by Jacquie and Sassy
Alex raised her hand and knocked softly on his door. She began to wonder after a few minutes if he was even home. She was about to turn away when a very disheveled, disoriented Bobby opened the door.
"Eames? Wha…what are you doing here?" He was still rubbing his eyes.
"Checking on you." She pushed past him. "It's 10 o'clock, Bobby. Did you forget you had to work today?"
"Oh..." He turned and started for his room to get dressed.
She followed him. "You okay?"
She touched his arm, stopping him.
"I had to go to Carmel Ridge in the middle of the night. My mom..."
"I can always tell Deakins...you need the day off."
"Nah, its fine. Just give me five minutes." Bobby disappeared into the bathroom.
She waited patiently for him in the living room. He came out a few minutes later, freshly showered and looking more awake than he did.
"Is she okay?"
She left it at that. If he wanted her to know more, he'd tell her. She understood why he kept that part of his life from her. "We can stop for coffee."
"I covered for you...with Deakins." She said as they made their way down the stairs of his building.
"I'll explain it to him."
Bobby got into the passenger seat of Alex's car.
She drove in silence and turned in at the first Starbucks on the way back to One Police Plaza. "I'll go get it. What do you want?"
"Black coffee and a blueberry muffin I guess."
"I'll be right back." She slammed the door behind her as she made her way inside the building.
Alex sighed as waited on their coffee and muffins. She hoped one day he'd open up to her. Getting their order, she put on a smile and made her way back to the SUV. She handed it to him. "Just what you need." Once at the station, Alex told Bobby to go on up. There was something she needed to discuss with Marie in Personnel.
Deakins in the meantime had seen Bobby come in. "Bobby?" he walked up to him.
Deakins looked worried. "Could you come to my office please?"
"Everything okay?" He settled at his desk.
"My mom's been sick," Bobby admitted. "I mean sicker than usual."
"You need time?" Deakins looked up at him.
"I need to be with her, sir. The doctors think..." Bobby's voice began to break much to his chagrin. "She doesn't have a lot of time."
He stood and walked around his desk. "I understand. Just fill out the paperwork, and it's yours."
Bobby nodded and left Deakins office.
Alex was just sitting at her desk when Bobby sat down in his chair with a loud sigh.
"He give you a hard time?"
"Quite the opposite. He's giving me time off." Bobby picked up his pen to start filling out the necessary paperwork.
"Oh." She tried to look like it didn't bother her. "I'll finish these cases."
"My mom...she's dying.." Bobby said after a moment.
Alex's head jerked up. "Bobby...I...uh..." She bit her lip as tears came to her eyes. She hated to see him hurting.
"She's been really ill for a while." he said softly.
"I'm here if you need me." She said softly.
"Thanks." Bobby picked up his jacket. "I'll see ya."
Alex watched him walk away and picked up her pen with a sigh. She ached to hold him, tell him everything was going to be okay. But was it? She wasn't sure. She just prayed that whatever happened that he'd reach out to her, let her help him.
A few days went by this way, Alex chasing leads either on her own or with Mike or Carolyn's help. One day, while filling out a finale report to close a case, the phone rang. Instantly, she knew it was him.
"Alex, I need you…" He spoke so soft it terrified her.
"I'm on my way." She grabbed her coat and looked at Deakins. Without a single word, he nodded understanding.
Alex stood there beside her partner. It had begun to rain almost as soon as the small graveside service began. Now it was just the two of them standing there in the rain. She would stand there forever if it meant he didn't have to be alone.
Bobby had remained silently stoic throughout the service. Alex moved closer to him and put her hand slowly in his. Tears came upon him like a torrent, and he clung to her like she was the only thing between him and insanity.
Alex couldn't hold him up as they both sank to the ground as she held him. "Just hold on to me."
Bobby buried his face against her neck as sobs racked his body.
"We should get you out of the rain." She said as the sobs started to subside.
"Just.. don't leave me alone," he begged in a whisper. "Please..."
"Promise." She helped him stand and she placed the single red rose she'd been clutching on the casket.
Bobby leaned down one more time to kiss the casket. "I love you Mom," he whispered before he stood up and allowed Alex to take his hand.
After she drove him home, she helped him inside. "I'll keep the people away."
She reassured him as she helped him off with his coat.
Bobby grabbed her hand again. "Alex, I..." he trailed off as tears choked him up.
She touched his face. "Take your time."
"I can't thank you enough...for being here with me," he said softly.
"I'm not just your partner...I'm also your friend."
"I know...but it still means a lot."
"Think you could eat something?"
Bobby's face slowly broke into a grin. "You know me...I'm a bottomless pit."
"What would you like?" Alex said with a small smile of her own.
"I feel like clogging my arteries. How about we order from that diner a few blocks away from here."
"I'll go get it."
"You don't have to. They deliver."
"Oh." She squeezed his hand. "What do you want then?"
"A cheeseburger deluxe...fries and gravy...chocolate milkshake."
