Title: Private Emotion
Rating: PG 13.
Genre: Slash. (Not explicit.)
Spoilers: Sequel to By Your Side.
Teaser: Ray and Fraser are leaving Chicago.
Disclaimer: As much as I want them, they don't belong to me.
Feedback: Yes, please.
Notes: This version of the song Private Emotion belongs to Ricky Martin, I played around with the verses snipping choruses and bridges here and there but the verses I used are in tact. Thanks again to Beth for the beta, you're the best sweetie!!!
Ray taped the last box closed and pulled the spare bedroom door closed behind him. He moved around his apartment pulling books and knick-nacks into another box marking it Ray and carrying it to the door.
Ben watched silently from the kitchen. He played with the band of his Stetson leaning in the doorway to Ray's kitchen. Ben tried sorting through the jumble of emotions he was feeling while Ray finished packing things away. Part of him was ecstatic that Ray was coming home with him. He longed to share the beauty of his home with the man he loved so incredibly deeply but he also felt a twinge of sadness that Ray was leaving his home, making a great sacrifice.
They had many heated arguments. Well actually Ray was the only one heated since Ben sat rather passively while Ray paced desperately trying to pound the idea into the Mountie that he was happy to go with Fraser wherever the four winds would blow.
A knock on the door startled Ben from his thoughts and he crossed the room to answer the door. Pulling it open he found Francesca Vecchio smiling shyly.
"Francesca, please come in." Ben smiled nervously and stepped aside to let her in.
"Thanks, Frase." She walked in and surveyed the room shyly and stood quietly off to the side. She clasped and unclasped her hands nervously.
Ray came out from the back. She smiled slightly when she saw him and he matched her smile. "Hey bro!"
"Hi, Frannie. Well it's all yours. I put a buncha my stuff in the spare room, if you need the room just put it in storage and send the bills up ta Inuvik."
"It's fine, Ray. I'm just taking care of the place for ya and Frase." Ray and Ben looked at her quickly vague looks of panic flitted across their faces. "Oh don't give me that. I'm not stupid."
Frannie smiled and laughed, "I mean come on, I'm a gorgeous girl and my two best friends are THE hottest guys to walk the face of the earth and neither of them give me a second look."
Ray and Fraser looked away from her and randomly focused on things in the room blushing. She went to them taking each of their hands. "I love you guys more than anything. Working with you I always felt like I was doing something good, part of a team you know?"
Frannie teared up and sniffed. "I hate that you are leaving but I know you guys will be happier in Inuvik. Maybe I could come see you guys? It's gonna be really lonely with Ray off playing big mob guy and you two off in winter wonderland."
Frannie stepped back and sat on the sofa burying her head in her hands sobbing. "I feel like I keep losing my brothers."
"Frannie," Ray sat next to her and gathered her in his arms. "You aren't losing us. Frase and I are gonna miss you like crazy."
Frannie scoffed and Ben sat on the other side of her. "Yes, Francesca we will miss you terribly even Diefenbaker I'm sure will miss you. He's always been fond of you and very protective of you."
Ben awkwardly put a hand on her shoulder while Ray held her. Dief barked and put his paw on Frannie's knee.
"Are you sure?" Ben looked seriously at his wolf. "Alright I know you understand the concept of free will. I will miss your companionship my friend but I understand."
"What?" Ray asked as Frannie wiped her nose.
"Diefenbaker has chosen to stay with Francesca." Ben smiled wistfully and stroked his furry companion's head lovingly. Frannie smiled and scratched Dief's chest.
"You shouldn't stay with me in the city, you're a wolf you need the..." Dief whined and shook his head. "Ok, if you're sure."
"Once we get settled in you should come visit us, Francesca. Perhaps you could join us for Christmas and New Year's?" Ben stood signaling to Ray that it was time to go.
Frannie stood took a deep breath and squared her shoulders. She wiped her tears and smiled brightly. "I think that is a great idea. Be careful and write when you can ok? I'm gonna worry whether you like it or not!"
