To Find the Unwilling

March 6, 2015: After Reese runs away from Metropolis, Hal confronts her in a small bed and breakfast in Ohio.

Dotsero, Colorado

A small po-dunk town.



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Mood Music:

Its been weeks since Reese left Hal a note, stating that she was leaving. Giving him instructions on how to take care of Max, leaving little to nothing behind that she was ever there, save for a pair of ruined shoes that she no longer needed, the odd box that he had given her and a branch that she always carried but left there due to the walking stick that she now had.

She traveled as she had always done, stowing away on cargo trains, hitch-hiking through town and trusting the civilization and the world to get her though. She didn't know where she was going, only that she was going east and northern most, far, far away from those who knew her.

At the end of the day? She believed it better, safer that way.

She found herself at a lovely bed and breakfast, the older woman there hadn't seen a foreigner in decades, much one as short and cute as her. The older woman even mentioned getting Reese into the chair, to cut off her long locks due to the knots that soon formed from weeks of lack of care. But, she offered her a comb, a brush, shampoo and a pair of clean clothes and shoes, more importantly, a bed. Which is what Reese lay in now, not asleep but trying her best to, the light of the moon not bothering her, but it's presence felt.
Hal Jordan had tracked Reese from a distance, but gave her the space she seemed to need. Whatever he felt - and he knew that he'd told her what he'd felt, in explicit terms - she seemed to need some time to both digest it and to figure out what was going in in her life. But he wouldn't just leave her out there, bait dangling for that crazed old lady with a taste for souls.

He checks in on her regularly, his ring capable of warping light to let him view her from a distance, perhaps a bit voyeuristic, but keeping him from worrying about her too much. After his recent battle with the robots assaulting the Baxter building, though, Hal needs her. Someone to talk to, to spend time with, just to…be. Someone who knows Hal Jordan -and- Green Lantern.

Which is why his voice comes from outside the door as he knocks on it, clad in a dark green turtleneck and black trousers, the requisite bouquet in hand, "Don't freak out. It's me," he calls simply, knowing she'll recognize his voice.

It's possibly why she couldn't sleep, even though she didn't feel she was being watched. She missed all of her friends, having someone who knows her to talk to her was one thing that she hated about re-adjusting to isolation. Just being quiet, silent. Cutting your words short and sneezing to redirect conversations to not give herself away. It was a practice that she fell out of love with decades ago. But she could do it so easily…

…or so she thought.

The knock on the door causes her a start, even more so the voice behind it. Her heart fluttered and beat like mad as she slowly made her way from the bed, her hands shaking as she tries to still her breath, counting out her paces until she reaches the door, feeling along it so that she could grip the knob and open it just enough to say 'come in' without words.

She steps a little to the side, her hand reaching back to feel along the dresser, fingers patting along the surface to try to find something to hit him with, in case he was an impostor.
Hal Jordan gives her a moment, his ring allowing him to sonar-map the room through the keyhole, getting a sense of where she was as she approaches. He puts on his shield at skin level just in case she does bonk him when the door finally opens.

"Hi, honey, we're not home," he says, when the door finally cracks. "Seriously, a bed and breakfast? Were you looking forward to discussing antiques with the creaky retirees or making small talk with Audrey from Poughkeepsie, who's never been on a real vacation before?" he says.

He extends the flowers, a bouquet chosen for scent rather than appearance, rich with lavender, "I know I was supposed to stay away, but, well…I just didn't want to anymore. I missed you. Besides, the heating in this place is terrible, you were going to wind up frostbitten without me to keep you warm."

Alright, no one could actually make her want to laugh like that, hardly anyone. It was him, so she doesn't bonk him upside the head. The door was pushed open, yet she backs away, her hand outstretched to make sure that she doesn't bust or break anything while she moves. "No.." She nearly laughs out, even though her hands still shake, she was oddly relaxed. In fact, she missed him too, but years of hardened thoughts and keeping to herself pretty much seals it.

The smell hits her nose before anything else, her hands reaching out to grip the bouquet, her hands wrapping around his for the briefest moments until she pulls them away to bring the flowers to her nose to smell.

"Lavender.." She murmurs softly, a slight smile drawing upon her lips as she takes a slight step forward in his direction, her hand reaching out to try to touch him. "I missed you too. But.. you need to leave."
Hal Jordan catches her hand when she reaches out, stepping into the room and closing the door behind him, "No, I need to stay. You want me to leave, except that you don't really want me to leave, you just tell yourself that because you think I need protecting. But I don't." he says.

He takes her hand and guides her over to sit on the edge of the bed, pulling up the chair so he can sit close enough for her to continue the hand-holding, "Do you think Madame Blavartsky or whatever her name is will forget about me just because you're not in the same place? I doubt it. I'm pretty sure I've pissed her off enough to be on her hitlist anyway. So the only thing you do going off on your own is split our forces." he says.

"No. I need you to leave. I have a man coming in a couple of hours and you can't be here." Clearly she was lying, her way of telling a joke was a little too.. bland. But in the end, he was right. She really didn't want to go, but she knew that he needed protecting. And for her to be as far away from them all. Just so they could live to fight another day.

As he guides her to the bed, she settles upon it, her hands reaching back to wrap the blanket around her shoulders, tucking her feet beneath it as one hand remains out to take his yet again.

