A/N: Thanks for all the reviews, guys! All you guys are great- so encouraging! I'm glad you guys are enjoying the story thus far! This is the last chapter, I hope you guys enjoy it!
Catherine took Sara out of the hospital the day she was released. She drove to her mother's house and picked Lindsey up and they all headed to a hotel to stay at while their homes were still crime-scenes. They drove along the Strip, looking at the flashing lights and signs coming from hotels and casinos.
"The Lucky Seven?" Catherine asked.
"Crime-scene.." Sara muttered from the front seat.
"The Monaco?" Catherine tried again.
"Crime-scene..." Sara muttered again.
"Crime-scene..." Sara muttered again.
"God!" Lindsey said. "Isn't there a place in Vegas that hasn't been a crime-scene?"
Sara laughed. "I don't think so," Sara told her. "You'd be surprised."
Catherine sighed. "Alright...well..there is one more option.."
"Oh? And what is that?" Sara asked.
"Dad.." Catherine muttered.
"Catherine," came the voice of Sam Braun- bad-ass casino and hotel owner, multi-billionaire of Vegas. He and Catherine had kind of gotten off to a rocky start...Catherine found out that he was really her father during a murder investigation. That didn't speak father-daughter love right there...though things had gotten a bit better from then on and they had a better relationship than before.
"Sam," Catherine acknowledged him. Sara and Lindsey hung out behind her, looking around the casino at both the drunk and sober who were running around.
"What brings you here?" he asked.
"Sam, I...need a favor of you," Catherine said.
"Sure.." Sam said.
Catherine sighed. "My...house is a crime-scene, something...something happened, to...a..friend," Catherine said, not wanting to mention Sara's name. "We need some place to stay until the investigation is finished," she told him. "We were hoping...that..since every other hotel in Vegas has been a crime-scene...that...you would let us have a room here for a little bit."
Sam nodded slowly. He looked down at Lindsey to Catherine and finally up at Sara. He saw the bruises around her neck and her arms and wrists...this had to be the friend Catherine was talking about. Something had definetly happened, that was for sure, but he wasn't going to stop and ask them a bunch of questions. Instead, with a smile, he asked, "How many rooms?"
Catherine sighed deeply in relief and then considered the question- did she want seperate rooms? No...she didn't think so, at least. She wanted to keep an eye on Lindsey, god-only-knew what her daughter would go around doing if she had her own room and room key, for that matter. She tried to get the image of her daughter dancing on a stage with a bunch of exotic dancers out of her mind. Lindsey wasn't her only concern. She wanted to keep an eye on Sara, and she knew that if she got her her own room that wouldn't be an option...
"One," Catherine said. "One of the larger rooms, if you could, Sam," she asked, her eyes almost pleading with him.
He smiled. "Give me ten minutes," he told her. "Take a seat somewhere, have a drink. I'll be back shortly with the room keys," he told her, walking off. Catherine sighed deeply, looking over at one of the tables.
"Let's take a seat," Catherine told both Lindsey and Sara. They just nodded and sat down at one of the tables, saving a place for Catherine. They all sat down, taking in the lights and the sounds of the casino, watching the people run around with their drinks and their buckets containing their winnings. Lindsey stood up on her seat, smiling as she saw something that caught her eye.
"Look, Mom!" she yelled, pointing to something a ways from them.
"Lindsey, sit down," Catherine said, getting up to put her back on the seat when she saw what her daughter was looking at. "Oh, Linds, please..."
"Look, Mom!" she said again. Now Sara had gotten up off of her seat to see what they were staring at. She giggled a little when she saw- a whole line of exotic dancers got on stage to begin a show. Lindsey found them absolutely mesmerizing as she started at their half-naked forms dancing all over the place.
"Lindsey.." Catherine said, rolling her eyes and putting her back in her seat. Lindsey frowned as she was put back down and they were soon all sitting back down.
"Mom, you didn't dress like that when you were a dancer?" she asked.
"No," Catherine said. "No, Mommy wore something a little cheaper to come by- it's called skin."
