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Slip Away

Guest emmasi

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Topic Title: Slip Away

Topic Description: Robbie, Jack, Tasha.

Type of story: Oneshot

Rating: A

Main Characters: Robbie, Jack, Tasha.

Genre: Drama

Warnings: VD. Some slash :rolleyes:

Is Story being proof read: Yes

Summary: Jack helps Robbie through a difficult time.

I posted this at HAAC already (as part of my 2006 plot outline) and just thought I'd see what people here have to say about it (if anything). There's a complicated back-story to this, but I don't really think you'd want to read the whole thing as it's about three pages of summary.

Things you need to know are that Kim died from his overdose in the cyclone and it was only then that Robbie realised he was in love with him. He went to the city to find a similar relationship with some random guy, but it didn't mean anything. He came back to the bay straight away. He's not sure if he still has romantic feelings for Tash, but he does love her.

Jack killed Corey because Corey was trying to kill Martha. Jack did it in front of Martha, and now he doesn't want to be around her becuase he's convinced that she'll just think he's a cold-blooded killer, like she did when he first came to the bay. Jack's avoiding Martha by putting all his energy into helping Robbie try to rescue Tasha from the Believers.

Tasha is several months pregnant and she doesn't know if it's Robbie's or Jonah's. The cops came and arrested the Believers (I forget why) and Tasha went into labour. Jack and Robbie took her into hospital...


Robbie sat, rocking back and forth, in the waiting-room chair. Jack sat beside him, watching him, wondering if he should try to tell him that everything would be okay, even when he knew that there was a good chance it wouldn’t be. Tash hadn’t looked well when they brought her in.

Jack sighed inwardly as Robbie doubled over, leaning his elbows on his knees and putting his forehead in his hands. Robbie wasn’t taking this well. And why should he? If that was Martha in there…Jack put her out of his mind; Martha wasn’t in there. Martha wouldn’t be anywhere near him for a very long time.

He reached out to put an unsure hand on Robbie’s back, but recoiled as Robbie’s head snapped up in the direction of the delivery room. The doctor was walking out. Jack couldn’t read his expression, but he thought he saw a fleck of blood on the man’s shirt. Robbie jumped up, not registering anyone’s appearance, just desperate to know how Tasha was doing and if the baby was okay.

“Tasha’s lost a lot of blood,” said the doctor calmly, trying to settle Robbie down. “She’s very weak. The baby’s okay, for now, but it was a premature birth. We’re going to have to keep a close eye on both of them.”

She… thought Robbie, She’s a girl… His joy ended quickly as the word ‘premature’ sunk in. She could die…

“But they’ll be okay,” said Robbie anxiously. “They will, won’t they?” The doctor sort of shrugged and shook his head. He didn’t know.

“Can we see them?” asked Jack on Robbie’s behalf. “Either of them?”

“Tasha needs to rest,” said the doctor. Robbie looked like he was about to object to this, but thought better of it.

“And the baby?” asked Jack.

“We’re going to run some tests, and then it’ll be taken to the maternity ward.”

“I want to see her,” said Robbie. “I want to see my baby.”

“Robbie,” Jack said quietly, “We don’t even know…”

“It’s my baby,” hissed Robbie. His conviction told Jack not to argue. “And I want to see her,” he added to the doctor. “I want to see her, and I want to see Tash.”

The doctor paused, considering Robbie carefully. “Wait here.”

Robbie rolled his eyes in frustration. Jack put out a precautionary hand to stop Robbie running up the hallway to the delivery room while the doctor’s back was turned. But Robbie was more than able to restrain himself. Despite what he said, he was too afraid to go into that room; he was too afraid to find out that Tash wasn’t okay…

The boys were seated again by the time one of the nurses got back to them. They would have been bored by now if they weren’t so angry at being made to wait. Well, Robbie was angry…and scared. Jack just didn’t know what he was supposed to be doing. Robbie and Tash were more Martha’s friends, anyway. He wasn’t sure he’d ever been left alone with either one of them for this long before. Still, it was nice to feel useful again, he supposed, in spite of the circumstances.

