#the buckley parents
Mags & Phil: “You’re not a mother yet you wouldn’t understand “
Maddie thinking about how she raised Buck:
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Really proud of us as a fandom for collectively deciding that even if Buck has chosen to forgive his parents, Eddie has not.
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3x03 | 4x04
inspired by this post written by @matan4il :)
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HOLD UP the buckley parents didn't come out when buck almost died multiple times but they're gonna show up to elaborate on a secret and chide buck for going to therapy. I am going to commit homocide.
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Triggers are a funny thing. They aren’t always logical and obvious. They work in their own mysterious ways, much how like healing isn’t linear.
Buck knows. He has his own share of trauma. After the bombing, Buck was weary of loud noises—anxiously waiting for them to happen so he could freak out. But he hadn’t taken into consideration the smell of gasoline instead. A car can backfire and Buck doesn’t even register the noise. But he has a panic attack every time he has to go to the gas station to fill up his jeep. Water isn’t a trigger. Salt is. The smell of it, the taste of it. Being sprayed with water by surprised? No big deal. Eating mashed potato that are too salty? Buck has to stand and lock himself in the bathroom before anyone notices him struggling.
Which is why Buck finds himself hesitating in front of grocery stores. It’s stupid, he thinks, that he has a trigger for Eddie that isn’t Eddie himself, but grocery stores. Especially the one close to the station. When they drive by, Buck looks to the other side of the street. When they stop at the store, Buck always delegates what he wants to the others so he doesn’t have to go in. And while the worst is the actual grocery the incident occurred, it doesn’t stop him from being triggered by all grocery stores. Buck doesn’t even shop anymore, he has things delivered.
And Buck can’t even put the entire blame on Eddie.
Because the grocery store trigger might be because of their fight, but the fight, Eddie’s words, were a trigger for Buck’s childhood.
Especially when it concerns his ADHD. It’s not new, to hear that he’s selfish or exhausting. Because his parents were always exhausted, the teachers always frustrated. It wasn’t until a caring teacher kept tabs and asked questions that she pushed for Buck to be tested.
The diagnosis was a balm for Buck, he had a name and resources to look into for what made him, him. But it was also a warzone with his parents who couldn’t believe Buck had even more “defects.” The diagnosis made the Buckleys more resentful and neglectful. While Buck wasn’t hit, he was pinched a lot, pushed and pulled with strong grips, etc. The ADHD was referenced a lot by his parents as the source of everything wrong with Buck. It was always Buck’s fault, they said. It was him who made them tired, and irritable, and angry. It was always him that was the problem.
So, in one moment of anger, Eddie snowballed Buck to a time when he was four, and twelve, and fifteen, and eighteen, and when Buck left Pennsylvania and vowed to never tell anyone he was neurodivergent.
Of course, Eddie takes notice. Because when is he not paying attention to Buck.
No need to claim a prompt. If written on AO3, please gift it to me. On tumblr, tag me. I have the same name on both websites.
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Bobby: Okay, repeate after me. If I try my best but I don't succeed
Buck: If I try my best but I don't succeed
Bobby: it's okay to try again.
Buck: I'm trash and a fraud who doesn't deserve the very air that I breathe.
Bobby: No! Where in Oblivion did you learn that?
Buck: Probably somewhere in my childhood, I don't know...
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Buck: The best life hack that I learned was when ordering a steak to have them list the options. So you can be told 'Well done'.
Bobby: Are you okay?
Eddie: Do y- can I hug you?
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Athena: hey Bobby, any idea where Maddie and Buck’s parents are staying while they’re in town?
Bobby: yeah, I think they’re at that hotel over on hampshire street, why?
Athena: oh no reason, just thought I might stop over there and have a little chat with them about how they’re treating their children
Bobby: I’ll get my keys
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If there is one thing in life I would like to accomplish it would be to yeet the Buckley parents into the outer space
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Would u rather see a dinner with madney, buddie and the Buckley parents or a dinner with buddie, the Buckley parents and the Diaz parents ??
