idontreallyspar: (Default)
Key To Post Subjects:

EM = [ profile] elite_muses
EM: BG = Elite Muses backstory
LJ-EM = Tom posting to his journal within the EM-verse
RP = Roleplaying posts

* * * * * * * *

Tom's Story:

In an alternate version of the ALIAS timeline, Tom Grace didn't die in the explosion that destroyed the offices of APO. Rather, he remained with the bomb in the subway, intending to do so as long as needed until Rachel physically came for him, informing him the evacuation was complete. Together, they escaped, and are currently dating. Unless otherwise noted, Tom will answer all EM challenges within the context of the RP universe conceived within his activity in his backstory posts, or in canon flashbacks. All posts that deviate will be labeled.
idontreallyspar: ([Hatch] Graceson)
It had been waiting back for them in Los Angeles...his wedding gift to her. She’d seen it, but she didn’t know it was for her...for them. It wasn’t very big or splashy, but it was a good gift...the perfect gift. It was a place they could call their own...a perfect way to start their new life together.

The house was a steal, but still a little expensive...Tom hadn’t cared. When he’d seen the place with Rachel prior to the wedding...another installment of their endless talks about the future...he’d fallen in love. It had a nice lawn and a modest backyard, and room to grow with a little renovation. It wasn’t a dream house, and it might not have been the perfect house...but it was a good house to start a life together.

It should have been their home...but that wasn’t going to be the case now.

Instead, his home was a rickety little shelter on the beach of an uncharted island, with no hope of rescue. It was the pounding of the waves to wake him where he lay beside Rachel every morning, a stretch of beach he didn’t belong on, a primitive little island society he never wanted to be part of.

But now he was...and with Rachel again, as well as a baby on the way. He was, essentially, part of a family more ways than he ever imagined. And it wasn’t a bad thing...but before, Tom couldn’t decide if it was a good thing.

Until he found himself bearing the weight of the name of ‘father’...and as the mantle fell across his shoulders, he knew that houses and hovels didn’t ultimately matter.

*There* was the place where he felt, for the first time, completely at home.

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 303
idontreallyspar: ([Name] Anthony Venomecci)
((NOTE: takes place prior to Tom's entry into WITSEC))

“Come on in, Tony...have a seat.”

Anthony Venomecci walked into the interrogation room and slid into a chair, gazing around with a combination of interest and fear. He wasn’t a perp...he was here of his own free will, and yet he still felt a little aprehensive.

“It’s okay, son.” Detective Barry Gordon assured him as he took a seat on the table. “Remember, you’re not under arrest. Besides, if you’re gonna sign on? You should get used to these rooms.”

Smiling, he nodded slightly. Was it wrong to feel a *tiny* bit of excitement about that, a little bit of pride in what he was becoming?? In just a few weeks, he’d be training to work in these rooms. He’d be wearing that badge, and he’d be making a difference where it really counted.

“I’m pretty excited.” he admitted, folding his arms and leaning back in his seat. “The guys who work the beat in my neighborhood been sayin’ that I should watch out for The Bull.”

Gordon laughed, nodding. “Oh, yeah. Bullworth...he’ll make your life a living hell during your physical exam if you’re not careful.”

Anthony nodded again, sobering slowly. “ gonna record this, or just listen before I fill out a written statement?”

“Studying up, I see...that’s why we’re in here. Detective Coleman is in the viewing room, recording’s miked and being videotaped. Just...say your piece, son.”

He nodded, rubbing his hands over his face as he tried to gather his courage. This felt felt *wrong.* Not just what he’d heard, but what it meant. If he was right...if it wasn’t just a conversation he’d misunderstood, then it meant the two men who had given him a hand in starting things fresh were criminals.

It felt like a betrayal of their trust, being here...but they had betrayed him first, simply by masking their intentions. It might even be dangerous, talking about what he knew...

But he was done making a mess of things. It was time to do the right thing.

Taking a deep breath, he nodded. “ started two nights ago at work. I do stockroom stuff at Outrigger Sports, and I was opening a shipment of parkas when I heard the owners talking. They mentioned something about a Project Sidewinder and Credit Dauphine...we do our banking through them...but then I got kinda suspicious when I heard one of them start talking about money laundering...”