"Yes, Ma!" Ray smiled. He hugged her tightly and gave her a tender kiss. "Thanks for everything, Frannie. You're the best."
Frannie started to cry all over again and tried to shove them out the door. Fraser stopped and opened his mouth to speak but couldn't find the words. Frannie put her hand on his arm and smiled with fresh tears.
Ray grabbed his bags and quickly stepped outside and closed the door to give them some privacy. He knew this must be hell on Frannie but he knew she was a strong woman and she would be ok.
"Take care of each other." Frannie picked up Fraser's pack and handed it to him. "I will always love you Benton, you are a hard man to get over. Thank you for being my friend despite me and my stupid fantasies."
"Francesca...." She felt the 'you'll meet someone else' speech coming so she interrupted him.
"Have a safe trip home. Check in once in awhile so Ma and I don't die from worry." Frannie opened the door and began walking down the hall with Ray and Fraser.
"Francesca, it's physically impossible…." Ben shut up quickly as Dief gave him a scathing howl.
Down at the GTO Frannie hugged Ray one last time. Fraser stepped up to hug her but she ducked away. She grabbed his hand and squeezed it quickly and then ran back into the building with Dief on her heels. She didn't want them to see her cry, cry for Fraser. Fraser tucked his chin down frowning and playing with his Stetson.
"She'll be ok, give her some time." Ray slung an arm across his shoulder.
Ben slept as Ray drove on through the night. Just outside of Buffalo Ray turned the radio back on and searched for a local pop station. He looked over at Ben to make sure it wasn't disturbing his sleep, satisfied he left the station on.
"Good evening night owls! Hope you're enjoying the midnight shift here with me we've got a hot duet with Latin sensation Ricky Martin and Meja up next." The smooth female voice announced with a soft sexy lilt in her voice.
"Every endless night has a dawning day, every darkest sky has a shining ray, and it shines on you baby can't you see, you're the only one who can shine for me."
Ray smiled to himself. Nothing was dark anymore now that he and Fraser were sharing and building a life together.
"It's a private emotion that fills you tonight and a silence falls between us as the shadows steal the light and wherever you may find it, wherever it may lead, let your private emotion come to me."
Ray smiled again and stifled a chuckle. He drew his mind back to the first time Frase had kissed him. The weekly buzz on the evening news had been the meteor shower happening over a late summer weekend. Both Ray and Fraser had lucked out and weren't scheduled to work.
As a surprise for Fraser, Ray arranged to have a picnic on the roof to watch the show. As he prepared the food waiting for Fraser to arrive he wondered why he was making a picnic. He never did this with Stella, well not after they were married anyway. 'It's just something nice for Ben.' He told himself. Then he began wondering why he was referring to him as Ben as well.
After eating dinner they stretched out on the roof to watch the shower. Just after ten one tiny little twinkle glittered across the sky in a huge sweeping arc. Soon they began popping up in pairs and even trios it almost looked like fireworks. Ray was genuinely impressed with nature's grand display he had never really paid attention to anything like this before. Soon he was bombarding Ben with question after question like a small child.
Ray realized that Ben wasn't talking to him or responding to him. Ray looked over thinking that maybe he had fallen asleep. He found Ben staring at him strangely, almost like he had never seen Ray before, somewhere between epiphany and confusion. Suddenly Ray's chest felt heavy. It was so simple; he blinked and everything fell into place. He put his hand out and linked his fingers with Ben's and there was no looking back.
Ray's thoughts were brought back to the present as he checked his mirrors and passed the semi truck in front of him.
"When your soul is tired and you heart is weak, do you think of love as a one way street? Well it runs both ways, open up your eyes, can't you see me here, how can you deny."
Ray looked over to Ben and smiled. No more games, no more unrequited affection, no second guessing and insecurity just strength, passion and love. He softly placed his hand on Ben's leg and gently caressed the muscular thigh. Saying I love you without waking him.
"It takes a lot to laugh as the tears go by, but you can find me here till your tears run dry."
Ray felt Ben's warm hand cover his and thread their fingers together. They both smiled and sighed contentedly looking ahead to the future.