Sara laughed as she watched Lindsey roll her eyes at her mother's remark. Soon after the show was over and the line of dancers walked past them. Catherine slowly leaned over to Sara's ear and whispered, "Fifty bucks says those aren't real," Catherine told her, shooting a glance at one of the dancers whose breasts seemed to be abnormally large.
Sara giggled. "I bet they're not."
"What?" Lindsey asked. "What?" she asked again. "What? You think one of the dancers got a boob job? Of course they did, Mom! You did, didn't you?"
"NO!" Catherine yelled. "I did not, thank you very much!"
"Ah..." Lindsey said. She looked over at Sara. "She went for that all-natural theme."
"LINDSEY!" Catherine yelled. Sara just laughed as Sam Braun returned to the group with two room keys.
"Here's the keys," Sam said. Catherine quickly took them and threw one to Sara, keeping the other one in her purse.
"Why can't I have one?" Lindsey whined.
"So many reasons," Catherine mumbled. "Thank you, Sam," Catherine told him as they got up from their seats.
"It's not trouble, Catherine," Sam said. "Get some rest, all of you."
"We will," Catherine said. She waited until he had walked off and then said, "Let's go, shall we?" Sara and Lindsey only nodded as Catherine led them to the elevators. "Floor #...4?" Catherine said. "Wow...we must have a suite," she said as the elevator doors opened. She stepped inside and waited for Sara and Lindsey to follow until she pressed the number '4' button.
When the doors opened, they walked over to their room and opened the door. Lindsey shoved them out of the way quickly, jumping on one of the king-sized beds in the room. "This is my bed!" Lindsey yelled.
"Hey, I don't know about that, kiddo," Catherine said. "Sara should get her own bed," Catherine told her, grabbing her by her arm and pulling her off the bed.
Lindsey quickly turned to Sara. "You don't care if I have the bed, do you?"
Sara laughed. "Lindsey!" Catherine yelled.
"Fine.." Lindsey sighed, collapsing onto one of the beds and closing her eyes.
Sara smiled, looking around the room. "This is huge.." she observed. "And beautiful.." she said, walking through the room and looking into the bathroom- it was almost as large as her entire apartment and had a bath tub and shower, not to mention three white porcelain sinks with silver faucets.
Catherine sighed, sitting down on the bed. "It's Sam," she said with a small smile.
Sara smiled a little, sitting down on the bed across from the other. Looking down at the floor, Catherine noticed something...she still didn't look her best...she didn't look as happy as she could be...but Catherine knew why...it took time to heal. She knew that, she had third-degree burns from her marriage from Eddie, but...Sara was so much younger than her, and she had also been through so much more than herself. She didn't deserve that.
"Cath, I'm going to take a shower," Sara told her.
"Okay," Catherine said. And then something hit her. "Wait a minute.." she warned.
"It's okay," Sara told her. "I swear, I'll be fine," she told her.
Catherine sighed. "Alright." She watched as Sara walked into the bathroom and disappeared around the corner. She could hear her turning the faucets on and the door closing as she got in and fell back against the bed, looking over at her now-sleeping daughter. She closed her eyes and fell asleep herself as Sara finished up in the shower.
Catherine flinched when she heard her name.
Why wasn't this person letting her sleep?
She groaned, opening her eyes. "What?" she asked.
Sara smiled. "I called room service and got some food...you've been asleep for a few hours," Sara told her.
"What? Food? Where?" Catherine asked, suddenly very much awake.
Sara laughed. "It's on the table," she told her. Catherine nodded and slowly got up, looking over to her left only to notice Lindsey was already up and eating. With a smile and a tired yawn, she walked over to the table and got a plate of food, sitting back down on the bed with her plate and a drink. She watched as Sara sat down on the bed with a plate for herself and started eating immediately.
"You were hungry," Catherine said.
Sara smiled. "It feels like I haven't eaten in forever," she told her, taking another bite of her food. Catherine just watched- she didn't look like she had scrubbed that hard when she was in the shower, she was wearing short sleeves, and now that she had some food and had taken a hot shower she looked completely refreshed.
Catherine smiled- she knew that the brunette still hadn't completely recovered...hell she hadn't recovered from her marriage yet, but...with her friends and her already strong mind and soul, she was going to recover.
Catherine could feel it.
And she wasn't going to be alone.