"I'll think about it," he said, holding up Smith's card for her to see. "I've got the direct line to call and everything."
"Call it. But, uh, tell her first."
Cline pushed the door open all the way.
Rob stepped through the door in to a small reception area. Dawn was sitting across the room, arms crossed, elbows at her knees, tapping her feet impatiently. She was looking down at the floor.
For a moment he considered turning around and walking back out the door. He couldn't face, well, anything. He cleared his throat, quietly.
She looked up, startled. Then a smile shot across her face and she was up, flying across the floor and in to his arms. "Rob," she said, voice muffled by his shoulder, "Oh, god, I thought you were in so much trouble."
"I, uh, I was." He squeezed her tight. "I'm so sorry. Y'know, for, um, for this."
"It's okay," she said. "That Smith guy explained everything to me."
"Even that my name's not really Rob?"
She took a step back and clasped his hands, then pulled them to her chest. "He told me everything that wasn't classified and that he knew. I figured out that there might have been a reason for you to lie about your name."
"If it makes you feel any better, I think Rob suits you much better than Alex, anyway," she flashed a toothy grin, then kissed him on the cheek.
"I'm starting to think so, too."
"Just promise me one thing."
"You'll tell me about Alexander Simkins someday, too."
"I was about to when the goons showed up."
She threw her arms around his neck. "I've been convinced that's what you were going to do for the last two weeks."
Before he could offer a response she pulled his head down and kissed him long and hard.
* * *
Her car was parked outside the federal building. They headed out to the suburbs in a strange, mobile room ruled by silence and intimacy.
"So, uh, you're really okay with this?" he finally asked.
"Me not being who I say I am, the whole government showing up at your door thing, you know, this?"
She took a deep, staccato breath. "I'm a little weirded out," she told him, "But..."
Silence again descended. He counted the white lines of the Eisenhower as they passed under the car's hood. She spoke again on fifty-three.
"Yeah. I think I'm okay with it." He turned towards her in time to catch a small shrug. "I wasn't sure, but then when you walked in to the room just now I just, I...I don't know. It seemed right. As stupid and crazy as these last weeks -- hell, these last could months -- have been, seeing you walk in to that room and hearing you say my name was the first thing that's felt right in a really long time." She turned and looked at him. "And that goes to back before the world turned upside down."
"Oh." He looked down at his feet, unsure of what to say.
"Really, when it gets down to it, I didn't know you that well, so I guess I can get to know you as Rob or Alex or whatever and it won't be too big of a problem."
He chuckled. "Maybe not."
"Oh, god," she suddenly said, rolling her head back towards the driver's side window, "Am I actually listening to myself?"
"I must sound like the neediest psycho in the world. Our...our...whatever we have started with you breaking in to the house of my ex, who was married as you recall. Then I found out you were using an assumed identity and running from the government. And all I do is say, 'That's great, I'll fall for you whatever your name is.' Wow. I just. Wow."
"You want me to leave?"
"No. But maybe you should for your own safety."
"I highly doubt that you could hurt me. I was pretty well trained."
She turned and looked at him. "There are a lot of ways someone can get hurt. I highly doubt that the military taught you how to defend youself from the most dangerous ones."
"Maybe not," he replied, turning back to count white lines.
The silence lasted until they pulled in to her apartment complex.