DISCLAIMER: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and all characters are
property of NBC and Dick Wolf. If they were mine, I would be rich and
famous. I am none of those things.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Just a teensy weensy story to dip my toes in the world of L&O: SVU fandom. Constructive criticism is always welcome, since this is my first time and I just want to be sure I don't mess up. The story is told using Olivia's POV. I don't remember well the details surrounding Angels, so if I mess up, I apologize. Again, I hope you enjoy. Peace.
SPOILERS: Some reference to the episode Angels.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
That was the first coherent thought that popped into my mind when I spotted her in the crowded restaurant. Not a very mature thought, but it was very appropriate for the moment. Elliot had gone to the bathroom, so I had a couple of private moments to enjoy the sight all to myself.
She was sitting by herself on a small dining table. Her blonde hair, silky and full even under the dim lights, fell softly behind shoulders. I had never seen her in such a risqué dress: a pretty little number, devil red in color, hanging by little straps on her shoulders. I remember that particular detail because my mind suddenly drifted to my fantasy world, and I imagined myself pushing those little straps over her shoulders and down her arms, until the dress fell like a silk curtain around her feet and she was standing in front of me in all of her naked glory.
Of course, the fantasy didn't end there... so you can imagine that I was more than a little flustered when I felt a familiar hand on the small of my back. I yelped slightly, turning around to face the rude intruder.
My reaction did nothing but amuse my partner.
"You okay, Liv?" Elliot asked me, a slight smile playing on his lips. My partner may be like the brother I never had, but I wasn't about to share what I was going to do with the whipped cream. "Yeah, just thirsty," I replied, suddenly very aware at how dry my mouth was. I looked at her one more time out of the corner of my eyes, and I made sure to record every little detail about her.
I had a very good memory... at least where ADA Alex Cabot was concerned.
"I'll buy you a tall one when we finish with this case. You found her yet?" Elliot asked me as he dodged the tray of food that passed dangerously close to his head. I didn't trust my voice to come out just yet, so I just nodded at her table. Elliot followed my direction, and his eyes opened slightly in surprise by the unexpected sight.
"Holy shit," he whispered out loud. I covered my mouth with my hand, trying to suppress a smile from crawling into my lips. Sometimes Elliot and I were too similar for comfort. "Hey, watch it! You are married!" I joked, my voice steady enough for the professional conversation that awaited us.
"I'm married. Not blind. Let's get this over and done with," Elliot said as he handed me the manila folder in his hands. I took the folder from him, took a deep breath, and made my way to her table, Elliot closely behind.
I quickly took the empty chair in front of Alex, while Elliot took an empty chair from a nearby table and placed it next to me, completely ignoring the frown of disapproval from the hostess. I expected a look of surprise in Alex 's face when she caught sight of the two of us, but I think I was even more surprised. She had looked beautiful from afar, but up close and personal. she was nothing short of a dream.
She didn't have her glasses on, a look that I adored, but the opportunity to glance at her warm blue eyes without hindrance was more than welcomed. Her face looked perfectly adorned, with just enough makeup for her to seem without any. But another sight distracted me from her eyes... her lips. They were red... blood red, luscious and inviting by the light of the candles.
I wanted to kiss her... that is, until I remembered that she wasn't there to meet me.
"Detectives," Alex spoke with a slight nod, her voice just loud enough for us to hear her. "You knew we were coming," Elliot spoke. It wasn't a question; it was a statement. "My assistant called me," she replied as she took a sip of her water. The way she moved was downright hypnotic. She looked from Elliot to me, and I found struggling to hold her gaze.
"Well, sorry to interrupt your R&R, but we need something from you," I said, using my best "Kickass cop" voice. "And here I was thinking you were joining me for dinner," Alex said, once again taking a sip from her water. Was she teasing me? No, it wasn't possible. Maybe she was teasing Elliot.
Elliot and I spent the next five minutes trying to convince her that we had enough evidence for a search warrant for Dr. Stewart Lynch. Alex was tough and it was a hard case to sell. Even when we didn't like the hell she put us thru, it was better in the long run. Thanks to her, most of the cases we investigated ended in court, and were not messed up by some fucked-up technicality.
Our conversation was rudely interrupted, however, by a voice coming from behind me. "Ever heard of probable cause?" the voice said. The voice was eerily familiar, and it brought memories as pleasant for me as my last visit to the OB-GYN. Both Elliot and me turned around to see who was the intruder, but the movement didn't stopped me from seeing Alex's amused expression.
"Lambert," Elliot said, as happy by the man's presence as I was. It was Craig Lambert, a defense attorney here in NY and one of the sleaziest men in the planet. He had been solely responsible for freeing a perp that had sexually molested 13 women at NYU. I didn't know if I hated him, after all, being sleazy and without scruples is part of his job, but I certainly disliked him.
