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Fanfiction: A Journey of Lies

Fandom: Hawaii Five-0
Summary: Rachel tells a lie when she first meets Danny.  Can she ever find her way to the truth? 
Rating: PG-13
Author's Notes: Danny/Rachel, Rachel/Stan. Spoilers for Ep.10 "Heihei." Pre-series. Some bad language and mention of adult situations. My brain got hijacked by this after thinking about what happened between Danny and Rachel after watching Ep.10.
Disclaimer: No copyright infringement intended. Written for entertainment purposes only.

A Journey of Lies

(On The Way To The Truth
)

1.

She's buried at the back of a diner, nose in The Wall Street Journal when she notices him barrel in; the uniform, blond hair, blue eyes. He's not tall enough; she's willowy and she likes high heels. But there's something in the easy way he jokes, a joie de vivre illustrated in his expansive hand gestures that has Rachel envious at the other cop, grey-haired and pot-bellied, who holds his attention.

But he doesn't spare Rachel a glance as he finishes his meal and walks back out onto the street with his pot-bellied partner, getting into the police car parked out front and driving away. It's a big city; she probably won't see him again. There's a flicker of disappointment that she ignores.

Her car's parked a couple of streets away. She slows as she approaches it, surprised to see the police car and its occupants just a bit further down the road from her, the cute one yelling at a skate-boarding kid. Rachel does the British thing of politely pretending she hasn't noticed the altercation and gets in her car before she sneaks another look in the rear view mirror.

He's done; waving the kid off with a warning. Rachel bites her lip. OK, so maybe coming across him again feels like serendipity. But what next? The idea forms as she watches him and his partner get back in their car. She hurriedly straps herself in and guns her engine. Two minutes later, she pulls out at a strategic moment and clips the rear end of his cop car. Her hand is shaking as she switches the engine off and gets out.

"You hit me!" He's already out of his car and waving both arms in the direction of his crumpled bumper and crushed tail light. "You actually hit me! You are not supposed to get into traffic accidents with cops, lady!"

"I'm so sorry, Officer," Rachel babbles out fast.

"You're English." His blue gaze focuses on her for the first time.

Rachel feels herself fall head over heels the minute his eyes hit hers, and for a moment, just a moment, completely panics. Is it supposed to happen this fast?

"You OK?" His gaze is warm and concerned.

"Yes, yes, I am." She offers a tentative smile and lies through her teeth. "I'm afraid I'm really not used to driving on this side of the road, Officer…?"

"Williams." He offers his hand. "Call me Danny."

She grasps his hand firmly and holds on. "Rachel. I'm Rachel."

"So, Rachel," Danny drawls her name like a challenge, "maybe we should see about getting you some driving lessons." He grins; it's a dare, blatant as anything.

"Maybe we should." She grins back; dare accepted.

Neither of them notice when his partner snorts in amusement.

2.

The house is small but it's theirs. Two bedrooms, one bath, a small open plan downstairs that has the kitchen and den separated only by a breakfast bar that they don't use in favour of a small cramped kitchen table that Danny's mother gave to them.

Rachel furnishes the house with love; decorates it with care. She's nesting; she doesn't deny it. She's still getting used to the ring on her finger; the narrow gold band topped with his grandmother's engagement ring. She pauses in painting the bedroom a soft blue. Her thumb rubs reverently over the metal.

They've talked about kids; they both want a family but not yet. They're barely married; Danny wants to make detective before they start trying. Rachel thinks of her own career and the marketing job that brought her to the States in the first place. She earns more than Danny and she thinks it bothers him despite his evident pride in her achievements, in her.

She can hear Danny arguing with his brother on the phone as he enters the house. Rachel smiles a little in befuddlement. The Williams family is still something of a shock, gregarious and fierce; liable to yell at each other one minute and be a very scary united front the next. They've welcomed her but she's navigating her way between the various family eddies; of the history between brothers and sisters, parents and children; between the looks of mistrust they aim at her because of how fast this thing has happened with her and Danny, and the looks of joy they aim at Danny because of the happiness he shows in every gesture, every grin.

Her own mother has been a different story. Her month long visit for the wedding had been fraught with the blatant disapproval of Rachel's choice of a Jersey cop who has more principles than money. Rachel doesn't blame Danny for pushing her mother into a Holiday Inn after two days. She'd been more embarrassed by her mother than annoyed at him. She hears his feet on the stairs and turns to greet him only to freeze at the sight of the blood on his face.

