DISCLAIMER: This postulation was based on the little bit of information I gathered from the preview and subsequent commercials. Most of which has now been proved false or inaccurate. Inaccuracies you will find in this story include, but are not limited to, the location of Elliot's wound, the name of the judge that was killed, Olivia's presence in the courtroom, and Star Morrison's total involvement in this plot. I do have a response fic that is actually based on the entire episode, complete with some actual dialog from the episode, so you will have both.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Also, in an attempt to pop the urgency in this story up a few notches, I opted for third-person, present tense. Sorry if it makes you crazy.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
SPOILERS: Marginally for RAW
One Day/One Life
Olivia Benson is hyper-focused...and nauseous. Her partner, Elliot Stabler, lies somewhere beyond the chaos in front of her, pressing his hands against the wound in his side. John Munch, luckier, kneels against the wall contemplating the very real, very visceral and freely bleeding pain in his ass.
Judge Terhune is hidden from view behind his bench but Olivia does not think he is alive. Two shots took him down, one to the chest and one to the head.
She adjusts her stance and re-aims her weapon. There are five others with their weapons also trained on Star Morrison but she cowers behind the human shield she has chosen.
Olivia tries not to tremble, tries not to blink. The adrenaline rushing through her body throbs with one need, one demand.
There is also a frighteningly feral secondary thought--kill the Morrison bitch--that Olivia tries not to dwell on even though her bones ache with the need to act. A mantra rolls through her mind with all the subtlety of a flash flood.
Please don't hurt her, please don't hurt her, please don't hurt her, please...
Casey Novak is pissed. How did the weapons get into the courthouse? How did Star Morrison manage this? How could she be so stupid as to be caught for use as a shield?
John and Elliot--her friends--are down. Judge Terhune is most likely dead. Six police officers have their weapons trained on her which she finds a bizarre counterpoint to the weapon being held to her head.
A shrill drawling screech erupts from behind her left shoulder.
"I'll kill her, I swear I will!"
Before anyone can respond to Star's assertion, Casey coldly and calmly says, "No, you won't."
Star jerks Casey by her wrists which she has pinned behind her back. The gun rattles as her eyes dart from Casey to the officers and back.
"Shut up! Shut up!" she shouts, pulling Casey backward a few feet. "You're a slave to the mud people! You're nothing! Shut up!" She presses the gun harder to Casey's temple and Casey becomes even more angry.
She searches the faces of the officers holding weapons on her and her captor and finds only one she can count on.
Intense darkening eyes lock with her own. She sees the fear, the worry held in them but she also sees the caged animal of Olivia's rage. A rage that is finely honed and surgically precise, unlike Elliot's more diffuse, more generalized fury. A rage that will make the difference here today.
"Shoot her, Olivia," she says quietly.
The entire room seems to hold its breath in shock. Olivia's only reaction is a slight widening of her eyes. Star's stunned silence wears off quickly and she angles Casey and herself toward the NYPD detective in question.
"I'll kill her, Olivia," promises the Nazi racist. "Don't shoot."
"Shoot her, Olivia." The quiet order follows on the heels of Star's pledge. "It's okay."
"No! No, Olivia! Don't listen to her!" Star pulls the gun from Casey's temple and shoves it into her neck right under her jaw. This does not faze the attorney.
"Shoot her, Olivia." Her eyes plead with the detective. "You can't negotiate with her. End this."
"Shut up!! Shut up, you mud whore!!" Star unravels fast, like a tightly wound ball of twine accidentally let loose at the top of the stairs. Casey is now walking the finest line of her life.
"Shoot her, Olivia. You have to shoot her. You can't let her walk out of here." She nods ever so slightly and prays the dark-haired detective sees the signal.
Olivia is almost paralyzed by indecision until she sees that movement and then she knows. Whatever it is, Casey has a plan.
She hopes it isn't a plan that will get the beautiful redhead killed.
"I promise you, Olivia," shrieks Star, "I will kill her!! I will blow her fucking head off!!"
The gun moves again, from neck back to head, a head haloed in red-gold. Casey grimaces and closes her eyes for a tiny moment of prayer.