And just then I realized that Craig Lambert was there to meet Alex. Scratch the dislike part. I hated him now.
"Craig, give me five minutes," Alex said with a commanding nod. Craig looked at us, obviously amused by our dumbfounded expressions, and finally said, "Sure. I'm gonna make a phone call. Be right back." With that, he turned around and left us alone with Alex.
"Dining with the enemy?" I blurted as soon as I gazed upon Alex. I'm not sure if it came out bitter, or resentful, or amused. I sure as hell was not feeling amused. I couldn't read Alex's expression as she held my gaze for a couple of seconds, which seemed eternal in that situation.
Alex totally avoided my inquiry as she went straight to the point.
"I'll have your search warrant. but it will only be limited to the doctor's house and possessions inside that house. Got it?" Alex said in her most professional voice. "Good. Thanks," Elliot said as he stood up and straightened his jacket. I wanted to stay. I wanted to ask her what the hell was she doing having dinner with a man whose sole purpose was to screw us hard.
But I didn't. Brownie points for me. I simply followed Elliot's lead and stood up. I stared down at her for one second too long, and she held my gaze without any sign of worry. "Enjoy your meal," I finally said, turning around and following Elliot to the exit. I didn't know if it came out as sarcastic, but I sure meant it to be.
Was that jealousy I was feeling? No. yes. maybe. I don't know. I just know I felt betrayed. And it sucked. It didn't made any sense either. Alex and I were nothing more than professional colleagues and casual acquaintances. What did I expected from her? And besides, Craig Lambert was just bad news!
I wasn't sure of what I was feeling as I walked out the restaurant, not without spotting Craig in the back of the crowded restaurant and giving him the nastiest look I could muster, usually reserved for rapists, murderers and abusers.
"That was unexpected," Elliot offered as we made our way to our car. "Tell me about it," I mumbled, trying to hide my shock. "What do you think?" Elliot said, opening the door to the car, but waiting for my answer before he hopped in.
"I just hope she's not blurting things about us in the bedroom," I answered. I sounded harsh and angry, and it caught me off guard. I decided to change the mood. "Besides, we can't interfere in her personal life. So why the hell are we talking about this in the first place?" I added, trying to sound light and succeeding.
At least, I think I succeeded. Elliot gave me one of those "Yeah, right" looks that he usually uses during interrogations, but finally settled into his seat. I followed his lead, and we were on our way to bust a future "bitch in a cellblock".
The next few days were very uneventful, at least in my personal life. That's an understatement. even Elliot eventually goes home to his wife and beautiful kids. My life? Haven't had a date in months, and the most exciting thing that had happened to me was buying the tickets for the Bangles reunion concert. I was married to my work, and believe it or not, it made me happy. It felt good to take these sons of bitches out of the streets. There were days, of course, when the justice system will screw you up the ass and the perps you had worked so hard to bust are freed to roam the streets. But all in all, it was job worth the effort.
I hadn't seen Alex since that night at the restaurant and, truth be told, I hadn't thought about her that much. Must be the fact that I was working on a case involving grown men bringing children to the states to use them as sexual slaves. Yep. that kind of thing can kill any sane persons' sex drive.
But I couldn't keep avoiding Alex forever, and that proved to be right when I was called into her office to discuss my testimony in court involving my conversations with Ernesto Diaz, one of the kids that had been used as a sex slave for the last four years. I wasn't sure what to expect when I came inside her office, but as soon as I stepped in, I was more than grateful for the chance.
Alex was wearing a stylized navy blue suit straight out of Armani's closet. Her skirt reached just above the knee, and her legs were a sight I had the opportunity to enjoy since she was sitting on her desk, just in front of my chair. She had her reading glasses on, and for the life of me, I had never seen someone look as sexier with glasses as she did. She was bending slightly over my written testimony, causing her hair to fall over shoulders and caress the page in front of her.
"Yeah... this is about right," she mumbled as she finally looked up and met my eyes. "Are you ready for tomorrow?" Alex asked me as she crossed her legs and adjusted the length of her skirt. It distracted me... a little. "As ready as I'll ever be," I answered.
"Have you heard from Ernesto?" Alex asked me. "I did. He called me yesterday from Guatemala," I answered. "How is he?" Alex asked, her professional voice hinting of concern. "He's in good health. Happy to be with his parents... and healing," I answered somberly. We both knew that he would never heal completely. How could you after someone you trusted hurt you so much? I had to close my eyes for a moment and take a deep breath. The memory of my conversation with Ernesto and the image of his terror-filled eyes invaded my senses again, and I had to stop myself from crying. Doesn't matter how justice befalls on the men that did this to him and to others, it won't be enough.
