DISCLAIMER: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and its characters are the property of NBC and Dick Wolf.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: This is the third part of the story arc that started with Déjà vu, followed by The Cabot Cabin. To understand this one, I strongly recommend reading those two.
THANKS: To all of you for reading this ongoing series and supporting it the way you have, I really appreciate it. To the faithful followers on my Yahoo Group, vivalab – you guys rock!
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Trial & Retribution
By VivalaB


Chapter 1: Reality Check

"Please hold still Miss Benson"

Olivia sighed, allowing the intrusive hands to examine her bare flesh. She moved her eyes from the eggshell ceiling to the blonde sitting quietly in a nearby chair holding her discarded clothing. She focused on the bowed head until blue eyes lifted and met her own.

Alex Cabot smiled in sympathy at her girlfriend lying on top of a bed in St Vincent's Hospital as a doctor and a nurse scrutinized her healing wounds.

"No inflammation, no swelling, no nausea, no breathing difficulties?" the white haired man asked.

Olivia turned her head back towards him, "Nope, it was a medium caliber bullet, clean entry and exit and it's been looked at by two EMT's, a veterinarian and…a lawyer," she informed him, smiling as she said the last part.

Doctor Wilson nodded his head, "Your skin's bonded nicely across both areas, I see no indication of infection…shouldn't leave much more than a thin white line, barely an inch long, on either wound," he said, touching the lightly bruised area gently.

"What about her head?" Alex asked, referring to the contusion Olivia had received during her stand off with rogue Tactical Agent, David Brennan, which had resulted in her current injuries.

The dark haired nurse smiled over at her, "Just waiting on Radiology with the results, Miss Cabot," she supplied in a friendly tone.

Alex had been nervous at first when the doctor had called for the CT scan. She had watched helplessly as Olivia was given a contrast injection and connected to an IV. Olivia had been feeling groggy when they first arrived at the cabin, but hadn't given any indication that her head was still fuzzy, Alex's mind was busy absorbing everything being said and done.

"Alex, I told you, my head feels fine," Olivia said, smiling over at her in reassurance.

Doctor Wilson finished his careful examination and stepped back, "You can get dressed now, I'll be back shortly with your CT results," he said, placing a comforting hand on her shoulder.

The doctor and nurse left the room, closing the door behind them, leaving the two women alone.

Alex moved from her seated position to stand at the side of the bed and pushed dark hair away from Olivia's eyes. She looked down at the faint, red mark on her arm, where the IV had bee inserted and smiled lovingly into deep, brown eyes.

Olivia returned the look, savoring the feeling of Alex's warm fingers caressing her cool forehead. She smiled at her, "Only you could have an Uncle on the hospital board," she admonished playfully.

Alex grinned, "Don't underestimate the reach of the Cabot's Benson…when we want something, we always get it," she said in a conspiratorial tone, referring to the private room and instant medical attention they had received.

"Don't I know it," she replied, waggling her brows suggestively before adding, "It's a good job I passed on that second cup of coffee at the diner or we'd still be waiting for them to stick me with that needle," she groused.

Alex kissed her lightly, "It's done now, c'mon…get dressed," she encouraged, watching as Olivia shifted her position and swung her legs over the side, accepting the offered clothing.

The cab ride was quiet as tiredness enveloped both women. Olivia's CT scan had been clear, no residual trace of any damage to her head. They had left the hospital intent on a quick stop at Olivia's apartment to collect some clothes and her cellphone charger, before heading to Alex's apartment.

It was almost 7pm as the taxi pulled to a stop in front of Olivia's building. As they reached Olivia's door, the brunette hesitated.

"What?" Alex asked, leaning tiredly against the body in front.

Olivia swallowed nervously, "This is the first time you'll be here, as my…" she faltered, trying to find the right word.

"Girlfriend?" Alex offered.

"Girlfriend," Olivia confirmed, turning and giving her a cocky smile.

Alex leaned forward and kissed her. Lips parted in a familiar dance allowing their tongues to tango together a few times before reluctantly parting.

"Open the door Liv," Alex breathed out, looking anxiously around the empty hallway, her hands itching to touch the body before her.

"In a hurry Counselor?" Olivia teased.

Alex leaned into her, "I have a very pressing need to be private with you," she whispered hotly.

Olivia kissed her again and fumbled with the keys as Alex pressed seductively into her from behind. They stumbled through the door, Olivia barely managing to kick it closed before she was pushed roughly against it by the eager blonde. Hands clutched and pulled at clothing, desperate to touch bare skin as mouths fused together on a surge of passion.

A low whistle of appreciation sounded from the sofa, "I woulda thought after a week in the wilderness y'all would've run out of steam."

Alex and Olivia froze at the familiar drawl. They halted all movement and gazed at each other briefly with regret before meeting the twinkling dark eyes of Abbie Carmichael.

"Do I even want to know how you got in here?" Olivia asked, fixing her clothing. She reached for Alex's hand and moved towards the dark haired Federal attorney.

Abbie laughed, "In the interests of national security, it's best I keep that one under my hat," she said, tipping an imaginary hat in their direction.

Olivia shook her head and blew out a breath of frustration.

"Losing your touch Liv…could see you had your hands full… but didn't you notice the lights on?" Abbie teased as she sat in the chair beside the sofa.

Olivia and Alex sank heavily into the sofa and glared at their unwanted visitor.

"Save the daggers for Porter, I thought we could have dinner and get the elephants out the room before tomorrow," she said brightly.

Alex frowned, "What elephants?" she asked, speaking to Abbie for the first time.

Abbie lifted a hand to her chest, "She speaks too?" she mocked, shaking her head in wonder.

Alex instantly opened her mouth to reply but Abbie waved her off, "Relax Cabot, I'm just yanking your chain…I see you've improved your technique over the years…feisty suits you," she husked throatily in a teasing tone.

Alex gave the hand she was holding a gentle squeeze, "It wasn't the technique that needed improving…but the company," she retorted.

"Ouch…one elephant down…one to go…" Abbie replied, arching an eyebrow.

Olivia kissed Alex on the cheek before looking at Abbie, "Are we going to do this all night?" she asked flatly.

