Sternberg's Triangular Theory of Love
AN: This idea came to me while reading about different theories of love, relationships, and families. There will be three chapters, one for each component of the theory. I am very curious to know what you think of this, so please review. Spoilers for 'Nesting Dolls,' 'Committed,' and 'Grave Danger.' Disclaimer: I don't own CSI. I know, you're shocked.)
Sternberg's Triangular Theory of Love
According to Sternberg's Triangular Theory of Love, in order to have love you must also have intimacy, passion, and commitment. These three components make up the walls of a triangle. Love is contained within these walls. If one does not exist, or is torn down, love will not remain.
Chapter 1: Intimacy
Sara sat holding her knees as her body shook with each sob that broke free. She hadn't cried like this in years, and he was here watching her breakdown. She had just confessed her deepest darkest secret to him and now she felt lost in time and space. Would he look at her differently now, like others had when it happened? Would he run away, unable to cope with this new knowledge?
Grissom sat watching his protégé crumble in front of him. The weight of the long-held secret forcing her down. His chest ached at the sight of the sobs that shook her body. He didn't know what to say to make it better. There were no words that could take away her pain. The only thing he could do was to reach out and take her hand.
She gripped his hand like it was the last breath of air on earth. They sat with their hands entwined until Sara calmed down. Once her breathing had become normal again, he stood and retrieved a glass of water from her kitchen and gave it to her to drink. As he watched through concerned eyes, he became aware of the vibrations caused by his cell phone. After he finished reading the text message, he turned to Sara who was still sipping the cool liquid. "I'm sorry; I have to get back to the lab."
She nodded with a slight shake, and he added, "Would it be alright if I brought some take out over after shift ends?"
She attempted a smile, but failed as she gave him the out she thought he would eagerly take, "You don't have to, I'll be alright."
"I want to. Get some rest, and I'll be back in awhile."
She gave a half smile and nodded again. Without even thinking about it he bent over and kissed her forehead, and then he was gone.
As time went on they began to talk more often, usually over meals. It was comfortable. It was casual, and it was happening two to three times a week. Usually it would happen if they left the lab at the same time.
At first it was casual conversations, but over time they become more intimate. Sara had already shared her biggest secret, but she opened up more about her family life, about foster care, and about college. She shared that not all of her memories of her father were bad ones. The trips to the beach, being his assistant gardener, playing cards were all remembered fondly. She shared her confusion over how you can hate someone so much, and yet still love them.
She told him that she always knew what kind of a day it was going to be based on her father's mood in the morning. She knew the cues that would start him drinking, which lead to the yelling, which eventually lead to the fights.
She told him that her mother wasn't much better. After her father would get drunk and yell and fight and pass out, her mother would repeat the cycle. Well almost, her mom would drink and yell, but she would never lay a hand on her children. She would however give it as good as she got to her husband.
Sometimes when Sara spoke she would speak in an even tone, as if someone else was speaking through her, and other times she would speak through tears. Grissom was there to hold her hand when she needed comforting, give her a shoulder to lean on when she needed support, make her smile when she needed a laugh, but through it all he listened to every word she spoke.
In turn Grissom began to open up to Sara. He shared his insecurities about life. He told her stories about his family. She learned that his birth father left when he was very young and how he had been adopted by his stepfather who passed away when he was only nine-years-old.
He told her about his mother's hearing loss and about his fear of a similar fate. He was fearful of not being able to do the job he loved as a result. She was the only one he felt safe in sharing most of his secrets with. She gave him the greatest gift he had ever received. She listened to him. She cared about what he had to say.
Yes, between all of the lectures he had lead, classed he had taught, he had had hundreds if not thousands of people listening to him. That was different though. They didn't want to hear about him, only about what he did, how he did it, and why. Sara wanted to hear about him, who he was, his thoughts, his dreams, his fantasies, his desires, and his regrets. She offered him the same support he gave to her.
As time continued to pass, they came to depend on each other for support when cases were stressful or difficult. They celebrated their triumphs and comforted their sorrows together.
When Sara returned home the night following the case that took them to the Desert State Psychiatric Hospital, she was still a little shaken after her ordeal with Adam Trent. Memories of her own experiences with her mother flooded back. She tried to shake the thoughts from her head, but they crept back inside. The fear, the confusion, the loss, the anger invaded her mind.
She started for her phone when there was knock at her door. Changing direction she made her way to the door. She smiled as she peered through the peep hole and immediately opened the door to the visitor on the other side.
"I just wanted to make sure you were alright." She could hear the concern in his voice.
"I've had better days," her eyes fell to the floor, but came back to meet his eyes as she continued, "But I'll be fine."
"I know you will, but I needed to see for myself." He thought for a minute, and then he made one of the biggest confessions he had ever made to her, "I was afraid I was going to lose you earlier. I don't ever want to know what losing you feels like."
His words caught her off guard and she did not know how to respond at first. There was so much she was learning about this man. There was so much he was learning about her as well.
They were learning when the other one needed them. She knew when he wanted company and when he wanted to be alone. She knew when he would say one thing, but really meant another.
He knew when she needed support and when she needed to handle something on her own. He knew when it was okay to show up at her place unannounced and when he needed to call first. He could tell by the sound of her voice rather than her words when she wanted to be alone and when she needed him.
After Nick's kidnapping he arrived home and was not surprised to see Sara pull up behind his car before he made it inside. She slowly made her way up the walkway, never taking her eyes from his.
She spoke when she got closer, "Thought you might want some company."
He opened the door and guided her through it.