DISCLAIMER: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and its characters are the property of NBC and Dick Wolf.
THANKS: To Leslie for the awesome sketch of Alex & Olivia that sorta inspired this story and to all of you for reading and especially everyone on the Yahoo Group, vivalab – you guys rock!
AUTHOR'S NOTE: Part of the story range, Undercover.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Undercover III: Charades
By VivalaB


Part 7

The low hum of chatter faded into the background as Olivia Benson realized Alex Cabot was about to kiss her. She parted her lips as she felt a hot breath dance across her open mouth and closed her eyes expectantly.

When nothing happened she opened her eyes and frowned as Alex's gaze was fixed on the other side of the room, "What?" she asked, feeling her cheeks burn with embarrassment.

Alex shifted her eyes and sighed, "They ignored us, they moved to the other side of the room and are talking with a group of women," she replied, easing away and settling into the sofa. She reached for her coffee and took a tentative sip, "Mmm, you should try this blend, it's really dark and rich," she commented absently, unaware of the confusion etched on Olivia's face.

Olivia followed the trail of the cup as Alex lifted it to her lips and blinked slowly, trying to clear the images of the beautiful mouth that had only been a whisper away from kissing her. She blew out a weary sigh as she reached for her own cup and took a long sip, surprised by the heady aroma that assaulted her senses, "You're right, this is good," she said, hoping her voice sounded normal.

Alex took another sip and turned her head slightly, unable to contain the smile that threatened to break out across her porcelain features. She had been so close to kissing Olivia, pulling away at the last second, as she realized just how much she wanted to taste those lips. Fortune had smiled on her as the couple moved across the room, providing her with a timely excuse, even if it was only a temporary reprieve. Her feelings for Olivia had always been strong, but she'd kept them well hidden behind her cool façade for such a long time, never daring to hope they could possibly be reciprocated. The signs Olivia had given her over the last twenty four hours, however, indicated otherwise.

"How's the coffee?" their chirpy blonde waitress asked as she hovered over them

Olivia tilted her head, "Yeah, it's different, dark and smooth, very aromatic," she replied smiling.

The blonde nodded her head enthusiastically at Olivia's response and smiled shyly over at Alex, "Did you like it?" she asked timidly, blushing instantly.

Alex smiled, "Very much, but then I have a weakness for dark and smooth," she answered innocently, casting a sideways glance at the watching detective.

The young waitress stood speechless and swallowed nervously, "When you're um…ready…to try something different…just let me know," she replied, holding Alex's intense gaze.

Alex nodded, "I think I'll stick to what I've got for now…but thank you," she said, smiling sweetly.

Olivia watched the waitress leave and nudged Alex, "That was cruel, toying with her like that," she chided, taking a sip from her cup.

Alex turned to her and snorted, "You think it's alright for her to be hitting on me when I'm here with you?" she asked, shaking her head in disbelief.

Olivia shrugged, "Far be it from me t cramp your style Alex," she retorted, feeling the wave of jealousy as it crashed around her shoulders.

Alex stared at her, "Maybe I like dark and smooth…more than you know," she threw back, consciously lowering her tone.

"What's that supposed to mean?" Olivia asked, shaking her head as she placed the cup on the table.

Alex rolled her eyes, "And you're the detective," she muttered sarcastically under her breath.

Olivia leaned in closer as her anger flared, "I'm a great detective and you know it," she said quietly, staring into the bright blue depths.

Alex shifted her head until there was only a few inches between them and licked her lips, "So you say," she husked quietly.

Olivia became aware of the pulse point beating wildly at the base of Alex's throat as her own heart thumped loudly against her chest, she bit her lower lip and felt the air between them thicken as Alex's eyes dropped to her exposed cleavage and leaned forward, parting her lips.

"Ladies, I hope we're not interrupting?"

They stared at each other for few seconds before reluctantly shifting their eyes and meeting the faces of the couple they were looking for. Olivia reached for Alex's hand and held it gently, "Can we help you?" she asked, smiling at the man and woman.

The man gestured with his hand to the low coffee table, "May we speak with you for a few moments, it won't take long," he asked, looking between them both hopefully.

Alex nodded, "Please," she replied, smiling at the couple.

"Permit me to introduce myself, my name is Ben Zucker and this is my wife, Geraldine," he said, motioning to the woman beside him.

The woman smiled, "Call me Gerry," she added.

Alex nodded her head in greeting, "I'm Alex and this is my partner Olivia," she replied, squeezing Olivia's hand.

The dark haired man with perfect teeth and a crooked smile looked at their hands, "Do you mind me asking if you are married?" he asked tentatively.