Abbie shrugged, "You tell me, we've not even touched on the fact that you and I used to share a bed," she said smiling sweetly, exposing white teeth and dimples.

Olivia released her hold on Alex's hand and moved it along the back of the sofa, draping it protectively around Alex's shoulders. Alex leaned forward slightly, allowing Olivia to hold her.

"If your intention is to make me jealous of the fact that you and Liv were together albeit, briefly…" Alex paused, allowing the implication to sink in before continuing, "Over ten years ago…then you're sadly mistaken Abbie," she finished, maintaining eye contact with the dark haired woman.

Olivia subconsciously held her breath, waiting for Abbie's reaction.

Abbie burst out laughing and shook her head, "Oh Cabot relax…see, doesn't everybody feel better now we've got the elephants out the room?"

Two pairs of eyes looked incredulously at her.

"Look, I think it's great you're finally together, God knows everybody always said you would, but let's face it…I made out with you," she said nodding at Alex, "And I had a thing with you," she said nodding at Olivia. She smiled a them both, "I love you both, I didn't want it to change anything between us, okay?" she said honestly, showing the dimples once more.

"How did you even know we were back in the city?" Alex asked.

"I tracked down your flight log…private landing pad on 450 West 33rd Street, near the Lincoln Tunnel, nice touch Alex," she acquiesced.

Alex tilted her head in acknowledgement.

Abbie continued, "You landed almost three hours ago, where d'you go? At first I thought you might've gone straight to Alex's apartment…that is where you're heading isn't it?" she asked smugly.

Olivia nodded, "We stopped off at St Vincent's then swung by here to pick up a few things," she clarified.

"St Vincent's?"

Alex placed a hand on Olivia's leg and stroked it tenderly, "The bullet wound and concussion, I wanted to make sure she was okay," she said quietly.

Abbie looked at Olivia, "Are you?" she asked, concern evident in her tone.

Olivia nodded, enjoying the soothing touch.

"You shoulda said, I woulda turned down my, jealous ex routine, a notch," she said sincerely.

Alex smiled at her, "Please…you can't turn anything down a notch," she said, rolling her eyes.

"I'm learning to, it's the new mature me…" she replied with mock hurt as both faces looked at her in disbelief.

"What about Porter's trial, what's the latest news since your phonecall," Olivia asked, eager to move this conversation along and be alone with Alex.

Abbie settled back into the chair and filled them in on the latest developments. She outlined her trial prep, witness list, how Porter was still defending himself and that he had no-one on his witness list.

Alex shook her head, "What is he doing? He's not even opting for a psyche defense?" she asked.

Abbie shrugged, "Nope. We've got enough evidence to put him away in Federal lock up without a trial. He won't accept any deal and my boss, wants to use him as an example to anyone else planning on abusing their position of authority," she confirmed.

"He wants his day in court," Olivia said absently.

Alex felt the arm around her tighten slightly and draw her in closer, "Hey, he doesn't have a leg to stand on…you know that," she said softly, nudging the body beside her.

Abbie rubbed her hands across her denim clad thighs, "Maybe that's what he wants," she said.

"What?" Alex asked.

Abbie motioned between the two of them, "Are you planning on being open about your relationship?" she asked delicately.

Both heads nodded.

"Well, maybe he wants to ruin you both by outing your relationship on the stand…are you ready for that?" she asked tentatively.

Both heads nodded again.

Alex rested her hand firmly on Olivia's thigh, "We've talked about this Abbie, I'll speak to McCoy," she said confidently.

"And I'll speak to Cragen," Olivia said, looking at Alex, "The irony is, we weren't even in a relationship when this all started, Porter brought us together," she said, shaking her head.

Alex turned and smiled at her, "I won't deny how I feel about you Liv, under oath or not," she said with conviction.

Abbie bit the inside of her cheek, reluctant to interrupt and waited a few seconds, "You know this could have career ramifications for you both…it's a closed trial and the press will only be informed of the verdict, but you know how these high profile cases go. Opposition loves to get their teeth into something and use it in their political agenda. Porter probably wants to publicly out you both and damage not only your careers, but your reputations too…" she paused, not wanting to say the next words, "One or both of you may be reassigned, you can't continue working together if you're involved in a personal relationship," she finished quietly.

Olivia spoke first and looked over at Abbie, "We know Abbie, there's not much we can do about that until we know what options we have, if any. It's taken me long enough to tell Alex that I love her, I've already told her I would give up my badge for her…and I will, if it comes to that," she said sternly.

"We talked about this Liv, let's not do anything rash…maybe I should go with you when you talk to Cragen," she offered, searching the dark eyes.

Olivia smiled and softened her tone, "No, I won't do anything rash but I won't have anyone thinking they can use my feelings for you, against you," she stated quietly.

Abbie cleared her throat, "Let's not jump the gun, that's our worst case scenario…McCoy would be an idiot to lose his best prosecutor and Cragen treats you as if you were his own Liv. Bottom line, we're not gonna know what Porter wants until we get into that court room," she said, bobbing her head.

Alex nodded in agreement, "It's a week away, we've got plenty of time to test the political waters," she said optimistically.

Olivia gave her shoulder a comforting squeeze, "Exactly," she agreed, smiling at her.

Abbie looked at them both, "Now, d'you want me to leave you alone, or d'you wanna order in and tell me all about the mountains…and by all, I mean the monkey sex…just for comparable purposes of course," she said grinning.


Chapter 2: Gathering Storm

Alex watched Olivia clear the dishes from the table and move towards the kitchen area. The Tex Mex takeout Abbie had insisted on ordering, was surprisingly good and despite her earlier tiredness, she felt wide awake. She watched Olivia move diligently around the small area and smiled, she rose from the sofa and walked towards the stools at the breakfast bar.

"Would you rather we stayed here tonight?" Alex asked, shifting as she settled on the stool.

Olivia turned her head in surprise, she hadn't expected Alex to be so close, "Would you?" she replied smiling.

Alex leaned forward and propped her head on her fists and smiled at Olivia, "I don't care where we sleep as long as we're together…and naked," she said, waggling her eyebrows.

