Title: Shadow Dancing
Pairing: John Reese/Jordan Hester
Fandom: Person of Interest
Table: 1, stories_a_z
Disclaimer: This is entirely a product of my own imagination, and I make no profit from it. I do not own the lovely John Reese or Jordan Hester, just borrowing them for a while. Please do not sue.
***John blinked, rolling over and burying his face in the pillow. He didn't want to get up, didn't want to leave the warmth and comfort of Jordan's bed. He didn't want to let this man go, leave his apartment and spend the day chasing down someone he knew nothing about.
He wanted to stay here in bed with Jordan, to make love to him again, to spend the entire day with this man wrapped around him. He wanted to close the door and lock the rest of the world away, forget that either of them had any responsibilities, and lose themselves in each other.
He was tired of spending his life living in the shadows, even though he knew that at this point in time, it was the safest thing for him to do. And he liked the fact that he was helping people -- it was his penance, in a way, for doing too much of the opposite in the past.
But he had to think about the fact that he was no longer alone, John told himself with an inward sigh. He had Jordan in his life now -- and being in love changed everything. He couldn't keep flinging himself into the path of danger. And he couldn't expose Jordan to it, either.
What was he going to tell Jordan about what he did? He couldn't tell his lover everything; not only would that be putting Jordan in danger in too many ways to count, it would also be tearing down a veil of secrecy that he'd sworn to keep drawn around himself.
He had known when he'd decided to go to Jordan that these questions would come up, but he hadn't let himself think about just what they would mean. He would have to make some choices, and none of them were going to be easy, on himself or on the two people closest to him.
How was he going to explain what he'd done to Harold? He shouldn't have to explain it, he thought, letting annoyance overtake his common sense for a moment. Harold couldn't expect him to deny his needs. And one of those needs had been a driving urge to find someone to love.
That was weak, a voice in the back of his mind sneered before he pushed the thought away. He didn't need love -- he only wanted it. There was a big difference between wanting something and needing it. He didn't need Jordan in his life.
No, John told himself, slamming a mental door on that insistent little voice and refusing to listen to it. He did need Jordan. He'd needed this man ever since the first time they'd met, when Jordan had needed his help. It was much, much more than just desire.
They had only been together for one night, and already Jordan Hester was buried deep inside his heart and soul. Jordan had become a part of him; he had never connected with another human being in this way. And he knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that he was not giving Jordan up.
He would still have to stay hidden in those shadows, but if he was careful, he could still keep working with Harold and have Jordan in his life, too. It was going to be tricky to balance the two sides, light and dark, but he would do it. He had to.
He'd have to do a bit of shadow dancing, waltz Jordan around those shadows and make sure that they didn't touch him. He wasn't going to expose this man to any danger; he'd lost too many people he'd cared for in the past to lose Jordan in the same way.
Even though they might have some dangerous moments, he couldn't simply walk away. Not now that they had made love three times, each one better than the last. Jordan had burrowed deep into his heart, and there was no way that he could break away. Nor did he want to.
What would he have without Jordan in his life? He would still work with Harold; he didn't think anything would change that, unless Harold flatly refused to work with him any more now that Jordan was part of the equation. But other than that, he'd have nothing.
Without Jordan, there would be no more mornings like this, long lazy mornings when he could lie beside the man he loved and dream of a shared future. There would be no more nights like the one that had just passed, nights filled with lovemaking and discovery.
Of course, Harold wouldn't want him to tell Jordan anything about what they did -- but he would have to. He couldn't simply leave the man he was sleeping with in the dark; he had to find a way to give Jordan an idea of what he and Harold were doing without telling him everything.
Harold would never consent to telling Jordan about the machine. He would have to come up with some kind of explanation that was mostly the truth, but left that important fact out. He'd promised Harold that he wouldn't talk about it -- and he wouldn't.
