A/N: I want to thank all the wonderful people who have reviewed/favorited all my past stories! I'm very new to writing so it means so much to me to have so many people like what I've done so far. You are all just to kind :)
This is just a little something that popped into my head :)
Just FYI: I wrote this BEFORE "The Judge" episode aired.
This is my first story to mention Tom…Grrr! But he had to be known for this story to work.
All mistakes are mine and mine alone :)
Disclaimer: I own nothing. Wish I did but I don't.
"THAT BITCH!" Lizzie screamed out. She was in her bathroom all dressed and ready to head to work, of which she was already running late for. The only thing left to do was put on her lipstick. She always left her lipstick for last. Always. Make-up first, then hair, then clothing and then finally lipstick. In Lizzie's eyes lipstick was the most important.
She loved all the colors to choose from, how it felt on her lips and how it could make any outfit look better. Her very favorite lipstick she had found was the Sephora Rouge Shine in Honeymoon No.1. It felt good, stayed on for hours and looked great with her skin tone. Honeymoon No.1 was a beautiful shade of pinkish/brown with just a hint of nude.
And 16 months ago, they discontinued it. When she found out they were no longer going to sale it, Lizzie was devastated. Why was it that every time she found something she liked, they got rid of it? Make-up, foods, TV shows? When she found out they were no longer going to sale her color she went to the Sephora store and bought all that they had. Five tubes. It was it.
Over the last year and a half, Lizzie tried her best to use it sparingly, space out the tubes to make them last as long as possible. Three months ago she opened her very last tube.
Since she discovered that her husband Tom was having an affair a couple of months ago, Lizzie had been slightly depressed. Not because she was sad or upset about losing Tom specifically but what he represented. Lizzie had always excelled at everything. School, sports, work. Marriage, the thing that was the most important, she couldn't make work. She failed at having a successful marriage. She was now a statistic. A divorce woman. She had an ex-husband. It was all very depressing.
In the past two months, since the day Tom said he wanted out because he found someone else. Someone who would be home every night. Someone who wanted to be a mother. Someone who wanted the same things he did. During that whole time, she never got angry. Hurt? Yes. Stunned? Sure. Sad? Absolutely. But never angry.
Standing in her bathroom, time to put on her lipstick. Digging through her make-up drawer, picking up the little black tube, pulling off the lid and unscrewing the bottom just to see that her favorite tube of lipstick was empty.
Someone other then her had been using her favorite lipstick! Anger, rage, hatred, fury and every other word you would described being pissed off ran through Lizzie's body. That son of bitch brought that woman into MY house and let her go in MY bathroom and she used MY LIPSTICK she thought. Lizzie was so angry she was shaking. She could hear the blood rushing in her ears. Her blood pressure was no doubt sky high. She closed her eyes and concentrated on breathing. In and out. In and out.
Just as she re opened her eyes, her cell phone rang. She tossed the empty lipstick tube into the trash can violently before heading into the bedroom to answer her phone. She picked it up on the third ring and saw that it was Ressler calling. Lizzie sighed and then pressed the green Answer button.
"Agent Keen." Lizzie said.
"Keen. You're late. Reddington is pulling into the parking garage now." Ressler said to her.
"Yeah I know. I'll be there as soon as I can." Lizzie said with a sign as she rubbed her forehead.
"Well hurry up. I'm not going to play baby sitter to Reddington while you're taking your sweet time getting to your job." Ressler barked into the phone.
"I SAID I'LL BE THERE AS SOON AS I CAN!" Lizzie screamed into the phone before pushing the red END CALL button. Lizzie's nerves and patience were gone.
This is not going to be a good day. I should call Cooper and tell him I'm taking the day off Lizzie thought to herself but she knew it would cause her even more problems. Cooper would be angry she wasn't at the Blacklist talking to Red and Red would just come to her.
Lizzie took a deep breath and walked back into the bathroom. She reached into her make up drawer and picked another color lipstick and put it on. She knew it looked fine, she knew she looked fine but she could feel the rage flood her body once again as she applied the lipstick to her lips. She frowned, put the lid on the tube and threw it into the drawer before turning around, flipping off the bathroom light, grabbing her cell phone on the bed and heading out the bedroom door.
Hudson, her dog, followed faithfully behind her down the stairs. Once she was downstairs, Lizzie walked to the living room, picked up her jacket and purse that she tossed on the couch the night before, leaned down to give Hudson a quick hug goodbye and headed out the front door to her car.
Because she was running late, the traffic was a little heavier then normal so the drive to work took far longer then it should have. As she pulled up to a red light, her cell rang again. Lizzie sighed as she picked it to look at the caller ID. Nick's Pizza. Jesus she thought. She didn't want to answer but knew she had to.
"Lizzie! Listen as much as I just adore spending time with Donald and catching up on old times with Harold, I really do just come here to see you." Red said in a sarcastic tone of voice.
"I'm on my way now." Lizzie said as the light turned green and she stepped on the gas.
"As I understand it, that's what you told Donald 20 minutes ago. Lizzie I know where you live and you don't live that far away from here." Red said.
"I didn't tell Ressler I was on my way. I told him I would be there as soon as I can and I will." Lizzie said getting irritated.
