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Night Falls
By Demeter


On a beautiful sunny afternoon, Tom sends her home under threats of suspension or partnering her with the oogling Inspector Fong. Feeling slightly overtaxed with the decision which would be the worse fate, Lindsay agrees. It's true, she is tired. There's been a lot of work involved once they found the location of the San Francisco Dollhouse, an identical replica of the one in L.A. There have been endless interrogations, witness interviews, mountains of paperwork. Lindsay thinks that if she's never get to hear the word Dollhouse again, it wouldn't be too soon.

Unfortunately, it's always there, in her home, her life, everything.

She comes home to find Cindy in the bedroom, just having changed into comfort clothes. Her hair is still damp from the shower.

"You're early," she observes. "I was just going to start dinner."

"I missed you."

Cindy smiles at that, clearly pleased with the thought, and Lindsay thinks that maybe today is the day when they finally get a break. It all seems so normal. She sits beside Cindy on the edge of the bed.

"What? I always miss you. So... Now I know you're wearing my shirts when I'm not around." She tugs on it lightly, pulling her closer but all playfulness is gone in a heartbeat when memory rips straight into the present scene. There was a time when I missed you so badly I thought I'd die.

"Don't you just like that idea."

"I do." Lindsay tries hard to stay focused, in the moment. She reaches up a hand to touch Cindy's cheek, thumb brushing over warm soft lips. Cindy's eyes widen but she stays still under the caress, so Lindsay leans forward to kiss her. In a matter of seconds, she feels like she's burning up with want. It's been so long since they've been together like that, too many obstacles, fears in the way.

But Cindy kisses her back, a hand firmly on the back of her neck. Lindsay finally gets daring, sliding her hands underneath the SFPD shirt Cindy is wearing, the contact with warm skin making her breathless. She wants her so badly, wants to pleasure her in every way she can possibly thinkk of when Cindy draws back.

"I'm sorry," she says, tears in her eyes. "I can't."

A slap to the face couldn't have felt more stunning.

After a moment of simply catching her breath, Lindsay takes Cindy's hands in both of hers and when the tears start to fall, she wipes them away softly. "It's okay. Everything's okay."

Cindy's gaze is doubtful, but she lets herself be drawn into an embrace anyway. "I hate this. I so wanted this to be different."

So did I, Lindsay silently agrees but this is where we are now. And for the first time she is beginning to admit to herself that there might be no going back. No magic moment for them to pick up exactly where they left off all those months ago. It's not possible. She's been dwelling on her own hopes and needs for too long. It's not the first time the though has been on her mind, but maybe it's the first time she truly accepts it.

Maybe, in order to keep Cindy in her life, she has to let her go.

Holding her close with no more intent than a friend consoling another, she lets Cindy cry for both of them.

The End

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