A/N: This is going to end up going M/C at some point, just so you know. This chapter follows Logan and Barek through season five, in order, with two of these things going towards ITWSH. CI's not mine.
The name is familiar. She's heard of him by reputation, because he's a hothead, and that's what got him shoved to Staten Island in the first place. Mike Logan. The NYPD's black sheep…or shield, she muses, wryly. She wonders what she's getting herself into.

When she sees him, she's struck by the way he looks. And she starts to profile him, without thinking. Deakins talks, but she barely hears him. She's too busy trying to read her partner. And then he's holding his hand out to her. She takes it.

"Mike Logan," he says.

"Carolyn Barek," she replies, and there it is. The beginning of a partnership.

She eats in the car, and this prompts a conversation about food of all things. They're getting to know each other, slowly. And she's glad, because she's never really liked working with people she doesn't know.

"So," she says, when there's a lull in the conversation. "What'd Mrs. Logan make for her boy?"

And the fleeting, pained look that she sees in his eyes is hard to miss. But she says nothing, wondering if she's finally crossed the tentative lines between them. After a while, he speaks.

"Rum punch," he says, in a nonchalant way, that makes her wonder if he's kidding, but something about that way he says it tells her that she isn't.

And it bothers her, because suddenly, it hits her that she knows exactly what he means.

"You ever wonder what makes a cop go wrong?" he asks, and the question startles her, because she hadn't expected it. They're sitting in the squad room after the close of their second case together, and he's got a look on his face that says he wants to talk, but at the same time, he doesn't.

"A sense of entitlement," she says, finally. "They think they deserve something, or everything, and when they don't get it, they go for what will give it to them."

He shakes his head. "Damn profiler," he says, but there's a note of some sort of partner's affection that's there, so she ignores him.

"You grew up on a beat," she says, slowly. "Department means a lot to you, doesn't it?"

He nods, without looking her in the eye. "It does," he mumbles, almost inaudibly. "I hate thinking that some guys being stupid can just…"

"Make us all look bad?" she asks, quietly, and he nods again.

"Yeah," he says. "I don't get it. We try so hard to protect this damn city, and yet it screws us over time and time again…"

"So it doesn't surprise you that some of us go wrong," she says, more of a question than a statement. He sighs.

"Honestly, no."

It's the four of them together this time, and a high-profile case that's got the entire city on the edge of its seat. He finds it sick because he doesn't think people should be interested in this sort of thing, and at the same time, he's not surprised: the city's always looking for something new.

"You all right?" she asks, after they leave Deakins' office, because someone's called him out on various things he's done over his career. He smirks at her.

"Yeah, I'm fine," he says. "Load of crap, the lot of it. Most of it's old, anyway." He pauses, and gives her a sideways glance. "Thanks."

"For what?"

"Saying what you did."

And there's silence for a moment, and then she informs him that she was only saying what she saw, and she didn't see anything inappropriate, only a cop using the 'powers of persuasion' or however it was that she puts it. He shakes his head at her, and they call it good.

That night, he talks her into letting him take her out for dinner, because even though she told him they were good, he still feels like he owes her.

Defense attorneys are among the most awful people in the world, she thinks, after she watches her fellow lady detective close to tears on the stage. She looks at Goren, but he says nothing, looks at Logan and isn't surprised to find an incensed look on her partner's face.

"Son of a bitch," he mutters, "If I could get away with it…" And he doesn't have to finish the sentence, because she knows what he means, and knows that Eames is gonna want to kick this guy's ass, too.

"Hell hath no fury like the Major Case Squad," she tells him, in a wry undertone, because it's true, and because they're controversial, sometimes, the four of them, and they aren't afraid to go after people they know have done wrong. He smirks at her.

"Damn straight."
And once again, she's reminded of why she likes being partnered with the odd one out. He never ceases to surprise her.

"You an only child?" he asks, and she shakes her head, because she isn't. Her parents had two sons before she came along.

"No," she says, "But then, neither of my brothers went and died on me. I wasn't born to take anyone's place.

And he snorts, because she's hit the nail exactly on the head. She knows exactly what he's getting at.

"I was an only child," he says, without looking at her. "Sometimes I wished I had siblings, but most of the time, I didn't."

And she knows why, and doesn't push him, and after a moment, he speaks again. "It's gotta suck, knowing you were only born because your parents lost their first child."

"Gives you a sense of them just going back to the drawing board, since the first time didn't work out," she says dryly. He chuckles, softly.

"Makes me wonder why people bother sometimes," he says, vaguely, and she gives him a sideways glance.

"You ever thought about it?" she asks. "Having kids, I mean?"

