DISCLAIMER: CSI and its characters are the property of Jerry Bruckheimer and CBS. No infringement intended.
WARNING: Mention of self harm, non-explicit description of child abuse.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Kiss it and Make it Better
By Babydykecate


At first, Sara hid. When Catherine's eyes fell upon her scars the first time they made love, she only answered with silence and diverted eyes. She silently begged for Catherine to not ask, and Catherine could not help but comply. But even in their greatest moments of intimacy, of closeness, of trust-the darkness of the past distanced them. Soon Catherine tired of ignoring the red, puffy eyes, the silent darkness, and a fresh red line across the older scars. Despite her respect for Sara, Catherine could no longer stay silent.

It was after they made love, with Sara silent in her arms, that Catherine first asked.

"What exactly happened?" Catherine asked. She didn't have to explain what she meant.

Sara's eyes clouded before hardening. She turned in Catherine's arms and got up. Throwing on a bathrobe, she grabbed a cigarette and headed to the balcony overlooking Sin City.

Catherine was afraid she'd widen the distance between, and just plain frustrated, but she refused to just let this go.

The next time Catherine asked, she'd thought more, planned more. It was another of the puffy-eyed days. Catherine gently took Sara's hand after she opened the bathroom door. Catherine sat Sara on a chair and kneeled before her.

"I love you, Sara Sidle. Nothing could easily change that. I want you to be able to trust me. I understand why it's hard for you, but this silence is hurting us. Please. I want you to know that I'm not going anywhere, not matter what you tell me. I won't judge you. I won't pity you. I won't fear you. And I'll never be disgusted by you. I love you. Completely. I want to hold you close and keep you safe. Please, Sara let me in. Tell me something. It doesn't matter how small a story, how unimportant it might seem. Tell me something and let me prove to you I'll stay."

Sara almost lets a tear leave her eye before she blinks it away.

"When I was 6, my dad was really angry. He slammed my hand in the car door. At first, I hoped it might have been an accident. Then he did it 3 more times." Sara's voice quivers, but she says it all in one breath, only remembering to breathe when Catherine takes her hand.

"Is there a scar?" Catherine asks softly.

Sara moves her other hand into the light, showing a pale line running across her palm. Catherine gently brings the scarred hand to her lips and kisses the scar.

"I love you Sara. He may have left scars baby, but he never touched the strength, the grace, the compassion inside you." Catherine whispered before she pulled Sara into her arms. She could swear she felt Sara tremble for a second before she returned the hug. Catherine simply pulled her closer, held her tighter. Finally she felt Sara relax into her arms, letting go a little of the heavy darkness.

That night, they started their tradition. Whenever Sara wanted or needed to, she'd tell Catherine the history of a scar and Catherine would kiss it and hold her tight. Sara told Catherine the basics of the worst night of her life, but she wasn't exactly sure how you kiss a scar on a heart. At least that was what she told herself so she didn't have to tell her all the terrible details.

It wasn't until they'd been together for two years that Sara was finally able to tell her. Sara was sure that she'd lose Catherine once she let her seen the most gruesome darkness, the most vile scar. Yet she had to know. Know if it was possible for someone to love her once they knew the truth. She found out it was. Catherine simply placed a kiss upon her heart, and wrapped her tight in her arms like always. Catherine couldn't stop the tears that fell, but Sara knew they weren't pity. Catherine was her other. Every scar was hers too. And Sara's anger was hers as well.

Darkness is too much for one person to bear alone. But if you can find someone who will stay and kiss the darkness away, and hold you until you feel safe… You just might find that two people can handle darkness. They can even make it fade like a scar. It's never gone, but it no longer hurts. Just the memory.

The End

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