DISCLAIMER: I don't own 'em, except for Bill, who I wouldn't really want to own anyways…

A/N: I am still continuing with my other story. I have reached a bit of block and should be updating it soon. Thank you to everyone who replied to that story. It means a lot that people are reading and enjoying what I write.

The song featured in here is: Landslide, by the Dixie Chicks, featuring Sheryl Crow.

~~~*~~~ Landslide ~~~*~~~

Sara gathered her things together and headed toward her parked car. Today was the day.

She was finally going to do it. She was going to break up with Bill. Things had been over

for a while now; she just didn't have the urge to break things off with him. Sighing she

slumped down in her seat. She didn't want to break his heart, but truth be told, she was

 more afraid of his reaction.

I took my love and I took it down
I climbed a mountain and I turned around
And I saw my reflection in the snow-covered hills
Well the landslide brought me down
 
 
Sara pulled up to Bill's house. She could see that he was already home, and probably
 cooking something delicious for supper. I wish I wasn't doing this to him; she shrugs as
 she walks up to the door. She could smell the supper on the stove. When Bill opened the
 door, there was a scowl on his face. "Ran late again?"
 
Sara swallowed hard. She had known this wasn't going to be easy. It was getting harder
 and harder to explain why she was wearing long sleeve shirts in the Las Vegas heat. 
"You know how it is. Dead people have no concept of time." She said, trying to crack a
 joke to lighten the already dark mood between them.
 
 
Oh, mirror in the sky
What is love
Can the child within my heart rise above
Can I sail thru the changing ocean tides
Can I handle the seasons of my life
 
Bill barely acknowledged that she said something to him. "Well, supper is ready. Get
 inside. I don't air-condition the streets of Reno." 
 
Sara squared her shoulders and stepped inside. "Actually Bill, I won't be staying for
 supper tonight." Or any night for that matter. 
 
Bill whirled around. "What?" The scowl had returned.
 
Sara cleared her throat. "I won't be staying for supper. I only came by to tell you that it is
over. I don't want to see you or hear from you anymore. I won't let you hurt me one more
 time."
 
Bill took a few menacing steps toward her. "So you think I slaved over the hot stove just
 so you could say that you weren't staying? I thought you understood that I love you and
 that they were accidents. I never meant to hurt you."
 
Sara stared at him, not believing a word that he said. "Listen, Bill. Whether or not you
 meant to hurt me isn't the issue. The issue is that you knew that you were hurting me, yet
 you did it again and again. I can't keep wearing long sleeve shirts to work. I work
 outside for a good portion of my day, and I don't want to have to explain to people why I
 choose to wear long sleeves."
 
Bill stepped toward her, gripping her upper arm, causing Sara to gasp. "Listen to me." He
 shook her a little bit, rattling the teeth in her mouth. "No one is going to love you Sara.
 Not like I love you."
 
Sara looked at him coldly. "I would rather have no one than have love like yours."
 
He tossed her aside, and stepped toward the front door. Swinging it open wildly, he ran
 toward her car that was parked against the curb. Taking out his pocketknife, he began
 methodically slashing her tires. She let out a strangled sob as she heard the air escaping
 them. I'll be trapped here. He could do whatever he wanted to with me, and I have no
 way of getting out. Reaching into her purse, she whipped out her cell phone. Please be
 there, Nick. Pick up the phone.
 
"Stokes." 
 
"Nick." Sara breathed.
 
"Sara?" Nick asked, a little confused. 
 
"Nick, I need your help."
 
"Is it with the case?"
 
"No no… a little more personal than that. I just need you to meet me at Bill's house."
 
Nick sounded even more confused. "Bill's house? Why?" Realization slowly dawned on
 him. "Sara, is he hurting you?"
 
"Not at this moment." 
 
"But he has in the past?" Nick whispered, seeking clarification.
 
"Uh-huh." Sara mumbled. She heard the door slam. Bill came into the entranceway.
 "Nick, please hurry." Her voice became elevated.
 
"Oh? New boyfriend already?" Bill sneered, whipping the phone from her hands. "Listen,
 Nicky. She's mine. You stay away from her."
 
"She doesn't seem to want to be with you, Billy boy." Nick retorted.
 
Bill sneered at the phone, and then tossed it against the wall just over Sara's head. The
 phone broke into pieces, littering the floor and Sara. 
 
 
Well, I've been afraid of changing 'cause I built my life around you
But time makes you bolder
Children get older
I'm getting older too
Well...
 
Nick hung up his phone and rushed toward the front door, grabbing his keys on the way
 out. Luckily for him, Bill was only a few blocks away.
 
~~*~~
 
Sara shrieked as she felt Bill's hands clasp around her upper arms. "Listen Bill, we need
 to talk about this."
 
"You lying little slut. You had someone else on the side."
 
Sara stared at him. "I did not! Nick is just a friend and co-worker. You should know
 that."
 
"Then why did you call him to your rescue?"
 
"Because he lives the closest to here." Sara said matter-of-factly. 
 
Bill sneered again. "Come on, we're having this out." He half dragged her, half pulled
 her to the living room. Tossing her like a rag doll onto the couch, he landed on top of
 her. 
 
Sara started sobbing. Oh God, oh God oh God… Nick, where are you?
 
