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Terra Firma

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Tittle: Terra Firma (Latin for Solid Ground.)

Length: Short/Medium - Two chapters.

Characters: Aden, Nicole

Genre: Friendship, angst.

Warnings: Some mentions of abuse in the second chapter

Rating: T

Spoilers: None

Sumary: Two conversations that should have happened between Aden and Nicole, after the olympic cliffhanger and after his trial.


He’d been let out of the clinic, his first day of freedom and all he wanted to do was spend it going crazy, within the boundaries of the law of course--stupid good behaviour bond--but unfortunately he couldn’t find his main source of good mayhem.

He’d scoured the bay, all her hang outs, before he’d found Roman at the diner and asked her whereabouts, “Doctor’s mate.” He had answered.


“Stitches and they want to check how the anti-biotic’s are going.”

Aden had frowned, ignored Belle as she awkwardly tried to give him a greeting and backtracked out the door, heading for the hospital.

It didn’t take him long to find her, nurse Julie had a soft spot for him and had shown him the way, “X-ray’s are gods way of punishing me aren’t they.” He snorted at the sarcastic sound of her voice and entered the examining room uninvited. “Let the doctors work princess or you’ll never get out of here.”

She glared at him, “Don’t you ever knock.”

“No. Do you?” he challenged, she rolled her eyes.

The doctor looked slightly miffed at his unwelcome appearance but took down some clear and black splashed pieces of plastic from the luminescent board and spoke to Nicole, “I’ll need to get the nurse to take some blood, that infection doesn’t seem to be clearing.”

She had cursed loudly which the doctor had kindly ignored on his way out the door, Aden looked at her with a tilted head, on closer inspection there was small white crosshatch across the base of her hair line. “What happened to you head.” he asked.

She shrugged irritably; she didn’t like hospitals, “Cut it on some coral, they took the stiches out.”

Aden had pursed his lips, unsure of what to do with himself, he quickly moved to her side and sat next to her on the hospital bed, both their legs hung over the side dangling in time.

“What infection?” he asked.

She looked at him funny, he shrugged sheepishly, “I’ve been out of the loop, all Roman said was that you were sick.”

She grimaced, “Pneumonia.” She said.

“That’s bad right?” he asked.

She shrugged, “It would be better if the medicine they gave me was working better, but I should be fine soon, I haven’t felt bad in a while. I came to visit you remember?” she answered.

He nodded slowly; yeah she had and hadn’t mentioned a thing about being sick or hurt. He frowned protectively, “You should have told me.” he said shortly.

She looked at him doubtfully, “Why?” she asked sarcastically.

“Because I would have wanted to know.” He said tersely, “Its bad enough I wasn’t there when all this happened.”

She snorted, “Well in your defence,” she laughed, “you were having a rather big weekend yourself.”

Aden pouted at being put off his apology so easily, he crossed his arms, “I’m still sorry.” He said.

Nicole softened, she smiled and reached out to sling an arm around his shoulders, “Aden its okay,” she said seriously. “Really, I forgive you, even if there was nothing you could have done.” She gave him an encouraging smile, “It’s not even me you should be worried about, Geoff’s the one who got shot.”

He ignored that. “I should have been there.” He mumbled, resting his head against hers.

“You didn’t know.” Nicole countered, “And frankly it would have been really awkward being stuck on that island with you.” She laughed thinking of what she and Geoff had got up, yeah, that would have been really really awkward.

He looked at her confused a bit but was glad to see her laughing at his expense again, made him feel better, suddenly he remembered his reason for being here, “Hey,” he started, “When do you get out of here?”

She shrugged. “Whenever the nurse borrows yet more of my blood, I swear you’d think they thought I wasn’t using it.”

He grinned; jumping of the bed and standing straight, “You up for high jacking some cars?” he asked suggestively.

She laughed at him, dryly, “Good behaviour bond Aden?” she asked sarcastically.

He rolled his eyes with a dramatic sigh, “Okay, okay,” he said, “We’ll just borrow some push bikes.”

She laughed again, “Deal.”

Aden had decided that if she was ever going to get into trouble again, he’d be there, possibly saving her from it or helping her do it. Either way, this time he wasn’t going to be preoccupied. By anything.

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Aww, thanks guys your all really sweet. :wub: Here's the final chapter, i might end up adding extra chapters if anyone can think of any more scenes we should have got, these were just the first two that came to mind. :)


He’d seen the look on her face, out of the corner of his eye, he’d seen it, he’d been trying to focus on Belle but he had noticed regardless.

