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06 March 2008 @ 11:27 pm
Fic, Lost: A Theory is not a Matter of Fact (Desmond/Daniel), R, for philosophy_20  
Uhm, okay, I'm a masochist. This thing has been eating my brain for a week but of course I'm one for complicated things and while I could have gone with Des' POV with which I'm waaaay more comfortable, I go with Dan. Which was a nut much more tough to crack than I thought, but I'll spare all the meta stuff that came to me while doing this. Possibly a lot of physics mistakes because I can't deal with it and time-travel theories kill my brain. Duh. That's so out of my comfort zone. Did I really do it?

Title: A Theory is not a Matter of Fact
Characters/Pairing: Desmond/Daniel
Rating: Nc17, erm.
Disclaimer: I couldn't ever manage to create a physician. Means Dan is sadly not mine. About Desmond, we all know the drill, don't we?
Word count: 2240
Summary: For philosophy_20 prompt #6, theory. What's in Desmond's eyes, it’s calm; but there’s something underneath it, like the quiet before the storm or, better, a seemingly quiet river which is going burst and flood at any moment. Dan isn’t so sure that the banks are going to hold from long and thinks that well, he definitely doesn’t understand people and Desmond Hume most of all.
Spoilers: If you didn't see 4x05, this doesn't make any sense.
A/N: Hoping I'm not jumping the shark with this one. I'm definitely up for concrit.

To Daniel Faraday, there is a very sensible difference between knowing and understanding.

Knowing something is a matter; understanding it is a whole other one and while he’s kind of good at the first, because there are quite a lot of things Dan knows, he isn’t at the second. There are just two things that Dan really understands completely, without reserve, without any doubt.

Which would be maths and physics.

Now, maths is a thing and physics is another, but well, he won’t go into explaining the difference because he has long given up on trying to explain them; you understand them, or you don’t. And in this case, there’s really nothing you can do about it.

Maths and physics doesn’t include the actual notion of people.

Dan knows people, of course. He isn’t that much of an outcast not to know people. He can recognize a type in front of him; he gets what his students think in the blink of an eye, when it’s related to a subject lesson, of course; he has also learned to decide whether someone is a good person or an asshole with a few observations in social occasions. Alright, most of Dan’s social occasions consist in congresses or in reunion of the Physics department, but that’s really not the point. Knowing people, is a matter.

Understanding people, on the other hand, is something completely beyond him and Daniel has made peace with it even before trying to fight it. He doesn’t really understand the reasons behind the behavior of ninety nine per cent of the people he knows and most of the time he rarely understands his own reasons. It really has never been an issue for him. He knows it, he deals with it, he does physics. He doesn’t do relationships. He does some kind of friendships, sure, but nothing really ordinary.

This said, he thinks that he has understood something of the man in front of him.

Not all, of course. That’d be impossible. But something.

Which is enough to make him actually rephrase what he was going to say bluntly.

As soon as... Desmond Hume or whatever he’s called crashes him against the blackboard, Dan can see, looking him straight in the eyes, that he’s scared to death. And in his place, well, in his place he couldn’t really blame him.

That’s why he doesn’t tell him that the Constant is a theory.

Because, you see, another thing that people usually don’t grasp about the difference between maths and physics is that while maths is something sure, something stable, something that has one solution in most cases and that doesn’t give you too many ways out, physics is mostly a theory, in every sense of the word. It’s nothing you can really demonstrate. It’s nothing you can’t be sure of until you prove it and well, you can’t be sure of it even if you do prove it sometimes, for that matter. But he figures that telling Hume, Desmond, yes, Desmond, he’s got to remember the name, that whatever you’re going to say might as well be wrong would mean to crush the guy down and if he gets nervous again... well, you get the point, don’t you?

So Dan does what physicians usually do and presents it as a matter of fact. Not a theory.

Sure, it’s probable enough and Dan could say that it’s right with a good approximation, but point is, he’s never going to be sure until he experiences it. But well, if he doesn’t give Desmond at least that, he’s surely going to end up as poor Eloise did and since he figured it out, isn’t it worth a try?

