Title: Just One Thing Missing
Ratings: Teen and Up
Warnings: No Warnings Apply
Relationships: Evan “Buck” Buckley/Taylor Kelly, Evan “Buck” Buckley & Eddie Diaz
Characters: Evan “Buck” Buckley, Taylor Kelly, Eddie Diaz,
Tags: Rule 63!Buck, Getting Together, Alternate Universe
Summary: There was just one thing missing from Buck’s life and she hoped it find, she just didn’t expect to find it in Taylor Kelly.
Word Count: 4,742
Year: Season 4 (2021
Spoilers: Up Through Season 4
Notes: Written for the challenge To Every Season for Summer.
“She hasn’t stopped looking at you since she came into the open area,” Eddie said.
Buck turned her head and looked at him before she followed his gaze. She turned back and looked at Eddie. “Don’t you know who that is?”
“No? Should I?”
“Really, Eddie? Are you that mask blind?” Buck bumped her shoulder into Eddie before she picked up her drink and took a sip. Things were more relaxed in LA at the moment, but still, outside bars were being used more. This pace was pretty busy, but thankfully, Eddie knew the guy who ran it, so they were given a table.
“Is that Taylor Kelly?” Eddie asked.
“Yes, you idiot.”
“Hey, I’m not the one that has gone down on her. That was you.”
“I hate you.”
“No, you love me.” Eddie grinned at her before snagging his beer and taking a sip. He held up his hand and pointed at Buck’s drink when the waiter looked at them. He held up two fingers after making sure the waiter saw the two and pointed to Buck’s drink. “Now. She’s still looking at you. You are the one that said she had changed.”
“Her stories are different. I do not want that, though, Eddie. I want something meaningful. I love you but not like that. I might be happy with just you and Chris as my best friends for the rest of my life, but I want something more.”
“You know I am happy with the friendship we have. I am not sure I’ll find someone, but as long as whoever you find will never be upset about you and me and how we are, I don’t care who you date. Even if it is Taylor Kelly. You told me that you felt like you could have fallen in love with her if you had been given the time. Go take a chance.”
Buck shook her head. She was supposed to be out with Eddie tonight, and she wasn’t going to ditch him. They got very few nights out together without Chris, especially with the pandemic.
“If she wants something with me, she’ll have to understand.”
“Evan,” Eddie said.
“No, don’t name me. Even if I found out that my name was chosen with love by Daniel and Maddie, it doesn’t mean that I like it more than I did before.”
“I do it when you need to listen to me. You can’t find someone like you want by being scared of going out there. Your last date last year really sucked; that guy wasn’t worth talking to you, much less getting his hands on your naked body.”
“See, this is why you will never find someone. Just go over there.”
“Eddie, please, no. I need a night out with no pressure other than making sure you go down first.”
Eddie laughed, but he nodded his head. He smiled when two more drinks were set down, and then his eyes went out to the city again.
The bar was great, it had been put out into the roof of the building it was on, and it was booming. The indoor area was mostly for larger parties that could afford to spend that much money to be isolated all the way.
“Fine. Then we can sit here and drink and let everyone think we are actually going to go home and have the headboard hit the wall.”
“I swear there are times you turn into a college boy when you have alcohol in you.”
“There are worse things. I’m still a nicer college boy than most.”
Buck shook her head. Eddie hadn’t stumbled over her chosen name at all. He had gone with the flow, and despite having a few issues where Eddie hadn’t trusted in Buck fully, they had worked out well. Bobby had been more than willing to ensure that Buck knew she was getting a partner. Eddie just had to learn to trust that Buck did know what she was doing and that she was strong and could do the job.
Unlike most other men, Eddie had only done it because he had not wanted her to hurt herself. He had slowly learned how strong Buck was. He had learned how to trust in what Buck did and how she did it. He was even the one to back up many of her crazier plans when he could figure out her angle.
Buck checked her phone when it vibrated. She wasn’t shocked to see it was Taylor’s number. She never deleted Taylor’s numbers, or anyone’s, really. Taylor hadn’t messaged her in a long time, and Buck hadn’t really thought of her other than passing thoughts when she was on the news.
“Taylor messaged me and asked if I wanted to go and hook up in the bathroom.”
“Ah, I see. Well, that is vastly different than what you want.”
“It’s not really safe either. I don’t know what is going on in her life.”
Buck: Sorry, I’m hanging out with Eddie tonight. I’m not really looking for a hookup either.
Taylor: No? Are you looking for something more?
Buck: Yes. Someone I can live with and make a bigger family with on top of the one I have now.