She blinked. That was it, just a slight shift to her facial features, she’d swallowed and her eyes and turned ever so slightly downward. Damn why did she have to be so hard to read.

He tried looking for her through the crowd, after he’d been swallowed in a massive hug by Roman; she’s smiled at him, just a quirk of her lip, agreed with all the others. But her eyes had turned downcast again; she didn’t look at him with mischievous eyes promising some kind of trouble at this party, after all isn’t want they were for?

Ever so slightly, he allowed him self to be worried, to get nervous.

Then Belle had corned him in the gym, said some things she shouldn’t have but the nerves didn’t get worse, they stayed the same, building in the back of his scull where memory was stored.


It was late. Or early depending on which 4:13 in the morning the red numbers on his alarm clock were showing. He chose to believe it was late; the moon was the only light in the hallway, down the stairs as he trod lightly to avoid waking Roman and Morag.

He reached the kitchen and stopped, a slight chill tingled his feet as he went from carpet to tiles but he didn’t notice it. He wasn’t the only one up. The nerves intensified.

He licked his lips, chapped form sleep and slowly made his way to the fridge, his original destination; she jumped when it opened with an odd sucking sound. She looked at him and relaxed, turning back to the table she was sitting at.

“Ice-cream?” he asked.

“Sure.” She muttered in reply.

He removed the half eaten tub, knocked the fridge closed with his hip and scored two spoons before finally sitting down across form her. They ate in silence for a few minutes, savouring the mix of chocolate, strawberry and vanilla, then Nicole licked the back of her spoon and said, “Couldn’t sleep.”

Aden gave the smallest smile, “What was your first clue?”

Nicole ignored him and said, “Me too.”

Aden took a breath, leaning back in his chair somewhat, “Because of the trial?” he asked, dropping his eyes at the last second.

Nicole retrieved another curl of pink from the container and shrugged her shoulder, which were already hunched forward, her forearms resting on the table. “I guess.”

Another silence preceded, Aden managed to swallow some more chocolate before replying, “I’m glad you were there.”

It was the easiest way he could say it, he meant it but didn’t know if he would in a few minutes.

“Good verdict.” She answered.

Aden again smiled the smallest smile, “Yeah,” he breathed, “you’ll have to help me with the community service.”

She smiled back at him, “That would be cheating.”

He shrugged, “Only if we got caught.”

The silence returned and he silently wondered if they would ever breech the subject that was making things so uncomfortable between them.

“I’m sorry.” She whispered finally, he looked at her for several moments, her eyes had returned to the table again, she wasn’t looking at him.

“For what?” He whispered, “The abuse?” there was a funny note in his tone, almost like a laugh, as if she could have done anything about it.

Nicole shook her head, “No…” she hesitated, rolling her shoulders back agitated, she was finally looking at him, “for all those things I said…I did to you, I-I was an idiot, I was a bitch—”

“No you weren’t.” he cut her off, not aware that he was smiling at her, but she looked surprised. “You, you were good for me.” He said softly, struggling to put it into words, “You made me feel normal sometimes, like there was nothing different about me.”

“There is nothing different about you.” She said firmly and he looked closely at her, there was something of a familiar fire in her eyes, “You’re still just Aden.”

“But things are different now.”

“Yeah,” she drawled, “I’ll try to be less of a skank around you.”

He laughed.

She grinned.

“I don’t want you to treat me any different,” Aden said seriously.

“Don’t worry Aden,” she grinned crookedly, “You’re too gorgeous not to hit on.”

He laughed with a shake of his head, and there was the silence again, settling around the shoulders again, but it was warmed this time, he waited for several moments, thinking before finally saying, “I’m not sorry I didn’t tell you.” He admitted, gently, “I think I liked us too much.” He added as way of explanation.

“We are adorable.” She smiled, not the least bit hurt, after all she had her secrets from him, and there were so many thing he was never going to know. She was happy leaving some of Aden a mystery. Mysteries were sexy.

“You don’t want to know anything else?” he said, “ask any questions.” He was okay talking to her, if she wanted to.

She thought about it for a moment, and then slowly said, “Are you okay?”

It was a pretty major question, but the only one she had. Slowly, very slowly he nodded, “I’m okay, not good, but not bad, just perfectly okay.”

She grinned at him, “Then that’s it.” She said, “That’s all I have to ask.”

He smiled at her, “Thanks princess.” Using her favourite nickname.

She rolled her eyes with a laugh, “No problem Aden.” She answered avoiding his.



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