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 414
idontreallyspar: (Tom Groovin)
[WITSEC clearance required] )

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 539
idontreallyspar: ([APO] Dark mood)
[WITSEC clearance required]

I went to see my parents once...not face to face, mind you. It was at my fake one. It was on the first anniversary of my death...I’d been going through a rough time of it, and I just...wanted to see them.

It was one of the most painful things I’ve ever done. They had...aged. Like a decade in just twelve just sat beside my headstone with her shoulders shaking, like she was sobbing without any tears or voice. Dad’s hands were trembling when he put a bouquet of flowers down on my dad, the strongest man I’ve ever known, and his hands were trembling like an old man’s.

I’ve seen what happens to the ones you leave behind...and that firsthand knowledge still haunts me. So I’m not gonna be buried at all. I’ve already got the provisions laid out in my will: when my time comes, I’m gonna be cremated and have my ashes scattered...I won’t give my loved ones, however few I may have, a place to mourn me.

Now maybe it’s kind of morbid, going in-depth with this shit, but with what I do? Death is always jsut around the bend. It’s a constant companion, and something I gotta consider. And if I *do* bite the big one? I figure my final wishes could, in some way, sorta set the people in my life free from a lifetime of grieving. I mean...with no grave, there’s no sign of my death. The only place I’ll live on is in their memories.

And to me? That’s ten times better than the fanciest freaking gravesite.


Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 282
idontreallyspar: (Grace Not Prepared To Run Away)
That’s kind of a hard I religious. I mean...define religious. It’s all really a matter of perspective, if you look at it. Devotion of a religious sort has all kinds of shapes and sizes.

Am I a devout or practicing member of a church? No, I’m not. I was raised Roman Catholic and all, but in some respects I consider myself lucky that I ditched that cold early on in life. In other ways...I still wish I had the faith, you know? Catholics may have the market cornered on guilt, but the ones that really believe, and I don’t mean the zealots...I’m talkin’ more the little old ladies in the back pew with their veils...they have peace. Confidence...they *know* it’s all worthwhile because the check they have to cash after they die is *real.*

But if you’re asking me if I’m spiritual? Absolutely. You might call me something of a loose agnostic, if I didn’t have a few set ideas about the Powers That Be. I believe in God and all...I believe if I talk, he’ll listen. I believe if I’m a good, moral person, he won’t freaking strike me dead with head cancer or something before I’m ready to go.

But do I believe that I’m damned if I say the wrong prayers or spend Sundays in the wrong place? Fuck no. I don’t buy into dogma...the only reason I even believe in God is because of what I do for a living, and who I’m with.

When you’ve come so close to death as often as I have, and then meet a woman like Rachel Gibson? The *only* explanation is divine intervention.

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 283
idontreallyspar: ([Hatch] Graceson)
((NOTE: Based on RP that's taken place at [ profile] landof_reprisal, x-posted to [ profile] made_of_wire.))

Time is relative here on the island these watch still works, but I stopped wearing it weeks ago. )

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 494
idontreallyspar: ([Name] Thomas Grace)
When I was growing up, family was all about the usual stuff...the people at home: mom, dad, siblings, aunts and uncles. It was Christmas morning and 4th of July picnics and even stuff like being grounded as a kid or going home for the holidays when you were older.

[WITSEC clearance required]

I never got that particular opportunity...the going home, growing up with my family. I was still pretty much a kid when I lost them...just a punk that thought he had what it took to make a difference. And right when I was about to reach that point in my life...where I was doing something worthwhile and finding a real place in the world...when I was actually growing up, the worst possible thing happened to me.

That’s when I learned what family is really all about.

It wasn’t the home I made with my first wife or the fake relatives I was estranged from as Tom Grace. Wasn’t even my co-workers that tried so hard to comfort me after Angela got killed. Family isn’t friends or relatives or people you work with.

Family is the woman you dig out of the rubble of a bomb explosion. Family is the man you pull off of a bomb that nearly collapses a full Los Angeles city block from underground. Family is a group of men and women who accept you when you’re there to fill the shoes of the dead and’s the man who shakes your hand when you’re standing where he ought to be.

