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Olivia looked at her watch as she readjusted her sling for comfort. She was already dressed for court in a pair of simple black trousers and a merlot colored turtleneck sweater that effectively hid the new marks that Alex had left on her neck the night before. Seven fifteen, gonna have to leave soon if Alex wants to stop at the coffee shop before we get to the courthouse, she thought to herself as she glanced down the hall for her tardy lover. "You almost ready to go?" she called out hesitantly. Alex Cabot pre-caffeine was a mixed bag. She could be laid-back or she could be ferocious.
"Nearly done," Alex's melodic alto drifted down the hall in response.
"Well, if you're planning to stop at Starbucks on the way we are going to need to get a move on," Olivia tried again.
"Yeah, yeah, yeah," Alex grumbled as she padded out of the bedroom in her stocking clad feet. She leaned up against the wall for support as she slipped on her heels. "Fine," she grumbled as she stood up straight and smoothed her charcoal pinstripe pencil skirt over her thighs before readjusting her suit jacket. "I'm ready. Let's go," she pecked Olivia on the cheek as she passed by the brunette and headed to the front door. "Have you called a cab?"
Olivia stole another glance at her watch before nodding affirmatively. "It should be here any time now," she assured Alex as she held the blonde's coat out.
"Thank you," Alex smiled as she easily slipped her coat on before throwing open the front door and ushering her Detective out before her.
"You ready?" Olivia asked as she stood in the corridor and waited for Alex to lock up.
"As ready as I'm going to be," Alex smiled and took hold of Olivia's hand, efficiently twining their fingers together. "Thank you for going over those questions with me again last night."
Olivia tugged at Alex's hand and pulled the blonde in close enough for her to nuzzle a pristine alabaster cheek. "You know it wasn't a big deal," she murmured.
"Still," Alex blushed slightly as she pushed in the button that called the elevator car. "Thank you."
"My pleasure," Olivia squeezed Alex's hand reassuringly.
Twenty minutes later Alex and Olivia were sneaking in the back entrance to the courthouse with twin cups of steaming cappuccino. They walked side by side down vacant corridors up to the main level where the meeting rooms were located and ended up to run into Serena and Abbie at the door to room F.
"Good mornin' y'all," Abbie drawled sleepily.
"What happened to not staying up all night doing the horizontal tango?" Alex looked at Serena with an amused expression.
"I just said you two needed to look presentable," Serena countered with a grin. "Which, you do. And, once I get this cup of coffee in me," she held up her white paper cup for emphasis, "I'll be right as rain."
"Well drink up Counselor," Alex smirked. "You two have like ten minutes before you need to get moving."
"Yeah, yeah, yeah," Serena grumbled and Olivia started laughing. "What?" she demanded.
"Déjà vu," Olivia smiled, flashing back to Alex's pout in the apartment hallway this morning. "Don't worry about it."
"You two ready?" Serena asked, her gaze never wavering from Alex's face.
Alex nodded. "We're good. Ran through everything a couple times last night after dinner and then we turned in early."
"We went to bed early too," Abbie grinned.
"Yeah, but we actually went to sleep at a reasonable hour," Olivia countered.
"Who said we didn't Detective Turtleneck?" Abbie argued.
"The dark circles under your eyes and the faint aroma of chocolate that is rolling off you."
"Damn it Serena," Abbie muttered as she pulled her hair over to her nose for a sniff. "You said that you shampoo would hide the smell of the chocolate sauce."
Alex and Olivia laughed loudly at that. "Abs, I hate to break it to you," Alex placed a well-meaning hand on her friend's arm. "But if the chocolate sauce got into your hair you were doing something wrong."
"Who says?" Abbie smirked. "Maybe we were ,"
"Okay, okay, we're bordering on too much information here peeps," Serena interrupted Alex and Abbie's playful banter with an embarrassed laugh. "Let's just all drink our coffee like civilized adults and enjoy these last few minutes of tranquility before the circus starts."
Five minutes later Serena checked her watch and sighed. "Alright Olivia," she stood and carelessly slung her satchel over her shoulder. "Ready to go do this?"
Olivia nodded and looked over at Alex who tried her best to smile reassuringly. "Do good babe, I'll see you when you're done," Alex murmured as she leaned in and quickly kissed the brunette goodbye.
"See you in two point five," Olivia replied cockily. "Abs, take care of her?"
"You know I will," Abbie nodded. "Don't worry about Alex, you just go in there and nail his balls to the wall."
"Alright," Olivia grinned and pulled Alex into as fierce of an embrace as she could manage. "I love you," she whispered against the shell of the blonde's ear before turning on her heel and striding out the door.
Alex nodded wordlessly and squeezed Olivia tightly before reluctantly letting go. "Love you too," she murmured quietly at the already disappearing form of her lover.
"She'll be fine Alex," Abbie placed a reassuring hand on her friend's shoulder "C'mon kiddo," she tugged gently at Alex's arm. "Let's have us a seat and try and find some way to entertain ourselves without the beautiful distractions of our better halves."
Serena watched impassively as Olivia was sworn in, waiting a few extra moments to allow the brunette to settle herself into the witness chair comfortably before she began . "Could you please state your name and occupation for the court?"
"Olivia Benson, Detective with the Sixteenth Precinct, Special Victims Unit."
"Detective Benson, the court has already heard testimony from your partner Detective Stabler regarding your unit's decision to execute an undercover operation on the night in question. Were you in agreement with Detective Stabler that such an operation was the best method to attempt to catch the rapist?"
"I was," Olivia answered.
"Detective Stabler also testified to the fact that the unit felt that ADA Cabot was the unit's best option to put into the club as 'bait'," she highlighted the word with little air quotes. "Is that correct?"
"Was that your assessment as well?"
"I agreed with the other members of my unit that ADA Cabot did, indeed, fit the profile extremely well."
"Tall, blonde, blue eyes, successful," Olivia rattled off the common characteristics of all the victims.
"I understand that 'successful' was a commonality between the victims, but why would you think that ADA Cabot exhibited this trait? It's not like it's something that gets tattooed to your forehead or anything."
Olivia smiled. "Successful people hold themselves differently. There's an air of confidence that can't be ignored or faked."
"And ADA Cabot has this?"
"Was there any other reason you and your squad elected to enlist the assistance of ADA Cabot?"
"All of the victims wore glasses. ADA Cabot also wears glasses, and she fit the physical profile she was the perfect fit."