“Something familiar in both times. All this, see this is variables, it's random, it's chaotic. Every equation needs stability, something known. It's called a constant. Desmond, you have no constant. When you go to the future, nothing there is familiar. So if you want to stop this, then you need to find something there...something that you really, really care about....that also exists back here, in 1996.”

“This constant.. can it be a person?”

“Yeah, maybe. But you have to make some kind of contact. Didn't you say you were off on a boat, in the middle of nowhere?”

Desmond doesn’t answer him and starts dialing a number. Well, if he can call his constant, good for him, Dan thinks. This is so completely crazy, but then again, this guy has probably made him earn a good place in the next congress he’s going to be invited, which isn’t bad at all, if not for the fact that Dan usually hates congresses because there are too much people, though at least there are people who understand what the heck he’s saying. Which is a relief, once in a while, right?

He’s thrown out of his loop of thoughts when Desmond slams the phone.


“She changed her bloody number.”

“Well, excuse me, but this person won’t make a good constant if you don’t even have the number. Or, uhm, I think so.”

Desmond looks at him and Dan finds himself suddenly scared. It’s not enraged like before.

No, what's in Desmond's eyes, it’s calm; but there’s something underneath it, like the quiet before the storm or, better, a seemingly quiet river which is going to burst and flood at any moment. Dan isn’t so sure that the banks are going to hold from long and thinks that well, he definitely doesn’t understand people and Desmond Hume most of all.

“You don’t know nothin’ about her, brother.”

“No, I don’t.”, he agrees without too much regret.

“I guess there are lots of things you don’t know about, yeah?”

“Well, I’m.. I’m fine with what I know, thanks.”

“Good for you. It’s always a good thing to be fine for what I know. But don’t you worry, brother, she’ll be my constant even if I don’t have her number. I guess you don’t get that, do you?”

“No, I don’t. Sorry but I really don’t.”

“You know what, brother? I think you could use knowin’, for a change.”

Not understanding people, to Daniel, means also not understanding a good deal of relationships. That’s why Dan doesn’t do relationships and hasn’t done any since a long time. Quite a long time, yeah, actually.

He doesn’t know what’s with him. Wasn’t that clear that much of the reasons for which he doesn’t get people comes from not getting himself? Probably yes. Whatever.

He should push Desmond away, but he knows better because one has to be an idiot not to see that Dan hasn’t got a chance against him in a physical fight.

Not that he wants to fight. Fights are actually the one thing that Dan doesn’t do at all, kinda, even less than relationships. But he shouldn’t be nowhere near okay with it and he shouldn’t actually think that it isn’t bad.

Because when you’re slammed up against your blackboard, a cloud of chalk rising behind you and probably getting in your hair, on your shirt and trousers and mostly everywhere, pressed up between the hard surface and Desmond’s body shouldn’t actually be not that bad. Though in fact, it’s pretty much alright.

It should be the worst thing ever, except that Dan figures it isn’t.

Desmond isn’t gentle, doesn’t wait, doesn’t really care whether Dan does something or doesn’t do anything; as soon as he was pressed there, Desmond was already claiming access to Dan’s mouth and Desmond’s hands were pulling on his hair, bringing him closer.

Dan lets him, parts his lips and actually reciprocates the kiss, even if Desmond is really doing all the job. Desmond’s lips are rough and dry against Dan’s, his movements are harsh and demanding, the pulling on his hair hurts a bit, but Dan finds himself actually liking it to an extent, even if he doesn’t know what the hell he should do and so limits himself to grip the leather covering Desmond’s shoulders.

Gripping is not so easy though, especially when a hand is pulling on your tie, letting it loose, and your hands are getting sweaty to begin with.

Dan can just try to get the jacket off Desmond’s shoulders because well, that’s what he guesses he’s supposed to do, but Desmond thinks better and throws it away before Dan can even get a sleeve out. The tie reaches the jacket on the ground and Dan can only think that it’s good he chose a white shirt, since the chalk it’s not going to show up.

That’s another reason for not doing relationships, Dan thinks, because he knows that his mind always drifts away. Hell, he’s thinking about the chalk on his clothes when Desmond’s teeth are lightly brushing the skin on his neck and his trousers are suddenly tight, what about it?