Olivia smiled reflexively, "You have a one track mind sweetheart…" she said, moving away from the sink and leaning across the counter, "…lucky for you, I'm on the same one," she said grinning. She stretched across the short distance, smiling as Alex lowered her hands and met her halfway. Olivia placed several closed mouth kisses on the soft lips until a frustrated blonde curled a hand around her neck and pulled her closer.

Alex licked the closed lips with the tip of her insistent tongue and smiled inwardly as they parted in response. She ran her tongue seductively around the inside of Olivia's mouth and sucked her tongue deeply into her own mouth. Olivia moaned as she felt her chest expand and gave herself over to the talented mouth and strained forward.

The counter was rapidly becoming an unwelcome barrier. Olivia pulled back panting and swiped her tongue along her bottom lip, tasting Alex. She looked across the counter into glittering blue eyes and smiled, "Let's go to bed," she said, moving around the counter.

Alex swiveled in the stool and gazed lustfully at the approaching brunette, "I was thinking more along the lines of the counter top…or this chair, it seem sturdy enough and you could use the height advantage," she teased, smiling at her lover.

Olivia placed her hands on slender thighs, pushing them apart. She stepped into the space and leaned down, kissing Alex savagely. She moved her hands underneath the sweater and stroked warm flesh purposefully. She felt Alex's breathing hitch and released her mouth, she looked into glazed eyes and arched a well defined eyebrow, "As much as I'd love to take you here…or there," she said, indicating the counter with a tilt of her head, "I'd rather have you beneath me so that I can rub my swollen clit across yours and let you feel how hard you make me," she purred, removing her hands.

Alex felt her sex squeeze at the words, she swallowed and pushed Olivia backwards so that she could stand, "And just how hard do I make you?" she asked, cupping Olivia's sex through her jeans and smiling wickedly at the heat radiating through the heavy denim.

Olivia pushed into her hand, "Would you rather stay out here and tease me…or let me show you?" she breathed out, gently gyrating her hips.

Alex licked her lips and stepped closer, "I'd rather taste you," she whispered hotly.

"You really know how to kill the mood Liv," Alex said, watching Olivia changing the bed sheets.

Olivia smiled over at her, "I haven't been here for over a week, I want our first time in this bed to be a clean experience," she reasoned as hands urgently tugged at the fabric.

Alex snorted, "Have we had a 'clean experience' that I'm not aware of?" she asked, dodging the pillow that flew through the air towards her.

Olivia shook her head, "Put a fresh case on that will you," she asked, pointing to a pile on the nearby chair.

Alex smiled and lifted a clean case and slid it over the pillow, "Anything else?" she asked, resting against the chest of drawers.

Olivia looked up and smiled, "Nope, almost done," she answered, breathing raggedly.

Alex removed her sweater and placed it over the chair, then removed her bra and unfastened her jeans. She watched her oblivious girlfriend as she smoothed the bed out and shook her head. She gently kicked off her sneakers and lowered her jeans, opting to remove her underwear at the same time. She felt the chill in the air caress her body and smiled as she looked down at her hardening nipples.


"Just one more sec," Olivia panted, stretching across the bed and arranging the pillows.


Olivia looked up and caught Alex's naked reflection in the mirror on her dresser, her mouth dropped open, "Holy fuck," she gulped, "You really are an exhibitionist," she whispered, turning to face the not-so-patiently waiting blonde.

Alex smiled, moving her hands across taut breasts, "You know how impatient I can be," she husked out.

Olivia bit her bottom lip and moved off the bed, "I'm just gonna brush my teeth," she said, eyes transfixed on the vision before her.

"No you're not," Alex shook her head, "If you aren't naked by the time I count to five…" she paused, watching in amusement as Olivia began tearing at her clothes.


Olivia laughed out loud as she struggled out of her jeans.

Alex moved towards her and pushed her backwards onto the freshly changed bed, smiling as Olivia moved further into the middle. She lifted her legs and pulled at the material, dropping denim and silk underwear on to the floor. Olivia hooked her legs around Alex and brought her closer. Alex grinned down at the beautiful brunette and leaned forward, smoothing her hands along the tanned, toned flesh as she came to rest fully on top of her lover.

Olivia parted her legs and pushed upwards, "I wanted you underneath me, remember?" she teased, running her hands down Alex's back to cup firm mounds of flesh.

Alex kissed the base of her throat wetly before answering, "I can still feel how hard you are," she said, pressing her wet sex into Olivia.

Olivia rotated her hips in response and groaned as Alex raised her body. Alex smiled down at her as she moved her body backwards, trailing her breasts and stiff peaks along the tanned flesh. Alex shifted her body and dragged a hardened nipple along the thin strip of dark hair before pushing into the damp sex.

Olivia's muscles tightened as she felt the stiff nipple rub against her swollen bundle of nerves, she felt her sex clenching and desperately tried to push into the firm breast.

Alex looked at the stomach muscles tightening underneath the surface and moved her eyes to brown orbs, widened in rapt fascination, "You're right…you are hard," she breathed out slowly, pushing into her once more.

Street light trickled through the open curtains causing Olivia to smile at the contrast between the city and the mountains. She stroked the warm back she was holding tenderly, enjoying the soothing motion.

Alex's eyes were closed but she wasn't asleep, she was reveling in the feeling of being held by the woman she loved. She inhaled deeply and buried her head contentedly into the shoulder she was lying on.

"I love you," Olivia whispered.

Alex smiled and kissed the soft skin, "I know," she mumbled.

Olivia chuckled, "You're supposed to say you love me too," she chided lightly.

Alex kissed the skin again, allowing her tongue to peek out and taste the salty flesh, "I believe I showed you…four times no less," she answered smiling.

"It was three…multiples don't count," Olivia answered chuckling.

Alex lifted her head and looked into the relaxed face, " I love you," she whispered seriously.

Olivia swallowed and smiled at the blue orbs in the darkened room, "We'll get through all this," she said quietly.

Alex shifted slightly and kissed her chin, "Yes we will," she stated firmly.

Olivia searched the face she had come to know so well and saw the belief written all over it, "I'm going to call Cragen in the morning, ask him to meet me," she said.

Alex smiled, "I know you want to talk to him alone, but if you change your mind, just call me," she whispered, waiting for Olivia to nod in agreement.