"Oh my God, what happened?" Rachel drops the paint brush and rushes over, her hands grasping and tilting his face with its rough jaw of stubble to take a better look at the raw graze with its mottled bruising along his right cheekbone.

"It's nothing," Danny shrugs, his hands are already on her hips, thumbs brushing through her clothes to her belly in a comforting arch that has her body reminded of the night before. "I was chasing after a guy and hit the pavement badly when I took him down."

She shivers because he's so matter of fact about the danger he was in; the injury he's sustained. And it's nothing; a bad scrape, probably a few bruises under the uniform he wears, not a bullet wound or the jagged scar of a knife slash. She signed on for this; she's a cop's wife, Rachel reminds herself. She can do this. But the first visible wound that shows her the truth of his profession cracks something inside of her, a fear budding where there was none before.

"Hey." Danny's hand comes up and catches her chin, holds her steady as he looks at her. "You know I'm careful out there, right?" He kisses her softly. "I've got you to come home to."

Rachel pins on a smile. "I'm fine." And kisses him before he can see she's lying.

3.

All the books had warned her against distancing herself from her husband in the aftermath of childbirth, in the rush of a new baby to love and take care of. 'Don't make him feel that he's second best.' They'd screamed. They hadn't warned her that she might be the one feeling that way.

Rachel crosses her arms, slumps against the door jamb of the nursery (spare room) and watches Danny with their month old daughter. He's sitting in the rocking chair he insisted they needed, illuminated only with the small night light on the dresser. His blond hair is clipped short, the scruff from his beard decorating his usual pristine jaw line. His shirt is rumpled, the dark grey tie askew at his collar. He's already discarded his jacket which lies abandoned on the sofa bed at the back wall; there's a glint of metal from the badge attached to his belt.

He hasn't noticed Rachel in the doorway; only has eyes for the bundle in his arms. He's gazing at Grace as though she's his whole world, a tiny fist curled around his little finger.

Jealousy spikes through Rachel unexpectedly. When was the last time Danny had looked at her that way? Maybe when she'd told him that she was pregnant. And before that? Their anniversary? No, they'd had that fight about his being late because of some arrest and the make-up sex had been angry rather than loving.

Marriages are hard work. It's a truism but a good one and one that Rachel has learned personally in the few years she's been with Danny. There's more compromise involved than anyone would willing endure if they knew about the need for it ahead of time.

Danny's better at it than she is. Rachel knows this, and most days she is insanely grateful for it. He lets her get her own way with the house; the times they spend with his family because there is only so much of the Williams family she can handle; the annual visits from her own mother. He wears the cologne she bought him; the suits and ties that she chooses. Danny's only ever had one no-go area of compromise: his job.

Rachel grimaces. He's made detective and she's proud of him, she is. But he's working longer hours; tougher cases. She can't help the fear that eats away at her each day that one day he might not come home. She loves him so much she's not sure how she'll ever cope with losing him.

And there's not just her anymore; there's Grace. Her daughter. The tiny being who is completely dependent on her; who Rachel knows to her marrow that she will do anything to protect. Danny loves them; he loves Grace…but Danny risks his life every day and Rachel's wondering if there's enough security for her child, for her. She sighs, soft in the darkness.

His head snaps up and his eyes find her immediately. "Hey. Sorry I'm late." He's wary, expecting her to snap at him about it like she's done every night lately.

She shrugs and lies because she doesn't have it in her to fight when he's holding their daughter and she's still reeling back from the nudge of jealousy, the rush of insecurity. "It's OK."

Danny adjusts his grip and holds out a hand. She walks across the room and takes it. She lets him pull her into a one-armed hug by his side, slides her own arm around his shoulders. "We did good, Rach." His gaze is back on Grace and Rachel can't argue with that.

4.

She's in the middle of a bath when she gets the call she's always been dreading. She answers the phone wet with bubbles sliding over her skin and one hand clutching the towel to her body.

Danny. Shot. Hospital.

Rachel's barely aware of calling Danny's mother to come and watch Grace, of getting dressed throwing clothes over her wet skin, because her heart is pounding too loudly in her ears for her to be aware of anything else. Minutes later, too many minutes, Danny's mother arrives with Danny's oldest sister, white-faced and worried. Both of them usher her out of the door with comforting platitudes and the promise to call them. Rachel kisses her daughter, gathers her purse and runs for the door.

