8:45 A.M.

"There you are," David said seeing Rachel come down the stairs. "I need to talk to you."

"Where's Bobby?" She asked reaching the last stair.

"In the kitchen, are Jack and Harper still upstairs getting ready for school?"

Ignoring his question her eyes widened knowing Erin was headed there too and knowing the two were probably alone together now. "Erin's in there too, we should probably…"

"Rachel, the kids," he said reaching for her arm and stopping her from walking towards the kitchen. "Are they still upstairs?"

"Yeah they're fine, but we should go and check if Bobby and Erin need…what happened to your face?"

"Nothing." He said turning his head when her hand reached for his wound.

"You're bleeding, did Bobby hit you?"

"Yeah but to be fair I hit him first."

"With the kids in the house, why were you two fighting?"

"Forget about that, you and I need to talk." His voice leaving no room for argument, still holding onto her wrist David guided them toward the downstairs bathroom. It wasn't until they were inside with the door closed behind them that David let her go.

"You should let me clean that up." She said walking over to the cabinets under the sink and grabbing the first aid kit.

"It's fine."

"Of course it is, you just have blood running down the side of your face, now let me clean it before Jack or Harper see you." She guided him to sit on the toilet lid and began dabbing at the small trickle of blood running from his brow. "So are you going to tell me what the two of you came to blows over?" Rachel was going to try really hard to ignore the fact she was standing between his legs or that his face was at equal level of her breasts.

"You." David kept his hands braced on each knee, willing himself not to reach out and pull her closer.

"Me?" She asked grabbing another square of gauze to dab at the last few droplets of blood. The cut was fairly small and it didn't seem to be swelling, he'd be fine.

"Well more like a difference in opinion."

His answer was rather vague meaning he didn't want to get into it and Rachel decided not to push. "Well I don't like the two of you fighting, especially because of me." She wasn't too worried, there was very little that could ever get between the two cousins, knowing them both as long as she had she knew throwing punches was just another way the two related to one another.

"Seems like you've been doing this a lot lately." He began wincing when the spray of antiseptic touched his cut.

"Doing what?"

"Putting me back together."

"I don't understand." She said placing a small band aid over the sore and turning to throw away the wrapper and soiled gauze strips.

It was now or never. "Who wrapped my hand Rachel?"

Rachel froze bending down over the small trash can realizing she'd been discovered. "What are you talking about?" She straightened and returned to the sink to return the contents of the first aid kit to the box.

David stood then, standing close to her. "I'm talking about I cut my hand last night and when I woke up this morning it was wrapped, here I thought Sophia did it but she didn't did she?"

"I thought we agreed to talk once the kids were gone."

"We did until I found out Bobby knows more about what's going on between the two of us than I do."

"What did he tell you?" She asked turning around to face him.

David crossed his arms, fixing her with a questioning stare. "Not much so why don't you?"

Rachel turned her back to him once more and bent down to put the first aid kit away. "It was nothing really." She wasn't a good liar and as well as David knew her she knew he'd be able to spy a lie right away so avoidance was her best bet.

"It was so nothing both of you left three messages each on my voicemail, like you were worried about me, asking me to call you back."


"Who wrapped my hand Rachel?"

Heaving a sigh there was no use putting it off any longer. "I did."

"You did, how…"

"I was worried about you okay and so I got in a cab and I went looking for you. I found you at Tony and Sophia's, you were asleep on the couch when I saw your hand and wrapped it. That's it."

"You went looking for me?" David didn't know how to take that, it was an obvious sign of her still caring for him which he absolutely loved but she'd been worried and he had no idea why.

"It was no big deal really."

"Why don't I believe you?"
"Excuse me?"

"I said I don't believe you, there's something else going on here, I want you to tell me."

"We'll talk about this when the kids are gone." Rachel said hoping to put an end to this interrogation and walking towards the door.

Frustration settled in his belly and David couldn't stand it anymore. He had no problem talking once the kids were gone but he knew she was using them as a buffer to hold him at bay and he was sick of it. "You afraid they're gonna hear us? Don't worry, all the times we made love this bathroom and no one's heard you scream, I'm pretty sure these walls are sound proof."