“You can see you’re baby now, Mr Hunter.” Robbie looked up at the nurse. He didn’t stand straight away. When he did, it was like someone else was pulling him to his feet. His legs felt shaky. Jack stood up beside him.

“Do you want me to come with you?” It took a few seconds for Robbie to understand what Jack had said to him. He blinked and shook his head; he could handle this on his own.

The nurse waited to lead him down the hall. Robbie didn’t move. Jack put his hand on Robbie’s back and guided him forward. “Come on,” said Jack, walking with him.

“She’s just in here,” said the nurse.

Robbie stood at the doorway, looking into the darkened room. Jack stood behind him. “Are you okay?” Jack whispered. Robbie half nodded and took a step forward. He couldn’t remember ever seeing a baby that small. He stepped up to the weird plastic box they were keeping it in – keeping his daughter in. She didn’t seem to be any bigger close up.

“Is she going to be okay?” asked Robbie hoarsely, feeling in his heart that he didn’t want to know the answer.

“She’ll have to stay in the humidi-crib until we’re absolutely sure that she’s healthy,” said the nurse. “She’s been doing well so far, but we have to take these precautions for all premmies.” She spoke as if it was the most natural thing in the world to be seeing your baby, for the first time, trapped behind a sheet of perspex.

“And then can I take her to see Tash?” asked Robbie. “Can Tash see her?” The nurse paused. Jack recognised the look on her face as that of someone trying to make up a quick lie (criminals did it all the time).

“That’s the mother?” asked the nurse. Jack noticed she was stalling. Robbie nodded. “Well,” she went on, “If Tasha’s doctor says it’s okay, sure.” She smiled politely and walked over to a bench at the side of the room. “In the mean time, you can fill out these forms.” She handed them to Robbie. Robbie looked down at them. He didn’t know if it was the light or what, but he couldn’t quite get his head around the words on the page or what he had to do.

“I’ll take care of it,” said Jack, taking the forms from Robbie. “I’m a cop,” he smiled at the nurse, “I’m used to paperwork.” She nodded (not really caring, as long as Robbie did the signing) and left.

Jack went over to the small lamp on the desk and began filling out Robbie and Tasha’s names. Robbie stood over the crib and looked in closely at the tiny red baby inside; his and Tasha’s baby girl.


Robbie sat beside Tasha’s bed. She hadn’t woken up yet. It had been hours…maybe days…Robbie had lost track of the time he had spent in that hospital, in that room, waiting for her to wake up.

Definitely days; Irene and Beth had come and gone, and the doctor had told Robbie that he could take the baby (which still didn’t have a name) into Tasha’s room. Robbie was just waiting for Tasha to wake up, so she could see how beautiful it was.

Her eyes flickered open.

“Tash?” whispered Robbie excitedly. “Tasha…” he forced himself to speak more clearly.

“Rob…” She was still groggy, but it was good enough for him. He smiled and nodded.

“Yeah, Tash, I’m here.” She squeezed his hand in recognition (he had been holding hers loosely already). “How are you feeling?” He thought it was probably a stupid question, but he wasn’t sure what else to say.

“The baby…” said Tash. “Where’s the baby…”

“She’s fine. Everything’s fine.” He kissed her hand.


“Yeah, ‘She’. You had a baby girl, Tash.” He smiled wider, realising what an achievement this actually was.

“We…” Tash smiled back at him weakly. Robbie nodded proudly.


Tash closed her eyes. Robbie saw a tear form at the corner of one of them.

“What’s wrong?”

“I’m sorry…” she breathed. “I’m sorry…the Believers…Jonah…I love you Robbie…I should have listened…”

“Shh, it’s okay…” He pushed her hair away from her face. “It doesn’t matter now, just as long as you’re okay.” He hesitated. “I love you too.” He thought she needed to hear it. But then he added, “Tash…what Jonah said about that guy in the city…”

“It was a mistake…” said Tasha. “Jonah was a mistake…” Did she even hear him?

“No, Tash, I mean…”

“It was a mistake.” Maybe she did hear him.

“Well anyway,” said Robbie, willing to move on if she was, “I think it’s about time you met your daughter, don’t you?” Tasha’s eyes lit up at the thought of it, even though the rest of her was still too weak to express her excitement.