"I'm not a force. I'm nothing but energy to be taken and eaten, Hal. Don't you see? You can defend and protect yourself fine. So can Flash. Kida. Starfire. But me?" She shakes her head completely. "I'm just there. I'm a way for you all to feel pain, to be hurt. To kill your resolve. I can't have that. I'm not a force, and you all are better focused without me there."
Hal Jordan narrows his eyes, "I've heard this spiel before, and I'm not buying it. I've seen you bring back people from death, heal injuries that should leave people crippled for life. You don't think that has value? You're this person who can do so much good and ease so much pain and we're supposed to just sit back and let some great demon cunt eat you alive? I don't think so. By the way, nobody can kill my resolve, certainly not that wrinkled bitch and not anybody else. If you haven't noticed, I'm kind of stubborn," he says.

"And, if we're just selfish and want to protect you for ourselves, because we don't want to lose you? Well…I'll take that on. I've been called selfish and way worse plenty of times. If my selfishness keeps you around and thwarts some evil fuck's will at the same time, seems like I should be selfish."

"You heard that spiel before because I speak the truth on this. Eventually, someones going to find a way to kill me. And it'll be worse for you now than it has ever been." She lets out a sigh, though nodding. "Yes. You're stubborn."

She still shakes her head, leaning back just enough to bring her feet out into the open, her head lowering as if she were staring towards her toes, wiggling them against the wooden floor below. "I'm tired, Hal. I don't want to argue with you. It's impossible." She presses her feet against the floor, standing briefly so that she could turn and climb upon the bed again. This time, she lays upon it, facing away from him.
Hal Jordan sighs, running a hand back through his hair. So much for sweeping her off her feet with gallantry. He climbs on and lays down, draping an arm over her if he can, so long as she doesn't throw him off.

"My father died when I was fourteen," he says softly, "We were waiting for him to land his plane, all of us on the landing strip, off to the side. Me, my mom, my brothers. And he just crashed. Maybe the landing gear locked up, maybe he didn't angle things right…maybe he had a seizure or a stroke and he was already dead by the time the plane exploded. But he died, just the same."

"My mom cried every day for a year. She still won't get on a plane. My brothers all dealt with it in different ways. Me? I raised hell, got in fights, got suspended from school. Then I ended up in the Air Force, 'cause I was going to do everything he never got to do. I was looking my greatest fear in the face and spitting it in the eye. But I still miss him. It still hurts," he says.

"But I have the pain because he was worth having in my life. The only other choice is to be totally alone, to care about nobody. I tried it and was pretty good at it for a while, but, now that I've had it the other way, I've got no intention of going back. Whether I lose you to wandering loose in the world or because that bitch got to you, I'd still lose you. At least, this way, I can stand up and fight for you," he says.

"Everything dies, Reese. Yes, even you. I knew that going in, even if I didn't know how close it might be. My Dad taught me that lesson a long time ago. So, don't think you're protecting me from anything, because you aren't.

Reese closes her eyes as she listens to the story about his father, what she felt from him was sadness, maybe even a little bit of anger. It was her natural empathy at play, but she resists the urge to return the comforting notion, since his arm was already around her. There was no sense in one-upping him in this. He was wise beyond his years, even though her running was both fool-hardy and dangerous. She willingly put herself out there, not knowing, that any moment she could have been snuffed out of existence. And it would have been her own doing.

"I'm sorry Hal.." She murmurs out, her voice breaking a little. She does wiggle and worm herself away from him, just so that the blanket could be fixed to drape over his shoulders as well. She faces him now, fixing the blankets against him, her fingers now touching against his cheek, his chin, a slight frown curling. She wasn't used to crying, even though her eyes burned with the need, the wetness upon her cheeks as she draws in a breath.

"I don't know what to say other than I'm so, so sorry."
Hal Jordan lays a hand softly on her cheek, feeling how warm she is, the blanket draped over them both. The sweater was probably a bad idea, in retrospect, but, like, sands through the hourglass and all that jazz. He lays his forehead against hers for a moment and then leans in and softly kisses her, just letting that speak for him for a moment until he finds his words.

"You haven't done a wrong thing. And I haven't given up yet, even if you have. But I don't want to talk about that anymore. It is what it is and we're clearly not going to agree about it. I'm here with you, now, and you're not getting rid of me, so you might as well just accept it and we'll see if you can't talk some sense into me another time," he says.

The lingered kiss was returned, all through a smile, her hands drawing back to sink around herself as she gives a faint nod once the kiss is broken. "I don't think that there's any talking you out of anything. Like.. when I say.. hey. I want to eat some kimchee and something super spicy. And you would be like, no. I want to eat some general tso's which is not super spicy and you do it. Or I tell you to let me walk on my own and I fall, and you probably try to catch me so that I don't hurt myself or feel any pain."

She sniffs a little, her hands soon drawing up to wipe away at her face, her lips pursing tightly as she tries to not continue the tears, even though they beg for more release. So, she changes the subject.

"Why now? Why come to find me now? Are you alright?"
Hal Jordan laughs, "It's true, I'm well known for my policing of spicy food consumption. The Sriracha people are still after me. My battles with Curry Man have been epic," he smiles. "And yes, I'll continue to protect you from pain any chance I get. Sorry, you're just going to have to put up with it," he grins.

To the question, he shakes his head, 'No, nothing wrong. I've just had a few battles lately and, afterwards…well, after something like that, I realized I was missing something and that something was spending time with you. So I figured I'd better rectify that."

She laughs, glad for this change of subject. Even though there was time lost between them, it seemed as if it wasn't at all.

"Were you hurt at all?" Which, was a silly question to ask. She felt that he kept himself.. and her shielded almost at all times, even when they first met she was sure she had it on her. She felt warm around him, safe, protected.

Hal Jordan wraps his arms around Reese and tucks her head under his chin, kissing the top of her head, "If I was, I sure can't feel it now," he says gently, just glad to be able to hold her again for a while, letting the worries and discontent go and just enjoying being present in the moment.

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