DISCLAIMER: All television shows, movies, books, and other copyrighted material referred to in this work, and the characters, settings, and events thereof, are the properties of their respective owners. As this work is an interpretation of the original material and not for-profit, it constitutes fair use. Reference to real persons, places, or events are made in a fictional context and are not intended to be libelous, defamatory, or in any way factual.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: I am not a lawyer, nor have I received any specialized schooling relating to the law, its rules, or its practices. Any and all motions, objections, etc., mentioned/alluded to in this fic are used within the parameters of creative license. In other words: it might not be right, but just go with it.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
FEEDBACK: To author18@live.com

By mel



Alex Cabot looked up from the closing argument she was busy drafting, jumping slightly in surprise at the three fast knocks echoing off her door before it was unceremoniously thrown open by the woman who haunted her dreams and had a tendency to make everyday conversations rather … passionately combative. She watched the powerful brunette stride purposefully into the middle of her office and couldn't help but think of how much easier dealing with the headstrong Detective would be if she could just gather the olive skinned beauty into her arms and kiss her senseless whenever she worked herself up into a strop.

Unfortunately, those thoughts had no bearing on her relationship with the real life Olivia Benson who was perpetually stuck in the 'friend' category.

"Detective," the blonde drawled as she leaned back in her chair and adjusted her glasses. "What can I do for you?"

She expected a rushed demand for a warrant (that was what a lot of Olivia's visits centered around, after all ... unfortunately), or perhaps another rip-roaring fight over the Peters case where Alex couldn't file charges because the evidence was just entirely too circumstantial. An urgent demand, a fight, these were things she was more than prepared to handle. What she got, on the other hand, was something entirely different.

"Hi," the brunette smiled and jammed her fists into the pockets of her leather jacket.

"Um, hi?" Alex carefully set her pen down on her legal pad and smiled tentatively, extremely aware of how her heart was beating faster from just being in the same room with the stunning Detective.

She watched, fighting her amusement at how adorable Olivia looked struggling to find the correct words to voice whatever was bouncing around inside that brilliant mind of hers.

"Do you need me?" Alex asked, arching a perfectly sculpted brow questioningly.

"Um, actually I do," Olivia admitted softly.

"Well, what can I do for you?" Alex asked amiably, doing her best to keep her fantasies to herself and not let them influence her interactions with the brunette.

Olivia stared at the beautiful blonde and bit her lip thoughtfully. Oh the things I would love for you to do to me Counselor, she thought to herself before her embarrassment overwhelmed her again about why she was there. In Cabot's office. Goddamn but that woman is gorgeous.

Alex folded her hands in her lap and rocked back in her chair, rather enjoying the subtle play of emotions rolling across the brunette's features.

"Liv," Alex tried again. "Are you okay?"

"Huh?" Olivia snapped out of her daydream about Alex spread out across her desk and screaming in ecstasy. "Oh, right, sorry. I need a favor."

Of course, Alex sighed. "Well, why don't you tell me what you need and I'll see what I can do."

If Alex hadn't seen it with her own eyes, she never would have believed it. Olivia Benson blushed. Well damn if that wasn't the most interesting thing to happen today, Alex thought to herself as she pushed up out of her chair and rounded her desk to perch on the front edge closer to the now speechless brunette.

"Hey," Alex smiled as she reached out and ran a comforting hand down the Detective's arm. "What is it?"

"I need you to help me with a stake-out tonight," Olivia muttered, eyes downcast as her blush deepened.

"Me?" Alex asked, unable to keep her surprise out of her voice. "And … you?"

Olivia nodded and blushed some more.

Alex chuckled softly. "If you wanted to ask me out on a date you could just … you know …," she let her voice trail off.

"What?" Olivia gasped.

"Ask me," Alex smiled.

Olivia stared at the blonde, her heart beating a mile a minute in her chest and her blush deepening as she processed what Alex had just said. A large part of her desperately hoped that the blonde was serious, but the more realistic part of her convinced the fanciful part that Alex was just teasing. "Hmm. Well, I'll keep that in mind Counselor – but I actually do need your help on a stake-out tonight."

"Oh," it was Alex's turn to blush as she realized that she'd just embarrassed herself. Would have thought that you'd have learned to not go and do something stupid like try and flirt, she mentally berated herself. "Okay. Sure."

"Really?" hopeful brown eyes looked up to stare into endless blue. "I haven't even told you what it is. You'd really help me?"

