DISCLAIMER: Women's Murder Club and its characters are the property of James Patterson, 20th Century Fox Television and ABC. No infringement intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
SPOILERS: Season 1, Episode 5: Maybe, Baby.

Change of Pace
By GilliganKane


Lindsay ran her hands through her hair in defeat and gave an angry sigh. Claire, Cindy and Jill were still down in the morgue, rehashing the case and trying to find sense in the whole scenario. The brunette was trying to hold herself together.

She knew she should've given the case to someone else, a fresh mind who wasn't going to let personal emotions compromise the case. The missing woman had been pregnant; Lindsay was pregnant once. If this woman had lost her baby...Lindsay didn't want the weight of the child's life to be resting on her shoulders the way it had been. Sitting at her desk, she looked up and saw Tom sitting in his office. He knew what she knew: they couldn't have lost this baby's life too. It would be too much.

The precinct was empty and the only sounds Lindsay could hear were the coffee maker in the break room and the incessant babbling of the drunk in the holding cell. The Inspector approached the semi-sleeping man and rattled the bars.

"What?" The man covered his ears and scrunched his face in pain.

"Why did I lose it?" Lindsay didn't recognize her own voice. It was a whisper, hollow and pleading, and her grip on the cell bars turned her knuckles white.

"Lady, I don't know what you lost, except your mind." The drunk kept his eyes closed and laid his head on the cold steel bench behind him.

"I didn't do anything wrong," she whispered to herself.

"Neither of us did," Tom said from behind her. Lindsay whipped around and came face to face with those eyes - eyes that were now rapidly trying to blink back tears. Lindsay let her heart rate settle and smiled sadly.

"Then what happened?" Tom didn't say anything. "I just don't...it wasn't fair. And if this woman...if she...if she had lost..." but the brunette couldn't make her mouth form the words. She shook the tears out of her eyes in frustration and moved back a step when Tom reached for her. "I'm sorry."

She grabbed her leather jacket and turned off her desk lamp. Walking faster than her usually fast pace, she blew by the elevator and took the steps down to the lobby of the Hall of Justice two at a time. Reaching the door, she pushed herself across the threshold and took a giant gulp of the cool night air. Tears were streaming down her cheeks now, but she made no move to wipe them away and instead, she sat down on the cold steps and put her head in her hands. Laughter from behind her made her turn around and the brunette immediately rose from her sitting position, shoved her hands in her pockets, put her head down, and headed towards her house. Jill, Claire, and Cindy filed out of the Hall ten steps behind her, oblivious to her presence.

"Have a good night with Luke!" Claire called out to the blond lawyer. The Medical Examiner unlocked her car and out of the corner of her eye, Lindsay saw her motion for Cindy to get in along with her. The brunette turned the corner and a minute later, Claire's vehicle passed her, neither the passenger nor the driver making notice of the broken down Inspector.

By the time Lindsay reached her house, her tears had dried and she was cold. Reaching for her keys in her jeans pocket, she noticed something - rather, someone - sitting on her front steps, seemingly staring off into space. Lindsay felt for her gun and, finding it, un-holstered the weapon, holding it out in front of her. The person on the steps checked their cell phone and sighed loudly.

"Where the hell are you Lindsay?" The intruder muttered loud enough for the brunette to hear.

"Cindy?" Lindsay asked, her voice laced with confusion.

The redhead jumped off the steps and landed on the sidewalk in front of the brunette.

"Lindsay, God. I've been waiting here for...is that a gun?" The reporter took an involuntary step backwards and Lindsay realized that she hadn't re-holstered her gun yet. Smiling sheepishly, the Inspector placed the weapon away, and then remembered how cold she was. She started up the walk and up the stairs. Unlocking the door, she realized that Cindy wasn't following her and turned back to see the reporter still shell shocked on the sidewalk.

"Are you coming inside, or planning on standing out here the whole night. Cause I have to tell you, it's kind of cold and..." Lindsay was cut off as Cindy pushed the taller woman through the open door. "Well, since you asked me to go inside so nicely." Now it was Cindy's turn to smile sheepishly.

