Fandom/Characters: Person of Interest. Finch and Bear
Word Length: 605
Summary: Finch has a ritual
Finch is not a creature of habit, he knows better than more that routine can get a person killed, but every night after John leaves the library Finch performs a ritual of sorts that started not long after Bear became a part of his life.
He always loosens his tie and unbuttons his vest. There is no need for his armor of silk and wool. Not here. Not now.
As soon as he gets up from his chair, Bear will always get up and follows him.
He goes to the top level of the library, Bear follows close behind, and pulls a white dust cover off a lumpy red chair. It looks like any other chair, but it was the one thing he kept from a time when he still knew his own name.
He opens a water stained cardboard box and pulls out an electric kettle. He plugs it in. As he waits for it to heat up, he decides which flavor of tea he wants. The boxes of tea sit inside the cardboard box, just like the countless boxes that litter the library. Sometimes he picks camomile, other times he picks a soothing mint.
After his water is ready, he pours it into a white ceramic cup and carries it over to his chair. He sits down and sinks into the red leather, the smell of dust all around him.
Bear rests his head on Finch's knee. He always starts by rubbing Bear's soft ears. He takes a deep breath and begins.
The words always come out as barely a whisper. He always starts at the beginning. Stories about his childhood flow from his lips like water from a fountain.
As words flow faster and faster his voice gets louder until it echos off the library's ruined walls. Sometimes he wonders how much Bear understands, but maybe that's not the point. Maybe just saying the words and letting them go is the point.
After he talks about his childhood he takes a sip of lukewarm tea and moves on to his formative years. Even though Nathan is still a big part of his life he can't talk about him. Some wounds are indeed not healed by time.
When Finch started talking to Bear, he had only talked for a few minutes, but now he finds himself talking for over an hour. To his credit, Bear keeps his head on Finch's leg.
When they have failed to save a number, Finch always talks about his guilt and Bear accepts it.
He talks about his secrets and fears.
Finally he talks about Grace. As he talks at length about Gace's goodness, Bears tail will wag. Finch likes to believe that Bear would have loved Grace.
Once he finishes talking he will put away his tea kettle, put the dust cover back on his chair and walk down to the lower level of the library. He watches as Bear goes over to his dog bed and lays down.
Finch will always go out of the library and stand of the sidewalk for several minutes . The quite of the library and the din of the city is quite the study in contrast.
Sometimes he hails a cab and sometimes he walks to one of his many apartments, but no matter what he does he always feels a lightness that he wraps around himself like a suit. The lightness will last until they find the next number.
Finch may not be a creature of habit, but he is a creature of ritual.