Olivia moved a hand and ran her fingers through the damp, silky strands, "Are you going to speak to McCoy tomorrow?" she asked, watching blue eyes close in response.

"Actually I'm going to ask someone's advice first, before I approach him," she said, enjoying the tingling sensation on her scalp.

Olivia frowned and tilted her head, "Who?" she asked.

Alex opened her eyes and smiled, "Someone who isn't afraid of the 'old boys network'," she said, kissing the parted lips.


Chapter 3: Out

Olivia sat in a quiet corner booth of the coffee shop across the street from the 16th precinct. Her eyes flicked nervously between the clock on the wall and the front entrance. She and Alex had woken around 5am and decided to attack the day head on, after an unhurried shared shower. Olivia smiled at the memories of the two of them in the confined space and their inventive use of the shower screen.


Olivia snapped her head up and looked into the smiling face of her boss, "Captain," she said in greeting, cursing herself for being so easily distracted.

Captain Donald Cragen removed his rain coat and lowered himself into the seat opposite, "You're looking rested Liv, how's your side?" he asked with genuine concern.

Olivia nodded as she spoke, "Much better thanks, got it checked yesterday," she said, motioning for the waitress she had dismissed earlier to come over. She smiled at Cragen, "Coffee?" she asked.

"If you're buying," he said smiling.

Olivia waited until the waitress had moved away before she spoke again, "Thanks for meeting me Sir," she said calmly.

Cragen frowned, "Sir? When you called and said you needed to see me Liv, you didn't sound so…formal," he replied, concern lacing his tone.

"Yeah, I don't exactly know what it is…" she said, trailing off as their waitress returned and deposited their drinks on the table. She smiled her appreciation at the young woman and nervously began heaping sugar into the steaming cup of tea.

Cragen reached for his black coffee, "Ease up on the sugar Liv, it's only seven thirty," he warned, concern gracing his features. He looked at her, "Is this about Alex?" he asked tentatively.

Olivia's eyes widened as she stirred the sweet tea, "It's about me and Alex," she said, meeting his eyes.

Cragen looked at her, "You did a helluva job keeping you both alive, Goldie badgered me for a transfer for you…" he said proudly before hearing his own words and reading the expression on the face across from him. "Is that what you wanted to talk to me about…a transfer?" he asked.

Olivia took a long sip of tea, "No..well…maybe after I tell you what I have to tell you, but it's not about Goldie," she answered. She settled the cup in front of her and swallowed, "Alex and I are together," she stated.

Donald Cragen looked at her for a long moment.

Olivia felt nervous under his scrutinizing gaze and searched his face for any hint of a reaction. As the seconds ticked by she frowned at his silence, "Cap'n?" she prompted.

"Is that it? Is that what you wanted to talk to me about?" he asked in a neutral tone.

Olivia nodded, feeling her palms begin to sweat and her heart beating faster.

Alex blew out a steadying breath as she raised her hand to knock on the ominously closed door.


Alex squared her shoulders and opened the door, "Morning Liz," she said brightly as she closed the door behind her and approached the Judge's desk.

Liz Donnelly rose from her seat and met Alex halfway across the large, opulent office, "Alex, how are you?" she asked, surprising her with a heartfelt hug.

"I'm good thanks, spent some time out of the city," she answered vaguely, as Liz guided them towards the leather sofa nestled in the corner.

Liz sat down next to her and turned to face her, "I was surprised to get your call this morning, it's been a while since we've talked," she said tilting her head and studying the younger blonde.

Alex sighed, "I know, I'm sorry," she answered, giving her former boss a smile.

"I miss our breakfast meetings, we should start them again," Liz stated.

Alex smiled, "You're a Judge now, it's a little different," she said.

"Nonsense, do I show you any leniency in my courtroom?" she asked, holding her gaze.

Alex shook her head, "Never."

Liz smiled, "Well then, nothing's different…except I get a better table whenever I go out," she drolled.

Alex smiled, "You've always gotten a better table," she snorted.

Liz shrugged her shoulders, "True, but now nobody dares answer back," she said smiling. She looked at Alex and admired her fresh appearance with minimal make up and casual attire. Despite the denims and leather jacket Alexandra Cabot still oozed good breeding. Her eyes widened in sudden recognition.

Alex cleared her throat gently, "I need your advice Liz, I need to speak to Jack and I'm not sure what my approach should be," she said, looking into the older woman's face.

Liz nodded, " I see, in regards to what?" she asked directly.

"A personal matter," Alex replied coolly.

"Clearly, or you wouldn't be seeking my advice at this ungodly hour," she retorted, then softened her tone, "Does this have anything to do with a certain SVU detective?" she asked tentatively.

Alex schooled all her years of courtroom experience into a hopefully, neutral expression, "What makes you ask that?" she asked calmly.

Liz stroked the leather clad sleeve, "I believe this belongs to Detective Benson and forgive me if I'm wrong but your, 'time out of the city' was not spent alone, was it?"

Alex shook her head, "No it wasn't and yes, this is Olivia's jacket," she replied, smiling as she thought of the borrowed underwear she was also wearing.

Liz looked at her expectantly and arched her eyebrows in question.

"Olivia and I are…together," she said slowly, watching closely for a reaction.

Olivia glanced at her cooling tea and wondered what Cragen was thinking, she braced herself for the worst. She wondered briefly how Alex was getting on with Liz and wished she was with her now.

"Liv…" Cragen began but stopped as the waitress appeared and asked if they wanted a refill, at the shake of both heads she smiled and left.

"Cap'n, I know this is a bit of a shock and I know it's a conflict of interests, but we're together and nothing is going to change that," Olivia said in a determined tone.

Cragen looked at her, "I've know you for over eleven years Liv…" he paused, smiling at her, "I think I've known how you feel about Alex Cabot for the past six," he said quietly, looking into her startled brown eyes. "Are you telling me you're only now getting together?" he asked in surprise as realization sunk in.

Olivia stared at him in shock, "You knew?...You thought we were already together?"

