DISCLAIMER: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and all characters are property of NBC and Dick Wolf.
SERIES: Third in the Defying Gravity series following Fallen and Forgiven.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

By Les Miserables 1998

The path is smooth that leadeth to danger-

The Taming of the Shrew

About a week had passed since Olivia's shooting.

Alex was lost in thought preparing for court when the phone rang.


"I am so bored," came an irritated voice on the other end.

Alex smiled as she thought of Olivia cooped up in her small apartment for nearly a week now.

"I know, sweetheart," Alex offered some encouragement, "But you'll be back soon, no need to rush things."

"What time are you coming over," Olivia was clearly restless.

Alex looked at her watch. It was already almost six o'clock, and she still had a lot to do.

"Maybe another hour, "Alex sighed. "I'll be there as soon as I can, I promise."

"Okay," Olivia whined. "See you soon."

Alex let the dial tone buzz in her ear for a moment before hanging up the phone.

She had been so relieved when Olivia was released from the hospital. She had stayed with her every night since then, too. She loved taking care of the always strong detective for a change. So, what was this nervous feeling in her stomach for the last few days? Was she still getting over the fear of almost losing Olivia, or was she afraid that Elliot might slip up? That he might accidentally mention her relationship with Olivia? But why worry? After all, she had made the decision to tell Elliot. She had said the words first… "I'm in love with Olivia…"

Alex's thoughts continued to drift…

They had been together almost six months now, everything going so smoothly. Neither had ever broached the subject of being open about the relationship. They knew how the other felt, didn't they? Then, Olivia caught Alex off guard one night, and suggested that they open up to at least Elliot. Alex had squashed the idea immediately. Then…Olivia was shot…and Alex was the one who decided to tell Elliot everything. She knew she could trust him though, couldn't she?

Now back at work, sitting at her desk, Alex let the reality of the situation sink in…

Now that Elliot knew, would Olivia push for more? Would she want to tell someone else? Cragen, perhaps? Alex shuddered at the thought.

**You're obsessing, Cabot. Everything will be fine.**

Alex decided to push these thoughts to the back of her mind for now. She needed a distraction, and work was not doing it. She knew just the thing…

Alex pushed the door open with her hip, just a little too hard, as it rebounded almost knocking her back into the hallway.

She softly swore under her breath.

"Alex is that you," Olivia called from the den. "You're here early…not that I mind."

"Well, the thought of your sitting home alone was such a distraction…," Alex let her voice trail off as she plopped on the couch next to the sexy detective.

"God, Olivia, even at your worst, you are beautiful," Alex thought as she kissed her cheek.

"How ya feeling," Alex asked.

Olivia's arm was still in a sling, but her mobility was getting better each day.

"Still a little sore, but so ready to get back out there," Olivia said returning the kiss to Alex's cheek.

Right now was so perfect, Alex thought. So perfect…

"Alex," Olivia began, "We really haven't talked about that night at the hospital."

"What do you mean," Alex gave Olivia a quizzical look.

"You know, the night we told Elliot…about us. Are you still okay with it," Olivia asked.

"I have to be, don't I?" The words came out of Alex's mouth before she realized what she had said.

"Alex…," Olivia was clearly hurt.

"Oh, Olivia, that's not what I meant!" Alex stuttered for a moment then began again, "Yes, I'm happy that Elliot knows about us, yes."

Olivia didn't respond.

Sensing tension lingering in the air, Alex got up from the couch, "I'm going to change, baby, can I get you anything while I'm up?"

"No thanks," Olivia said quietly.

Alex kissed her cheek again. She knew she had upset Olivia, but right now she was too tired to try any harder.

Alex made her way to the bedroom and grabbed a pair of Olivia's NYPD sweats and put them on.

She stood in the darkened room for a moment.

**Way to go, Cabot. You're such an ass sometimes. You'd better fix this now.**

Entering the den again, Alex knelt in front of Olivia and took her hands.

"Do you know how much I love you?" Alex was really trying now. She rubbed her thumbs over Olivia's knuckles. "Why don't we do something special Friday night, just the two of us?"

Olivia suddenly perked up. "What do you have in mind, counselor?" Olivia asked with a raised eyebrow.

Alex bit her bottom lip and smiled. "A quiet dinner at the restaurant of you choice, then maybe we can come back here and… test your mobility," Alex could not keep a straight face.

"We could test it now," Olivia joined in the laughter, then winced in pain as she moved her shoulder just a bit too far.

"Whew!" Alex thought. **Got outta that one, Cabot.**

"Let's wait until Friday, detective. So, what do you want to order for dinner tonight?"

Friday did not come soon enough for Alex.

Just as she was finishing for the week she heard a soft knock on her office door. Liz Donnely stuck her head in.

Noticing that Alex was getting ready to leave, Liz shot off a dry remark. "Leaving so soon, Alexandra?"

"It's after six o'clock on Friday, Liz…yeah, I'm leaving," Alex shot back.

"What do you need?"

Taken aback by Alex's curt comment, Liz backed down. "Oh, nothing that can't wait 'till Monday," Liz replied. "Hot date?" Liz added.

"What?" Alex asked confused. "Oh, yeah…something like that. Are you sure you don't need me?"

"No, no," Liz admitted.

Alex was already out the door as Liz muttered under her breath, "Have fun on your date."

"God, this is so good, Liv, just the two of us having a quiet dinner," Alex sighed as she stared across the table at her girlfriend.

"Thanks for helping me get dressed," Olivia winked at Alex.

Alex blushed slightly at the thought of the naked detective. Olivia could always make her blush, and Alex LOVED that!

"Want some more wine?" Alex started to fill Olivia's empty glass before the detective could answer.

"Sure," Olivia chuckled.

They were already on their third bottle of the night.

Alex seemed really relaxed tonight, Olivia thought. It had been one hell of a week, though. Olivia watched as Alex sipped her wine and poked at the remaining dinner on her plate.

Noticing Olivia's stare, Alex did a quick scan of the restaurant, then slowly took Olivia's hand.

"Alex," Olivia was puzzled at the open display of affection, but highly excited. "You know we're not the only people in the restaurant."

Alex knew that she was taking a risk, but after almost three bottles of wine, she really didn't care!

"Just be quite, Olivia." Alex slurred her words a little.

Olivia tried to suppress a grin. Alex was becoming drunk. "Damn, this is so cute and so not like the straight-laced attorney," Olivia thought.

"Just enjoy the night," Alex chided.

"So…how is that shoulder feeling?" Alex gave Olivia a wicked grin…

Sitting at the bar, Liz Donnely thought she recognized the woman across the room. Yes, it was Alexandra Cabot. "Must be here with her hot date," Liz muttered to herself.

Liz strained her neck to see just who was with Alex, but the wooden partition blocked her sight.

"Will you excuse me for a second, Richard?" Liz asked her date. "I think I see someone I know."

Liz slid off the barstool and made her way to the main dining area. Just as she was about to round the corner she saw her…them. Alex Cabot and Olivia Benson. Holding hands???

Liz stood motionless. She blinked a few times, but the women were still there engaged in a most intense conversation.

"That was quick," Richard said as Liz came back to the bar.

"Uh, yeah. I, umm, was mistaken…not somebody I know."

Liz sat dumbfounded for a moment. What the hell was going on here? Was Olivia Alex's "hot date?"

Liz demanded another drink from the bartender.

"This changes everything," Liz thought as she tossed back her vodka.

The End


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