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Promises (or lack thereof) - Pt. 11/25

Challenge:  love_bingo   
Character(s)/Pairing(s):  Major Edward Beck/Heather Lisinski - other characters (canon and OC as needed)
Genre:  Het; Romance 
Rating:  PG to PG-13
Words:  709
Prompt:  LI1 - Birthdays and Anniversaries
Warnings:  Nothing too explicit but will warn for violence/implied torture in a couple of the later parts (I'll post a specific warning on those posts). Everything in the series and comics is fair game, so spoilers ahoy!  

Disclaimer:   I do not own, nor am I affiliated with, CBS or Jericho or...whoever else may actually own this show.  I just like to take the characters out to play.  I put them back, mostly unharmed...although not always...this is for fun, not profit and no copyright infringement is intended.

--------------------------- 

Heather slowly healed. As these things went, she told Emily, she'd got off lightly. They hadn't permanently scarred her physically; they'd never progressed to sexual assault, and if she sometimes still woke shaking and sweating from nightmares, well, that was only to be expected. 

Just a few more to add to the list, really, she thought ruefully.

As the five-month anniversary of Beck's departure got closer with still no word from him directly, she wondered what was truly happening in the east.

In the meantime, they were busy fighting a war of their own. So far no one in Cheyenne had connected Hayes' death with anyone in Jericho. An accident, a burned body, and the rest of his men smuggled across the border into Mexico - or so Hawkins told her and she chose to believe him - they'd at least managed to avoid any direct retaliation against Jericho.

But they were busy. They continued to replenish their arms and, with other towns who were determined to resist the ASA, they carefully planned, with steadily increasing frequency, guerrilla attacks against ASA convoys. They'd been sharing the truth, and more and more towns were starting to follow Jericho's lead. The coalition Beck had begun with his military colleagues was now beginning to spread to the civilians they'd once protected.

Jake and Hawkins and their allies were careful to ensure the locations of the guerrilla attacks were seldom in the same location twice, or used the same tactics each time. J&R and Ravenwood weren't stupid, though. They could almost feel the net of suspicion tightening around them - with Jericho directly in the centre.

In a half-hearted attempt to remember what "normal" was, Heather kept reminding herself that her birthday was also coming up. She doubted she'd celebrate it in any way although she couldn't help but hope that, through some coincidence of timing, she might hear from Beck - a note, a phone call; a rumor that was more personal than the propaganda that painted him as some larger-than-life enemy of the state, or the rumors that saw him more as a symbol than as a man.

She healed, she worked, she worried, and she hoped for the best. From a far more practical and pragmatic point of view, she helped Mimi doctor reports to J&R so they got a few extra supplies. She helped build generators and air filtration devices as the salt mine workers expanded the mine so Jericho's people would have a place to hide. She helped Hawkins plan, build and stock other, less obvious, places of refuge. She helped doctor documents so the troops Beck had left behind without the ASA's knowledge appeared to have been citizens for years, if not decades.

She'd made a promise to Beck, months ago, that they would hold Jericho as a safe haven within the ASA. That they would defend Jericho in his absence, and hold it as a place of refuge for him and his troops.

She'd promised him they would not go down without a fight, and she was going to do whatever she had to do to keep her promise.

The five-month anniversary came and went, and time marched towards her birthday - and six months since he'd left.

On the morning of her birthday, Dale came to her door, carrying a dirty and worn package. He handed it to her with a slight smile. He told her they'd picked it up weeks ago, with strict orders to deliver it on this day. Heather frowned, puzzled, then her face lit up as realization dawned.

She thanked Dale with a radiant smile, took the package into her livingroom and sat with it on her lap, unable to stop grinning.

She slowly opened the present, savoring the moment, and found a white t-shirt and a note, written in Beck's hard scrawl

Heather -

It's your birthday and I literally have nothing to give you but the shirt off my back. I hope you're safe and happy. Please know you're never far from my thoughts.

Beck

Heather thought her grin was going to split her face in two, as she hugged the shirt to her.

She slept in it every night. Somehow, it made the nightmares easier to bear.



Part 10          Part 12



 

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Quotes

"All right," said Susan. "I'm not stupid. You're saying humans need...fantasies to make life bearable."

REALLY? AS IF IT WAS SOME KIND OF PINK PILL? NO. HUMANS NEED FANTASY TO BE HUMAN. TO BE THE PLACE WHERE THE FALLING ANGEL MEETS THE RISING APE.

"Tooth fairies? Hogfathers? Little --"

YES. AS PRACTICE. YOU HAVE TO START OUT LEARNING TO BELIEVE THE LITTLE LIES.

"So we can believe the big ones?"

YES. JUSTICE. MERCY. DUTY. THAT SORT OF THING.

-- Susan and Death in Hogfather by Terry Pratchett

---------------------

"And no practical definition of freedom would be complete without the freedom to take the consequences. Indeed, it is the freedom upon which all the others are based."

-- Lord Vetinari in Going Postal by Terry Pratchett

---------------------

They thought the Library was a dangerous place because of all the magical books, which was true enough, but what made it really one of the most dangerous places there could ever be was the simple fact that it was a library.

-- Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett

---------------------

As a wizard, it was something that Ponder had only before encountered in acorns: a tiny soundless voice which said, yes, I am but a small, green, simple object - but I dream about forests.

-- Interesting Times by Terry Pratchett

---------------------

In the 24th century, there will be no hunger. There will be no greed. And every child will know how to read.

-- Gene Roddenberry, as repeated by Jonathan Frakes in the documentary How William Shatner Changed the World

---------------------

We've got two lives, one we're given and the other one we make
And the world won't stop, and actions speak louder
Listen to your heart, and what your heart might say
Everything we got, we got the hard way.

-- Mary Chapin Carpenter, The Hard Way from the album Come On, Come On

---------------------

Cause when they own the information, oh
They can bend it all they want.

-- John Mayer, Waiting on the World to Change from the album Continuum

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Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says, "I'll try again tomorrow."

-- Mary Anne Radmacher, as seen in Uncle John's Bathroom Reader Tales to Inspire

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I never loved the soldier
Until there was a war.
Or thought about tomorrow
'til my baby hit the floor.
I only talk to God
When somebody's about to die.
I never cherished freedom
Freedom never cries.

-- Five for Fighting, Freedom Never Cries from the album Two Lights

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It may sound absurd: but don't be naive
Even heroes have the right to bleed
I may be disturbed: but won't you concede
Even heroes have the right to dream

-- Five for Fighting, Superman (It's Not Easy) from the album American Town

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Had a dream last night took a time travellin' ride
Back to my childhood where those monsters reside
They snack on innocence and dine on self-esteem
But I like to be in touch with what makes me scream
Vampires, mummies and the Holy Ghost
These are the things that terrify me the most.
No alien, psychopath or MTV host
Scares me like vampires,mummies and the Holy Ghost.

-- Jimmy Buffett, Vampires, Mummies and the Holy Ghost from the album Fruitcakes

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"I want to believe that... the dead are not lost to us. That they speak to us... as part of something greater than us - greater than any alien force. And if you and I are powerless now, I want to believe that if we listen, to what's speaking, it can give us the power to save ourselves."

-- Fox Mulder, The X-Files from the episode The Truth, pt. 2
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