DISCLAIMER: CSI and its characters are the property of Jerry Bruckheimer and CBS.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Cold Shoulder
By Annette


Part 1

Sara exited her Denali, kit in hand, and walked up to the figure standing by the phone booth.

"I've been waiting for you." An obviously irritated Sofia spat out as Sara approached.

"Sorry, I headed out as soon as I got your page."

Leaning casually against the phone booth, chewing on a toothpick, Sofia responded. "Really, 'cause uh, I left a voice mail several hours ago."

Completely ignoring the implied accusation Sara simply said, "What's up?"

"The anonymous call was traced to this phone booth. I figured you'd want to process."

Sara moved quickly toward the phone booth and pointed her flashlight into it. "There is… fingerprint powder… on the phone?"

"Yeah, I got bored waiting, I thought you might need some help. No useable prints, but check out the floor."

Rolling her eyes in evident exasperation Sara pointed the beam of her flashlight toward the floor of the phone booth. Dropping to her knees she looked around the floor. "That's a lot of hair… similar hair to the crime scene."

"The victim was killed 12 hours before this call was made." Sara looked up at Sofia as she continued. "If that's his hair, what's it doing here?"

"Well, let me bag and tag a sample of this hair and maybe we can figure that out."

Finishing up and returning to her Denali to stow her kit Sara completely ignored Sofia. And Sofia, having had about enough of the cold shoulder, walked over to Sara. Her righteous indignation was momentarily forgotten as the sight of a firm ass atop long, long legs greeted her. Mesmerized, she slowly approached the unaware woman.

I walk up behind her and press myself against her while grasping her hips. She starts but quickly relaxes when she realizes it's just me. "Hey, what are you doing?" I move my hands up her sides and around front to cup her breasts. "You. Are. So. Sexy." Each word punctuated with a squeeze. Her hips begin a slow rocking against me and I move with her. I slide a hand down and unfasten her pants as my other hand continues to squeeze and pinch her breasts. Slipping between her skin and her panties I manage to reach my intended target. Slowly I circle my finger over the bundle of nerves that tops her sex. She increases her rocking and begins to moan my name. I press harder against her and feel my own release looming. I increase the pace of my fingers and soon we are both gasping and pressing into one another to prolong the pleasure. And through the haze of our shared pleasure I hear her calling my name. "Sofia, Sofia."

"Hey Sofia!"

Sofia started when she realized that her name was not being called out in pleasure. "Wha…"

"Are you alright? You look, I don't know, all flushed and your breathing is erratic." Sara approached her with concern, which grew as she saw Sofia suddenly pale.

Realizing that she was basically caught having an erotic daydream a wide-eyed Sofia turned and sprinted to her car.

"Hey!" Sara yelled after her. "Where are you going?" She watched, perplexed, as Sofia pealed out of the lot. "What the hell?"

Getting into her car Sara made her way back to the lab, spending the trip trying to somehow make sense of what she just witnessed. Going over the events that led up to the Detective's hasty retreat Sara began to theorize possible reasons. Unable to reach a conclusion based on motive Sara returned to reviewing the physical clues.

Let's see, when I turned around she was standing there with this glazed expression. She was looking right at me but I know she wasn't really seeing me. Her skin was flushed… Her breathing was labored… If I didn't know better I'd say she was… Aroused? Why on earth would she be aroused, what could have caused it? I mean it was just she and I. No, no way!


Part 2

Days passed and Sara had no contact with Sofia during that time. She did however spend an inordinate amount of time wondering about the incident – vacillating between anger and curiosity – but determined to get some answers. Then, finally, she caught sight of the woman in question and set out in pursuit of those answers.

Trying her best to go unnoticed, Sofia was quickly moving through the lab, intent on making it out of the building without running into Sara. She knew she'd eventually have to face her, but for the life of her she could not figure out what she would say. I mean I basically got caught fantasizing about Sara… by Sara! By now I'm sure she's figured that much out. What the hell am I supposed to say to that? I'm really sorry Sara; I was just having a hormonal teenage moment! Things were just starting to click between us, too.

Her introspection was interrupted when a hand wrapped around her forearm and she found herself face-to-face with none other than Ms. Sidle herself. "Uh, hey… hi…" Sofia nervously sputtered.