Cragen shook his head, "Kinda hard to miss the tension underneath all that arguing," he replied, smiling at her. He nodded his head, "You took her 'death' harder than anyone and I was worried when you withdrew into yourself…when she came back, so did the tension," he said, smiling again. "So, you've finally done something about it?" he asked, watching a faint blush creep up her neck.

Olivia dropped her eyes and nodded, "Life and death situations sorta bring out the fearlessness in me," she said quietly.

Cragen reached over and lifted her chin, "I'm happy for you Liv, happy for you both," he said with genuine affection, making sure she understood what he was saying.

She smiled and blinked a few times, "What about my job?" she asked.

"What about it?" he replied, removing his hand.

"Do I need to request a transfer?"

Cragen frowned, "Do you want to leave SVU?" he asked.

She shook her head, "No," she answered immediately.


"We think Porter might out us on the stand," she said quietly.

Cragen nodded, "Abbie's gone over all the testimony and done a thorough background on Porter…she'll destroy him Liv, you know she will…she lives for this sort of, high octane drama, brings out the cowboy in her," he said shaking his head.

Olivia smiled, "Thanks Cap'n."

Cragen looked at her, "Liv…I've seen how this job affects you, more than anyone and I'm happy you've finally got someone outside the squad room, " he said frowning, "You know what I mean," he smiled, shaking his head.

Olivia sighed, "What about the Brass? What about court?" she asked.

"No offence Liv but I thought you were already together and nobody has come to me and commented on it…let's just play it by ear," he said, looking at her doubting expression, "What I'm trying to say is, I've got your back…the whole squad has your back…okay?" he said firmly.

She smiled, "Yes Sir," she replied, smiling as he groaned.

"I take it Alex is planning on talking to McCoy?" he asked.

Olivia nodded, "Actually, she's talking with Donnelly right now…getting some approach advice," she said, wondering how her girlfriend was getting on.

Liz looked at her, "You're committing career suicide Alex," she said flatly.

Alex shrugged her shoulders, "I suppose that's one way of looking at it," she answered flippantly.

"Spare me the attitude, false bravado doesn't sit well on you," Liz retorted.

Alex felt as though she was in the Principal's office and resisted the urge to roll her eyes, she looked directly into Liz's eyes, "I came here to ask your advice, not for your opinion on my private life. I'm sorry for wasting your time, Judge," she said rising from the sofa.

"I'm not finished," Liz announced and waited for Alex to sit back down. She looked at the rigid jaw and cold glare in her eyes, "When you first joined the bureau you were arrogant and naïve and ambitious…you reminded me of myself…I've watched you grow as a prosecutor Alex, I've heard the eloquence and the passion in your closing augments and marveled at your oratory skills during trial…if you choose to make your affair with Olivia public, people will see your sexuality first before they see the people's prosecutor, is that really what you want?" she asked, patting the denim clad knee.

Alex shook her head, "It's more than an affair…she's the love of my life," she admitted, swallowing hard before steeling her reserve.

Liz smiled, "Good, because she'd better be for what you're about to go through with McCoy," she said.

Alex looked at her, "Porter's trial starts next week, we think he's going to out us there…we wanted to strike first, on home soil…we'll be in Washington for the duration, gives us both a chance to wait for the dust to settle back here."

Liz nodded, "McCoy will try and stick you in another hole somewhere, how long did it take you to claw your way out of appeals?" she asked.

"Too long," she groaned.

"His main concern will be prejudicial, your sexuality bears no relevance to any case you prosecute and you'll no longer be able to call Olivia as a witness…always use Stabler," she advised.

Alex nodded, "I had been, even though we weren't seeing each other…he'll try to transfer me, what can I do?" she asked.

Liz smiled, "Leave that with me…you're a popular prosecutor Alex, there's a lot of support for you behind closed doors, if you know what I mean," she said, bobbing her head.

"I need to talk to him soon, I don't want him hearing it from anyone else," Alex said quietly.

"I'll be in touch this afternoon after court," she said, motioning for Alex to rise, "Go, I need to make a few calls, get the ball rolling," she said.

Alex stood and looked at her, "Thanks Liz, I really appreciate your help," she said smiling in relief.

Liz placed an arm around her shoulders, "Don't thank me yet," she whispered and released her.

Alex headed for the door as Liz strode purposefully towards her desk. She lifted the receiver and dialed a familiar number.

Alex opened the door and turned as Liz spoke into the phone.

"Lena…Liz, get the gang together, we have a situation," she instructed, waving goodbye at Alex.

Alex froze at the name and waved absently before closing the door behind her. She looked at her watch and wondered if Olivia was finished with Cragen, as she exited the courthouse her cellphone rang.


"What are you wearing?" a voice whispered.

Alex laughed, "You should know, you helped put them on," she whispered into the phone as she moved behind one of the large pillars at the top of the steps.

Olivia snorted into the phone, "I'd like to offer my services getting them off too…you wanna do it behind the pillar or at my place?" she asked, smiling as Alex's head snapped up.

"Where are you?" she asked, stepping out and looking around until she spotted a familiar figure sitting on a nearby step, "I see you," she said and hung up the phone.

Olivia stood to meet her and smiled broadly at her as she removed her sunglasses, "You okay?" she asked, resisting the urge to touch her.

Alex nodded, "Yeah, let's get out of here and compare notes before we meet Abbie," she said, reaching for Olivia's hand and giving it a brief squeeze before releasing it.

The long camera lens followed the couple as they descended the stone steps, snapping pictures continuously


Chapter 4: Fallout

"So then she said that, 'there's a lot of support for you behind closed doors, if you know what I mean'…what exactly does that mean?" Alex asked from her reclining position on Olivia's bed.

Olivia stuck her head around the corner of her closet and smiled at her, "I think it means you have a lot of female admirers sweetheart," she answered, moving to the bed and placing the clothing in her arms beside the large hold all.

They had arrived at Olivia's apartment a short while ago and discussed their respective conversations with Cragen and Donnelly. Olivia was busy packing clothes to take to Alex's apartment and Alex was lounging on her side on the bed, head propped up by a single hand, discussing her newly discovered 'poster child' status at the courthouse.

"You know, the first person she called was Petrovsky," she said, screwing up her face.

