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This Ain't Goodbye {2/5}
addison {falling slowly}
sloanlovesred
Fandom: GA x PP
Rating: PG-13 (vary by chapter)
Pairings: Addison/Jake, Addison/Mark, Mark/Julia
Summary: She was the first woman he ever loved, and he was the only ma she could never have. No matter where and who they build their new lives with, Mark and Addison's paths continue to cross throughout the years until there's nothing left to say except goodbye.


“Are you sure you don’t want to come?” She asks him with a nervous quality present in her words.

He beams at her warmly and cups the side of her face with his free hand. “Someone has to stay home and take care of the Princess,” He reminds her, adjusting the dark haired toddler with caramel skin and brilliant blue green eyes in the crook of his hip.

She nods in agreement and sighs sadly, “Right.”

“Hey,” He searches her face for the underlying meaning behind her obvious distress. “It’s only for a few days, Addie.”

“I know,” She replies her eyes darting between him and their little girl anxiously. “I’m just going to miss both of you so much.” Her hand reaches to stroke her daughter’s long black hair.

He extends an arm and draws her into his side, placing a soft kiss at her temple. “We’ll miss you a whole lot too, Addie,” He mumbles quietly against her skin.

“Mamma,” The little girl reaches with open arms towards the redhead. She obviously senses her parent’s closeness and wants to be a part of it.

“Ok Rosie,” Addison smiles sweetly at her two year old as Jake carefully places the girl in his wife’s waiting arms. She brings her face against the little girls cheek and places a string of several kisses there causing Rosie to giggle in delight. Jake grins broadly at them, his hand still resting on Addison’s back. “Mamma’s going away for a couple of days, so you be a good girl for Daddy. Ok, Princess?”

“Mamma leave?” Her butterfly shaped lips frown at the very thought and eyes widen in fear.

“I’ll be back,” Addison is quick to reassure her. “In three days,” She lifts up three of her fingers to show illustrate this in a concrete manner to the little girl.

“Tree days?” She echoes softly, unable to still articulate her h’s.

Her mother nods with a reassuring smile, “Yup. You can count down each day with Daddy before you go to bed every night. And I’ll try to call you before you go to sleep each night.” Addison taps the two year old on the nose and giggles at her open mouthed smiles.

The crackling of an intercom disturbs the nearly perfect moment as the attendant reminds those on Flight 624 that first class is now boarding.

“Alright,” Addison exhales, “Rosie? Mamma has to go now.” She notices the disappointment in her baby girl’s face but tries to brighten the moment by chiding, “Does the kissy monster need to come back?” Rosie whips her midnight hair from side to side her eyes widening with childish fervor.

The redhead presses her nose against the fullness of her daughter’s cheek before laying a kiss on Rosie’s flawlessly soft skin. “Now give Mamma a kiss,” She beckons by turning her face so Rosie can repeat the action. “Ok, love you Princess.” Addison reminds the two year old while passing her back to Jake.

“Mamma no leave!” Rosie interlocks her hands around Addison’s neck trying to make it impossible for them to separate from one another.

“Rosie, Mamma will come back.” Jake coos softly, trying to bounce her happily against his hip. But her lip is trembling and tears threaten to spill out onto her cheeks.

Addison knows she has a limited window before her motherly instincts kick in and she finds an excuse not to go. Except Jake would feel guilty about not being able to satisfy the void she’s momentarily leaving behind for Rosie. Not only that but he would also feel bad she missed out on an opportunity to stun the young, earnest minds at one of the most prestigious medical schools in the country with her brilliant advances in maternal medicine and revisit her alma mater with fond memories.

She leans forward on tiptoe and finds his lips easily. It’s soft and chaste like they’ve been doing it for years and will continue doing it for many years to come. “Bye honey,” Addison mutters sweetly.