Rachel's jaw dropped in shock and spinning around it took mere seconds to recover before her own anger jumped to the forefront. "I wouldn't be so sure about that but maybe I'm just louder with Malcolm."

David almost stumbled back from the power of her words and seeing his stunned face she took that as her chance to escape. Rachel barely turned the doorknob before the power of David's hand shot out to the door pushing it back closed. Reaching for her upper arm he turned her around, her back pressed up against the door, facing him, his face angrier than she'd almost ever seen.

It wasn't often, but in the course of his life where Rachel was concerned David went a little crazy. He wasn't sure what kind of affect she had on him but there had been many moments in their history where he really did lose his mind. It wasn't so much he lost it, it was more like he floated out of his body and he stared back down at himself and the self still on earth was liberated of fear, caution, hesitation or better sense. At this very moment in time David was being struck by that familiar feeling of lunacy.

"Is that so?" His voice just above a whisper, like the eerie calm before the storm, with her words David's entire body was pulled tight as a drum, including the five fingers wrapped around her wrist. His grip not tight, but enough to give Rachel pause. She'd spoken without thinking, anger at his words burning away all her rationality.

It wasn't the first time his mind had gone there, Rachel being with Malcolm. He had no right considering the many women he'd been with, but he could say none of his encounters ever meant anything. Rachel didn't give herself to another lightly. She had to really feel something and if the idea of them having sex wasn't bad enough, and it was bad, it was the idea of the shared intimacy that drove him to irrational jealousy. He fucking hated it and to say Malcolm was better, that he'd done something David hadn't or couldn't was just…his jaw ticked twice with barely controlled rage.

He wanted to show her, right here and now he was the best, her first and if not her only, certainly the better lover. His sizeable ego couldn't stand somehow being second, not with her, never with her and not with this.

The ground underneath her feet was shaking. He was too close, remembrance too near. The hand encircling her wrist though still, acted as a fishing line reeling her closer. The almost wild yet narrowed attention of his eyes darkened like a blue summer storm darkened without warning once she realized his focus lowered to her lips. She didn't know, hadn't realized her tongue had peaked forth, licking a dry bottom lip. He was going to kiss her. It was no question and with that stunning realization her entrapped hand held against his chest suddenly opened. Placed solidly against his heart the war waged on, to push him away or pull him near? Rachel's fisting of the blue material of his shirt spoke of her mutual desire and need.

It was sudden, like a light being turned on in a dark room David forgot the very stupid and unimportant point he was trying to prove. What did Malcolm, what did anyone have to do with this moment. There was no one and nothing else for him and by the tightened grip of his shirt he knew for her either. His other hand positioned just above her head against the door gave him perfect leverage to lean into her. His face came closer, the distance between them nearly inexistent. His body hummed, awakening from a long winter's slumber, aware, alive in a way meaningless flings could never quite inspire. David could kiss her right now if he wanted and he wanted…but not yet.

Rachel stopped feigning indifference long ago. Try as she might to keep her face neutral, remain unaffected by their close proximity, the very foundation of what made her a woman shook as his lips hovered just centimeters above hers. She could taste his breath and memories rushed back like a flood, if he hadn't already done it he would have stolen her breath away. He'd been her first real kiss, who she thought was going to be her last and after two years absence he was this close again. The heat of his presence warmed her all over and Rachel's body reacted on instinct, from memory, familiarity. In his arms is where she'd once belonged. For too many years this truth had sustained her every waking moment to not slip back into a long forgotten habit.

Bright wide brown eyes looked up at him reminding him of the girl she once was but allowing himself, David took in how time had aged her, had changed her. He saw moments, flashes of her life, good, bad and regretfully ugly and he'd been there for it all. Looking into her eyes David was able to look back and see what she'd seen, he saw himself, remembered what he used to be, saw his rough edges, edges made smooth by her love.

"What are you doing?" Rachel whispered, it was a silly question, both knew what he was doing, but Rachel could not give in easily, she had to fight it in some way. Flimsily, clumsily as her attempt at halting this was, her lips moved of their own accord. The warning system in her head firing down signals at rapid fire succession demanding she cease and desist.