Please let this work. And if it doesn't, please don't let Olivia feel responsible. Please take care of her.
When she is finished she opens her eyes and pins Olivia with a singular verdant gaze. She has only one chance. One chance. She thinks it's all she needs.
"Shoot her, Olivia. Shoot her. NOW!" And on the last word she pitches forward and to the right, tucking her head against her chest and shoulder. Two shots ring out and Casey feels the heat and power of the projectiles as they zing past her--close but not too close. She continues forward to the floor and hits hard as Star drops behind her, silenced forever.
The room explodes around her. The other officers rush forward to swamp Star Morrison just in case she still possesses enough life in her body to squeeze a trigger. Olivia pulls Casey behind her as she continues to cover the downed supremacist. There are calls for medical personnel to assist Elliot, John and Judge Terhune. Members of the gallery rush for the door. The bailiffs hurry the jury from their box and into the hallway.
In the confusion, it is exceedingly easy for Casey Novak to slip unnoticed from the room.
Olivia Benson is frantic. No one has seen Casey Novak since her daring yet calculated bid to end the hostage situation on her own terms. Olivia has tried the attorney's cell phone only to find it abandoned in the redhead's briefcase still on the prosecutor's table.
She worries that maybe there were more conspirators and that they are holding Casey hostage even though the courthouse has been deemed "secure" and the focus is now on resuming business as usual. She dreads finding that her worst fear is true now that she's turned in her gun and shield after the shooting, per regulations. Cragen has sent her home until the review is complete; has told her it was a "good shoot" and not to worry. She plans on heading right to the hospital to see about Elliot and John. But she won't go without seeing Casey, without making sure she is okay.
Casey, in her mind, is the real hero of the day. It was the ADA's plan that allowed Olivia to stop Star Morrison. It was the ADA's life on the line.
Now all she wants is to see Casey. Alive. Whole. Safe.
She pushes into the women's bathroom in the hallway outside the judge's chambers. It's not a heavily-trafficked area but Casey would know where it was.
"Casey? Casey, are you in here?" She wonders if she sounds as panicked as she feels.
"Liv?" comes the weak reply. Olivia runs to the handicapped stall at the end and pushes the unlatched door open only to find Casey on the floor, her eyes red and puffy from crying, her hair disheveled. The sharp scent of bile lingers in the small space. Olivia realizes Casey has been vomiting.
Olivia drops to the floor beside the attorney and tries to catch her eye. "Hey. Hey, it's okay, honey," she whispers, pulling the unresisting younger woman against her. A fresh wave of tears crests and breaks, washing down Casey's ruddy cheeks. "Let's get you home." She moves to help the young woman stand but Casey clutches at her sleeve.
"They're fine, Casey. It doesn't look like Elliot's wound was as serious as we thought. We'll know more in a little while. John was shot in the ass." She chuckles ruefully. "That's been coming for years. Years."
"I want to go with you. To the hospital. I want to go."
"Casey, it's not necessary. You should go home. Change clothes. Rest." She rocks the redhead unconsciously. She's a hair's breadth from kissing her temple when she realizes what she's about to do and she stops herself.
Casey shakes her head. "No. I want to go. I just need to wash my face...brush my teeth. Could you--?"
"--Get your briefcase for you? Sure. You'll be okay here until I get back?"
Casey closes her eyes and rests her head against the cold tile. "Yeah. Yeah, I'll be fine. Just don't take too long."
"I won't." Olivia brushes a few strands of red out of Casey's face and the attorney opens her eyes. Their gazes lock for a long moment until Olivia rises from the floor. "I'll be right back," she offers and in an instant she is gone.
Fifteen minutes later they are in a loaner on the way to St. Vincent's. Olivia drives like she does everything else. With intensity.
They are silent at first, each lost in thoughts too dark or too confusing to share. But Casey has a question and no choice but to ask it.
"Olivia, did you... Is Star Morrison dead?"
Olivia glances at the attorney but she is still looking out the window of the car, watching the faceless buildings as they pass.
"Yes," she says. The finality in her voice is unyielding.