It had happened with the last two girls he had been with, too. Because well, at that time he still was a student but he already had decided that physics was his field and they always complained that he never thought about what he was supposed to when he was with them. They were right, nothing to say about it.

Anyway, here he is, digressing again.

He doesn’t know what the heck of a point Desmond wants to prove with this, truth to be told, but as soon as his belt lands on the floor he guesses that he could at least do something, since he hasn’t quite moved a finger since this whole thing started. Right, he didn’t have a choice in the matter, true enough, but that isn’t the point, since he has long decided that he’s liking it.

Why, well, the fact that it’s been months, maybe years, whatever, since he actually had sex, doesn’t actually mean he isn’t enjoying this.

His hands sneak under Desmond’s shirt, his fingers following the lines on his back, brushing it; it’s broad and Desmond’s skin is warm and strangely soft. Dan likes this sensation, quite much; then Desmond is yanking his trousers down and he takes Dan in his hand, while he gets even closer, hips thrusting against his own; Dan gets Desmond’s jeans open somewhat and he registers Desmond releasing a small breath when he does.

Dan can’t help noticing that Desmond is being very quiet about this; he only lets small and ragged breaths out, not even a moan, while Dan has to say that he has definitely been moaning up to now, especially since Desmond is giving fast, hard, firm strokes and suddenly his mind isn’t drifting anywhere but it’s here and now.

The air he’s breathing is the same Desmond is, hot and seemingly heavy with tension; he can feel electricity sparkles snapping and he tries not to think at what reaction they could be generating right now.

One hand grabs Desmond’s neck, short hair slipping through his fingers, while Desmond’s free hand leaves his back and threads in his. As soon as there’s enough space, Dan’s other hand goes down to Desmond’s erection, their hips are dangerously close again, thrusting again a bit more fiercely, air impossibly hot. Dan’s lips brush Desmond’s again, he shivers because it sent electricity down his spine and through all his muscles and before he can wonder which kind of electricity it is he’s coming against Desmond’s hand, hard and fast and it’s dazzling enough for him not to think about absolutely anything else.

He doesn’t even register Desmond following him slightly after; he only realizes is when a pack of tissues hit his head and he finds Desmond with his back turned to him, seemingly cleaning himself up. Dan kneels, takes a tissue and follows the example; when Desmond turns, his cheeks are just a little bit flushed and he looks slightly more relaxed than before, but really not much. He’s smirking, though, and Dan can’t guess why he should.

“You got yourself an idea, yeah?”, he asks, his voice low and calm.

“Quite, yeah.”, Dan answers taking his belt and his tie from the floor. Desmond shakes his head and gets nearer.

“That, brother, isn’t even a quarter of what I have with her. That’s why she’s my constant, even if I don’t have her number. Yet.”

Desmond gets the jacket, turns and leaves, closing the door much more carefully than Dan would have thought; he lets out a breath and doesn’t even try to rationalize the situation because well, he may be good at rationalizing theorems but he isn’t any good at it with behaviors.

Anyway, he still doesn’t know whether his theory is going to work.

But if he has met Desmond now and he has forgot in the future...

Dan suddenly feels too tired to think about this, too. But there’s one thing he thinks could turn handy, in case he ends up messing with that theory again.

He takes his journal and gets the first blank page. As soon as his hand stops shaking, he takes a pen and writes, cheap blue ink glossing over the white paper.

If anything goes wrong, Desmond Hume will be my constant.

He underlines my for emphasis, or something like that; then closes the journal, puts it back in its place and watches Desmond, who has now shown up in the courtyard, leave, wondering exactly how far he’s got to go and how fast he is running.


feeling: nervousnervous
on rotation: poor pitiful me - warren zevon
maewe: locke>u by atomic applesmaewe on March 6th, 2008 10:58 pm (UTC)
SO that's what REALLY HAPPENED!!

léasdélakslékd ! è stupenda. Non cesso mai di stupirmi di quanto in fretta Dan sia entrato nelle grazie del fandom.
the female ghost of tom joad: lost faraday *g*janie_tangerine on March 6th, 2008 11:01 pm (UTC)
Uh grazie! Non so davvero cosa pensarne di questa roba quindi è un sollievo ♥

