DISCLAIMER: I don't own any of these characters; all rights go to those who do. I am just using them
AUTHOR'S NOTES: Here's another strangler that just came popping out of my head. Any feedback would be greatly appreciated!
WARNING: This contains a little Sara obsessed with Grissom, but it is all about Sara and Catherine. So don't be discouraged as you read. I would never have them end up with anyone else but each other!

Funny How Things Can Change
By Dearlylovedaimee

It was the fact I didn't care that made it so great. I didn't want a full time relationship, I only wanted sex. It didn't matter who it was with or where we did it, just that it was a get mine, get yours situation. I was about to learn, that when it comes to the heart, things aren't always quite that simple.

Our relationship reluctantly started after I broke up with Hank. I was feeling like the lowest form of life currently residing on the planet; and she was just there. I never asked her for comfort, she merely offered. If you look at it from where I stand, you would say that this whole mess is really her fault. I didn't ask her to fall in love with me nor did I want her to. She was just a pity fuck, someone to take my mind off of who I truly wanted.

I decided a long time ago, that Gil Grissom was the one for me. There was no other man in my life that could make me laugh, cry, or even hate them by just saying one word. The only problem was that he didn't know I even existed. He was so busy getting caught up in the work, that there was no room for him to get caught up in me. So I chose the alternate option, her. Of course, I warned her when we started; who the true object of my affection was. I told her that if he ever showed me signs of a possibility then it would be over. I wouldn't waste time weighting my options or second guessing my heart, I would just leave, expecting no questions to be asked.

She fooled me into thinking that she understood what I was offering. There would be no dating, no kissing on the lips, and certainly not any type of physical contact that wasn't pure, unadulterated sex. She claimed that's all she wanted, too. She willingly and consciously made an adult choice to start this "thing" between us, and I expected her to keep it in the bedroom. Silly me for ever thinking Catherine Willows could just do what she was told for once in her adult life.

She always had to have her own opinion. It was the quality I admired the most and least about her. She never took `No' for an answer, and she almost always never gave in. She was a tough as nails, single, working mother that had no time to deal with cry babies and whiners. It's just funny how she tended to overlook the fact that she could be just as bad as the rest, maybe even a little worse. She was really beginning to put a damper on our little arrangement, when she decided to go and fall in love with me.

I tried my best to avoid the signs. I completely dismissed her advances when she would do something stupid like bring me flowers when she would come over; I would under no circumstances pick her up at her house if she wanted to come over; and most importantly, I would never, never, absolutely never under any condition what so ever, stay after we were done. I considered it just a play fuck. There was not supposed to be any cuddling or enjoying of physical contact other than sex; and that's how I liked it.

Not staying simply eliminated the awkward after talk of how we were going to handle this in the office. The truth was I didn't want to handle it in the office, because to me there was nothing to handle. We were just two consenting adults, having sexual relations, and I honestly didn't see how that was anyone else's business. But like I said before, she ideas of her own.

She started asking me to meet her at restaurants, instead of in the office parking lot after work. She would have some type of drink ordered and when I arrived, she would ask me if I wanted to sit down and eat. Most of the time, I would just tell her that either we skipped forward to the fun stuff or we could both go home alone. Naturally, she got the hint as to what I was referring to, sometimes even putting up a little fight; but in the end, we would always leave and I would get what I wanted. I don't know why this night had to be any different, but for some reason I just didn't feel like arguing with her.

So when she asked me to stay like she had done time and time before, I began to give her that "don't even think about it" look; and just as I was about to take the liberty of reminding her why I was here; I felt a slight migraine approach. I finally gave in taking a seat and ordering. I, Miss No Outside Bedroom Contact, willing gave into to the torture of having dinner with this woman.

We sat there eating and talking about the little things in our lives. It made me want nothing more, than to get this night over with and reconvene with our good sex. Catherine on the other hand, had plans of her own.

Just when I thought the night couldn't get any worse, she pulled me out of the safety of my chair and made me join her for a dance. I, of course made it quite clear that I wasn't in the mood to dance, especially not with her; and like she did so many times before, ignored my blatant attempts to ruin the moment.

I was actually beginning to enjoy the close contact. Her body heat was an unusually pleasant feeling; comfort and security began to affect me as she increased her hold on my body, and I was starting to think of things I had spent almost four months convincing myself I could only think about if it was Grissom. I tried to deny my heart, telling myself that it was nothing more then the exhausted state I was in. But somehow, she managed to make an un-welcome connection to my heart. And the way I was staring at her now, told a whole different version of the story.

I had to give her credit; her persistence and personality were more then flattering. I knew what she was trying to do; she was trying to change my mind. She wanted me to feel for her, the person I was "just fucking", the same way I felt about Gil. She wanted me to find room in my heart for her; and possibly even be open to the opportunity that this could turn into more.

