Slightly Condoned

Disclaimer: Don't own anything.

Rating: R (later)

Pairing: Eric/OC, Speed/Calleigh

Summary: After the death of Janet Medrano (Body Count) Elisabeth Kaytlin is hired as the new ADA. Under the condoned guide of Horatio Caine's ex-wife, Mia Dayton, who also happens to be the DA for Miami, as her first assignment Kaytlin is forced to reopen a cold case, which also happens to be Eric Delko's first case with the Miami-Dade crime Lab.

Spoiler: Tinder Box, Body Count

A/N: I *need* to take a break from Cardboard Copy.and perhaps this is a feeble attempt for your entertainment, but I just need to write an Eric fic.he's so lovable.hope you like it. Note: direct mentions from episodes will be featured later.


Prologue: Fresh Coat Of Paint

Assistant District Attorney Elisabeth Kaytlin kicked the side of her "sorry excuse for a" car, and proceeded to saunter through the parking lot in the dead heat of midday Miami to the DA's Office located on the second floor of the town's City Hall.

Trying to avoid the small but significant cracks in the pavement with her heels she curled her fingers around the handle of the small diplomat placed at her side, and rushed up the stairs of the Grand Structure with her, condoning the echo that her shoes gave off as she tapped against each marble stair.

It was hot here.but Miami in June wasn't supposed to be any different, wasn't that why she'd escaped the death colds of New York City? To bask in this sunshine all year long.

" Like hell I did." she murmured to herself bemusedly and hoped she put on enough deodorant to cover up her imprudence.

As Elisabeth stepped into the air-conditioned confines of the government owned building she smiled as she could almost hear the words echoing out of her mother's mouth.

" You are much too vivacious, to resort to such a boring job. What does it do for you Elisa?"

Well, mother, she thought to herself as she waited for the elevator to descend to her floor, the normal high people usually get from drugs.I get in a courtroom.

Go figure.

Smiling, Elisabeth stepped into the moving box.and pressed 2.

Composing herself for the worst, she smoothed her hair down, and resisted the urge to moisten her lips, ruining the carefully applied makeup from that morning..

She stepped out of the elevator and followed the bulletin board instructions to the offices of the DA.

Mia Dayton.

She seemed nice enough when Elisabeth had spoken on the phone with her, the former Yale Graduate did a little digging of her own on Ms. Dayton and found out that the 38 year old North Dakota native had been married to a very respected police officer in the Criminal Investigation Division.

His name is Horatio Caine and he had plenty of overtime under his belt for the wonderful state of Florida.

Elisabeth never quite found out why the couple divorced six years into their marriage, but knew they had no children and currently Ms. Dayton was short staffed after the death of former ADA Janet Medrano.

That was another interest of Elisabeth.

But she had found little information describing the circumstances under which Ms. Medrano passed away, yet she knew two facts.

Firstly her death was tied to prison break in early May of that year and secondly in her short 3 years on the job, the woman convicted enough felons to assure Elisabeth that she was going to be a tough pair of shoes to fill.

Yet Elisabeth was determined and nothing would stand in her way, not even the perseverance of the dead.

Rounding two corners of the labyrinth type corridors she found herself at a dead end.with one door staring back at her.

The frosted Plexiglas prevented her from seeing the occupants inside but the smell of fresh paint indicated that the appearance of the office had been altered recently.

It was only then that she noticed the green paint coating the mahogany door.

Right underneath the writing: Mia Dayton DA, it read: Elisabeth Kaytlin ADA.

She traced the bold lettering with her fingertips, so deep in thought, that she didn't notice any other presence in the room until they spoke.

" You like? I was deathly scared that we spelled your name wrong."

Elisabeth spun around on her heel, trying to conceal her obvious surprise and a bit of embarrassment by turning on what her younger brother Dane used to call, " the blind charm". because more often than not when his older sister wanted something she'd turn on her charm.and it would blind judgment.

" No, actually it's correct." She smiled toothily as she studied the woman.

It finally dawned on her that this petite brunette was her new boss.

Elisabeth tried not to gawk at the diminutive stature of this woman, who she had actually anticipated to be at least three inches taller than her, more intimidating and awkward.

This was not the case at all.

In front of Elisabeth stood a woman with brown hair, which she wore in pin straight tendrils framing her delicate face, mirrored by hazel eyes and clothed in a three-piece brown suit. She stood barely 5'4 in heels.

This was not at all what Elisabeth had been expecting from the owner of that horridly intimidating voice she'd heard on the phone.

To say the least, she didn't know whether she should've been relieved or more afraid.that in such a condensed package, this woman held such sharp demeanor.

