Jordan didn't remember exactly when it happened, but she did remember when she got tired of it – the fighting, the double entendres, the teasing that would sometimes take on a harder edge than he intended it to take.

She leaned forward at her desk, closed her eyes, and rested her head in her hands, her thumb and forefinger massaging her temples at an ill-fated attempt to fight off a headache.

"You okay?" Garrett asked from her door.

Jordan leaned back in her chair and looked at her boss. "Yeah, just a little tired. It was a busy weekend."

"A certain detective wouldn't have anything to do with this, would he?" Garret teased.

"No, not a thing," she said, smiling weakly back at Garret.

Garrett grinned at her and walked back into his office. Jordan returned to massaging her temples. "If he only knew," Jordan thought to herself.

Her phone rang. It was Woody. "Meet tonight at the Pogue?" he asked. "I need to talk with you."

"Ummm, okay. I've got some work to finish up with here. Would seven be okay?"

"Yeah, sounds good."

When Jordan arrived, Woody was already there, talking excitedly with Max. "Something's up," she thought to herself. "Hi Dad, Hi Woody."

Max hugged his daughter. "Woody's gotten some good news to tell you about, Jordan. Why don't you two go up and grab a table. I'll send some beers up."

They settled into the back table where they could talk without interruption and the beers quickly followed.

"So what's up?" Jordan asked

"I've been promoted."

"Woody! That's great! I'm so happy for you," Jordan exclaimed, genuinely glad that he had finally been recognized for all his hard work at the force.

"It may not be so good when I tell you what it involves. It means undercover work for possibly months at a time. It's exciting, because it's what I've always wanted to do. But it also means that for maybe long periods of time, I have to cut myself off from everything."

Jordan was silent and kept her eyes on her beer. Finally, she regained her ability to speak. "It's great that you're finally going to be able to do what you've always wanted to do," she said, striving to keep her voice from faltering.

"But what about the possibility of not being able to see you for weeks at a time?" Woody asked.

Jordan sighed and chose her words carefully, for once in her life. She would miss Woody, but she knew she could not stand in the way of something he had obviously wanted for a long time. "I'm sure we'll survive. What's important is that you've got the opportunity to do something you've worked hard for."

Woody looked carefully at her. Jordan's face was unreadable. "Fine, I guess that means that everything we've been through doesn't matter to you or that you even care." With that he abruptly stood up and left the bar, leaving Jordan feeling more alone than ever. Slowly she traced over the label on her beer bottle with her finger and sighed again. Maybe it was for the best. Maybe, with him being gone awhile she could re-grow some of her thick skin.

She got up from the table and made to exit the bar.

"What's up Jor? Why did Woody leave like that?" Max asked.

"I think he's upset with me...again. I didn't react like he thought I would when he told me he got the promotion."

"Undercover work is a hard job, but it's a good one for young cops like him. Did you tell him you would miss him too much for him to be gone too long?"

"No. I told him just the opposite. That I was glad for him and that I'd be okay."

"Maybe that's not what he wanted to hear."

"No, but it's what he needed to hear. I won't stand in his way of a better position or a job he has always wanted. He'd end up hating me for it."

Max looked at his daughter. The slumped shoulders told him everything. She was going to miss Woody more than she even let on to herself. "Go home and get some rest."

"I am, Dad. Good night."

"Night baby girl."

Jordan went back to her apartment and got ready for bed. She stood looking out her window for a long time. This was going to be one of the most difficult things she had done, letting go of Woody like this. For the past several years they had worked closely together, and if the truth be known, she depended on him more than she would admit to anyone, especially herself. He had let his feelings be made known about her early on, and for a while had been content to follow her around like a puppy, understanding that Jordan needed time to build trust and even longer to possibly fall in love with him. But after the Malden case, things had changed. He had gotten edgier around her, sometimes even seemingly trying to goad her into making a decision. It was if he had to know one way or another about where their relationship was heading then – he couldn't wait any longer.

And she knew she was falling for him. Oh, hell, fell for him quite a while ago. She just didn't know how to tell him. Or when to tell him. For about the time that her head realized what her heart was telling her, his teasing started taking on a more virulent form. At first, it didn't bother her so much, but gradually it wore on her emotions to the point she wondered if he still cared at all. Sometimes, he would pull away abruptly after a dance and leave her standing on the floor alone. At other times, his typical good night kiss was just a brush of his lips against hers. She had taken her wall down to allow him in her heart, but now he resisted coming in, leaving her feeling deserted and vulnerable. She longed for his touch, but often held her breath around him, wondering what else he may say to make her flinch.

