Nightmare By Gabby Castillo

Authors note: I was lying in bed when I thought this up. It's a WiP, so bare with me everyone!!

Spoilers: Playing with fire, maybe more later.

Disclaimer: Not mine, how sad! Not mine, too bad! Wish they were, poor me! Maybe someday, we'll see!! (Sorry, so tired!!)

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The halls were empty. The lights flickered and dimmed before bursting into a bright array of sparks and glass. The once spotless linoleum was now littered with charred paper, twisted metal, broken glass and melted plastic. In one part of the hallway two small pools of blood sat drying, silent testimony to what had happened in the building.

Gil Grissom walked through the silent hallways, studying the damage around him. He stopped at the blood, staring down at it with curious eyes. He felt his blood begin to boil as he squatted in front of the smaller pool. His hand hovered over it, but he curled his outstretched fingers into his palm before he could touch it. He brought his hand to his chin instead.

That was her blood. Her body had been thrown to this spot after the blast. She had lain among the rubble and the fire, her life draining slowly from her body. Waiting for someone, anyone, to help. Had she cried? Had she called for help? Grissom felt so helpless, he should have been able to get to her, to help her.

For the first time in a long time, Grissom wanted to cry.

Instead, he got to his feet and walked out of the building. He searched the crowd for Sara, hoping to see her among the other CSI's or getting stitches in the back of an ambulance. He was hoping against hope that her injuries weren't as bad as the paramedics initially thought.

A hand touched Grissom's shoulder. He spun around, expecting to see Sara smiling weakly behind him, but he met Catherine's misty stare instead. She wiped quickly at her eyes, then opened her mouth to speak. Before she could say anything, Grissom was backing away, shaking his head. He stopped her.

"I don't want to hear it," he said harshly, " She's ok, Cath, so don't you even say it!"

He turned to walk away, but she grabbed his shoulder and turned him back towards her. She held his shoulders tight, holding him in place. Her eyes said it all.

"Gil, listen to me, ok? This is just as hard for me as it is for you. They… they pronounce her five minutes ago… while you were inside. The paramedics…"

Tears were falling down her cheeks, and she kept talking, but Grissom didn't hear anything. Grissom felt dizzy. Slowly he sank to his knees. He kneeled on the ground, his ears deaf to his own cries of anguish. He didn't see the paramedics rushing toward him, because all he could see was the blackness engulfing him as he fell forward to the cool pavement and let himself slip away…

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Grissom woke with a start. He bolted forward, the blanket that had been loosely covering him falling to the floor next to him. Beads of sweat rolled down his burning face. He looked around the room before letting out a choked sob. Wiping at the salty tears, he leaned his head against the back of his couch and sighed.

It was the third day the nightmare had haunted him. A vision of what could have happened the day the lab exploded. He could have lost her. She could have died. But he was given a second chance with her, and he had thrown that away. And now… he was close to losing her again.

Rubbing his eyes, he pushed himself off the couch. He glanced at the clock on his VCR. 7:00. He had two hours before shift. Plenty of time.

He gradually made his way to the bathroom and turned on the shower. Lazily, he undressed, then stepped under the scalding spray.

He soaked his head and lathered it with shampoo. He closed his eyes, but opened them quickly. His nightmare tormented him even in his waking hours. Behind his eyelids he saw her drained and flaccid body; once soft skin was torn and battered. Her face that once held the color of life was now toneless, her eyes blank. Grissom shook his head, pushing the image to the back of his mind, then rinsed out his hair and finished his shower.

Before long he stepped out, grabbing a towel and drying his tired body. He wrapped it around his waist, then moved over to the sink.

He grimaced at his weary reflection. Haggard eyes, pale skin, more gray hairs then he remembered having the day before. He looked miserable. Shaking his head, Grissom looked away, grabbing for his toothbrush and finishing up in the bathroom.

He walked to his room, taking time to remember the nightmare. Most of it had happened that day. He had walked through the hallway, had seen the blood, had gone outside searching for Sara.

But he had found her then. Sitting on a curb, looking into space. She had been in shock, she needed stitches, but she had wanted to get to work processing the scene. And he had wanted to pull her into his arms and never let go. He settled for holding her hands, though, and even let the word 'honey' slip out. He was such a fool.

Why in his nightmare, then, did she die? And why was he having this nightmare now, after almost a year after the whole thing happened? Suddenly, it struck him.

'Because she's just as lost to you now as she would be if she had died that day,' he thought.

He pondered that a moment before getting dressed. As he did, he made a promise.

'Things are going to change,' he thought, 'it might take awhile, but they will.'

And with that he grabbed his keys and headed out the door. He planned on driving around before shift, formulating a plan of action. He was going to win Sara back.

Little did he know just how much things were about to change.