"So who was sent to enlist ADA Cabot's assistance in this matter?"
"We're friends, and the guys all agreed that she would be more willing to do it if I were the one to ask."
"Why is that? Does she not get along with the other detectives?"
"It's not that, the entire squad has an excellent rapport with ADA Cabot. I was sent because of the nature of the assignment."
Serena nodded as she clarified, "The assignment being assuming the role of a lesbian for the evening?"
"Yes," Olivia answered, her gaze professionally steady. "As she was going to have to accompany me into the club, it was decided that I should be the one to ask for her help."
"And did she agree?"
"She did." And in spite of everything that happened it was one of the best nights of my life.
"What happened once you and ADA Cabot were inside the club?"
"She went to get us a couple drinks, and I did a quick inspection of the interior of the club to get an idea of the layout. Where the bathrooms were, if there were any back exits out of the club, etcetera. When I finished I met back up with ADA Cabot and we decided to try and draw attention to her by dancing."
Because I made a crack about asking her to dance when I was done feeling her up at her apartment and the way she looked at me was enough to get me wet right then and there, so when she confronted me at the club with those stormy blue eyes I was helpless to do anything but follow her out onto the floor. "We'd decided before we entered the club that it was a better way to be seen than standing off to the side like a couple of wallflowers," Olivia explained.
"Did it work?"
"There were definitely people watching us dance," Olivia nodded. "I think it's safe to say we put on a pretty good show. Once the song was over ADA Cabot went to use the restroom and I went to get us a couple drinks."
"Did anybody approach you?"
"Not me, but ADA Cabot was approached as she was leaving the restroom."
"And how did you know this?"
"She was wearing a wire. Detective Stabler notified me when he heard her talking to a man outside the restroom."
"And what happened then?" Serena asked, pausing momentarily at the railing separating the witness stand from the rest of the courtroom.
"I quickly found ADA Cabot and assumed my role as her girlfriend."
"Why?" Serena asked as she pushed off of the railing and resumed her position a few feet away from the jury box.
"If the man who approached her was the rapist, I didn't want him dragging her out the emergency exit that was located next to the bathrooms."
"I see. And who was the gentleman that approached ADA Cabot?"
Olivia nodded at the defense table. "Mister Walker, the defendant."
"What did the defendant do once you arrived at ADA Cabot's side?"
"He quickly excused himself and wished us a pleasant evening."
Serena nodded and walked Olivia through the remainder of their evening inside the club, covering what they did, what they saw, etc., up until the time they decided to call it a night and leave.
"What happened after you and ADA Cabot left the club?"
"We headed down the street toward the car that was parked behind the surveillance van and were quickly approached by Mister Walker."
"No," Olivia shook her head. "ADA Cabot asked him if there was anything he needed help with and he responded with something about her being exactly the kind of help he needed."
Now for the big stuff, Serena thought as she clasped her hands behind her back. "Did you pull your service weapon when he approached you?"
"No. I didn't pull my gun and shield in case he was just some punk loser who wanted to harass us. I didn't want word to get out that we were cops in case we needed to go back to try again , so I hesitated."
Serena nodded as if that were the most logical answer in the world and that the jury would be stupid to believe otherwise. "And what happened."
"He shot me," she waved at her injured shoulder with her good hand for emphasis. "And then he grabbed ADA Cabot and started dragging her down the street toward an alley."
Serena cocked her head to the side and paused for effect before asking, "Do you remember what happened next?"
"Detective Stabler paused to check on me and I sent him after Alex," Olivia answered. "He took off at a sprint and I managed to get to my feet and follow."
"Even having been shot?" Serena asked, arching a perfectly sculpted brow for emphasis.
His arm around her throat, the fear in her eyes. "I was more concerned for ADA Cabot's safety," Olivia shrugged her one good shoulder.
"What happened once you caught up with your partner?"
"I saw ADA Cabot falling to the ground, lifeless, and heard Detective Stabler demanding Mister Walker drop his weapon and surrender. I echoed those commands and Mister Walker wisely chose to follow our directions."
"What happened next?" Serena asked as she turned to return to her position in front of the prosecution's table.
"I'm not sure," Olivia answered honestly. "I passed out and next thing I knew I was in the hospital and had already had surgery to repair the damage the gunshot did to my shoulder."
"Thank you Detective Benson," Serena smiled. "No more questions Your Honor."
"How do you think it's going?" Alex asked Abbie as she set the crossword puzzle she'd been working on down.
Abbie put her own puzzle aside and looked at her friend. "I'm sure she's doing great Alex. Serena's probably just walking her through everything that happened this case is pretty airtight, you know it'll be fine."
"I'm more concerned about what Trevor is going to try and pull on her on cross," Alex admitted softly. "She was absolutely terrified of his being able to make her come out on the stand."
Abbie nodded her understanding as she arched her back and stretched languidly. "From what Serena told me of the proceedings yesterday, I don't think Brennan is going to let Langan get too far on the sexuality attack. Ser said he shut it down hard and fast yesterday when Langan tried it."
"Detective Benson," Trevor began his cross from his seat behind the defense table. "Surely there are tall blonde police officers who would have been a better choice to use in this undercover assignment, why did you and your unit insist on approaching ADA Cabot for assistance?"
Olivia stared at Langan and shrugged. "We were short on time and she was our best option."
"So, it wasn't because of any romantic feelings that you might have for the ADA?"
Olivia flicked her eyes to Serena who looked ready to jump up and object and shook her head infinitesimally. "No, it was not," she turned her attention back to Langan. "We had just learned about the club's Blonde Bombshell Night that afternoon and needed to quickly find somebody who fit the profile that we could trust."
"Surely there was a police officer trained in such maneuvers that you could have used in a pinch?"
"While I'm sure it would sell a lot of calendars if we were to take a page from the FDNY, but unfortunately the NYPD is not overflowing with blonde bombshells," Olivia replied evenly. "We were in a time crunch and ADA Cabot was our best option. As an officer of the court she was fully aware of what her consent to participate in the operation meant and she was in no way tricked or fast talked into such a predicament."
"So you convinced ADA Cabot to accompany you to the club as your 'date' for the evening?" Trevor shot back.
"It's impossible to convince ADA Cabot of anything she doesn't believe in," Olivia smiled mockingly at the attorney. Stupid prick, you know that better than anybody. "She consented to assist with all aspects of the operation."
"You two looked like you were enjoying yourselves on the dance floor," Trevor observed. "You definitely knew how to dance with each other is that because you've done it before?"