Family is the workplace that becomes a home. It’s the people you do more than care for or respect, it’s more than even the people you’ll die for.

Family is the people you’ll bleed for...slow, often, and painful. It’s the people that will do the same for you...and have done it. Have, and do, every single day.

I went to work for APO...but now? I pretty much live there...because if home is where your family’s at, then I make my living going home every day...and damn proud of it.

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 355
idontreallyspar: ([APO] Dark mood)
She wasn’t here.

He’d long since stopped looking...had no choice but to stop once shock really set in and threatened to knock him flat on his ass. So he sat now, by the light of the fire to warm his body and little else. The flames were too bright in his line of vision, the darkness too black to his shocky sight.

And in the jungle heat, warmed by the fire, he was still too damn cold.

As he swore to himself yet again that he’d renew his search for Rachel in the morning, he felt a sudden surge of warmth, starting at the core of him and bleeding into every a fire lit from the inside, cheerful and bright. It was almost enough to make him smile, almost enough to make him forget his loss.

It was then he noticed the woman, a statuesque redhead with blood red hair and the eyes of an old woman set in youthful, angelic features. She was devastatingly beautiful, and oddly enigmatic, but even seeing the knockout figure and exotic hair, he found she tugged at his heartstrings more than his hormonal interest. She was pleasant to look at, but not enough to kill his aching wish that the blood red hair was soft gold, and that the tall figure and knockout looks were instead a smaller figure topped with a sunny smile and bedroom blue eyes...

And as their eyes met, the warmth in him crested, consumed...and suddenly he didn’t feel the sting of solitude anymore. If he focused on the feeling and tried really, really hard, he could almost feel Rachel right there beside him, could almost hear her soft laughter...

A stocky, well-built man stepped into sight and laid his hand on the woman’s shoulder, diverting her attention. The moment she looked away from Tom, the spell was broken and ice filled his veins again.

Tom blinked, shaking his head to clear out the cobwebs. He watched as the walking wall of muscle led the woman away with surprising gentleness, despite the possessive way he pulled her against his side.

For a moment, Tom had almost been able to see Rachel’s face again.

And he had the strangest urge to thank the redhead for that.

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 379
idontreallyspar: (Tom and Rachel - Lost Boys And Golden Gi)
I’ve done a lot of things in my life that I’m not proud of...things that, if I had it to do over again, I might have done differently. I’m not sure if I would have changed the outcome, though...not really. It’s the nature of the beast, I guess...the situation I’m in.

You see...I have the unique, and I suppose dubious blessing of being in a place where all the biggest fuck ups of my life led to one enormously, fantastically great thing that I wouldn’t have if I hadn’t messed up, screwed up, and generally gotten shit on for most of my formative years.

I wouldn’t be here in the Agency if I hadn’t made a few bad choices as a kid...and I know, without a shadow of a doubt, that I wouldn’t have Rachel if my life weren’t a walking disaster area. It’s as plain as that. Simple. Rachel is my one fantastic thing, and if you gotta suffer to get someone like that in your life...then I’m good.

Still...I think I might have done one *tiny* thing differently, looking back and knowing what I do now.

Prague...Rachel’s first time going into the field, going back to The Shed with Sydney in her ear and me as her backup.

When I lit Peyton’s cigarette...I’d have flirted with Rachel instead.

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 228
idontreallyspar: ([Civvies] On The Town)
Maybe it was a delayed reaction from the blast last year. Some toxin he inhaled, or some kind of allergic reaction to his new aftershave. Something...anything but the truth, because it was just too ludicrous, too sappy and sentimental and...*right.*

He'd been looking at the world through sunglasses...had been for years, because now everything was brighter. The sun, the colors...the taste of food, the way a cool afternoon breeze felt on his skin. The world had changed overnight, in tiny, insignificant ways that turned everything into a tapestry he'd never seen or felt before.

And it was all because of one little word.