Casey's eyes close. "I'm sorry," she whispers earnestly. She wants to touch Olivia, to rest her hand on her forearm. She wants the apology to be physical. As if that will make it more sincere. In the end, she keeps her hands to herself.
Olivia's dark eyes again light upon Casey's form. "I'm not," she says succinctly. For her, the discussion is over. She wanted Star Morrison dead and she got her wish. Her only regret is that the bitch didn't suffer.
"No buts, Casey. It was either you or her and I picked you. I would again. Every time." She turns her face away from the attorney. "Star Morrison can rot in Hell," she adds quietly. "I won't lose sleep over killing her."
They meet Kathy and the kids at the hospital. Fin and Cragen show up shortly after. John is being patched up in the ER and Fin goes to sit with him until the docs are done. He takes every opportunity he gets to mock John's injury.
Cragen, Olivia and Casey stay with Kathy and the kids as they await word of Elliot. He is in surgery and though the doctors say they have every confidence that the wound is not severe, there's always the chance that it is much more serious than first imagined. The minutes drag on into hours and Casey ends up with Elizabeth Stabler's tow-head in her lap as the child dozes.
She was surprised when the little girl hugged her and nearly speechless when she curled up in her lap. Now she absently strokes the girl's hair as Kathy and Olivia both look on. Kathy's smile is a knowing one; Olivia's is just pleased. By the time the doctors finally emerge from the OR, both Casey and Elizabeth are asleep.
Elliot is fine. The doctors explain that the bullet hit one rib, ricocheted to another and then lodged in a third. A shard of bone from one of the ribs compromised a lung but they repaired it and essentially he'll be as good as new in just a week or so. Because he's still in recovery, though, it will be a while before anyone can see him.
Kathy's relief is a palpable thing. The kids hug each other and their mother. Cragen takes Olivia aside.
"Take Casey home, Liv," he tells her. "She's practically asleep on her feet and you can't do any more here. I'll tell Elliot that you both waited until he came out of surgery. You can come see him tomorrow."
Olivia steals a glance at the ADA and nods absently. She goes to Casey's side and tells her they are leaving now. Casey sleepily acquiesces but says a few words to Kathy and the kids before she takes her leave. She gets another hug from Elizabeth for her trouble. Apparently she's made a friend today.
In the hallway outside the waiting room, Casey blinks owlishly under the fluorescent lights. Not wanting to get separated from Liv, she reaches out and takes one of the detective's hands. It is an unconscious action on her part but Olivia shivers anyway.
At Casey's apartment, Olivia gently steers the ADA into her bathroom and orders her to take a hot shower. When Casey looks at her with pleading eyes, she rushes to reassure her. "I'll be here when you get out. I promise."
After all, where is she going to go? She's on leave until the inquest is over. Her apartment is cold and lonely. It has even started to rain. She reasons with herself that being here is as good a place as any but she knows differently. In her heart, being here is the only place to be.
She waits until she hears the water turn on and then she heads to the tiny kitchen. She opens the fridge and then the cupboards looking for something to make for the young attorney to settle her stomach. She finds a half-liter of out-of-date orange juice, a jar of pickles, a Styrofoam take-out box with something unidentifiable in it, three packets of onion soup, a box of Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, and a nearly empty bottle of olive oil.
"Obviously she spends as much time in her kitchen as I do in mine," she mutters.
She searches the drawers until she finds the one that holds all the take-out menus. She paws through them until she finds something suitable and she dials the number.
A woman answers. "Casey ADA! What can I get for you today?"
Olivia sniggers to herself. She must have picked the right menu. She explains the problem--in very general terms--and the woman assures Liv she knows exactly what to do. Five minutes later, Olivia has ordered two servings of Coconut Basil Chicken soup, four spring rolls, an order of pineapple fried rice, and an order each of Lemongrass Chicken and Chicken Green Curry.
While she waits for the food to arrive, Olivia finds a bag of fresh coffee beans in the freezer and opts to make some coffee. They could both use a little caffeine.