Alex shrugged self deprecatingly. "If you're willing to be seen out in public with me, I'd be a fool to say no – no matter the situation."

Olivia cocked her head to the side and stared at the blonde. "Anybody in their right mind would love to be seen out with you Alex," she murmured before she could stop herself.

"Well," Alex ducked her head in embarrassment. "Thank you. But why me?"

"We have a lead on the serial rapist in the Village," Olivia ran a hand through her hair, referring to their open investigation into the rapist who was specifically targeting lesbians.

"That's great," Alex smiled, mentally willing Olivia to just get the hell on with her reasoning already. She was only vaguely aware of the investigation because the squad didn't have a suspect yet so she hadn't been fully briefed –and the way Olivia was hemming and hawing had her beginning to think there was something major that she was unaware of. "But I still don't see what this has to do with me."

"Each of the victims visited a club in the Village, Sugarland, the night they were attacked," Olivia explained, her face still hot and her eyes still insanely focused on the pattern of carpet on the floor of the ADA's office.

"Okay," Alex nodded. "And..."

"Um, yeah, you see," Olivia stuttered.

"Just tell me Liv," Alex sighed, her amusement at the brunette's awkwardness wearing thin.

"Each of the victims were blonde," Olivia explained. "Tall, blonde, and beautiful," Olivia continued, pleased that Alex, so far, hadn't interrupted her.

Alex, for her part, was busy staring incredulously at the woman in front of her. Does she really think I'm beautiful?

"And," Olivia cleared her throat in an attempt to draw her attention away from what had to be the most beautiful blue eyes on the planet, "they all wore glasses."

"Glasses?" Alex repeated dumbly.

"Yeah," Olivia nodded.

"You guys don't have fake glasses in your dress-up bin?" Alex chuckled.

"Alex," Olivia groaned without thinking. "Nobody looks better in a pair of specs than you."

This got the ADA's attention. "Really now?"

"Yes," Olivia groaned and covered her face with her hands. Dammit Benson, she's so not interested in you – can you just try and pretend to be a professional. "Of course. I mean," she waved indicatively, "have you seen you? Shit, I knew Cragen should have sent Elliot up to see you about this."

"And yet here you are," Alex grinned. "Telling me that I'm a beautiful blonde who can rock the glasses like nobody else."

"Yes," Olivia nodded, resigned to her embarrassment.

"And, as I'm a hot blonde with glasses, you want me to go to this club and pretend to be a lesbian to try and draw this guy out."

"Argh, I knew this would just make you completely insufferable!" Olivia looked up at Alex and could do nothing to keep the grin that was threatening from breaking free.

"Why do you all think that he'll hit again tonight?" Alex asked, trying to change the subject and save the object of her affection some embarrassment.

And failing miserably.

"It's Blonde Bombshell night," Olivia murmured.

"I'm sorry," Alex leaned in closer to the brunette. "I didn't hear that."

"Thursday nights are Blonde Bombshell nights," Olivia looked Alex in the eye and gave up on trying to contain the blush that was setting her face on fire. "Blondes get in for free … so lots of possible victims for him to choose from."

"I see," Alex murmured.

"I knew it was a stupid idea," Olivia turned to leave. "Just, forget it Cabot. Never mind."

"I'll go on one condition," Alex smiled.

"Anything," Olivia breathed, beyond pleased to have the blonde's assistance. "Anything you want Alex."

"I want you to go as my date," Alex answered.

"And what did you say?" Elliot laughed as he listened to his partner recount her meeting with Cabot.

Olivia dropped her forehead onto her arms that were folded atop her desk and groaned loudly. "Ugh. What could I say? I said yes. Of course I said yes. What would you say if Alexandra Cabot asked you to go to a club with her as her date?"

Elliot laughed again. "I'd tell her I was married but that my partner has been ass over eyeballs in love with her for years."

Olivia lifted her head to glare at the man who was torturing her. "Laugh it up Stabler."

"Oh I intend to," he guffawed. "You finally got a date with Cabot and you're both going to be wearing wires!" he crowed.

"You suck El," Olivia wadded up a scrap of paper off her desk and threw it at him. "Just, can you let me drown in my own misery in peace?"

"Nope," he grinned. "That's what partners are for."

"Something's different with you," Liz Donnelly stated as she leaned back in her chair and openly appraised Alex.

