Death didn’t strike fast. Neither did it drag on slowly. Slow. Fast. Those are words related to the passage of time. And death doesn’t know the meaning of time. There is none. Her human mind couldn’t tell you if it took seconds or centuries, from the moment she breathed out for the last time, until her heart stopped beating and her mind went blank. But ‘both’ sounded about right once she heard her own thoughts again.
She inhaled and her chest hurt. That didn’t worry her, her chest had been hurting on each intake of oxygen since Hale-
Every, supposedly dead, muscle in her body froze. Her own words played back in her head.
'Maybe I'll even get to see… him… again.'
She felt tears slipping past her closed eyelids. It wasn’t fair, she’d just died, made a grand speech, bravely walked into the light like a true warrior babe and she was still stuck in an afterlife where she could feel grief? Afterlife sucked. Especially if he wasn’t…
More saltwater slid down her face. She was afraid to open her eyes in case he wasn’t there. He needed to be there. If he wasn’t, right now, staring at her and waiting for her to open her 'ridiculously beautiful blue' eyes she’d tear this stupid Valhalla to pieces herself, and after that tear him to pieces too.
But then out of nowhere, she felt a warm palm gently touch the side of her face and a thumb run over her damp cheek, her eyes popped open without thought. It took a moment for her surrounding to come into focus, but then there he was. Hale as she remembered him. Not in those last moments she’d rather forget forever, with a blade though his chest and blood on his shirt, but as she knew him, as she’d first met him, with his soft gaze and his favorite dark jacket… fedora and all.
Her tears didn’t stop coming though. She was sobbing, like she had half on top of him, when she begged him not to go; like she had most nights after.
But this time it was the right hands that encircled her; the right voice that tried to calm her.
"Kenzi. Hey, hey, Kenz. It’s okay, I’m here, I’m here."
She cried harder. Clenching her arms around him like she’d never again let him go. She wouldn’t. Not again.
She couldn’t hold it back anymore, it clawed out of her throat. That word. The one she should have said as soon as he asked, the one she had wanted to say as soon as he asked.
And then she was laughing. She was laughing and her stomach was beginning to hurt from it, but that was okay, that was more than okay, because her heart didn’t hurt. It had for so long. But it didn’t have to now. So she laughed even as she held him closer, breathing in his scent, the one that had all but vanished from their sheets.
"Yes, I’ll marry you. We can get hitched here right? That can happen? I mean this place has gotta have a bossking dude. That’s sorta like a priest."
Hale’s own chest rumbled with laughter against hers.
"I missed you, ‘lil mama."
She pushed back from him, but only so that she’d have enough space to smack his breast.
"Don’t even… you missed me? You missed me? You’re not the one who got left behind, and what the hell Hale? You’re the siren. I’m the human. That was so not how that was supposed to go, you… you ass.”
Hale’s hand went over hers and he lent forwards kissing her brow.
"I’m sorry, won’t happen again."
She felt her firmly set lips twitch in a little smile she was hard pressed to contain. But the happiness at his presence made that too hard, so she gave up with a sigh.
"See that it doesn’t Mr. Kenzi."
His own grin was blinding. But before she had the chance to take it in in all its beautiful glory, his face was inches from hers and she could feel his breath on her lips. This time it was her who closed the distance and kissed him. Home. He was here and she was home.
Everything else – Being dead; Valhalla; Upcoming resurrections she had no doubt Bo was planning already - didn’t matter right then. They could wait. Kenzi and Hale though? In her very important opinion they had waited too long already.