" I'm glad." The DA replied and Elisabeth watched her new boss swiftly bypass her and into the coated door, which she assumed, was Ms. Dayton's office.

Elisabeth wasn't sure if she should follow her or not, and decided to go for it, walking into the cool office and closing the door behind her.

It was only later when she assessed her surroundings that she understood where she was, and what job she had taken on.

She was the fucking Assistant to a District Attorney who had ten+ years on the job and held this office with pride.and at that moment as she looked at the small door in the corner of Mia's Office and saw her name written again in larger letters her heart caught in her throat and she wanted to scream with joy.

She finally made it.yes.

It was a simple moment like that that drove her to the euphoric edge and made her forget everything bad that had ever happened to her, and all the doubts she held inside her.

Everything, all of that escaped her mind and even as Mia woke her up from her thoughts Elisabeth couldn't get over it.

" This will be your office." The woman smiled at her again, this time tight lipped however and Elisabeth could sense that she was preoccupied with something.

" Thank you it looks great." Elisabeth supplied quickly.

Mia looked at her through the thin-rimmed reading glasses she had put on and smiled almost piteously, " You haven't even looked at it yet, but don't be shy."

" I'm not, perhaps all the heat has gone to my head." Elisabeth smirked and walked to the door.

" Ah yes, you Yankees know nothing about Miami Summers." Mia nodded and Elisabeth murmured to herself, unaware that the DA heard her, " Let's hope I never find out."

Mia snorted and, unknown to Elisabeth, picked up a cardboard box filled with files, as she pushed herself into the ADA's new office.

Elisabeth meanwhile stood in awe of her humble but to her astounding surroundings.

Her office was lined with a full wall window and two fake plants that stood taller than Mia.

A managerial desk, and a chair, a metal filing cabinet and four easy chairs lining the two free walls of the rectangular room.

" Everything is to your liking I hope?" Mia wondered and Elisabeth thought for just a few seconds if her new boss had moved any furniture since the death of her former employee.

Everything looked new, so Elisabeth assumed - yes.

But who knew.

Nodding, she smiled, " Of course, I honestly don't think you can do any wrong by me." She set her attaché case on the naked surface of the desk and felt the smoothness of the wood welcomingly.

" Good." Mia nodded, her smile fading and Elisabeth suddenly remembered what her boss had said at the end of their last phone call.

[" Now you understand that I can't just plunge you straight into a case just yet.but I've got something else for you to do. Think of it as a trial run."]

Elisabeth had been so excited about the aspect of working in this very office that she'd forgotten all about this 'trial run' that Mia had for her.

Now it resurfaced with her memory and she had nothing else to do but nod.

Yet as she already suspected nothing could get passed this small ball of energy.Mia laughed, " Oh don't look so nervous child, your leaving me no choice but to think of my first time in this office, and that was too long ago, when I didn't need Botox injections."

Elisabeth let out a low chuckle, " Well, if it's any consolation, they're working. You look better than me."

" Oh please." Mia set the cardboard box by Elisabeth's purse and smirked.

" All those gorgeous auburn curls, and ballerina stature, I'd say men flock to you like bees on honey." Mia kidded but Elisabeth seemed agape.

" How did you know?" she asked, touching base with her dancing background.

" Oh, I have my ways." Mia winked and turned to tap the box atop the desk.

Elisabeth studied one of the plants again with interest and the DA took a breath.

" All right, let's get to work."

" Thought you'd never say that." Elisabeth nodded, and Mia motioned her to sit down.

She was about to take one of the easy chairs, but Mia stopped her, " This is your office Elisabeth, and you rightfully belong on the other side of the desk."

Mia motioned her to sit on the rotating chair between the window and the counter, while her boss pulled up the stool Elisabeth discarded and the two women sat over the box.

" Like I said over the phone." Mia took the top off the box, Elisabeth nodded her along, " I am working a huge case right now, and as much as I would like your help it's the middle of the trial and I can't do that."

" I understand."

" Good.that's why I am opening this door for you. This isn't a test, but it's something I've been putting off for a while now." Mia spoke deliberately slow, and Elisabeth just knew she wanted to mention Janet, but didn't for obvious reasons.

She placed the first file out of many in front of Elisabeth on the empty desktop and she couldn't help but wonder that it wouldn't be bare for long.

" Cold case?" Elisabeth read off the very bold lettering on the folder cover.

" This is the deal." Mia folded her fingers over the desk edge and began what Elisabeth premeditated to be a long story.

She didn't interrupt, but motioned for her to continue.

" Miami Dade might seem to you as a very small town.and it is, compared to New York City anyway. But we run a tight ship here, and the condensation of criminals in such a small community doesn't allow us- the good guys to rest.