"Anything else?" I asked, wanting to escape the suddenly confining space of Alex's office. I stood up before I saw her nod slightly. "Actually, yes. Sit down, Liv," Alex said, her voice changing slightly from that professional tone she loved to use to one more suitable for a conversation in a bar. I was surprised that she had used my nickname, but I didn't give it much thought.
"What is it?" I asked her as I sat back down. Alex wasn't meeting my eyes, which was unusual for her. She was looking down at the floor as if something really interesting was happening on her shoes. I was starting to worry, but only after she spoke did I realize I should have worried long before.
"It really bothered you to see me with Craig, didn't it?" Alex said, finally looking up straight at me. I took a deep breath and answered, "Alexandra, what you date or don't date is none of my business."
"I didn't ask that. I asked if it had bothered you," Alex said softly. Now I really wanted to get out of there. "What's your point?" I answered in a very lame attempt at ignoring the question. "My point is I want to know," Alex answered coolly. As I stared into those alluring blue eyes, I knew I had to tell her the truth.
"It did. A lot," I finally answered. Alex nodded, and after a few seconds of very uncomfortable silence, she asked, "Is that why you have been given me the cold shoulder for the last week?" I had given her the cold shoulder? Well. maybe. I wasn't sure. I do remember Elliot going by himself to Alex, but I had been too busy to go with him.
The truth was that being busy had never stopped me before.
"I don't know," I answered truthfully. Alex nodded again, as if expecting that answer. "Tell me the truth, Olivia. What was the first thing that popped into your mind when you saw Craig there?" Alex asked me. I wasn't very tempted at that moment to lie to her. After all, what I had thought could have been misconstrued as something that wasn't. Or was it?
"Honestly?" I asked. Alex nodded one more time. What the hell. the truth and nothing but the truth so help me God. "I thought you and Craig had been trading bedroom gossip about our cases and that you had pretty much stabbed our back at SVU," I blurted. I had never believed I had a big mouth. until that moment that is.
Alex lowered her head, but not before I caught sight of her hurt expression. Dammit, Olivia! I tried to fix with my next breath, "Look, Alex. I'm sorry. I know it was wrong for me to think so. I always think the worst first. which somehow works well for SVU but not for my personal life." Alex raised her head and waited for me to continue.
"I think you are a wonderful ADA and I have plenty of faith in your professionalism. Even with your relationship to the sleaze bag," I said, my mouth outrunning my head. I took a deep breath and finished, "I mean, even with your relationship with Mr. Lambert, I believe you are more than capable of dividing your professional life from your personal one."
"Is that an apology?" Alex asked. I guess it was. "I guess it is. I shouldn' t have thought that about you," I answered. "I want to assure you that I am as dedicated to these cases as you and everyone else at SVU is. I would never let anything or anyone jeopardize that," Alex answered.
"I know," I answered. I did know. and yet, why had I gotten so angry when I saw Craig come in? Alex smiled lightly and got off from the desk, walking around it as she started to gather her things. "Well, remember to be in court tomorrow at 8:30. We don't have Ernesto and the next best thing is. well, you." Alex said.
"Got it. See you tomorrow," I said as I stood up. I thought for a second about inviting her for a drink or for dinner. You know? As I way of apologizing to her. yeah, right.
"By the way, Olivia," she said as she locked her briefcase and walked to her coat hanger. "You can feel at ease about Craig. I have never traded bedroom secrets with him," she finished.
She slipped her suede coat over her slender shoulders and straightened her dress. "Craig and I went to law school together," Alex offered, "He's not bad as a person, and he's a hell of a good lawyer. He also happens to be gay."
"So you can be assured that I haven't traded professional secrets with Craig either in or out of the bedroom," Alex finished. I wondered what that sense of relief inside of me was coming from. my heart or my head.
"Come on. That little red dress just to dine out with an old pal," I said as I stood up, following her lead out of her office. We were the last ones there. who knows? Maybe in the whole building.
"A girl needs to dress up once in a while! Specially with all that waiting I 've had to do," Alex said as I caught up with her, making our way to the elevator. "Waiting? What do you mean?" I asked as I pressed the button. "Waiting for a certain someone at SVU to ask me out," Alex blurted.
I have to admit that everything just froze for a moment, Matrix-style. Although instead of having a cool-looking chick dress in leather suddenly hover in front of us and kicking our asses, I was assaulted by a hundred different thoughts at the same time. Talk about mental overload.
I went with the most obvious answer. taking her word literarily.
She was waiting for someone at SVU to ask her out? Who could it be? The roster was already flipping in my head when the elevator doors opened and she stepped inside. "You coming?" Alex asked. "Uh. yeah," I blurted as I took a step and stood next to her, managing once again to act like a bumbling idiot in front of her.
