A/N: So... as it turns out, I cannot read! this is not the final chapter! However, I will be posting it next. And that will be tonight! Please read, enjoy and review!
Liz woke the next morning to an empty bed. She rolled to look at her bedside table and saw a small piece of folded paper there. She propped herself up onto her elbows and read it, a smile spreading across her face.
Had to leave for work, I'll be home as soon as I can be. I didn't want to wake you. Help yourself to whatever you want.
I promise, when you can walk, I am taking you on a proper date.
She threw the covers back and climbed out of bed, making her way to the bathroom. She carried her pyjamas out of the bedroom with her. She slipped into them in the bathroom before heading to the kitchen. She saw another note on the kitchen side and smiled again as she slowly made her way to it.
Coffee machine has water and coffee in, just needs turning on.
She smiled as she pushed the button and the water began to heat up. Once it was ready, Liz grabbed a mug and headed over to the sofa and placed it down. She shivered slightly at the fresh air and looked around. Ressler's apartment was minimalist. She couldn't see any blankets or the thermostat. She headed back to the bedroom and opened one of Ressler's draws, she pulled one of his sweatshirts over her head. The hem fell at her mid thigh, with the bottom of her shorts peaking out underneath. She inhaled the scent on the sweatshirt and smiled again. She left the room and headed back to the sofa. She sat down and raised her leg. She couldn't wait until this cast was off and she could walk with ease again.
After a few hours, boredom set in. She was thankful for a knock at the door. She hobbled over to it and looked through the peephole. She sighed and pulled the door open to Red and Dembe. "Lizzie, how are you doing."
"Red. Dembe. Please come in." She stepped aside as they enter Red the room. "Much better than last time I saw you." Red smiled at her as she spoke. Dembe remained just inside the door as Red and Liz headed to the sofa. "Would you like a drink or anything?"
"No thank you Lizzie. Just thought we'd pop by and see how your first day alone since leaving the hospital was going."
"If I'm honest, it's getting kind of boring now. I can't go outside and there's only so much to do inside." They both chuckled and sat down. "Thank you, by the way. For the hamper."
"Lizzie you don't need to thank me." Red smiled sweetly back to her. The next few hours followed easily and soon Red left. Liz was once again alone in Ressler's apartment. She laid back on the sofa and started at the blank tv. Red visiting was a god send. She didn't realise how long had passed in his company. She had lost track of all time through the day. It wasn't until her stomach rumbled she thought about food. With a loud sigh, she climbed off the sofa and headed to the kitchen. She didn't hear the door to the apartment open and close as she walked around the kitchen.
Ressler headed towards the bedroom to try and find her, but stopped when he saw her wandering around the kitchen. He watched her move around until she stilled looking into a cupboard. He silently walked in behind her, and wrapped his arms around her midsection. He placed a kiss against the joint of her jaw, before resting his chin on her shoulder. "You ok?" He asked softly as she leaned into his embrace. She nodded her head lightly against his strong shoulder. She turned to face him, wrapping her arms around him too, she placed her head against his chest. He held her there, running gentle fingers through her hair, and placed a soft kiss to her temple.
After a few moments, Liz leaned back and looked at him in the suit, remember how he was unable to do the buttons only a few days ago. She gently lifted his tie into her fingers. "How did you manage to do this?" She trailed her fingers along his buttons as she spoke.
"Last time I tried, I had a full cast on, not this splint thing. It's a lot easier now." He dipped his head lightly and met her lips with his in a tender and light kiss. "Are you hungry?" He asked as he stood up properly. She nodded lightly and kissed him again. "What's up?"
She kept her hands attached to him and stayed close to him. "It was a long day, being her alone and inside. I don't know I'm being stupid."
"Hey." He raised her chin so their eyes could meet. "It's not stupid to be bored after a day inside alone."
"Red came over for a few hours."
"Ok, it's not stupid to be bored after spending most of a day inside alone. You wore that while Red was here?" She nodded lightly. "It looks good on you." He smirked to her. "How about, I go change quickly, and then I'll cook us some food?"
"Sounds good." She kissed him again before letting go of him. He backed out of the kitchen and headed to the bathroom, by the time he had finished in the bathroom, Liz was sat on the edge of the bed. She smiled lightly at him as he walked to his drawer and pulled out some sweats and a plain top. He quickly discarded his suit threw them on. He reached for her hand and pulled her up before leading her back to the kitchen. They spoke easily as he prepared them some dinner. When they sat down at the table Liz switched to conversation. "How was work?"
"It was good. Weird without you there but it was good. Lots of paperwork."
"I can't wait to go back. I feel like I've not been there in forever."
"How about, when we go to get your cast off, we swing by the post office first? I'm sure they'd love to see you again." Liz smiled and nodded in response. She couldn't wait to get this cast off her leg.
2 weeks later
Liz and Ressler woke to his alarm, Liz smiled to herself. Today is the day she got the cast off. She climbed out of bed and to the pile of clean laundry she kept near her bags. She pulled out a pair of loose thigh length pink shorts and a slim fitting black top. She pulled the clothes on over her leg with ease now. Ressler couldn't help but smile at her excitement. He headed out of the room and made some coffee and toast for the two of them. His smile broadened as he saw her swing into the kitchen on her crutches. He walked over to her and placed a quick kiss to her lips, before handing her a coffee. He knew that today was the day he had been waiting for. Today he was going to take Elizabeth Keen out for the date of a lifetime.
