3:02 A.M.

March 16

Sunshine Apartments

APT. 324

"Stop it. You're hurting. Get off of me"

"Shut you fucking mount you little bitch of I will shut it for you."

"Someone please HELP ME!"

A slap to the face.

Like a shot in the dark Toby woke up painting and covered in sweat. "Fuck you Vern!" After three long years or parole he was finally free. He had been living in his new apartment for the past half a year and he was still having nightmares. He had not seen OZ in nearly five years yet the memories refused to leave him be. Toby set in bad an just concentrated on breathing. It was only a dream. He can no longer hurt you. He kept repeating his little mantra. Maybe if he said it long enough he would believe it. It had not worked yet but there was always tomorrow. When he went to lay back down he could he a muffled cry coming from the room next to him. The girl next door probably had another fight with her boy friend. Toby had the unfortunate privilege to be a silent witness to the twenty something's Disney grasp on love. "Fucking cheap ass apartment's paper thin walls."

"Get off of me you fucking pervert." Something broke and Beecher heard a man yell.

"Fuck! You are going to pay for that you little bitch."

"Shit!" Toby knew he should stay out of it but something inside of him propelled him to the door and out his apartment. He pushed the partially open door the rest of the way. "Sarah? You ok? I heard yelling in my room and thought I would check on you." He the guy and the gun about a second to late. The barrel smacked Toby across the side of his face causing him to tumble back against the wall. "Fuck!"

The man raise he gun and pointed it at Beecher. "Who the fuck are you?" His voice cracked as he talked.

The smell of Bourbon on the attackers breath would have made a normal man nauseous. To Toby it just brought back old memories. "Tobias Beecher. I'm her neighbor. Now put the gun down before you do anything else you will regret." The fear was obvious in the guys quivering green eyes. Toby slowly pushed himself off the wall and began to approach the scared kid.

"Stay the fuck away from me." The gunman brought his other hand up to try and steady his shaking hand.

"Just relax and put the gun down. I know you do not want to hurt me. I can see it in your eyes." Toby took another step forward. His chest exploded with a burst of blood and mind numbing pain. Beecher slowly slid down the wall leaving a trail of blood behind him. Sarah and the kid were staring and him, their eyes large with shock. He tried to talk but nothing but blood came out of his mouth.

"Fuck I'm out of here." The man sprinted out the door slamming it behind him.

Sarah reached for the phone and dialed for help. After a quick conversation the rape and the shooting a had been reported. The board operator on the other end of the line said that police and an ambulance were on the way. Sarah slammed the phone down and a ran to the bathroom to grab a towel. "Fuck I knew I should have done laundry." She grabbed the cleanest looking towel and ran back to Beecher. She placed it firmly on his chest. Toby winced and made a gurgling sound that Sarah took as a scream of pain. "Hold on Mr. Beecher. An ambulance will be her in a minute. Oh fuck. I forgot to tell her the apartment number. Mr. Beecher I need you to hold this towel yourself. I need to go down stairs so the guys know where to go. Ok?" She placed his hand on the towel ran out the door. Running down the stairs two at a time she finally made it to the ground floor and out the building. She had failed to remember that New York was freezing at three in the morning in March. She began to shiver slightly as she waited for the ambulance. Luckily she did not have to wait to long. Soon the flashing light and siren were in front of the building. She told the two women which apartment and sat down on the stoop of her building. As her adrenaline began to wear off she started to cry. She thought she heard someone talking to her but she decided to ignore it for the time being.


3:28 A.M.

NYPD

SVU Precinct

"Man it has been a long night. Thirty more minutes and we are out of here."

"Stop right there before you jinx me. You keep on and we are going to get stuck at a crime screen for the next five hours."

"Come on Fin you do not really believe in that crap do you?"

Before Fin could answer Cragen came out of his office barking orders. "Stabler, Fin you are up. A rape was just called in on Avenue D at the Sunshine Apartments. A women called it in and said a man had been shot. Could be the attacker."

"Got it." Fin gave Elliot the look of doom as the both got their coats and headed to the car. "Told you."


3:34 A.M.

Sarah Lander's Apartment

Beecher laughed. Well to him it sounded like a laugh to anyone else in the room it would have sounded like he was gurgling. God has such a fucked up since of humor. After living through all the shit Oz threw at him he was going to killed but some scared little kid he did not know. It just seemed to be such an anticlimactic end to his life. But hell at least he would be with Gary. God could not be that cruel could he, she, it? Whatever the hell God was, it would let him be with his son. It had to. Beecher slowly closed his eyes and wait for what fates had in store for him. Tobias was taken out of his dream would when a wave of pain jolted through his body. Toby tried to speak but was only able to spit blood from his mouth.

"Sam get the stretcher ready. Hold on sir. This is probably going to hurt like hell but we have got to get you on it. We need to lay you down ok." The two paramedics looked at each other and began to count. When they reached three they slid Tobias flat on the floor.