Not for the first time, Tom found himself transfixed by the glitter of gold and prismatic blue as he helped Rachel stuff the last of the small stack of envelopes...her engagement ring never left her finger, and he was pleased that the opal pendant he'd also given her for Christmas rarely left her neck. If it wasn't on display, he could usually see the gleaming silver chain peeking above the collar of her shirt, but today the v-neck t-shirt she wore let the chain hang free and the glittering teardrop stone stand out sharply against her pale skin.

"Here," he finally declared, handing her his last envelope, "you lick that one. I wish you'd have gotten some of those self-sealing envelopes for these invitations...and remind me *why* we're sending formal invites to our engagement party again? I thought we were keeping things small, and I *know* this stack has grown."
idontreallyspar: ([Hatch] Graceson)
He was marrying one stubborn woman, that was for damn sure. )

Muse: Tom Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 552
idontreallyspar: ([Hatch] Graceson)
The box was under the tree Rachel had made him get, wrapped up fairly simply in red and green paper with a silver bow. It was small, too...tiny. Beside it was the real gift...a longer, though equally small box wrapped in much the same fashion.

One box had Rachel's Christmas gift...the other *didnt'* have Rachel's Christmas gift.

But that was the gag...and the point. The smaller box was *meant* to hold the gold cigar band engagement ring that was currently tucked in his pocket. He couldn't keep his hands off it as he waited for her to show up, slipping his hand inside every so often to make sure it hadn't morphed into something else while he waited.

He'd been sure for a while now that he was going to propose, but the few casual hints he'd dropped had told him enough: Rachel wasn't ready, or interested. Not yet, anyway...but he was sick of waiting, and he figured that maybe this little compromise he had in mind...well, it might go off okay. And what better time to lay it down than Christmas, right?

With Rachel's family out of the picture this year, all it had taken was the briefest mention from him that he wasn't big on the holidays for her to sweep in and declare that they were going to do up Christmas and New Year's right...he didn't know what New Year's would bring, but according to Rachel, Christmas would mean a tree (which she'd dragged him out to buy), a viewing of at least one Christmas movie (which he was praying *wouldn't* be IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE or something), and presents...which he was fine with.

So, he decided to get a little bit romantic and a whole lot sappy. The longer box held Rachel's real Christmas gift...the one she could open and keep and gush over. It had taken some advice from Dixon, but the teardrop opal pendant with silver chain still seemed kind of austere. Still, after conferring with Dixon and even happening across Marshall's wife Carrie at the office, he'd gotten a resounding amount of approval on all sides.

The ring box was empty...and he was just praying he wouldn't scare Rachel off when he explained why.

So the lights on the tree were on, the presents were under the tree, and he'd put together a bottle of wine and made sure the kitchen was stocked in case they felt like eating.

All that was left to do now was wait for her to show up.
idontreallyspar: (Tom Groovin)
More often than not, the truth will get you into trouble, especially if you’re in my line of work. It’s all about the secrets, the lies...the fabric you have to weave around yourself to hide what’s really going on and protect those you care about.

Lifting that curtain can only ever bring pain...and death.

At least, more often than not, anyway.

[Classified: WITSEC clearance only]

There’s only been one time in my life when shooting straight *didn’t* get me into trouble...where it actually improved a situation, and that’s pretty much anything and everything involving my relationship with Rachel...from the day we met to the night I told her I was a freakin’ WITSEC refugee.

The lies got me in deep...but every truth I told, every secret I exposed...something about it always drew us closer. She was at my back no matter which way I turned, and I found that sharing even hidden *was* freeing. Liberating. I mean, after everything I’ve been through in my life, it was a first for me to have that unconditional trust. Someone who forgave the lies, because she understood them...who could see past the deception, because it served a higher purpose.

She let me have my secrets, even my biggest one...and in the end? It was for that reason that I couldn’t keep any from her. I didn’t *want* to keep any from her.

Guess it’s that taste of freedom...once you’ve had it? You never want to let it go.


Muse: Tom Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 257
idontreallyspar: (Grace Not Prepared To Run Away)
[WITSEC clearance required to read]

Sometimes I think that *I’m* the polar opposite...being what I am. That maybe the man I am now is the opposite of the man I was gonna be before he died in an explosion.