"Why Lizzie you sound upset. Tense. Is anything wrong?" Red asked.
"No. I'm fine. I'm about 10 minutes away. I'll be there shortly." Lizzie said hanging up the phone.
Lizzie drove the rest of the way a little faster then the posted speed said to so she pulled into the underground parking garage of the Post Office just over 5 minutes after hanging up with Red. As she pulled into her parking space, she saw Red's four door black Mercedes parked directly in front of the elevators, taking up two parking spaces.
Lizzie rolled her eyes. Yes God forbid someone should ding his car she thought to herself. She turned off her car, gathered her stuff and got out heading straight for the elevators. After using her ID badge the elevator doors opened and she stepped inside. The ride to the main floor seemed to take longer then normal. As the doors finally opened she stepped onto the floor and she must have had a look that said BACK OFF because everyone who looked her way immediately turned their heads away and if they were walking near her, they stepped to the side to let her pass. As she was walking she noticed through the windows that her office was empty. She looked up and saw Dembe standing outside Director Cooper's office door and could make out Red standing at the windows watching her.
Lizzie passed by her office and headed up the stairs that would lead to Cooper's office. Dembe nodded to her as he opened Cooper's office door to let her pass by. As she walked in she saw out of the corner of her eye Red was watching her with a curious look on his face.
"Agent Keen you were suppose to be here over…." Director Cooper never finished his statement. He took noticed of the look on her face and stopped mid sentence.
"Yes, Sir I know I'm late. Had a bit of a personal issue to deal with this morning." Lizzie said locking eyes on him. He stared at her for a moment before nodding his head.
Lizzie noticed Ressler was standing against the filing cabinets that were to the right of the windows Red was standing at and Meera was standing next to the door way. Lizzie purposely didn't look in Red's direction as she shrugged off her jacket and took a seat in front of Cooper's desk. She knew if she looked at Red and saw that ever present look of arrogance that was always on his face, she just might snap.
"So what's going on? What did I miss?" Lizzie asked looking between Cooper and Ressler.
"We assume Reddington is bringing us a new name but we're not sure seeing as he won't talk to anyone but you." Ressler said with a frown.
"Well not a name exactly but a group." Red said behind her.
"They call themselves the Amadi Gang. It means "seemed destined to die at birth". They are a small band of drug smugglers specializing in cocaine. The cocaine is produced and shipped out of West Africa. Specifically Cape Verde and Nigeria." Red said taking the empty seat next to her. "In three days time a sailboat will arrive in Staten Island with a very large shipment. Well over $10 million worth. The Amadi Gang is small now but they are wanting desperately to expand their operations in North America. I thought it would be best to stop this now before it got out of hand."
"And you know this how?" Cooper asked.
"They've reached out to me. Wanting help in coming in. They originally wanted to land somewhere in Canada but I talked them into Staten Island so you would have jurisdiction." Red said answering Cooper's question but keeping his eyes on Lizzie.
"We need to get a team up there to set up shop." Ressler said.
"You are going to have to be very careful with this Harold. I know the FBI likes to swoop in, guns a blazing, shoot first, ask questions later and all that. But these guys are not stupid. They won't just come in on a sunny Saturday afternoon with a boat full of drugs. They are smart and have money to throw around to get what they want. The docks in Staten Island will be covered with their people. Watching for even the slightest hint that anyone is on to them." Red said finally looking at Cooper.
Cooper nodded his head. "I'll notify the Coast Guard. Have them get a small team together. Ressler. Keen. Malik. You will head the FBI team. Just the three of you and a few others will head up to Staten Island tomorrow to set up camp. You know what you're doing."
Ressler, Lizzie and Meera all nodded. It's not like this would be the first time they have gone undercover.
"I've got a few of my own guys up there now. They will be reporting to Dembe and myself over the next three days." Red said looking back at Lizzie.
"We don't need you're help, you know." Ressler said.
"Oh but you do Donald. It will look very strange if Raymond Reddington didn't send anyone to oversee a business deal he orchestrated. Remember, I have a reputation to uphold here." Red said smugly.
Ressler shook his head with a frown.
"Alright, everyone is dismissed. Let's get to work." Cooper said as he stood from his chair.
Lizzie immediately got up from her spot, picked up her belongings and walked out of Cooper's office without looking at Red. She quickly walked down the stairs and went straight to her office, shutting the door. After putting her jacket on the back of her chair and her purse in the bottom drawer of her desk, Lizzie sat down in her chair and placed her head on top of her desk. The muscles in her neck were tighter then ever before, her head was pounding and it wasn't even 10AM yet. It's going to be a long day she thought to herself.
She didn't even raise her head when she heard her office door open and shut quietly. She knew who it was.
"Lizzie? What's wrong?" Red asked softly sitting down in Ressler's chair that was across from her own.
"Why would you think something is wrong?" Lizzie muttered, head still on her desk, laying on her folded arms.
"Well you were late for one thing. You are never late. Anywhere. And second, you look tenser then a virgin on her wedding night." Red said with a laugh.
"I'm fine. Just a bad morning." Lizzie said.