"Who is it?" I asked, not caring if it breached our professional-friendship agreement. "You said it yourself, Detective. My love life is none of your business," Alex replied. Ouch. Thought it had been a low blow until I saw the smile on her face. There was no mistake. she was teasing.
"Who is it? Elliot?" I asked her as the elevator doors opened. After all, who wouldn't be into him? Even I had a crush on him at the beginning. "As much as I love how he fills his pants, Det. Stabler is not my type," Alex answered, her smile growing slightly larger. We must have looked like two lovesick teenagers sharing "hot-guy" gossip as we walked out the building.
"Odafin?" I asked her. I had always found Fin to be very handsome in an exotic way. "No. It isn't Det. Tutuola," Alex answered. By now we were walking down the front steps of the building in an unusually cold afternoon. I closed my jacket more tightly around my body and couldn't stop from asking, "Munch?" Munch was definitely not what I called handsome. but hey, everyone has different tastes. Right?
"You are wasting your breath, Liv. You aren't guessing," Alex said with a smile as she stood on the sidewalk and hailed a cab. Boy, I had gotten this far and I wasn't about to be deterred. "Cragen?" I asked, a slight "ewww" tone crawling into my voice. True, Cragen had a heart of gold. hidden under the face of a muppet.
A cab stopped just in front of us and I opened the door for Alex. "Huang?" I asked her, giving it one last, desperate shot. Before entering the cab, she turned around to face me with the most amused smile on her face. She was standing very close to me, with only the cab's door between us, and from this close I could see that her amusement spread all the way to her eyes. She was obviously having a good time at my expense.
"No, Olivia. It is not Elliot, or Huang, or Munch, or Fin. and God knows it isn't Cragen. And if you haven't figured it out by now, then I have to question your skills as a Detective," Alex said. Her smile grew slightly wider as she winked at me and hopped inside the cab, leaving me more than a little confused as I held the door.
Not Elliot. or Fin. or Munch. or Cragen. or Huang. That only left.
I whispered, daring to even consider the possibility that she was talking about me. If it was, why hadn't she said anything? True, I hadn't said anything either, but. What am I thinking? Of course, she's not talking about me. Hell, Ernie the janitor has more probability of dating Alex than I do. But what if she was? The possibilities that came with her statement popped into my head like too much cheap champagne.
"Hey, lady, you coming?" the cab driver rudely interrupted my musings. I bend down slightly to have a better look at Alex. She was grinning by now, her head tilted to the side in an expression of mocked innocent. Was I reading the signals wrong?
Screw it. I had nothing to lose.
"Depends. Do you want to go out with me Friday night?" I finally asked her. I had thought about asking for months and I had never realized how easy it would be until now. "On a date?" she asked me, her smile still decorating her face.
"Yes. On a date," I said, giving her my best lopsided smile in an attempt to make light of the situation. Alex seemed to think about it for a couple of seconds, even going as far as placing the tip of her finger on her chin and tapping it lightly. It was so cute, I think I loved her a bit more that second.
"Get in, Detective Benson," she said as she moved on the seat. I hopped inside, ignoring the cab driver's stares. He had never seen a woman asking another woman out? And I thought this was New York.
I looked straight at Alex as the car started driving away. She still hadn't answered me, but that didn't make me feel uneasy. I did feel slightly nervous when her smile faded and she looked straight into my eyes. This is it. She's going to tell me thanks, but no thanks, and my little crush on ADA Alex Cabot would come crashing down.
Instead, a tingle ran up my leg and up my spine as Alex placed her hand on my knee and said, "Do you really want to go out with me?"
There was only one way to answer that.
"Hell yeah," I whispered, deliciously tortured by how close she was sitting next to me. Alex smiled then and said the words I had never expected to hear.
"It was about time. I've waiting long enough!"
We both had a good laugh, and we just talked for the rest of the drive. I didn't know what I was doing then. I was just following my heart. So was Alex. It was the beginning though of something that's too big for words to describe, a love that survived tribulation after tribulation just to surface triumphant above everything else. But that's another story for another time.
The cab stopped in front of her building, and it was time to say goodbye. "Hey, Alex, can you do me a favor?" I asked her, my voice sounding awfully serious for the occasion. "What is it?" she asked me, a bit alarmed by my changed in mood.
"Can you wear the red dress for our date?" I smiled. Alex grinned at me, leaned in, and whispered against my ear. "If you are a very good girl, I even might NOT wear it afterwards." She then winked at me, opened the door, and stepped outside.
I laughed, both relieved and nervous at this unexpected turn of events.
Who would have thought?
Friday night came. and that little red silk dress spent the night thrown over a chair.
At my place.
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