DISCLAIMER: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and all characters are property of NBC and Dick Wolf.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Special Thanks to a most wonderful beta, Debbie.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Falling for You
By Ann


Standing just outside the doorway with my presence still undetected by any of the room's occupants, I watch as Olivia rifles through a stack of reports at lightening speed. How she can tell what she's reading is beyond me, but the look of sheer determination tells me that she knows exactly what she's looking for and that she won't stop until she's found it.

I take advantage of the rare moment to openly admire the female detective. A gorgeous face framed by highlighted hair and a killer body. I could lose myself in those brown eyes and have often wondered if her hands would be callused or soft.

And she is wearing one of those damn tight fitting sweaters too. Whoever coined the phrase 'clothes make the woman' has never seen Olivia Benson dressed in . . . well, anything. In her case, it would have to be 'the woman makes the clothes.' I swear Olivia would look good dressed in only a sheet. Of course, not covered at all would be better.

Somehow, I've got to find a way to put an end to this infatuation, and instead of thinking of her as one hot, sexy detective, I need to focus on just the detective part. 'C'mon Alex, get your act together and do your job.'

Taking a few cleansing breathes, I wait a few extra minutes to attempt to gain my composure before entering the room. Last week, I finally realized my attraction to the beautiful detective, but I can't for the life of me figure her out. She gives off so many mixed signals that I don't know what to think, and now I find myself nervous and unsure when I'm around her.

Can you imagine? Me? Alex Cabot, the ADA everyone on the witness stand fears, the hardnosed bitch who doesn't show any sympathy or empathy in a courtroom suddenly being skittish and awkward? Donnelly would have a field day with this; hell, everyone would get a big kick out of it.

Pulling back my shoulders and holding my head high, I stride into the room as if I own the place. My entrance is noticed by every single person save the one individual whose attention I crave the most.

My steps falter when I approach her desk, and she doesn't even look up. The others have gone back to their previous tasks when they realize I'm not there to speak to them, and, thankfully for me, their attention is diverted elsewhere as I proceed to almost trip over my heel and bump into the side of Olivia's desk.

Damn, that's going to leave a nice bruise on my shin.

"Alex? What are you doing here?" My dream girl asks with one of those patented smiles of hers as she looks up from the mounds of stacked papers.

The jarring of her desk must have pulled her attention from the files. So, I greet her with a return smile and then make a casual move to sit on the side of her desk. Miraculously, I manage to perch on the edge without falling off, and I turn to answer Olivia before she has to ask her question again.

Imagine my surprise when I notice the usually professional Detective Benson openly staring at my legs. Well, well, maybe she's interested after all. I move to cross my left leg over my right, to show even more skin, when Olivia reaches out and places her hand on my thigh to stop me.

What is she doing? Not that I haven't dreamed of this moment, but we're in the middle of the precinct for God's sake. Of all the times for her to show interest; doesn't she realize we have to be careful?

As I shift my eyes to check on the status of her co-workers, Olivia's voice brings my attention back to both her and her hand. The hand, by the way, that does indeed appear to be soft; thereby putting an end to my earlier puzzlement. Although, I'd really like the opportunity to feel the touch without the barrier of my hose just to be certain of the correct answer.

"Alex? Alex, your leg is bleeding. Why don't you use the restroom upstairs? There are some first aid items in the medicine cabinet. I can go with you, if you'd like," Olivia helpfully informs me.

What? I look down to see blood trickling down my shin and soaking into my pantyhose as it slowly travels toward the top of my foot. Crap. Here I thought Olivia had finally noticed me, and she was only interested in caring for my injury.

Embarrassed, I abruptly stand to flee the scene of the accident but somehow manage to succeed in knocking my briefcase onto the floor spilling the contents everywhere. I whisper a curse and lean down to pick up the files when I clumsily lose my balance and fall forward into Olivia's inviting lap.

Ever agile, the detective catches me before my forward momentum takes me over the top of her chair and onto the floor. I immediately try to remove myself from this awkward position, but only make matters worse when I place my hand down to lift myself off of my savior and instead find myself groping her left breast. Would someone please just shoot me and put me out of my misery?

As I offer up my death wish, another set of hands grasp around my waist and gently assist me from Olivia's lap. Grateful, I turn to thank the Good Samaritan. Surprisingly, I find a smiling George Huang.

