DISCLAIMER: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and all characters are property of NBC and Dick Wolf.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: This is my first SVU fan fic and the first fan fic I write in English. The idea came to me while watching a scene from "Abomination", where Casey asks Elliot: "You've got kids, you ever wondered if one's gay?" This is the first in a series of three short stories.
SPOILERS: Wanderlust; Sophomore Jinx; Wrong is Right.
TIMEFRAME: Takes place during early season three.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

By Jae


Elliot Stabler piled ham, cheese, lettuce and tomatoes on his sandwich and was just about to add a generous amount of mustard, when the headlights of a car lit up the kitchen.

<Aha! Miss Cinderella returns home - and just in time before I personally turn her into a pumpkin! She's twenty minutes late, didn't Kathy remind her about her curfew?> He leaned against the kitchen counter and craned his neck. <Let's take a look at Prince Charming!>

It took a few seconds for his eyes to adjust to the darkness outside, but then he could make out two figures in the car parked in his driveway.

His eyes skipped over Maureen and zeroed in on the person in the driver seat. Maureen's companion sat with his back to Elliot, so he couldn't identify him - but Elliot could easily see who he wasn't. Unless he had grown out his hair, dyed it blonde and loped off five inches of his height, it wasn't "little" Jimmy DelMonaco, Maureen's boyfriend. It wasn't a boy at all.

<Fhhhuuuuu!> The fist Elliot had clenched around the mustard jar relaxed. <Just some girl from school she's swapping make-up tips with!> He turned off his overprotective-father-mode and returned to hungry-cop-state. One last glance out of the window and he would resume his sandwich-making.

But what he saw out of the corner of his eyes let him stop mid-turn. The knife clattered against the tiles, followed by the mustard jar. In his line of work, Elliot Stabler had seen a lot of things. He could stare down a mass-murderer and look at heinous crime-scenes without blinking, but his daughter kissing another girl...

<A GIRL?!?> Elliot rubbed his eyes, ignoring the mustard he smeared all over his face. <Come on, old boy, you're just tired! You are imagining things!> He took a calming breath and peered out of the window again - to see a laughing Maureen lovingly brush her companion's long hair back and kiss her again.

A car door being shut and a key jingling in the lock shook Elliot out of his paralysis.

"Hi, Daddy," Maureen greeted, "sorry I'm a little late. The movie..."

Elliot just stared at her, not really hearing whatever she said. Her being late was the last thing on his mind. Her lipstick was smeared and he closed his eyes against the image of Maureen and her "girlfriend" in the darkened movie theater.

Maureen rounded the kitchen counter. "What happened to you?" She pointed to the mustard-splattered tiles and the forgotten sandwich.

"No longer hungry," murmured Elliot, still in shock.

"Great! Can I have it? I could eat a horse!" Kissing girls seemed to be hard work.

Elliot watched Maureen and his sandwich climb the stairs. Before he could decide whether he should say something - and what - the door to her room closed behind the girl.

"Elliot?" His wife Kathy appeared in the kitchen doorway. "Was that Maureen? Oh!" She discovered the messy kitchen floor. "Had a little accident in my newly cleaned kitchen, Detective?"

"Yes." He grabbed a dishcloth to clean up the mustard mess.

Kathy stopped right in front of him. "Hey... everything okay? Did anything happen? You didn't ground her again, did you?" She squatted down to help him pick up pieces of broken glass and to study his face. "In that case, I'd have to remind you that you haven't un-ground her from the last time she came home late."

Elliot flicked a drop of mustard from his sleeve. "I didn't ground her."

"What is it then? Work? You and Olivia working a tough case again?"

99 out of 100 times she would have been right. Not this time. "No, it's not... it's just... did Maureen tell you where she's been?"

"Out, to see a movie."

"And who went with her on this movie date?" Elliot had to try really hard not to fix his famous "perp stare" on his wife.

Kathy shrugged. "Just some friends, she said."

"Friends?!" Elliot snorted. <That kiss sure didn't seem just 'friendly' to me!>

Kathy took the dishcloth out of his hands, switched off the lights and dragged Elliot up the stairs. "Okay," she said as soon as the door closed behind them, "and now you sit down and tell me what's going on! The last time I've seen you look this panic-stricken, I'd just told you I was pregnant with twins!"

Elliot offered her a half-smile. He sat down on his side of the bed and exhaled. "I watched Maureen coming home with her... date."

"Elliot! I thought we agreed not to spy on our children? We have to show some trust in them!"

He held up both hands. "It's not Maureen I don't trust-"

"It's her date, I know, I know." Kathy leaned back against the headboard and lay a hand on his knee. "I know it's hard for you, but... do you really think it's fair to transfer your work experiences to Maureen's innocent teen-romances? It's not like she's dating psychotic mass-murderers, you know?"

"No, she's not," Elliot pressed his lips together, "she's dating a girl." <At least, I could arrest the mass-murderer...>

Kathy blinked. "A girl?" She looked at her husband doubtfully. "What gave you that crazy idea?"

"I saw them... in the car... kissing," Elliot ground out between clenched teeth.

For a few moments, Kathy stared silently. Then she patted his knee. "Okay, let's all just calm down and look at this rationally. Are you sure it was a girl?"

"Hello?" Elliot waved a hand in front of her face. "I investigate sex crimes for a living; you might think I know the difference between boys and girls!"