When Casey finally materializes from the back of the apartment, she smells something so heavenly that her stomach growls in spite of herself. Her hair is still damp and she is wearing a pair of hip-hugging flannel pj pants and a comfy t-shirt. In shades of pale green, of course.
Olivia looks up from the couch, then hurriedly stands. She is suddenly and inexplicably nervous. "I thought you could use some food," she explains. "I ordered out."
"I see that." Her voice is nearly flat but inside Casey is melting. She approaches the couch and looks down at the feast laid out before her. She quickly reaches for the steaming cup of coffee and takes a sip even before sitting. "Oh God, that's good." She takes another sip and then sits, criss-crossing her legs under her. She looks up at Olivia, standing awkwardly with her hands in her jeans pockets.
"Sit down, Liv," she orders softly. "I can't eat all of this myself." She grins at the detective who briefly grins back. Olivia sits.
She's removed all the food from its take-out containers and has plated it on what she has determined is seldom-used dishware. She gestures at a bowl of milky white liquid populated by dark green leaves and chunks of chicken. "The woman on the phone said this was your favorite soup. I thought it would help settle your stomach. You know, from earlier."
Hesitant Olivia is three times as endearing as any other version of Olivia Casey has ever seen and her stomach flip-flops in response. She's used to having that reaction when Olivia is around so it barely registers. Still, her voice is quiet when she asks, "How did you know to call this place?"
Sheepish, Olivia shrugs. "I didn't. I liked the picture on the front of the menu."
The ADA laughs. It's the same reason she called them the first time.
Two hours later the remains of the dinner litters the coffee table and Casey yawns from her newly-claimed spot: head in Olivia's lap. They are watching banal TV--America's Funniest Home Videos--and have long since stopped laughing at pinata accidents and kittens falling into fishtanks.
Olivia doesn't realize that she is stroking Casey's hair in the same way that Casey stroked Elizabeth's at the hospital. Casey, however, treasures the light touch even though it is making her sleepy. She is unable to stop a second, deeper yawn.
Olivia had ignored the first yawn but she has no choice but to acknowledge the second one. "You should go to bed, Casey. Get some rest."
Casey shakes her head. "I'm not tired," she protests through another yawn. She's been caught, she knows. She doesn't want Olivia to leave but she doesn't know how to ask her to stay.
Olivia doesn't want to leave but she doesn't know how to ask if she can stay.
"Come on," she says, nudging Casey up off her lap. "Go to bed. I'll clean up out here then let myself out."
Casey nods. "Okay." She bites her lip then sighs and turns around, heading for her bedroom.
Olivia gathers up the dishes from the coffee table. In the kitchen she puts leftovers into plastic containers and stacks them neatly in the nearly empty fridge. She pushes up her sleeves and is just about to fill the sink so she can do the dishes when Casey calls quietly from her bedroom doorway.
The detective looks over her shoulder at the ADA, only to find her hesitantly crossing the room with a bundle in her hands. The younger woman won't look her in the eyes.
"Case? What is it, honey?"
Casey takes in a tiny sip of air. "Um..." Her voice catches on emotions she is not confident in sharing and she takes a moment to clear her thickening throat. "If I ask nicely...would you stay? Tonight?" She glances up at the older woman and quickly looks away. "You could sleep on the couch...or something." She takes another shallow breath. "I...I don't want to be alone."
Olivia turns off the water in the sink and walks toward Casey. She takes the bundle from her and finds a pair of yoga pants and one of Casey's "Sex Crimes" softball jerseys. She smiles and puts them gently on the small dining room table to her right. With a tender touch she lifts Casey's chin, allowing soft, moss-green eyes to meet her own.
"The couch, huh?" she asks, eyes sparkling.
"Or...something." Casey trembles...no, shivers with desire. How long has she wanted this? Is it really happening?
"I think I vote for 'or something'," whispers Olivia and she leans forward. Their breaths still in anticipation. Casey makes a tiny sound in the back of her throat.
Their first kiss is so soft, so ephemeral, that neither woman actually believes it took place. Casey darts forward as soon as it has ended to taste Olivia's lips again...and again. Finally she twines her fingers in Liv's rusty, russet hair and holds her still, capturing the detective's mouth with her own.