"Hey. I get the sneaking suspicion that you're trying to avoid me. You do realize that you won't be able to do that for very long… We need to talk about what happened Sofia – if we're going to work together we're going to have to clear the air. Everyone is going to notice the tension between us and I am not prepared to answer to it."

All the while Sara was speaking Sofia was looking everywhere but at her. She was nervously fidgeting and her heart was racing. Shit! I'm not ready to have this conversation…

Sensing no answers forthcoming from the obviously nervous woman in front of her Sara decided to take further action. Grabbing Sofia by the arm she led her toward the locker room in hopes that the less conspicuous location would help Sofia open up and contribute to the conversation.

"Look, I know this is not the place for this discussion, but I'm telling you right now that we will talk about this. As a matter of fact, I want your word that you will meet me today." Sara, still holding Sofia's arm, continued. "I finish up in about three hours, meet me in the parking lot and you can follow me."

Sofia finally looked up at Sara. "Follow you? Where are we going?"

"Sooo…" Sara drawled. "You are paying attention. Good. We are going to take a ride to a spot where we can have this discussion, without interruption. Now, I've got to get back before everyone notices how long I've been gone. So, three hours in the parking lot, right?"

"Yeah, ok. Three hours, sure." Sofia couldn't be more relieved to realize that she was getting a three-hour reprieve.


Part 3

It took a few minutes for the full import of what had occurred to sink in, and Sofia marveled at Sara's calm demeanor. I thought for sure she'd want to rip me a new one, but she just wants to talk. She just wants to talk? Oh, God, she wants to talk! Well, I've got three hours to figure out how explain myself… maybe I'll just tell her I've been having a really bad time in the relationship department and I've always admired her… Yeah, right, what the hell am I thinking? Sofia began pacing, trying with every ounce of her being to come up with a reasonable explanation – other than the truth – for her behavior. Oh, how about I just tell her I was thinking of someone else and the reason I took off like a bat out of hell was because I was mortified. Yeah, that could work. Feeling relieved at having her game plan in place Sofia went about spending the next few hours fine-tuning her story.

Sara finished her shift and made her way to the parking lot. Although it was a busy shift all her free time was spent contemplating the outcome of this evenings meeting with Sofia. So, what do I do if she tells me she's attracted to me? How the hell is that possible anyway? It's not like we've been friends; hell we barely tolerated each other for a bit there. Did I know she was gay? I don't recall us ever discussing relationships, not that any of us really have time for relationships. Maybe that has something to do with it? What am I saying here, she's hard up so that's why she's fantasizing about me? Convenient. Accessible. Quickies in the Denali… Whoa get back on track Sidle.

Just as Sara managed to reign in those stray thoughts she saw Sofia leaning casually against the wall. Slowing down a bit so as not to alert Sofia to her presence she spent a moment really looking at her. With her casual pose and her face turned toward the sun she was truly beautiful. Jesus, what if I'm totally off base here? I know the look on her face the other night was pure carnal lust. I'd bet money she was minutes away from an orgasm. But was I the reason or did I catch her daydreaming about someone else? Well, guess there's only one way to find out…

"Hey, you're here." Jeez Sidle don't act so thrilled. You are supposed to be a little pissed at her.

"Uh, yeah, well you kinda made it clear we need to clear the air, so… Um, do we take two cars or…"

Taking note of the fact that Sofia seemed just as nervous as she was actually helped to calm Sara a bit and she moved closer to Sofia. "I think we'll take mine. I don't want you taking off like a bat out of hell again."

The tone of her voice and the slight smile on her face made the comment palatable for Sofia and so she agreed. "Very funny… fine we'll take your car. You're the only one who knows where we're going anyway."

The two women passed the time in silent contemplation as they traveled down the highway and then off the beaten path. Coming to a stop somewhere in the desert Sofia looked around wondering at the significance of this spot. To her it looked like any other piece of sand but Sara seemed to pick it purposefully.

"So we're here, huh? Um where exactly is here?" Sofia asked.

"Well, that outcropping affords an amazing view of the sunset. I come out here as often as I can when I'm on the right shift."