"Okay, okay. And you're sure they were kissing? Really kissing, not just a little peck on the cheek?"

Elliot shook his head vehemently. "That was no little peck! That was a tongue-down-her-throat-let's-check-her-tonsils-kiss!"

Kathy sank back against Elliot's shoulder. "Our daughter kissed another girl," she finally said.

Elliot nodded gravely.

"Well," Kathy said with a small smile, "at least we don't have to worry about an unplanned pregnancy anymore."

Elliot looked at her, half irritated, half admiringly. "How can you be so calm about this?"

A shrug. "Even if she's gay - which we don't know for sure - it's not the end of the world."

"No, of course, it's not." Elliot listened to the echo of his own words. For the thousandth time he congratulated himself for marrying such a calm, level-headed woman. "What do we do now? Should we... talk with her about this?"

"I think it's important that we don't drive her into a corner. Maybe she's not ready to tell us."

A cleft formed between Elliot's eyes. "But we have to do something! We can't just let her deal with it on her own!"

"We won't." Kathy stroked his hand. "Perhaps you could ask Olivia to speak to her, before we sit her down for a talk."

"Liv?" He loved his partner dearly, but she was not the person who came to mind when he needed some parenting advice. "Why should Liv talk to her about... this? I mean... sure, the kids like her and she's always been good with children, but... why should Maureen trust her enough when she feels she can't even talk to us, her own parents?"

Kathy smiled at him. "Perhaps because Olivia can relate to her situation better than we ever could."

Elliot furrowed his brow. "Because she's a woman?" he guessed.

The amused smile became a laugh. "Didn't you just say you knew the difference between men and women? I am a woman myself, if that was the crucial point, we wouldn't have to ask your partner."

"Why do we have to ask her, then?"

Kathy's eyebrow lifted. "You've been partnered with her for four years, which is about forty cop-years, and you have no idea that Olivia is 'family'?"

"Of course she's family. Like I said, the kids like her; she's almost like an aunt. Auntie Liv." He grinned as he thought about calling her that to her face.

His wife rolled her eyes. "Not that family. I think I have to spell it out for you, huh? My sweat, innocent, totally clueless husband: Your partner is gay."

Elliot laughed. "Come on!"

"Olivia - is - gay."

"Ah, nonsense! She just has lousy taste in men, that's all. I mean, she slept with Cassidy, she went out with this perverse reporter and she's told me about some of her ex-boyfriends." Elliot got up and began to pace on the bedside rug. "How could she be gay, that's ridiculous, Kath, really!"

Kathy smiled up at him. "Oh, sure, Elliot, because she slept with men, she can't be gay? I thought SVU taught its detectives more than that about sexuality. A one-night-stand that resulted in the transfer of said one-night-stand from SVU, a few cancelled dates and ex-boyfriends from centuries ago don't exactly constitute a fulfilled heterosexual love-life. Besides... Maureen dated Jimmy DelMonaco and Ryan Witherspoon and yet you saw her kiss a girl."

Elliot stopped and buried his face in his hands. "But I prefer to think that she never slept with those two or any other boy."

"Or girl," Kathy added.

He sank back onto the bed and scratched the back of his head. "You really think Liv could be a lesbian? Isn't that just stereotyping? A strong woman in a traditionally male-oriented job..."

"I haven't asked her, but I'm pretty sure she's at the very least not gender-discriminating when it comes to her choice in life- and bed-partners."

"And what makes you so sure?" Elliot still couldn't believe it. In the four years they worked together, wouldn't Olivia tell him something that important about herself?

"Oh, yes, because you cops just LOVE to talk about your emotions! Those introspective cops are every psychologist's wet dream!" Kathy said, as if she could read his thoughts. "Besides, it's not exactly something you mention over coffee and donuts."

Elliot put his hands on his hips and playfully glared at his wife. "How come I married a woman who's so passive-aggressive towards New York's finest?"

"Don't worry, sweetheart, I can't resist a man in uniform." She tugged him down onto the bed and kissed him. "About Olivia... remember the department's Christmas party last year?"

Elliot laughed. "Munch preaching about the jeweler's capitalist Christmas-conspiracy, Fin crashing into the punch bowl and the Captain desperately trying to avoid dancing with the Commissioner's wife... that's not something you forget!"

"Aside from these highlights, you remember everyone brought a date? Even Munch brought this pretty nurse..."

"... who abandoned him after the hors d'ouevres." Elliot smirked. "But, yes, I remember: Liv didn't bring a man - but she didn't bring a woman either!"

Kathy brushed her hair behind an ear. "She didn't need to bring her, because she was already there. Ever notice how she helped Alex clean the punch stains from her dress?"

"Cleaning clothes is a sign of lesbianism?" Elliot grinned.

"Not the cleaning itself... it was the way she touched her, the way she looked at her... you don't look like that at someone who's just a colleague - at least I hope, you don't look at your colleagues like that!" She winked at him.

Elliot scratched his head. "I don't know, Kathy... Liv and Alex... I still can't see it."

"If you don't believe me, you could always ask them," Kathy suggested, "it might be a good practice for our little chat with Maureen." She rested her head on the pillow and turned off her bedside lamp. "Let's just sleep on it, okay?"

"Alright." Elliot slapped his pillow and prepared for another sleepless night, worrying about one of his kids.

The End

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