Hey, why's he looking at me like that?

"Alex, are you all right? You didn't hurt yourself again, did you?" Olivia asks in concern from her chair still located directly behind me.

I automatically grimace and note George's seemingly knowing expression before I turn back to face the detective.

"No, I'm fine. I just lost my balance. Um, do you think you can keep an eye on my briefcase while I go take care of my leg?" I ask, as I go through the motion of smoothing down my skirt to avoid making eye contact of any kind with the object of my affection.

"Sure," Olivia answers, more in the form of a question, as I stride to the stairs as fast as my uncoordinated body will take me. I force myself to take my time navigating the staircase so as not to make a bigger fool of myself by taking a header, or in this case a footer, back down the steps.

A short time later, with a freshly cleaned cut which now sports a large band-aid, I stand at the top of the stairs looking down at the squad room. It's mostly empty so I guess the other detectives must have been assigned a case while I was temporarily indisposed.

Maybe I can take advantage of the near empty room and make it back to my office with no one noticing that I'm not wearing hose. I can't believe I didn't think to grab the extra pair I keep in the side pocket of my briefcase. My naturally pale legs are going to be the first thing anyone notices.

Resigned to my fate, I start down the stairs and hesitate once I see Olivia with her head in her hands looking down at a file. I wish there was something I could do to help her when she gets so involved in a case, like maybe cooking her a meal, or drawing her a bath, or giving her a full-body massage. Sighing, I once again resume my path down the stairway.

Happy to reach the bottom without causing further injury to myself, I make my way to Olivia's desk to retrieve my briefcase for my getaway. Huang is sitting in Elliott's chair, and I get the distinct impression that he's been watching me watch Olivia. Damn it, doesn't the guy have an office somewhere?

Just as I place my hand on the handle of my briefcase, Don's voice fills the silence of the squad room and reminds me why I came here in the first place.

"Counselor, glad to see you made it. If you and Doctor Huang will step into my office, we can get started. Oh, and Olivia, I need you to join us as well."

My head snaps around to the detective just as she jumps up from her chair to protest being called away from her current case. Lord, she has on those low riding black pants with her wide black belt. Can anyone say goddess?

"Captain, I'm right in the middle of an investigation, and I really can't spare any of my time. I've almost found a connection with the suspect and another woman who was raped last year," Olivia answers in a very determined voice.

"Detective Benson, I have assigned your case to Munch and Fin. Each is very capable of continuing your work. Elliott will stay on board since you will be indisposed for the next two days. Now, if you three will follow me to my office, I'll fill you in on the details," Cragen states, as he turns and leaves Huang and I with a furious Olivia. Gee, thanks Don.

"Son of a bitch, this sucks," is Olivia's muttered response as she stomps after her captain.

Huang merely shrugs his shoulder and says, "Maybe you can work some of your magic and get her to calm down."

Smiling, he winks and turns to follow Olivia into the captain's office leaving me standing alone with my mouth agape.

I come out of my stupor long enough to catch up with the teasing psychologist, and together, we enter the room to find Don sitting behind his desk and Olivia pouting over by the wall. Something tells me I'm not going to be happy about this little meeting either.

"Okay people, here's the deal. New Jersey PD is looking to change some things in its Special Victims unit, and apparently, we've been chosen as the ideal squad to educate part of their team as to how our unit works. They're sending their lead detective, ADA, and chief psychologist, so the brass wants you three to work directly with these people for the next two days. You are to take them through as many of our procedures as you possibly can in the allotted time," Don explains as I come to the same conclusion as Olivia about this assignment; it definitely sucks.

The ringing of the captain's phone keeps me from asking questions as to how this will affect my current case load. Surely, Liz didn't reassign my cases too. Our office is already overloaded as it is.

I don't have long to wait for an answer as Don hangs up the phone and turns to the three of us once more.

"That was Sergeant Sanders at the front desk. Our guests have arrived so I've told him we'd come to them. Alex, I know both you and Olivia aren't happy with this assignment, and frankly, neither am I. Orders came from upstairs so there's nothing I can do about it. Let's just get through the next two days. Doctor Huang, my apologies to you also," Cragen says as he opens the door to the office.