There was nothing after that. So Buck just ignored it. She laid her phone face down on the table and looked at her drink. “We need to go get food after this.”
“I was thinking we would snag food from the diner we like and then go and sit in my driveway and eat. Easier to get into the house and get to bed afterward. We are getting too old for this.”
“Maybe you, old man but not me.” Buck smiled at Eddie’s words, but just like him, she wasn’t fully feeling it. They had gone out. They had talked for almost three hours now, but it was time to head back to their life and be happy in their own pajamas. “I’ll raise your driveway and offer up pajamas on the couch and watching Dirty Jobs.”
“I’ll take that and raise you Chinese.”
“Get the Uber; I’ll order the Chinese.” Buck picked up her phone, and she first saw a message from Taylor telling her to call her tomorrow after three.
Buck found Taylor, and she nodded her head. There was still something there between them, and Buck was willing to see where it went.
“I don’t know,” Eddie said.
Buck looked at him and glared, which set Chris off laughing again.
“You gotta help me, Superman; your father is no help on getting me into a date outfit.”
“I liked the purple dress you tried on first.”
Now Eddie was laughing. There was no way for Buck to flip him off without Chris seeing, and that wasn’t something she was willing to do. She opened the closet door a little more to look at herself in the mirror. She snagged the dress Chris was talking about and held it up to her body. It was Buck’s favorite dress, but it was also what she had been wearing when she had hooked up with Taylor the first time. She really didn’t want to send that message on their date.
“What about that lilac skirt?” Eddie asked, still wheezing a little from laughing.
Buck looked at Eddie in the reflection in the mirror. The skirt was the one she had worn on the single date they had gone on. They had learned a lot about each other and felt that affection, but when it came to the end of the night and the kiss, there had been no passion in it. Buck had pushed it, but the end had been a horrible night sitting on the couch beside Eddie feeling like it was the worst thing in the world that they didn’t have that kind of chemistry.
“With what shirt?”
“That one white one with the butterflies,” Chris said.
Buck grabbed the items from the closet. She went into the hallway and slipped into Eddie’s bedroom to change since the little bathroom sucked for that. Buck’s things were scattered all along Eddie’s bathroom counter, and it seemed like they were more intimate than they were. It wasn’t the worst in the world, but there were times she worried that Eddie was harming himself by not looking for someone else. She might be enough for him, but he wasn’t enough for her.
Outfit on, Buck headed back into her room, and she spun to make the skirt flare out.
“You are cute!” Chris said.
“Aww, thanks, Chris. So is this the winner?”
“Yes,” Eddie said.
“Come do my eyes?” Buck asked.
“Sure. Chris, you gonna stay in here and read?”
“Yes.” Chris picked up his book again, and he laid down on his side, opening up the cover.
Buck followed Eddie to the bathroom and swallowed when he slapped the counter for her to sit on it. She fidgeted less when she was sitting instead of standing. They were still nearly the same size. There were a lot of times in school that Buck wished she was shorter. She had hated it when she graduated high school, and she had an inch on a few of the guys. By the time she had settled in, she was over six feet and hated it. She was all leg, and that made it a little better. Finding dresses was hard as hell, though. She had learned how to alter them a little bit, but she wasn’t the best at it. Eddie’s abuela had stepped in on that front.
“Are you going to regret moving in with me?”
“No, if someone is scared off by it, they can fuck off,” Buck said. She spread her legs to allow Eddie to get in close to put eyeliner on her. She didn’t wear much make-up, even on dates. She didn’t like it, but she loved how her eyes looked with eyeliner. She also sucked at putting it on. “You are my best friend and anyone who doesn’t like it; I don’t want them in my life.”
“You are going to end up sad and alone.”
“Nope, I’ll always have you. If I can’t find someone who fills that part of me that you don’t, I’ll just go out and have sex when I need it and settle for being happy with you and Chris. You are my guy, Eddie. I wish I could form the attachment we needed to make you it for me, but I can’t be without sex with another person. I need that kind of contact.”
Eddie brushed his thumb over Buck’s cheek and smiled at her before starting to line her eye. There was no talking when that was going on since that had been a horrible day with Buck’s eye swelling.
“Bonito,” Eddie said as he put the lid on the eyeliner.
“Good. I am taking an Uber. I have no clue what Taylor has planned for food, so I want to ensure. So I could be wasted tomorrow, but I already told her I am not going home with her and she is not coming here. She knows that I live with you.”
“You have been texting her a lot over the last three weeks.”