"Sorry. It's just that I wasn't expecting to have a gun in my face. Having the door slammed on me, maybe. But a gun? Never crossed my mind." The redhead stepped into the living room and looked around with an odd look on her face. Lindsay couldn't understand why she suddenly wanted the younger woman to like the room. Hell, she didn't even like her own living room.

"Speaking of slamming doors, why are you here?" Lindsay finally asked when the reporter turned around. "No offense or anything."

Cindy grinned. "People usually say 'no offense' before they say something offensive you know." Lindsay waved her hands in a noncommittal motion.

"Yeah, well I'm not just any person. So, what's up? Last I heard, you were going to your office. Or was it Claire's? You two are so chummy and all recently," Lindsay said in a mocking tone. Cindy stuck her tongue out at the brunette.

"I asked Claire to drop me off on the corner. I told her I wanted to walk."

"And you ended up here?" Lindsay didn't wait for an answer as she turned and walked into the kitchen, Martha at her heels. "Beer?" she called out to the redhead. Cindy yelled back a yes in response and Lindsay opened two bottles, then poured some food for the border collie waiting patiently at her feet. Carrying the cool bottles back into the living room, she noticed that Cindy had made herself comfortable on the couch. The brunette kicked off her shoes, handed Cindy one of the beers and flopped down on an armchair across from the sofa. The two drank in silence for a few minutes until Lindsay broke the silence.

"So really, why are you here?"

"Claire thinks you need a 'change of pace', and thinks you should quit your…" Cindy said at the same time, the rest of her sentence trailing off. She paused and stared at the brunette, trying to think of the right way to answer the question. She looked as if she was going to crack a joke, but swallowed her thought instead. After a moment, she opened her mouth again.

"I was worried about you." Martha came padding into the living room and jumped up on the couch with Cindy. The reporter smiled and stroked the dog's back as Martha laid her head on the redhead's lap.

"You were worried about me?" Lindsay repeated. Cindy nodded.

"You looked a little...off, when we were talking about the case." Lindsay flinched. "You were doing that," Cindy added.

"Doing what?" Lindsay asked defensively.

"Flinching," Cindy responded softly. "I'm not trying to make you upset," the redhead said, noticing the tears starting to form in the other woman's dark eyes. "I just wanted to make sure that you were okay."

"I'm fine," Lindsay all but growled. From her position on Cindy's lap, Martha looked up at the harsh sound and Cindy looked like she wanted to sink into the fabric of the cushions behind her. Instead, the reporter placed her half-empty beer bottle onto the coffee table and patted her pockets for her cell phone. Standing up, Cindy nodded and the look in her eyes was enough to make the brunette cry.

"Well, I think that if I leave now, Claire's boys might save me some pizza. I'll see you tomorrow." The reporter headed for the door, giving Martha one final pat on the head.

"She can't give the baby up." Lindsay's voice stopped the redhead in her tracks. Cindy turned back to where the Inspector was sitting, but Lindsay's gaze was focused on the bottle she was rolling in her hands. "If she does, she won't...she can't...it's hard to...I lost my baby." Cindy crouched on her knees in front of the brunette and placed a hand under the strong jaw, raising her head so that the redhead's eyes were locked with Lindsay's.

"Lindsay I..." But Lindsay shook her head. "I'm sorry," Cindy finally decided on saying. The brunette looked down at the woman in front of her, and her tears rolled down her cheeks for the second time that night. Cindy reached up and wiped them away gently. As the reporter's hand came back down, Lindsay caught it in her own. The color of the brunette's eyes changed and before she could stop herself, Lindsay was kissing Cindy, one hand slipping into the red hair. Lindsay pulled the reporter to her feet and then stood, bending the redhead back in an attempt to move to the couch. Lindsay felt her foot fall on Martha's tail and when the dog yelped in protest, Lindsay could feel her ears ringing. But the pain disappeared as Cindy's hands moved under her shirt and the brunette shivered at the cold touch. She removed her mouth from the reporter's and continued to kiss down the younger woman's jaw line. Cindy's hands continued their dance as they moved to her stomach. Then the coolness disappeared and Cindy moved back, almost stepping on Martha for a second time that night.

