Title: The Hurting

Author: tvaddict23
Rating: T
Spoilers: None
Pairing: GSR - comfort

Author's Note: Songfic. Going by the court transcript '5x10 No Human's Involved' which was in 1984 and given Sara's DOB 16 September 1971, I'm guessing she was around 11 at the time her father was killed (1982?).

This song was played during the episode 6x02 Room Service

Disclaimer: All CSI characters belong to Anthony Zuicker, Alliance Atlantis, CBS et al. The song 'Mad World' was written by Roland Orzabal of the British band Tears for Fears the single was released in 1982.


The Hurting

The day didn't start well. It was the 24th Anniversary. Each year on this day, she wanted to avoid everyone: humanity, life itself. With any luck at all avoid everything that reminded her of the worst day of her life, and the years of fall-out following it.

The song playing on the radio when she woke was one of the songs that had been very popular around that time. Whether it had been playing before, during or after the incident, she couldn't or more to the point, her mind WOULDN'T let her remember where in the time-line of that day it had been playing. Not that it mattered. The song became somewhat of an anthem to her.

It didn't matter where she was shuffled off to, the single and her portable record player went with her. In exasperation, one of her foster parents had bought her a set of headphones to keep the peace. So it came, that no matter where she was shuffled off to, the single, the headphones and her trusty record player came with her.

The song spoke to her like no other before or since. It was now almost a quarter of a century later and she wanted no more that to put ALL of her past behind her.

She was at a good stage of her life. The memories that had troubled her the most, rarely surfaced anymore. This song though, this song bought EVERYTHING back.

Sara slapped the 'off' button with a little more force than she intended and knocked it off the bedside table. Grissom woke instantly. "Wha…?

"Shit! I'm sorry Hon, go back to sleep."

He moved up, leaning on his forearm. "What's wrong?"

Sara turned away. "Nothing."

Getting out of bed, Grissom walked around to her side of the bed and put the clock radio back on the table. He sat down next to her and gently pushed a small amount of the chestnut curtain hiding her face behind her ear. Seeing the tears, he immediately drew her to him.

"What's wrong?"

"Radio…song…" she hiccupped.

Grissom thought for a moment before realizing what the date was, and what exactly was 'wrong'. "Okay, we're going to talk this out."

He made her her favourite tea and waited until the tears had stopped, talking quietly and rubbing her back the entire time. "What song was it?"

"Mad World. The Gary Jules cover, not the original." Grissom nodded. He remembered the song, and he could see how Sara would relate to it.

"Tell me about it."

She leant into his strong chest. "It was playing that day. I don't know when, but I became obsessed with it. I bought the single, and took it everywhere with me. I had my portable turntable and later I got a set of headphones. I listened to it almost every spare minute of the day. I wore out tow singles. Listened to it too many times to count."

Leaving her side for a moment, Grissom got up and shuffled through his music collection. He pulled the 'Trading Snakeoil for Wolftickets' CD from the shelf and loaded it into the player. Grabbing the controller, he set it up to play 'Mad World'. "I'm gonna play it now okay?"

Sara nodded. The piano notes floated from the speakers. It was different from the original by 'Tears for Fears', but it was better more melancholy, in keeping with the words.

All around me are familiar faces
Worn out places
Worn out faces

Bright and early for the daily races
Going no where
Going no where

Gil had to lean in close to Sara to her what she was saying, "They were familiar in one way or another. All the places were the same rundown dingy places. I was always moving, but I never went anywhere."

Their tears are filling up their glasses
No expression
No expression

"Toward the end, she only ever cried. I don't think I saw my mother laugh or smile for at least a year before she killed my father. Her face was tear-stained, but she had no expression at all on her face. Not hate, not sadness, not relief, nothing. It was like she'd become some kind of zombie."

Gil knew that this was a disassociation that was common among battered women who finally had enough and would take the ultimate step to get some peace.

Hide my head I wanna drown my sorrow
No tomorrow
No tomorrow

"I told you, that I couldn't remember the name of the social worker that took my hand?" Grissom nodded in remembrance.

"Filtering."