This was a hard one because I really don’t know what I would prefer at first. But now that I’m thinking, I’m definitely interested in seeing a Buddie with both sets of parents at dinner together. Like there’s just so much that can possibly go down in that dinner that I believe we all would love to see. We know how protective Buck and Eddie are of one another and how they have horrible relationships with their parents. So imagine them all sitting down together. The second the Buckley’s say something remotely negative to Buck, I believe Eddie will definitely say something in defense. I wanna see Eddie get upset and pissed off at the Buckley’s so bad because Buck is one of the most kind-hearted people he’s ever know who’s filled with love to the brim.
Or imagine the Diaz’s find out they’re dating and they’re not ok with it. Then on top of that, they find out about the will and start up an argument. I want Buck to go into protective mode and defend Eddie and Christopher. I want to see him hulk out in a sense for his boys because as long as Buck is there, no one has the right to talk about his partner like that because Eddie is an exceptional father. I need all the angst that will come from this dinner tbh. We can get so much goodness if we have a dinner with the parents.
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Prompt: Just somehow, someway Athena calls the Buckley parents dumbasses to their faces like they rightly deserve.
This was so much fun to write anon! Your prompt gave me a wicked little giggle 😆 Hope you enjoy what I came up with 💛
Athena Vs. The Buckley’s
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pleeeease tell me about the buckley parents my nemeses.
It's a very empty document, but it's mostly snippets in a hospital waiting room (either Mrs Buckley or Maddie giving birth since it was written pre-that) ... I posted the better part from this WIP [ here ] a few months ago but here's another snippet :) but in all seriousness this is going nowhere fast haha
“You know, we booked plane tickets,” Buck’s father says without looking up at his son, staring instead at the random pamphlet he picked up earlier to mindlessly flick through while they waited for news.
“What?” Buck frowns in confusion. “I thought last time you said the RV was the safest way to travel?”
“Not now,” Philip amends. “Back when…” He sighs. He puts the pamphlet down as though it had personally offended him. He doesn't look up. “Your sister called us about your accident. She left a message about… about the firetruck bombing.”
Buck sucks in a breath. He hadn’t known that. Although he shouldn’t really be surprised. He did something similar when Doug had died, figuring if he took the first step and cut his parents off at the pass, it would ease the grief they’d eventually bring with them further down the line. Maddie must have figured much of the same thing.
“There had been a piece on the news, but they didn’t give a name…and they hadn’t shown… But Maddie called, and I booked the first flight I could, and when I told your mother she couldn’t handle it.”
“So you just pretended like it never happened.”
“Buck.” He stresses, demonstrating a remarkable amount of restraint considering how dog-tired he was. Both literally and figuratively. He hadn’t slept since the end of his last shift, and frankly he’s had enough conversations like this to last a lifetime.
“You never called us to let us know—” Philip starts to say, already on the defensive, already trying to claw it back.
“And you never called full-stop.”
💌ask me about my WIPs 💌
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Buck saying that Eddie needs a nickname because the rest of the team all have nicknames/Buck’s parents’ aversion to nicknames - requested by @markonasurface
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Me @ Maddie & Buck:
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Angsty Prompt: Buck and Maddie never talk about their parents. It's because their parents are like super rich and never had time for them. Buck gets invited to a BIG FANCY PARTY and the team finds out. The next few weeks are filled with jokes like "Can you buy me a house rich boy?" and things like that. Buck gets really upset thinking that's all they care about. The team showing and telling him that he is more than that.
Claimed by Red💋
Two Sides (Of The Same Coin)
Buck was ready to drop. Between the past month being filled with training and firefighting, he hadn’t had much time to himself or the Diaz boys. Buck dragged himself through the bay doors, straight from his reservist training for the SEALs because he was a glutton for punishment and hadn’t thought to ask for the day off.