I think about it on occasion...I wonder if Anthony Venomecci would have joined the CIA, or done any of the stuff that I have. Then I eventually decide that he wouldn’t have. He wouldn’t join the CIA on a freakin’ bet, and lemme tell ya...there’s not a lot that Tony Venomecci *wouldn’t* have done on a bet.

Tom Grace? Just as willing...but a little more careful.

If Tony had lived? He’d probably be a detective with the Willingboro PD by now...or if he was feeling ambitious? The Jersey Sherrif’s Department, or maybe Jersey Highway Patrol. He’d be married to Christine Deseas with at least one kid, maybe another on the way. He’d have perfect credit, a spotless work record...a lot of commendations and a lot of friends.

He would think that he was grateful for his good fortune, that he knew just how great his blessings were...but he’d be wrong.

Tony would be content...complacent. He’d never venture further than his hometown except on vacations, and then he’d never get further than New York or Maine. He’d be fine where he was, and he’d never want to see more of the world. He’d be happy as an honest, respectable man, and he’d never want to push the envelope.

Tony would think the perfect kids and the cookie cutter wife were the pinnacle. He never would have gone for the timid, golden girl computer geek with just a little touch of darkness in her.

If Tony Venomecci had survived, he’d be a man that never learned how close a friend pain can be...and how it can make life so much richer than it is for other people.

So I guess that’s my polar opposite...the happy homebody, the FATHER KNOWS BEST family man. They guy who’s never hungry for something deeper, something more intense...

They guy who’s happy with the horizon instead of shooting at the moon.

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: Alias
Words: 356
idontreallyspar: (Thomas Grace)
It was selfish and stupid...but it was something he had to do.

Anthony dragged the phone towards himself, taking a deep breath to steady his nerves before picking up the receiver and dialing the number slowly, himself a chance to back out, to wise up and do the smart thing instead of fucking up the way he was about to.

It rang four times...he could hear the exchange in his head as each ring sounded off in his ear...the voices were clear as day in his head.

“Gracie! Phone!”

“I’m busy, honey!”

“Well so am I”

In the middle of the fifth ring, it picked up.


Anthony’s eyes fell shut as his throat closed off, rendering him incapable of replying to her, even if he had been able to speak to tell her it was him and that he was alive. Even his own body was trying to hold him back...keep him in check, and keep his family safe.

“Hello? Who is this?”

She sounded tired...tired and in *pain.* The thin, weary little quaver in her voice, giving no weight to her seemingly annoyed words...that sound was all his fault.


Anthony shut his eyes, rubbing a hand over his face, clinging to the sound of his mother’s heavy breath in the receiver, hating himself for ever getting on her case about the sound being annoying. It was such a comfort to was all he needed.

It ended with a click as the other end of the line went dead.

For a moment Anthony could only sit there, phone still pressed to his ear as the dial tone droned on, then started its staccato buzzing in his ear, prompting him finally to place the receiver back on the hook.

He was never going to see her again. Not her, or Dad, or Christine.

Anthony Venomecci really was dead.

Shoving away the phone, he reached for a document sitting on the desk...a form addressed to a man that wouldn’t exist until he signed it. Some release, or affidavit...they were all running together at this point, but this would be the first he’d sign with his new name.

Reaching over for a pen, he uncapped it and hesitated for only a moment before signing it with the name THOMAS GRACE.

And just like that...his life was over.

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 407
idontreallyspar: ([Hatch] Graceson)
Destiny...that`s kind of a thorny question... )

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 688
idontreallyspar: (Grace Not Prepared To Run Away)
Have I ever faced death? Yeah, I more ways than I’d like to admit. I’ve faced it up close and personal, and I face it on the job every day. I’ve stared it down often enough that I’ve become something of...I don’t want to say ‘expert,’ but I think the term afficionado just might fit.

There’s three kinds I’ve come up against in my life...the end you mourn, the end you choose, and the end that comes as part of life. I’ve gone against all three, and so far? I’ve survived them all...for the most part.

