DISCLAIMER: These characters and situations do not belong to me in any way, shape, or form. I have borrowed them as part of my sanity maintenance.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
Heart's a Flush
Hey, how about lunch tomorrow? Just you and me. 'Cause, see, I-I figure that you gotta know where the bodies are buried around here. So to speak.
But there hadn't been any dead bodies, just weeks and weeks of her losing at cards to the older woman instead. Sometimes, Wendy wished dead bodies were the norm, rather than her red-face as she lost hand after hand of whatever card game was being played.
Apparently, or so Catherine had told her, the CSI's used card games as their chosen manner of socializing; it helped centre all their minds to the job.
Wendy stared across the table, trying to gauge just how much Sofia was bluffing. As always, she couldn't read a damn thing in the detective's eyes. She sighed and glanced once more at her hand.
6 ♠ 6 ♣ 6 ♥ 10 ♥ 10 ♦ a full house, one of the best hands she'd ever held in her short poker career.
Just the day after her conversation with Catherine, Sofia had called into her lab, bemoaning the fact she never had time to socialize with her colleagues, and seeing as how Wendy was new to the team and probably lonely, would she, Wendy, like to make a partnership with her to enter the challenge of the CSI card-playing league.
After Grissom had convinced them there was absolutely no point in challenging any of the teams at Bridge, they'd tried to join in with the game of Spades a few times. Grissom had been really good, quickly teaching them a few rules and a few simple strategies, and they'd dared to challenge Catherine and Sara to a girls' only game.
However, it soon became apparent that Sara and Catherine had an uncanny knack of knowing exactly what the other was thinking which didn't bode well for them ever winning a game. At least, Nick had told her, they hadn't had the pleasure of trying to play Catherine and Brass; which, he claimed, was the ultimate challenge.
If the truth were known they'd had just as much success taking on each of the other pairings too; basically, no success whatsoever.
Lately, they'd all decided a regular girls' night would be a great addition to the socializing calendar; Catherine, Sara, Mandy, Jacqui, and even Judy had more than been up for it. It was Wendy who'd come up with the brilliant idea of poker nights; she'd had the vague idea that she and Sofia might stand a chance of winning at that game.
And yet, tonight was the first night she and Sofia had come anywhere near winning a hand. Neither could hold a candle to Sara's scientific stratagem or Catherine's do or die attitude, as always she played the game slyly and without fear.
Tonight, for some reason, both CSI's were completely off the mark, barely raising a ripple of interest in the cards.
Wendy looked over to the couch, catching a glimpse of Sara stroking her thumb across Catherine's cheek and the faintest hint of a tear in the corner of Cath's eye. It was obvious, the two CSI's were preoccupied with something else, but Wendy wasn't going to let their misfortune spoil this hint of a victory; she'd waited many a long week for this win.
Later, she would investigate, but for now, if she couldn't beat the experts, she was damn well going to make sure she beat Sofia. And this was the hand to do it.
Grinning towards Sofia, she concentrated on the important things in life, winning the pot. Pushing another pile of her earlier winnings across the table, she said confidently, "I'll raise you $200."
It was patently obvious that Sofia didn't have another $200; this was Wendy's moment of triumph.
Sofia laughed out loud. "Oh, you've got the bug tonight, Wend. I've never seen you this eager." She looked down at her hand holding tightly onto a flush; a good hand, but not a brilliant one.
She, too, looked over towards Sara and Catherine, knowing without doubt that whatever was troubling Cath tonight, she was in good hands. She didn't need Sofia; Sofia could get on and achieve something for herself.
She loved these nights with the other women; indeed, they helped keep her sane in a mad world, but recently, she'd harboured a desire to spend some quality time with just the woman opposite her. Of course, as was her usual style, she'd never dared ask outright.
Sofia smiled evilly, an idea coming to her; a chance to finally get the lovely woman across from her on a date. Her smile widened as she saw a quick look of fear wash over Wendy's gaze. She couldn't lose.
"I'll give you all my money and, if it's acceptable, a night on the town worth $200 to raise you $100."
This way, if Wendy folded, 'she' had to take Sofia out, and if Wendy won, Sofia had to take her out. Mission accomplished.
The grin that crossed Wendy's face as she realised that exact same point made Sofia's night. The fact that the brunette matched her bet, called her, and thrashed her flush out of sight was neither here nor there.
Sofia had her date.
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