DISCLAIMER: The characters herein are used without permission. No infringement intended.
SPOILERS: Specifically for series three, episode two and what had gone before.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
FEEDBACK: To ralst31[at]yahoo.co.uk
SEQUEL: To Rachel Vs. Godzilla
Ending a Mistake
"Why am I so crap at this?" Sinking further into the couch, Rachel tried to pretend that the wailing from outside was little more than the wind, but the continual repetition of her name kept the illusion from really taking hold. "God, if he doesn't shut up, I'm going to kill him."
Janet ignored the statement - she'd kill Sean herself if he woke the kids - and zeroed in on the question. "You rush into things," she said. "You're a good copper, Rachel, but you always fail to apply that brilliant mind of yours to your personal life." The last couple of years had somewhat robbed Janet of the higher ground on that particular score, but at least she and Ade had managed to get well into double figures before calling their marriage quits.
"Interrogation and dating aren't as interchangeable as you'd think," Rachel quipped, her smile dying on her lips as Sean began banging on the door once more. "God, I'm sorry Janet, I'll get him to leave."
Standing, Janet signalled Rachel to stay where she was, as she went to answer the door. Several minutes of silence followed before Janet reappeared and retook her seat on the couch. "He's gone back to your flat," she said. "He won't be back tonight."
Rachel didn't know how she did it but with a few well placed words and an immovable will Janet could fell even the greatest of opponents. "You're terrific, you." She should have let Janet speak to him earlier, but as with most things connected to her marriage, she'd hoped that ignoring the problem would make it go away.
"He's hurt, Rachel, and I can't say that I blame him." He might not have been Janet's idea of a suitable life partner but Sean had been there for Rachel when she'd needed someone and he didn't deserve to have his life pulled out from under him. "What did you tell him?"
"The truth." A lie would have been easier but she'd already lied enough. "That I didn't love him. That he was a lovely bloke but marrying him had been a mistake." Her ex-boyfriend dead, her brother in custody for his murder and her career about to be flushed down the U-bend of life, she'd clung on to Sean's love like a lifeline, and they were both now paying the price. "He wouldn't believe me. He kept insisting that we could work through it."
"No." She'd take the blame for the shambles that was their marriage, but Rachel refused to be responsible for it dragging on and causing yet more pain. "I told him about the bloke in the hotel." A crap shag with a stranger had devastated him in ways her truths had not but it was finding out about her other secret that has shattered him. "And about Godzilla."
A look of confusion crossed Janet's face. "Gill? What about her?"
It was the one secret she'd kept back. "I think... I think I might be in love with her." Even now it sounded preposterous, so Rachel wasn't surprised by the look of befuddlement that swept across Janet's face. "I know," she said, and she did. It was ridiculous, it really was, but that didn't stop it from being true. "It's barmy."
Seconds ticked by as Janet tried to digest the latest piece of news in Rachel's convoluted love life. "Does she know?" she asked finally.
"I don't know." There had been a kiss - fast, furious and prompted by a hangover from hell - but then her world had come crushing down and, somehow, they'd never discussed it. "She'd probably run a mile if she did."
"Probably." Janet didn't mean to be cruel but she'd know Gill for a damn sight longer and she knew that her code of conduct wouldn't allow her to associate romantically, even as the non-responsive recipient of a crush, with an officer under her command. "I didn't think you even liked her?"
"I don't, half the time, but the other half..." Rachel shrugged. "She's the most amazing copper I've ever met and there are these moments, when we're working together, that I get a glimpse of the amazing, fucked up woman beneath, and it's during those moments that I can feel myself falling in love with her." She half-smiled, the enormity of her admission leaving her feeling vulnerable but oddly calm. "I can't believe I just admitted that."
"That makes two of us." The last time Janet had felt that wrong-footed, she'd just been stabbed by a serial killer. "Are you planning on telling her?"
"No." If there were two things Rachel was sure about, it was that her marriage was over, and she would die a thousand deaths before she would breath a word of her feelings to God-freaking-zilla. "This is our secret, Janet, just yours and mine." Her throat tightened and Rachel had to fight back the urge to wipe the moisture gathering in her eyes. "Godzilla can never know."
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