Loss (Act II), Part Ten


Some good conversations with @kkruml and @thefraserwitch helped mop this part up to be what I wanted. I owe them each a beverage of their choosing. 💕 This will be one of the last flashback-y type chapters. In Part Four we knew what Jamie was up to from the time he left on the business trip until he was found. In this chapter, we learn what Claire was up to from the time he left until she learned what happened on the hike™.

Loss: Act I and ficlets

Loss: Act II: Part One | Part Two | Part Three | Part Four | Part Five | Part Six | Part Seven | Part Eight | Part Nine

Loss: Act II
Part Ten

Watching Jamie sleep, my mind wandered to the day after he left for his business trip.  It had started as one of those unremarkable days designed to be profound only in its ability to be meaningless as soon as it was over. An anonymous workday in a sequence of three hundred and sixty-five days, I had not appreciated the peace in assuming that it would blend into my memory as just another day.

I woke Monday morning at 5:00 to nothing from Jamie. In Los Angeles, time was just rounding the corner to an hour that he would consider going to bed.  

It was early enough to get an answer.

Half asleep, I rolled onto my back, ignoring Buffalo Bill’s groaning protest and the fact that I had exactly forty minutes to get to the hospital. Chewing on my thumbnail, I frowned as his phone went directly to voicemail.  I left a deflated, rambling little message, asking him to call me back.

I stared at the last text I had from him: Beat the jet lag. Eating lots of ramen at the shop around the corner from the hotel. I’ve learned I like runny eggs on everything. You would hate it here. Going hiking with some guys from the LA office.  Tell me when it works to call you. I don’t want to wake you. 

I quickly typed out a series of messages, attempting to be coy.


I like runny eggs. Maybe enough to overcome the vapidity of LA. Do I need to dye my hair blonde to visit?

Then, moments later:

Call me whenever. Wake me up.

I wanted to purge the aftertaste of our argument from my mouth and decided to banter:

Maybe you won’t like the idea of me as a blonde? Or maybe you like it too much? Out with it Fraser. (Really, call me whenever. If I’m wrists-deep in human, I just won’t answer.)


I sent one final message before getting ready for the day:

I’m going to work. ILY. xx.

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