Title: Breathing
Author: Keli
E-mail: Marie11826@aol.com
Rating: G, I guess.
Disclaimer: Marvel owns them both, not me.
Archive: Uh, if you want it, sure. It'll barely take up any space :)
Feedback: Be gentle, it's my first time.
Summary: Vignette. Ficlet.
Comments: Terri made me do this. Honest. But at least I don't write a long-ass comments section like she does ;)

Hold me, she says, so soft that only he can hear it.

I am, baby, he answers, and tightens his grip on her small body. Her head lies over his heart, and their legs twine together. He increases the pressure of the long strokes he's been making across her back so that she is sure to feel it.

Don't let go, she says. It is on nights like this, nights when she feels a little insecure, a little lost, still a little shaken, that she needs him the most. Him - he seems to need her constantly.

I gotcha, he soothes and continues to stroke her. You're safe, he says with conviction, I'm gonna keep you safe.

She sighs and snuggles into him. She believes his words and her body relaxes. Stay with me, she asks, knowing the answer already.

Always, the answer comes. Always, Marie, I promise. Today, he almost lost the chance to make that promise, almost lost her. But he was watching over her, as ever, and this time, he acted quickly enough. This time, he could save her. This time.

There will be one time, one day, when he fails. He knows this and so does she. His hope is that when he fails, his life ends also. She hopes for just the opposite.

But today was not that day. Today, they share the same room, the same bed, the same life. Today, they lay together in peace, still breathing.