"I'm sorry, I don't understand what you're asking," Olivia frowned.
"Well," Trevor paused theatrically, as if he were trying to gather his thoughts. "I would feel uncomfortable dancing with another man, let alone dancing provocatively with one, but you and ADA Cabot looked anything but uncomfortable on the surveillance tape."
"Objection," Serena called out, her voice bored, her eyes flashing fire. "Is there a question anywhere in this riveting monologue?"
"Get to your point Mister Langan," Brennan advised.
"Do you make it a habit of going to clubs and dancing with women?"
Olivia could only stare in disbelief that Trevor actually tried that line of questioning as Serena jumped to her feet and practically screamed, "Objection! It was already determined by this court that agents in undercover operations are required to play a certain role and that whether or not those agents actually fit that role in real life is irrelevant."
"Sustained," Brennan glared at Trevor. "Mister Langan, I suggest you refrain from attempting to put sexuality be it real, perceived, or hopeful daydreams on trial in my courtroom."
"Yes your honor," Trevor nodded, quickly jumping through the evening's events to the end. Not like I have anything else to try now anyways. "Detective Benson, did you witness my client striking ADA Cabot in the alley?"
"No I did not, I arrived as he was throwing her down onto the ground," Olivia replied.
"No more questions Your Honor," Trevor muttered as he dismissed Olivia by turning his back to the witness stand and returning to his seat at his table.
"Redirect?" Judge Brennan looked over at Serena.
"Not at this time Your Honor, the prosecution reserves the right to recall Detective Benson in the future should such a line of questioning be required."
"Granted," Brennan nodded. "The court will adjourn for a brief recess. We will meet back up in fifteen minutes."
"How did it go?" Alex asked, jumping to her feet to gather Olivia in her arms as her lover and Serena entered the meeting room.
"Pretty well," Serena replied as she dropped her satchel onto the floor and stood behind Abbie. "He was actually doing a decent job trying to distract the jury with why SVU used Alex instead of a trained police officer, but then he went and shot himself in the foot by asking if Olivia made it a habit to dance with women."
"He didn't?" Alex and Abbie gaped.
"He did," Olivia grinned. "Ser shut him down fast after that."
"Helps that Brennan basically threw down the gauntlet about Trevor trying to put sexuality on trial here," Serena smiled victoriously.
"Why did you ask me and not another police officer?" Alex turned her attention to Olivia, who blushed.
"The guys were doing me a favor," she shrugged.
"Please tell me you didn't give that answer on the stand," Abbie groaned.
"She didn't," Serena chuckled. "I thought she sold it well, myself. So, Ms. Cabot," she turned her attention to Alex. "You ready for your turn as the center of attention of this circus?"
"I guess," Alex shrugged.
"Knock 'em dead Counselor," Olivia smiled and kissed Alex's cheek quickly.
"I shall do my best Detective," Alex smiled as she turned to follow Serena back into the courtroom.
"So whattaya wanna do to pass the time Detective?" Abbie drawled as the door closed behind Alex and Serena.
"I dunno," Olivia answered as she sat down in the chair recently vacated by Alex. "What did you and Alex do?"
"Crosswords," Abbie replied with a grimace. "No fun at all. Wanna play Truth or Dare?"
"Truth or dare," Olivia repeated, an amused smile tweaking her lips.
"Well," Abbie shrugged. "I'd say we could play Never Have I Ever, but it's no fun with only two people and we aren't allowed to drink in here."
"Fine, do your worst Carmichael," Olivia chuckled. "Truth."
"Could you please state your name and occupation for the court?" Serena requested as she stood imperiously behind the prosecution's table.
"Alexandra Cabot, Assistant to the District Attorney, assigned to prosecute cases for the Special Victims Unit, sixteenth precinct, New York."
"Detectives Stabler and Benson have already testified about the events of the night in question, but I was wondering if you could explain your reasoning for agreeing to assist them with their undercover operation."
"They are my detectives," Alex shrugged. "If they need help making a case, I will always do whatever is in my power to help them."
"And going undercover with Detective Benson was one such decision in your power?"
"It was," Alex nodded.
"Weren't you afraid of the idea of being put out as bait?" Serena frowned as she slowly rounded the table to stand in front of the witness' box she wanted Alex's attention on her and only her from here on out.
"A little," Alex confessed. "But the detectives have orchestrated several such undercover assignments during the time that I've been their prosecutor and they always follow protocol. I knew I would be as safe as anyone else could be in such a situation."
"But, as the defense has pointed out, you are not a trained police officer. Why agree to do it?"
Because Olivia looked at me with those big brown eyes and asked me to help her, them, out and I was helpless to refuse her. "Because there was somebody out there raping women and I felt that it was worth the risk to try and catch him before he could hurt anybody else."
Serena nodded theatrically and offered Alex a small encouraging smile before she continued with her line of questioning, walking Alex through preparations, the trip to the club, as well as her initial observations once they were inside.
"And Detective Benson and yourself agreed before you had ever entered the club to dance?"
"We did," Alex nodded.
"Did you notice anybody paying particular attention to you two while you were dancing?"
"No. Nobody in particular."
"And after the song finished what did you do?"
"I needed to use the restroom and Detective Benson went to get us a couple drinks."
"Did anybody approach you when you were either entering or exiting the club's restrooms?"
"The defendant approached me as I was exiting them."
Serena nodded encouragingly before she set to work walking Alex through her conversation with Walker, Olivia's appearance and his disappearance. She easily led Alex through the remainder of the night's activities inside the club, the blonde answering with a precision honed by years of asking questions herself, and then they got down to the questions that Serena knew Alex would dislike the most.
"So what happened after you and Detective Benson were approached again by Mister Walker outside the club?"
"I asked him if there was something we could help him."
"And his response?"
"Something about me being exactly what he needed," Alex replied, allowing her voice to soften slightly.
"What happened next?"
"It was kind of a blur," Alex frowned. "There was a gunshot and I saw Detective Benson fall to the ground but before I could really get a good look at her the defendant had wrapped his arm around my neck," she lifted her left hand towards her throat, "and he started dragging me down the street toward an alley."
"Did you fight back?"
Alex nodded. "I tried. I scratched at the arm around my neck, trying to pull it away so I could breath it was really hard to breath, and whenever he lifted me up off my feet I kicked backwards at his legs trying to hit his knees. I missed every time."
"Was the defendant saying anything to you while he was dragging you down the alley?"