Buck got dressed quickly, walking quickly up the stairs to the loft. “Running late today, Buckley,” Chim asked.
Buck rolled his eyes, flipping Chim the bird. Chim had no idea why he was late and he honestly shouldn’t be as smug about it as he is. “Nice of you to join us,” Bobby teased lightly.
“Always happy to be here, Cap,” Buck sassed.
Taking a seat next to Eddie, the man placed a hand lightly on his knee. It was their silent communication asking if the other was alright. Buck nodded lightly. “Hey, Buck. You got a fancy looking letter,” Hen called as she came in with the mail. “Got a hot date,” she asked.
Buck stood up slowly, muscles aching as he walked over to Hen. “No. Who’s it from?”
Hen turned the letter over, “uh, Margaret and Phillip Buckley...oh, are those your parents,” a light went off in Hen’s eyes as Buck hurried the rest of the way over to her.
“Give me that-”
The letter got tossed to Chim who immediately opened it as Buck rushed towards him. “We would formally like to-”
The letter was passed back to Hen before Buck could get to Chim, “-invite you to the Annual Buckley Gala this 5th of February-”
“-at the Buckley Estate in Los Angeles, California. All proceeds will go to-”
Buck snatched the letter from Chim, face red from both embarrassment and exhaustion. “Now that I think about it, Maddie got a letter like that before I left today. Same envelope, at least.”
“Sounds like your family is rich, Mr. Evan Buckley,” Hen wiggled her eyebrows.
“Shut it, both of you,” Buck threatened.
Hen and Chim shared a look and that is how Buck’s day was filled with rich jokes and uncomfortable questions from the two. By the time Buck could head home, he was far more exhausted than he’d ever been. Picking up his phone as he sat in his Jeep, Buck dialed Maddie’s number. She picked up in three rings. Without giving her a chance to speak, Buck was starting, “Chim and everyone knows about Mom and Dad. I got a letter today at the station and they read it. It was inviting me to the stupid gala they hold every year. Apparently it’s in LA this year.”
It was quiet for a moment, “yeah, I got a letter too. I just threw it out.” She sighed, “thanks for telling me. Are you-”
“No, I’m not going to their fucking party. That’s pretty much all they cared about when we were kids,” Buck rolled his eyes.
“Why did they send it to the station?”
“I never gave them my current address. I didn’t want any contact with them.”
“I’m sorry, Evan,” she sighed.
“Me too, the rich jokes just kept coming today.”
“I’ll talk to Howie.”
“Don’t worry about it. No harm.”
Three Weeks Later
Buck had been pulled in for a last minute training session for the reservists, really pushing his limits. Buck was just so tired. “Buck, you have visitors,” Bobby called from the railing.
“Changing,” he replied. “Be up soon!”
There was a few seconds of silence before he heard the voices of two people he had wanted to put in his past. “It’s not nice to keep your guests waiting, Evan,” his mother called.
Buck straightened and turned to look at his parents. Why were they here? “What, uh, what are you doing here,” he asked as he noticed his coworkers standing at the railing of the loft.
“You never RSVP’d for the Gala, we had to make sure you were coming,” his father stated, ever posh in his dry cleaned and freshly pressed suit.
“Maybe I didn’t RSVP because I wasn’t planning on coming,” Buck replied as he turned to get dressed again.
He got his work shirt on before either of his parents spoke again. “Madeline decided she wasn’t coming and we need one of you there considering we’re in the same city as both of our children, it would look bad if at least one of them wasn’t there with us.”
Buck scoffed, turning back to his parents, “maybe you should have thought of that before you chose to focus on your money and parties instead of your children. Now, if you don’t mind, I have a job to do.”
His parents didn’t let him pass and Buck barely held back rolling his eyes at his parents. “The proceeds of the party are going to Veterans who need assistance after coming back from war. Considering your service, I thought you would want to be involved. You could even wear your uniform if you wanted,” his father pressed, “we might even get more donations because of it.”