He waited for them to move him but he did not expect it to hurt so much. "Ah! Fu…" A mouth full of blood that cut off his air supply cut him off. He tired to listen to what the paramedic was telling him but she kept going out of focus and her voice began to fade away.

"Mr. Beecher we need you to stay with us. We think you have a punctured lung. That would explain why you keep coughing up blood. Mr. Beecher? MR. BEECHER! Shit hurry up Sam he is unconscious."


3:40 A.M.

Sunshine Apartments

Both detectives watched as the stretcher caring an unconscious Tobias Beecher rushed by them. "That our perp?" Stabler asked the uniform standing by the ambulance.

"Maybe. I don't know. The girl will not talk. She has just been mumbling and crying this entire time."

"Fine. Fin canvas the building and see if anyone saw anything or is willing to admit that they did. I'll take care of the girl." Stabler walked over to the shivering girl sitting on the stoop. He pulled of his trench coats he started to talk. "Here take this." He reached to hand her his coat.

Sarah moved away for Stabler's out stretched arm and shriek. "Don't touch me!"

"Ok I won't." He placed the coat on the stoop next to her. "Will you put the jacket on please. It is much to cold out here for what you are wearing."

Her eyes seemed to catch fire as she spoke. "What is that supposed to mean? That I deserved what happened to me? That I was asking for it because of what I was wearing?"

"Calm down. I was not implying that at all. Just that it is really cold out here."

"Sorry."

"It is all right. You have been through a lot tonight. It is understandable. So are you up for taking a trip to the precinct and filing a report."

"Yeah. I… I think I can do that."

"Ok let me check with the other detective that came with me." Elliot left Sarah sitting and headed inside the building. "Have you seen the detective I came with?" He asked the cop standing guard inside the building

"Yeah he is up stairs."

"Thanks." Luckily it was a rather small apartment building so there was not that floors that Fin could be hiding. When he had reached the second floor he noticed Fin coming down from the third. "Ah there you are. Any luck."

"Not a damn thing, but did you really think anyone here would be willing to talk.?"

"Not really. Come on. The vic is going to ride with us back to the precinct to give her report. Hopefully she will be able to inform us on who the hell was taken away in the ambulance. Did you see how much blood she was covered in?"


10:00 A.M.

Oswald State Penitentiary

Visiting Room

"So how was your meeting with Sarah Landers?"

"We have got a problem."

"What do you mean we have a problem?"

"I meet her last night like you told. But before I could finish some guy bust in. She lived in a real shit hole so I thought it would have been ok if she yelled."

"You fucking idiot. If you fuck this up you are going to have a lot of people pissed the fuck off at you. A lot of people have put a shit load of time and effort in this. And they sure as shit will have your ass if you fuck it up. You better fucking fix it and fast. Do you know the guys name?"

"Um… Beecher. Tobias Beecher yeah that was it. What is with the look of death?"

"Are you sure that is his name?"

"Yeah he told me it right after I pistol-whipped him. One thing led to another and I kind of shot him."

"You kind of shot him? Is he dead?"

"I do not know. I got the fuck out of there."

"You better fucking find out."

"Why?"

"Because Beecher is an OZ Alumni. Which means if he is not dead then he will want a piece of you ass when he's better. The fucker may not seem like much but he is fucked up in the head and he has money, a shit load of money. I suggest that you find out whether or not Beecher is still breathing. And if he is you better stop it while he is not at one hundred percent."

"Fuck me. I have some work to do."


10:36 A.M.

NYPD

SVU Precinct

"Ok Sarah is now safely tucked away at her parents house in the Hampton's."

"The Hampton's? You sayin' she is loaded?"

"Very much so. Her dad owns a string of high end bakeries all up and down the East Coast."

"You thinkin' that this might be personal?"

"Could be. It would not be the first time that someone went after a family member to send a message to the big wig of the family."

"So what's up with the guy who was shot? Did she say anything about him? Is he our guy?"

"I wish it was going to be that easy. Turns out that he is her neighbor. She said that he came over when she heard him scream and ended up getting shot in the process. I thought that they might be friends but it turns out she did not even know his first name. Turns out the just see each other in the hall way every now and then. I got in to contact with Dr. Daily over at County General. She said he had about a 50/50 chance of making it through the day and will call if anything changes."

"Poor bastard. Stuck his neck out for a stranger and nearly lost his head. Well Elliot, in twenty minutes I will have been awake for two days straight. I am heading home before something else happens. You want a ride home?"

"Nah thanks man. I am going to do a few things around here then head home." Well it was half true. Elliot was going to try to find some information on Tobias Beecher and then crash in the crib. It had been five no six days since he had been home but that was between him and his empty apartment. His coworkers did not need to know every detail of his personal life.

"All right man. Don't work to long. You need your sleep too."

"Later Fin."