"Lindsay I'm sorry. I didn't mean to...I mean...oh God." Cindy ran her hands through her hair and Lindsay desperately wanted to cover the distance between them and run her own hands through the red locks. She didn't even realize she was off in her own world until Cindy moved. "I should go. I should...I'm just going to go, and I'll see you tomorrow. Okay? Good, great," the redhead was saying, hands fumbling to smooth down her hair and her jacket. Cindy moved sporadically towards the front door and it took Lindsay a second or two to cut the redhead off. Her hand came down on the door just as Cindy was pulling it open. The redhead looked up at the taller woman in confusion. Lindsay was smiling.

"Where are you going?" Cindy looked at her hands nervously. Lindsay cleared her throat. "Because, I don't want you to leave." Cindy's head snapped up and a smile lit up her face.

"Oh thank God. Because I don't know what..." Lindsay stopped the barrage of words coming out of Cindy's mouth with her own. The redhead let go of the doorknob and her hands resumed their previous roaming position. Lindsay slipped her nimble fingers under Cindy's jacket and moved it off of the reporter's shoulders, bringing the redhead back into the living room. The jacket hit the floor and a second later, the two bodies fell onto the couch. Cindy moved Lindsay's shirt up the brunette's torso and Lindsay raised her arms in assistance. The moment the shirt was gone, Cindy kissed down Lindsay's neck while the brunette arched her head back for more access to the area. As Lindsay worked the buttons on the redhead's shirt, the doorbell sounded through the house and Cindy jumped underneath her. Lindsay's head fell in defeat on the younger woman's shoulder. She felt the redhead laughing beneath her.

"Ssh," Lindsay whispered. "Maybe they'll go away." Cindy nodded and pressed a kiss to Lindsay's forehead, still smiling. The doorbell rang again, this time accompanied by a heavy pounding that Lindsay thought was going to break the glass for sure.

"Lindsay! Lindsay! I know you're in there!" Lindsay stiffened in Cindy's arms and the redhead reflexively tightened her grip on the brunette. Tom kept pounding on the door. "Come on Lindsay!"

Angrily, Lindsay jumped off the couch and shivered as she realized she was only wearing a bra and jeans. She turned to look at Cindy and smiled at the reporter's grin. "It's over there," Cindy said, pointing to the hallway between the kitchen and the living room. Lindsay grabbed her shirt off the ground and put it on quickly, not caring that it was inside out and backwards. From her position on the couch, Cindy laughed quietly until Lindsay shot her a soft glare. The brunette marched towards the front door and pulled it open just as Tom was about to knock again.

"Lindsay, listen..." The brunette cut him off as she raised her hand. He tried to muscle his way in the door, but Lindsay made a point of taking up the whole doorframe. "I need to talk to you."

"Can't it wait until tomorrow, Thomas?" Lindsay asked in a menacing tone.

"No, I need to talk to you now." This time Tom got through the door and headed towards the living room. Lindsay followed him. "It's about the..." Tom's sentence stopped as he noticed the redhead sitting on the couch. "I didn't know that you had...didn't one of my guys arrest you once?" Tom asked, looking at Cindy. The reporter looked at Lindsay who couldn't keep a straight face. "Wait," Tom looked between Lindsay and Cindy. "You two are friends?"

Lindsay looked at Cindy and started to push Tom back towards the front door. "Not only are we friends, but right now, I'm trying to seduce her," Lindsay drawled out, casting a glance at the redhead. Tom looked bewildered. "And you, Lieutenant, are cramping my style. So if you'd kindly leave my house...no. Just get the hell out." Lindsay shoved her ex-husband through the doorframe with ease and closed it after him. Taking a breath, she walked back into the living room with a smile on her face. On her couch, Cindy was trying to stop laughing.

"He's cramping your style?" Cindy repeated in between breaths. Lindsay peeled off her shirt and dropped it on Martha's head. The collie fought it off and wandered into the kitchen.

"I'm trying to seduce you," Lindsay whined as she placed a kiss on the skin she had managed to expose by unbuttoning some of the redhead's shirt. She could feel Cindy laughing under her lips.

"You have style?" Cindy asked mockingly.

"Are you going to let me do this or what?" Lindsay asked impatiently as she worked the rest of the buttons open. She looked up and kissed the skin behind the redhead's ear, as she pushed the shirt down Cindy's arms.

"Seduce away," Cindy whispered before capturing the brunette's mouth with her own.

The End

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