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The blonde watched from across the room as the brunette detective was ushered into the restaurant by a tall dark haired man. Her eyes went to the man, studying him. His well cut suit hinted at broad shoulders and a toned body underneath. His hair was cut short and he wore small round wire-rimmed glasses. His face had an aristocratic bearing much like most of the Alex's acquaintances when she was growing up. He followed the hostess toward an empty table, his hand at the small of the detective's back, guiding her.
Her eyes slid over the woman, not needing nearly as sharp an eye to observe her. The blonde knew her features by heart, having studied them when the detective was not aware in court, during a discussion with the squad about a case, over lunch out of Chinese food cartons sitting in the squad room. Still she allowed herself the indulgence once again. Her blue eyes grazed over the body well displayed in the little black dress much like one that hung in Alex's own closet. Then the detective was sitting down, and Alex's eyes moved upward to short brown hair, shot through with lighter shades striking features and warm brown eyes that were now staring right at her. Alex smiled as she watched recognition dawn in the other woman's eyes. She returned the slight nod the brunette offered in acknowledgement. As her waiter approached from her left, Alex turned her attention away from the woman.
She'd settled into the chair that her date held out for her, and as she looked up she caught sight of a familiar blonde across the room. Her heart skipped a beat as she found the blonde watching her. The intensity of the blue eyes that burned into her from across the room surprised Olivia. When Alex turned away to talk to the approaching waiter, Olivia turned her attention back to her date. She hadn't been enthusiastic when her friend offered to fix her up, but he was attractive in an "old money" sort of way. She found herself thinking he probably would have looked more at home standing next to Alex. She did not examine the burning jealousy in her stomach at that thought, nor the fact that she was not jealous of Alex, but of the man who would have the privilege of standing next to her.
Lord, he was talking about something, and she wasn't listening. Olivia wrenched her mind back to the present and tried to concentrate on his words, struggling to remember what it was that he did for a living. Something corporate, wasn't it?
She was managing to hold up her end of the conversation, when suddenly the topic turned to current events and he was discussing a news story he had just seen. He had not been interested enough in Olivia to ask the pertinent questions that might have warned him that he was about to venture into dangerous territory. He was unaware as he voiced his opinion about the incident that happened to be a case that Olivia was set to testify about the next day. Her mind drifted again to the blonde across the room that had paced the courtroom that very day, immersed in the case he was discussing. She could barely believe her ears when he sided with the man who had committed such an atrocious crime.
She tried to keep her eyes from straying back to the table where the man and the detective sat. But since her own dinner companion had cancelled at the last minute, she found little to occupy her attention as she waited for her dinner. In truth, she had debated leaving when she found out she was set to dine alone. However, she'd already been seated and ordered a drink, so she decided to stay.
She watched Olivia's face, seeing the slightly bored look turn to one of surprise. When Olivia's eyes narrowed dangerously, Alex wondered what the man had said. It soon became obvious that Olivia was struggling to remain silent while the man across from her talked, gesturing broadly with his hands as he spoke.
Her waiter returned, setting another drink in front of her. Alex picked up the drink and took a sip, letting the rich flavor of alcohol slide over her tongue. She lifted her eyes once again to the table across the room. The couple was arguing now the kind of quietly controlled arguing that people do in a public place when they do not want to cause a scene. However, having become very aware of Olivia's body language in recent months Alex could hardly believe that Olivia had been able to keep herself from coming out of her chair. Her face was a tight mask of anger and her hands balled into fists.
The man did not seem to be as much in control of himself, his face turning red and his hand gestures becoming more elaborate. Finally, he stood, throwing the napkin that formerly rested in his lap onto the table. He turned and strode towards the door. Alex watched him walk away. When her eyes returned to Olivia she was surprised to find a self-satisfied smirk on her face. She was even more surprised to find those brown eyes looking directly at her.
She watched him go, feeling relief. It had become clear very early in the conversation about the case that they did not see eye to eye. However, several of his comments inflamed Olivia's temper and she had been unable to hold back a few biting comments. Apparently his views about women were as old-fashioned as his views about the law, because he did not take well to having his date voice an opinion that was contradictory to his. As he walked away, she found herself grinning. Her eyes left his retreating back and landed on Alex. The blue eyes were on her once again.
The waitress hurried over, having witnessed the scene. Olivia rose and spoke to her quickly, pressing several bills into the woman's hand to cover the dinner that neither of them would eat now. That settled she stepped away from the table. Instead of heading for the door, she crossed to stand by Alex's table.
"Counselor, how are you?" she asked smoothly, the temper that had seethed within her was no longer evident.
"It appears I should be asking you that, Detective," Alex tilted her head back to meet Olivia's eyes.
"Better now, thank you. Are you dining alone?"
"Yes. I was meeting Liz to go over some things for tomorrow, but Branch needed her at the last minute. So I'm going to meet her early in the morning. Would you like to join me?"
Olivia nodded and slid into the chair across from the blonde. Their eyes met across the table and Olivia began to recount the conversation she'd just had with her date.
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