This was not a conversation he wanted to have in front of his crew. He never wanted his crew to meet his parents. And the thing is, Buck knew he couldn’t say no now that his parents told him the cause they were donating the money to. Buck bit his lip, “one condition to me coming to your Gala...you meet whatever gets donated. If you make $500,000 then you give $500,000 of your own money to the cause.”
Margaret and Phillip shared a look. A small nod from Phillip and Margaret gave him a tight smile, “Of course, Darling. We’ll match the donation.”
Buck ran a hand down his face as his parents turned and walked out of the station. “Fuck,” he muttered to himself.
Buck slowly made his way up the stairs of the firehouse and took a deep breath. “Why do they think you wearing your work uniform will help their charity get more money,” Chim asked as he munched on an apple.
Buck glared at Chim, his eyes telling the man that this was a conversation they weren’t having. Eddie was kind enough not to question him as he handed him a coffee mug. “Firefighting is way different from serving your country across seas, your parents know that, right,” Hen asked.
Buck bit his lip as he walked away from the group. They didn’t know. He’d never told them...it never came up...but it hurt that they assumed that ‘by his service’ meant his time as a firefighter and not actually serving his country...having gone overseas and seen things he’ll never unsee.
Chim snickered, “the posh elites probably won’t know the difference.”
Buck’s cup slammed on the kitchen island, coffee spilling out, but he didn’t care about that. “Are you done,” he snarled.
“Whoa,” he held his hands up, “just a bit of teasing.”
“I’d fucking appreciate it if you stopped. You don’t-” He was cut off by the alarm blaring through the station. He didn’t think he could last the whole shift with Chim an Hen.
Two Weeks Later
Placing his fatigues in the locker, Buck didn’t pay them much mind. He’d get off with just enough time to be fashionably late to his parent’s gala. “You got a fancy suit in there,” Hen asked as she sidled up to him.
Buck sighed. Hen and Chim hadn’t let up much in their teasing. “Something like that,” he stated as he shut the locker.
“I can’t wait until the end of shift. Evan Buckley in a fancy suit...we don’t get to see that much,” she continued.
Much of the afternoon was spent going out on very few calls. That meant there was more time for Chim and Hen to rib him on his night at the ‘fancy smancy gala’. Eventually Eddie stepped in, telling them to back off as Buck’s mood soured more and more.
The last call that the crew went on was a monster, leaving Buck feeling more tired than he had in months. Quickly showering, he began to get ready for the gala. His replacement for the night was already there and ready for the next call, meaning Buck could leave whenever he was ready. Looking at the clock, he was already late to the gala...and Buck thought about just not going...but his parents would make good on their deal. They would match whatever was donated...and Buck wanted to make sure that happened.
Buck got dressed quickly, taking a moment to fix his hair before making sure everything was in place. Grabbing his duffle, Buck was looking to make a speedy exit. “And there he-” Chim cut himself off as he looked at Buck’s attire.
“You-” Hen started.
Buck looked down at the fatigues and back to his crew. He had no time to explain this now. “Yes, I serve my country. Yes this is what I’m wearing to the gala. No, it’s not fake. I’ll see you next shift,” he called out as he hurried out the bay doors.
Three Days Later
Buck had sat in his Jeep longer than intended. He was working up the courage to walk into the station for his next shift. The gala had been more or less a success. A grand total of six million dollars being given to multiple veteran charities. He’d smiled and played the part of the happy son who served his country. He had politely declined numbers of men and women that were in attendance of the party. As soon as he could get out of there, he did. It was only a letter sent to Maddie that let him know how much money had been raised.
Buck finally sighed and pushed himself to go into the station. He gripped his duffle tightly as if it could shield him from the others. Eddie was in the locker room when he came in. Quietly, the man stood up and gave a smile to Buck. He put his arms around Buck’s shoulders and pulled him into a hug, “I’m proud of you.”