Robbie practically skipped out of the room, and then returned moments later with the little girl that had taken so much out of her mother. Tasha actually managed a proper smile at the sight of her.

“She’s beautiful…” whispered Tash as Robbie sat down beside her, holding the baby at her eye-level.

“Like her mum,” said Robbie.

“Dad,” Tasha corrected him.

“She still needs a name,” said Robbie. “Any ideas?”

Tasha nodded serenely. “Kim…”

Robbie felt the air catch in his chest. It still hurt to hear that name; it still confused him to the core to think about what that person meant to him. But at the same time, Robbie couldn’t think of anything better to call his child.

“Kim,” he agreed. “He’d like that,” he said of his old friend. “And this little girl will like it too,” he bounced the baby gently in his arms. “Probably better than Kim ever did. I mean it’s pretty much a girl’s name, isn’t it?” Robbie smirked. Kim would SO hit him if he ever heard him say that.

Tasha smiled, watching Robbie play with their baby. He looked so happy…their daughter would be so happy with him…

She closed her eyes.

It was a few minutes before Robbie realised that Tasha was asleep again. And another long second before he realised that she wasn’t breathing.


“Robbie, love, are you sure you’re alright?” Irene had been fussing over him and the baby all day – since before he’d brought Kim home from the hospital, actually. But today, she seemed to be extra concerned.

It was an odd sort of a thing, coming home from a funeral. It almost felt normal, in a way – like you’d just come back from the shops or something, only you’d left something important behind, and you knew you could never go back for it.

He sat down on the lounge. He looked into Kim’s eyes. She had Tasha’s eyes. And light brown hair like him. He smiled at her.

Irene hovered in the kitchen, making coffee. She had more than two mugs out. “You might want to put her down for a nap, love,” she advised. “People will be arriving soon. It’ll be a nightmare trying to get her to sleep with everyone wantin’ to take a squiz at her.”

“In a minute,” said Robbie. He wanted to memorize those eyes, and make sure he never forgot them, no matter how many years passed without Tash there behind them.

“Hey,” called Jack from the doorway, “I’m not early, am I?”

“Oh it’s fine, love,” Irene assured him. “I expected a kind of dribs and drabs approach to this thing.” She ushered him towards the table and placed a mug of pre-prepared coffee in front of him. “You never know with wakes, do ya? Some people need a bit of time to get over the funeral – others just want to plough on though…”

“Others just have nowhere else to be,” Jack said sheepishly. “If I’m too early, I can come back later…”

“Don’t be silly!” said Irene. “Go on, sit down!” Jack did as he was told and sat at the table with his coffee. He didn’t much feel like drinking it though. He looked over to Robbie, sitting on the lounge with the baby. He got up and went over to them.

“How is she?” he asked, looking at Kim.

“She’s fine,” answered Robbie. “She doesn’t know that she’s not going to see her mother anymore.” He realised how depressing that sounded. “Sorry.”

“It was a stupid question,” Jack shook his head. “And…I suppose an equally stupid question would be…how are you doing?”

Robbie twitched his mouth indecisively. “I’ll be alright, I guess. These things happen, right?”

“Robbie, love,” called Irene, “Do you wanna put her down now?” This was less a question and more of an instruction.

“Okay.” Robbie got up and carried Kim into his and Tasha’s room…into his room…Tasha didn’t live there anymore, he reminded himself.

“Do you need a hand?” asked Jack. He felt awkward standing around doing nothing.

“Nope, got it covered. The nurse at the hospital showed me what to do.” He wrapped Kim up methodically in a soft, miniature blanket. “There we go,” he said triumphantly. Kim kicked her leg out and unraveled Robbie’s hard work.

“Here,” Jack grinned. “I still remember a bit from when Lucas was little.” He refolded the blanket across Kim’s body. She seemed to be comfortable and settled now. Robbie sighed.

“I’m not going to be able to do this by myself, am I?” He slumped down on the bed.

“You’re not by yourself,” said Jack, turning away from the crib. “You’ve got Irene to help you, and Barry. And you’re mum and your sister. And look, I’m helping you. You’ll do fine.”

