MEET & GREET
Phoebe Parker practically jumped out of her SUV as she arrived at the Clark County Crime Scene Investigations building. She'd been waiting for this day for a whole month; ever since she'd arrived in Las Vegas from Miami. Although, she was originally from Australia.
Phoebe pressed the lock on her hand-held remote and locked her car before heading towards the ominous looking building ahead of her. She tossed her keys in her shoulder bag and pulled of her sunglasses, wincing in the bright light.
Hot day in Vegas indeed. Phoebe had grown up in Brisbane which got pretty damn hot in the summer; so this nasty, scorching Vegas weather wasn't exactly new to her. Not that she enjoyed it in any way.
Phoebe had been working in Miami for about a year when she'd been offered the job in Vegas. She jumped at the chance to get out of that city. It just wasn't her scene. But living in the city that never sleeps? That was her scene.
Phoebe had been called in to replace another agent, Holly Gribbs, who'd been killed on the job the week before. She was meant to come in as trainee since they were already short handed but now that job had fallen to Phoebe. And she was more than happy to oblige.
Phoebe entered the building through the glass doors. She checked with the lady at the front desk who told her to go all the way to the back and that's where she'd find Gil Grissom; her new supervisor. She'd heard a lot about this guy. He was apparently kind of kooky with a serious fetish for insects. Phoebe was eager to meet him; she'd occasionally been called kooky herself.
Nick Stokes glanced at the chart on the wall in the locker room. It was only the week before he'd been promoted to CSI level three after completing a hundred cases. He'd beaten Warrick Brown by one. With that promotion he got a pay rise and an extra fortnight's vacation; definitely worth it. As Nick grabbed his bag to head home for some much needed sleep after the night shift before he started again at ten, he noticed a woman walking past the locker room.
He didn't recognize her which meant she was probably either a witness or next of kin for a victim. CSI was a small building; everyone basically knew everything about each other. She was gorgeous; Nick noticed that right away. He was somewhat of a ladies man. Although she wasn't exactly the type of girl Nick usually went after. He was partial to redheads and she was a brunette. Nick often met his dates while on a night out. He hadn't had a serious relationship in years.
The woman walked passed the locker and headed towards Grissom's office without even looking in Nick's direction. He craned his neck around his locker and kept watching her walk. He didn't notice Sara Sidle enter the room.
"Hey Nick." She greeted him as she shrugged off her jacket. Sara had been working at CSI for about a week. Grissom had called her in to help when Holly Gribbs was killed. Now she was on full time. When Nick didn't answer her, she looked in his direction. He was watching something else. "Nick?"
Nick snapped back to reality. "Yeah?" he turned to Sara. "What's up?"
"What're you staring at?" Sara walked and looked at what Nick was staring at. She saw a woman she recognized standing at the door to Grissom's office. Sara smiled as she turned to Nick and raised her eyebrows. "I wouldn't. She's the new girl."
"What's that now?" Nick asked trying to look casual as he packed his bag.
"Holly's replacement. Grissom was telling me about her. She starts tonight but had to come in today to learn the ropes." Sara walked back to her own locker.
"She's gonna work here?" Nick asked.
"Yeah." Sara shouldered her bag and slammed her locker shut. She walked past Nick as she headed for the door. "Might wanna stop drooling; not pretty."
Sara gave him a smug smile. Nick rolled his eyes as she left the locker room. He slammed his locker shut and slowly shook his head. He headed out of the locker room, glancing back at this new girl once more before he left.
Phoebe stared into Grissom's empty office. She was in the right place, his name was on the door, but he wasn't inside. Not anywhere that she could see anyway. One thing Phoebe did notice was there were jars of dead animals all over the shelves. She saw labels for animal parts and fetal pigs. And then all over the walls where glass cases of butterflies, cockroaches and spiders. Phoebe entered the office slowly, scanning the various specimens.
"Creepy, huh?" Grissom said from the doorway. Phoebe spun around, slightly startled. Grissom walked further into his office, joining Phoebe in looking at his collection. "Most people are put off by my friends."
Phoebe smiled. "No, not put off. Intrigued."
"Phoebe Parker?" Grissom guessed.
"Hi." Phoebe extended her hand and he shook it.
"Gil Grissom. You're new supervisor." Grissom went over to his desk and sat down. Phoebe sat in the chair across from him.
"How are you finding Vegas?" Grissom asked, retrieving her file from a stack on his desk.
"Good. Always something happening." Phoebe told him.