Buck gave him a confused look when they pulled apart. “Uh, why?”
“I know you didn’t want to go to that party, but you did to help others who’ve served their country. I’m proud of you.”
Buck blushed, hand going to the back of his neck, “I mean...anyone would have done the same.”
“No, some really wouldn’t have.”
Buck didn’t say anything as they made their way to the kitchen for breakfast. It was quiet for a while before Chim spoke, “I’m sorry for all the teasing I put you through this last month. It got out of hand.”
“We never meant for it to hurt you...seeing your face when you left to go to the gala...I’m sorry that we hurt you,” Hen stated.
Buck cleared his throat. “Nothing to be sorry for. You tease me relentlessly about everything else, why wouldn’t that have been the same?”
“But you told us to stop and we should have.”
Buck shrugged, “maybe. Doesn’t really matter. The past is the past.”
It was quiet again before Hen looked at him hesitantly, “can we-can we ask about…”
Buck stared at his plate of food before nodding. “I enlisted right after I graduated from high school. I wanted to get as far away from Hershey as possible. My parents were never really there for me or Maddie so, it wasn’t like they’d miss me. They only ever really contact me when they need to look good in front of their friends I mean...what family doesn’t look good with a soldier in the family right?” Buck rolled his eyes. “I went through SEAL training, was active for six years before I was put in the reserves. Every month I do one to six training sessions with other reservists. My enlistment ends in another year and I’ll be retired...but if something were to pop up, up until then I could be put back on active duty.”
“Why didn’t you tell us?”
Buck looked Chim directly in the eye and raised an eyebrow, “would you have honestly believed me? If I just told you one day while we were playing pool that I served in the military, would you have believed me? You haven’t taken me seriously since I joined the firehouse.”
“No, everyone thinks I’m some dumb reckless kid that you all have to put up with. You think I’m exhausting and idiotic. Turns out that I’m actually pretty smart! That recklessness is actually hardwired problem solving in impossible situations because that was what was trained in me! I’m idiotic because SEALs are fucking crazy. We let ourselves be drowned to build up a resistance, we go through crazy training exercises for any extreme case scenario because we can be sent into anything. But if I had told you any of this without ‘proof’ you wouldn’t have believed me.”
“Why did you tell me you didn’t go through with the SEALs when you actually did,” Bobby asked.
Buck took a long look at Bobby before shrugging. “I don’t know. I guess it felt...safe to say that. I saw and did a lot of things that...it was just better if I...I wanted to forget,” Buck ended up whispering. “I didn’t want you to look at me like some monster or-or some war hero. I wanted a fresh start. I didn’t want to think about over there...everything that happened. So, it was easier to lie to you than tell the truth.”
“But we can’t forget what happens over there. We signed up for it and we did our best, Buck. It always follows you home...you know that if it ever gets to be too much, you can come to me, right,” Eddie asked quietly.
Buck nodded, not meeting Eddie’s eyes, “yeah, yeah. I know. Uh, can we-can we talk about something else now?”
“Did you see the game on Tuesday?”
“No, I missed it, what happened?”
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After Buck’s cells graft and Daniel is on the mend, The Buckleys abandon Buck across the country. A few years later, Daniel gets sick again and dies. The Buckleys go on vacation and kidnap Buck when they see him, going back home. When the news breaks out about the missing child, the Buckleys cut Buck’s hair, which was being kept long and curly—nevermind that they don’t know how to work with curly hair anyway—conceal Buck’s birthmark and homeschool him for a few years until the world forgets about the missing kid.
Buck works at the 118, Eddie doesn’t.
Buck is not fired, but is made man behind with a warning for being found having sex with Eddie, who the 118 assume is just a hook-up, in the firetruck. Hen sends Buck to help Athena, but they don’t get a chance to talk. Buck stops the attacker with the hose right as backup arrives. Athena goes to thank him and congratulate him on his quick thinking when Buck calls her mom questiongly. Athena is taken aback until she notices his birthmark. She gets choked up and hugs him tight, relieved to know he’s alive and well after spending all this time looking, hoping, dreading what had happened to her boy.
