Fandom: suits usa
Characters: harvey specter, donna paulsen, dana scott
Warnings: spoilers for 3.07 'she's mine'.
Summary: prompted by onlywordsnow 'scottie points out harvey is in love with donna'. a "what will happen next week" fanon with special guest dana scott
It gets caught in her throat and she swallows hard because this is a truth, hard and unbidden that threatens to choke her. She grips the cold hand rail, sweating profusely and watching the clock tick.. tick.. tick.
She swallows the frigid air, treads over her coat onto the balcony and lets the breath sink, sink deeper into her lungs until every air pocket is bursting with a Tuesday night's air.
This is betrayal, this is it.
(Later, she will wonder if it was coincidence that she only started to breathe again once the 6am redeye to London left the ground.)
'Mocha latte for the lady,' Mike greets with and she squints suspiciously.
'No. Don't - Donna!,' he parries back, like she's accused him of murder.
He doesn't last a second, he's such a baby, because he's spilling before she even takes the cup from him.
'There's a meeting in the conference room booked for the entire day.'
She watches his face, hesitantly pinched in wait for a reaction, a lightbulb moment.
'Mike. Darby is in New York.'
He frowns. 'How do you know its him? Maybe Louis-'
'Don't say it,' she mutters, half-heartedly. There is no point attempting to teach him to be cool anymore.
'Got Litt up,' he whispers and then blows out his own hand-gun.
Donna is surprised when she sees brunette hair on the other side of the plexiglass window. Her eyebrows are forced down in ambivalence. She didn't expect this.
'Scottie,' she states as the other woman slips out of a cab.
'Donna,' Scottie replies and they smile at each other in some sort of empathy.
They take lunch together, both for lack of a better time-filler and also, really, because Donna actually likes her. She admires the shoes, the tenacity, the truth.
I'm in love with him, Donna, she recalls Dana saying like it was the simplest statement in the world. Like it was breathing fresh air.
'How is Stephen?' Donna asks, crunching down on lunch so that noisy eating will reduce the lulls in their conversations where the name h a r v e y fits.
'My Stephen or your Stephen?' Dana asks, pressing her fork to her lips, looking all too uncomfortable.
'You know?' Donna says, grinning facetiously. 'Well if you know, then you know.'
Dana laughs, 'oh well, well, I'm not intimately acquainted, no, but I heard.' Dana's smile twists genuinely and the 'poor you' pity seems to work for her.
'From Harvey,' Donna mutters and the other woman has the humility to shrug.
'It bothers him,' they say in unison. For some reason Donna laughs.
'Well, I suppose murdering a bunch of people is cause for irritation.'
Scottie lowers her fork, staring decisively at Donna.
'Don't do that to yourself,' she says quietly. 'It's not worth it.'
you would know, comes easily and she feels so tired and bitter at the thought.
'Lunch?' he interrogates and Donna rolls her eyes.
Harvey gives narcissism a rest for all of 5 seconds before he talks through pursed lips.
'Is she okay,' he starts, 'did she ask you about me?' and Donna's eyes snap up to him, watching every intonation of anxiety in his voice. He worried, she thinks. Good, she thinks.
'We talked about Stephen actually,' and pretends not to hear the sound of every molar grinding into its reciprocal.
'And?' Harvey demands, the cut on his eye making him out to be tougher than he is.
'The sample sale in Paris she went to the other week. Why do you never go on business trips to Paris?'
She expels every molecule of bitterness from her system and then sucks it all back in. 'She's here for Darby.'
Relief splays over his face before he makes to say something. She tilts her head a quarter of an inch to the right and dares him to ask it.
'Are you okay,' he says and she blinks just so she can shake the effort of not screaming out.
God Harvey, what do you think?
'Are you serious,' she replies, 'Of course not. I'm not even a measure close to okay. I broke a promise for that slimeball and put myself out there, got invested in a bad risk. A stupid risk. I should know better. But,' she cautions as his face begins to melt into sympathy, a sort of greedy pity that says i told you so, 'I will be fine. Just as soon as you make him pay.'
Harvey nods. 'He will.'
She is twice as efficient, twice as quiet during the day. Despite this, she manages to chew through a biro as she waits for Harvey to come back from court.
He strides over to her desk as she looks up. His undone tie tells her more than a play by play. In that moment, every single bone in her body moves imperceptibly towards the ground.
'Almost,' Harvey says in apology. 'It's going to take a while. He's.. played a good game.'
'Is there anything else for today?'
He shakes his head. 'No.'
She stays till close anyway, doesn't leave until Harvey turns the light off. Somehow, it just doesn't feel right to go. On the elevator down to the ground floor, as he talks to Mike in an agitated whisper, Donna counts her breaths.