Alex nodded. "Yes. He kept making derisive comments about how he was 'going to fuck me straight' and that my 'little cunt bitch whore of a girlfriend' wasn't half the man he was."
"He told me that all I 'needed was a good deep dicking to make me better'," Alex replied evenly.
"And what happened once he got you down the alleyway?"
"He pushed me over a trashcan and began trying to pull down my jeans," Alex answered.
"Did he succeed?"
"The doctors told me no."
"You didn't know?"
"He punched me in the face and I was knocked unconscious," Alex explained, waving at the bruised side of her face for emphasis.
"No more questions Your Honor," Serena nodded at the judge.
"Mister Langan," Brennan drawled in a somewhat threatening tone. "Your witness."
"Thank you Your Honor," Trevor offered Brennan a smarmy smile as he pushed himself up from his chair. "Ms. Cabot, you mentioned that you volunteered to help because 'your detectives' asked you to, is that correct?"
"Yes it is," Alex answered and had to fight the urge to cross her arms over her chest and glare at the defense attorney.
"That is quite an admirable level of dedication for a public servant. You also agreed that dancing with Detective Benson would be an optimal way to draw attention to yourself as the so-called bait?"
"It certainly seems to have captured your attention Counselor," Alex retorted.
"Your Honor," Trevor turned and whined to Judge Brennan.
"Ms. Cabot, you are not in my courtroom as a prosecutor this morning I suggest you answer the defense counsel's questions in a respectful manner no matter what you think of him personally."
Alex had to bite the inside of her cheek to keep from laughing. This is the first time I've gotten a metaphorical high-five from a judge for being a smart-ass. "Yes sir, I'm sorry Your Honor."
Brennan nodded and turned his attention back to the now openly gaping defense attorney. "You may repeat your question Counselor."
"Um," Trevor murmured. "Yes. Okay. So you agreed with Benson that dancing was a good way to draw attention to yourself?"
"Yes," Alex replied, her voice saccharine. "Detective Benson and myself agreed that it would be more beneficial to achieving our desired objective if we were seen together on the dance floor."
The jury most likely didn't notice, but Alex saw Trevor flinch slightly at her stress on Olivia's title. "You and Detective Benson danced pretty well together."
"She's an excellent dancer," Alex replied breezily, choosing to ignore the fact that Trevor's statement hadn't been a question.
"I'm sure she is. You were looking rather impressive yourself, do you have any formal training?"
"Objection," Serena called out, half amused and half exasperated that Trevor still would not let the goddamn dancing thing go. "Relevance?"
"I'm simply inquiring as to whether or not Ms. Cabot possessed a specialized skill set that would have made her a viable asset to the operation," Trevor shrugged with a good ol' boy smile on his face.
Brennan looked down at Alex who just smiled serenely up at him. He arched a brow questioningly and she shrugged, indicating that she didn't mind the question.
"I'll allow it," Brennan informed the court. "But be warned Mister Langan, you are on extremely thin ice."
"Yes Your Honor," Trevor almost bowed. "Ms. Cabot? Any specialized dance training?"
"The usual childhood requirements tap, ballet, jazz," Alex smiled.
"I see, so it was from that skill set that you felt competent to assist in the undercover operation?"
Alex chuckled and shook her head no. "The dancing you saw on that video is definitely not covered in any traditional disciplines."
"Where did you learn it then?"
Alex saw Serena was about ready to object so she answered quickly, wanting to see Trevor's reaction more than she wanted the jury to hear again that he had no basis for the line of questioning he was pursuing. "I learned the majority of those moves at my pole dancing class."
Serena, who had been annoyed by Trevor's idiocy, had to fight back a bark of laughter at Alex's answer and she dearly wished she was up by the witness stand so she could see Trevor's face.
"Pole dancing class," Trevor repeated dumbly.
"Yes," Alex replied helpfully. "It's a great work-out. Fun, as well. Lots of core work, I highly recommend it."
"Ms. Cabot," Brennan tried to glare impressively and failed miserably. "Please keep your opinion as to the benefits of such exercise classes to yourself."
"I apologize Your Honor," Alex smiled sweetly.
"Did you mislead my client in any way when you spoke with him outside the restrooms inside the club?" Trevor changed his tack.
"In what way do you mean?" Alex sought clarification, not willing to walk into a verbal trap.
"Did you tell him you were a lesbian?"
Alex smiled and shook her head no. "No I did not."
"Detective Benson said, on the record, that she interrupted your conversation with Mister Walker I believe her exact words were," he quickly strode over to his table and skimmed the legal pad he had been taking notes on, "assuming her role as your girlfriend."
Alex nodded. "That sounds about right."
"So you're saying that you told my client that you were a lesbian?"
"No," Alex smiled patronizingly. "I'm saying that I told him I was there with my girlfriend, but I never used the word lesbian in any conversation no matter how brief with your client."
Trevor looked ready to press the issue but Judge Brennan cleared his throat softly and shook his head in warning. "You said that Mister Walker approached yourself and Detective Benson after you had left the club?"
"That is correct," Alex nodded.
"And after Detective Benson was shot he grabbed you and dragged you down into an alleyway?"
"And he struck you on the face, knocking you unconscious?"
"Did you do anything to provoke Mister Walker?"
"Objection," Serena stood for emphasis.
Brennan frowned but decided to allow Langan the rope needed to hang himself. "I'll allow it."
"Ms. Cabot?" Trevor arched a brow questioningly. "Did you provoke my client?"
"Does telling him that the tampon in his pants wasn't enough to fuck anyone properly let alone straight count?" Alex replied evenly.
A couple jurors nodded approvingly and there was a quiet murmur of appreciation at the blonde ADA's boldness that rolled through the courtroom at her response.
"Order," Brennan banged his gavel a couple times for emphasis. "This is not Judge Judy people, you do not get to voice your approval or disapproval of the witness' testimony."
A couple of jurors looked down in embarrassment but most just smirked at Langan, almost as if they were daring the attorney to try something like that again.
Trevor, correctly reading the jury's mood, decided to cut his losses and dismiss Alex. "No more questions, Your Honor."
"No redirect," Serena replied with a confident grin. "The People rest, Your Honor."
"Your Honor, the defense requests a recess in order to prepare for our witnesses."
"Denied," Brennan glowered at Trevor. "The defense specifically requested a speedy trial, so a speedy trial you shall receive. We will take a break for lunch and court will reconvene at one o'clock on the dot. The defense will be ready to present its witnesses then."