Jordan sighed and turned away from the window. She had half-expected Woody to call, but he didn't. Slowly she climbed into bed. It was going to be a long night and an even longer week.
"Okay, I can get through this. This not officially a break up, it's just a changing in the relationship," Jordan told herself as the sun broke through the sky Tuesday morning, befuddling the funk she was in last night. Feeling somewhat better, she got ready for work and strode into the morgue on time.

"I guess you heard about Woody's promotion?" Lily said as Jordan stopped to get her messages.

"Yeah, he told me last night."

"Did he tell you that he starts Monday?"

"No....he wasn't sure last night," fibbed Jordan, making a hasty retreat for her office. She closed the door and leaned on it. Monday. Six days. Less than a week. One hundred forty-four hours. She hadn't expected it to be that soon. Damn. She wasn't sure what her reaction was. Anger? Hurt? Relief? Disbelief? All of the above? Groaning, she ran her hands down her face. "I can get through this," she repeated. "I am strong. I am invincible. I am woman...."

A tap on her door brought her out of her thoughts. It was Nigel. "Have you heard about our Woody?" he asked.

Jordan looked at him as if he had grown a second head. "I guess so," Nigel said, backing out of her door.

"No stay. It's okay."

"I can understand, love, with the possibility of him being gone for weeks at a time, why you might feel a little puckish about the whole thing."

"It's not that, Nige. Honestly, it's not."

"You aren't feeling the least bit trifled about the love of your life being gone?"

"Oh, stop it. He's not the 'love of my life'."

"You could have fooled me."

"Well, evidently he doesn't feel the same way about me."

"You mean because he took the job?"

"No, because for the past six weeks he's done a damn good job of pushing me away."

Nigel contemplated Jordan carefully. "So he's pushed you away?"

"Let's just say he's made it really clear he no longer cares for me the way he possibly may have in the past."

"Has he said so directly?"

"In so many words."

"Hmmmm. And do you feel the same about him?"

Jordan looked down at her desk and toyed with her stapler, pushing it around in circles with her fingers. Nigel finally reached down and stopped her. "Do you?" he asked.

"No. I no longer think that I may want a relationship with him, I know I want one with him, but I won't stand in his way of this job."

"Have you told him?"

"No. I did tell him I was happy about his promotion."

"Jordan, I'd tell him. He's got a great, new job, but it's also a dangerous one. What if something happened to him and he never knew how you felt? You'd regret it. And he may need to hear it."

"Nigel, I don't know..."

"Give it some thought, love." And with that, Nigel wandered back into his office.

Soon work duties pushed any thoughts of Woody and their relationship out of Jordan's mind. Thankfully, it was a busy day and she didn't have much of a chance to contemplate their future until the weekly staff meeting late that afternoon. There, Dr. Macy announced Woody's promotion and passed around an invitation to a party that Woody was having to celebrate.

"It's on Saturday," Garrett said. "Just let him know if you can come."


Woody sat down on his couch and mentally ticked off the things he needed to do to get ready for Saturday night. He really didn't feel like doing anything right now. He loosened his tie and pressed the heels of his hands into his eyes. He should be joyful – over the top, at this new job. It was everything he ever wanted in police work, even the pay. But all he could think about now was Jordan's reaction.

He was happy that she had been glad for him, but disappointed she had not protested at the possibility of him being gone for weeks, even months, at a time. Lately, he knew he had been short with her, even cantankerous at times, but he was so tired of waiting on her to make up her mind. Maybe this was just what she needed. Time away from him in order to reach a decision, one way or the other. He just didn't know. He hadn't talked with her this week at all, other than receiving a voice mail from her to confirm she would be at the party and let her know if she could bring anything. "Yeah," he had thought to himself. "A month's worth of massage oil and some stuff from Victoria's Secret." But no way in hell was that going to happen, not before she admitted that she loved him.

Rising from the couch, he made his way to the bedroom and changed out of his suit and into jeans and a t-shirt. He began cleaning his apartment and making a grocery list for Saturday night. It was going to be a long week.