DISCLAIMER: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and all characters are
property of NBC and Dick Wolf.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: It was the wasted potential of Abbie's rape never being mentioned on SVU that started my wheels turning, but it was the final interrogation scene in "Payback" that made me really consider what sort of dysfunction would be borne between a victim of rape and a child of rape.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
Victims of Circumstance
It was over. It didn't end in a flash or with dramatic pause, it just ended. Her revelation had been the cause. She was a child of rape. She was part of something that Abbie could never forget no matter how many guilty men she convicted or how many victims she counseled. Her toothbrush was gone and the spare key was on the kitchen table. Olivia didn't need a note, she knew the reason.
She had felt the noose constricting in the weeks prior. At first there was a subtle change. She would catch Abbie watching her out of the corner of her eye as a rape victim gave their statement, studying her with the same deep brown eyes that she had fallen into so long ago, a few times Abbie had actually flinched when Olivia reached for her, and then the nightmares started again. She stopped staying over, always too busy with work when Olivia knew her caseload was less than it had been in months.
She withdrew further and further away, until they barely spoke at work anymore. Elliot became her star witness, presumably so she wouldn't have to talk to Olivia more than necessary. And still Olivia couldn't be mad. She couldn't even fight with Abbie. She was right. Her demons were scary but Olivia had to live with them, she couldn't expect anyone else to.
Olivia wondered if somewhere inside of her the part that was intrinsically her father laughed at the situation; his bastard daughter falling in love with a woman who had been brutalized by men like himself. The irony.
Olivia knew it wasn't her fault, that nothing had changed in her, Abbie just couldn't reconcile loving someone who was the product of something that had brought her world crashing down all those years ago. There were things you could move on from, wounds that could heal, but rape wasn't something you ever forgot.
It wasn't outright deception. No more than Abbie failing to tell Olivia about the rape that had changed her right away. It was a matter of trust. Just like you didn't tell someone you don't know that you are a lesbian, or that you investigate sex crimes. Some things aren't fit for public consumption, they are for friends, for lovers, for people who you can't imagine your life without. And so she had told Abbie and her world had crumbled.
Still as they passed each other in the squad room or courthouse hallways Olivia couldn't imagine her life without her. Even if she was her former lover's worst nightmare reincarnated in someone she once trusted.
So standing in Abbie's office, her personal effects packed haphazardly into two small boxes, Olivia had come to say goodbye. Abbie was leaving for DC in the morning, she'd never have to see Olivia's face again, but she couldn't run away without dealing with the finality of the situation. Abbie had to face her demons like Olivia had, even if Olivia was now one of them.
Abbie looked up, surprised to see the detective hovering above her desk, waiting expectantly.
Her mouth quirked and her eyebrow lifted. "Hey," Olivia said. "I just wanted to come by and wish you luck in DC."
"Thanks." Abbie's expression was stoic, the same way it had been since Olivia had found the key on her kitchen table, appropriately noncommittal.
Olivia studied her face for a long moment, cataloging their last moments together. They were alone for the first time since the wreckage of their relationship had walled her off from Abbie. She took a few hesitant steps toward Abbie who, to her credit, didn't back away, she stood firm. The leather of her jacket creaked as she leaned in to press a kiss against the other woman's cheek. "I would never hurt you," she whispered against Abbie's ear before turning to walk away.
She never looked back, she couldn't. It was time to heal her own wounds now.
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