Let him be alive. Anything. Just let him be alive.

The litany plays in her head all the way to the hospital and she counts it as a miracle she makes it without having an accident. She runs into the ER and immediately spots his Captain. Ellis is a bald-headed, tough bastard who made his way through the ranks. He likes Danny; he hates Rachel who clearly doesn't fit his picture of a supportive cop's wife. To be fair, she hates him right back – he's the one sending Danny into danger.

"Rachel…"

"Where is he?" Rachel demands, eyes flashing with fury. "Where's my husband?"

"They're treating him now," Ellis has his hands up, warding her off, telling her to calm down without words spoken, "it was a through and through. He's going to be OK."

It's enough to pierce through the fog of panic and she lets out a breath like it's the first one she's taken since she'd got the news.

"Aiden didn't make it." Ellis continues.

Aiden. Danny's partner. The young cheerful rookie who Danny teases constantly. Teased. Past tense. Aiden didn't make it.

"God." Rachel utters, shattered because all she feels is relieved to the bone that it's Aiden who's dead and not Danny. Not her Danny. She lowers her face into her hands so Ellis doesn't see.

"Mrs Williams?" A nurse calls out to her from the double doors that bar the way into the inner sanctum of the ER. Rachel hurries after her and rushes into the private room.

Danny slides off the bed; his shirt is off, a white bandage wrapped around his upper arm. She's in his arms before she can think. He's holding onto her tightly. His face is wet; pressed into her neck. One hand buries itself in her dark hair.

"Aiden." He says brokenly. "Did they tell you…?"

"They told me." Rachel says.

It could have been him; could so easily been him. Fear churns her belly. She can't do this, can't do this again; never wants her daughter to live with this fear. But it isn't the time to tell him.

She hugs him. "Everything's going to be OK, Daniel."

5.

"I'm a cop!" Daniel snarls at her, his temper is up. "You knew this! You can't even claim not to have known this because the car you rear-ended, Rachel, what was it again, oh yes: it was a cop car!" His hands punctuate his words; one hand slamming into the other with every word.

Rachel's not afraid of him despite the anger he's brimming with; Daniel would rather rip off his arm than hurt her or Grace.

"We've had this argument like a million times already," Daniel continues passionately, "why can't you let this go?"

"Because I don't want Grace to lose her father!" Rachel gives as good as she gets. She folds her arms over her blouse and glares at him. "Can't you see how selfish you're being?"

"How selfish I'm being?" Daniel looks at her with wide unbelieving eyes, his skin flushed red. He stabs a finger at her. "How selfish I'm being? Really? Because I want my daughter to have a father who likes his job, is good at his job and, oh, hey; here's a thought; has a fucking job! Not to mention that my job makes this place, this city, safer for Gracie!"

"And when you end up dead like Aiden? Or Harry? Or Lisa? What's she supposed to think then, Daniel?" Rachel taunts him with the colleagues he's lost before she can stop the words from tumbling out.

Daniel turns white. He spins on his heel, throws up an arm and leaves the house. The door slams behind him. She knows he's going to the nearest bar where he'll drink too much. He'll call a cab or his brother and he'll arrive back pissed as a newt. He'll sleep on the couch but he'll be awake and have removed all evidence of it by the time Gracie gets up. It's happened enough in the last few months that it's become a routine. They've been tearing each other apart for the past year since Rachel asked Daniel to leave the force.

Rachel rubs the back of her neck and heads up the stairs. She opens the door to Grace's room and stands just outside watching her daughter sleep. They don't argue in front of her but Grace is quiet, too quiet. Their daughter knows something isn't right.

She's surprised by the sound of the front door opening again; Daniel's footfall on the stairs. He stops just behind her; leans against the wall and crosses his arms over chest, his cotton shirt pulling taut against the muscles he hides. She turns back to her Grace watching.

"We can't keep doing this, Rachel." Daniel says, behind her. He sounds tired, worn.

Rachel reaches forward and pulls the door shut. She turns around. "I think we should separate, get some space from each other; get counselling." It's the next logical step.

His face twists but he nods if reluctantly. "A temporary separation though just while we work this out."