This kiss is longer...deeper...sweeter... It is everything Olivia has dreamed of and more. It is the physical reality of Casey's heart's fondest hope. It is the bridge that spans the gap between them that the day has wrought.
When they part, there are tears in Olivia's eyes and she rests her forehead against Casey's.
"I was afraid today, Casey. She would have--"
Casey covers Olivia's lips with quivering fingers. "She didn't. You were there. You were there for me."
The older woman closes her eyes. "But--"
"No buts, Olivia," she says, the irony not lost on either woman. "You were there for me. And now you're here with me. That's what I wanted all along..."
They don't make love that night. Instead, shyly, they lie entwined in each other's arms in Casey's bed and kiss for a long, long time. Olivia sifts red-gold strands of the finest silk between her fingers and searches Casey's eyes for shades of meaning she never thought she'd get to see this close. Casey explores the sweet contours of Olivia's face with trembling fingertips and fights back tears of relief and disbelief.
One kiss is too eager and their teeth knock together...not hard enough to do damage but hard enough to cause them both to laugh. They adopt a "do over" mentality almost immediately and this kiss goes off without a hitch. When they part, Olivia wraps Casey up in her arms and cradles her close.
"Thank you, Casey," she whispers, her mouth pressed against the redhead's temple.
"For being here with me. For being here for me."
Casey knows what Liv is saying but she also feels the moment. It balances on the finest point of emotion between joyous and morose. It could go either way. Casey opts to help it fall on the side of joy.
"Oh that?" She laughs softly. "That's nothing," she assures the detective. "As easy as Key Lime pie."
Their quiet laughter echoes in the room even after they fall asleep.
In the morning, the first rays of sunshine break through the sheer curtains hanging in Casey's bedroom window. They alight on Olivia Benson's bare arms and back as she raises herself over the young woman moaning softly beneath her. The detective gazes upon her lover's features and gossamer golden light glosses both of them and traps them in a silence born of seduction and awe.
They are both bare to each other's touch now, sleepwear having been shyly teased away from skin as soon as the morning broke across the last vestiges of the night and Casey claimed Olivia's lips in something more than a kiss of merely 'hello'. Olivia glides over the soft, pale skin of the attorney like a breath of spring air and lowers herself to plant kisses in places she knows they will bloom.
A teasing kiss on petal-pink lips. A vine of kisses winding from ear to pulse point. Vibrant sprays of kisses across collarbone and shoulder. Predatory suckling of dusky nipples.
Casey's desire flowers beneath Olivia's attentions and the older woman sweeps over her body like a fast-moving storm. Raining kisses there, oh yes, and warming pale skin here, yes please. Sunlight and summer winds, gentle rains and whispered breezes, morning dew and a kiss of moonlight give way as the tempest builds.
An Autumn amber halo rustles along the pillowcase then whips from side to side.
"Olivia," Casey whispers, and it is half plea and half surprise. Slender limbs reach and touch and are tossed by the storm. The air between them thickens with power and need. Rusty-iron eyes darken with a rain that grass-green eyes thirst for. A rolling, thunderous growl builds and builds...
Olivia's mouth is everywhere, nipping and biting, soothing flashes of pain with tongue and lips. Her fingers are everywhere, teasing, touching, tempting, enticing, trembling with their need. Her body is beautiful and bare, taut like a bow, strung tight with desire.
"Casey..." Her whisper echoes the one that came before. She feels inside her the pressure of her need, filling her up, stretching thin her skin until she feels as if she will burst. Like a balloon. Like a soap bubble. There is so much she wants to say and yet no words.
Then Olivia's tempest coalesces and electricity--along with her cry of passion realized--arcs across the room with the singular precision of a lightning strike.
Her mouth claims Casey's and plunders it, capturing tongue and moans alike, twisting both, deepening kiss and craving. Her fingers are deep inside her lover, thrusting, urgent and unstoppable. Her body blankets Casey's, at once riotous and rootless, raging for release.