"I don't know what you mean Liz," Alex blushed. "Is there some reason you came down here this afternoon?"

"Is it Benson?"

"I'm sorry?"

"Only Benson makes you this school-girl happy. What did she do?"

Alex was about to pull one of her diversionary arguments out to get rid of Liz when her phone rang. Saved by the bell, she thought as she smiled apologetically and reached for the handset – desperately hoping that whoever was on the line would need a decent chunk of her time so that Donnelly would leave her alone. She was really getting tired of the badgering.

"Cabot," she answered in her normal brusque I'm so incredibly busy this better be damned important tone.

"Hey Alex," Olivia's voice greeted her.

Donnelly watched as Alex's blush spread from her collar all the way up to the roots of her hair as she glanced away and lowered her voice. She sat back further into her chair to observe the one-sided conversation playing out in front of her. Which, she thought, was the most interesting thing to happen today. It was a slow day in the tower.

"What's up Liv? Uh huh. Yeah, I'm still in. No. Why would I back out when you said you'd go as my date? Yes, I will keep reminding you of it. Because you're cute when you blush. What? No, I said I'm kind of in a rush. Okay then. Yeah. Well, I'm not comfortable with a man doing it. Yeah, is that okay? Good. Great. Yeah. They'll be at my place when? Nine. Okay. Got it. See you later Liv."

When Alex looked up at the woman in her office it was to a megawatt grin and two thumbs up. "Way to go Cabot – you finally went and asked Benson out!"

"It's not like that Liz," Alex blushed. "I'm helping the squad with an investigation."

The older woman chuckled as she stood and made her way to the door. "Didn't sound like that to me Counselor. I'll let you finish that paperwork so you can get out of here on time tonight. Don't want you to be late for your big date."

"Was there something you needed Liz?"

Donnelly turned around and grinned. "No, not really. I was just trying to find a way to amuse myself until it was time to go home. This worked beautifully, thanks Cabot."

"El, what's the extension for the tech guys?" Olivia asked her partner as she used her index finger to hang up the phone on her desk, keeping the handset nestled between her shoulder and her ear.

"Um, 9718, why?"

"Alex said she would prefer a woman to set her wire tonight so I need to call and see if Lucy can do it," she explained as she punched the extension in.

Elliot listened to his partner's side of the conversation with a giant amused grin lighting his face.

"Hey George, it's Olivia. … Uh huh, yeah. … No, I haven't tried that pick-up line on a woman before – did it work? … Oooh, ouch, sorry buddy. … Yeah, I'm actually calling about work. … Why do you always sound so damned surprised? … I do too work. … Hard. … Shut up. … Yeah, is Lucy there? … She's not. … Fuck. … Oh please, don't act like you don't swear like a sailor. … Yeah, you're just jealous that I do it better than you do. … Uh huh. … Yeah. … I'll just have to wing it, I guess. … Can you have a gopher drop the kit off here? … You're a saint."

"Sounds like it's your lucky day Liv," Elliot laughed as he watched Olivia drop the handset in its cradle.

"Shut up El," Olivia smiled.

"Well, if she doesn't want one of the guys to do it who's left?" he waggled his brows suggestively.

"Me," Olivia groaned as she dropped her forehead to her desktop with a loud clunk.

"Hey Alex," Olivia smiled as she stepped into the surprised blonde's apartment. "Lucy is out of town at a wedding and since you weren't comfortable with one of the guys doing this," she held up the small microphone and transmitter indicatively, "you're stuck with me."

"You?" Alex squeaked, desperately trying to contain her excitement at the idea of having Olivia's hands on her body.

She doesn't want me to touch her. Shit, I knew she was just joking around about me being her 'date' tonight. "Um, yeah. Is that okay?"

Hell yes it's okay, happy birthday to me, Alex thought to herself as she shrugged and smiled. "I'm fine with it if you are."

Olivia had to bite the inside of her cheek to hold in the victorious war whoop that she wanted to let loose at the thought of being able to actually touch Alex's glorious body. "Alright then. You'll need to, um…"


Olivia looked up and smiled. "Take off your shirt."

"Feeling frisky tonight, are we Detective?" Alex joked as she automatically reached down to grasp the hem of her shirt and pull it off over her head.

"You have no idea," Olivia muttered as she stared at the most perfectly flawless expanse of alabaster skin she'd ever seen.