Rosie is now making her feelings about Mamma leaving more evident when she tries to tangle her fingers in Addison’s crimson curls. Trying to be firm yet sympathetic with her daughter, Addison plants another kiss against her face and rubs their noses together. “Bye Princess. Mamma loves you very much.”

“Call us when you get there!” Jake reminds her as she’s dragging her medium sized designer suitcase onto the terminal.

She waves goodbye before completely turning the corner in the terminal and disappearing from view. The closer she gets to the plane, the quicker her heartbeats. It won’t be long before she’s revisiting the city that changed her life forever.    

~*~*~*~*

“You know, you could come with us?” Mark grins crookedly at her as she attempts to fold his clothes in the suitcase in a somewhat orderly fashion.

Julia smiles back at him and then replies teasingly, “I know. But I’m sure you and Derek will be too busy reliving the heydays of your medical school years to notice me much.”

“It’s very difficult not to notice you,” He sneaks up behind her, his teeth nibbling at her earlobe and arms encircling her waist.

She leans back into him a slight moaning escaping her lips as his mouth makes contact with one of her most sensitive spots. “You know what I mean,” She mumbles as his mouth travels down the length of her neck.

His hands press into the dip in her pelvis and she warns throatily, “Mark. Derek’s going to be here to pick you up in fifteen minutes.”

“So?” He breathes hotly along her shoulder, “We can do a lot in fifteen minutes.”

Julia’s hands cover his and then slowly wrench them away from her hip region. She turns around in his arms, encircling his neck and bringing her face a few inches from his. A slight smirk dances across her lips as she instructs bossily, “The least you can do is face me if you only have fifteen minutes to notice your fiancée.”

His lips curl into a similar expression before their mouths and bodies collide in order to take off to their individual places of ecstasy before Derek arrives.

~*~*~*

Six hours later, although it feels like nine given the unfortunate time difference their bodies aren’t accustomed to, Derek and Mark file out of the cab and into the lobby of Morningside Inn. Before the rotating doors sweep them fully inside, both men’s head sweep around to catch the once familiar glimpse of bright lights and the constant hum of the city where their lives as adults began to unfold.

“Wow, I don’t miss this at all,” Derek mutters with a nervously chuckle while draping the clothes bag over his shoulder.

Mark doesn’t object to his best friend’s vocalization, not wanting to stir up any ill memories in reference to the unforgettable act they no longer mention despite the passage of time.

They start across the pristinely ornamented lobby, but soon stop short when a pair of dangerously long legs (once ivory, now sun kissed) captures their attention. If it weren’t for the perfectly styled auburn curls and four-inch stilettos they might have guessed it was just another unattainable hot chick. But when she turns around in her royal blue knee length dress that plunges forward enough to reveal the curve of her breasts, there’s no more wondering.

She looks around for a bellhop to help her with the obscene amount of luggage she’s traveling with for a mere three days when her gaze fixates on both men. Momentarily surprise flickers across her face, but she quickly dispels that with a coy half smirk. It’s their cue to approach the counter she’s leaning against.    

“Hello boys,” She can’t help the chiding tone, “fancy seeing you two here.”

“Well of course you’re here,” Derek grumbles with false annoyance. He checks in with the desk clerk for his room with Mark and once paperwork is being finalized her turns back to Addison, “What is it they’re calling you these days…the Meryl Streep of maternal medicine?”

She tilts her head to the side and smiles with a level of innocence, “I’ve come all long way since they were last calling me, Satan.”

“I thought that was just Derek’s pet name for you,” Mark chimes tauntingly.

Addison chuckles and Derek merely rolls his eyes. The desk clerk hands him two keys and he tries to politely extract Mark and himself from the conversation.

“So I understand why the Neuro God is here. But what is the Plastics Junkie doing in New York?”

Mark lifts a brow and practically pouts, “He gets to be a God and I’m a only Junkie?”

“He saves lives Mark. How many women have died getting silicone implants?” Addison jokes harmlessly.