The far away look in her eyes told Sofia that this was a special place to Sara. She herself had a spot like this – well not in the middle of the desert – but away from the hustle of Vegas just the same. This realization changed something in Sofia, her carefully laid out plan seemed too much like a lie now. Shit, I don't think I can do this! I'm gonna have to tell her the truth.

As they both settled down on the ledge the silence became unbearable but neither knew how to start. Finally Sara decided, since she invited Sofia here, to get the ball rolling. "So, I have no idea what to say right now, but I know someone has to get this conversation going. What I'm hoping to learn from you is just what caused you to run away that night. I thought… well, frankly I didn't know what to think."

"Yeah, I… listen, I'm pretty sure you figured out some of what my reason for freaking was. I… Jesus this is hard." Running her hands over her face Sofia tried to remain calm. "Look Sara, I was embarrassed – I still am." Getting up from the ground she started to pace. "I am so sorry. I don't know what else to say. I don't expect you to understand, and I am more than willing to look into a transfer if you think you could put up with me until I can arrange one." At this point tears are falling down Sofia's cheeks and she took a quick peek at Sara to gauge her reaction. Nothing. She's just staring at me! What more does she want, she has to say something here. I gotta get out of here. And with that Sofia started to walk away.

"Hey! Hey, where the hell are you going?" Grabbing her arm to stop her Sara spun her around to face her. "Don't walk away from me Sofia."

"What do you want from me Sara?" Sofia's voice broke on her name, and she fought her emotions to continue. "I already apologized, I told you I would look into a transfer… What more do you want from me?" Teary eyed and barely maintaining her composure Sofia looked expectantly at Sara.

"First of all, I never asked you to transfer. Running away isn't always the answer. Take it from me, it's usually the wrong answer." Holding out her arms to the still emotional woman Sara offered comfort. "C'mere." At the incredulous look this request received Sara smiled. "C'mon, I don't know about you but I need a hug."

Stunned by the request from the normally stoic woman Sofia hesitated for a moment. The look in Sara's eyes finally convinced Sofia of her sincerity and she slowly moved into her embrace. As the two women soaked up a closeness neither dared dream of they each wondered What's next?


Part 4

"Sit with me?" Sara whisperd into Sofia's ear. "Stay… I'd really like to watch the sunset with you."

The warm breath against her ear caused a shiver to run through Sofia. This woman in her arms felt so incredible and she found herself wanting nothing more than to stay right there with her. "Mmhm… I'll stay. Um, don't think I have a choice. No car, don't know where I am – no place else I'd rather be."

Returning to the ledge Sara sat and motioned for Sofia to sit in front of her. Once seated Sara guided Sofia back so she was resting against her chest and, once settled, wrapped her arms around her. Both women watched the setting sun in silence until the last of it slipped below the horizon. Tightening her embrace Sara leaned forward to whisper once again into Sofia's ear. "We should go. It will start to get pretty chilly pretty fast now that the sun is gone." Feeling the woman in her arms shiver she leaned in again. "See, it's starting already."

"Mmm, no I'm not cold, not cold at all." Moving to stand Sofia reached down to help Sara to her feet. "But you're right, we should probably get going." Pulling the brunette into her arms she whispered into her ear this time. "Wherever you want to go Sara, I'll go there with you gladly." Now it was Sara's turn to shiver.


Part 5

As they walked hand in hand to the car Sara decided on their next destination. "How about we pick up some take out and head over to my place?" Seeing the wide-eyed look that request garnered Sara quickly interjected, "I want to be comfortable and I want you to be comfortable Sofia. We can go to your place… or somewhere else, but I want to have time with you. To talk whatever this is that's happening to us through. To figure some of it out…"

"Hey, slow down." Sofia said as she turned to face Sara. "I think your place would be great. I'm sorry for the reaction, it's kinda automatic. I'm not sure – but if you're like me – I don't think you invite many people to your apartment, am I right?" At Sara's nod she continued. "Then I would love to spend some time with you at your apartment, Sara. Thank you. Besides I don't know about you but I'm starving. Where are we getting take out from?"

"Um, well, you know I'm vegetarian right?"

"Yes, Sara, I am aware of that. Just as you are aware that I'm not, right?"