One of my good friends Mercedes Escalante is coming up for reelection as Council Woman. Her situation is dire however, her husband is being tried for murder, and she needs this to be cleared up as well."

" I'm listening." Elisabeth okayed.

" Good." Mia nodded and opened another file from inside 'the box'.

" December 29th 2001. Council Woman Escalante and her, at that moment, free husband, Lorenzo are eating dinner at Café Mono. At around 9:35pm, they are approached by a woman, who is later identified as Amber Gale." Mia looked up at Elisabeth from the file and then continued to read.

" 'She seemed normal at first, I had thought she was going to ask me for a photograph.' Quoted Escalante, ' but when her staggering speech got incoherent my husband and I exchanged looks of worry and before I knew it she'd collapsed right into the bread basket." Mia concluded, and flipped the page.

Elisabeth took that moment to put her two cents in, " Spoken like a true politician." She couldn't help but add, and received a stern but fair glance from Mia as she continued reading.

" 22 year old Amber Gale died from snake poisoning, which was later determined to have been added to her food. The problem was, the quantity of the food consumed was grave, but the snake poison intake was minimal, the paradox of the situation was that if she had sensed something was wrong a little earlier, she would've been able to be cured.

Gale spent the evening at home, with no witnesses to provide concrete proof of what she ate and where the produce came from, the CSIs had a dead end, until one witness at a near by table, during the Gale/Escalante exchange, alleged that he had heard the dying woman whisper, " you did this to me."

The witness's statement wasn't credible but remained as thorn in our government's side, because it was one of the less fortunate cold cases."

Mia concluded and sat the history aside.

" I bet your wondering why I'm telling all of this to you huh?" Mia raised her eyebrow accordingly.

" Yes, I'd be inclined to ask." Elisabeth nodded, folding her arms.

" Like I said earlier Mercedes is a dear friend and with reelection coming up and her husband already on trial for murder, she can't afford for this to go public as well."

" So you want me to research this again?" Elisabeth asked incredulously, hoping and praying that that wasn't the case.

Mia was more than hesitant to reply, " Well eyes, but." she held her hand up to signal that she would remain fair.

" But what? I'm not an investigator." Elisabeth exclaimed out of character and Mia concurred, " I know your not, and that's why I'm setting you up with a team of the best investigators that we have to offer."

" Like the ones that couldn't crack this two years ago? C'mon Mia, this is.I'm sorry but the operative word would be stupid." Elisabeth slid the file away from her and Mia hardened.

" Listen Elisabeth, I understand this is not what you came for, but I am your boss, and am instructing you to do this. End of story."

" Fine. I apologize, I guess I just don't have too much faith in myself." Elisabeth admitted sheepishly and Mia softened again.

" Don't worry, it'll be good practice." She assured lightheartedly and Elisabeth hesitantly took the file back.

" So." She inhaled, " Who am I gonna be working with?" She asked with mild curiosity and Mia smiled.

" Like I said the best." She smirked, and Elisabeth looked for more explanation wordlessly.

" The same people who put Lorenzo Escalante away for murder." Mia said and took out three profiles.

" And who might that be?" Elisabeth asked with growing interest.

Mia frowned just a little unnoticeably, and replied shortly, " My ex- husband's colleagues, minus him of course.for uh, personal reasons, don't ask." Mia rolled her eyes.

" Wasn't gonna." Elisabeth opened the first file and read the name.

" Timothy Speedle. CSI Rank 3 Detective. Trace Expert, Columbia Graduate." Elisabeth raised her eyebrow and flipped to the next page, " Calleigh Duquesne, Ballistics Expert, transferred from the New Orleans Crime Lab in January of 2000."

" Jesus, you've got everything on these people." Elisabeth exclaimed slightly in disbelief that it took her a month to dig up dirt on Horatio Caine, and here, she had his protégées' biographies within her grasp.

" They are the best." Mia shrugged and waited until Elisabeth finished studying the final page, " Eric Delko.Cuban born.hired at Miami-Dade Crime Lab in late December of 2001."

She stopped and looked questioningly at Mia, " Don't tell me the Gale case was his first."

She dropped the file on the desk without question and frowned, supporting her chin with her elbows.

Mia didn't respond the way Elisabeth had anticipated and instead looked at her watch.

" I made you an appointment at the Crime Lab at 2 pm, would you like to grab lunch before that?" She asked, running a hand through her chestnut hair.

" Of course, after reading about snake poisoning the first thing that comes to mind is food," Elisabeth exclaimed sarcastically and Mia smirked.

" See, I like you already."