Written By: _alicesprings
Author's Notes: A sort of fix-it fic, inspired by this picture. Medical information is about as accurate and well researched as it was on the show (not at all), so it should fit in with canon just fine! Thank you to rhiannonhero for betaing this for me!
“What’s this?” Reid asks, holding up a photograph.
“What’s what?” Luke says, turning from the bookshelf he’s shoving books onto, and promptly tripping over a box, not for the first time today.
“Ow,” Luke says wryly, rubbing his injured knee as Reid rolls his eyes and holds the picture out for Luke to inspect.
“Oh god,” Luke says. “I didn’t realize I still had that.”
“You look like someone just killed your puppy,” Reid says, turning the picture around for a closer look. “What’s with the face?”
“I look like my boyfriend was marrying a woman,” Luke says dryly.
Reid chuckles but the laughter dies in his throat when he realizes Luke’s not kidding. “Who did what now?”
Luke sighs. “It’s a long story.” The doorbell rings, and Luke changes the subject. “Pizza’s here. Let’s take a break, I’m starving.” Reid follows Luke out to the living room, where he grabs some water from the fridge while Luke pays for the pizza. They drop down onto the couch, ravenously devouring half the pizza in silence before Reid speaks.
“So,” Reid says around a mouthful of dough and cheese. “Tell me the story.”
Luke pulls a face, but swallows his mouthful. “Noah married an Iraqi girl so that she could stay in the country in order to keep her safe.”
“You call that long? No wonder you were so impressed the first time you saw me naked.”
Luke rolls his eyes and throws a slice of pepperoni at Reid, and he laughs, scooping it up and flinging it back into the pizza box.
“You’re not getting away that easy, Mr. Snyder. I want all the dirty details.”
Luke frowns. “What’s the big deal?” Reid says around the last slice of pizza. “So Mr. Mayer married some Iraqi girl, it was all a formality, right?”
Luke hesitates, biting his bottom lip. “It was supposed to be. It should have been. But it didn’t feel like a formality at the time,” Luke says, looking Reid in the eye finally. “It hurt.”
Reid wipes the grease from his fingers on a wad of napkins then slides closer to Luke. “Tell me,” he says gently.
Luke swipes a hand across his face then exhales noisily. “Noah and I had only been dating a few months,” Luke begins. “Less than a year. We hadn’t even slept together yet.”
Reid snorts, and Luke’s mouth turns up in the corner. “Shut up,” he mutters.
Reid holds his hands up in the ‘I surrender’ pose, and grins. Luke and Reid had waited several months before their first time, though not from lack of desire, and when Reid had found out that Luke and Noah had waited almost two years, he’d actually cackled as Luke had blushed furiously.
“So what happened?” Reid urges Luke to continue.
Luke sighs. “This girl, Ameera, showed up in Oakdale looking for Noah’s dad. He’d been involved with her mother in Iraq, and after she died Ameera came to the States to try and find him, but he was in prison.”
Reid’s jaw tightens. “Because he’d tried to kill you. Twice,” Reid says, running a finger along the scar on Luke’s back.
“Anyway,” Luke continues. “Her visa was about to expire and we couldn’t let her get sent back there, so we came up with a plan to keep her here.”
“A green card marriage,” Reid guesses.
“Yeah, it was Noah’s idea.”
“Of course it was.”
“I supported it, Reid. I didn’t want her to get sent back to Iraq either.”
“Let me guess,” Reid says. “Noah talked you into it and made it seem like you’d be a total jerk to have a problem with it, am I right?”
Luke shrugs. “And the two of you hadn’t even had sex yet so you were probably feeling a little insecure about the relationship.”
Luke just shrugs again. “Had he even told you he loved you yet?”
Luke smiles tightly. “He told me right before he walked into the house and proposed to Ameera.”
“Ugh!” Reid throws his hands up disgustedly. “That guy is such a jackass!”
“He says the same thing about you,” Luke smiles sweetly and bats his eyelashes up at Reid.
Reid laughs, throwing his arm around Luke’s shoulders and dragging him close. “So what happened after that?” Reid asks, dropping a kiss on top of Luke’s head resting against his neck.
“They got married at the farm. I was the best man,” Luke says, nodding his head to where the picture sits on the coffee table. “My whole family was there, keeping up appearances. Faith was a bridesmaid and I even wrote Noah’s wedding vows,” Luke says.
Reid swears under his breath and Luke ignores him. “The weird thing is, we had dinner together afterwards, to celebrate. I’ll never forget it, my grandma said grace and welcomed Ameera and Noah into the Snyder family, like it was a real marriage or something.”
“Your family is nuts,” Reid mutters darkly.
“It was like a nightmare, I don’t know what they were thinking. It’s not like there were ICE agents peering through the window or something. It just felt so real. Too real, you know? Especially since we’re gay and weren’t even allowed to get married.”
Reid remains silent, and Luke sits up, realizing how that sounded. “I was an idiot, Reid,” Luke says. “I thought I wanted to marry Noah. I thought I knew what love was,” Luke shakes his head. “But I didn’t. Not back then.”
Reid nods, and Luke leans his head against Reid’s neck again. “Noah and Ameera moved into my grandmother’s cottage, putting on a show of happily-married newlyweds for the ICE, who I had to lie to, by the way.”
Reid makes another disgusted noise but doesn’t speak. “Casey pretended to be my boyfriend to throw them off our trail,” Luke says.
Reid sits up, “You and Casey Hughes? Boyfriends? Was there any kissing or nudity involved? Like I said, spare no dirty detail.”