Olivia folded her clothes neatly and placed them methodically in the large bag, she smirked at her girlfriend and shook her head, "Don't pretend that you're not flattered, I can see it in your eyes…you love the attention," she chided.

"I do not!" Alex said indignantly.

Olivia laughed, "Sure you do, you know exactly what you do to people when you strut down a hallway or glide into a room or give someone a little smile…you're sex on legs Cabot.."

Alex moved the hand that was resting along her hip to the mattress and patted it suggestively three times, watching Olivia's face as she did so. Olivia looked at her and the hand resting on the bed before moving the bag to the floor and lying down beside her. She reached over and removed the dark frames, placing them behind her on the night stand. Alex moved her hand along Olivia's side and let it rest gently on her hip.

"The only person I want to impress is you…I told Liz that you're the love of my life," she said shyly, her fingers playing with the back pocket on Olivia's jeans.

Olivia studied the cerulean blue eyes, even more translucent now that the frames were gone. She sighed and brushed a few stray strands away from Alex's face, carefully tucking them behind her ear. She leaned forward and kissed her mouth, then her cheek and then moved to her ear, "You're the best thing that's ever happened to me," she whispered before moving her mouth away.

Alex removed her hand from the pocket and nudged Olivia on to her back and shifted until she was on top of her, legs nestled together. She looked deeply into dark eyes that revealed the honesty and truth of the words she had just spoken, "Really?," she asked.

Olivia smiled, "Yes"

They looked at each other for a long time, Olivia's hands tenderly and rhythmically stroking along the beautiful blonde's back as Alex traced her fingers lightly across Olivia's face and through her hair.

"I look at you and I can't even breathe sometimes," Olivia said quietly, feeling her skin tingle wherever Alex touched.

Alex ducked her head and closed her eyes, "God Liv, the things you say…do you have any idea what you do to me?" she breathed out.

"I do now," she said quietly.

Alex kissed her reverently on the mouth for several unhurried minutes. The connection she felt with Olivia was indescribable and the love she was now free to express was overflowing. As the kiss ended she took a steadying breath, "What time are we meeting Abbie?" she asked.

Olivia smiled, "She said come over around 2pm, what did you have in mind?" she asked, grinning eagerly into bright blue eyes.

"I thought we could drop your stuff off at my apartment and have a long lunch," she said, placing delicate kisses around the parted lips.

Olivia enjoyed the attention and loving touches for several more seconds before replying, "I like how you think," and capturing the teasing mouth in a searing kiss full of intensity and purpose.


Elliot Stabler nearly choked around the mouthful of coffee he had just taken as he heard his name being bellowed from behind. He placed the mug on his desk and swiveled out of his chair and headed towards the Captain's office.

"Close the door," Cragen instructed as he sat down, motioning for Elliot to do the same.

"What's up Cap?" he asked as he lowered himself into the chair.

Donald Cragen looked at Elliot and wondered how honest he should be, he had no doubts Elliot already knew about Olivia and Alex, they were exceptionally close partners, but he didn't want Olivia to feel he had betrayed her trust. He nodded his head and looked at Elliot's expectant expression.

"I had breakfast with your partner," he announced, noticing the instant change on Elliot's face.

Elliot nodded, "How is she?" he asked, forcing it out as casually as possible.

"Her wounds are healing well and she seemed relaxed and happy," he said.

Elliot nodded again, "Good, time away was what she needed, what they both needed to get away from everything that's happened, it's crap the trial starts next week though," he replied.

"Elliot…she told me about her and Alex," Cragen said quietly, glancing down at his desk briefly.

"Cap'n, if you brought me in here to tell me I'm getting a new partner…" he said, voice rising as he stood angrily, "then you can take my badge too," he finished, ripping off his shield and placing it on the desk, shaking his head in rage.

"Sit down Elliot!"

"You think anyone cares who she sleeps with? She's seen more crap…is the best person I've ever seen with a vic…been through too much on her own, for me to give a shit about who's she's with as long as she's happy…" he spat out.

"I said sit down…Detective"

Elliot reluctantly sat down and glared at his Captain, a thousand thoughts going through his head, but Cragen interrupted him before he could verbalize any of them.

"You're not getting anew partner, Olivia isn't leaving, she isn't being transferred…so you can quit the glares before I show you why I got that first writ in my jacket," he warned.

Elliot held his threatening gaze for a few seconds before nodding his head, "I'm sorry," he said, visibly relaxing.

"Okay, let's start this again. Olivia told me about her and Alex and about Porter possibly 'outing' them at the trial. I trust Abbie implicitly, she won't let that idiot have his day, but I want to make sure she's protected here. I don't expect them to flaunt their relationship in front of anyone but they won't be hiding it either. They're both professionals…I want to make sure we're okay with that," he said, indicating the squad room beyond the closed door.

"Cap, everybody loves Liv…nobody knows much about her private life anyway, Munch and Finn are like older brothers to her…they wouldn't let anyone say anything about her, trust me," he said, raising his eyebrows and nodding his head knowingly.

Cragen shook his head, "I know but what about anyone she's ever had a run in with? The last thing either of them needs is Tucker in here asking questions," he replied.

"Why would IAB be involved?"

Cragen looked at him, "I'm thinking worse case scenario here Elliot, I want to make sure if anything comes out at that trial and if anyone starts snooping around my squad that I've got nobody looking to score points with the Brass at Liv's expense," he paused, "When Liv comes back to work, I want to be sure she's amongst friends," he finished.

Elliot saw the determination in his eyes and knew Donald Cragen was serious. He nodded, "She will be," he said.


Olivia watched as Alex folded the last of the clothes she had brought neatly into a drawer in the dresser. She leaned casually against the wall beside the door with her arms folded, smiling as her girlfriend made room for her belongings. She looked around the large room, almost the size of her entire apartment and marveled at the pale blue tones that brought a cloud like feel to the spacious room.

Alex turned and caught Olivia's eyes wandering around the room, "What?"

"Nothing, I just can't believe I'm here and you're doing that," she said, pointing to the open closet and the chest of drawers.

Alex moved over to her and placed both hands on the folded arms, "Well you are and I am," she said, kissing her.

Olivia unfolded her arms and laced her fingers together behind Alex's back, "I wish we didn't have Porter to deal with," she sighed.

