DISCLAIMER: Women's Murder Club and its characters are the property of James Patterson, 20th Century Fox Television and ABC. No infringement intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Thanks to Nikky for the beta!
The Quality of Fear
I'm feeling cold and dissociated, useless, as there's nothing I can do but watch. Claire, calm and focused even in the face of the world horribly changing in a heartbeat, has it covered. She puts pressure on the wound, feeling for the pulse, as blood is staining her hand quickly. Cindy's blood. I can't stand it, I can't look away either.
Distantly, like from under water, I hear Claire call out for Lindsay. I wish I could help, any way, but I'm paralyzed by the fear and confusion on the face of the woman I didn't know I loved. Not until now, as I'm about to lose her.
Lindsay comes running down the stairs, calling for an ambulance. Everyone but me seems to be quite functional in these moments. Lindsay kneels beside Cindy, hand gently touching her stomach. The gesture is brief, but intimate and revealing enough to break me out of my reverie, more than when she takes her hand and calls her honey.
Now is not the moment, but I have to wonder why I pushed so hard for her to date a random good-looking guy we met on the stairs of the Hall. Why it makes me uncomfortable to see her touching Cindy that way.
Every answer is revealed to me all at once with brutal clarity, and yet they have lost their meaning already. In the distance, the sound of sirens wailing is to be heard, while the fear seems to be choking me.
I study Lindsay's shell-shocked expression, long enough to prompt her and look up at me; silently we share a moment of despair and unspoken truths. We've known each other for too long not to know what's on each other's minds.
Then it's back to denial, because right now, we could still lose everything.
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