"Yes, Your Honor," Trevor nodded his understanding.
"Court is adjourned," Brennan announced with an authoritative tap of his gavel as he stood and quickly disappeared into his chambers behind the bench.
"Oh no! Nononononono!" Olivia argued loudly. "No. No way Carmichael!"
"Oh-liv-ia," Abbie sang merrily, "you chose truth the last three times and the generally agreed upon universal rules of Truth or Dare dictate that you cannot choose truth four times in a row. So, you have to have a dare now and that's your dare. You can't change how the game is played!"
"Abbie, I've shared more with you this morning than I have with Alex you can't honestly expect me to do that!"
Olivia and Abbie were so focused on their argument that neither of them noticed when the door to meeting room F swung open to allow their better halves a front row seat to their argument.
"What's going on?" Alex leaned back and whispered into Serena's ear.
"I think Abbie managed to talk Olivia into playing Truth or Dare," Serena whispered back.
"Nuh uh," Abbie shook her head emphatically. "That's your dare Benson nut up and do it."
"Abbie," Olivia groaned. "I've told you my wildest sexual fantasy, I've dictated a letter to Penthouse as to why Alex should be their centerfold, I've given you a goddamn lap dance you can't hold me to this one!"
"Lap dance?" Serena murmured in Alex's ear.
"Wildest sexual fantasy?" Alex whispered back, her expression indicating that she was clearly very interested in the answer to that one.
"Why you should be the next Penthouse centerfold?" Serena countered softly.
"Hey, I'm hot," Alex frowned.
"Yeah, but those magazines all have girls with the king-sized ta-tas and, I hate to break it to you Cabot, but yours are more fun-sized."
"Shut up!" Alex turned to stared down her friend.
Realizing that they were no longer alone Abbie and Olivia looked up with sheepish grins. "Hey baby," they called out simultaneously.
Serena offered Abbie a flirty little finger wave, but Alex was too focused on staring Serena down to acknowledge Olivia's greeting.
"Fun sized?" she seethed. "I know I'm not huge but, but "
"Alex baby," Olivia called out softly. "How did it go?"
"Do you think my breasts are fun sized?" Alex turned on her lover.
Olivia bit her lip to try and hold back the laugh that was threatening to break free and quite possibly condemn her to a slow and tortuous death. She turned to Abbie and mouthed, I hate you, before assuring Alex, "Sweetheart, I love your breasts with their cute little pink nipples."
"So you do think they're small?" Alex looked close to tears.
"I will kill you," Olivia murmured to Serena as she gently gathered Alex in her arms. "It will be slow, and painful, and I have a badge so I will get away with it."
"Sorry," Serena mouthed, looking genuinely contrite, before she turned her attention to her own girlfriend. "Abs, we're on a short lunch recess wanna go grab a bite?"
Sensing the complete departure of fun from the room Abbie nodded. "Sounds good, you know what I could really go for?"
"Barbeque?" Serena asked with a teasing glint in her eye.
"I knew there was a reason I loved you," Abbie drawled. "To The Ranch!" she called out dramatically as she led the way down the hall.
Olivia stuck her leg out and kicked the door closed. "Alex, baby?" she murmured softly against her lover's temple. "You okay?"
"Your pulse is racing," Alex replied, her voice sure and steady, a marked contrast to her earlier near-hysterics. "You okay?"
"I'm not the one having a near hysterical break-down over the size of my breasts," Olivia frowned.
"While the fun sized comment was hurtful," Alex murmured against Olivia's neck. "I was more trying to get you out of whatever dare Carmichael had dreamed up for you to complete. If they thought that they combined to make me that upset and then left you to deal with the fallout, they'll probably let you go."
"So you weren't mad?" Olivia breathed a sigh of relieve.
"I wasn't really mad," Alex confessed. "I happen to like my body just the way it is."
"I like your body too," Olivia smiled, relieved that Alex wasn't really upset. "Should we go get some lunch?"
"Yeah," Alex nodded. "I told Serena that we'd be in my office this afternoon waiting out the remainder of the trial. Trevor only has a few witnesses to call and none of them should be on the stand long so we're expecting this thing to wrap this afternoon," she informed Olivia as they meandered down the hall toward the bank of elevators that would take them down to the Judge's entrance.
"Okay," Olivia nodded. "What do you want to do for lunch?"
"I'm easy," Alex winked. "What was the dare that you so did not want to do?"
"Ahhh, baby, c'mon," Olivia whined.
"Not happening Detective," Alex smiled. "If I managed to get you out of it, which is still a pretty big if because Abbie traditionally does not back down from a dare once it's been issued, I deserve to know what it was."
"Fine," Olivia groaned as she put her hand over the elevator door to make sure that it didn't close on Alex. "You know that scene in Top Gun when they're all in the bar," she started to explain after the doors had closed and they were alone.
"Where Maverick sings to woo the girl?" Alex asked.
"Yeah. Well, see, Abbie dared me to be Maverick and she was going to be Goose and I was going to have to serenade you at McMullen's."
"Wow," Alex nodded her appreciation for her friend's creativity. "That's good, even by Carmichael standards. But, wouldn't I be better cast as Ice Man? I am the Ice Queen, after all."
"You are not an Ice Queen," Olivia argued. "You're warm and gooey and delicious."
"Why thank you Detective," Alex purred. "I think. But I still want to hear about that sexual fantasy maybe later when we're alone in my office?"
Olivia almost tripped over her own feet in surprise. Damn, just how long were they standing there?! "Uhhhhm, okay?"
"And I better be the one in it," Alex lectured playfully.
"Oh, you are," Olivia assured her.
"On a scale from one to ten," Abbie asked as she took a sip of her iced tea, "exactly how pissed would you say Alex was back there?"
"Hard to tell," Serena frowned, looking around the dining room of Abbie's favorite barbeque joint as she thought her answer through carefully. "Usually she doesn't bite at a jab like that, but she's a little raw with the assault and having to testify I'd say probably a seven or an eight."
"That's what I was thinking too," Abbie nodded as she broke open a roll and dipped it into a plate of barbeque sauce. "Think I should let Benson out of her dare?"
"What was the dare?" Serena asked as she, too, reached for a garlic roll from the basket in the middle of the table.
"You know that scene in Top Gun when they're all in the bar and Maverick sings?
"So who does Trevor have on tap to call this afternoon?" Olivia asked as she leaned back in the plush maroon leather booth.
