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One For The Future

Guest Red Ranger 1

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I had a few thoughts about the direction the show might end up taking and ended up coming up with this one.Let me know what you think of it.

Story Title: One for the Future

Type of story: One-shot

Main Characters: Aden, Nicole

BTTB rating: G

Genre: Drama

Does story include spoilers: No

Any warnings: None

Summary: A careless moment causes Aden and Nicole to think about their relationship.

Warning:Tiredness Can Cause Road Accidents.

Aden read the poster again.It was just one of many posters dotted around the hospital waiting room.He’d read them all.Several times.He seemed to spend an awful lot of time sat here, waiting for news of someone he cared about:His father, Roman, Belle…

“Aden?”He looked up at the voice.One of the nurses was standing there.He struggled to remember her name before realising it wasn’t important.“You can go through now.”

Aden had expected the nurse to lead him into the room but instead she headed off in the opposite direction, obviously having some other job to do.He shrugged, got to his feet and pushed the door open.

Nicole gave him a broad smile as he came in, treating the whole thing as though it was a joke even though her arm was in a sling and her leg was strapped up.“Hey there.I heard you’d been waiting a long time.”

He didn’t feel able to return the smile.He wanted to be glad that she was all right but all he could feel was anger.“What did you think you were doing?You, rock climbing?Did you do it in high heels or something?”

Nicolelooked upset by the outburst.“The school organised it, Aden.It was perfectly safe.”

“So that’s how you ended up in here?”

“I just slipped, okay?I had a rope around me, it broke my fall, I just happened to dislocate my hip in the process.And I broke my arm ’cos I hit it against the rock face on the way down.”

“And what if the rope had broken?What if you’d fallen further?”

“They’re not gonna give me a faulty rope…”

“Have you any idea how I felt when I got that phone call saying you were in here?Do you know what it would do to me if anything happened to you?”He realised he was about to say it just before the words came out, too late to stop them.“Do you have any idea how much I love you?”

He saw the look of shock on Nicole’s face, shock that he felt himself.He mumbled an apology before backing out of the room.Because the consequences of what he’d just said was something he didn’t want to deal with at that moment…if ever.

He’d heard that she’d been discharged so he wasn’t surprised when she turned up.Her arm was still in a sling but he was pleased to see she seemed to be walking normally.“Can I come in?”she asked, before pushing past him without waiting for an answer, as if she owned the place.Which, come to think of it, she did.

She stood in the centre of the lounge, facing him as he reluctantly allowed the door to swing shut after her. “So are we gonna talk about what you said?”she asked.

He didn’t want this conversation.If he could take the words back, he would.“Nothing to talk about.”

“You said you loved me, Aden.Is that nothing to talk about?”

“What do you want me to say, Nicole?You want me to get down on one knee?You want me to ask you out on a date?Or just ask you to go upstairs?”

That smile was back on her face, the one that suggested it was all a joke to her.“Well, if you did one of those things, you never know, I might say yes.”

He felt a stab of desire as he looked at her.He took a step closer, leaned forward to kiss her, even though he hated himself for feeling like that.His lips were millimitres away from touching hers when she whispered,“What about Belle?”

He recoiled from her at that, taking a step back, flinging the door open.“Get out.”She stood there, standing her ground, not moving.He thought of storming out himself, leaving her there to play whatever game she was playing, but he forced the instinct away.“What do you want, Nicole?”he asked at last.

He was shocked to see the hint of tears in her eyes as she answered.“I want someone to ask me out because they actually like me, not because they think I’ll say yes to anyone.I want to be the person that someone wants more than anyone else, not the person they’ve settled for.I want ‘I love you’ to mean more than that you just want someone to keep you warm at night when you’ve run out of options.”

“You think that’s why I said it?”he demanded,“You really don’t know me at all, do you?”

“Then tell me, Aden!”she shouted back,“Just be honest with me!”

“I love Belle!”he replied,“I always will!I’m not looking for a replacement because no-one could replace her.But when I’m with you…it’s better.I feel warm inside, even when I don’t want to.I hate that I feel that way about you, I didn’t want to ever feel that way about anyone but her.But I know that if anything happened to you, then another part of me would die with you.”

There were tears in her eyes still but he knew they were different now.Happy tears.“I think about us sometimes,”she admitted,“What it would be like being your girlfriend.You’re my best friend, Aden, the best friend I’ve ever had.And yeah, if anything happened to you, it’d kill me too.But this is so not the time for something to happen between us.”

He felt uncomfortable.Telling people how he really felt didn’t come easy to him.But he’d learned that trust had to start somewhere.And if there was one person alive that he trusted, it was her.“I didn’t say never,”he said at last.

“I know.Who knows, maybe one day.”She grinned, trying to dispel the serious mood, and held out her hand.“So…mates?”

He grinned back this time.“Course.”He shook the outstretched hand.To his surprise, she pulled him towards her and then did something she’d never done before:She kissed him on the cheek.

“See you around,”she told him cheerfully.

He watched her as she walked down the path, that warm feeling inside him.He still thought about Belle, he always would, but now he thought about Nicole as well.Part of him felt guilty about that.But a bigger part was glad that he wasn’t alone anymore.

Would she end up being his girlfriend?Would they be able to make each other happy?Was she, God help them both, the person he was destined to be with?

Maybe.One day.


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