Buck shrugged. She had wanted to get a good rapport between them before she went out on the first date.
“I like it. It’s been good. We already know we work sexually. She cracked the joke that she should have had a roommate during everything. She never realized how much affection and everything she got from those around her filled something that was empty during COVID. We didn’t have that. You, Hen, and Chim lived with me, and then when everyone went home, you just took me back here with you, and then you moved me in without asking.”
“We were happier that way. I know that everyone else really doesn’t believe that we are a couple, but whatever comes from this, don’t let anyone at the station shame you.” Eddie tipped Buck’s face up to where they looked each other in the eye. “Promise me.”
“Okay, I guess you are as good as you will get. So go kiss Chris goodnight and then get out of here.”
“My Uber is about ten minutes. So I’ll get a good and long goodbye from Chris.” Buck leaned in and pressed a kiss to Eddie’s cheek. “I wish you could make me happy.”
“I do too.”
The restaurant was fancy as hell, and Buck wasn’t sure what they were doing there, but she was willing to go along. The place had signs about the procedure, so Buck texted Taylor to see if she was already inside.
Taylor: Yes, the hostess will take you to my table. Just give them your name.
Buck: Which one?
Taylor: I don’t call you by anything but Buck or Buckley; take your pick.
Buck smiled at that. Eddie was the only one in the world that was allowed to call her Evan without her permission. She had been Evan for so long that shedding that name was the best thing for her. Evan came with many things attached, her mother screaming at her that she was worthless when she didn’t do what was wanted of her. Buck would never be the perfect child that her mother wanted, and she knew it. So she made herself happy, and most of the time, it seemed that making herself happy meant pissing off her mother.
“Right this way. Miss Kelly opted for one of the fully blocked-off areas. If you need anything, there is a device on your table to get your server’s attention. They don’t come into the room unless you ask or part of your food is ready.”
Buck could get behind that. She liked the thought of being alone with Taylor. This was something that would make Buck want to come back here after this was all over if they kept it. She had been in a restaurant once that had a stop light system for the table. If something was needed, the disc was flipped to red, and the waitstaff stopped. If it was flipped on the green, the waitstaff stayed away.
The place was fancy, but it was evident that it wasn’t the kind of place that turned anyone away. A couple at a table wore ratty jeans and drank a glass of wine each. So fancy but not snotty. Buck liked that.
Taylor looked beautiful and had a smile on her face but didn’t get up from the table when the door was open. Buck stepped into the room and the door shut before Taylor stood up. Her mask was hanging off the chair, ready to grab.
“I hope this place is okay?” Taylor asked.
“Yeah, it looks great. I was a little worried.”
“I did a story on how some of the places are opening up and how they are managing everything. I knew that they had a good set of rooms for this. They used to have a banquet hall in here, but they moved that to another place and were getting ready to renovate to have more seating when this all happened. So they made a collection of these rooms. They are going to keep it going after the world has returned to whatever our new normal is going to be.”
“How are you doing now?”
“Better. I’m getting out a little more, but I worry about catching COVID. I have talked to so many people about things. My camera guy has become a germaphobe. I understand. He’s got a little one at home that he wouldn’t want to have caught it. We are so careful with everything. That night in the bar was the first time I had gone anywhere, and I saw you, and I remembered the look on your face when I told you no. I hurt you, and I know it. I had tried to keep things light, and I know you can’t help how you feel, and I couldn’t either.”
“Hey, it’s okay. Maybe we just met at the wrong time. I was ready for more, and you weren’t at a place in your life where it was possible.”
Taylor ducked her head and blushed a little. “I think I am ready, yes.”
“Good. I’m glad, but even if this fizzles, it’s not a wasted effort. We both learn a little more about what we want.”
“You are not that much different than how you were before, but you are also a lot. It’s confusing.”
“I was still kind of an idiot when you met me, and we did our thing. I wasn’t ready to be more and settle even though I thought I was.”
“What changed? Diaz?”
“Yes. He and Chris.”
“Chris is his son, right?”
“Yes. He’s…mine as much as he can be. Eddie and I have no problems with the whole family we have made. I wish he was enough for me, but he’s not. I love him, but it’s soft and sweet, and it doesn’t complete me.”
“You’ve said. We are both workaholics. I know you love your job as much as I love mine. I also know that Eddie and Chris are a part of you, and if I can’t accept them, this won’t go anywhere. I heard back from most of the station when I sent the apology a few months after that horrible fiasco.” Taylor picked up her glass of water and took a drink before grabbing the pitcher and refilling her glass. She handed the pitcher over to Buck next.
