DISCLAIMER: Women's Murder Club and its characters are the property of James Patterson, 20th Century Fox Television and ABC. No infringement intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

By Demeter


In the doorway, the man looks back at her over his shoulder, and he winks at her. Lindsay stands with her back against the wall, arms crossed over her chest, meeting his gaze unflinching. Another killer, another piece of her soul, but it's worth it to know that he'll never touch another woman again. The knowledge fills her with a grim satisfaction that is stronger than the first visceral reaction, a profound nausea. The door falls shut. The spell is broken.

As she drives home later in the warm spring evening, the memories come back like photographs from a long forgotten album not opened in a long time.

Lindsay is not obsessing about him these days, not the way she used to, but every now and then she still wonders how she could not know, why her instincts had betrayed her when it would have counted. It's over now. It's in the past, locked away safely.

She has excuses; her life was a mess back then, she was struggling for closure with a future uncertain. He'd been waiting carefully for the perfect moment.

When she thinks back now, there was... something in the way she would turn away, couldn't seem to relax in his presence even though he was nothing but the perfect Prince Charming. A prince with fairy tales and a chamber of horrors. She didn't listen closely enough.

Cindy isn't home yet, so Lindsay uses the time to take a quick shower to ward off the chill that usually comes with the trip down memory lane. Afterwards, she starts preparing dinner, the simple task a welcome distraction from the images, past and present, that are lingering.

Today's predator has confessed all twelve murders he committed in detail, and he trememdously enjoyed showing off, even more so to a female cop. Lindsay has her ways of coping back into place, working like they once did. Even when it sometimes seems a little too much.

The moment she walks through the door, Cindy knows. She isn't going to prod, but it's obvious in her concerned gaze. Cindy is patient; while no yellow tape or barrier can stop her, she does respect Lindsay's boundaries.

"Long day?" she asks, and Lindsay shrugs. "Aren't they all?" She steps forward though, and Cindy lets herself be drawn into her embrace, holding her in return. The touch is warm and safe.

The fog of remembrance lifts.

"Thank you," Lindsay says. Cindy looks up at her with a smile, but she doesn't ask. It's because she knows.

Another piece of her soul, back into place.

The End

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