"So, what's the plan?" Alex asked, doing her best to keep her breathing steady and her legs from giving out as Olivia worked a thin microphone into the cup of her bra.

Olivia, so focused on the fact that she had Alex Cabot in front of her wearing only a form fitting pair of designer jeans and a bra, heard nothing of what the blonde had said.

"Liv," Alex tried again, closing her eyes and willing her nipples to stay soft and pliant as the brunette's fingers danced around her silk covered mounds.

She opened her eyes to look down and focus on what Olivia was doing, noticing that (despite her best efforts) her body was doing a damn fine job of revealing her increasing arousal.

"Mmm," Olivia murmured in response, her tongue reflexively darting out to wet her lips as her eyes focused on the way Alex's nipples were straining against the material of her bra.

Deciding that if she didn't get Olivia's attention away from her breasts immediately that she'd just throw caution to the wind and take the Detective right then and there giving the guys in the truck one hell of a show, she chuckled softly and ran a hand through the brunette's thick hair. "My eyes are up here Detective."

Olivia blushed profusely as she stood up and looked into Alex's eyes. "I know, Counselor. And they're beautiful," she murmured.

Alex swallowed audibly and bit her lip. "Plan?" she husked.

"Oh, right," Olivia took a hasty step back and jammed her hands into her pockets where they could do the least harm. "We'll go in and have fun, watch the crowd, see if anybody matching the perp's description is around. Each victim was attacked in the alley behind the club. We're not sure if he's actually in the club or if he has an accomplice working inside. Apparently he likes to try and 'fuck them straight'."

"And you'll be nearby at all times?" Alex clarified, suddenly very aware of what she'd agreed to do.

Olivia nodded. "I'll be nearby all night. Maybe I'll even ask you to dance," she smirked playfully.

Alex appraised the brunette as she pulled her shirt on over her head. "You have a deal. I would love to dance with you."

"Wow," Olivia grinned, "you're sure an easy date."

"You have no idea how easy I could be for you Olivia," Alex murmured softly as she grabbed her purse and headed out the door.

Alex and Olivia entered the club and ran right into a veritable wall of sensory overload. The bass pumping out of the speakers filled the room with a tangible beat that Alex found incredibly overpowering, uncomfortably so until she got used to the feeling of the music literally reverberating through her body and then she found the steady thwump from the sub-woofers strangely hypnotic.

Olivia completely ignored the music as let her eyes adjust to the change in lighting so she could better appraise the patrons. There was a healthy mix of different types of women and men filling the space, a decent percentage of them blondes, and it was becoming more and more apparent that picking their guy out of this sea of humanity would be damn near impossible.

"Why don't you go get us a drink," Olivia leaned in close and whispered through blonde silk.

Alex shuddered at the feeling of the brunette's warm breath dancing across her ear. "Where are you going?" she asked, doing her best to not let her fear show.

"Gonna have a quick look around," Olivia smiled. "Don't worry Lex, I'll meet you at the bar."

Alex nodded quickly. "Okay. What do you want?"

Olivia grinned and squeezed Alex's hand reassuringly. "Surprise me."

Olivia was on the tail-end of her scouting loop when she spotted Alex perched daintily on the edge of a barstool at the end of the shining slab of teak and smiled to herself as she watched the blonde nurse her drink and chat with everyone who approached her.

Good girl Alex, she nodded approvingly, working hard to ignore the stab of jealousy that she felt as she watched possible suitors approach the blonde.

"Liv," the earpiece Olivia had been outfitted with crackled to life. "You have a visual on Alex?"

"Yeah," she murmured into her collar where her mic was hidden.

"How's your girl doing?" Elliot asked.

"She's amazing," Olivia answered softly, never once taking her eyes off of the enigmatic blonde as she played and replayed the vision that was Alex Cabot in a navy blue silk bra through her mind.

At the other end of the bar Alex felt the heavy weight of eyes on her and looked up to capture Olivia's gaze. She smiled and nodded at the handsome brunette and picked up her glass and the drink she'd ordered for the detective before carefully making her way through the crowd to where Olivia was watching her.

"Hello," she drawled, holding out the Jack and Coke she'd ordered for Olivia.

"Hey," Olivia smiled as she took the proffered drink.

"Very smooth Casanova," Elliot chuckled.

"Shut up," Olivia muttered.

"I'm sorry?" Alex replied, hurt flashing quickly through her keen blue eyes.

