He's at it again. We have only just arrived and already he is flirting with anything in a skirt. He doesn't know just how much it hurts me to see him like this. You would think that I'd be used to it by now, but it hurts worse each time. He is my best friend, and knows me better than anyone else, but he has never noticed this. I love him, and have done for a long time. His friendship is the only thing that has held me back from total insanity. There are times when my mind is completely lucid, like now, but often my mind clouds and other personalities take over. They never affect my ability to function as part of the team, but they aren't *me*. Face makes *me* stronger. It is because of him that I have the strength to fight the others off for a while. He is able to reach past the others, and always sees *me*. He always knows when I am only *acting* insane, but he doesn't let on to the others. He is the only person who truly accepts me for who I am. Add to that the fact that he is so sexy... so incredibly gorgeous... how could I not love him.
I watch him as he works his way round the room. I long ago mastered the art of watching him without appearing to even be paying any attention. I always know where he is, and in the past it has actually saved his life. But now I am enjoying the way he moves. He is so graceful... so sure of himself... at least he always *appears* to be. I know differently. Inside he is scared and unsure. He never had parents to love him, even though Monsignor Magill and Father O'Malley did the best they could, and that started his insecurities. Then there was Nam. No one should ever have to go through something like that, especially someone as vulnerable as Face. No one, except other veterans, could ever understand the horror of what we saw. *Nobody* came back unscarred. Everyone has a different way of coping. Some can't cope at all and so the suicide rate among veterans is high. My way is insanity... Hannibal's is "the jazz" he gets on missions... BA's is to help children and to work on his Van... and Face's is to pretend to be someone else. It doesn't stop the nightmares, but for a while you can pretend they don't exist... that you didn't see what you did. Face is so convincing in whatever role he chooses that he even manages to fool himself for a while. Even so, I can see the loneliness that lies beneath the fašade. I want to be able to hold him and take it all away, but I know he won't let me. He only ever looks at females, so I keep hiding my feelings from him. However much I hope and dream that he loves me back the way I want, I know it isn't possible. Even so I will always be there for him.
My heart constricts further as I see him walking toward me with a busty blonde on his arm. It is obvious that he has found his distraction for the night. That is all she will be, as he never allows them to breach the walls around him. I am lucky in that respect. I'm allowed to see the *real* Templeton Peck that hides behind the many walls, and I love the fact that he trusts me enough to do so. It is this that allows a tiny spark of hope to keep burning in my heart even though my head knows it's hopeless.
I watch him leave and the familiar pain washes over me. I long to be the one who leaves with him. To be able to spend all night holding him and making love to him. To be able to love him and have him return that love. Until then, I will continue to be his friend. To be the one who is there for him all of the time. To just be there until maybe he notices that I am there as more than a friend and that with me he could have *everything* and *never* be lonely again.The End