E lui! Dan! Amore! Giuro, non ci speravo che della gente nuova mi piacesse così tanto ma.. ma... *muore*

Anche se da scrivere è un... quando scrivo qualcuno voglio capire da dove viene e quell'uomo non solo è un fisico quindi non ci prendiamo sulle basi, ma non è proprio l'ideale per pornare allegramente XD contenta che sia piaciuta *_*
(no subject) - reverse010 on March 15th, 2008 03:27 am (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
the female ghost of tom joad: lost desmond GUHjanie_tangerine on March 6th, 2008 11:30 pm (UTC)
I mean, I was surprised to be the first because there was a lot of talking but however, you have to break the ice. Right? ;)

Thank you, definitely glad that you liked it and even happier if it made your day! ♥
(Deleted comment)
the female ghost of tom joad: lost faraday *g*janie_tangerine on March 7th, 2008 07:07 am (UTC)
Thank you so much! You don't know how I'm happy to know that I got Dan right, I knew he wasn't going to be easy but he was definitely much harder than I'd have thought. The constant ending? Oh, that was the cutest thing. I mean, one needed an explanation, right? I'm so really glad you liked this one (my guilty pleasures strike again XDD), thank you so much for reading again! ♥

[and the episode is downloading. Get ready for J/J soon, I need to get back on normal couples for a while. Erm ;)]
cate: Daniel Faraday - Lostenamors on March 7th, 2008 12:16 am (UTC)
Wow! This is fantastic; I'm blown away. I can imagine that Dan was a challenge to write, but you pulled it off brilliantly. Your story just makes so much sense in the context of the show and you paint the characters in a way that's really true to themselves.

Great work! :)
the female ghost of tom joad: lost faradayjanie_tangerine on March 7th, 2008 07:03 am (UTC)
Oh thank you! That's definitely good to hear, I had a load of problems with Dan because when I write someone I like to see where they come from and I research when I need it, but given my total helplessness with maths and physics I didn't even try and so I was venturing in dark territory, so to speak ;) I'm really so glad you liked it, thank you so much for reading! And yeah, after that Desmond is my constant... *makes shifty eyes*
kind of an indoor girl: desmondglycerineclown on March 7th, 2008 12:55 am (UTC)
That, brother, isn’t even a quarter of what I have with her...

I was like :O Desmondwtf!!

hahah, i was skeptical about the pairing but this worked nicely :)
the female ghost of tom joad: lost desmond GUHjanie_tangerine on March 7th, 2008 07:00 am (UTC)
LOL thanks, I was skeptical about the fic myself (I have to say Des/Sayid was a way more enjoyable pairing to write if you get my drill XD) but I'm glad it worked for you, thanks for reading! ♥
cherry pie: Quotemorlockiness on March 7th, 2008 01:48 am (UTC)
Desmond may love Penny, but he apparently has subconcsious desires for painstakingly-adorable, nerdy boys. Good to know!
the female ghost of tom joad: approvedjanie_tangerine on March 7th, 2008 06:59 am (UTC)
Hasn't he? I totally have, too. Okay, for him and for nerdy boys, but whatever. I'll skip on it ;) thanks for reading!
Robyn: lostslashmagickaldreamer on March 7th, 2008 02:51 am (UTC)
I would like to profess my undying love for you.

Constant totally opened the doors for (plausible) Daniel/Desmond fic, and yours is the first I've seen. Hopefully the first of many.