~~~*~~~
 
Nick slammed on his brakes in front of Bill's house. Running toward the door, he
 reached for the knob. The door swung open, and the sounds of Sara's sobs echoed
 through the house. "Sara?" Nick cried. He ran for the living room. When he saw Bill and
 Sara on the couch, he sprang into action. "Get your filthy hands off her."
 
Bill swung up with rage as he turned around to the sound of Nick's voice. His fist connected with Nick's jaw, but Nick swung back almost immediately with his own.
 
Sara stared at them in shock. The sleeve on her shirt had ripped, and tears were streaming
 down her face. She winced as she heard Nick deliver another punch to Bill's face. "Nick,
 stop!" She pulled herself up and off the couch and toward Nick. "He's not worth ruining
 your career over. Don't let him do this to you."
 
Bill stared at the closeness between them through is bruised eyes. 
 
Nick turned to Sara. His hand cupped her cheek. "Are you okay, Sar?"
Sara nodded. "Thanks Nick. I don't know what I would have done if you hadn't…"
 
Nick just smiled and hugged her quickly. He wrapped an arm around her. "Come on, let's
get you home and then call a tow truck for you car."
 
"Don't think I won't press charges, Nicky boy."
 
Nick turned around, glaring. "I don't think that would be too wise, Billy boy. Sara has
 enough evidence against you to show that I acted in such a way to save her from you."
 
Bill glared at them one last time before they exited the house.
 
Well, I've been afraid of changing 'cause I built my life around you
But time makes you bolder
Children get older
I'm getting older, too
Well I'm getting older too
 
Nick glanced at Sara as they sat in his Tahoe on the way over to Sara's apartment. "Do
 you want to talk about it?" He asked softly. I can't believe she hid this from me.
 
Sara shook her head, and continued staring out the passenger side window. The next
 thing she knew, Nick was shutting the engine off. 
 
"Here we are."
 
Sara started to get out wordlessly, and began closing the door, when something seemed to
 stop her. "Nick, do you want to come inside? I don't feel like being along right now."
 
Nick smiled softly and took his keys out of the ignition. "Sure."
 
Sara opened the front door to her house. Dropping her coat on the chair, she motioned to
 Nick to have a seat on the sofa. "I'm going to get something to drink."
 
Nick nodded, and sat down. He waited for about 5 minutes and when he hadn't heard
 anything from Sara, he decided to get up and check on her. What he saw when he
 entered the kitchen was a vulnerable woman. Not the Sara he was used to. "Sara, are you okay?"
 
Sara looked up at Nick, from where she sat sobbing quietly on the cold tile of the kitchen.
 She shook her head.
 
That was all that Nick needed. He was next to her in a heartbeat. He wrapped his arms
 around her, pulling her to him. "Don't worry about anything Sara. I'm here for you."
 
So, take this love and take it down
Year and if you climb a mountain and ya turn around
And if you see my reflection in the snow-covered hills
Well the landslide brought me down
And if you see my reflection in the snow-covered hills
Well maybe
Well maybe
Well maybe the landslide will bring you down