They reconnect— Athena tells him she never stopped looking and Buck tells her his parents took him and what that meant for him growing up. He shares what his life was like when he left Pennsylvania until he found a good family with Eddie and Chris. Buck introduces Athena to the Diazes and folds her into his life. For a while, Buck continues to hide his private life from the 118, but it changes when the bombing happens. Athena is inconsolable on scene and being held back.
At the hospital, Eddie shows up with Carla and Chris, haggard and manic, asking for Evan Buckley. Chris curls up to Athena, crying.
The 118 has questions and they’re gonna have to wait for answers.
No need to claim a prompt. If written on AO3, please gift it to me. On tumblr, tag me. I have the same name on both websites.
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I just... All the casual mentions about Doug like he didn't nearly murder their daughter, the way Buck's mom belittled his nickname like his name isn't a part of his identity, a sign to the world that he is his own person before he is anyone elses (even theirs)..... the way they never came to see Buck when he was caught in an explosion and was crushed underneath a firetruck, the way Maddie was kidnapped and they weren't on the first plane out to see her to make sure she was okay.....
Maybe they weren't physically or mentally abusive (though there is a case to made that swearing your nine year old to secrecy over the death of her sibling is pretty damn close), but everything the Buckleys have done has proven to their kids that they don't care. That their love has to be earned and that both of them have done a shit job of doing so, proven to them that the only ones they can count on is each other. It breaks mys heart, man. I can't imagine how bone-achingly lonely they both must have been when Doug isolated Maddie. No wonder Buck imprinted on Bobby and the 118.
IDK. All this to say, the Buckleys' certainly aren't the worst, most violent parents I've ever seen on TV, but they did a number on their kids, and no matter what trauma they faced in the past, they failed their kids from the very first, and that's fucked up.
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I just...really needed someone to yell at the Buckleys on Buck’s behalf the way he did for Maddie. Missing scene from 4x05.
Read it on AO3
The wrong Buckleys are in the station.
Philip and Margaret are sitting at their dining table, hearing stories about Buck from anyone who will talk to them – which is most of the 118. Eddie’s a little touched by the fact everyone who’s in the station – B shift just coming off a particularly brutal twenty-four, C shift in for obligatory wellness check-ups, their own shift about to be on duty – have all found the time to come tell Philip and Margaret about how beloved their son is.
Everyone except Eddie, that is.
He can’t move from the couch because if he does, it isn’t going to be for nice reasons. He’s hiding his face behind a book that may as well be upside down for all the attention he’s giving it because that way no one can see that he’s biting down on his own finger to keep himself from shouting at them.
When Buck had been angry with them, it was easy enough for Eddie to be level-headed, be the calming, steady friend he needed. The one who knew what that rage felt like and knew it was possible to keep it under control without destroying yourself.
But Buck isn’t here, and he’s not particularly mad anymore. Because Buck’s heart is made of gold and he can’t hold grudges like that. Even when he’d felt abandoned by his real family and been told not to talk to them, he’d still done stupid shit like “accidentally” run into them in the grocery store.
Eddie hears his own voice echo in his head saying, “you’re exhausting,” and he sees that expression in Philip and Margaret Buckley’s faces while everyone talks to them about Buck, and he bites down on his own finger so hard his jaw makes ominous creaking noises and he can feel the bone between his teeth.
“You all know Evan so well,” Margaret says, sounding like she’s trying not to be confused.
“Yes, Evan sounds like he’s grown into a good man,” Philip says, like that’s surprising.
“Do any of you know, does Evan have someone—”
“His name’s Buck, actually,” Eddie hears himself say.
