[Agent Carolina is offline]
"Regardless of the state of our personal relationship, he’s still a member of my team. It wouldn’t hurt any less."
(*chants* murder them murder them murder them murder them *imsorry*)
((oh honey, no apologies necessary))
"Last time I checked, I don’t."
"And I’m pretty sure we’re talking about two different people here. I think I know Wash pretty well, and he respects authority a little too much to say shit like that."
"I’m sorry, what?”
Wash hated it when people cried around him, as if social interactions weren’t bad enough for him, he had no skill in helping people with their own emotions. He wasn’t a sympathizer, hell he wished he himself didn’t have emotions to deal with. The only thing worse than someone crying around him, was someone he cared about crying around him. It was a sight that tightened his chest and constricted on his throat like a crushing hand. It made him hurt because he knew he couldn’t help them as much as he wanted to.
That didn’t stop him from trying of course.. damn morals.
Kneeling before his friend and leader, Wash chewed at his bottom lip before speaking, “Boss? What- what’s wrong..?”
Wash’s chest seemed to implode itself at hearing her speak of Maine. He was still… upset over that, but now it was more an upset that came from seeing the most important people to you missing something or someone they need. This new bubbling of emotion mixed with what he’d already felt upon seeing Carolina cry and made him feel ill.
Wetting his lips, Wash shook his head and moved forward to slowly wrap her into a hug. it felt odd being the one to initiate such a thing but that didn’t stop Wash, “Rachel- Maine… Maine needs you, just like you need him.” Wash murmured, rubbing gentle circles into his leader’s back, “The thing is.. is that- You both have reasons to be angry but now you need to compromise and forgive. Maine is a straightforward guy, he’s not going to lie in the face of a challenge and… the Director is your father, you should tell him to separate feelings from work and to stay out of your personal life.” Pulling back but keeping his hands at her shoulders, Wash looked her dead in the eyes, “Maine isn’t and never will be a person who backs down and the way the Director outright challenged him about it? Of course Maine would take it.”
"That doesn’t give him the right to just give personal information about you, out though but you needed to talk. Both of you. This entire team… is the most lacking in communication I’ve ever seen and your relationship would benefit from better communication."
Going silent for a few moments, the steel freelancer looked down and swallowed. He didn’t expect his words to help, but he wanted to try. He wanted them to be happy again. “Lina…. I’m not going to lie… I think what you said was.. over the top- Maine hears that all the time.. all the time. From other people and from himself and hearing you, someone he gave himself to completely, say that? I-I can’t imagine… what that was like.. I won’t even pretend that I do. But- he doesn’t want to be told that you love him, he hears apologies everyday from people who turn right back around and do the same thing over again. He wants you to show him that he’s loved, that he means something. He wants to be shown that you aren’t like the other people who’ve ridiculed him for something that was out of his control- Something that happened to him in the line of duty. He needs you, I know he does..”
Unlike the last time Wash lectured her, Carolina didn’t even consider leaving or getting angry or upset. She leaned into the hug, let him rub her back, and listened wordlessly as he spoke. Some days she really wondered how Wash could be a better leader than her at times, or why he wasn’t leading a team of his own at this point. Fresh-faced as he was, he knew a hell of a lot more about team dynamics than her own squad. As he went on and on, the sinking pit in the redhead’s stomach didn’t even feel like it was just in her stomach anymore, but sucking her into a bottomless void from the inside out instead. She had never felt so sick.
"I know I fucked up," she said when Wash was finished, voice fracturing and breaking the entire time. "From the second I said what I did, there hasn’t been a goddamn day when I didn’t regret it. And he trusted me- I don’t even know if he can anymore, after what I said. He’s taken bullets for me, and that was how I decided to repay him.”
She sniffled once, then twice, a little quieter, and stretched the bottom hem of her tank top up to dry her eyes again. “I wouldn’t blame him if he decided he hates me,” she muttered bitterly, “like he hates everyone else that treats him like I did.”