Title: No Secrets
Characters: Sara Tancredi and Pam Mahone
Spoilers: Set after season 4 - contains unspecific spoilers for anything aired so far of season 4
Challenge: Written for pbhiatus_fic's 2009 Hiatus Challenge #3 - How Do You Do?
Author's Note: Actually, I'm not a 100% sure if Pam and Sara haven't met before, I'm not so good at remembering minute details of TV show timelines. But as far as I'm concerned, they haven't. If I'm wrong, please let me know or pretend that they haven't. :o)
The Windy City lived up to its name today. A cold, biting wind hit Sara square in the face and she wished she had taken the woolen scarf instead of the thin, flimsy cotton one when she left the house this morning.
Maybe it was just as well, she thought to herself.
Discord tugged at her subconscious as she tried to sort out her feelings. For what felt like the twentieth time, her eyes scanned the name etched into the simple, modest gravestone. Frank Ambrosius Tancredi. She hadn't even known he had a second name as eccentric as Ambrosius. She let out a short, ironic chuckle. It signified how little she knew about her father.
For a split second she felt the urge to say something out loud, but the words remained at the tip of her tongue. Their disconnect had been the tightrope between them to balance on when he was still alive. It was wound just as taut, now that he had left this world. Was she waiting for something to fall into place, standing here at his comfortless grave?
She shook her head and turned to go. Her father didn't have any answers for her--alive or dead.
Walking along the path to the entrance, she wrapped her arms around her herself, when something caught her attention. She didn't know what had drawn her gaze to the forlorn looking woman standing by a grave a few yards to her right. She walked a few steps closer until she could read the name on the gravestone: Cameron Mahone.
The brown haired woman suddenly spun around at the noise behind her. Sara panicked for a split second when she recognized the woman's face from a photo that Alex dropped once and she had picked up for him. He hadn't elaborated, but he had confirmed it was his wife.
She felt the woman's eyes lingering questioningly on her, and she didn't know what came over her when she asked, "Pam?"
Pam's eyes squinted and a frown creased her forehead. "Do I know you?"
Did she? "I, uh... My name is Sara Tancredi."
She waited for a spark of recognition from Pam. How much did this woman know about her husband, about his past--the prison break, the hunt, Sona, the Company, any of it?
"Is that supposed to tell me anything?" Pam asked.
"No, I... I know your husband," Sara said non-committally. She suddenly regretted having given in to her impulse.
"You know Alex?"
"Yes, I..." She searched for some harmless explanation that would also make sense. "I used to work as a doctor at the Fox River penitentiary. We once had a prisoner there whose case your husband was involved in." Look at that, Sara thought, I'm not even lying.
"And how is it that you recognize me?"
She had to think quickly, and decided she best keep it down to business. "Agent Mahone interviewed me a few times about information connected to this prisoner." Okay, this was a half-lie. "One day we ran into each other at the coffee machine in the hall. Your photo fell out of his wallet and he mentioned your name." A quarter-lie, maybe?
Maybe she could still save the situation. She added, "I'm really sorry. I don't know why I stopped to talk to you. I should be on my way." She gestured towards the path she had strayed from, and suddenly she wasn't sure whether to add what she wanted to say next. But then, it would only be the polite thing to say, even though it sounded so bizarre to her. "Say hello to your husband from me."
Pam nodded curtly. "Thank you, I will."
Sara tried to read her expression. Was she just saying that? Was Alex even living with Pam? Had he returned to her after everything that had happened?
The last thing Sara said was, "I'm sorry for your loss," before she turned around and quickly walked away, not giving Pam another chance to ask questions.
Stupid, stupid, stupid! she chided herself, walking briskly to her car. It was then that she made a promise to herself. The past was the past. And that's where it would stay. Anything and everything connected to Fox River and the rollercoaster ride that had followed after Michael's breakout would stay between the people who knew--and only them. No more putting her foot in her mouth.
Only one thing she wasn't sure about: Would she tell Michael about her encounter when he got home tonight? Hadn't they made a promise, back then by the LA dockside? No more secrets.
That was a lifetime and a half ago. They were living another life now. But some things applied to this life as much as it applied to the old one. No secrets. Not even this one.