XXVI - LIVING
"Okay - I have a joke." Grissom's announcement caused all conversation to
cease, and six faces turned towards him expectantly.
"Does it involve bugs?" Warrick asked, grinning. "Is it too cryptic for
the rest of us mere mortals to understand?"
"Does it involve word-play using the periodic table of elements?" Greg
piped up. Everyone laughed.
"Nope. This is an honest-to-goodness joke. Did you hear about the agnostic
dyslexic insomniac?" When no one answered, Grissom finished. "He stayed
up all night asking himself if there really was a dog!"
Everyone groaned. "How much champagne have you had, Grissom?" Sara
teased. "I mean, we've all been drinking - thanks for bringing it by the
way - but what was with that joke? You must be drunk."
Grissom shrugged, smiling. "I just wanted to tell a joke. But the
champagne is good."
Warrick agreed with him, but added, "And you're sure the champagne was your
idea? Not Catherine's?"
"All Grissom!" Catherine giggled. "Although, it's good enough to have
been my idea. Besides, Grissom is the only one who could afford four
bottles of this stuff - it's not cheap."
"That's why I refuse to water mine down with orange juice!" Greg
interrupted, cheerfully raising his glass. "Sweet ambrosia!"
Grissom took a sip from his own glass. "Nectar of the gods!" he agreed.
In the background, the Dixie Chicks were singing. Everyone had laughed at
Grissom's gift to Nick, and even Greg - who hated country music - had
gotten into the swing of things when Sara had insisted on playing 'Good-bye
Earl' right away. Within minutes, the whole crew had been shouting out the
"I just can't feel bad," Catherine had commented. "If anyone ever did
anything like that to Lindsey, I'd kill them. I understand why Becky did
it - I only wish she'd snapped earlier."
Breakfast had been delicious. While they ate, Grissom told Nick about the
autopsy, and the discovery of Earl's tattoo. Nick had merely nodded.
"Cycles. Children learn what they know. At least I'm glad that Nancy is
going to get some help. It's amazing she survived - no one else did."
"Except Becky." Warrick inserted. "And she survived by feeding him
And now, here they were, 3 bottles of champagne gone, 1 to go. The music
had been changed over to radio - the Rivers & Waters morning show, playing
strictly alt. rock, and the general energy level in the apartment was high.
Sara was sitting on Nick's lap, laughing outrageously at something Greg
was saying. Warrick, Brass and Catherine appeared to be having a rather
intense conversation about something, and Grissom was sitting on the sofa,
watching them all and smiling.
He realized as he sat there that these people - his team, his CSIs - were
his friends. As much as he had tried over the years to stay distant, he
hadn't been able to - he had been drawn into friendships and relationships
almost against his will. Maybe Sara's arrival two years ago had been the
catalyst for change in Grissom's life. As he had started caring about her,
the rest of his team had slipped in on the peripheral edges, and had firmly
ensconced themselves in his heart. They were more than friends - they were
his family: Warrick, Greg, Nick, Sara, Brass and lastly Catherine - his
conscience and his sounding board.
He looked to his left as he felt someone slide onto the sofa, beside him.
"What are you doing, Grissom?" Sara asked.
"I'm living," he responded, smiling. "And it's not as bad as I thought it
Authors Note: Thank you so much for the reviews and the support. I hope
no one is disappointed with the ending. The continuation of this story
"VIDEO KILLED THE RADIO STAR" is already in the works, and hopefully I'll
be posting some chapters soon. As I mentioned earlier, I am normally a big
Grissom/Sara 'shipper, but this story basically wrote itself and I was
compelled to make it Nick and Sara, all the way.