Are you planning on posting this over at dansmond? I see you're a member there.
the female ghost of tom joad: lost sawyer & juliet partner swapjanie_tangerine on March 7th, 2008 06:46 am (UTC)
And I'd absolutely be glad to accept it! *accepts love*

I thought there'd be someone else going at it before I did but alas, I'm glad I've broken the ice and that you liked it ;)

And I'll sure post it there, yesterday night I was sleeping on the keyboard and didn't but I plan on it. And of course I'll love to read someone else's.. ;)
Kate: Lost - Red Danielkatie821 on March 7th, 2008 05:32 am (UTC)
Oh, I love this!! Desmond/Daniel is my new favorite slash! Wonderful job ^_^

Edited at 2008-03-07 05:32 am (UTC)
the female ghost of tom joad: lost faraday *g*janie_tangerine on March 7th, 2008 06:58 am (UTC)
Thanks! I loved the potential of it and figured that I could give it a go ;) glad you liked it!
mkfsdjmrslinus17 on March 7th, 2008 10:19 am (UTC)
Aah! I loved this so much. Poor Dan, all confused and disorientated when its not about physics. Anyway, thank you!
the female ghost of tom joad: lost eloisejanie_tangerine on March 7th, 2008 10:23 am (UTC)
Thank you, so very glad you liked it! And hee, Dan is totally squishable and disoriented. Even if whatever issues he has, they are worst on island I think, while in that setting he seemed more, like, grounded. Which is why I set it in that point because how I was gonna deal with it else, IDK ;) thanks again for reading! ♥
weehobbit: LOST -- dan - omg!weehobbit on March 7th, 2008 05:34 pm (UTC)
Eee! Finally a Desmond/Daniel fic!! :D I really like how you seem to get inside Dan's head. And the whole throwing him against the chalkboard in the episode was so hot and this was... mmmm. Thanks for sharing :)
the female ghost of tom joad: lost faraday *g*janie_tangerine on March 7th, 2008 06:10 pm (UTC)
LOL I sincerely would have thought someone would do it before me! But hey, breaking the ice is breaking the ice, right? ;)

You don't know how much it means to me that you liked how I got into Dan's head because since what he's (according to me lol) good at is what I fail most at I was sure I'd make a mess, so it's great to know that he was IC. The throwing against the blackboard thing was totally hot, I can only agree. Thanks so much for reading, I'm really happy that you liked it! ♥
Cleo: get it backcleuchi on March 8th, 2008 12:09 am (UTC)
LOVED IT. Really, really, really loved it. Your Dan voice -OMG he's just so sexy ♥- was wonderful in here, I could really see him saying all that stuff about digressing. It made me scream like the fangirl I actually am, and made my day also :)
Although the kiss appeared a bit unexpectedly, the fic was brilliant ♥
the female ghost of tom joad: lost faradayjanie_tangerine on March 8th, 2008 07:22 am (UTC)
Yay, thank you! Wow it's so good to hear my trip inside Dan's head had good results, I had some problems with it mainly because me and him haven't really colliding interests, so I'm even more glad that it worked. And I'm a total fangirl for those two, too, no shame in that ;) ♥ thank you!
M: blue velvet dark and stars [lost]_chica02 on March 8th, 2008 02:31 am (UTC)
I loved this! It felt a bit as if it was written by Dan himself--as many others have said, you got his voice spot on.

And the Des/Dan was HOT as hell. I love dominant!Des and submissive!Dan. :D

Excellent job, thanks for sharing!
the female ghost of tom joad: lost faraday *g*janie_tangerine on March 8th, 2008 07:28 am (UTC)
That's so great to hear, especially since he gave me his fair share of trouble, thanks!

LOL those two are totally D/s, I mean, army!Desmond is surely a total dominant while Dan was/is so submissive you can't help loving that guy so it was too good not to play with it ;) thank you so much for reading, I'm so really glad you liked it! ♥
kat_scratches on March 8th, 2008 04:42 am (UTC)
Your Dan -- wow. All I can say, really. That was lovely, and just the right thing to read right before bed (which is where I'm heading) and did I mention, by the way, that I loved this story?
the female ghost of tom joad: lost des personal jesusjanie_tangerine on March 8th, 2008 07:30 am (UTC)
Thank you! Knowing I wrote a good Dan is so good to know, I'm really happy you liked this one. And I hope you got some very nice dreams! ;) Thanks for reading, again! ♥
(no subject) - kat_scratches on March 8th, 2008 02:13 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - janie_tangerine on March 8th, 2008 09:28 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - kat_scratches on March 9th, 2008 12:17 am (UTC) (Expand)
bachlava: Desmondbachlava on March 8th, 2008 10:37 am (UTC)
Oh. My. God.

