DISCLAIMER: Most characters are not mine, but I'm using them for entertainment and not for profit. The story is my own.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: The “Drinks” series of short pieces: limited to fewer than three full pages, written primarily as fragments of conversations, each featuring at least one drink. The stories are completely unrelated, unless otherwise stated and don’t fit in any particular timeline. They also may be unrelated to canon. I just try to keep the characterization true. I hope I’ve succeeded in that.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
"You're staring," Elliot Stabler said quietly to his partner.
"I don't know what you mean." Detective Olivia Benson took a gulp of her beer and put it back on the scarred oak bar at O'Malley's, an Irish pub that would surely be torn down when the next wave of condos was built on the west side.
Elliot chuckled. He was paid to observe and he observed that ADA Alexandra Cabot had a fine pair of legs. They were celebrating the fact that SVU had kicked major ass in the first NYPD 10K fun run. The District Attorneys' offices and Port Authority Police Department had been invited to participate, yet the 16th Precinct had still had three finishers in the top 20, if you counted third place finisher Alex Cabot as part of the 1-6. Although a pale blue hooded sweat shirt now covered surprisingly strong shoulders, her navy running shorts hugged her tight butt and showed off her long legs from the tops of her thighs to her ankles.
He also observed that his partner had been withdrawn from the time Alex had impulsively hugged her when Olivia crossed the finish line a minute after Alex, placing 11th among the women. The two were close and he'd seen them hug before: birthdays, Christmas special, fully-clothed occasions. But maybe that brief tangle of lean, sweaty limbs had had a different effect on his partner than those other friendly hugs. It had certainly affected their audience. Elena Paz from the 2-2, the most openly lesbian officer he knew, had nudged him in the ribs and asked, "Wouldn't you pay good money to watch?"
"That's my partner and my ADA you're talking about," he'd said, faking horror, but his blue eyes had sparkled with amusement and one corner of his mouth had turned up in a small smile.
"Yeah, so of course you wouldn't have noticed," Paz had replied with mild sarcasm, grinning at him and pulling on a pair of sweat pants over her own shorts before heading for O'Malley's where it was understood that the 1-6 and the 2-2 would be celebrating their results.
Elliot left Olivia to her brooding, but he smiled when Paz easily slipped into the spot he'd vacated. He doubted Olivia would get rid of her as easily.
"Congratulations, Detective Benson."
"Hey, Elena. Thanks."
"You're lookin' good and runnin' well for a middle-aged veteran."
Olivia narrowed her eyes, but her lips twitched as she fought back a smile. "First of all, thirty-eight is not middle-aged. Second, I'll have you know that I'm in my physical and sexual prime, which is probably why I passed your twenty-nine year-old ass like you were backin' up."
"So, Benson, the blond ADA, the hottie, are you hittin' that?"
"Paz, Alex Cabot and I are just friends and you know that I wouldn't sleep with someone I work with, even if I were attracted to her and even if she were interested, which Cabot is not."
"What about Cassidy?"
"The last and worst example of what I refuse to do any more."
"Anyway, back to ADA Hottie. How do you know she's not interested?"
"She's straight. She was dating Trevor Langan."
"You fucked Cassidy; don't mean you're straight. I'm only askin' because I wouldn't mind tryin' my luck but I don't want to step on your toes."
Olivia looked speculatively at Paz: long wavy hair that she wore in a ponytail, widely spaced hazel eyes with long lashes, a small nose and a generous mouth. Paz was kind of a babe, if you hadn't been her training officer when she was a rookie and witnessed a total of three puking episodes at crime scenes and in the morgue. She was petite, but extremely fit a back belt in some obscure martial art and Olivia had only barely beaten her in the race. If Alex was gay or bisexual she might well Olivia's gut burned with a feeling she recognized as jealousy and it made her angry. "You wouldn't be stepping on my toes," she dismissed, turning back to her beer.
Elena sipped her own beer for a few minutes before saying with a smirk, "Yeah, I would."
"What the hell are you talking about?"
"You. You're such a liar, Benson." Elena looked thoughtful and unconsciously dropped the slang from her speech, but the teasing twinkle never left her hazel eyes. "You're sitting here staring at your beer, because if you turn around, you'll be staring at her legs. Well guess what? You're not alone. Every dyke in the room not to mention every straight brother in blue has had a nice long look. She can't be surprised, she's had those legs for decades and it's not like she put on sweats to cover them up, so I guess she'd rather have us staring at them than at her breasts, which she did, unfortunately, cover up."
"I did not 'have a nice long look'. I work with the woman. I've seen her legs before."
"I bet you have."
"What's that supposed to mean?"
"Ever have to share a room?"
"Once," Olivia replied, reluctantly. "Extradition trip."
"See her in her underwear?"
"Yes." She wasn't sure why she'd answered Paz's ridiculous question.
"Bet that ass is as nice as the legs and her boobs are bigger than you'd expect them to be when you see them in a sports bra or a suit, right?"
"Can we not talk about this? The woman is a colleague, not a stranger in a bar."
"True, but she's fine. And I'm not buying that denial shit from you. You have definitely noticed."
"I've noticed, ok?" Olivia snapped, irritation winning out over her determination not to rise to Elena's bait. "I've noticed that she's a hell of a lawyer, passionate about fighting for the good guys and she can be funny as hell. She's more than a hot body with a kissable mouth and a belly you just want to lick "
Following Olivia's outburst, silence fell between the two women and an unaccustomed blush suffused Olivia's face. Mortified, she shook her head and looked away.
Paz stared impassively at her for a few seconds then asked mildly, "Can I buy you another beer?"
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