The Brightest Star
Disclaimer: I do not own MASH or any of its property. I make no profit off this work and do not intend to. I write to entertain.
Warnings: goodbyes, war, depression, anxiety, panic attacks, repression, ptsd, trauma, war related trauma, period typical homophobia.
Summary: The war is over and everyone has gone home. Our two local idiots in love are idiots (in love). Hawkeye finds it hard to adjust and BJ is busy pretending the war never happened. Can BJ make up for it by saving Hawkeye? Well, Peggy will surely give a go! ADHD!Hawkeye, Autistic!Hawkeye, Neurodivergent!Hawkeye, Autistic!BJ, Neurodivergent!BJ
AN: Set after the series finale. The war is over and everyone has gone home. ADHD!Hawkeye, Autistic!Hawkeye, Neurodivergent!Hawkeye, Autistic!BJ, Neurodivergent!BJ
Two travellers end their journey
Their dance is finally over
Only the night knows their secret now
One traveller goes right, the other left.
One looks back
The other does not
If the star crossed lovers could meet again
Could it ever be expressed
What they each meant by goodbye?
That one could never forget
That the other would do everything possible to forget
Could a false sorry be uttered
Could fate truly keep them apart for long?
They were soulmates
They were lovers
They were playmates
But they were all too human
The only flaw in the romance
Perhaps fates only flaw
After the war had ended, nothing felt real. It was like he had died sometime during the war but no one had told him. His was just a walking ghost. It was hard to remember he was even alive. That he had a body, a body that had needs like food and water. Sleep.
His father had offered him a position at the clinic, but Hawkeye didn't feel ready to return back to civilian life just yet. He wanted to wait till he was ready. But he never seemed to feel ready.
He could understand his symptoms from a doctors perspective but he was still confused about how he really felt. The last three years had not prepared him for a quiet life. There was no emergency here. No push. No reason to get up. No friends to cheer out of their stupefied zombie states. He had laughed and joked to see them smile, but they had also made him smile. Now he had no reason to laugh and smile.
He didn't even feel human anymore.
He knew his father was concerned. He didn't like see his father worried. So he hatched a plan. "I think I might just need some time to process things, so I'm going to California. I'll visit Beej and talk things over. I'm not sure how long I'll be but uh...it will be fine." He proposed one night over dinner.
His father looked relieved. "I think that's a good idea. The practice did well while you were off in Korea, so I have some savings you can use. Rent a nice place, something with a nice view. Take the time you need." He offered.
Hawkeye felt guilty about the lie but he was secretly relieved too. He didn't want to worry his father.
And so it happened that a week later, Hawkeye was in a hotel in California, looking for a place to rent for a few months. He had a small income sent monthly by the army, plus the savings his father had sent to his account. If needed, his father could send more.
He managed to find a room, cheap. Plus the landlord was kind; he was happy to work with Hawkeye if there was any issues. He said that he respected the troops, and the doctors who had helped "America win the war". Hawkeye felt vaguely sick upon hearing that but didn't begrudge the help. After three years of war, he knew survival sometimes meant compromising ones values. Instead he had smiled politely and thanked him. He had happily paid the bond and would move in with in the week.
He was home! He was finally home! He could hug his daughter! He could kiss his wife!
He was anxious to fit right in. He immediately started all the tasks Peg had been doing. Peg helped. He thought that this might have been a terrible idea but it had helped him fall back into rhythm with her. Soon they were back to family life.
He spent every moment he could with Erin. His daughter made the war seem like nothing more than a bad dream. He could forget.
At night the war came back, as the worst of dreams. He would wake up shaking, eventually he would calm and try to forget again.
He only started feeling guilty when the letters started arriving. All his friends from the 4077th. He left them unopened. Even the ones from "Benjamin Franklin Pierce". To read them would be confirming the reality he was too eager to deny.
He had left as BJ Hunnicut, became "Beej" or "BJ". He was BJ Hunnicut again. "Mr Hunnicut" to everyone. Not "BJ". Certainly not "Beej".
Peg must have realised it too, because the letters vanished soon after arriving. Maybe she threw them out. Maybe she kept them. Either way, what did it matter?