Before long they had finished their breakfast and Liz was being carried downstairs. They headed straight to his car. Liz sat and watched him as he drove to work. She smiled as she watched him, as she had always done. "You need to get out of that habit Liz." He flicked his glance over to her briefly.
"What do you mean?"
"Watching me drive. It's distracting."
"I don't mean to distract you."
"I'm not complaining. But when you come back to work we'll need to stay focused. Not watch each other." He smirked at her and she smirked back. They fell in to a comfortable silence. Before long Ressler pulled in to his spot in the garage. "Ready?" Liz nodded enthusiastically and hopped out of the car. Ressler moved to the back of the car and pulled the crutches out, walking round to meet her. The two headed to the yellow lift. "By the way, no one knows you're coming in today." Ressler said as the doors slide closed in front of them. He placed his hand on the small of her back and a gentle kiss to her temple.
The doors opened into the war room and Ressler nudged keen slightly to start her moving the sound of her crutches seemed to echo in the box. She headed to the centre of the room. Aram and Samar were at Aram's desk looking at his screen. Ressler strode in front of her a few paces and cleared his throat. The two other agents seemed to either ignore the sound or they were too engrossed in their conversation.
"What's a girl got to do around here to get some here to get some attention?" She chuckled at the instant head movements of her friends. They rose from their seats and headed over to Liz.
"Agent Keen! You're back!" Aram smiled as he reached her. He hesitated slightly, Liz moved one of her crutches into the other hand and extended her arm out, he instantly stepped to her, wrapping his arms around her. "It's so good to see you." He spoke softly to her. And she squeezed him tighter in response. Once he stepped back, his body was immediately replaced with Samar's. The two women shared a brief hug before she stepped back.
"How have you guys been?"
"Bored." Samar smirked. "How about you. How are you feeling?"
"Tired and bored." She laughed lightly back. "I cannot wait to get this thing off." Liz continued as she swung her casted leg out in the space in front of her. All the agents laughed in response.
They chatted easily for the next hour before Ressler spotted the clock. "Ah. Sorry to break up the party. But Liz, we need to head off." She nodded quickly and hoped up from her seat. They headed back down to the car and Ressler started the engine before glancing quickly in her direction. "You good?" He waited until her saw her nod before pulling out of the parking spot. There was a slight tension in the air between them as he drove. "Liz, what's wrong?" She rolled her head along the seat and looked at him.
"I – I just." Liz dropped her hands, unable to find the words she needed. "I want things to go back to normal."
"Normal. As in before this?" Ressler looked quickly over to her, a small amount of panic began to rise in his stomach.
"No! No, definitely not. I want things to go to our new normal." She sighed and dropped her head against the seat.
"I really want to go to work, and go outside without having to be carried." Ressler chuckled at her honest response as he pulled into an empty space in the car park of the hospital.
"That's closer than you think." They exited the vehicle and headed to the entrance.
An hour later later they left the hospital and climbed back into the car. "I'm exhausted. Can we get pizza for dinner tonight?" Ressler smirked and glanced at her.
"I had something else in mind for tonight. But you'll have time for an hour or so nap when we get home?"
The trip from the hospitals to Ressler's was brief and comfortable. They headed into his apartment and across to the sofa. Ressler sat at the far end and Liz sat next to him, resting her head against his shoulder. He wrapped his arm around her and held her against him. She easily drifted off to sleep. He slowly brushed his hand across her hair and and placed a light kiss to her head. He stayed still and silent and let Liz sleep against him for a while. Before he knew it, he too had fallen asleep, but managed to wake up after only half an hour. He squeezed Liz's arm again and gently shook her. He placed another kiss to her head as he spoke. "Hey. Hey Liz. Time to wake up now." She murmured something non responsive and nestled closer into him. "No, no, no. Come on Liz. Wake up time." She grumbled and sat up. "Shower?" She grunted and looked at him through half opened eyes. "Water, soap, clean?" She nodded and rose from the sofa heading to the bedroom. He smiled then realised she had gone to the bedroom and not the bathroom. He laughed and jumped up following her. He got to her before she collapsed on the bed. He grabbed her shoulders from behind and steered her towards the bathroom. He turned the shower on and allowed it to heat up. He looked over at the still half asleep Liz in front of him and smiled. He stepped in front of her and placed his hands on her waist, she wrapped her own around him and lent her head against his chest. "Come on Liz. Clothes off." She lent back and looked him in the eye. A smirk landed on her lips as she reached around and grabbed onto his tie, pulling it and covering his lips with hers. He savoured the kiss briefly before pulling back. "Not like that. Come on. Strip off and get in." He finished speaking, placed a brief kiss to her lips and exited the room.
He heard her move around in the shower as he rooted through his drawers. He cleared two of his draws out for her and started unpacking one of her bags, he noticed some of the clothes as being from the 'red bag' he pulled out a dress which Liz hadn't worn while they were undercover. He laid it out on the bed and picked up a notepad. He scribbled something down, grabbed his new suit and headed out of the bedroom. He smiled to himself as he hung his suit over the back of a chair and headed to his fridge. He pulled out a small bottle of white wine and a glass and placed them on the bedside table. He left the room and his round the corner as Liz made her way from the bathroom to the bedroom. He quickly slipped in to the bathroom and showered himself. Once he was dried off and dressed he quickly checked the time and saw it was 6:15. Perfect. He had just the right amount of time. He quietly slipped out of the apartment and out of the building.