"Indeed there is. You're starting on tonight's shift, right?" Grissom asked, scanning her file.
"Yeah, as far as I know." Phoebe told him nodding.
"You'll be working with Nick Stokes and Catherine Willows. Catherine's an old hand. But don't tell her I said that. She'll teach you everything you need to know about being in the field here in Vegas. I understand you worked for Miami Dade CSI for a year?" Grissom asked.
"Yeah, with Horatio Caine? I was CSI Two there." Phoebe informed him.
"One of the best." Grissom nodded. "Well, I asked you to come here today just so you could get a feel for the lab and meet some of our people. But first…" Grissom stood up and went over to a cupboard on the wall. He retrieved from it what seemed to be all the equipment needed to take Phoebe's blood. She raised her eyebrows at him as he stood before her. "I'll need your blood."
Phoebe wondered if this was meant to throw her off; some kind of test to see if she was worthy of CSI Vegas. Terrified of needles as she may be; she wasn't going to let that stop her work here. She rolled up her right sleeve and held it out to Grissom. "Try not to take too much; I'm fond of my blood."
Phoebe focused on the wall covered in cases of butterflies as Grissom drew her blood into a container. "Standard procedure for new employees." He was saying. "All done."
Phoebe looked at her arm and saw he'd placed a bandage over the needle mark. Grateful it was over; she shrugged her sleeve down.
"Ready to meet the team?" Grissom asked, smiling at her.
Phoebe got to her feet. "Damn right." She grinned.
The lab was the first place they went. Phoebe was introduced to a young man by the name of Greg Sanders; a cute, slightly weird lab tech who had an affinity for heavy metal music. He winked at Phoebe as she left. She smiled and shook her head at him.
Next they went into the break room where Phoebe met Warrick Brown, a very attractive black man with unimaginable green eyes. He was on his way out so a rushed greeting was all they got.
On their way down the hall, Grissom stopped a middle-aged woman with blonde hair. "Catherine Willows." He said pointing to Phoebe. "This is Phoebe Parker."
"Phoebe. My newbie for tonight." Catherine shook Phoebe's hand. "Don't worry; easy case for your first night, I promise. Are you excited?"
"I think eager and slightly scared about sums it up." Phoebe told her.
"Hey, you're working with me; you'll do fine." She smiled and looked to Grissom. "I gotta go see Lindsey before school. See you tonight."
Grissom and Phoebe bade her goodbye and they continued on. "Wanna take a trip downtown?" Grissom asked Phoebe.
"Sure." She agreed immediately. "Ah…why?"
"There's someone else I'd like you to meet." Grissom gave her a secretive smile and held open the door for her. "Shall we?"
When they arrived at the sheriff's office downtown, Phoebe got nervous. She had a thought that maybe they were going to make her sit a lie-detector test. They had taken her blood, after all, was a polygraph that far behind? Grissom directed Phoebe into an office were a surly looking man was sitting at his desk.
"Captain Jim Brass, this is Phoebe Parker. Our new recruit." Grissom stood near the door and ushered Phoebe to stand in front of the captain's desk.
Phoebe smiled at him, unsure of what to say. He took care of that. "You are now the sixth person I've had to hire for that lab." He sneered taking a long sip from his cup of coffee.
"Lucky six." She said with a smile. She got the feeling he was trying to intimidate her.
"Ah, you think you're funny." Brass told her with a smirk. "Another joker, just what we need. Okay then, Parker, why don't you tell me why you think you should be here; I'm sure it'll make me laugh."
Phoebe shrugged her shoulders. "Well, because I'm the best." She said bluntly. "But you knew that. Otherwise I wouldn't be here. I mean, why hire someone you think is sub-par? It just makes your office look bad."
Brass raised his eyebrows. "Is that so?"
Phoebe nodded. "Absolutely. The only reason we're having this conversation is because you're seeing if I'll fit in here; among the best of the best. Oh, and between us? I will."
Brass stared at her with a stone look. Grissom put his head in his hands; Brass did not like being talked down to. But then, to Grissom's amazement, the Captain broke out in a dry laugh. "Yeah, yeah, get out of my office."
Phoebe smiled at him. "Gladly, sir." She said before turning and leaving feeling rather happy with herself.
Grissom stayed behind for a moment, watching Brass chuckle. He looked up at Grissom and shook his head. "She's very good."
Grissom smiled and left the office, leaving the Captain in a considerably more cheerful mood then he'd been in before they'd arrived.