"Some guy who works with Walker, the nurse from the hospital, and Abbie," Alex shrugged.
"I would think he'd call more witnesses in his guy's defense."
"Why?" Alex shook her head as she folded her menu and set it down on the table. "He was caught in the act of committing a felony by an NYPD Detective and his DNA matched samples recovered from three other rape victims. I'm surprised Trevor doesn't just throw his hands up and wave a little white flag in surrender."
Serena laughed. "I can't believe you would even consider letting Olivia be Maverick! Wasn't that your nickname when you were in the DA's office up here?"
Abbie nodded. "Yeah, but can't you just see Benson singing, Alex blushing and being all embarrassed, and all the cops in the joint joining in? It'd be classic!"
"It would," Serena agreed with a laugh. "You going to let her out of it?"
"I dunno," Abbie shrugged. "Do you think I should?"
"Depends," Serena wiped her hands off on her napkin before resting her chin in them. "How good of a lap dancer was she?"
"Oh baby," Abbie drawled. "That girl is not made to do the lap dance. Yours are way better, don't worry."
"That's good," Serena smiled. "I guess Alex does the lap dancing in their burgeoning relationship. Did you know she takes pole dancing exercise classes?"
"Yeah," Abbie grinned. "I'm the one who told her about 'em. Great for your core and upper body strength. Why, how did you find out about that?"
"It might have come up when she was on the stand this morning," Serena smirked.
"Oh, now I know this is good, do tell!"
"God I'm full," Olivia groaned as she dropped her stained napkin onto her plate. "I can't believe you ordered a chicken salad here, Jerry's has the best pastrami sandwiches."
Alex set her fork down beside her plate and smiled. "Am I supposed to apologize for ordering a healthy lunch instead of a fat filled sandwich?"
Olivia pouted. "I'll have you know that the pastrami is extremely lean here."
"I'm sure," Alex smirked, but was interrupted from her teasing by the beep of her phone.
"What is it?" Olivia grumbled as she lifted her glass to take a long drink of Coke.
"Text from Abbie," Alex told her lover. "They just walked into court now," she glanced at her watch. "Wow, this hour has gone by really fast."
"Should we be getting back?"
"Soon," Alex nodded. "I told Serena we'd hang out at Hogan and wait for her to call and tell us that this thing's been handed off to the jury before coming back down to wait with her and Abbie for the verdict."
"They're not going to go to the tower to wait?"
"Nah," Alex shook her head. "It should be a fast verdict."
Serena glanced quickly at her watch as she waited through Trevor's tedious examination of his first witness. Like anyone really cares that Walker was an Eagle Scout or that he volunteers for a handful of charities through his accounting firm, she thought to herself as she doodled aimlessly on her yellow legal pad.
"Ms. Southerlyn?" Brennan's booming voice brought her attention back to what was happening in the courtroom.
Serena looked up and arched her brows questioningly.
"Would the People care to cross examine this witness?"
"Oh, yes, Your Honor," she stood and purposefully refused to look behind her to where she was sure Abbie was sitting in the gallery trying not to laugh at her lack of concentration. "Mister Travis," she remained standing behind the prosecution's table and addressed the witness. "Did you accompany Mister Walker to Sugarland on the seventh, fourteenth, twenty first, twenty eighth of last month?"
"No I did not."
"So you cannot offer any evidence as to Mister Walkers actions on those nights."
"No I cannot."
"So you don't know about how he subdued and raped three women, shot a decorated NYPD Detective or assaulted an Assistant District Attorney?"
Trevor stood to argue but Serena beat him to the punch.
"Withdrawn," she waved her hand dismissively. "No more questions your honor."
"Mister Travis," Judge Brennan looked down at the witness. "You are free to go, the state of New York thanks you for your time in this matter."
"Thank you sir," Travis muttered as he quickly climbed down from the witness stand and walked as fast as he could down the aisle and out the double doors at the back of the room.
"Next witness Mister Langan?" Brennan prompted.
Trevor nodded and called out, "The defense calls Ms. Heather Finnerty."
At his pronouncement a petite woman in the middle of the gallery stood and made her way up to the witness stand. Everybody watched impassively as she was sworn in, and once she was seated Trevor strolled out to the patch of floor in front of the witness stand and began his line questioning.
"Could you please state your name and occupation for the court?"
"Heather Finnerty, I'm a nurse at Mount Sinai Hospital."
"Your Honor," Serena stood and addressed the court. "May we approach the bench?"
Brennan nodded and Serena and Trevor walked up to the bench but he shook his head no and motioned toward the door leading to his private chambers. Serena and Trevor followed him inside and the second the bailiff pulled the door closed behind them she began her argument.
"Your Honor," Serena addressed the judge. "The People motion for this witness to be dismissed on the grounds that as per section 602 of the Federal Rules of Evidence she is not a viable witness as she does not possess any first-hand knowledge of the events that affected Detective Benson and ADA Cabot. We also file a preemptive motion for Ms. Carmichael to be excused on the same grounds."
"I have called them to comment on what they observed when Ms. Cabot and Detective Benson were hospitalized."
"Nurses are covered under the umbrella of doctor patient privilege," Serena argued.
"I'm not going to ask about treatment or anything else that would fall under that umbrella, just what she was able to observe," Trevor tried again. "Any civilian walking past their room would have been able to look in and see them, and as such her observations do not fall under the scope of doctor patient privilege."
"Why are you calling these women to testify Mister Langan?" Brennan demanded.
"Character witnesses, Your Honor," Trevor replied quickly.
"Neither of these women know your client Mister Langan," Brennan frowned.
"No sir," Trevor agreed. "But they both have had contact with Detective Benson and ADA Cabot."
"So you're going to put these women on the stand to try and discredit a Detective who will be getting another ribbon for heroism and a highly decorated, well respected, Assistant District Attorney."
Trevor nodded. "Yes sir."
"I will give you the rope you need to hang yourself Mister Langan," Brennan informed them. "But be warned you are on very thin ice and I will not hesitate to jail you on contempt charges should you try to put sexuality on trial one more time in my courtroom. Understood?"
"Yes sir," Trevor nodded thankfully and fell into position behind the judge as he led them all back out to the courtroom.
"Ms. Finnerty," Trevor began again. "How long have you been a nurse at Mount Sinai?"
"I see," Trevor nodded. "So, you've pretty much seen it all."
"Did you observe Ms. Cabot and Detective Benson interacting while they were hospitalized?"
"What did you see?"