But it rankled not to be able to tell Jordan everything. He'd learned that it was always a bad thing not to be completely truthful in a relationship, and lying to Jordan was no way to start this one. It would eventually lead to distrust and a breakup, and he didn't want that.
He wouldn't be technically lying, would he? John asked himself, knowing that he was trying his best to rationalize not telling Jordan everything even as the idea came into his mind. He would simply be omitting some of the details, that was all.
Once again, he would be shadow dancing with a lover, trying to keep parts of himself and what he did under cover of darkness while he put some of the aspects of his work out there in the light. He'd done it before; it shouldn't feel like such a problem this time.
Yet it did. He didn't want to keep Jordan in the dark about anything; he wanted to be completely honest with this man. John was sure that, if Jordan knew exactly what he and Harold did, he could help them in some ways. He was the kind fo person who'd want to do that.
Harold would never go for that, John thought, suppressing a sigh. He'd think it was bad enough that John had a lover, that there was someone in his life who he'd have to keep secrets from. But Harold didn't seem to have the same needs that John did.
His professional partner was apparently fine with not having a lover, or even anyone in his life other than John who he was fairly close to. John was tired of living like that; if Harold wanted to keep going in that way, he was welcome to, but John wanted something more.
Now that he had connected with Jordan, he wasn't going to let this man go. If Jordan wanted to walk away after their one night together, or at any point in the future, then he would have to accept that. But he wasn't strong enough to walk away himself. Not after last night.
John's arms tightened around Jordan, pulling the other man closer to him. He closed his eyes, pressing his face against the softness of Jordan's dark hair, inhaling the scent of him. This was how he wanted to wake up every morning; this was all he needed to make him happy.
Last night had been a revelation to him; he'd looked inside his heart and soul and knew that he'd found a part of himself that had been missing. It hadn't just been the lovemaking; he and Jordan had an incredible physical connection, but it went far deeper than just sex.
He had felt a connection to Jordan when he'd first discovered that this man was a victim who needed help, and that feeling had only grown stronger. He hadn't been able to write it off as mere sexual attraction; he had known from the first that it was more.
It was so hard for him to admit that he was falling in love; he'd told himself for so long that love wasn't an emotion he could afford to feel. Love had chewed him up and spit him out in the past, and he didn't want to feel like that again. Once had been more than enough.
Last night had cemented that attraction, and made him more sure than ever that it was love he felt and not simply desire. He wouldn't have made love to Jordan so thoroughly -- and so gently -- if he didn't love him. And he certainly wouldn't have wanted to stay the night.
Yes, he'd let himself fall head over heels in love -- and now that he'd admitted the fact to himself, he had to think of how the relationship was going to go forward without him telling Jordan everything about what he did -- or even exactly why he did it.
He didn't want to do any of the same shadow dancing with Jordan that he'd done with lovers in the past. He wanted to be completely honest with this man -- but he knew that he couldn't. If he wanted to keep Jordan safe, he had to keep his lover in the dark.
Not about everything, John told himself hastily. Just about some of the more dangerous aspects of what he did. He couldn't tell Jordan about the machine, and he couldn't tell him about some of the more unsavory things that he had to deal with on a daily basis.
Beside him, Jordan stirred in hs arms, bringing a smile to John's face. When his lover awakened, he fully intended to make love to him again, just to start the day off on a high note. He was sure that Jordan wasn't going to have any objections to that.
Somehow, he would find a way to make this work without revealing too much or exposing Jordan to any kind of danger, John vowed. There had to be a way -- and he was good at finding loopholes in what seemed to be impossible situations. He'd always done it before.
If there was a way to make this work without telling Jordan too much, he would find it. And if there wasn't .... well, he trusted Jordan implicitly. Harold would just have to learn to trust him, too -- and if he didn't, then John might have to terminate their professional relationship.
He would keep dancing in the shadows as long as he could, trying to keep Jordan out of the light of full disclosure. But he knew that at some point, no matter how intricate the dance steps were, they wouldn't work any longer. And he had no idea where they would go from there.
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