One, two, in, out.
She never quite manages to swallow it down.
It is most definitely the fact that she doesn't know how to deal with it that she demands Harvey let her fire the lying son of a bitch herself. It makes her feel better the way Stephen's face purses in that stupid way she now hates. He looks for a way out, a little oculum pro oculo. She doesn't give him the chance.
'You are no longer under the employment of Pearson Darby Specter. You may leave, or be escorted out.'
She denies herself a smug smile when he winces on his way out of his chair.
'Why don't you go fuck yourself?'
'How did he take it?' Rachel asks.
'Better than he took Harvey's right hook.'
'I bet that would've been amazingly hot to watch.'
'...and dirty. But good dirty.'
Dana is lingering by the entrance when Donna spots her. She sighs, pauses a moment and then walks toward her.
The brunette just shakes her head.
'I'm not here about the case,' she interupts as Donna starts to make Harvey's salutations and excuses in the same sentence.
'So you're here to supervise the persecution of his favourite pet?'
'I'm here to make sure Harvey nails his ass to a cell for what he did.'
Lunch. Again. Donna is almost at the point of emailing Dana's assistant and telling her to book in monthly meets because its somehow easier sitting across from a woman that knows how it feels and yet so diligently and delicately avoids talking about it. Tactful. She respects that.
'It's not like I meant it. I just think marriage isn't on the cards for me.'
'Well your Stephen sounds only a smidgen less interesting than this Stephen.'
Dana probably notes the careful disuse of possessive pronoun.
'Playing badminton is mundane anyway.'
Donna smiles and thinks about all the lines of acquaintanceship she's overstepping as she says, 'why do we have such terrible taste in men?'
'Well we have the same taste in men. Maybe if we both actively avoided people we found compatible we'd get somewhere.'
The redhead cringes. They've come to the head. All of the skirting about the person.
'Dana.. I wasn't in love with Stephen.'
She feels every ounce of shame at the statement but humility aside, her self-preservation trumps. Dana's lips curl into a terse smile.
'You know I wasn't talking about Stephen.'
Dana takes her silence to stock. 'You told me once you weren't in love with him.'
'Who?' Donna asks evenly because the genteel has turned to dust. This is power play.
Dana smirks. 'And maybe you aren't,' she says, softer now, 'but you don't go and punch someone and throw them into a mirror unless you're in love.'
'What?! Don't be-'
'Donna, don't. You're smarter than that.'
Waves of irritation radiate off her as she sits there at Daniel's on Madison before Dana gets up to leave.
'So you're friends now, is that it? Going to gang up against me?'
Donna raises an eyebrow. 'Hardly.'
She watches him smile a little, the consoling way he's been treating her these past two days sets her on edge. He doesn't love her, she doesn't think. She thinks he just feels possessive. Which makes her feel a little sad and not at all sentimentally.
'Dana leaves as soon as Stephen is in jail.'
'Thats if Cameron takes the Huntley case.'
'He's considering dropping it?'
'There's a few complex extradition laws to deal with in advance.'
'That little -'
Harvey just shrugs and for the first time Donna actually thinks he feels as tired as she does.
'I'm sorry,' he says as he turns, then falls back to face her.
'Don't be, it was my decision,' she replies, quietly.
'You didn't make him do this. None of this is your fault either.'
'I had a rule.'
'Donna,' he starts. 'Don't.'
'No, Harvey. It's true. I'm, uh, it's a lesson learnt.'
He digs his hands into his pockets. 'Are you angry about the, er - his face?'
She laughs after a pause. 'No. Deserved what he got. Just, uh, tell me, did it feel good?'
'God damn brilliant.'
They sit in his office, scotch glasses nestled in between their palms in hushed celebration. Donna's stockinged feet hang off the side. Something plays in the background as Harvey perches himself on the side of his desk.
'Aren't you glad its over?' Donna murmurs, simmering with bitterness despite the fact that Stephen is locked away.
'Finally,' Harvey says. 'Finally.'
'It all sort of worked out,' she replies. 'Name on the door, Darby and Jessica talking splitting custody and Cameron's been humiliated.'
Harvey takes a short sip. 'Everyone got out unscathed. Everyone except you.'
Donna sits up slowly and places the tumbler on the coffee table. 'I think you need to apologise to Jessica,' she tells him.
'Don't deflect,' he says with an answering shrug.
'I got revenge, that was enough.'
'That's not enough,' he murmurs, swallowing.
Donna laughs, 'Got anything to offer?' she intones.
Harvey places the glass next to him and shrugs. 'Maybe someday.'
They drink to that.