"Not you," Olivia placed her hand on Alex's wrist and smiled softly. "Him," she whispered, tilting her head slightly toward her collar where her microphone was hidden.

"Oh. Well then, how about we go and have that dance you promised me?" Alex asked.

"I don't know," Olivia smiled and took a healthy drink from her glass as she heard Elliot laughing loudly in her earpiece.

"Go on Liv, bust a move," he mocked. "Just, you know, try and make it look better than whatever the fuck that was you were doing at the precinct earlier when you were practicing – because that was just … there are no words for how bad that was."

Olivia blushed and hid her eyes with her free hand.

Alex, who didn't have an earpiece, looked at the brunette with something akin to worry. "Are you okay? You have to strangest look on your face right now."

"Huh? Oh yeah," Olivia focused on the beautiful blonde in front of her.

"Are you sure? Because you look like you're in pain," Alex scrunched her brow in confusion as she studied the brunette.

"I'm fine," Olivia replied curtly and gulped down the remainder of her drink. "Let's go see if we can get some attention onto you and draw this guy out of the shadows," she stated before jumping up and heading out into the gyrating mass of bodies filling the dance floor.

"You know," Alex murmured as she stopped in front of Olivia and pointedly grabbed the brunette's hips. "You could just relax and pretend to enjoy yourself."

"I don't have to pretend to enjoy myself," Olivia smiled as she felt the blonde's fingers wrap around her hips.

"Could have fooled me," Alex frowned as she stepped in closer to Olivia and began moving in time with the brunette.

"We have an audience," Olivia smiled, sliding her arms around the blondes neck as she reminded her that theirs weren't the only ears listening to what was happening inside the club. "I'm quite happy with where I am at the moment."

"Me too," Alex murmured. "So, why don't we get this asshole's attention onto me so the pervert in the van can arrest him and we can have some fun."

"Tell her I heard that and that I'm not a perv," Elliot's voice crackled through Olivia's earpiece.

Olivia just laughed and smiled at Alex. "You have yourself a deal Counselor."

Alex smiled as she let herself go, finally enjoying having Olivia under her fingertips and not having to worry about what anybody thought of her actions. She was undercover. 'Pretending' to be a lesbian. She had to act the part, right? She smiled and bit her lip to keep from laughing as she reveled in the feeling of finally, for once in her boring everyday existence, NOT having to hold any part of herself back. There were no reporters here waiting to snap that one money shot that would keep her from the DA's chair. Nobody here to judge her. It was extremely liberating to finally be free to be herself for a change instead of the Ice Princess ADA whom everybody expected her to be.

Olivia had to bite her tongue to keep from moaning as Alex's long thing fingers grasped, rubbed and stroked her hips as the blonde pulled herself closer.

Alex's body was responding to the proximity of the brunette's powerful frame with reckless abandon. She felt like she was on fire, every nerve-ending demanding to be stroked, touched, caressed. She danced closer as she realized that she needed more. Needed the brunette's hands upon her body. Needed to feel Olivia's skin slick with sweat beneath her fingertips.

"You move beautifully," Alex smiled at her dance partner.

"Thank you," Olivia blushed. "You too."

"Mmm," Alex smiled and moved in closer still, expertly sliding one jean clad leg between Olivia's as she began to move more provocatively against the other woman.

H-h-ooo-ly fuck, Olivia thought, moaning softly as she felt the blonde's trim thigh press tight to her center, her hands dropping of their own volition to grasp Alex's hips and pull the blonde close. She let her mind wander as she reveled in the feeling of actually touching Alex, of actually having her hands on the blonde's body; enjoying the way she was able to direct Alex's movements against her with a soft push or a gentle pull one way or the other on her hips in much the same way as she would have were they in bed. It was a strangely intimate feeling, considering they were surrounded by an untold number of strangers and that their relationship was regrettably far from intimate.

"I could get used to this Lex," Olivia husked.

"Me too," Alex murmured, pushing herself that much closer to the brunette so that their hips were pressed tight against each other and one of Olivia's strong thighs threaded it's way between her legs.

"God Alex," Olivia moaned as she felt the blonde grind down on her leg.

"Liv," Elliot's voice broke the spell she was rapidly falling victim to. "I know you don't want to hear my voice right now, but keep your game face on partner."

"Fuck," Olivia groaned, her head dropping to the surprised blonde's shoulder.