"Well, Ms. Cabot, she's the blonde one right?" Trevor nodded. "Yes, well Ms. Cabot climbed into bed with Detective Benson and refused to move."
"Is that typical behavior?"
"No," the nurse smiled. "That was definitely a first for me."
"Were Ms. Cabot and Detective Benson assigned to the same room?"
"Not originally. Ms. Cabot started off on a private floor but demanded to be moved into Detective Benson's room once Detective Benson was released from surgery."
"Who authorized the move?"
"The Chief. Ms. Cabot's aunt is on the hospital board and rumor has it that she made the request personally."
"Objection," Serena argued what she could. "Hearsay."
Brennan nodded his agreement. "The jury is to ignore Ms. Finnerty's comment about ADA Cabot's aunt."
Trevor shrugged and tried again. "Were Ms. Cabot and Detective Benson allowed to remain in the same bed?"
"No," the nurse smiled. "Doctor Webber saw them both and ordered Ms. Cabot into her own bed."
"Sounds about right," Trevor nodded as if he actually had a point. "So was that the end of their antics?"
"Well, when I came on for my next shift Ms. Cabot was indeed in her own bed, but it was pushed up right next to Detective Benson's."
"Who moved the bed?"
"The nurses who were on duty at the time told me that her visitors were responsible for the move."
"So would it be safe to say that Ms. Cabot was not a model patient?"
"Objection!" Serena called out, exasperation clear in her tone. "Argumentative!"
"I agree," Brennan scowled at Trevor.
"No more questions Your Honor," Trevor mumbled.
"Ms. Finnerty," Serena stood and addressed the witness. "Were you at the club Sugarland on the night of the twenty eighth?"
"No I was not."
"Did you witness the defendant shooting Detective Benson or assaulting ADA Cabot?"
"No I did not. I only saw them during the time they were hospitalized for their injuries."
Serena nodded. "How many rape and or assault victims have you tended to during your tenure as a nurse at Mount Sinai hospital?"
"A handful. But we don't get a whole lot of them on the surgical floor," she confessed.
"In your opinion, do victims of attempted rape and or assault generally tend to seek comfort from their friends and family?"
"They do," she nodded.
"Thank you," Serena nodded. "No more questions your honor."
"Mister Langan," Brennan looked to Trevor. "Redirect?"
Trevor shook his head no. "No, Your Honor."
"Wonder how it's going?" Olivia mumbled as she reclined on the couch in Alex's office. They'd been back at Hogan for almost half an hour and her full belly from lunch was making her sleepy.
Alex looked up from the screen of her phone and her watch before she replied, "Fast. Abs just texted me that the nurse is done and she's up next."
"Court's only been back in session for what, an hour?" Olivia frowned.
"About that, yeah," Alex nodded.
"The defense calls Abigail Carmichael," Trevor called out, his voice sounding defeated and tired.
Abbie stood and gave Serena a quick smile as she passed the prosecution's table en route to the witness stand. After she was sworn in Trevor started in on his last hail Mary. "Please state your name and occupation for the court.
"Abigail Carmichael, Federal Prosecutor for the US Attorney's office."
Serena had to bite her lip to keep from smiling at the awed murmurs that rolled through the courtroom after Abbie stated her occupation.
"Ms. Carmichael, how do you know Detective Benson and Ms. Cabot?"
"I worked with ADA Cabot for a time here in New York at the District Attorney's office before I accepted a job with the US Attorney's office, and I know Detective Benson from the time that I worked as a prosecutor with the Special Victims Unit."
"You have quite the reputation of the playgirl, have you dated either of them?"
"OBJECTION!" Serena shouted, incensed.
"Sustained," Brennan scowled at Trevor. "Remember our talk Mister Langan, I will not tolerate one more slip from you."
Trevor nodded his understanding. "Ms. Carmichael, were you one of the friends and family who were responsible for moving Ms. Cabot's bed when she was in the hospital?"
"I was," Abbie drawled, a pleased smile tweaking her lips.
"Why did you do that?"
"They asked me to," she shrugged.
"You didn't think that was an odd request?"
"Not at all."
"Really, may I ask why?"
"Sure," Abbie drawled. "When I was raped in college I slept in my roommate's bed for a month after the attack. I was afraid to be alone, the nightmares of the attack were less severe when I knew that I had a friendly body there to protect me."
Trevor could only stare. "I see," he murmured, obviously surprised by Abbie's statement.
"Is there anything else Counselor?" Abbie drawled, arching a brow questioningly as she appraised the flustered attorney with a lopsided smirk.
"Ms. Carmichael," Brennan chastised, but she could see that he was trying his damndest to not smile. "Please remember that you are in this court as a witness and not as a prosecutor. You are to answer questions that are presented to you, not ask ones of your own."
"Of course," Abbie smiled. "I sincerely apologize Your Honor."
"Mister Langan," Brennan looked at Trevor. "Do you have any more questions for this witness?"
"No sir," Trevor shook his head and quickly reclaimed his seat.
"Ms. Southerlyn, would the People like to cross examine this witness?"
Serena smiled brightly. "Oh, I don't think that's necessary your honor," she had to fight to keep from laughing.
Brennan nodded his agreement and turned to Abbie. "Ms. Carmichael, you are excused as a witness in this matter and I sincerely apologize for taking up your valuable time."
"Not a problem," Abbie grinned as she stood and walked jauntily down the aisle between the attorney's tables to reclaim her seat in the gallery.
"Ms. Southerlyn," Judge Brennan turned toward the smiling blonde. "Are the People ready to present their closing argument?"
"We certainly are Your Honor," Serena smiled.
"Very well," he nodded, "You may proceed."
"Holy shit," Alex murmured as she read the newest message on her phone.
"Hmm?" Olivia murmured distractedly as she turned into her lover and nuzzled her face into Alex's stomach.
"God Liv," Alex groaned. "You don't know how hard it's been for me to keep my hands to myself this whole time you've been resting, can you please not start trouble?"
"Sorry," Olivia smiled and moved her lips from Alex's stomach to her crotch. "Better?" She asked playfully, her warm breath sneaking through the thin material of the blonde's skirt to dance teasingly over her skin.
"No," Alex groaned.
Deciding to take pity on her lover Olivia rolled over onto her back to look up into Alex's eyes. "What's going on?"
"I've ruined my panties," Alex grumbled as she shifted her hips somewhat uncomfortably under the brunette's head.