Luke laughs and gently bats his fist against Reid’s chest. “Shut up, perv. Anyway, long story short, Ameera started having feelings for Noah, I felt insecure, we fought a lot, then there was this whole thing with the Colonel, who escaped from prison, blah blah blah, eventually the marriage was annulled, Ameera moved to California, the Colonel died – and Noah blamed me for it – we broke up for the hundredth time and then Cyndi Lauper got us back together five minutes before Noah told me he’d joined the army.”
Reid sits in stunned silence for a moment, and then bursts into laughter.
Luke frowns at first but then joins in with Reid’s laughter, rubbing a hand over his face as they settle down.
“This town,” Reid says, shaking his head in disbelief. “Dare I even ask about Cyndi Lauper?”
Luke shrugs, squeezing the arm he has wrapped across Reid’s waist and drawing him into a sideways hug. “Come on, Reid,” Luke says. “This town’s been pretty good to you.”
Reid snorts. “Yeah, getting hit by a freaking train was a real highlight.”
Luke sobers up, squeezing Reid again and hiding his face in Reid’s neck. “I don’t like talking about that,” Luke says quietly. “Don’t joke about it.”
“I know,” Reid says, squeezing Luke’s shoulder. “Sorry.”
Luke looks up, his eyes serious as he traces his thumb across the faint scar on Reid’s forehead. “Chris died, Luke whispers.
Reid swallows hard, and nods. Reid still doesn’t remember most of what happened that day, but it’s burned into Luke’s brain. He’ll never forget the anguish he’d felt as he’d said goodbye to Reid for what he’d thought was the last time. Luke was seconds away from letting them take Reid’s heart when Chris Hughes had coded and died in the other room. Bob and Kim had been distraught, not leaving Chris’s bedside. Katie was a wreck, too. Margo comforting her as Dr. Dixon had come back to talk to Luke, still wanting to go ahead and harvest Reid’s organs before Luke had put a halt to everything.
“He has a DNR, Luke,” Dr. Dixon had said.
“Yeah, well I have his power of attorney and I’m overruling it. Reid only consented to giving his heart to Chris, nothing else,” Luke shook his head. “I’m not– I can’t let him go just yet. Please, Dr. Dixon.”
“Dr. Dixon,” one of the nurses approached. “You’ve got to see this.”
Somehow, Reid was showing signs of brain function again. Luke couldn’t understand how it was possible and Dr. Dixon had no answers for him – none of the doctors did. For a moment, Luke had been paralyzed with fear at what he’d almost allowed Bob and Dr. Dixon to talk him into. Luke had Reid placed into a medically-induced coma and flew in specialists from all over the world. Several surgeries and months of rehab later, Reid was back at work, and apart from a few scars, and a hip that sometimes ached in cold weather, it was almost like the accident had never happened.
“Hey,” Reid says, catching Luke’s eye and smiling gently. “I’m okay now, good as new.”
Luke exhales a shaky breath, and nods, leaning close to Reid to brush their mouths together. Reid sighs into the kiss, pulling back to cup Luke’s cheek. Luke places his own hand over Reid’s, their wedding rings rubbing together.
“All that stuff with Noah? It doesn’t matter anymore, it’s all in the past,” Reid says.
Luke nods. “I know. But it hurt so much at the time, Reid,” Luke says. “Everything with Noah hurt. I don’t think we ever had more than a month at a time when we were happy.”
Reid bites his lip, and nods. “You don’t have to think about that anymore,” Reid says instead, changing the subject. “Let’s finish unpacking the office, and then go to bed early.”
“Go to bed early? Are you tired, old man?” Luke teases.
“Who said anything about sleeping?” Reid waggles his eyebrows, and Luke laughs. “I’m gonna clean up this mess first,” Luke says. “Meet you in there.”
Reid nods and heads for the office and Luke scoops up their balled-up napkins, throwing them into the empty pizza box. He picks up the picture of Noah’s wedding day, studying it closely for a moment. He remembers it like it was yesterday; the way Noah had gazed lovingly at Ameera walking down the aisle, that awful family dinner. Luke remembers the tangle of emotions he’d felt during those weeks, his discomfort at the ease in which Noah had slipped into the traditional, straight role of doting new husband. It’s funny, it had hurt so much at the time, but Reid’s accident had since put things into perspective. Luke had been utterly terrified then, those tense early days waiting to see if Reid would make it, and the joy Luke felt when he had, the sense of partnership he’d experienced with Reid during his long healing process. The way the two of them had gotten through it together, as a united front, and how great things were now, all made the drama he’d gone through with Noah pale into insignificance.
Then there was his own wedding day, the complete antithesis to Noah and Ameera’s wedding. Hell, to every wedding Luke had ever been to. Luke and Reid had gone to Hawaii, escaping the harshest part of the Oakdale winter for a couple weeks before Reid was due to start back at work. It was Luke who proposed, surprising them both. They got married on the beach with only the justice of the peace as their witness. Luke glances over at the mantle where their wedding picture sits, and he grins at the memory of it; how happy they were that day, Reid looking tanned and healthy again, so handsome that Luke’s heart ached with love for him. He thinks of the sappy vows they’d both made with no one they knew there to hear them. It was for Luke and Reid alone, and it couldn’t have been more perfect. And this? What he and Reid have? This is what a marriage is supposed to be.
Luke tosses the old picture into the pizza box, closing the lid and shoving the whole thing into one of the trash bags half-filled with the remnants of unpacking that are currently littering their new house.
“Mr. Snyder!” Reid yells from the other room. “Get your fine ass in here and help me rearrange these books. Who the hell files books by height?”
Luke chuckles, tying the trash bag closed before heading off after his husband.