"Has Tom been calling you? My guys would have told me if he had been by the house and they haven't. Do I need to have a word with him?" Red said deeply.
"You are having me watched?!" Lizzie exclaimed as she lifted her head from the desk.
"For your own protection. I have many enemy's who would not hesitate in using you to get to me. It's to keep you safe." Red explained.
Lizzie sighed before saying, "No Tom has not came by nor have I talked to him. Matter of fact, I don't want to discuss him at all! He's a cheating son of bitch who isn't worth speaking about! Okay?" Lizzie said angrily.
"I agree completely." Red said with a nod. "That all being said, I still want you to tell me what has upset you. I don't like seeing you upset. Being upset about something can distract you and in your line of work, you can not get distracted."
Lizzie sighed once again and shook her head. She really didn't want to talk about this with him. He wouldn't understand.
"You're a man Red. You wouldn't understand even if you tried." Lizzie said.
Red laughed as he looked at her. "You would be surprised at what I understand about women. Tell me."
Lizzie stared at him before finally saying, "My lipstick." in a soft voice.
Red raised his eyebrow as he continued looking at her.
"My favorite lipstick was empty this morning when I went to put it on. Sephora stopped making it over a year ago and it was my last tube in that color. When I went to use it, it was empty. Tom obviously had brought that woman he was seeing into my house and she had been using it for who knows how long!" Lizzie said. She could feel herself getting angrier and angrier as she replayed the morning in her head.
To her surprise, Red never laughed or cracked a smile. He looked almost…sympathetic.
"I'm sorry. To find out that another woman has been going through your stuff is not right. I'm very sorry Lizzie." Red said looking at her.
"Thanks." Lizzie whispered.
Red smiled slightly before saying, "Look at it this way, if he cheated on you and let her into your house, then there is a good chance that before long he will cheat on her and bring someone else into her home." Red said.
She knows it shouldn't but the thought of that happening made Lizzie smile. She wasn't so much angry at Tom as she was the woman he left her for. If you are going to knowingly sleep with another woman's husband okay fine but at least have enough respect not to use the wife's personal things. That should be the #1 unwritten rule between all women Lizzie thought to herself.
"Thanks Red. I'll be fine. Really. It was just a sucky morning but it's over now." Lizzie said looking at him.
Red smiled before nodding his head. Just then Dembe knocked lightly on her office door.
"Come in." Lizzie said.
"Mr. Reddington, if you are going to make your 11:00 appointment we need to leave now." Dembe said softly.
"Yes, yes of course. Lizzie I'm terribly sorry but I must run." Red said standing up from his seat and putting on his hat.
"It's ok. I've work to do anyways. Got a lot to do before we have to head to New York." Lizzie said.
"Try to relax Lizzie. Stress will kill you. It's not good for your health." Red said.
"I'll try." Lizzie said looking at him.
"Good. I'll see you later." Red said with a smile before walking out of her office. She watched him through her windows as he walked across the main floor of the post office and stepped into the waiting elevator with Dembe by his side.
After he left, Lizzie took a deep breath before standing up from her desk and walking out of her office to look for Meera and Ressler. They had a lot to get done before she could call it a day.
At half past 8PM Lizzie let herself into her house. Hudson, as always, was waiting for her by the door.
"My God what a day Hudson! Did Miss Caroline come by to feed and walk you? Yes she did! Awe you missed Mommy!" Lizzie said to Hudson as she hugged and rubbed his belly.
Hudson licked the sides of her face to show her how happy he was that she was finally home. His tail wagging so fast it was a blur.
After giving Hudson one last pat, Lizzie stood up and carried her bag of Chinese food into the kitchen, stopping briefly to throw her jacket and purse onto the couch.
"Hudson I think it's a dinner in bed while watching TV kind of night, what do you say?" Lizzie asked. Hudson gave her a "woof" in return.
Lizzie gathered up a fork, spoon, some napkins, a bottle of water and a few dog snacks for Hudson before picking up her bag of food and heading for the stairs with Hudson faithfully behind her.
Once in her bedroom, she sat her things down onto her nightstand and pulled the cell phone out from her pants pocket. Sitting on the side of the bed she took off her boots and gave a sigh. Seeing Hudson had already made himself comfortable on the bed next to her she smiled before getting up and heading to the bathroom to change.
As she flipped on the bathroom light she saw it. On the bathroom counter next to the sink was a distinctive black and white bag with Sephora written on and bright red tissue paper coming from the top. Propped up against the bag was a white note card with very familiar red handwriting.
Lizzie walked to the counter, picked up the card and read it.
Hope your day ends better then it started.
See you tomorrow.
PS: Your dog is about worthless! I came in and he ran off to hide under your dining room table.
Lizzie laughed as she finished Red's little note. Still smiling she put down the note and began to pull out the red tissue paper. Looking inside the bag she saw six tubes of Sephora's Rouge Shine in Honeymoon No.1.
Lizzie smiled and could feel her eyes start fill up. Lizzie turned to look at Hudson who was watching her from the bed.
"You know Hudson, Raymond Reddington has his faults but I'll say this for him. He sure does know how to give a gift that will make a girl feel better!"
A/N: Review :)