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SPOILERS: 2.17 Ham Sandwich

By Jaina


"You slept with my husband?" 

It's late at Lockhart & Gardner. It's dark and quiet and there's no one left in the office except for the most overworked of junior associates. 

"He wasn't your husband then." Kalinda says it as quietly as she says everything else. And she means it - not that Peter Florick hadn't been well and truly married at the time - but rather that she hadn't known Alicia. He hadn't been Alicia's husband to her at the time, but just another man. Her boss. The person she needed to get what she needed accomplished. It was that simple. 

"So that makes it all better? I should just forgi-" Alicia bit her words off. "I should just forget this ever happened?" 

Kalinda had the feeling that wasn't what Alicia had been about to say. 

"No." That would never happen of course. Alicia had been through too much, already weathered her husband's infidelities in the public eye. Yet this cut deeper. Even though it was years ago. 

"Stop being so damn unflappable." 

Stop being so you, Alicia might as well have said. It didn't work that way. 

"What do you want from me?" Kalinda asks. She isn't sure what role to play here. She won't apologize, won't tell Alicia it meant nothing. It would be an insult to the woman's intelligence, another blow to an already-bruised heart, that Kalinda didn't feel like delivering. 

Alicia glared, her arms folded over her chest. "I don't know. Not to have to hate you." 

"Then don't," Kalinda said with a shrug. 

Alicia stared at her like she had lost her mind. "You think it's that easy?" 

"I think you're not certain whether to be angry or jealous." 

Alicia stilled, her hands tightening around her biceps. "What are you talking about?" 

Kalinda touches Alicia, the back of her fingers brushing against Alicia's cheek. 

"Don't," Alicia says between clenched teeth, but she doesn't pull away. 

Kalinda's hand opens, her fingers splayed against the side of Alicia's face. Her other hand sinks into Alicia's hair. She can feel the trembling rigidity of Alicia's body as she tilts her head and kisses her, firmly but gently. 

Alicia grabs her wrist tightly enough that Kalinda contemplates the possibility that she'll be able to lift fingerprints from her arm later. Kalinda eases away from her, but doesn't let go. She waits for Alicia to slap her or demand to know why she did it - either thing. But Alicia doesn't do anything, just looks at her. 

Kalinda feels like she sees everything - even though she knows that isn't possible. Her heart pounds. Alicia leans forward and kisses her back, kisses her so thoroughly that Kalinda whimpers, looses track of her surroundings. She can't remember the last time that happened; she can barely remember her name. 

And then Alicia isn't kissing her anymore. 

Kalinda feels bereft - isn't sure how she feels. 

"It's late," Alicia says. "I have to go. The kids, Peter."

Kalinda nods. Alicia is still staring at her with impossibly wide eyes, breathless. It makes Kalinda want to do very foolish things - but she has better self-control than that. Almost as good as Alicia's. 

So all Kalinda does is stand there and watch Alicia walk away - just like she has so many times before.

The End

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