"A temporary separation." Rachel lies. She knows deep down Daniel won't ever agree to leave the force and she can't be married to him anymore. She can't live with the fear and insecurity of being a cop's wife; won't have her daughter face the same. She watches him pack and knows it's over.

6.

The divorce is brutal.

Rachel has never thought it was going to be easy untangling her life from Daniel's especially when there's Grace, but she isn't prepared for just how much Daniel is prepared to fight. She wonders in hindsight how stupidly naïve she'd been to assume that because Daniel wouldn't leave his job for Grace (for Rachel) that Daniel wouldn't fight for Grace (for Rachel). So the part of her who had hoped to cut him out of her life cleanly; to have had him disappear from hers and Grace's existence, like her own absent father had done, has been frustrated. Instead, she finds herself indebted to the American courts that favour the mother over the father; white over blue collar. She has custody; Daniel has weekly visitation rights. She's British enough to be pissed at being beholden to American justice.

But it's not enough because Daniel is still right there. He calls to talk with Grace every day and she can't deny him because the one time Rachel refused to let him speak with Grace, her daughter cried herself to sleep and told Rachel she hated her. Rachel sees him every time he comes to pick up Grace; vibrant and alive and so Daniel that sometimes her heart aches with it. She's never stopped loving him. She just can't live with him.

He'd stopped actively trying to save their marriage after she sued for full custody. And she can remember that conversation, the pain and betrayal in his face across the conference table with their lawyers either side of them; his softly spoken "Why are you doing this, Rach?"

Rachel pushes the thought of him away and focuses on getting ready for her date. The warm maroon silk dress looks good on her. Her make-up is discreet. Her jewellery is delicate. The perfume she spritzes is floral and light. She smoothes a hand down the fabric and takes a deep breath. She looks sexy; hot; beautiful. She refuses to think about why that she's ready for her date with Stanley Edwards two hours early. She's been seeing him for a while since the divorce was finalised. He's steady, safe and patient. Everything Daniel isn't.

Her cell buzzes and it's Daniel. She sighs and gears up to lambast him for not being on time to pick up Grace. "Daniel."

"This is Connor."

Rachel freezes. Daniel's new partner. Nausea rises swiftly. "What's wrong? Is Danny OK?"

"He's in the hospital; minor injury." Connor says with clipped tones that tell her she's not his favourite person. "He wanted me to call and tell you he'll be late picking Grace up but he'll be there."

Rachel ends the call and sits heavily on her bed. She thought it was over; the worrying, the concern. It's not. She's his ex-wife but the fear is just as bad as it ever was.

Daniel turns up with a small bandage over his right eye. He takes in her outfit with a smirk. "Wow, Rach, you didn't have to get dressed up for me." He drawls.

"I didn't." Rachel snaps out. "My date will be here any minute." It's only when Daniel's gone and Rachel waits another hour for Stanley that she acknowledges to herself who her outfit was for.

7.

Daniel doesn't get an invite to Rachel's wedding to Stan.

It's a small affair anyway; a handful of guests, Grace as a pretty flower girl and Stan's family. Rachel's mother disapproves of Rachel leaving Daniel (even though as far as Rachel knows her mother never actually changed her mind about Daniel at all), of Rachel marrying again so quickly, and hasn't flown over from Manchester despite Stan's offer to pay.

Rachel watches Grace charm Stan's elegant and stunningly beautiful sister and can't help comparing her weddings. The rambunctiousness of the one she'd had with Daniel; the cops providing a guard of honour from the church, the carousing at the reception, the way Daniel had spun her laughing and happy around the dance floor, stealing kisses at every turn. There had been truly horrendous disco music. They'd sneaked out, she and Daniel, at that point; tumbled into the room the Williams had arranged at the Holiday Inn and made love.

She shakes herself free of the memory and into the present where she's dancing sedately to classical violin music in an opulent private suite in Stan's very expensive hotel; champagne bubbling in her glass; everyone polite and restrained.

Safe. It's what she wants. What she wants for Grace. Stan will never risk his life; will never leave them. Security. She and Grace will never want again.

Her eyes fly to the time. Daniel will be at the hotel soon to pick up Grace. Rachel's acquiesced to him having her for the two weeks that she'll be on honeymoon with Stan. Almost as soon as she's thought it, the concierge calls; Daniel's in the lobby.

Rachel walks down with Grace holding her hand, Stan carrying the two bags Rachel's packed for her; one of clothes, one of toys. Grace pulls away as soon as she sees Daniel, her delighted shriek echoing in the staid lobby.