"Well, I'd apologize, but I did tell you earlier how much I wanted to lay you down on your desk and have my evil way with you, so any apology at this point for getting you riled up would be disingenuous."
"And you complain about me sounding like a lawyer," Alex chuckled. "Abbie just texted that they're onto closing arguments now."
Olivia glanced at her watch. "So Abbie was only on the stand for fifteen minutes? Total?"
Alex nodded. "So now you see why my current predicament is not a good one," she threaded her fingers through Olivia's short spiky hair.
"Mmm, I promise to take care of you later," Olivia murmured.
"I'm counting on it Detective," Alex smiled.
"Can I ask you a question?" Olivia captured Alex's left hand with her own.
"What were you thinking about earlier when I was resting?"
"How did you know I was thinking?" Alex asked playfully.
Olivia smiled. "Sometimes, when you're really lost in thought about something, your lips move as you're practicing your argument."
"They do not," Alex frowned.
"They do," Olivia nodded. "But it's okay, I still love you even though you talk to yourself. What were you thinking about that was so serious?"
"If I should ask you something or not," Alex hedged, still undecided as to whether or not she wanted to risk Olivia and their budding relationship to the full onslaught of a Cabot Thanksgiving.
"You can't scare me off," Olivia murmured, moving their joined hands to the spot between her breasts that was directly over her heart.
"Promise?" Alex asked, a small sliver of fear slipping into her tone.
"I swear," Olivia assured her. "In case you hadn't caught on, you're pretty much it for me Cabot so I'm not running off anywhere. What's going on in that beautiful brain of yours?"
"Would you like to come to Massachusetts with me for Thanksgiving?" Alex asked hesitantly. "All the Cabots will be there, so it might be a little overwhelming for you, but I'd really love ."
"Alex, I would be honored to join you and your family for the holiday," Olivia interrupted her lover's rambling.
"Really, really," Olivia smiled.
"Members of the Jury," Judge Brennan addressed the group in the box. "Do you understand these instructions as they've been given to you?"
Twelve heads nodded their understanding.
"Very well," Brennan nodded. "As it is now only three o'clock, I will ask you to adjourn to the jury deliberation room to begin discussions on the charges in this case. If you have any questions or need to review materials, please let the bailiff know and we will do our best to accommodate those needs as expediently as possible."
Serena stood and watched the jurors shuffle out of the room, waiting for the door to close behind them before she gathered her papers, files, and notes to begin putting them away into her satchel.
"So, what's the over under at?" Abbie drawled playfully from behind the banister separating the gallery from the prosecution table.
"An hour?" Serena shrugged.
"I'm taking the under on that one Counselor," Abbie grinned. "I'd better call Alex and tell them to get their asses down her A-SAP," she muttered to herself as she dug her phone out of her pocket and quickly dialed Cabot's cell.
"Are you guys done already?" Alex's surprised voice answered on the first ring.
"Yup," Abbie grinned. "You two should probably put your clothes back on and get down here, we've set the over/under at an hour."
"I'm betting on the under," Alex muttered.
"Exactly, so get that tight pole dancing ass down here Cabot you don't want to miss this one."
"Abbie?" Olivia asked as she sat up.
"Yes," Alex nodded. "The jury has it now, so we'd probably better get down there for the verdict."
Olivia nodded her understanding and stood, carefully running her hand over her trousers to smooth any wrinkles that might have been created from her impromptu siesta. "You ready for this?"
"I'll be ready to get this past us," Alex nodded. "I'd like to just be able to focus on us and not what happened to us."
"Yeah," Olivia nodded. "But, can I tell you something?" she asked as she held the door to the ADA's office open for Alex to leave before her.
"Hmm?" Alex murmured.
"Getting shot," Olivia tilted her head toward her injured shoulder, "was totally worth it to find the courage to finally tell you how I felt."
Alex smiled. "That whole evening was a nice little push to get us to stop dancing around our attraction wasn't it?"
"Indeed it was Counselor," Olivia nodded. "So let's go close this chapter of our lives so we can focus on the future."
"Hey Elliot," Serena smiled as the Detective led the small posse of SVU Detectives into the courthouse. "John, Fin," she nodded at the pair behind him. "No Cragen?"
"Somebody had to stay behind to hold down the fort," Elliot shrugged. "Dad told us to get down here for Liv and to call him as soon as the verdict is in."
"What's the over/under at?" Munch asked.
"An hour," Abbie grinned. "You want in?"
"Sure," Much grinned and pulled out a twenty. "Is anybody taking the over?" he asked before he handed the money over to the grinning brunette.
"Nope," Abbie shook her head.
"Nope what?" Olivia's voice interrupted their playful banter.
"Nothin'," Fin smiled. "How you doing Olivia?"
"Fine Fin," she smiled.
"Ms. Cabot, you are looking as beautiful as always," Munch smiled at his ADA.
Alex blushed and looked down. "Thank you," she murmured but she was saved from further embarrassment by the bailiff who had just emerged from the courtroom.
"Ms. Southerlyn," he cocked his head toward the room. "The jury is back with a verdict."
"How long did it take?" Abbie asked.
"Forty five minutes," Serena grinned. "Let's go get our verdict."
Alex and Olivia stood in the front row of the gallery flanked on their right by Munch and Fin, and on their left by Abbie and Elliot. Serena stood before them, shoulders square to the bench as Judge Brennan accepted the verdict sheet from the jury foreman and glanced at it before handing it back to the bailiff to return to the foreman.
"Has the jury reached a verdict in the case of the People vs. Chase Walker?"
"We have Your Honor," the foreman, a graying professor type with a tweed jacket, replied.
"And what say you on the first count of rape in the first degree?"
"And the charge of illegal possession of a firearm in the first degree?"
"The charge of aggravated assault on a police officer in the first degree?"
"And the single charge of assault in the second degree."
"Does Counsel request a poll?" Brennan asked Langan.
"No, Your Honor," Trevor replied dejectedly.
Brennan nodded and smiled his thanks to the jury. "Ladies and Gentlemen of the jury, let me express my profound thanks to you all for your participation in this matter. The State of New York appreciates your hard work, and you are hereby dismissed from all obligations in relation to this trial. Court is adjourned."
"So," Serena turned and smiled at her friends after the jury had left. "What do you want to do the celebrate?"
"We heard Alex does some pole dancing," Fin smirked.
"Not for you I don't," Alex laughed.
"Let's go over to McMullen's," Abbie grinned. "Detective Benson owes me a song."
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