Without another word, the four of us head toward the front desk, and more than likely, three individuals who don't want to be here as much as we don't want them to be.

The desk sergeant immediately ushers us into a small conference room directly across from his desk where we find two women bickering with each other while a man sits at the table watching the action. When we step into the room, the women stop their conversation and immediately turn their attention to the newcomers.

The taller of the two aggressively steps forward to greet us, and judging by the gold shield on her belt, I surmise she must be the lead detective. With a threatening tone, she proceeds to let us all know exactly what she thinks of the current assignment.

"Let's get something straight from the very beginning. None of us is happy with this little situation so please don't act as if you are either. We are here for two days, and to be perfectly honest, I don't expect to gain any knowledge from any of you. There is nothing wrong with our unit, but our captain seems to think there is. Let's just try not to kill each other before it's time for us to leave."

Olivia starts to respond, but Don quickly intervenes.

"Detective Hower, welcome to the NYPD Special Victims Unit. May I present Detective Olivia Benson, ADA Alex Cabot, and our police psychologist, George Huang. If you would introduce the rest of your group, we can move this meeting to the squad room conference area," Don replies in an attempt to smooth the already turbulent waters.

The tall detective suddenly loses her scowl when she lays her eyes on me, and I do mean lays her eyes on me. A smirk immediately forms on her face as she looks me up and down, and I feel as if I'm on display. Her intent is very obvious to everyone, including Olivia who makes it a point to step into the visiting detective's line of sight.

With Olivia blocking my view, I turn my attention to the other two. The short redheaded woman is looking at Olivia in much the same way her counterpart was ogling me. I think I may have just discovered a major problem with their unit.

Huang saves the day this time as he steps between Olivia and Detective Hower to introduce himself. She shakes his outstretched hand, and thankfully, has enough etiquette to introduce the rest of her team.

The short redhead is their ADA, Jane Travis, and the gentleman is the staff psychologist, Evan Redmond. Jane, in her tight short skirt, makes it a point to hold onto Olivia's hand entirely too long when they exchange their greetings, and if looks could kill, the little bitch would be on her way to the morgue.

George pulls me from my death glare long enough to greet his counterpart, and together the six of us, along with Captain Cragen, leave the room. Jane sidles up to Olivia and manages to walk close enough to occasionally bump against her the entire way to the squad room. Maybe I can figure out a way for her to take an accidental tumble down the stairs.

"Relax, Alex. Olivia's only interested in one ADA, and she's not a redhead," George whispers as he walks alongside of me.

Huang's remark has me stopping dead in my tracks, and it's too bad I didn't give a signal because Detective Hower proceeds to run directly into my back, which isn't surprising since she made it a point to walk closely behind me, very closely I might add. We both fall to the floor upon impact with the detective's weight effectively pinning me down.

"Don't fight me, blondie. There'll be plenty of time for that later," she softly but crudely whispers into my ear.

Her words only cause me to struggle even more, and the next thing I know, the weight has been lifted off of me and George is helping me up. Once on my feet, I turn to see Olivia pushing the detective against the wall in the classic arrest position. The only thing missing is the set of handcuffs being placed on the assailant's wrists.

"Detective Benson, release her now!" Don immediately shouts to get Olivia's attention.

Hesitating, Olivia leans forward and whispers something in the other detective's ear before she finally lets go and steps back. Detective Hower is evidently not happy with either the way she was handled or Olivia's choice of words as she rears back and punches Olivia squarely in the jaw.

Not to be deterred, Olivia retaliates with a strike to Hower's nose and a swift kick to her abdomen. The other detective slides down the wall holding both contact areas with each hand while Olivia rubs her obviously sore jaw.

An upset Jane roughly pushes pass Olivia to kneel next to her counterpart while Evan looks on shaking his head in disappointment.

Red faced, Cragen is beyond pissed and hasn't uttered a single word while Huang leans against the opposite wall looking down at the two women with a smile.

I follow his gaze, to see Jane sitting on the floor with Hower's face in her hands, and I watch in total disbelief as she leans forward and gently kisses the detective's mouth.

When I look back at George, he is looking back and forth between Olivia and me with the exact same smile. Son of a bitch, he knows.