"Danno!" Grace beams at him as Daniel gets to his knees and hugs her. He talks quietly to her until Rachel and Stan approach.

Stan hands him the bags. "Daniel."

"Stanley." Daniel loops the strap of one bag over one shoulder, picks up the second and holds his free hand out to Grace. "Rachel. Congratulations." His eyes travel over her expensive pale blue dress and back to her eyes. There's a curious resignation in his gaze. "You look beautiful."

It's the nicest thing he's said to her since the divorce. "Thank you, Danny." Rachel stutters out. She says goodbye to Grace and watches with a too-tight feeling in her chest as they walk away. It's really over. She's suddenly aware of Stan watching her with equal intensity. "What?"

"You still love him, don't you?" Stan murmurs. "I mean, I know you love me, and it's OK if you do have feelings, you were married a long time and…"

Rachel stops him with a finger to his lips. "I don't love him anymore."

Stan simply takes hold of her hand kisses the expensive rings she wears now.

8.

Three months into her new marriage, Stan proposes moving to Hawaii. Rachel's not stupid. She's seen how Stan tenses up every time Daniel comes to pick up Grace. Daniel doesn't help matters much because while he's unfailingly polite to Stan, there's always a hint of smirk about his lips that says 'enjoy it while you can because they're mine.'

Or maybe that's just Rachel's imagination. Or her conscience.

Either way, Rachel is totally on board with moving to Hawaii. Daniel has become an Issue in her new marriage; the elephant in the room that she and Stan never speak about. She knows no matter how many times she tells Stan that she doesn't love Daniel, Stan won't believe it. She catches herself thinking sometimes that her mother had a point about marrying too soon. And to add insult to injury, Rachel still worries about her ex-husband; panics when the phone rings and she's in the bath. What she needs – what they need – is a Daniel free zone; somewhere to establish their marriage without Daniel's constant presence.

Needless to say the plan to move to Hawaii doesn't go down well with Daniel. If the divorce was a bloody skirmish, this is all-out war. When pleading phone calls and visits don't work, he takes them to court to stop them going.

Rachel's got the advantage of Stan, his money and the legion of lawyers that Stan's money buys. Money always wins in the end. Daniel is defeated. He's lost his weekly custody visits and he's down to four weeks of visitation; two weeks in the Summer and two weeks at Thanksgiving. He stands slumped and bedraggled by his lawyer as Rachel sweeps out victoriously.

Daniel's mother follows Rachel out into the corridor and into the ladies' bathroom like the mother tigress she is. "You really think this is best for Grace?"

"If Daniel had been reasonable…" Rachel begins defensively, returning her lipstick to the buttery leather clutch bag she carries.

"Reasonable?" Daniel's mother takes a step toward her. "You're taking his daughter away from him, Rachel. The daughter he loves more than anything." She shakes her head. "If he tried to take Gracie away from you, how reasonable would you be?"

"He was the one who dragged us to court about Hawaii when we could have worked out an arrangement." Rachel reminds her briskly. "Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm fairly certain my lawyer wouldn't approve of this conversation."

Daniel's mother looks at her with surprising compassion. "You're running away, Rachel, and when you realise that you're going to regret leaving Danny behind and God help you when Gracie's old enough to understand what you've done to keep him away from her." She leaves before Rachel can reply.

It's for the best, Rachel tries to tell herself as she takes a moment to collect herself. Grace doesn't need a father who'll only end up gunned down in the line of duty. Grace needs security and stability. Grace will have Stan. Rachel will have Stan. Daniel will finally be out of the picture.

9.

They get one month alone save for daily phone calls that Rachel manages to avoid by virtue of having staff answer the phone. Daniel never asks to talk with Rachel; she doesn't speak to him. Stan seems happy.

Then, Daniel moves to Hawaii.

Apparently, he can compromise on everything but his job and his little girl. Rachel pretends that she didn't hope, just a little, that he'd follow them because if he hadn't it might have meant that he didn't love Grace (them) as much as he did. Stan's annoyed.

Daniel's back to being an Issue in her second marriage, not least because the first thing he does after arriving is take them back to court to contest the custody arrangement. He's in the State; he wants his weekly visitation rights back.

