Title: Broken Wings
Word count: 1.140
Author notes: Spoilers for S7 finale. Thanks to tanaqui for betaing. Second in the ...Made You King-series.
Summary: Jarry gains a new understanding of Chibs.
The call comes in shortly after midnight, right when Jarry has run out of reports to read and forms to sign and is thinking about heading home at last.
Disturbance at Diller Canyon Lookout Point.
"I'll take that," she tells the dispatcher, glad for the distraction. He gives her an odd look, the unspoken "Lieutenant?" clear in the set of his brows. "It's on my way home," she explains, adding a smile for his benefit, and quips, "Probably kids having a lovers' spat, huh?" It's a public secret the local teenagers go to Diller Point to make out, and it is Friday. "I can handle it."
"Ma'am." The dispatcher nods reluctantly.
Jarry grabs her bag and walks out to her squad car. It's a beautiful night, neither too hot nor too cold, with a nearly full moon in the cloudless sky. A fine night to be out.
Truth is, she admits to herself as she slides in behind the wheel, she's bored. The quiet of the past week should be a relief, a blessed moment of peace following on the heels of Teller's accident—suicide, she amends, even if she can't prove it. But his final promise to Patterson is holding true.
Or, at least: nobody's died this week.
She sets the car in motion and steers toward Diller Point. Amazing how one can get used to the adrenaline rush of every other call being to another bloody shoot-out, another brutal murder, another pile of bodies to bury. She kinda misses it.
Hell, if she wanted a cushy position, home for dinner and weekends off, she'd not have said yes in the first place to becoming Charming's sheriff after Roosevelt's demise. But she loves the job too much to long for quiet, loves playing the dangerous cat-and-mouse game of cops and robbers where she has to use every skill and tool at her disposal to get things done.
It's not long before she's hitting the blinker and steering the heavy car up the side road toward the lookout point. As she rolls into the parking lot, she doesn't find the scene she's expecting. There are no kids and no cars. Instead, her headlights briefly wash over the gleaming paint and chrome of a Harley motorcycle. She recognizes the design on the tank and sighs.
As she gets out, she finally sees him, alone in the shadows at the fence, his back to her. The reaper stands out starkly against the black leather, even in this light.
"Hey Scotty," she calls as she approaches. He whirls at the sound of her voice, and the next moment a bullet bites into the dirt by her boots. A small cloud of dust puffs up. "Jezus." She freezes where she stands. "Have you lost your mind?"
Looking back up, she sees he's staring at her as if puzzled. He's drunk: she can tell from his glazed look and way he's swaying slightly on his feet—as if the bottle of scotch in his left hand isn't clue enough. She doesn't know if it's luck or purpose that bullet didn't hit her.
"Whatcha doin' 'ere?" he slurs, the words even harder to make out than usual.
"Got a call," she answers, taking a pace forward. "You been scaring the natives?"
He laughs without humor and doesn't reply.
She dips her head at the gun now dangling from his right hand. "Mind putting that away? Or were you planning on shooting me after all?"
"Huh?" For a second, Chibs looks confused. "No." He tucks the gun inside his cut. "Sorry." The apology sounds like a unwilling afterthought, but she'll take what she can get.
"What are you doing here?" She takes another few steps, until she's standing next to him at the rail. He turns to gaze out again without replying. "Where's your posse? I thought Friday night was party night for the MC."
He huffs and gives her a hard look, its effect undermined by the glassiness of his eyes. Then she gets it.
Jax's funeral was today. It hadn't been the grand send-off for the mother charter's president she'd been expecting: Samcro, the Teller kids, a few others she's seen around the club. Suicide or not, she knows she's still missing a piece of the puzzle. Not that it matters any more.
"Yeh," Chibs confirms, sounding as choked as he did when she went to the porn warehouse to give them the bad news.
"I'm sorry," she says, surprised to find she means it.
Chibs sniffs—sniffles, she realizes. Shit, is he crying?
"Still haven't told me what you're doing here, waving guns and shooting at people," she reminds him, in an attempt to distract him.
He sighs and turns her way. She was right: moisture glistens on his cheeks, catching in his scars.
"Tig, Hap, the rest of them—." He draws in a shaky breath. "They got each other. Me?" He barks another harsh laugh, part sob, and slaps a palm over his right chest. "I got this. I never—." Again, he breaks off and, this time, he doesn't continue.
He doesn't need to; she understands. He's alone. The one in charge. The one who's supposed to tell the others what to do. Who's never supposed to show any doubt or weakness.
"It's lonely bein' king, ain't it?" she asks quietly, without judgement.
In response, Chibs hunches his shoulders to his ears and raises the bottle for a final gulp. Finding it empty, he tosses it over the rail to clatter down the cliff side. She decides not to comment.
"Come on." She cautiously places a hand on his arm, unsure how the gesture will be received. She once trusted this man enough to let him fuck her on top of her squad car in full view of his buddy to make a point. But now? This must be how zookeepers dealing with wild animals feel: never knowing when they'll get bit.
Turns out she needn't have worried. His shoulders drop at her touch and he leans ever so slightly toward her.
"Let's get you home," she suggests softly. "You shouldn't be alone out here."
To her surprise, he allows her to escort him to her car, without protest, stumbling over his own feet along the way. Whether he knows he's too drunk to ride or doesn't care any more, she can't tell.
Pulling out of the parking lot, she turns right, in the direction of her house. Every instinct is screaming it's wrong, that she should go left, back to the station to dump him in the drunk tank to sleep it off.
She can't. Like him, she's alone. And lonely.
When she wakes, hours later, there's no sign of him. All he's left is a faint lingering scent of tobacco and leather on the sheets. Jarry sighs and stretches. What is she doing?
Disclaimer: this story is a transformative work based on the Fox 21/FX Productions/Linson Entertainment/Sutter Ink television series Sons of Anarchy. It was written for entertainment only; the author does not profit from it. Please do not redistribute elsewhere without author attribution.