Derek then interrupts, “Ok. As much as I would love to listen to you two try and one up each other all evening, I’m exhausted.”

“I’d be lying if I said wasn’t either,” Addison sighs. “Besides I need to make a call.”

Both men nod and mumble similar things in agreement.

“But we should get lunch or something tomorrow,” She suggests with a shrug, which causes Derek to groan and Mark to laugh at the idea. “Oh come on, how many times are you ever going to come back to the city and eat at O’Connell’s again?”

She can see the enticement shining in Mark’s jade eyes but Derek tries to make up some half-hearted excuse about not wanting to spend any more time or money in this city than he has to.

“Look Derek, if it’s really a problem I can always cover you,” She bats her eyelashes at him in an attempt to be charming, but it’s more or less condescending.

“No,” He interjects boldly, “that’s not necessary Addison. I can pay my own way.”

“What do you say, Shep? Like old times?” Mark nudges his begrudging friend in the ribs with his elbow.  

Derek glances between the pair of them and relents, “Alright fine. But let’s say around two o’clock shall we?”

“Wouldn’t want you to miss out on your beauty sleep,” Addison jokes, causing Mark to laugh softly along side her and Derek to shove her shoulder playfully.

~*~*~*~*

Given the many years it’s been since they’ve been in the city, somehow it feels like they’ve never left or lost touch with each other. Some things may have changed like Mark’s grey to blonde ratio or the wrinkles at the corner of Derek’s eyes or even Addison’s obviously yet slight gain in weight. However these minute physical observations don’t even factor into the actual dynamic that remains when it’s just the three of them.

They sip on cheap beer and dive into plastic baskets chalk full of fried fish and greasy French fries, playing the game that nostalgia reminds them of the happy moments they spent in a city that forever connected them. Their conversation lingers on those memories of the four years they spent on the Upper West Side nearly two decades ago. Somehow they end up recalling the wilder nights and their ridiculous behavior during the two-week transition in between semesters. 

“Remember that one time we went to karaoke night?” Mark suddenly brings up with a devious grin splitting his mouth open.

Addison palms the side of her face and groans when less than desirable memories of a younger, drunken version of herself resurface.

Derek laughs, “The time Addison puked all over the bar while singing ‘Pour Some Sugar On Me?’”

Mark joins in and Addison soon follows suit, her cheeks reddening at the ridiculous memory of her younger, drunken self.

“How the Hell did it go?” Mark states in between rolling bouts of laughter.

Derek shakes his head with a broad grin, “I have no idea.”

They both glance at Addison whose eyes widen and she holds her hands up in defense. “What? That was almost twenty years ago!”

“And that was only your favorite song at the time,” Derek rolls his eyes at her with mild annoyance.

“Yeah,” Mark reminds her with a knowing grin, “you only gave us a performance every time it came on at the bars.”

She returns with a coy half smile, “I’m not twenty-five anymore nor is there enough alcohol in the world to make me…”

“Then take another,” Mark slides his beer across the table to her.

“I have a speech to give in four hours!” She exclaims, horrified at the thought of screwing up in front of hundreds of medical students who no doubt highly regard her for her contributions to science.

“She’s right, Mark,” Derek agrees.

“Thank you!” Addison wraps an arm over her ex-husband’s shoulders and placing a kiss against his cheek to show her appreciation for him still backing her.

“We should wait until after.”

~*~*~*~*

However enthusiastic Derek may have seemed about drinking after their presentations at Columbia, it soon dwindles after his third scotch when his head is spinning and eyes begin to droop.

“I’m too old for this,” Derek grumbles miserably before passing between the pair of them to go back to the hotel.

“It’s not even eleven!” Addison exclaims, sucking down another martini through a straw.

Mark heads outside with him to make sure he’s ok catching a cab before he returns to a table in the corner of the bar where Addison waits with a new drink for both of them.

“Looks like it’s just you and me Red,” He observes from across the table with a growing smirk to showcase his delight at this new turn of events.