The Hawaiian judge is more sympathetic. Daniel moved across a vast distance, left behind his life to get access to his daughter. The proof of devotion goes down well with the homely looking grandmother who presides over the case. Stan's lawyers try every trick in the book including defaming Daniel's character (temper tantrums elevated to verbal abuse for one, the nightly drinking at bars during the breakdown of their marriage a suggestion of alcoholism for another) but in the end Daniel gets twice weekly visits; forty-eight hours in total.

When she sees Daniel for the first time outside of the court room – when he comes to pick up an overjoyed Grace for the first time since he arrived in Hawaii – Rachel suddenly realises that Daniel hates her. He barely looks at her and when he does, his blue eyes simmer with dislike, suspicion and wariness. He no longer trusts her.

It hurts her more than she wants to admit. She responds with a cold bitchiness she didn't realise she was capable of. But then she has always been ice to Daniel's fire. She starts to send Grace out with the maid when he picks her up. She and Daniel descend into biting sarcasm when they have to speak concerning the visitations. She spends more time thinking and talking about Daniel than is healthy for her marriage. Things grow tense between Stan and her.

Then Daniel gets appointed to a new task force and her little girl gets caught up in the middle of a shooting. Rachel is horrified. It's one thing for Daniel to risk his life but Grace's? She yells at him on the phone, blames him without question. When Grace arrives and tells her that Daniel left her with a complete stranger at the football game while he went to catch the bad men, Rachel's on the phone to the lawyers immediately because they can use this to get Daniel out of their lives.

One minute everything is ramping up to take Daniel to court and the next they're learning that Daniel has new friends in high places that could make life difficult for Stan's business. But it's not the threat of losing the advantage that stays Rachel's hand but rather Daniel's impassioned plea through the intercom.

OK, maybe Rachel let her emotions get the better of her for a long moment in threatening his visitations.

She lets everyone believe it was the Governor's interference; it's easier that way.

10.

Rachel watches as Daniel drives away from the house. The bad guys are caught; the good guys won; her car is a wreck.

Stan isn't going to be pleased but Rachel will deal with that when Stan gets home. It's not like she didn't get the request for the surveillance directly from the leader of the 5-0 task force after all, not just Daniel.

McGarrett's very solidly in Daniel's corner, not that it was a surprise after the Governor's intervention, but how solidly is still a surprise to Rachel. It's not like Ellis with his disapproving looks or Connor's snide comments. McGarrett was actually cordial if obvious in his remarks. There's a part of her that's glad for Daniel that he has someone in Hawaii who'll stand up for him.

Of course she did a fair job of standing up for Daniel herself. She had provided the distraction that had allowed him to get out of the neighbouring house safely. She's insanely pleased with herself for the plan and the execution.

She smiles as she remembers Daniel's expression when she handed him the pen; when she had informed him that she knew the trick worked because it had worked on him. His face had been a picture as he'd finally realised the truth about their first meeting.

Her fingers drift to her lips. She has to stop smiling.

But Rachel feels lighter than she has done in years.

Maybe it's because she's had her worst fear come to life right in front of her and faced it; she's actually seen Daniel in danger. But she's also seen him get out of it, not just the aftermath with its bruises and scars. Maybe it's also because she knows that McGarrett would clearly burn down a house to keep Daniel alive just as she will drive a car into a wall for the same reason. Maybe it's because Daniel looked at her with something approaching affection again, without the accusing animosity that's been there since she started trying to cut him out of Grace's life.

Whatever the reason, she's bubbly; giggly; like she's falling in love all over again.

And that's…that's just not happening. It can't happen. She's married to Stan, Rachel reminds herself. She loves Stan; she does. He's everything she's wanted. Safe, secure and steady. OK, they're having some problems but marriages take work and compromise. And they're going to have to compromise about Daniel because Rachel knows that while she and Daniel have a long way to go before they're friends again, before they're friendly, they have declared a truce.

Rachel watches until the car disappears and goes in search of Grace. She thinks back to their first encounter, to the trick she'd played to meet him. It feels good to have told him the truth. It feels like they've wiped the slate clean; like a new beginning. She's going to stop pushing Daniel away; he will be a part of their lives. It's the right decision; for her, for Grace. For the first time in a long while a surge of fear about Daniel's job doesn't accompany the thought. Instead, warmth wraps around Rachel like a security blanket.

And, as Grace hugs her, Rachel wonders why she's been so scared of the truth for so long.

fin.

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