“Thanks.” Buck filled her glass with water, and she wondered where to go with this. It felt like they were diving deep into the dirty details one saved for later dates, but they were closer than most people were on first dates.
“There is one thing I wanted to talk about. We are kind of closer than most people are, and I just…I will understand if I can’t meet Chris for a while, but I would like to meet with Diaz to make sure he’s not going to be a huge asshole. If he doesn’t want me in your life, Buck, he will not accept this. He will not be kind to me, and I can’t do that.”
“No, he’s already talked about wanting to have an evening out that is just the three of us. Meeting Chris is huge, and with everything going on, I wouldn’t want to have him get close to someone, and they leave. Eddie thought about dating when others pushed him to it, but he just can’t stand the idea right now. So, for now, it’s a yes to Eddie and maybe someday soon with Chris. He will know I’m dating and know who, but I’ll let him broach that topic when he wants it.”
Taylor gave a smile, and it was an honest and true one. “Let’s see about what we want to eat. The steak here is to die for, and the cheesecake is massive but split; it won’t be too much on your diet.”
“You remembered,” Buck said.
“Of course, I know what you need to do to stay fit for work. I’ve actually spent a while learning about various diets. Bulking and the like for women. It was an eye-opener. I’m good with sticking to running for health stress relief, but more than that, I’ll just watch.”
“Well, I don’t mind being watched.” Buck winked, and Taylor laughed.
“So, I know your name is Evan, but you don’t like it. Can I ask why?”
“It was never said by my parents as anything but horribly. When I wasn’t doing what they wanted and especially when my mother was upset at me, which was all the time. When I was moving around the country after leaving home, instead of going to college, I used Ev. I didn’t really like it either. It was better than Evan. I was supposed to be a boy, and the name picked out for me wasn’t changed when I was born.”
“You seem…settled in your skin,” Taylor said.
Buck shrugged. She looked at the menu, not wanting to look at Taylor. There were a few options that sounded good. The steak with veg was the best option of what was there. The rub on the steak sounded really good.
“No, no, don’t do that. Look, you know a lot about me. As much as I am willing to tell you. There are other things that I won’t want to talk about until we are more settled. Parts of my past that no one knows. You have the right to keep things as well, but I just want you to know I see the differences. I see you are more settled.”
“I had a lot happen over the last while. I am not ready to talk all about it with you. I’m not worried you would use it for a news report, but I just want to play it close to the vest for a little while. I’m in therapy for what happened and see my therapist weekly.”
“You told me last time that therapy wasn’t for you.”
“No, it wasn’t back then, but COVID really changed that, especially the things that came after.”
“That’s good. Therapy shot up for a lot of people being isolated.”
Buck nodded. She laid the menu down and picked up the device to see about ordering everything she wanted. “I’m not big on the appetizers on the menu. Was there one you wanted?”
“Not really. I ordered a bottle of wine that should go with anything we get. I hope that’s okay. When we order our drinks, it’ll be brought to us to minimize the times the waiter is in here.”
“Sounds good.” Buck finished with her food and handed the device over.
Taylor took her time entering in her food into it. There were many places to ensure that allergies and other food prep were followed to what was needed for each person.
Chris would love this place, and it would be great to get him out of the house. Buck would make sure to bring them here as soon as they could get a spot in.
“So, Buck, tell me all about what you have been doing since we last saw each other.”
Buck smiled and covered it a little by taking a sip of her water.
“Here comes trouble,” Athena called out.
Buck looked from where she was getting ready to do another set of weight lifting. Eddie was ready to spot when she lifted the bar up and off the rest.
“Who?” Eddie asked.
Buck rolled her eyes and focused on Eddie. She moved her grip on the bar and lifted it up. She got a few reps in before realizing that while Eddie was there to catch the weights if needed, his eyes were elsewhere. She wondered if the woman that Athena didn’t like was standing there so Eddie could see her. Buck finished out her reps before she settled the bar back in place.
“Well, that’s all kinds of hot,” Taylor said.
“Miss Kelly, please do not hit on my firefighters,” Bobby said.
“I’m sorry, Captain Nash, but I can hit on Buck if I want to.”
Buck sat up and waited to see what reaction Bobby had to that.
“At least she’s not also hitting on me this time.” Eddie was laughing as he said it.
Bobby looked like he had no idea what was going on.
“I brought lunch,” Taylor said.
“And me,” Chris said a few seconds later.
Buck looked over to the side to see Chris there.
“Where was he?” Bobby asked.
