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30 May 2008 @ 11:59 pm
Numb3rs Fic: To Have and To Hold  
Written for numb3rs100 Challenge May 2008 Rewind – Conversation, Chemistry, Connection, Confession

Title: To Have and To Hold
Pairing/Characters: Don/Robin
Rating: PG13
Word Count: 800
Spoilers: Seasons 1-4
Summary: Don and Robin have a discussion that affects the rest of their lives
Notes/Warnings: Read the disclaimer on my LJ

001. Conversation

Seven-thirty at night wasn't a normal time to get home from work, but Robin was used to leaving the office well after dark on trial prep nights and she'd actually made an effort to leave fairly early this time.

She almost lost the fight to juggle her briefcase, purse, dry cleaning bag and keys as she walked through her front door - already unlocked she noted, unsurprised since Don's SUV was parked out front.

She dropped her armload on the kitchen counter and headed out to the backyard where she saw Don pacing, unusually nervous. She could tell from the tension in his body that something had him agitated.

"Hey," she ventured tentatively, trying not to startle him, waiting to reach out to him until he acknowledged her. "I didn't expect you to pick me up for our anniversary dinner until 8."

"I-I couldn't wait," he stammered, flashing her a slightly strained smile before he kissed her cheek in greeting.

His hand held hers a little too tightly and she stiffened, worried.

"Don, is everything okay?"

"Maybe..." The carefully constructed expression on his face did nothing to assuage her concerns. "Maybe you should sit down. We need to talk."

028. Chemistry

Don led Robin by the hand over to a wrought iron bench beneath the rose arbor he'd built for her back when they started dating the first time. The blossoms exploded in a cavalcade of color, a rich and vibrant red, and he plucked one from the bough overhead, offering the bloom to Robin with a flourish of sorts.

"A beautiful flower for a beautiful woman," he murmured.

"You don't have to flatter me, Don," Robin teased. "You already won me over."

He knelt in front of her, interlacing his hand with hers as she held the rose.

"I just want to make sure you know you're the only woman for me," he told her, his tone serious. Despite the gravity of his demeanor Robin acted light and playful even though it seemed forced.

"So says the eternal ladies man," she scoffed tauntingly.

Don closed his eyes for a few seconds, a twinge of pain crossing his features. "Liz, Nikki, the others... Even Kim I think now... They were about chemistry, adrenaline, filling a need..." He opened his eyes, demanding Robin's full attention with the intensity of his gaze. "It's you that I fell in love with. Just you, Robin."

023. Connection

As Robin watched, Don let his head hang down, his voice and body language apologetic. Her heart rate quickened with concern at this uncharacteristic show of emotion.

"I know I'm not much of a catch. I work too much, I can be a real pain in the ass. I'm obsessive, temperamental..."

"A commitment-phobe..." she interjected lightly.

"Not anymore," Don said solemnly. "You cured me. I'm not afraid anymore."

He pressed a kiss to the back of her hand with such gentleness it took Robin aback, leaving her breathless.

"Bradford?" she asked, bewildered.

Don shook his head. "It wasn't Bradford; it was you. You gave me a second chance. I hadn't realized how much our relationship - the connection between us - had become a part of me until you came back. I don't ever want to lose that again. I don't ever want to lose you again."

Don reached into his pocket and Robin's eyes widened with shock as he brought out a tiny black box.

"Robin, I'm not worthy to be your husband, but if you would do me the honor of being my wife I swear to love you with everything I have for the rest of my life."

102. Confession

Don opened the box, trying not to let his hands tremble, and showed her the ring.

A tiny gasp escaped her as she stared at the solitaire.

"Don, I... I don't know what to say..."

"Well," he managed, his mouth dry. "There are two answers and I don't think it's that hard to figure out which one I want to hear."

He watched apprehensively as she hesitated. "I have a confession to make," she said finally. "When we split up the first time... It wasn't because I didn't think you could commit. It was because I didn't think I could."

Don's chest clenched and he unconsciously backed away, wounded.

"Blaming you was wrong, but I've changed - like you. Don, you're not unworthy. I'm just as flawed, just as human." She pulled him back closer to her. "So if you'll have me the way I am? My answer is yes."

A rush of love enveloped him as he slipped the ring out of the box and shakily put it on her finger.

"To have and to hold..." he said reverently.

"From this day forward," Robin added.

Don kissed the hand now graced with an engagement ring.

"Til death do us part..."

Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on May 31st, 2008 08:27 pm (UTC)
I confess I was too tired to post this last night so I backdated it. /hangs head/ Mea culpa.

I tried something different with this four drabble fic: alternating point of view. I don't feel it was successful at all and the whole fic suffered for it. I kept trying to fix it, but it never really got better. I finally gave up and decided it was what it was and it needed to be published regardless.

Some experiments rock and some, well, some get chalked up to experience. /shrugs/

Very special thanks to beta melissima for her assistance with this fic.


