A quiet evening mist had fallen over the Resistance headquarters on D’Qar that day, a quiet mist at odds with the bustling members and squadrons hustling this way and that, each on their own imperative mission. The infantry division marched across the field; X-Wings blazed through the air. Only one figure remained stationary: a man with dark, tousled hair and thick eyebrows, watching enviously as his companions continued their drills.
Poe Dameron had never been known to sit back and relax when there was work to do. Yet there he was, lounging on the stoop of one of the few buildings on the planet’s surface, a cold cup of something settled in between his legs. The fact that it was no longer steaming did little to improve the something’s taste. Not that Poe was even trying to stomach it any longer. It wasn’t going to fix him, and it wasn’t going to cheer him up. His missed work. He missed BB-8. Most of all, he missed the sky.
A barely suppressed wince left him when he heard your voice from across the camp. A moment later, and the rest of you followed, hair lashed tightly away from your face, which was red and gleaming from your run with the rest of your squad. Poe smiled what he hoped was his typical winning smile. If it was, it had no effect other than to crease your brow with worry.
“What are you doing out of bed?” you asked.
Poe sighed, very nearly rolling his eyes. “I’m fine, [Name].” Your expression remained unchanged. He moved the stone cup of green-whatever, and patted the now vacant space in his lap. “Come here.”
You wavered. Poe continued to stare earnestly up at you until you cracked. Once settled, he rested his chin on the top of your head. “I really am fine.” His chin rest vanished as you twisted around enough to frown at him.
“Poe, you were tortured.”
“What good’s a man if he can’t handle a little torture every now and then?”
“You wrecked your TIE fighter.”
“‘Wrecked’ is a strong word. We were actively being shot at.”
“You came home with a concussion.”
“You sound just like the general.”
“Were you bothering her about returning to active duty again?” His lack of answer was answer enough. “It’s been two days.”
Suddenly, Poe found himself incapable of keeping his smile. He looked away, up to the sky, where the darkening at one edge of the mist above the trees told him that night was beginning to fall. If only he could soar above that mist and see the sunset himself. It might do him some good, to remember there was still some light in the galaxy. “You want torture, this is it. At least Good ol’ Kylo kept me strapped down.”
When you did not respond, Poe looked back down–and he did not like what he saw. There were shadows underneath your eyes, and a look in those eyes he was certain you didn’t want him to notice. Sometimes he forgot that his being tortured was a sort of torture for his loved ones as well. As much as you tried to hide it, he knew you had cried when he hadn’t come back in time, and had cried still more when you found out why. This was part of why he wanted so badly for things to get back to normal, because Poe knew as soon as he did, you would.
Hastily, you turned away, and rubbed at one eye with a scarred knuckle. Embarrassed to be worried over him, eh? Poe felt the first flurries of an idea forming. “It’s just a few more days, Poe. General Organa can’t afford to have her best pilot out for long. She’ll let you back out as soon as you’re healed up.”
He smirked. “Gonna have to quit forcing this junk on me before that happens,” he said, gesturing at his stone cup of green beside him. “No idea why you insist on feeding your boyfriend raw sewage.”
“It’s tea, you jerk!” You shoved him, but there was more playfulness in the gesture than there had been since his return. Poe laughed, nuzzling his face into the warm (if sweaty) crook of your neck. This seemed to still you somewhat, enough that he felt he could implement his plan from before.
“A bit of space and sky would do me more good than being locked up all day, and whatever this drink is you keep foisting on me.”
“You’re not supposed to fly until the general gives you the okay,” you said.
“I’m not supposed to fly missions until General Organa okays it. You’re the only one that said I have to keep both feet on the ground.”
“You had multiple burns and blood loss–not to mention the head injury!”
“My head has never felt better.” Poe leaned in a little closer, so that his lips brushed the shell of your ear. “We could watch the sunset together above the cloud line.”
You were torn. He could tell you were torn.
“When was the last time we got to do that?” he asked. The next thing he heard was something that sounded like a cross between a bellow and a snort. You were out of his lap, but at the same time you left it, you grabbed his hand and yanked him after you toward where the rest of the pilots had left their X-Wings after their practice run.
“Can’t believe I’m helping you steal a ship,” he heard you mutter. Poe really did manage his usual smile at that. It was like his fingers could already feel the thrusters in his grip.
“It’s because you love me,” he reminded you, “and I love you.” Just like always, that would be enough. Poe never needed much to get back on his feet. Just some air and the woman he loved–and that first shock of orange as his X-Wing rose above the clouds.