He smiled. A lazy Sunday afternoon smile that dragged humor slowly across his lips, lighting his eyes with a fire that could consume her if she let them. Damn him Rachel thought, she was coming out of her skin and he found humor in all of this. "Has it been so long," he whispered back, so close his breath ghosted over her face, making her insides quiver, "So long you even have to ask?"

Her mind formed a response, her better sense shouting her down, it was dangerous, theirs was not just a kiss, theirs was where her children were first created. Their kiss was powerful, magic, no other's could make a Harper or a Jack. His lips touching hers, their kiss had made the world a better place. The touch of his lips had shaped her into a woman, helped to give the plump swell to her breasts and the width to her thighs, virgin legs making way, making room for his fit, then working to give life to his children. Her lips parted to speak, when David swooped in and kissed her.

Like a key sliding into a lock their lips touched in the way only they knew. When rationalization and doubt, fear and hurt stood between them the body worked from a place of nature, of know how. Muscle memory led David's hands to the sides of her face, his thumbs caressing the apples of her cheeks. It made Rachel's head tilt just slightly to the right; it made her fingers grip his shirt at the sides of his waist, bunching the material so tight her hands ached.

Tears hovered just underneath her closed lids but luckily none fell. It hurt so much. It burned, scorching her insides, the instant of initial touch. A familiarity and recognition of something primal, true and withstanding came together in an eruption. Something so strong Rachel gasped on contact and David swallowed her exhale, stealing her breath right along with her heart.

In a world where men strived for right the heart shaped top and supple bottom of her lips were his. His tongue and his fingers had traced their outline, her lips were the canvas in which he painted his hello and said his goodbye. Made love to first and the site where he initially declared to her heart and his, she would be his wife. He kissed her longer, deeper, it'd been too long, he'd almost forgot and he no longer wanted to live in a world where he almost forgot what it was to kiss her. To know her this way.

David pulled back, giving Rachel air; her eyes remained closed fearing what the world would look like once she opened them. Yet against her own accord her lashes fluttered open. Heavy hooded, passion drunk eyes lifted and stared into the face of the man she'd once given forever to. "David…" she started, but like walking off a cliff her thoughts just fell away.

"You taste good." He smirked, his thumb rubbing small circles against her cheek, probably the reason for her lack of coherence. "It's what I thought the first time I kissed you."

He was staring down at her lips, hungry for another taste and she could feel herself responding in kind. He wanted her somethin' fierce and everything that made Rachel a woman swooned under the eye of his attention. David leaned in again but with her better sense Rachel turned her head slightly. "It wasn't me."

Frowning, David refused to let her go. "What?"

"The candy…apple, the candy apple you bought me from the park."

"Hmmm…you sure?"

"Yeah. It wasn't me…"

It happened suddenly, not as quick as the first but his leaning in to kiss her jellied her knees just the same. Rachel stood frozen, entranced, enthralled and possessed as his tongue entered her mouth, swiping at the walls of her cheeks, gliding along the length of her tongue. His lips massaging hers, rendered all motor function and brain wave activity to cease. Oh how he kissed her.

Pulling away, this time Rachel was better able to open her eyes and when she did she was greeted with another triumphant smirk, like he knew something she didn't.

"No it's you." He breathed, resting his forehead against hers. Both closed their eyes again and just rested.

Damn him. He was her heart, she was supposed to grow old with this man, die in his arms, he was supposed to be the end of her. Rachel reached up to hug him, standing on tip toes, her arms wrapped around broad shoulders, tears moistening tightly closed eyes and she simply held him. Held onto a past life she still remembered so vividly, too vividly. David Morgan was the architect of her heart. He'd shaped it, fashioned it to fit him and only him. How utterly impossible it was to try and make it house another.

David didn't know what it was that made her suddenly reach for him but he clung to her just the same. Burying his head into the curve of her neck he released a shaky sigh. How had he ever let this go? He'd gone out into the world thinking there was something else, something other than this that might have ever been able to complete him. There could never have been a greater wrong in the entire existence of mankind. It was here, in her arms, her touch mending a long broken body, heart and spirit. A man was only so much and it was woman, it was her that could only finish where he stopped short. He felt her hot tears against his skin and held her tighter, needing to mend all that he had broken. "Please don't cry Pretty Girl."