I didn't want to be angry with her, believe me I tried to remain calm; but I couldn't help feeling a little betrayed by her actions. I warned her that this wasn't ever going to pass go. She was aware of my intentions, so why couldn't she just accept my wishes, and go on.

After we danced, I noticed her eyes searching for some kind of permission to continue; but all she found was bitterness and cold. I pushed her away, leaving her just standing there with her jaw resting on the floor; while I made my brief exit. Shortly there after, she followed behind me, yelling down the street for me to stop.

"Sara, Sara please stop!"

I don't know why I chose to listen to her; maybe I was having a compassionate moment. But never the less, I turned around and sharply gazed at her, letting her know I wasn't in the mood to play games.

"Catherine whatever you're going to say doesn't need to be said. I don't know what you thought you were doing in there, but I can assure it's over! I told you when we first started this, that I had no interest in perusing a relationship with you. I was just in it for the sex. Now, I'm not sure at what exact time any part of that became unclear to you, but if you would like me to go over the rule list again then I will."

She was pissed now. Her mood shifted from confused to humiliated, then to angry and hurt. She really thought I was going to fall for her. She thought that if she could just get me on one stupid dinner date that I would see how wonderfully charming she was, and allow her to whisk me away to eternal happiness. And if that's how her thought process really works, than we have more then one issue to discuss.

"Sara, I know that in the beginning you just wanted someone to sleep with. Hey, we all do. And I admit that in the beginning the idea of having great sex without the commitment was appealing. But somewhere in the middle of all it, I fell for you. I know it's not what you wanted, and I sure as hell didn't expect it, but the fact of the matter is it happened. I have been trying like hell to make it go away Sara, truly I have. Mostly because I knew that you didn't share the same feelings , but at the end of the day the results are still the same; I want you, and there is no amount of words you can say to me that is going to change my mind. I will keep trying until the day you wake up and see what you are missing. I'm just hoping that somewhere in the back of your heart, you find that love, before it's too late. If there is even one tiny inkling of love for me, then please tell me. If not we can just keep things going the way they are now. I can pretend I don't care, at least I will know that there's no way of changing your mind."

Unfortunately, it's not that easy for me. Now that I know she cares and will always have hope in the back of her mind, I just don't feel right about continuing.

"You know Catherine you really suck right now, you know that? All I wanted was for you to stop by a couple of times a week and have a good time. I wasn't looking for you to fall in love with me; and I most certainly don't want to fuck someone that is just waiting around for me to reciprocate feelings I simply don't have. I don't want to be responsible for your heart breaking, when harsh reality sets in and you find out that I truly meant what I said before about Gil. Catherine I am in love with him. I don't want you and I don't want you to wait around for a miracle. Sometimes you just need to get a clue!"

I might have been a touch to stern on that last statement, because she was crying now. She was throwing her arms up in the air in disbelief that I could be so mean. She had never seen this side of me before, and something tells me that she could have done with out it.

"No clue, Sara Sidle has the audacity to accuse me of not having a clue. That's rich. Sara just tell me something, just when were you anticipating Grissom's big confessional of love towards you? Please have the decency to share with me, just when you thought that was going to happen. Nothing huh! Well let me fill you in on a little 4-1- 1 I picked up from our good friend Mr. Grissom; for the past couple of months, he has been fucking Lady Heather."

I couldn't believe what I had just heard. The shock on my face must have been more apparent then I realized; because she looked a little sorry for breaking the news to me so cruelly.

"That's right Sara, Lady Heather! Not you, in fact, just the other day he told me that he has never really cared about you that way. He was just trying not to hurt you. So you wanted the truth Sara there you go, you got it. Grissom doesn't want you, he never has. You were just some pathetic little play thing in his state of mind. And you can sit there and wait for him to come around an entire lifetime, he still won't want you."

"Kind of like I don't want you, right Catherine!"

Okay, I definitely know this argument could have continued with out that last statement. I felt like the biggest asshole when I saw how hard what I said hit her. I couldn't blame her for being human, she was just doing what felt right and I had to go and degrade her for it.

I had almost expected her to come up with some sort of defense for herself, but she didn't. She just looked at me with those deep blue eyes, revealing how truly idiotic she felt; and waited for me to respond. And when she could tell I had nothing further to say, she merely turned her back to me and ran away as fast she could. It never occurred to me how hard she'd be hit in the heart by my rejection. Catherine Willows always appeared so tough on the outside, but I guess looks can be deceiving.

I spent the entire night, just driving around the city, trying to forget how royally I screwed up. I should have never let things get so out of hand. I should have used my heart instead of my head, maybe then I wouldn't have said half of things I did to her; and maybe, just maybe she would still be here and I wouldn't feel like I lost a part of me.