"Absolutely. That's why we're getting Thai."

Getting into the car they buckled up and Sara started the engine. "Open the glove box and you'll find a menu for the restaurant. Order me what's checked off and get what you want. You don't mind do you? I figured it'd save us some time."

"Nope, no problem, the sooner I feed the beast the better. It can get really growly when it's not fed regularly."

"Growly?" Sara asked. "Is there such a word?"

Smiling Sofia answered. "Well, no, but I happen to think it perfectly describes…" Her stomach chose just that moment to corroborate her answer. "…that."

Pressing a bit harder on the gas pedal Sara laughed as she made her way down the road. "Holy crap! You weren't kidding about the beast! Hang in there growly, we'll be eating before you know it."

Still chuckling lightly Sofia took out her cell and called in their order. With the exception of the occasional growl and subsequent chuckle the rest of the trip passed in relative silence. Both women wondering yet again What's next?


Part 6

Settling in to their meal both women were silent, using the time for introspection. But soon the meal was finished and the time had come for more conversation. There was an undercurrent of tension now, the easy camaraderie replaced with feelings of insecurity – second thoughts and worries. Realizing that the only recourse was to be blatantly honest Sara raised her head, looked at Sofia, and did just that.

"I know you're feeling the same tension or whatever it is. I've gotta tell you, I've been acting a little out of character. You've really sent me for a loop, did you know that? Do you have any idea how hard it is – or has been – for me to be that carefree with someone? It's got me a little freaked out."

Smiling at that admission Sofia responded similarly. "Yeah, I think I know just what you mean. I feel a little off balance myself. I was so busy expecting you to rip me a new one. Then when you went and did pretty much the opposite… I think I'm still waiting for the other shoe to drop."

"Quite a pair aren't we?" Standing quickly Sara began to pace. "I… there are things, events, people in my life… shit! This is making me crazy!"

Quickly moving to the distraught brunette's side Sofia placed a calming hand on her arm. "Hey, whatever it is, we've got time. But please know that whatever you want to say, I'm here… whenever you need to say it, I'll be here."

"I so want to believe that, Sofia, but it's not easy for me." Resuming her pacing Sara continued. "For the first time in a long time I want, no, I need to believe that I've found someone who is willing to listen and not judge. I need to unburden myself… but it needs to be someone who will hold me when I'm done. Someone who won't feel sorry for me."

"I can do that." The sound of those words whispered into the space between… softly bridging the distance as their speaker followed suit. "Let me, Sara." Reaching out Sofia laid her hand gently on Sara's shoulder. "Trust me."


Part 7

"Trust you?" Releasing a shuddering breath Sara turned to the woman asking so much of her. "Trust is a hard thing for me. I've been hurt by people I thought I could depend on, people I put my faith in." Reaching out and cupping Sofia's cheek Sara looked deeply into her eyes. "But, somehow, you've managed to make me believe you're the one person I can count on. Because I know how much it means to you to be trusted."

Moments passed as the two women just stared – neither could say how it happened, but soon they found themselves in an embrace of arms and lips. "Mmm, that's nice…" Sara said as she moved in for another kiss. "Your lips are so soft, just like I thought they'd be."

The blonde grinned in reply as her lips found Sara's and they traded soft, lingering kisses. Kisses that quickly intensified, morphing into a blending of lips and tongues. Bodies pressing ever closer, hands grasping and pulling until they broke away, gasping, suspended in anticipation.



"Touch me," Sofia gasped.

It was all she needed. Sofia moaned as strong, sure hands cupped her breasts and began a kneading motion while lust-crazed eyes held her gaze. So caught up in the sensations was Sofia that she was surprised to find herself suddenly airborne, her firm backside cradled in capable hands. The blonde locked her thighs around Sara's waist as the brunette began nibbling on her neck, directing them towards the bedroom.

Sara's touch was everywhere. Her hands roamed wildly over the blonde's exquisite body, claiming her, marking her. As Sara pulled back to catch her breath, her heart skidded to a near halt at the sight of Sofia's face caught in rapture, the full mouth gasping, dark blue eyes smoking with want. They leapt upon each other discarding their clothing. Before Sara could do anything more, Sofia gently urged the brunette onto the bed and followed, her knees planted on either side of Sara's thighs.