"Look at it as a free trip to DC," Alex said optimistically.

Olivia was about to answer when her cellphone rang, she retrieved the phone from her pocket and looked at the display, "It's Elliot," she said.

"Ask him over, I'll make lunch," Alex said, releasing her.

Olivia caught the hand of the departing blonde and pulled her back, kissing her tenderly, "I love you," she whispered and kissed her again.

"Gee Liv, I love you too…do I get one of those kisses?" Elliot's voice said from the phone in her other hand.

Alex rolled her eyes and spoke into the handset, "No, those lips are mine," she said smiling as she left the room.

Olivia snorted, "Sorry El, forgot it was my phone and not the borrowed one," she said, cursing the any key answer function.

"I'm only teasing, Cap says you met him for breakfast, you holding out on me partner?" he asked lightly.

Olivia smiled into the phone, "No, I um, I told him about me and Alex, "she said quietly.

"Good for you, he called me into his office and told me you'd met him, I thought you'd resigned or something Liv," he said, deciding to be honest with her.

Olivia moved to the bed and sat down, "No, we just wanted to make sure we knew where we stood. Alex spoke to Liz this morning," she said.


"Yeah, we think McCoy's gonna try and transfer her out…or worse," she trailed off, thinking about Jack McCoy.

Elliot heard her voice fade away, "Liv, it'll be okay," he said, trying to convince them both.

"Yea…look d'you wanna come over to Alex's for lunch? We need to meet Abbie in a coupla hours but it'd be great to see you El, fill you in," she said.

Elliot paused before answering, "You moved in already?" he teased.

"Not quite…I'm working on it though," she answered, only half joking.

Elliot laughed, "I'll be there in twenty minutes…and I want details," he said and hung up.

Olivia looked up and met the smiling face of her girlfriend.

"Working on what?" Alex asked from the doorway.

Olivia stood and crossed the room, never breaking the loving eye contact. She wrapped her arms around Alex, "Showing you how much I love you," she whispered.


Chapter 5: Firefly

"That was impressive Alex, thanks," Elliot said before taking a drink from his glass of soda.

Alex smiled, "You're more than welcome, can't really go wrong with pasta," she answered modestly.

Olivia turned to her, "It was great, thank you," she said quietly, placing her hand over the one on the table.

Elliot watched them and smiled at the natural display of affection. Despite his deep religious beliefs and all the teachings he had ever learned, 'love is love, in any shape or form,' he mused, remembering an old quote. He looked at his partner and was surprised by how open and readable her expression was, he'd couldn't remember ever seeing her like this before and knew it was all down to the woman she was gazing at.

"Did you invite me over just for the food and the floor show?" he teased.

Both heads looked over at him.

"Sorry El," Olivia said.

Alex looked at him, "How's everything with you?" she asked.

Elliot smiled, "Chaos as usual but it keeps me sane," he answered.

Olivia returned his smile, "How's my boy?"

Alex shook her head, "Your boy?"

Elliot snorted, "Ever since the car crash, where wonder woman here," he paused, pointing across the table at Olivia, "Saved Kathy's life and helped deliver Eli, she's called him, her boy," he answered, beaming proudly at his partner.

Alex contained her shock at this revelation, she knew about Eli but she didn't know about the car crash and made a mental note to pursue it later with Olivia in private. She smiled at Elliot, "Have you got any new pictures?"

Elliot reached into his back pocket and retrieved his wallet, producing several small photographs which he handed over to Alex.

Alex studied the pictures and smiled at the chubby cheeks and twinkling eyes, "He has your eyes," she commented, looking up at Elliot unaware of the gravity of her statement.

Elliot grinned back at her, "Yeah, he does," he answered, catching Olivia's eyes watching him. He smiled at her and swallowed.

Olivia looked at him and bobbed her head slightly.

"Olivia's his Godmother," Elliot supplied.

Alex handed the pictures back and reached for Olivia's hand again, "I can't think of anyone more suited for that role," she said quietly, giving the hand she held a gentle squeeze.

"I'm really happy for you two," Elliot said, steepling his fingers under his chin and looking at them. "When the trial's over, Kathy wants you both over for dinner," he stated.

Alex nodded her head, "Is this the part where you question my intentions towards your partner?" she asked coolly.

Elliot laughed, "Something like that, it'd be nice to get to know you away from the job Alex, especially if you're planning on sticking around," he said casually, wary of the looks Olivia was directing at him.

Alex smiled at him, "Elliot…I'm going to tell you the same thing I told Liz Donnelly…Olivia's the love of my life," she paused to gaze into the concerned face beside her, "We'd love to come over for dinner," she finished, turning to look at him once more, feeling Olivia squeeze her hand.

Olivia blinked a few times, unable to absorb the fact that their ADA, her girlfriend, had just told her partner, how much she meant to her. She felt her heart swell with happiness and smiled uncontrollably, concern instantly erased.

Elliot nodded, "You certainly have a way with words, I'll give you that…I think I'm in love with you," he teased, catching the napkin Olivia threw at him.

Alex stood in the kitchen, rinsing the dishes as Olivia and Elliot sat in the living room. She absently looked out the window, reflecting on the discussions over the past hour. She knew he would probe her about her intentions with his partner, but she had been surprised at his genuine display of happiness for them both, especially considering his well known beliefs. She realized his feelings for his partner and her happiness transcended anything written down and felt a surge of new respect for the man. She had also been touched at Don's concern and wished her boss would be the same, knowing he wouldn't.


She turned to see Elliot behind her and smiled, "Hey," she greeted warmly.

"I just gotta call, I need to go…thanks for the food," he said, moving towards her.

She nodded, "Anytime Elliot, I mean that, I know how important you are in Liv's life and I hope it stays like that for a long time," she said honestly.

Elliot smiled, "She's one of a kind," he said reflectively.

"She certainly is," Alex replied absently.

Elliot looked at the expression on her face and smiled, "You're meant for each other," he said.

Alex smiled up at him, "Ye we are," she answered instantly.

They stood awkwardly looking at each other, both reflecting on their new common bond.

Elliot stepped forward, tentatively giving her a light hug.