[locked from all those without WITSEC clearance]

I faced the first when I was twenty one...or at least Tony Venomecci did. Trust me, of all the ways a man can die, the way he did wasn’t one I would have picked. I was twenty one...still just a kid, and I pretty much got crucified for doing the right thing.

The bad guys got theirs, though...and I spent six months in rehab after a little miracle medicine saved my life and my face. Mostly, anyway. My nose did my scalp, a little. Forehead’s bigger. Least that’s what Rachel says when she sees some of my old photos from the Jersey days. I picked my new name after the CIA offered me a new identity...but for all intents and purposes, I was dead in every way that counted. I had to leave town, couldn’t even see my folks one last time. To this day, everyone I ever knew as Venomecci believes I’m in our family plot at the local cemetery.

I took the life I would have lived and I made it my new start...but I still regret that I never got the chance to do it all up right, you know? I don’t wish for second chances there...but I feel the loss of it all, even to this day.


The end I chose was the day APO was destroyed. I never saw that end, though...because Rachel made me change my mind. Everything she was to me...everything she *could* pulled me from that subway and into the light.

The ones that come as part of life...those ends are the ones I encounter on the job, no matter where I’m at. Hell, they’re the ones we all run into just by crossing the street. We all face death just by living...that’s one lesson I learned the hard way.

And in the end? I think that the pathetic man is the one that can actually say ‘no’ to that question. I mean, c’mon...can you ever really live if you’ve never been ready to die?

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 446
idontreallyspar: (Thomas Grace)
[locked from anyone without WITSEC clearance]

I don’t just believe in second chances...I’ve lived through more than a few. I’ve seen other people get them...I guess it’s a side effect of our business: you change faces so often and so many times that second chances lose a little of their luster. They just become another day at the office.

I try not to look at them that way, though. Regardless of how routine miracles can become when your day to day business is life, death, and the freedom of a nation, there are still moments that surpass even the expected wonders can become something precious. I mean...I’ve read the files about a lot of the agents working in my unit, and their stories are enough to curl your hair. Sydney Bristow’s missing two years, Flinkman’s abduction in connection to SD-6's Echelon project...hell, the whole mess with Agent Vaugh.

Then there’s the stuff I lived through, and I don’t mean my own personal bullshit. I watched a dead woman rise from the ashes to find happiness. I was there for the rescue...right alongside another woman I stood by as she tried to make a new life for herself when she realized that the old one was a lie. Love you, Rachel.

Nadia and Rachel are both examples of what second chances are all about...and how far they can really go. For Nadia, it literally gave her her life back. Without the circumstances she suffered through, she’d never have lived to get to where she’s at right now, and from the looks of it? She’s pretty damn happy.

And Rachel? Well...if I hadn’t pulled her out of the rubble in a ruined building, she never would have pulled me out of the LA subway tunnels that collapsed when that bomb went off.

The CIA gave her a second chance...and she gave me a third.

And in case I didn’t mention it, I love her like crazy.


Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 329
idontreallyspar: (Tom and Rachel - Lost Boys And Golden Gi)
There are certain things I regret about the path my life has taken. I regret causing so much trouble as a kid...I regret losing certain people in my life to circumstances that were beyond my imagining, not to mention totally beyond my control. I regret losing my wife...I mean, come what may there’s always going to be a place for her in my heart. I’ll always love her a little...without her, I don’t think I’d ever have learned to love the way I do today.

And it’s today that that takes all the regret away.

For all its trials and tribulations, my life brought me to this moment in time. Here, in an LA apartment, updating the online blog that I got talked into starting by the woman I love.

The woman I would have never met if not for all the regrets...all the twists and turns my life has taken.

It’s a hell of a thing, but for her I’d do it all again. I mean, if it was the only way we could be together. I think it’s safe to say that meeting and falling for anyone in our business is, inherently, a little screwed up, given what we see and do every day? But if you’re already a pretty screwed up individual, then it fits.

And let’s face it...people don’t get much more screwed up than me.

I regret that some bad things had to happen in my life, and I regret each of those tragedies and mistakes individually, but do I regret the journey as a whole?

Not for one single second.

Muse: Thomas Grace
Fandom: ALIAS
Words: 272
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