I don't know whether I'm sorry it took me so long to get around to reading this, or glad that I waited to read it until I had some work taken care of and could give this the time and attention it so richly deserves.

This is - okay, to hell with trying to be original. It's perfect. Daniel's emotional distance from people, his passion for his work, and his distinction between knowing and understanding all capture his character perfectly. The same for Desmond's quiet passion (he would be quiet, wouldn't he?;) and his very genuine insistence that it's still all about Penny - which, for Desmond, I really think it is (without it detracting one iota from his Awesome Slash Potential).

I could keep going on here, but I think the comment would quickly get longer than the fic itself. This is superb work (I especially love the chalkboard detail), and I'm going to be squeeing for about a month. You rock.
the female ghost of tom joad: lost desmond GUHjanie_tangerine on March 8th, 2008 11:10 am (UTC)
it's still all about Penny - which, for Desmond, I really think it is (without it detracting one iota from his Awesome Slash Potential).

Glad that you see it! Seriously, IDK what it is that I could slash him with most of the people there while I'm sure that the guy is all about Penny, but I'm glad I'm not the only one with that idea. Anyway, I'm not meta-ing Desmond's shipping potential right now or I'll end next month ;)

Desmond definitely would be quiet, it's just in the guy's blood I think; while I'll say hell with not being repetitive in comments but I'm so really glad that Dan worked for you, because while I can see how one can be passionate about what he does and I can get his detachment, I could never, ever get physics in any way and I was freaking out for any false steps with that.

The chalkboard, I had to put in. I mean, Christ, it was so bluntly perfect for a setting that I had to. I'm so really glad you liked this one so much, hearing it really makes me all fuzzy ;) thank you! ♥
elliotsmelliot: des shoeelliotsmelliot on March 8th, 2008 08:42 pm (UTC)
After The Constant it will be very hard for me to imagine Desmond with anyone but Penny, especially during his fractured time travel/memory loss crisis. (Okay, I do allow Sayid and Des to comfort each other as they see fit...) But you successfully created an alternative reading of this scene that I do buy completely.

I enjoyed your Dan POV. You captured his awkwardness with loving attention. I'm mainly around academics in the humanities where it is our speciality to understand people, at least our subjects. When it comes to real people, it is less easy. I imagine this can be even more of a problem for scientists. Yet Dan pulls it together enough to keep everything from falling apart here.

Wow – Aggressive!Desmond is kind of shocking because despite his constant moments of raging madness, I always perceive him as gentle. But given this situation, I could totally see him being the dominant one, out of panic, desire and desire for something to hold onto.

Poor Dan, I think he will lose the battle of the constants in the long run but he has hopefully found a way to anchor him and Desmond in the present.

I have totally enjoyed your trifecta of Des pairings arising from The Constant. This story has made me confident to move forward with my Jack/Penny story.
the female ghost of tom joad: lost desmond GUHjanie_tangerine on March 8th, 2008 08:56 pm (UTC)
That'd be hard for me, too. I mean, I could write him with someone else if set before the call when he still couldn't be sure that she's searching for him or something like that, but after that phone call, I'd be too for only allowing Sayid consolation and such. But, that's really great knowing this that you bought this one.

Dan was, like, my half writing suicide. Because apart from the fact that me and physics have the chemistry that, let's say, Nikki and Jack had (aka: none), I think that between his Constant time and his Island time there were some remarkable changes. I mean, Island!Dan seems to me a lot more twitchy and awkward than Constant!Dan even if the seeds were there, too, so I was trying to balance the two aspects and it's good to hear it worked.

I also see Des as an extremely gentle person, but I felt allowed to give him the dominant edge if only for when he slammed him against the blackboard the first time because he really was panicking, poor thing.

Dan doesn't have a chance against the Constant with the big C, but at least they are anchored. Who knows, maybe he'll find another one.

And I'm much honored to hear that this gave confidence! I'm totally supportive of the Jack/Penny thing, I loved the premise and I can't wait to see where you're going with it. Of course, I'm most glad my wonder Constant trio worked, that episode completely ate my mind. Which is good, I have to say ;)