Emma DeMarais
hear me roarmagisterequitum on May 31st, 2008 08:33 pm (UTC)
I liked it. It's heartfelt and real. I love the confessions from both Don and Robin. The alternating POV is not terrible and isn't bad. It's actually neat to get a chance to look at both perspectives.
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on May 31st, 2008 08:41 pm (UTC)
Thanks. No, it's not terrible per se, just nothing like what I had in my head for this story, you know? It sucks to have a vision and fail to articulate it.

There are parts of it I do like at least, so it's not a total loss. I had just done so much better with previous Rewinds, I guess I had my hopes up.

/hasn't ficced much lately/
/feels rusty/
DarkElyelysium1996 on May 31st, 2008 09:29 pm (UTC)
it is nice to see sweetness...

you had them both admit that they are not perfect but flawed seems to be a connection for them
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on May 31st, 2008 09:36 pm (UTC)
Thanks. It's nice to see you comment. :-)

I prefer flawed heroes, so it's nice to pair him up with a flawed heroine - especially after a flawed courtship. /grins/
Jelsemium: Smilin' Don Eppesjelsemium on June 1st, 2008 02:55 am (UTC)
This drabble series worked for me! :D

I liked that they both acknowledge their own failings. Better to get into these things with your eyes open.

Good work!
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on June 1st, 2008 03:25 am (UTC)
Thank you!

BTW, I was talking to someone new to the fandom and they said how much they were enjoying your fic specifically so good on you!
tobbles_plinktobbles_plink on June 2nd, 2008 10:34 pm (UTC)
I'm very glad to see that someone else thinks the Don/Robin pair is a good one. That has been the best ship so far in the show I think (Charlie and Amita still leave me cold). Thank you for sharing this with us.
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on June 2nd, 2008 11:04 pm (UTC)
Thank you! Sadly RM has chemistry with so few people it took someone he'd worked with previously to get us to sit up and take notice. I'm glad Michelle Nolden was able to return after she had her baby and reprise the role of Robin, if just to get us past Liz. /grins/

I did kind of like Don/Kim too, but then I liked Season 1 Don so much better period.

I have a long Don/Kim and Don/Billy drabble series coming up so I should be able to indulge that ship while still writing Don/Robin in fic like these on the side.
tobbles_plinktobbles_plink on June 2nd, 2008 11:24 pm (UTC)
Oh I agree I very much liked first season Don so much better. And you're right first season Don worked well with Kim or Billy. Liz was really a mistake-I'm glad that he came to his senses rather quickly (now only if Charlie would figure out that Amita is just all wrong for him). I'm definitely looking forward to your Don/Kim and Don/Billy drabble series!
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on June 2nd, 2008 11:31 pm (UTC)
Good luck on the Amita front. I don't see much hope there unfortunately.

The D/K and D/B series is called Complicated. I hope to launch it later this month.
boymommytotwo: don smileyboymommytotwo on June 12th, 2008 01:54 am (UTC)
i like this. it's somehow comforting to see humble!don, apprehensive!don... i love him, too...
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on June 12th, 2008 01:57 am (UTC)
Thanks. One has to imagine that most men are a bit overwhelmed by proposals - even if they *have* experience. ;-)
(Deleted comment)
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 2nd, 2010 11:02 pm (UTC)
Yay Don/Robin!

I really need to update my memories for this year.

I adore writing Don/Robin proposal fic. I kind of have a thing for it. LOL Even the canon version was so underwhelming, I'm tempted to write it again and make Don do a better job. /snicker/

I'm glad you enjoyed this and happy to hear you're reading my back catalogue. Nice to know it's not forgotten! Thank you!
(Deleted comment)
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 2nd, 2010 11:19 pm (UTC)
Yes! OMG I so wanted Robin to smack him for that lame attempt at the first one. Grr. Don, you've proposed before, you know better. (At least with Kim he had a ring ready!)

But yeah, it was heartfelt, but the timing sucked. (At Charlie's event? Srsly?)
(Deleted comment)
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 2nd, 2010 11:28 pm (UTC)
See, from that POV I think he should have asked her at home that night then told them the next day before they left for the airport. Or maybe drove somewhere romantic to ask her with a view... I don't know. The stairwell? When there's a perfectly lovely koi pond out back?

I see your point about Don and Kim, but she didn't reject him until long after he proposed and she said yes so he shouldn't IMHO have as bad a feeling about the proposal itself vs getting to the point of proposing at all.
(Deleted comment)
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on August 2nd, 2010 11:43 pm (UTC)
I've heard that some guys carry around the ring waiting for 'the moment' so I guess that works. :-)
Ma Yumi: Don5ym4yum1 on October 23rd, 2011 10:58 pm (UTC)
This is so more real and perfect! thank you, again! You're giving me great moments to dream about! <3<3