Casey calls out for Olivia and Olivia answers with yet another crushing kiss.
Casey keens with her body's imminent deliverance and Olivia gifts her with a deeper touch.
Casey stills herself on the knife's edge, holding breath and body fixed and stormless, until Olivia, with one last plunge into her lover's depths, cracks the sky.
The Heavens open above them and they are drenched to the bone, again and again, by their love.
Casey's breath comes in soft gasps and a fine sheen of perspiration covers her when she finally opens her eyes. Olivia is collapsed half on top of her and half curled up at her side, her belly heaving with her own labored breaths.
"Come here," whispers the younger woman, tugging ineffectually on Liv's limp form. The detective tries to rally but is unsure of her destination.
"Where?" she asks, confused.
"Here," she says again, as if that makes it plain. But she tugs again and Liv uncurls into Casey's arms. The redhead twitches the blankets back into place over them and kisses Olivia's forehead. "God, you're so beautiful," she breathes. "Go back to sleep, okay? I want to hold you."
Olivia's muscles betray her fear and she stiffens. Casey, already nearly asleep herself, rouses enough to gaze at her lover. She sees the doubt painted in shades of mahogany and cherrywood. She understands--with sudden clarity--that it was one thing for Olivia to sleep entwined within the shelter of her arms when they were not yet lovers and it is another thing entirely for her to do so now that they are. This is unfamiliar territory for the detective. Casey has no idea how to reassure her.
She starts by kissing Olivia's forehead again.
"I won't make you stay if you don't want to," she says softly, nuzzling her older lover's hair, inhaling the earthy scent of her shampoo. "But if it makes a difference, I'm afraid, too."
Olivia shifts and looks up, her eyes searching Casey's unreadable but beautiful green gaze.
"Of what?" she asks. It is not the question Casey was expecting but she answers without hesitating.
"Of falling too far, too fast. Like a meteorite, burning up in the atmosphere." She sifts strands of sorrel silk through her fingers. "When I woke up yesterday, this was still just a dream. Now it's real. And it's wonderful and it hurts at the same time and I feel like laughing and crying and screaming all at once. But I'm sure that would scare the Hell out of you. Not to mention me. And the neighbors. So instead, I just want to hold you while you sleep. I want to feel you next to me. I want to wake up to the sound of your heartbeat and make crazy, wild love to you again and then take you out for breakfast at my favorite restaurant to see what you will order. I want to taste the coffee you drink when I kiss you later. I want all of that and more. Because you make me feel so alive and I've come too close to death." She averts her gaze for a moment, then returns it. "If you're afraid too maybe we can make a deal. Let me hold you while you sleep now and when we wake up again, we can decide if we want to try it again another day. Tonight even. That's it, Olivia. That's all I'm asking for. One day. Repeated or not as we see fit."
Olivia smiles at the younger woman. "Your bravery astonishes me," she whispers. "You astonish me."
Casey laughs and blushes at the same time. In her best bad Southern accent, she retorts, "Aww, nobody here but us chickens."
Olivia laughs too, caught off guard by the humor. As her jollity fades, though, she makes a decision. Muscles unknit themselves and tendons relax. The detective rearranges herself within the attorney's arms and sighs comfortably.
"One day," she muses as she tightens her arms around Casey's pale body. "One day, repeated as we see fit." She closes her eyes and grins. "You have a deal, Counselor."
Relieved almost to the point of tears, Casey manages a broken sounding, "Oh, good." Disbelieving of her good fortune, she carefully wraps Liv up in her arms and closes her eyes, content to fall asleep just like that--even if it means she might never wake up again.
A few minutes later, her eyes are heavy and her thoughts drift to and fro like clouds in a windy Summer sky. Just before her dreams take her, a sleepy voice asks, "Casey?"
"Mm?" The warmth of her lover's body and the satiation of her bones render it impossible for her be more alert.
"I love you."
Even though she thinks she might never sleep again, as high as she is and as in love, somehow Casey finds herself waking in Olivia's arms. Over and over.
One day. Repeated.
For a lifetime.
Return to Law & Order: SVU Fiction
Return to Main Page