danny shifted under the bed and kicked the worn, white sheets around his legs. The ceiling fan pumped lazily, slowed by the summer heat. The sound of car horns and dogs barking rushed into the room and stagnated there under the dying fan. He gasped and had the distinct feeling of being swept under. Suddenly, he was bare-chested, clad only in sopping board shorts as he dove beneath waves and was pulled by the tide further and further away from the shore to where horizon met the taut, azure sky. And Flack's hand was clasped tightly in his -- don't let go Danny! Don't let go! -- and it seemed that each pull of the sea wrapped him, wriggling and blind in the salty water, around Flack's unyielding body. His driftwood back curved, each distinct vertebrae the ridge and bone of the earth that cupped and held the sea.
Danny burrowed back under the sheets, pressing his frame against the mattress and breathed heavily. The overwhelming, choking sensation of being underwater had abated slightly. Assembled there in that cramped bedroom were the smells of the city: the grate of vehicles, sweat, old paint that flaked and peeled off walls, pasta sauce, two men sinuous with slick need -- but it was really just one soul. And this was the nature of things, Danny thought, twisting one finger into the tangle of sheets. That is splintered and broke and rushed away from each other into graves and skies but had one everlasting spine, the fragments of bone that built your walls and reeled you in, no matter how far you swam or crawled or ran.
Danny drags his bare feet along the boardwalk that marches along the coast. He thinks about bones and coffins and cigarette stubs, wondering if one day they would become a part of the sand, the beach that snaked sinuously into the water, the wet press of sandcastles that squished between his toes, the clouds that drifted like dashes of acrylic paint against the dipping sky.
Some things you know with certainty and the world spun again. Sand, water, tides, clouds, grown men with trembling hands that stared at the sea and cried.
Flack's broad, calloused hand was wrapped tightly in his. The sea and the sea below it was dark and impenetrable in its blue depths. But these, Danny knew, like all the other dreams were ghosts.
He looks down with perfect clarity at the long fingers intertwined with his. Don't let go Danny, the sea and those blue eyes whispered. They spoke in waves and the pull of tides and the sorrow that settled in Danny's heart. The possibility of drowning wasn't really a possibility at all; the bone and the ridge of the earth would hold him together.
He closed his eyes, and pried the fingers from his own.