"What?" Alex asked, the brunette's outburst catching her by surprise.

"Damned pervert in the van," Olivia growled.

"Oh yeah," Alex breathed, blushing slightly as she remembered that they were supposed to be working.

"I really hate my life sometimes," Olivia whined.

Alex studied the olive skinned beauty in her arms carefully, desperate to see some sign that Olivia felt the same things she did when they were dancing. "Sorry," she offered softly.

Olivia appraised the blonde carefully, finally deciding that it was worth finally taking a chance on Alex. "I'm not. The timing just sucks. We'll talk later," Olivia leaned in and pressed a soft kiss to the blonde's cheek, breathing deep and inhaling Alex's perfume.

"I'd like that," Alex smiled, pleased to see that perhaps, after all this time, she and Olivia were finally ready stop dancing around their attraction.

"Good," Olivia smiled and stepped back from the blonde. "I need a drink. How 'bout you?"

"I'm going to go use the restroom," Alex smiled as she tried to discretely shift her jeans away from her throbbing wet center. "How about if you surprise me this time?"

"Sounds good," Olivia nodded.

Alex nodded and murmured, "I'll be right back then."

"You got anything El?" Olivia muttered into her mic as she slid up to the bar and ordered a couple beers for her and Alex.

"Nobody's really stood out from our positions," Elliot answered. "How's it going in there?"

"Like you couldn't hear for yourself," Olivia ground out as she paid the bartender and grabbed their beers.

"Sounded like she was enjoying herself as much as you were," Elliot replied honestly.

Olivia appreciated the way her partner had refrained from teasing her about Alex. "Thanks El. It seemed that way to me too. I'm going to go find her and maybe we'll make a circuit of the dance floor and see what we can see."

"Sounds good partner," Elliot answered. "Fin's in the alley like we'd discussed earlier and I'm out front in the pervert van if you need me."

"Thanks," Olivia smiled.

Alex studied her appearance in the mirror above the sinks as she washed her hands, pleased with the slight flush that she saw was tinting her cheeks.

"Benson looks good on you Cabot," she whispered to herself and smiled at her reflection before reaching toward the automatic paper towel dispenser and drying her hands.

She left the bathroom with one last quick look to make sure her hair looked good and was a few steps back into the thriving club when she was bumped into.

"Crap, sorry," the man smiled down at her. "Hey, I'm Chase."

Alex nodded. "Alex."

"You want to dance?"

"Thank you, but, no," Alex smiled apologetically. "I'm here with my girlfriend," she said, delivering the line she was supposed to – and secretly hoping that sometime soon it would be the truth.

"Your girlfriend," he chuckled softly to himself. "Of course."

"I'm sorry, why 'of course'?" Alex asked.

"Because all the hot girls nowadays have girlfriends," he answered with a shrug.

"Liv, it sounds like Alex has a live one," Stabler's voice crackled in Olivia's ear.

"I see her," Olivia murmured and immediately began threading through the crowd toward Alex, keeping a careful eye on the blonde who was talking to a guy who actually fit the general description of their rapist. As she got closer she could see that he was fit, good looking, with shaggy brown hair and warm chocolate eyes. He didn't look like a predator, but she'd learned early on that most of the time they never do.

"Hey baby," she drawled as she slid in behind Alex and handed the blonde one of the beers.

"Hey," Alex looked over and smiled. "This is … I'm sorry, I forgot your name," she laughed.

"Chase," he held his hand out toward Olivia. "Chase Walker."

"I'm running the name now Liv," Elliot's voice crackled in her ear.

"Olivia Benson," Olivia shook his hand and smiled, noting the small flicker of anger in his eyes as she told him her name.

"Well," he looked around himself, "I guess I should leave you two alone now. Have a nice evening, nice to meet you."

"And you," Alex nodded.

Olivia waited until he was out of earshot before muttering into her mic, "Anything El?"

"Nothing Liv, sorry."

"Damn," Olivia hissed and lifted her bottle to her lips.

They spent another hour doing the pretend-date thing, drinking and dancing but never regaining the fiery intensity of their first dance of the evening. Olivia noted how Alex quite appropriately received a lot of attention and lingering looks from the other patrons, but was not approached directly again – even when she separated from Olivia.