“You’ve helped me a lot,” said Robbie sincerely. “Thanks.”

“It’s nothing.”

“No, it is. I couldn’t have done this without you.” He looked over at his sleeping baby. “Any of it. She wouldn’t even be here without you. She’d either be with those Believer freaks, or…” He shook his head. “I don’t want to think about it.” But he was thinking about it; his baby could have died. His baby could still die – tomorrow or fifty years from now. And what was he going to do to stop it? He certainly didn’t do anything to stop it happening to Tash. “It meant a lot, you coming today. I know you didn’t have to, now that you and Martha aren’t…you know.”

“Well, I’d like to think you and I are friends,” said Jack, “Despite what’s happening with me and Martha…or not happening. Besides, I wanted to pay my respects to Tasha like everyone else. She was a good girl.”

“Yeah she was,” lamented Robbie.

Jack sat down beside him. “You’re not okay, are you?”

“I just don’t understand why people keep dying.”

“Well…I guess it’s like you said, sometimes these things just happen.”

“Sometimes,” repeated Robbie, staring into space. “My two best friends…the people I loved more than anything…both gone in the space of a year…both dead before any of us were even twenty. How is that fair?”

“It’s not.”

Robbie and Jack stared into the darkness of the room.

“You remind me of him sometimes, you know,” said Robbie. “Kim; you’re a strong person, like he was. You always know what to do. You never get scared…You never get lost.”

“I get scared,” confessed Jack. “I get terrified. But…you just have to learn to put it to one side – get things done.”

“That’s why you’re a good cop.”

“That’s why I’m a crap cop. I almost let Martha die because I couldn’t face my fear and make a choice between killing Corey or letting him kill my girlfriend; I was too scared to do my job. ”

“But you did it, didn’t you? You saved her. More than I could do…” Robbie looked down at his hands. “I buried my wife today, Jack. I did that, because I wasn’t a strong enough person to keep her safe. And Kim…I loved him so much, and I didn’t even realise it until after he was gone. I didn’t realise how much I needed him around…how much he needed me…We used to always be there for each other, you know? All three of us…but then it all changed…and now I’m the only one left…I miss them so much…”

Robbie, even though he tried to contain himself, began to cry. Jack put his hand on Robbie’s back, trying to console him. Robbie felt Jack rocking him back and forth. He wanted so much for it to be Kim doing that to him…

“Jack…” he said carefully. “Do you love Martha?”

Jack paused and thought about it. It seemed like an odd question.

“I’m not really sure. I think so, but…It doesn’t matter now. I can’t be with her.”

“Why not?” sniffed Robbie, turning to face Jack.

Jack wasn’t really in the mood to discuss his own issues right now. “It doesn’t matter…”

“I don’t think I could have been with Tash anymore,” said Robbie, obliging Jack’s desire for a change of subject. “If she was still here, I mean,” he added darkly.

“I thought you just said you loved her?”

“I did,” said Robbie. “I do. But by the end, it was different. I was different. I still loved her, but I wasn’t–”

“IN love with her?” Jack predicted. Robbie nodded, rather shamefully. Jack picked up on his guilt. “Was there someone else?”

Robbie hesitated. “Sort of, but we never did anything…we never got the chance…” He looked poignantly at Jack. “You really do remind me of him, you know.”

Jack looked at Robbie. For a moment, he didn’t understand. But even as it dawned on him, Jack didn’t take his hand off Robbie’s back. Maybe he was shocked by what he was hearing, or maybe he didn’t want to move away as Robbie leaned in closer to him. Maybe he just wanted to feel wanted.

Their lips met. Robbie tested Jack’s reaction to this before going further. Jack wasn’t trying to push him away.

Robbie lifted his hand up to the back of Jack’s neck, caressing the skin and dark hair at the base of the skull. Jack’s grip tightened on Robbie’s back, drawing the pair closer still.

They were kissing, confident that it was the right thing to be doing, but unable to explain why. This wasn’t the time to be asking ‘why’ – they’d been doing that for too long now. All they knew was that they needed this – needed each other – needed someone to hold onto, for just that moment if nothing else. They’d think about what this, and everything else, meant later.


The End.


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