Author: writingtoreachyou PM
Benson finally has her happily ever after with ADA Hayden and their newborn daughter. Only Fin knows that Olivia's fairytale is bittersweet, and that if the truth about her baby girl were revealed it could have a very different ending...Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Hurt/Comfort - O. Benson & E. Stabler - Chapters: 62 - Words: 167,215 - Reviews: 861 - Favs: 99 - Follows: 132 - Updated: 09-17-12 - Published: 02-25-12 - id: 7871010
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
"I understand, mom."
Were the first words uttered by Olivia Benson after several hours sat silent at her mother's graveside. Cross legged on the grass in her almost uniform black trousers, boots and an old favourite maroon blouse. In her lap she cradled a gurgling Eve, who, despite the earth shattering events of the previous few days remained blissfully content. Heavy lashes blinked over saucer wide azure eyes as she stared up at her mother with the unflinching faith that she would hold back the tide. Be it fear, danger, loss, disappointment or heartache that came for her Olivia would stand face to the wind and fight like hell to protect her.
"All those years we fought. All the nights you drank and I cried. All the times I was so sure, so cocky and self important and so goddamn sure that I knew it all. You were raped and you hated me for the pain that caused you. I didn't have the right to presume to understand. I could never have. Not until now. Not until Evie."
Reaching down and brushing her fingertips along Eve's cheek Olivia sighed adoringly, choking back tears and realising that nothing would ever be as strong as the love she felt for that child.
"You didn't hate me you hated that you couldn't protect me. You hated that my mere existence was locked up and tied down to something that you knew would hurt me. I'm not saying it's the same. It isn't. Elliot is a good man. He's a great man. He just can't be her Dad. I knew that going into this so I lied. I couldn't give her the world I wanted to, the world she deserved, so I create a new one. I made believe that David was her father and we could have this perfect little family. I should've known it wouldn't last. No lie that big can hold out against reality. Not even when you want it as badly as I did."
"I've been going through hell trying to find you Olivia."
"David!" she gasped, twisting around to find him standing behind them suddenly. "How long have you been stood there? Were you listening?"
"To you talking to your dead mother the way you won't even talk to me?" came the cold, calm response as the initial relief at having found them both safe and well faded to raw anger.
"Don't you dare..."
"I had to hear about what happened at the 1-6 the other day from freakin' Novak!" yelled David, his words echoing uncomfortably around the cemetery. "You just took off to some roadside motel without even so much as a text or a note! I've been out of my mind! Do you have any idea the number of possible scenarios I imagined? Did you even think about me at all?"
"You wanna keep your voice down?" hissed Olivia, clambering to her feet and lifting Eve to her shoulder so that she might hide her face from David's obvious disgust.
"I deserve more, Olivia." Were the words that entirely immobilised her with their truth.
"All I have done, all I have ever done is love you. Right from the start. I deserve more than hearing about Carrie Eldridge's little stunt from a colleague. I deserve more than you just disappearing without a word. I deserve better."
"I don't know what I'm doing anymore, D."
"Olivia..." he began slowly, having come armed for a fight and yet now finding nothing more than battle scars.
"I thought I had... it all seemed... but now..." shaking her head steadily from side to side she stopped attempting to form words, instead just lowering her eyes and settling them silently on the grass.
"I think that we need to take some time." Pausing for a beat in the shadow of a fading dream David added, "Apart."
"What?" she asked, eyes flying up to his. "David, no!"
"Oh come on, Olivia. Did you honestly expect me anything else? I heard about what happened that day. I heard all about it. I heard about Elliot Stabler playing the hero up on the roof from Munch and Rollins. I heard about how close Eve came to disaster from Fin. I heard about how shaken up you were from Cragen."
"I should've called you right away I just..."
"But I think I could've moved past all of that. I could've justified and rationalised the way I always do if I hadn't stopped for a mocha at the cart outside the precinct on my way here."
"A mocha?" she asked, losing his conversational thread.
"Where I heard about the way you and Elliot were with each other..." bitterly, and with finality in his eyes David added, "... from the girl who sells the coffee."
"I was terrified, D! He was just being a friend and..."
"Elliot Stabler will never just be a friend to you. Don't delude yourself and don't insult my intelligence."
"What I meant was..."
"Tell me you don't love him?" challenged David, forcing their issue once and for all. "Tell me that you're stomach doesn't roll when you see him? Tell me that every time you look at Eve, every time they're in a room together you're freakin' womb doesn't ache because she's his child?"
"We can play house all we like Olivia but the truth is that if you're still in love with Elliot Stabler then what's the point?" shrugging with helpless defeat David stared at her, watching, waiting for a reaction, waiting for a release.
"It's all just too much. I can't do it. I can't do this. I know I've messed it all up and I'm sorry but I just..." gasping for air Olivia clutched Eve and pushed on, forcing herself to form words.
"No it isn't! None of it is. I just don't know how to fix it. I don't have anything left in me to fight with. My head is swimming and I can't think straight and my heart..." with her voice trembling she whispered, "... my heart is just too full and I..."
"I love you, Olivia."
"David..." stepping forward she reached out, setting her hand on his collar bone and staring deep into his eyes.
"You were Stabler's partner for over a decade and it doesn't matter whether what the hell kind of relationship the two of you had then or have now, the reality is the same. You had his baby. I was an idiot to think that I could just paper over that with what we may or may not have."
"You're bleeding out and I was only ever just a band aid."
"I wanted this to work so badly..."
"But it was never going to, was it? Not while your head and heart are still so full of him. We never stood a chance."
"Take some time. Take a trip. Be with Evie and just be her mom for a while. Since the moment she was born it's all been about who her father is but the one constant she can always rely on is that she has you. You're her mother and that is absolute so just let it be the two of you for a while. Think about it all. Figure out what it is you want, for you and for her."
"But what about you, D?" asked Olivia softly, seeing goodbye in his eyes.
"You've been through so much this past year and it's not over. I'm not going anywhere. I'll still be here tomorrow. I'll still be here next week, next month, next year. You need to end whatever it is you have with Stabler before we can start to build a life together. You need to figure out whether you even want to end whatever it is you have with Stabler because if you don't..." bending down to press a kiss against Eve's temple he leant over and gifted the same on Olivia's adding, "... we're over before we've even begun."
"I never meant to hurt you..." and, despite everything, he smiled because he knew she really didn't, "... you have to believe that?"
"I believe it. I believe you. You've got more love to give than anyone I have ever known Olivia..." though he may have waving a white flag David Hayden was no victim, "... just make sure you're giving it to someone who deserves it."