"Look Liv," Alex groaned as she dropped into an empty chair beside the brunette. "I'm beat. I was in court all morning and had the unparalleled joy of providing Liz's afternoon entertainment in my office this afternoon," she smiled as she caught Olivia's interested expression. " No, I'm not going to explain that. And now I'm tired and I want to go to bed. How much longer do we need to stay here?"

"Go ahead and get out of there Liv," Elliot yawned into his mic. "I'll tell Fin to head on out now too."

"We can go now," Olivia grabbed Alex's hand. "Thanks for coming out with me tonight."

"Anytime," Alex smiled softly. "All you have to do is ask."

"I'll remember that," Olivia murmured as she wrapped a protective arm around the blonde's shoulders.

"I'm hoping you will," Alex yawned.

They exited the club to an empty street and turned to walk the short distance to where Elliot had parked the van. Alex leaned into Olivia's warm embrace, savoring the heat pouring off of the detective, as they stepped off the curb to cross the street. They were both tired from the long week and the unexpected overtime that evening that they failed to notice that they were being followed.

"I had a good time tonight," Alex smiled at Olivia. "Circumstances notwithstanding, this was still one of the best nights out I've had in quite a while."

"Well, I'm glad you had fun," Olivia smiled and squeezed the blonde affectionately.

"Hello again," a familiar voice interrupted their private exchange.

They both turned to find Chase Walker standing only a few meters behind them.

"Hello," Alex answered warily. "Do you need help with something?"

"Yes," he grinned, the expression devoid of any warmth. "You are exactly what can help me out tonight."

Olivia was reaching behind her for the gun tucked into the back of her pants when they turned, but she hesitated to pull the weapon in case he wasn't a threat – she and Alex were the unit's best bet to flush their suspect out and she didn't want to go flashing her gun and shield unless it was necessary.

Unfortunately it was entirely necessary, and she paid for her hesitation.

Before Alex could comprehend what was happening there was the distinctive pop of a gunshot and Olivia was down on the ground. She'd barely begun to process what she was witnessing when she felt a strong hand grip her shoulder and spin her around as a thick forearm wrapped around her neck.

In the van down the street Elliot ripped his headset off at the first cacophonous boom of the gunshot and was barreling out the twin doors at the back of the vehicle and flying down the street toward Olivia and Alex. Fists pumping and feet flying, he tore down the street like the horsemen of the Apocalypse were chasing him. He saw a man dragging Alex down into an alley between two buildings, her feet kicking wildly at the air and her hands wrapped around the arm crushing her throat.

He ripped his gun from its holster as he dropped to one knee to check quickly on his partner. Olivia was having none of his concern though, instead yelling and waving at him with her one good arm to get his ass moving to go after Alex. He stood and started running after Alex again, leaving the angry brunette struggling to get to her feet in his wake.

He turned the corner at a flat sprint, his keen detective's eyes noting the struggling bodies at the end of the dark alley. The man had Alex bent over a trash can and he was working on getting her jeans down over her hips. Alex looked like she was putting up a good fight which was doing a good job slowing her attacker down until he lost patience with her and punched her in the side of her head.

Elliot felt a wave of bile flood his mouth as he watched the blonde's thin frame drop like a weight after the vicious punch and he leveled the sights of his gun on the man's back as he slowed to steady his aim – the last thing he wanted to do was hit Alex by mistake.

"NYPD," he bellowed as he lined up his shot. "Place your hands on the back of your head and step away from the woman."

He watched the man's shoulders tense and could see the way his grip on Alex's hips tightened before he shoved her aside. Elliot fought the urge to watch Alex as he held his gun steady on the blonde's attacker.

"Drop the gun," he ordered, taking a careful step toward the man. "It's over. Drop your weapon."

"You heard him fuck head," Olivia growled threateningly as she slowly rounded the corner to the alley, her own service weapon held steady in her off hand and leveled at the man. "Drop your goddamn gun."

Part of her hoped that he would refuse so she could shoot him with a clean conscience.

Seeing that he was outnumbered and outgunned, he dropped his gun and set his hands on top of his head.

"Fuck," Olivia groaned as she dropped to the street and leaned back against a dirty brick wall as she watched her partner cuff and frisk Alex's attacker.

"Fuck him!" Olivia yelled once she saw the rapist cuffed. She pulled a ragged breath through gritted teeth as she felt the dark waves of unconsciousness threatening. She summoned the last of her strength and screamed at her partner with her last conscious breath, "For the love of God Stabler, check on Alex!"

Part 2

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