Every head in the loft turns toward him. Chim and Hen look frozen, but in that fixed way like they’ve been trying to figure out how to say that themselves. Bobby, who’s been behind the kitchen island the whole time chopping things into unnecessarily small pieces, shoots him a warning look that Eddie tries to heed. He tries to put his head back behind his book and disappear again, but the Buckleys are still staring at him.
“His name is Evan,” Philip says. “That’s the name we gave him.”
“It’s the only thing you gave him,” Eddie mutters, definitely loud enough to carry. He avoids the disapproving look Bobby gives him.
“Excuse me, young man, do you have a problem with how we raised our son?” Philip asks. He stands and takes a step towards Eddie’s couch. Over Philip’s shoulder, Eddie sees Hen put a stalling hand on Chimney’s shoulder before he can get himself into shit with his future in-laws.
“No, of course not,” Eddie says, standing as well. He’s taller than Philip, which makes him feel a little better in the deep, burning ember spot where he keeps his emotions. “You would’ve had to have raised him for me to have an issue with that.”
Philip’s eyebrows raise. “Whatever issues you may think you know about, I’m still Evan’s father—”
Eddie actually laughs at that. “Buck has a father, a real one, and it sure as hell isn’t—”
“Diaz.” Bobby’s voice cuts through the loft like a knife. “Take a walk.”
Eddie slams his mouth shut, teeth meeting in a rough clang. He looks over Philip’s shoulder at Bobby, who isn’t unsympathetic, but is also not kidding.
Eddie storms off without another word. He’s halfway across the walkway to the stairs when he hears Margaret ask, “Who was he?”
“You were asking if there was someone special in Buck’s life?” Hen says, and Eddie appreciates how icy her voice is. “Eddie’s the closest thing you’re gonna find.”
After their first call of the morning, and after the Buckleys have left the station, Bobby calls him into his office. Eddie sits in the chair he’s spent a bit too much time in for his own comfort and avoids Bobby’s eye.
“It would be inappropriate and unprofessional of me to thank you for shouting at Buck’s parents,” Bobby says finally. Eddie looks up at him and discovers Bobby is wearing a chagrined expression that warms his heart just a bit. “It would’ve been even more inappropriate and unprofessional for me to be the one who yelled at them, so thank you.”
Eddie laughs, just once.
“I just don’t understand how he can possibly forgive them enough to want to have some kind of relationship with them,” Eddie says.
“Because he’s Buck,” Bobby says.
“But it’s not like them talking to each other now can go back and fix everything and make them his parents again,” Eddie says. “They might as well be starting from scratch, and that’s gonna be useless. The only thing they have in common is—”
He cuts himself off because, really, they don’t have what he was about to say in common.
“What?” Bobby prompts.
“I was going to say the only thing they have in common is Maddie, but they clearly care about her as much as they’ve ever cared about Buck,” Eddie says.
Bobby sighs. “Holding on to the people you’ve lost and to all of your grief instead of paying attention to the people right in front of you does tend to do a number on your personal relationships.”
And Eddie’s back to not being able to meet his eye.
“In my case, I was eventually able to forgive myself enough to move on, and I’ve been blessed with an amazing family in return, and two great kids I am privileged to have a hand in raising,” Bobby says. Eddie opens his mouth to protest the idea Bobby only has two kids, but Bobby pre-empts him. “And one adult son who anyone with sense would be overjoyed to take credit for.”
Eddie smiles at that.
“The Buckleys let themselves be completely consumed by grief for twenty-eight years and they will never get that back,” Bobby continues. “And that’s their loss.”
He doesn’t say “don’t be that way” but he doesn’t have to. Eddie gets the message, loud and clear.
“Well, at least we know that when someone finally pulls their head out of their ass long enough to realise Buck’s someone to hold onto, they should come to you for permission,” he says.
Bobby scrutinises him for a second, and then he smiles, amused by something Eddie can’t guess at. “You know? I don’t foresee that being a problem.”
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Mr and Mrs. Buckley: "We don't like nicknames"
Chimney: "I will accept death now."
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