“He came in and went around the ambulance to look at something else. I was waiting for one of Eddie’s family to come in next.”
“No, no, today is my day with Taylor. Pepa and Abuela are having a day doing adult stuff, and I didn’t want to go, so Bucky called Taylor, and she’s watching me. I’ll get dropped off at Pepa’s tonight.”
“Carla had an emergency to do with helping cover for a co-worker who had a family emergency. Pepa was going to take him, but he wanted Taylor,” Eddie said. He moved around the bench and sat down behind Buck when she scooted to make room for him.
Chris came around the equipment with care and laughed as Buck held out her arms. “You are sweaty. No.”
Taylor came up behind Chris, and he leaned back into her. It was a good look on them.
“I didn’t know you were dating anyone,” Bobby said.
“We are taking it slow. Getting to know each other well. I was injured that one time, the drunk who punched me because I wouldn’t let him touch my boobs. I needed someone to stay with me, and no one could, so Taylor did. Carla brought Chris home, and we had a good night.”
“I like Taylor. She makes my Bucky happy.”
Buck looked at Bobby to see how he looked like he wasn’t that happy about that. Taylor and Bobby had put their stuff behind them. Taylor would probably never be Bobby’s favorite person, but Bobby also understood stupid mistakes and letting the search for something get ahead of morals a little.
“So that’s why you’ve been so different,” Hen said.
“I have been different, but it’s not just her. It’s therapy and accepting that no matter what, I don’t need to seek my parents’ approval,” Buck said.
“That’s a lot different than what you were saying before,” Makepeace said.
“Well, therapy fixed me of that.”
Makepeace walked over, carefully picking up Chris and settling the boy in his lap on the second weight lifting bench. “So you like Taylor?”
“I do. She’s good at talking Bucky into giving me ice cream.”
“Ah, that is good. So why did you two come over?”
“We were out shopping, and we got hungry and were close to here, so I figured I would pick up lunch for the four of us.”
“Where is it?”
“In the Jeep. Chris and I are riding in style today.”
Buck laughed. That meant Taylor had taken all of the pieces off that could come off. Chris’ seat in the back seat of the Jeep stopped him from moving, so it was safe to have the doors off. The Jeep was just used for around town moving around. Eddie’s truck was used for anything that was weird terrain or long distance.
“Go and eat,” Bobby said. He still looked like he wasn’t sure what was going on, but he wasn’t willing to get into things.
“Hey, Mister Makepeace, Bucky said your middle name is Vasa. What does it mean?”
“It means sea in my mother’s language of Samoan.”
“Oh, that’s cool. Do you know much Samoan?”
“I know it just as well as I do English.”
“He’s known to cuss in it,” Chim said.
Buck rolled her eyes and waited for Eddie’s hand to drop from her shoulder before she walked over to help Chris down from Makepeace’s lap. “Let’s go and eat.”
“Buck, we can update your paperwork whenever you want,” Bobby called out.
Buck looked back at him, and she cocked her head to the side, staring at him. “Why?”
“You don’t want her to be told?”
“Eddie is still the person making all of those decisions, and if we are both out of commission, it’s Pepa. They will make sure she knows. I don’t think anyone here would keep her out of the loop if I am injured.”
“Well, not. I guess I just assumed that you would update to have her be the one to make that decision.”
“Oh, no. I don’t want that. Not right now, maybe not ever. Eddie knows what Buck wants more than I do. It’s best to stay right where it is. I know that if it was drastic, Eddie would make the best decision.”
Buck looked at Taylor to see her looking at Eddie. She hoped she never had to have either of them make a decision like that. She wanted to be with both of them and Chris for the rest of her life. She just had to wait for Taylor to finish getting there.
I write fanfiction for fun. It’s a hobby and a stress relief. I refuse to stress over my writing. What you see is what you get. Errors, plot holes, and all. Thank you for reading my story!
6 thoughts on “Just One Thing Missing”
I love how you explore so many different ways for people to find their happiness.
Thank you for being open to possibilities
Lovely story. Thank you for sharing.
I love seeing all of the different ways you explore the relationships with this group. Even as a female, Buck and Eddie just aren’t right for a romantic pair, but they are a very tight-knit family. I like that Taylor sees that and how important they are to Buck. Thanks for sharing!
Love this. I really enjoyed how you handled both Eddie and Buck’s friendship and Buck’s relationship with Taylor. ❤ ❤ ❤
I love the scene where Eddie does Buck’s eyeliner. I had a male friend in high school who would do my eyebrows. He always got them perfectly shaped and even. Miss him.