DISCLAIMER: CSI is the property of CBS, Jerry Bruckheimer etc. I own no characters except Jude.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

By Jen

Part Three


Sara sat in the hallway outside of interrogation room #3, waiting for Brass to set up a tape recorder to take her statement, staring intently at the floor. She looked up as Catherine stepped in front of her, "It's different when you're on the other side of the table."

"I know it's different, but you aren't the one in trouble..." Catherine said soothingly, sitting beside her, "It's hard, but you've got to do it. If not just for yourself, for your brother."

The glass door opened and Brass walked into the hallway, "You ready?"

"As ready as I'll ever be." Sara said softly, releasing the grip Catherine had on her hand as she took a step towards Brass, "Let's get this over with."

Sara sat across from Brass, her left hand in her lap, her right laying flat on the table, her index finger tapping anxiously against the cold metal. He pressed 'record' on the tape recorder, and gave Sara a sympathetic look. "State your name, age, and address please."

Sara cleared her throat, her voice slightly hoarse from emotion, "Sara Joan Sidle, 33, 114 Hawthorne Lane, Apartment 3-B."

"Why don't we start with a chat about your mother, Laura Sidle. It is to my understanding that she was released from the California State Women's Correctional Facility approximately three months ago. A restraining order is still in effect against your mother, Laura Sidle, protecting yourself and your older brother, Jude Sidle, age 36. Is it true that Laura violated this court order?"

Sara began tapping her foot nervously as she responded, "When she was brought into custody, child protective services evoked a restraining order for Jude and I, due to some threats Laura made against us." She cleared her throat, "She contacted me the day she was released, three months and 8 days ago. From conversations I've had with Laura, I'm led to believe she was contacting Jude as well."

"Why exactly was your mother sentenced to prison?"

"Uh, my parents never really got along. They were high school sweethearts and decided when they were 16 they'd get married and be together forever. They hadn't really grown up when they did get married, straight out of high school, and by the time my brother, Jude, was born, 3 years later, their relationship was very rocky. They blamed their problems on Jude, and the financial and emotional hardship that he put on them. I was born 3 years later, and just contributed to the problem. The bed and breakfast they owned went under because of my mother's addiction to drugs, mostly acid, and my father started drinking. Within just a few years, they owed nearly 100 thousand in credit card bills, the house was being foreclosed, and they had sold the majority of our possessions to support their habits. The fighting increased, both of them were both verbally and physically abusive towards each other. Jude and I tended to blend into the background, it was Jude's idea that if we didn't attract attention to ourselves, and were always 'good', they would leave us out of their fights."

Sara paused, taking a shaky breath, "I was picked to represent our school at a county science fair, my teacher called to talk to my Mom, the school would have paid most of the tab, but some of the travel expenses were up to my parents to foot. My Mom was on a bad trip, my Dad was drunk, I was a normal bratty kid and I didn't keep my mouth shut. My Dad went to shut my mouth for me, and out of nowhere my Mom came at him with a knife. She was admitted into a psych hospital for detox and evaluation, and was then sentenced to life in prison. She appealed the conviction, the arresting officer obtained a statement without a 'Miranda' warning. At the scene, she confessed to the crime, and the detectives didn't gather much evidence. Without her confession, nothing they had was concrete to prove her guilt. They jury determined 'time served' was a good enough punishment and she was let free."

Brass nodded, patting Sara's hand gently, "When Laura contacted you, what did she talk to you about?"

Sara ran her hand through her hair, trying to stop her body from trembling and the tears from her eyes, "There were a lot of thinly veiled threats, she wanted money to get back on her feet. I gave her a check for a thousand dollars, hoping she'd just go away. She kept coming back for more, but I told her I couldn't help her. She told me..."

Sara paused, stifling a sob, "She told me she'd do to me what she did to my father if I didn't help her. I gave her another 200. The time after that she told me she'd go to the lab stating I had an inappropriate relationship with my supervisor, Grissom." She exhaled, shaking her head, "Which is totally untrue. I don't even know how she knew where I worked. I didn't want any trouble to start, so I gave her more money to shut her up. She wanted more, but I just didn't have any more to give her. She's been harassing me ever since, but I was too scared to do anything about it. I really didn't think she'd hurt me, until I found out Jude died."

"Do you have any evidence indicating your mother had a part in Jude's death?"

Sara shook her head, "Nothing that couldn't be labeled as 'hearsay'. She indicated to me that she killed him. She told me that I should cooperate with her, because Jude didn't, and she didn't want a similar accident to happen to me. It isn't the first time she's threatened my life, but it's the first time she's done it where I've had a witness. Catherine Willows was in my apartment and heard the entire conversation. She convinced me to file a complaint with PD, although I don't see what good it does...I already have a restraining order that she doesn't follow, but it's always good to leave you guys with a hint of where to start looking if I end up murdered."

"As you are aware, violating a restraining order will result in time spent in lockup for Laura. Enough violations and it will be more than just a few days."

He clicked off the tape recorder and walked around the table to give Sara a reassuring hug, "You did the right thing by filing a complaint. I know you're hands off on the case, but between the two of us, it isn't looking too good for your mother. It may be a good idea to stay with someone until this case is wrapped up, just to be safe."

"Is that an offer, Detective Brass?" Sara joked, flashing him a tense smile.

Brass gave a light shrug, "If you particularly want to stay with an old man like me. I was thinking more along the lines of Nick or Greg, even Catherine, if you're in the mood for children."

"I'll consider if. Thanks Jim, for everything." Sara said softly, squeezing his hand and moving towards the door.

The moment she stepped in the hall, she could sense Laura's presence. The sounds of footsteps echoing down the hall, mixed with the all too familiar perfume sent Sara's nerve endings tingling, her mind trying to get her body to run as far away as possible.

Instead of running, she remained rooted to her spot, watching with sick fascination as Greg and a cop she didn't recognize led Laura down the hallway, fury evident on the woman's face as she caught Sara's eye. Beside Sara, Catherine stood and placed a hand on the brunette's arm for silent support, recognizing Laura Sidle immediately by her resemblance of her daughter.

"You bitch!" Laura yelled as they got closer, pulling away from the officer and lunging toward her daughter, "You ungrateful bitch, I know you're behind this! I'll get you for this, I'll get you!"

Sara took a step back, clutching to Catherine as the officer roughly grabbed Laura, "Not a good idea, Mrs. Sidle."

Sara stood with her back against the wall as the threesome walked by, her heart racing as Laura growled at her. As they walked into an interrogation room across the hall, Sara sank onto the bench she and Catherine had previously been sitting on, dropping her head in her hands with a moan.

Brass put a hand on the brunette's shoulder, "Now I must insist that you stay with someone else until we're able to hold Laura."

"It's okay, hon, you can stay with me." Catherine said, sitting next to Sara and rubbing her back in gentle circles, "Everything's going to be okay."

"For me, maybe," Sara said softly, "But it's too late for Jude."

To Be Continued

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