Needless to say, the assignment has been called off, and Olivia and I find ourselves with a two day suspension. I don't know what I did wrong, but somehow Don convinced Liz that I played a major role in causing the fight.

By the time Olivia and I leave Cragen's office, her jaw is swollen and almost purple in color. It must really be painful because when I suggest she let me take her to the emergency room, she doesn't bat an eye.

I hail a cab the minute we step out of the precinct and direct the driver to the nearest ER.

Hours later, we walk out of the hospital with a bag of ice and a prescription for painkillers. Olivia's jaw, though not broken, is severely bruised, and the doctor ordered her to stay home for the next couple of days. I don't think he heard her muttered answer of 'that won't be a problem.'

We arrive at her apartment thirty minutes later, and she accepts my offer to go down to the local pharmacy to fill her prescription. Leaving her at the door to her apartment, she hands over her key, and I quickly make my way back to the elevator.

Returning as soon as I can, I let myself in and softly call her name. I begin to get worried when I don't get a response so I put my things down and go in search of the detective. Following the sounds of a soft snore, I find her sound asleep in her bed with the ice bag on the floor.

I lean down to retrieve the bag and turn to gently place it back on her jaw; however, the back of my legs hit the nightstand, and once again, I find myself falling on Olivia, only this time she's not awake to catch me.

"Oof," is Olivia's natural response to having a body flung on top of her while she is unaware.

Her arms automatically wrap around me, holding me close, and even half-awake, she's protecting me from harm. Too bad she doesn't have the same feelings for me as I do her.

I am much more careful this time when I try to lift myself off the detective as I place my hand on the edge of the bed, but Olivia has other plans as she uses both her arms and legs to anchor me in place. It takes everything I have not to moan in pleasure as I find myself in a position I have often dreamt of including the part of us lying in Olivia's bed.

"Alex, look at me," Olivia softly pleads when I burrow my head into her shoulder to keep her from seeing my desire.

Slowly, I lift my head from its current position to look down into her soul-searching brown orbs. She gives me a reassuring smile as she reaches up with one hand to gently stroke my face.

"Alex, do you have feelings for me?" Olivia asks, as she moves her hand to cup my face.

Okay, Alex, this is it, the moment of truth. Do I tell this wonderful woman how I feel about her or continue to worship her from afar? I gaze into her eyes to try to read her feelings, but her guard is still in place so I have no idea what my response should be.

While I am contemplating my answer, Olivia has lifted her head and is much closer than she was a minute ago. I can't help but lick my lips as I focus on hers.

Leaning forward, she makes contact with me, and I take full advantage of the situation by placing my hand behind the back of her neck to pull her closer.

Delicious is the perfect adjective to describe this moment, but when she spears her tongue into my mouth I no longer care about descriptions or adjectives. Instead, I prefer to live in the moment and enjoy it to its fullest.

As the kiss finally comes to an end, I find myself back to being unsure and nervous. What if this was just an experiment? What is she doesn't like the way I kiss? How can I possibly find out how she truly feels?

We continue to gaze into each other's eyes, spellbound, and Olivia finally gives me a little hope when she smiles at me and reaches up to move my hair out of my face.

All of a sudden everything becomes clear, and I choose the perfect question.

"Olivia, what did you say to Detective Hower right before you let her go?"

Grinning, Olivia replies, "I told her if she ever touched you again I would kick her ass."

Wow, she really is my protector; however, her answer still does not reveal anything about her feelings. Now what?

In a very calm voice, Olivia adds, "I also told her that you were mine, and I pointed out that I don't share with anyone."

"Did you mean it?" I nervously ask as I look into her eyes.

Without a bit of hesitation, Olivia replies, "Yes, Alex. Yes, I did."

My face breaks into a huge smile, and I lean down for another kiss until my eyes focus on the large purple bruise. Instead, I reach for the forgotten ice bag and place it on her jaw as I lightly kiss the end of her nose.

Making myself comfortable, I stretch out on top of Olivia, and she places her arms around me once more as I settle my head on her shoulder.

Moments later, she is sound asleep, and I lie perfectly still, wearing a perpetual grin.

Thinking back to my morning thoughts about Olivia and her clothing, I believe I've changed my mind.

I'd much rather have Olivia covered by me than a sheet any day. The not covered at all bit can come later.

The End

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