A grin spread across her face. "Anything else?"
Her smile faded as she swallowed hard. Surely, her mind was playing tricks on her. "What?"
"Just want you to stay with me."
"I'm not going anywhere."
"I'm not being a very good host. I'm sorry...what did you want to order?" Bobby picked up his phone. He was already starting to dial.
"Woman after my own heart," he lightly teased.
"Just order the food, Goren."
She mouthed that she was going to the bathroom. When she returned a few minutes later, she smiled to see him look at her in surprise. She'd helped herself to one of his t-shirts. Hers had been soaked. She was now wearing a faded blue t-shirt and her black skirt.
Then she happened to look around. There was soft music playing on Bobby's stereo.
There were candles on the kitchen table.
"Just thought we needed a little mood." He smiled at her.
She slowly moved toward him. Laying her hand on his arm to still his movements, she whispered, "You're not like her, Bobby."
She heard his quivering breath as he inhaled deeply. Then slowly he began moving again.
She sighed as she started to turn away. His hand went out to her arm. She stopped but didn't turn to him, afraid he'd see the tears on her cheeks. He gently turned her to face him. Her eyes closed. She felt his lips gently kiss her tears away.
"I'm supposed to be the one doing that." Her arms slid around his waist as she buried her head in his chest.
Bobby smiled softly as he rested his chin on her head. Their feet began moving as they started dancing to I Love the way you Love me.
When the song was over, Alex wished they'd played it again. She never wanted to move out of his arms. Bobby began softly singing the song in her ear. The feel of his breath on her ear caused her to shiver all the way down to her toes. "Bobby..."
"I love the way you love me...strong and wild slow and easy...hard and oh, so completely. I love the way you love me," he sang.
Her lips somehow made their way to his. The knock on Bobby's door interrupted the moment. She pulled away.
Bobby gently kissed her forehead before he grabbed his wallet from the entry way table.
She clutched the counter as her legs trembled.
He returned a few minutes later with a cardboard tray and a paper bag which he set down on the kitchen table. He was whistling as he set out the food on plates.
She turned and watched him. She'd never seen him this way. He was actually relaxing. She sighed.
He caught her eyes and smiled at her.
"This is nice."
Bobby groaned as he looked into the bag. "Aw man, they didn't put ketchup in again."
"I'm sure you have some." She made her way to the fridge.
"If I do it's in the side door." Bobby arranged the contents of the bag on plates and then walked over to the CD player to inspect his collection.
"So...what we listening to now?"
Bobby took a deep breath and put in the recording he had made a few days previous.
He hoped Alex liked the song he had written for her.
She stopped when she heard his voice coming through the speakers. Her eyes met his.
"You saw through the lies...the wall around my heart. You made me want another start.
You will always have my heart forever." Bobby's voice sang.
She moved toward him, reaching for him. Bobby took her in his arms.
"You've always had my heart." Her lips met his gently.
Bobby's body began to tremble
"You wrote that for me?"
"If she...if she hadn't died, Bobby...would you be telling me this?" Alex's eyes closed.
"Yes," he whispered in her ear.
"The food's getting cold."
Bobby reluctantly let her go. He pulled out her chair for her. She thanked him softly. She watched as he inhaled his food, while she barely touched hers.
He looked sheepishly at her. "Sorry...starving."
"Good to see you eating."
"But you're not. Something wrong?"
"I'm not that hungry." She said as she moved her hair out of her face.
"You can always eat it later...or if you don't want it, I can eat it." He studied her eyes. "You sure you're alright?"
She pushed her plate to him. "I'm fine. Here you eat it." She nabbed a fry and popped it into her mouth.
Instead Bobby wrapped it up in cellophane. "Thought you wanted it?" Her eyes lost in his for a moment.
"Suddenly not hungry anymore," Bobby half-shrugged. He stuck it away in his fridge before sipping on his milkshake.
She stood and took the shake from him. Slightly puzzled, Bobby looked down at her. "You need to rest." She caressed his cheek.
"Just promise me you won't leave," he said softly.
"I'm going to hold you while you sleep." She said softly. "If you'll let me that is."
Bobby held her tightly. "Come on." She took his hand and led him toward his bedroom.
He got under the covers, opening his arms for her, his eyes looking pleadingly at her.
"Why don't we get you out of those clothes? They won't be comfortable to either of us." She tugged at his tie as he moved back to the edge of the bed to allow her to undress him.
Bobby let himself be stripped down to his boxers. She slid out of her skirt. "You don't mind, do you?"
Bobby swallowed a hard lump in his throat as he shook his head. Pushing him back gently, she slid under the covers with him. She laid his head on her chest. "That song...thank you the song."
"I meant every word," Bobby said softly, kissing her hair.
"Bobby, when you're ready...I'm here." She ran her fingers through his hair.
"I know" he said softly. "I love you." His eyes closed as he gave in to his exhaustion.
"I love you too." Her whispered response was lost in the darkness as she held him. He was finally free.