Interlude 4: In which Lindsey sets Catherine straight
PhDelicious

Disclaimer: The only thing I claim is the order in which the following words have been written.

A/N: So it's been a while since I wrote a CSI fic, but this has been rattling around in the back of my mind since 'Weeping Willows' first aired. Something about the way Catherine was interacting with everyone, especially her family really irked me. So here it is. And I plan on leaving it as a one shot unless there's high demand for more.


Catherine

The past couple of days hadn't been easy on Catherine Willows. Her guys had bailed on their night out. The guy who she'd allowed to pick her up at the bar had turned out to be a real sketch-ball and even a murder suspect. She still couldn't believe he'd had the nerve to go to her house and threaten her family.

Bastard! Did he really think I would just let him walk over me? As if his nasty insinuations could actually get me in trouble…though apparently they got to Grissom. Who am I kidding? He played on my guilt and Grissom caught it. The fact that Gil no longer trusts me is my own fault. How can he be so dense and so observant at the same time?

Catherine slammed her coffee mug onto her desk and pushed back, rising agitatedly. She checked the clock. Her shift had ended 10 minutes ago. Catherine sighed, gathered her coat, and headed out of CSI.

And I still have to talk to Lindsey.


The drive home had been uneventful and for once Catherine arrived to find both her mother and her daughter awake and watching television. Lindsey sullenly ignored Catherine when she walked in.

"Thanks Mom."

"You're welcome Cathy, but we really need to talk about this soon."

"I know Mom. Could we do this tomorrow before I leave for work? Right now I'd like to talk with Lindsey."

"Fine…fine. I'll go turn in. 'Night."

Catherine watched as her mom kissed Lindsey goodnight and headed down the hall way towards the guest room she occupied with increasing frequency. Catherine turned her attention back to her daughter who continued to stare blankly at the TV.

"Lindsey?"

There was no response. Catherine sighed.

It's going to be a long evening.

Catherine reached down and shut off the television, earning a glare from her daughter.

"We need to talk. You will listen even if you don't want to talk."

Lindsey sighed and rolled her eyes in the manner of rebellious youth everywhere.

"Why were you outside talking to that man yesterday? And why didn't you listen to me when I told you to go inside?"

Catherine paused. When there was no answer from Lindsey she continued.

"Damn it Lindsey! That man was dangerous. He was a suspect in the case I was working. He could have hurt you."

"Yeah, but he didn't. The only thing that happened is that you made a fool out of yourself again."

"Excuse me!"

"Do you think I'm deaf as well as stupid? I heard him. You screwed around with him and it came back to bite you in the ass. You have no one to blame for this but yourself. I can't believe you actually expect me to listen to you these days. You're never home before I'm asleep. You go out and pick up scumbags like this guy. Maybe I should just go live with Grandma."

Catherine's jaw hung open in shock.

And there goes control of this conversation…

"What do you think you're playing at young lady? You are grounded…for a week. You know better than to curse in front of me. You know my job is important. Criminals don't exactly consult us as to when we'd like them to commit a crime."

"As if you solve every crime yourself. Honestly! Besides it's not the job I have a problem with. You know like the guys. I'd have so much more respect for you if you weren't always picking up these losers. You have awful taste in men."

"I don't know what you're talking about…but this is not about me."

"Yes, it is… because if you had better taste last night wouldn't have happened. How can you keep making the same mistake over and over?"

"And what mistake is that?"

"You keep dating lowlifes."

"Lindsey…"

Catherine practically growled at her daughter.

"Explain yourself."

"You go out late at night to trashy bars where you probably stand out as one of the oldest, most desperate women in the place. You allow these men to pick you up. Or you let some guy you meet on an investigation sweet talk you. You go out on a date or two with them, probably sleep with them, and then drop them when you realize they've cheated on you or lied to you or something. Did you think I didn't know just because you never bring them home? I hear you talking to Grandma. I bet you never even tell most of them that I exist….I really wish you'd just stop."

"Lind-sey"

Catherine sighed.

"Mom…how come you never dated Rick?"

"Rick?"

"Yeah, Warrick…you know…fantastic eyes, ripped body, heart of gold. Did you think I haven't noticed?"

"Noticed what?"

"That you two dig each other. So…"

"It's not that simple. First, I'm not so sure about that. Second, I'm his boss."

"Take a chance Mom. He's always liked spending time with me. He knows all about your first job and he still respects you. He's been around for all your mistakes and he's still here. And he's knows enough about your history with Dad to let you make your own decisions."

"I can't just…"

"No, Mom, what you can't just do is leave him hanging forever."

Lindsey held up a hand, forestalling Catherine's next comment.

"I know we need to make some changes around here. We'll talk about it after you talk to Grandma. I am old enough to be left alone sometimes you know. Good night."

Lindsey lifted herself from the couch and headed down the hall. She threw one parting comment over her shoulder before heading into her room.

"Talk to Warrick, before it's too late."

When did my daughter become my conscience? Crap!

Catherine ran a hand through her hair in frustration and followed her daughter to bed.

The end…at least for today.