She peers over her glass at him and muses, “We always could handle our liquor better.”    

“It’s genetic when you’re a thoroughbred,” He clicks his class against hers in agreement before taking a sip. It's an unspoken toast to them, one that borders between inappropriate and friendly. After relishing in the burn of the alcohol he asks pointedly, “How’s the husband?”

“Perfect,” She mutters with an air of sarcasm, sparkling green eyes lifting up to the ceiling and a smirk appearing at her mouth.

Mark tilts his head and shoots her a probing look.

“He doesn’t have one flaw,” She explains with a shrug, “It’s like he’s a damn saint or something.”

“Well you know, saints were sinners too,” He points out.

They chuckle easily before taking another sip of their drinks.

“How’s Julia?” She asks politely, studying his downcast expression.

He tells her without looking up first, “Good.”

When she doesn’t say anything their eyes meet across the table again. He has a pained expression on his face like there’s something he wants to say, but chews on the inside of his cheek.

Addison lifts a brow at him, bringing the glass to her lips without breaking the gaze.

Like always, he finally cracks under her intense guise. “We’re…getting married.”

She spits out her drink all over herself and then curses under her breath for reacting as such while reaching for a napkin. “Shit…this was brand new too…” She tries to dab it out with a paper napkin without much success. “Well this is ruined,” Addison frowns and then sighs dramatically, “and I need a new drink.”

She hops down off her barstool, but he grabs her forearm causing her to turn back into his body slightly. “I’ll get it,” He assures her. “You can go to the bathroom if you want to dry off there-”

“Thanks,” Is all she can manage with a slightly dejected look before walking off to the single room that makes up the bathroom.

There’s really no reason for her to react in this way. She’s married to a man who any woman would kill to have and has a beautiful daughter of her own. If anything she shouldn’t be responding to Mark’s news with anything but a smile and a congratulations, not washing gin out of her brand new silk blouse.

A few moments later she returns with minimal success on retracting the stain. He notices but doesn’t say anything. Instead he slides her martini glass towards her place at the table and casts a weak smile in her direction.

“So do you not like Julia?” He wonders lightly, his fingers tracing circles along the edge of his stout glass.

“No,” Addison squeaks up in defense with a perplexed expression, “I think she’s great.”

He waits for her to counter this with a negative opinion. When she chooses to engage in a staring contest with her martini, he leans his face forward in order to read her many thoughts. “But-” Mark prompts curiously.

She swallows and sets her jaw with determination. Her eyes lift to his and she remarks smoothly, “But nothing.”

“You spit your drink up all over yourself and you have absolutely no opinion? Come on, Addie. I know you better than that.”

“Alright,” She relents with a melodramatic sigh bringing her hands in the air. “There’s not a single thing wrong with her. It’s you.”

“Me? What’s wrong with me?”

“Come on Mark, I know you better than that.” Her lips twitch into a sly smile before catching the rim of the martini glass in between them and sucking it dry. She squints her eyes and expels a sharp gush of air as her throat burns, “You’re not the marrying type.”

“Just like I’m not the fathering type?” He challenges darkly.

Her mouth hangs open in disbelief for a few moments after processing his words. A pang of guilt stabs her chest, but she refuses to let the extent of her wounds show. There’s no need for them to rehash the low points with one another, considering the new lives they’ve established void of constant reminders. Addison glances away and waves at the waiter to bring another round of drinks. She’s going to need more to try and forget his harsh words dripping with disdain. Especially if mention of what could have been is brought up again.

After they self-medicated with another round (she stopped counting at four), she sets her drink down and leans on an elbow. “I shouldn’t have said that,” She admits sullenly.

They both inhale sharply at her words that dwell on an uncomfortable subject.

Addison shifts to a more upright position and begins stirring her drink slowly. “I just thought you and I weren’t…”

“I know,” He cuts in with evidence of sincerity in his tone.