Olivia smiled, "We had our commitment ceremony a few years ago, before they changed the law…we're getting married this year to mark out tenth anniversary," she supplied, leaning in and kissing Alex on the cheek.

Ben smiled, "Congratulations to you both, have you…any children?" he asked tentatively.

Alex dipped her head sadly as Olivia released her hand and draped an arm comfortingly around her shoulders, "It's okay sweetie," she paused and looked up, "We've tried adopting, but we've been turned down four times now," she added.

Gerry shook her dark head in sympathy, "I'm so sorry to hear that, you're a beautiful couple, I'm sure you would give any child a wonderful life," she said sincerely.

Ben looked at Olivia, "Why have you been refused, if you don't mind me asking Olivia?" he asked.

Olivia smiled, "I have a criminal record, nothing major, a minor felony for insider stock trading, but it's enough to stop us from completing our family," she replied, shaking her head solemnly.

"Insider trading?" Ben asked curiously.

Olivia blew out a frustrated sigh, "Before we started our own software company, I was a program developer…I made good money, I'd made a few connections on Wall St and would pass their information around for them…off the grid…I got caught, I only received a fine and community service…but it stays on my record," she answered, leaning into Alex and kissing her again.

Alex lifted her head, "It's not your fault Liv," she whispered, almost convincing herself of the lie they were perpetuating.

Olivia gazed at her, "I've let you down, we'll never have the baby we long for," she said quietly.

"Actually…we might be able to help," Ben started hesitantly.

Both heads turned to the couple, sitting on the table and frowned, "How?" Alex asked.

Gerry smiled, "We came in to the coffee shop to ask for donations for our orphanage in El Paso County, we visit the city once a week for fundraising events, our children are the innocent victims of the Drug Cartels," she said sadly, reaching for her husband's hand.

Ben held her hand, "Our children are beautiful, they need homes where people will love them like we have…unfortunately, we don't have the money to look after them on our own, we rely on the kindness of strangers to help us keep them safe and the orphanage running," he added, smiling at his wife.

Olivia nodded her head and reached for her jacket, "We'd like to give a donation," she said, fumbling in the pockets of her leather coat.

"No, that won't be necessary tonight, but I was thinking more along the lines that we could help you adopt one of our beautiful babies," he replied, smiling enthusiastically at them both.

Gerry nodded her head, "We have lots of babies that would love to be part of your already beautiful family," she added.

Olivia turned to Alex, "We could finally be a proper family," she said, swallowing the pretend lump in her throat.

Alex nodded her head, "Our own baby, oh Liv…that would be the best wedding gift ever," she replied, leaning into the one armed embrace and smiling happily.

"Oh Liv…that would be the best wedding gift ever," Olivia mimicked, dodging the pillow that flew at her face.

Alex shook her head, "It's called acting," she said defensively, from her vantage point on the bed.

Olivia turned away laughing as she hung up her leather coat, "I don't care what it is, it worked…we couldn't have planned it any better," she replied, kicking off her boots.

Alex shrugged, " I suppose…it is frightening how easily they believed our story and started talking abut adoption, don't you think?" she asked, lying back and stretching out on the bed.

Olivia shifted her head and felt the reply die on her lips at the sight of Alex lying comfortably on the bed. She raked her eyes appreciatively over the long frame, admiring the gentle rise and fall of silk clad breasts.

"Don't you?" the blonde woman repeated, tilting her head and meeting the lustful gaze, she swallowed nervously under the scrutiny and blinked slowly as she shifted her eyes to the ceiling, trying to calm her racing heart.

Olivia cleared her throat and glanced away, "They've been operating for months, they've got their scam technique perfected, they're smart…they approach a couple, introduce themselves, ask discretely about their relationship…I mean, how many lesbian couples have kids? It's good odds for them," she said, unbuttoning her red shirt.

Alex listened to Olivia's line of logic and nodded in agreement, "So…tomorrow they come here, see us in our natural habitat and give us the once over," she confirmed, turning her gaze back towards the closet, instantly regretting the move as Olivia removed her shirt.

"Yeah, they'll give us the once over, make sure we're scam worthy," she quipped, looking over at the bed and catching the heated blue gaze staring at her, "What?" she asked, glancing down her body.

Alex grinned as she turned her head away, "Nothing…just giving you the once over," she retorted, laughing as the recently discarded shirt landed on her face.

"Pervert," Olivia chided playfully as she removed her pants.

Alex lifted the red shirt and swallowed at the sight of Olivia in her black underwear, biting her bottom lip as she thought of her own pending state of undress.

Olivia moved over to the bed and held out her hand, "Come on…I'll help you out of your dress," she said smiling.

Part 8

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