Sofia smiled coyly, now having straddled her happy recipient's trim waist. Slowly she began to rock back and forth, coating the brunette's solid abdomen with her slick juices.

The sight of Sofia's full breasts, nipples proudly erect and heaving in time to her motions was far too tempting. Sara reached up with both hands to squeeze the firm globes at the same time feeling the outline of the blonde's clit rubbing against her stomach.

Suddenly, the blonde found herself on her back, the brunette's strong body settling fully between her legs.

Sara grinned rakishly, lowering herself until her wetness slid against Sofia's own warmth. Bracing both hands on the bed, she began to move against the blonde, their sensitive nubs gliding and rubbing against one another.

"Sara..." Sofia moaned at the delicious friction, hands curving around the brunette's sides to grasp her back.

Sofia's hands had moved down her back and were now clutching her backside, trying to pull her as close as humanly possible. Sara again braced herself and gave full attention to thrusting against her – they were beyond coherent thought, beyond desire, as their bodies drove against each other. Her back arched as Sofia's legs wrapped tighter against her, and she groaned.

Seeing the dark head thrown back, the sleek form taut in impending release, brought Sofia to the edge.

"Yes… Sofia!!" Sara's back arched and Sofia felt the brunette's desire spilling against her in a flood, the warmth pouring against her own. "God... Sara... don't stop!!!" Sofia cried as the crest overtook her, bucking with each passing wave.

Sara finally collapsed on top of the blonde, panting, her face buried in Sofia's neck. The room was silent with the exception of the sound of ragged breathing. As her breathing evened out Sofia felt wetness against her neck and realized that Sara was crying. Proof of that realization came when a strangled sob was barely muffled against her shoulder. She quickly wrapped the sobbing woman tightly in her arms and whispered sweetly into her ear.

"Shh, I've got you. It's ok, Sara." Sofia cooed, trying to help the brunette regain her composure. Gently running her hands up and down Sara's back she felt her breathing even out. "Come on, lets get under the covers and try to get some sleep."


Part 8

Waking a few hours later Sofia reached across the bed only to find it cold and empty. Getting out from under the covers, sitting at the edge of the bed and getting her bearings she looked for any sign of Sara. Realizing she was not in the bedroom or bathroom she made her way toward the living room. There, sitting in a shaft of moonlight, glowing an eerie blue-white in the blackness of the room was Sara. Knees drawn tightly to her chest she looked like a dark angel caught in the glow of creation. Slowly making her way over to this vision of dark and light Sofia knelt at her feet and looked up into porcelain skin marred only by twin tracks of wetness falling from dark eyes. Her mesmeric state quickly morphed into one of concern and she reached out to touch Sara.

"Hey, what's wrong?" Sofia's hand made contact with Sara's arm causing the brunette to jerk back with a gasp. "Whoa, easy… I didn't mean to startle you." Sofia watched closely as Sara's eyes began to focus on the here and now, waiting for the right time to approach her without causing further agitation. Once again she reached out and this time was successful in placing her hand on Sara's forearm – a forearm that was frighteningly cold. "You're so cold baby, why don't you come lie down with me, okay? We'll get under the covers and you can rest a while longer."

Sara looked up at Sofia – confusion and fear mixing in her expression. "I didn't want to be in there when you leave. I don't want to watch you go."

"What makes you think I'm leaving? Oh honey, I have every intention of waking up with you in my arms. That's why I came to get you – I woke up and you weren't there." Moving closer Sofia wrapped her arms around the now visibly trembling brunette. "C'mon, we can catch a few more hours and decide what to do with the rest of the day later. How's that sound?"

Looking deeply into Sofia's eyes Sara saw nothing but truth – no pity, no disgust – just truth. As the realization hit her the enormity of it all knocked her to her knees. Sobbing uncontrollably she marveled at the amount of emotion she'd shown this woman. And another chain fell from around her heart.

"Easy baby, it'll be alright." Pulling Sara to her feet they walked toward the bedroom. "Remember, I told you earlier that we've got time. I'm here… whenever you're ready, I'll be here."

The End

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