“But maybe…” She dares to find him once more, a cautious expression forming across her face. She tells him in soft tones, “Maybe we are good together now that…things are different. Now that we are different.”

“We’ve always been good together, Red. We’re both just understanding that now.”

~*~*~*~*

Before they know it, last call is being made and they are so drunk they can barely stand up straight on their way back to the hotel. Mark convinces her to walk because he’s of the belief a hangover or drunkenness can be cured by fresh air and exercise. She bitches the entire four blocks that she’s going to throw up and he tells her to just do it already after being unable to take her complaining.

They end up laughing until their sides hurt as he slings an arm over her shoulders for support and kisses the side of her face. Her head falls in the crook of his collarbone and both of them have an idea of how the night will end. They just remain silent so as not to get their hopes up for something that really shouldn’t even be crossing their minds.

“Oh fuck! I can’t find my room key! Where the hell is it?” She stumbles down the hallway in a zigzag fashion. “Mark!” She groans while trying to distinguish between the items in her purse.

He trails behind her in a similar stomping fashion, grabbing her shoulders in an attempt to force her to slow down so he can catch up. However, his impaired judgment makes them collide together into a wall. “Shhh…” Mark presses an index finger at the opening of his lips whenever her high pitched giggles threaten to disturb the sleeping guests that might call a complaint against them.

“You shhhh…” Addison scolds him drunkenly in between peals of laughter, “…and help me find my knee.”

“Knee?” He cackles at her mispronunciation, “You mean key?”

“Yeah, that’s what I said…key!” She frowns at his stupidity, rummaging amongst all the junk in her purse. “Ah-ha!” She finishes digs out the card and sticks it inside the lock pad before jiggling the door to let them inside.

Addison tosses her purse aside, kicks off her heels, and then goes on a mission for the room service menu to curb her late night, drunken munchies.

“You only have one bed?” Mark observes coyly. He makes his way around the room careful not to trip over anything.

Addison whirls around and stumbles forward into his arms. She tries to dictate in a serious manner, “Don’t you get any ideas, Mark Sloan. Just because I have one bed, doesn’t mean I’m not a married woman.” She flashes her left hand for him to catch sight of the ring on her fourth finger. “So don’t even think about trying anything.”

“Never stopped you before,” He can’t help but taunt her, his arms holding onto her more tightly.

She gasps in horror but then giggles drunkenly at the validity of his words. “And you think you’re the marrying type when you keep…doing that.”

“What?” He feigns innocence.

“Flirting me into bed with you,” She straightens up until she’s out of his reach.

“I’m not flirting with you into anything, Addie. I’m with someone.” He decides weakly, his jade green eyes out of focus and unclear.

She eyes dance with that familiar desire and her hips sway in a way that drives him crazy whenever she bites back coquettishly, “Never stopped you before.”

Mark grabs her arm and then draws her body against his. His mouth fuses with hers until her hands bring up in between them to create some space.

Addison’s eyes flutter closed and she breathes in the scent of scotch and exhales gin. “Mark,” She protests weakly but finds her mouth falling forward against his again. “I’m. Drunk.” She informs him between closed mouth kisses she wants to make longer.

“Me too,” He admits before planting another wet kiss against her lips.

“You won’t remember will you?” She wonders with a sweet edge of hopefulness in her tone.

His hand takes her face and forces her neck back so he can taste more of her. In between the string of forbidden kisses he mumbles, creating hot patches against her skin. “Not unless. You want me to.”

“No,” Her fingers tangle in his hair and press his face deeper against her upper body.

They fall back against the sheets and perform the horizontal act until both of them reaches the inevitable climax. Then their bodies tire, sleep instantly taking hold of them. After a couple of hours, he leaves without looking back. She stirs when the door slips shut behind him. Her mind lingers in the place between consciousness and dreams, where she can’t tell if all of it was real or not.

But this distinction doesn't really matter because they still have time for another round of goodbyes.


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