Sara nodded. "Yeah, I couldn't get my head out of her shoulder though. My world was gone, there was no tomorrow for me. I think I fell asleep there. The poor woman had to wait until I'd fallen asleep until she could move again. She was a good woman."

Grissom smiled with a little relief. It was good to know that in her time of need, there was someone who made her feel even a little comforted and loved. He still hadn't managed to get the whole story from her, but each time things like this would come up, he'd get a little closer, receive a little more insight into what made 'his' Sara tick.

And I find I kind of funny
I find it kind of sad
The dreams in which I'm dying are the best I've ever had
I find it hard to tell you
I find it hard to take
When people run in circles its a very very
Mad world
Mad world

"I think that that was the first night I had the dream where I died. It was the same way my father died. My mother wasn't the one with the knife though, instead it was this shadow with no face. The really weird thing about this dream was, that instead of being terrified, I felt peaceful, at rest. I don't remember what if anything my father did to me at least, but I loved him. He was my father."

He also knew, as he was sure that she did, that many times it didn't really matter what a parent did to the child, or what may have happened, as terrible as it may have been, that a child will naturally cling to the familiarity of that parent.

"I know honey, it's a natural reaction. You know that right?" He made sure that she knew that none of the feelings she'd had, and nothing that had happened was in her power to control.

"The worst times were my birthday. I don't think I was in many places long enough to warrant a birthday party, let alone presents. I think that between the ages of twelve and seventeen I received a total of three presents: one of those was actually from my brother on my thirteenth, but he never visited. No one party though. It's kinda why I still hate my birthday, and parties for that matter."

Grissom was beginning to feel physically ill at what this brave, beautiful woman had had to endure at such a young age. Though it was true that he'd lost his father at a similarly early age, at least he'd had the devoted love of his mother. Sara ha even been denied that small pleasure when her mother had been sentenced to an insane asylum.

Children waiting for the day they feel good
Happy birthday
Happy birthday

"Did anyone ever consider adoption?" Grissom asked hesitantly.

Smiling sadly Sara said, "Too old, too shy. When ever anyone came, which was very rare, I was told to sit still and be quiet. I guess that's the same with most kids. To been seen and not heard."


And I feel the way that every child should
Sit and listen
Sit and listen

"As much as all of that sucked though the worst was new schools. I had a new school nearly every semester. Toward the end of junior high, I didn't even bother TRYING to make friends, what was the point if I was only going to be shuffled off to another foster home anyway. I was always the 'new' kid. Forever the outcast. I guess that's why I stayed here so long. Not just waiting for you," she smiled wanly at him. "But because I'd finally found a family here. It's been hard, but what family's always happy? There are always spats of some sort, although here I know no-one will kill anyone. And if they did, they'd know how to get rid of the evidence," she said smiling darkly at the morbid joke.


Went to school and I was very nervous
No one knew me
No one new me
Hello teacher tell me what's my lesson
Look right through me
Look right through me

Burrowing back into his chest, she sighed. "I'm a total fruit cake aren't I?"

She felt him shrug. "Sara, I challenge you to find one person in all the world that fits the term 'normal'. Normal is what ever you choose it to be. Am I normal, Warrick, Catherine? I guarantee that everyone in our team has something about them they find abnormal, or wish they could change."

Gently cupping her chin, he bought his lips to hers. "Are the dreams where you're dying still the best you've ever had?"

Sara shook her head and returned the kiss with interest. "No, now the best dreams I have are where I'm with you for the rest of our lives. Thank you Gil for accepting me for loving me. Thank you for talking this through with me. I feel better about my past than I ever have."

And I find I kind of funny
I find it kind of sad
The dreams in which I'm dying are the best I've ever had
I find it hard to tell you
I find it hard to take
When people run in circles its a very very
Mad world
Mad world
Enlarging your world
Mad world

As Sara lay in the afterglow of their love making, she thought to herself, 'from a lonely cast out child to being loved so totally by the man of my dreams, it truly is a Mad World.'

A/N 2 - The end sucked a little. Still, let me know what you thought. Couldn't get the song out of my head, and thought it would be something Sara could identify with, especially the Gary Jules version which is so haunting.