Alex hesitantly placed her arms around him.

"Welcome to the family," he whispered as he released her after a few seconds.

Alex blinked a few times and swallowed, "Thank you," she said before glancing away.

"I gotta go," he said regretfully and nodded.

Alex gave him a gentle shove, "Go."

Alex looked at the clock on the kitchen wall as she moved out into the living room and sighed, they would need to leave soon to meet Abbie.


Olivia appeared barefoot in the hallway in unfastened jeans and a bra, "Yeah?" she asked moving towards her.

"We need to go soon," she said, admiring the toned body on display.

Olivia nodded, "Okay," she replied and headed back down the hallway.

"What are you doing?" Alex asked the retreating form as she followed her.

Olivia turned at the bedroom door and looked at her questioningly, "Isn't it obvious…I'm waiting for you," she said smiling as she ducked out of sight.

Alex stared at the vacant spot in the hallway, overawed by the woman in her bedroom. She moved slowly towards the door and paused admiring the view, "We don't have time…we're due there in less than thirty minutes," she said stepping into the room.

Olivia smiled at her from her seated position at the end of the bed, "Abbie called while you were in the kitchen…pushed it back an hour," she replied, raking her eyes over Alex's body.

Alex saw the hungry look and felt her stomach flutter, "Oh well then…" she said, removing her sweater and moving towards her. By the time she got to the edge of the bed, eager hands were reaching out and unzipping her jeans. She cupped Olivia's face, "I love you," she said, leaning down and kissing her deeply.

Olivia returned the kiss and somehow managed to lower the jeans at the same time. Alex pulled away laughing, "In a hurry?" she husked, kicking off her sneakers and removing her jeans and underwear.

"I need you," Olivia choked out, reaching for Alex's hands and tugging her onto the bed until she was nestled on top of her.

Alex kissed her furrowed brow and looked into open dark eyes, "You've got me," she whispered.

Olivia blinked and reached up, kissing her hotly as her hands wandered along familiar territory. Alex moaned as she felt the button on Olivia's jeans rub against her sensitive skin and ground into her.

"These have got to go," she said, moving her hands between their bodies and pushing Olivia's jeans down her long legs. Olivia's patience lasted ten seconds before she was plucking at the denim herself and forcing them and her underwear down. Alex sat back, straddling Olivia's thighs and reached around to remove her bra. Olivia sat up and leaned forward, capturing a hardened nipple between eager lips. Alex gasped in surprise as the hot mouth sucked greedily on her breast as she slipped the straps down her arms. Olivia held her in place as she moaned wantonly at the exquisite taste in her mouth.

Alex moved her hands to Olivia's back and released the catch on her bra, pulling the silky material away from the olive toned skin. She held Olivia close as she felt teeth graze her sensitive peak and held the dark head firmly against her. She felt Olivia's hand move between them, seeking out her throbbing clit and gave herself over to the talented fingers and torturing mouth.

Abbie Carmichael was known for a lot of things, patience, was not one of them. She looked at her watch again and blew out a frustrated sigh, as she reached for the phone, a knock sounded on the office door.

"What?" she barked.

Olivia opened the door allowing Alex to enter first. She noted Abbie's stance and the expression on her face, "Sorry we're late, we got held up," she said, smiling apologetically as she closed the door behind them.

"Do I look like someone who just stepped off the Mayflower to you?" she groused, frowning at them both.

Alex snorted at Abbie's childish tone, "It's my fault, I'm sorry," she said, moving towards the two chairs positioned in front of the desk.

Abbie continued to glare at them, sighing loudly as she sat down, "Okay…next time…try to tone down the afterglow though…some of us are a long way from home," she drawled, unable to hide her smirk as twin blushes appeared on both faces. She pointed at Olivia, "You glow like a lightning bug after sex," she said accusingly.

Olivia gasped loudly, "I do not," she replied in horror, glaring at her ex-lover.

"Yes, you do," Alex and Abbie chorused at the same time.

Olivia felt her cheeks burn and she looked between them both, "I have olive skin…I always glow," she said defensively.

Alex reached for her hand, "I think it's cute," she said, trying to control the laughter rising in her throat. She gazed deeply into dark eyes until Olivia finally smiled at her.

"Uuugghh…must you?" Abbie asked, rolling her big brown eyes and shaking her head.

Olivia turned away from Alex and looked at Abbie, "What d'you need from us?"

"I need to get your depositions down, make sure I have all the details, it shouldn't take too long," she said, rising from the chair. She reached for the phone, lifted the receiver and waited a few seconds, "Hi Leslie, they're here, you all set…good, see you in a few," she said and hung up. She looked at them both, "Court reporter," she said, indicating the phone.

A few minutes later a small, red haired woman entered the office carrying a stenograph. She said hello to the occupants in the room, sat at the corner table and readied herself to record the testimony.

"Liv, why don't you go for a walk while it's still daylight…before you end up in a lab at the Smithsonian," Abbie quipped, ignoring the outraged look she received.

Almost three hours later, two weary figures emerged from the Federal Building.

"You hungry?" Alex asked in a tired tone.

Olivia looked at her, "Yeah…out or in?" she asked.

"Definitely in, with the door locked," Alex replied.

Olivia smiled, "That went better than I thought…Abbie was in a good mood," she said sarcastically, guiding Alex towards the street in order to hail a cab.

Alex snorted, "Wonder who she's got waiting for her in Washington, did you pick up on that?"

"Yeah…she hasn't mentioned anyone…" Olivia trailed off, wondering who it could be.

Alex linked her arm through Olivia's as a cab pulled up, "C'mon my little firefly, let's get you home," she teased, laughing as Olivia groaned.

As they slid into the back seat, a cellphone rang. Olivia looked at her, "Not me," she said.

Alex retrieved her phone from her pocket, shrugging at the unrecognized number, "Alex Cabot," she greeted.

"Alex, it's Liz, we need to talk…meet me at my office as soon as you can…bring Olivia," Liz Donnelly said curtly before hanging up.

Olivia looked at her expectantly, watching closely as Alex blew out a frustrated breath.

"Liz needs to see us…now," she said.

Olivia nodded before giving the driver their new destination.

Part 6

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