I found myself pulling into her drive way at two in the morning. I just sat there for an hour trying to work up enough nerve to knock on her door. Every time I thought I had found the right words to say, images of her shattered face appeared in my mind. I missed her and had no desire of a repeat performance; so I chose the simple route, and left her house hoping she wasn't aware I had been there.

The drive home felt more like a battle, rather than a defeat. I had so many feelings and emotions invading my heart that my mental sanity and stability were rapidly disappearing. Arriving home was yet again a challenge within itself. I made my way depressingly up to my apartment, feeling lonelier than ever before. I was hoping to get at least five hours of sleep before I had to go to work tonight, but I knew that wasn't going to happen.

As I sluggishly approached the entry way to my place, I noticed a body resting soundly against my door. It was Catherine. She appeared to have fallen asleep waiting for me to return home. A cross between enthusiasm and terror flew through my veins, my heart sped up, and I felt the sudden urge to faint. Then I focused on her, just lying there. I don't know when my perception changed, but I could have sworn I had never seen a more beautiful site in my whole life. My heart began to melt as she stirred in her sleep, trying to find a more comfortable position.

I tip toed to where she was leaning and I placed one hand on her face and woke her up.

"Catherine, time to get up and go inside. Please sweetie, open your eyes."

Her body shivered at my touch, and she slowly began to regain consciousness. Her eyes fluttered open, adjusting to the light when she looked up at me. Her face was so sleep deprived and her mood reflected it. I silently watched as she pulled me closer to her face and began begging me not to be angry.

"Sara, I'm sorry. I don't want to fight anymore."

She's sorry, what the hell for? I was the one who owed the apology. I couldn't believe she was sorry for her feelings. God Sara, what did you do to this poor woman?

"Cath, don't be sorry. Let me help you up, it's time to go to bed."

I extended my hand out to her and helped her stumble sleepily to her feet. I leaned her against my shoulder as I fished for my keys out of my purse. I unlocked my apartment and as soon as we were across the threshold, I threw my stuff on the side table, and scooped her up in my arms. I wasted no time putting her to bed and then shortly crawling in after her. I know I had said that I didn't do the snuggling thing, but it's funny how my so-called rules were becoming obsolete. I didn't even hesitate at the thought of holding her tightly in my arms all night, it just felt so right.

As far as I was concerned, morning came all too soon. I woke up with the afternoon sun shining brightly in my eyes and a soft restraint holding my body tightly. I looked around the room nervously, until I remembered where I was, and who I was with. I quickly reverted back to loving mode, as I turned my body to face the woman I was sharing my bed with.

She was still out cold, peacefully slumbering unaware of how I was blissfully watching. I knew she would probably get some kind of twisted satisfaction out of knowing I was staring at her while she was sleeping. She would have enjoyed knowing that I now wanted her more than ever and not just for play time. Maybe I'll just let her sleep for a little while longer, so I can try and think of the appropriate things to say. Maybe I can even convince that her, that I am still worth another chance.

She finally came to around 3:30 in the afternoon; and with a frightened, confused, and sleepy glare, she shot up in the bed trying to figure out just where the hell she was. I quickly came to her aid, taking her in my arms and tenderly trying to comfort her.

My loving actions came as nothing more then a huge shock to her. I was beginning to think she felt I was incapable of human emotion. Couldn't say as I blame her! I had tried many times over the past three years of working with her, to distance myself from the truth. I was hurt when she brushed my kindness aside when I offered it, I was upset when she made that little comment to me when all I wanted to do was be nice and buy Lindsey a birthday gift, and I was indeed a wreck when she wouldn't speak to me after I couldn't solve Eddie's case. All of these reasons were the same excuses I used to protect my heart from her when we began our relationship. I didn't do it because I didn't care, I did it because I didn't want to care for someone who could negatively affect me the way she did. I was afraid that I would be the one who carelessly fell and would have to go through the same rejection she is obviously going through right now.

I did have feeling for Gil Grissom, and I think I always will, but they weren't as strong as they were four months ago. I didn't find myself wanting to stay late at night just so we could work together, I wasn't hanging around him eagerly wanting to do experiments with him, and I sure as hell wasn't having the same thoughts about him as I did before. No, I had finally found something more important to focus all my time and energy on, Catherine. She was the reason I was getting off work on time, she was the reason I could look at the man and not feel like I was missing something in my life, but most importantly, she was the reason I didn't feel so alone anymore. She reluctantly shoved the truth in my face last night, and forced me to take a long, hard look at what was right in front of me. You only have one chance to find the key to your dreams, and I'll be damned if I am going to let it walk out of my life.

Ultimately, it was the best sex we'd ever had. Part of it was because I wasn't so fixated on shutting her out; but mostly it was because we finally kissed. The electricity created when our lips pressed together was the beginning of something I wouldn't have given up for the world. Isn't it funny how things can change!

The End

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