This is a short fic about Catherine's thoughts on her life. CS pairing. I hope you will enjoy it and let me know what you think of it by leaving a review.

Lady J you are the best. I keep repeating that, but it's still true. Thank you so much for all your work on the stories I write.

Choices

Choices. Life is full of them. The life you live is based on the choices you have made along the way. When you're at the end of it – like I am now – you look back and rethink the choices you have made. Did you choose right, did you choose wrong, or did you simply avoid making the choice and led half a life?

I, Catherine Flynn, take you, Eddie Willows, to be my lawfully wedded husband.

Yes, I'm the type of person who chooses. I haven't always made the right choices, but I suppose my choices seemed right at the time. I guess I was too young, stupid and stubborn to see that at the time. Moving out at 16 was a result of that youthful stupidity.

Eddie was my first husband. Well, my only husband, really. I can never call meeting and marrying Eddie a mistake, because he gave me the most precious gift I have ever been given – my daughter.

I was a dancer when I met him; an exotic dancer as some would say. I'm not some. I say I was a stripper. Another choice I made, but a choice I have never been ashamed of making. I made good money taking my clothes off for a living, it paid the bills. The side effect of that choice is not something I'm proud of though. That was the stupidest choice I have ever made, and I would have done anything to have been able to make a different choice.

My name is Catherine and I'm an addict.

Drugs. Crack is whack, people! You start out small, thinking you can kick the habit anytime and before you know it you're doing coke. Eddie got me started with that shit. Not that I blame him for becoming an addict, that was my choice. Bad choice.

I realized my mistake though. It took a friend dying for me to do so, but I did. I paid my way through rehab. It was hell, one of the hardest things I have ever done, but I came out stronger on the other side. When my friend died from the O.D. I met a man who would eventually give me another choice to make, a choice that would change my life drastically – his name? Gil Grissom.

I'm Catherine Willows with the Las Vegas Crime Lab.

Gil Grissom was a CSI, that's a crime scene investigator. He gave me an 'in' to the job. He told me which classes I needed to take to become a CSI and I dragged myself through community college. I, unlike others I know, was never Harvard material. All the way through the four years I studied by day and stripped by night. And Eddie? He was in the nearest warm bed screwing some young thing with legs. Monogamy was never his strong suit.

After finishing college my life as a stripper was over and I became, to the world, more respectable. Was never in the job for the justice. Well, yes, maybe that was a positive side effect of what I was doing. But mostly I just loved solving the puzzles; loved to find that last piece of evidence that would make everything make sense, and I was damn good at it too – I still am.

Eddie, I'm pregnant.

That was the beginning of the end. He wasn't ready for the normalcy a baby requires. The normalcy of two parents loving each other, instead of one of them screwing around with every available skirt. I have to give him credit though, he did try and he did love our daughter more than anything in this world. Unfortunately I can't say he had the same feelings for me. The first time he hit me, I excused it. The second time, I picked up Lindsey and we left him.

Eddie, I want a divorce.

Another life altering moment. It was one of the hardest choices to make, but at the same time one of the easiest. Hard, because I had to accept that I couldn't give my child the happy Brady Bunch family she deserved. She never asked to have me as a mother, she didn't ask to have me screw up her life when it had hardly begun. Lindsey was two when the divorce was final. But also the choice was easy to make because we had grown apart as people, or rather I had. I had grown up and Eddie was still the same old. And let's not forget the couple of times he hit me.

Do you know where I can find Catherine Willows?

Enter Sara Sidle. God, I hated her! No, hate is such a strong word – I strongly disliked her. She came here with her Harvard degree, all long, lean and legs and she disrupted the normalcy I had finally gotten at my workplace. Yes, I noticed right away that she was gorgeous – I am a warm blooded woman who never cared much about gender after all. Have you seen those legs, is all I ask.

Mommy, he's dead isn't he?

Eddie died. Eddie was killed and Gil gave Sara the case. In retrospect I can see that it was the right choice, but at the time I treated her badly. I was a regular bitch, to be honest. I made that choice. I made the choice not to be good to her, to treat her like shit, to make her feel guilty for not solving Eddie's murder. That is yet another choice I have had to live with and it took us years to get over that one episode. I tried to make it up to her, but I had hurt her deeply, so it took time and a lot of effort from my side. I made the choice not to give up on her and that is the best choice I have ever made.

I can't be your friend, Catherine.

Why not? I asked her. She refused to answer me the first time I asked her and the many times after that. Truth be told, I didn't want to be her friend either – I wanted so much more. Why, do you ask? You said you hated her, Cath. Well, first of all, never call me Cath. My name is Catherine and only a few select people get the privilege of calling me Cath. And I did dislike her, she was a real pain when she first got here, but she grew on me. Hell, I woke up and smelt the roses. They say opposites attract and I say they are right. I fell in love with a woman who is shy and introvert where I am open and outgoing, she's careful and guarded where I'm carefree and will try anything once. We balance each other out that way. She keeps me grounded in a way that no one has managed before.

I can't be your friend, Cath, because I'm so deeply in love with you that…

That was how far I let her get before kissing her. I have her now and I'll be damned if I am going to let anyone take her away from me again.

Choices.

Life is full of choices and it all boils down to making the right ones in life. I told you in the beginning of this talk that I was at the end of mine. I am in a way – I'm at the end of my old life and starting a new. Starting it with my Sara. My Sara who now sees Lindsey as her own. My Sara who loves me.

Did all my choices, good and bad, lead me here, or was this where I was always destined to end up? I don't know. But what I do know is that in my new life I will stop keeping track of my choices, because I know that every choice I make in the future will be right as long as I have my Sara by my side.

-Fin-