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.
"Thanks for paying," Elliot Stabler lifted his coffee in a salute to his partner.
"If I didn't, we'd be drinking that nasty shit from Sal's hot dog stand again."
"I have a family to support; I can't pay for designer coffee."
"At least it's coffee. I think Sal makes that stuff by boiling his dirty shorts and socks."
Elliot grinned. "You know, for somebody who wears lipstick, you talk like a guy."
"Bite me. Are we getting the warrant for Raymond's apartment?" Elliot had been on the phone while she'd been buying their coffee.
"ADA Fielding says he'll get back to us. It would help if he knew what the hell he was doing, but the evidence is strong enough that even he should be able to convince a judge to sign off on it."
Olivia frowned. "Fielding? Where's Cabot?"
"Her assistant said she took a day off. I don't think it was scheduled, but she was supposed to be in court all day today on the Melendez case and they took the deal she offered yesterday afternoon."
Olivia knew about Melendez, because she'd spent the evening celebrating the result with Alexandra Cabot, their regularly assigned ADA. "Is she ok?"
Elliot shrugged. "Hell if I know. You spend more time with her than I do. Whyn't you call her if you're so concerned?"
"I'm just curious," Olivia muttered, looking away.
Elliot looked thoughtful. "If you say so. I gotta use the can. Can you keep an eye on my coffee?"
"You're going to use the public toilet in the park?"
"Forget what I said earlier," he smirked as he walked away. "You are such a girl."
"Woman!" she called after him, returning the smirk. She loved Elliot Stabler and wondered if she'd still want to be on the job if and when he was no longer her partner.
As soon as he was out of sight, Olivia flipped open her phone and dialed.
"It's Olivia. Are you ok? Elliot just told me you took an unscheduled day off."
"I'm fine. A bit tired. I had stuff to do that I'd been putting off like renewing my driver's license, getting a haircut. I even managed to squeeze in a trip to my dentist for a checkup, because she had a cancellation."
"I'm glad you're ok." Olivia made no effort to hide the relief in her voice. "And you've had a more productive morning than me and Elliot. Your temporary replacement, Garth Fielding, is as useless as tits on a nun."
"He's just inexperienced and terrified of doing the wrong thing," she excused, but Olivia could hear the smile in her voice.
"What do you have planned for this afternoon?"
"Are you about to make me an offer, detective?"
Olivia instinctively lowered her voice. "I wish I could be a factor in your afternoon plans, counselor, but I suspect I'll be executing a search warrant on a dive somewhere off Orchard Street."
"Well, that's my second disappointment for the day."
"What was the first one, realizing that the DMV does not require that all employees actually be natives of this planet?"
"Waking up alone."
"Alex " Olivia caught sight of Elliot emerging from the red brick building that housed the men's and ladies' rooms and she knew that she could not have that particular conversation with Alex, but she couldn't hide the ache in her voice.
"I love the way you say my name. I didn't realize that hearing somebody call your name could make your heart hurt or give you butterflies in your stomach. But then, I didn't know that just looking at someone could make me cry."
"I know," Olivia replied softly.
"We good to go?" Elliot asked. "Oh, sorry," he added, when he realized she was on the phone. He took his coffee and retreated several feet, to allow her the privacy to complete her call.
"I know we said that last night couldn't be allowed to happen again, but I want you to know that it wasn't casual. Not to me. I'd hoped we could talk things over this morning."
They certainly hadn't done much talking the night before. At least not about things that weren't immediate and physical. "Me, too. Leaving you this morning was hard. You looked so beautiful with the sheet tangled in your legs and your hair over your eyes and over my stomach." She listened to the soft inhalation at the other end of the phone. "When I heard my phone vibrating, it took every ounce of strength I had not to ignore it and just stay in bed with you."
"I guess I was more tired than I realized, because I didn't hear your phone and I didn't hear you leave."
"We didn't get much sleep and it was only 5:20."
"I'd planned to wake you up slowly. If last night was going to be all we had, I wanted to make love to you one last time."
"I like it when you call me that. It reminds me of what it was like to feel you inside me and what it was like to taste you."
"How am I supposed to forget about last night when you talk like that?"
"We said it couldn't happen again. We never said we had to forget it."
"Good," Olivia admitted softly, "because I know I can't. And I don't want to."
"I suppose we have to learn how to act as though it never happened."
"I think I think it's gonna take some time. For me, anyway."
"For me, too. You're beautiful, Liv. I just wanted to tell you that one more time. And I "
"Me, too, Alex. Me, too." She blinked her eyes because they'd started to burn. She blamed the lack of sleep. "Thank you."
Olivia looked up and encountered the curious look in her partner's eyes as he sipped his coffee and leaned patiently against a fence, just out of earshot.
After she and Alex had said their good-byes, she wandered over to him, but she remained distracted.
"Let me guess. That call was all about why you were not at your apartment this morning when I called."
"Stabler, you know I'm going to tell you that it's "
"None of my business. Yeah, I know." He was smiling.
As they walked back to the unmarked car, their coffee break over, Elliot's phone rang. He spoke briefly to the caller and then said, "We're getting our warrant. Captain says uniforms are going to meet us at Raymond's apartment and Fielding will be delivering it in person."
"Least he can do after waffling so much," Olivia muttered uncharitably.
Elliot's smile widened. "For somebody who got laid last night, you sure are grumpy."
"Yeah, I know. Bite you."
As he started the car, he said cheerfully, "And Liv?"
She looked at him and raised an eyebrow, waiting for his next smart-ass remark.
"If you and Cabot want to keep it a secret that you're fucking like rabbits, she really can't continue to take your invitations to 'bite you' quite so literally."
"How did you know ?"
"You have the mother of all hickeys forming just over your left breast. But if you do up another button on your blouse it will be our little secret." He grinned. "And in answer to your question, I didn't know. I mean I suspected, because you went out for drinks with her last night and you two do a lot of looking, and I don't mean at me, when you're in the same room. But I didn't know until right now."
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