And he nods, because he has, and it bothers him sometimes, because he really does want it, but doesn't think it'll ever happen.

"Yeah," he says, quietly. "But you know me. I'm the eternal bachelor, remember?"

"Some people shouldn't be parents," she remarks, as they head back to the squad room. He looks at her, and nods.

"Couldn't agree more," he says, and then, "Talk about twisted. Wanting your own sister dead because she forgot to put a hat on a baby."

"I've seen stranger motives," she says, and knows that he has, too, from the way he smirks.

"People come up with the weirdest reasons for doing what they do," he says. "It's why they always get caught, you know."

"Because they get caught up in their own web of lies," she says. "Two sisters, headed off to prison, for completely different reasons, and yet one thing in common."

"You think she really did love that baby?" he asks. She sighs.

"Danielle, you mean?" she asks in reply, and when he nods, she goes on. "I think she did. Maybe not in an obvious way, maybe not in the right way, but…I think in some way, she really did. She couldn't have always seen him as a way to get money."

"And Claire?" he asks. She sighs again, and runs a hand through her hair.

"I think she did, too," she says, "But then, I think her desire to be a parent no matter what the cost got in the way."

He shakes his head. "You were right, Barek," he says. "Some people shouldn't be parents."

He remembers what it's like to be pushed around, to feel weak, and helpless, and he doesn't like it, because all it does is remind him of his childhood. So when the interrogation is over, and they've got their confession, he walks out.

He doesn't think that she'll follow him, but she does, and before he knows it, they're walking side by side.

"I hate this," he says, his voice coming more harshly than he'd meant it to. "I hate how people think the way they treat other people doesn't really affect them, and I hate seeing what people can become."

And she knows what he means, knows that he's been fighting his own demons for years, because she can read him clearly. "I see what you mean," she says, finally, uncertainly, not sure she really wants to know what his reaction will be, but he chuckles softly.

"Bet you do, profiler," he says, and there's that same partner's affection that's there every time he calls her something that would've otherwise been some sort of insult.

"It doesn't always come out like this, Logan," she says, quietly, after a moment's silence, and he looks at her, sideways.

"Name one person you know who hasn't gone the other way because of the way he was treated as a kid," he says, and doesn't expect the answer she gives.

"You," she says, simply, and they continue to walk.

"Cowboys and Indians," he says, again, when it's over and done with, and she rolls her eyes, because he's being rude, but at the same time, it makes sense. Jay Kendall had been playing both sides all along, and all it had done was result in his wife's murder.

"Guess this just goes to show that no one can have it both ways," she says, and he shakes his head at her.

"You're awful," he informs her, "But you do have a point."

"I hate dealing with politicians," she mutters, and he laughs, because he hates it, too.

"Last time I looked, you were the one who actually understood what Deakins meant by the whole flies and honey analogy," he says. She gives him an amused look.

"I really think you take pleasure in giving him headaches, Logan," she says. There is silence for a moment, and then he speaks, without looking at her, and muttering, so she can't really hear him, but somehow, she manages to figure it out.

"Wish you'd call me Mike," he says, and the amused look, which had disappeared for a moment comes back, because she suddenly feels like being annoying.

"Would you take a gun to me if I ever called you Mikey?" she asks, and when he glares at her, she laughs.

"Love does the strangest things to people," she says, as they sit in a restaurant after this last case they've worked, because she insisted on taking him out this time.
"I still can't get it straight," he replies. "She kills her daughter, so she can marry this guy people call 'Fearsome Phil', all because her daughter threatened to take him down."

"Like I said," she says, and takes a sip from her drink, "Love does strange things to people."

"You ever been in love like that?" he asks. "So much that you'd do anything for this person, no matter what it did to you?"

She looks away. "Once," she admits, softly, because it still hurts to think about it sometimes. He looks at her with raised eyebrows.

"Who was he?" he asks, and wonders if he's crossing the line, but she answers, anyway.

"One of the Feds I was working with, while I was stuck with them," she replies. "It was…good while it lasted, but…"
And she trails off, and he suddenly doesn't want to know, because he doesn't want to think about her hurting that way, doesn't want to think about her doing something for this guy, and all for nothing, because he just knows that she did do something for him, and then he left.

"For what it's worth, he's an idiot for leaving you," he says, and she offers up a faint smile.


"Never again," he tells her, as two uniforms take Lydia Wyatt away, because she's been nailed, and now she's freaking out at them, but he's ignoring her, and so is Carolyn, for the most part.

"I still think you should at least give it a chance," she replies. "You don't always have to see to believe."

"When you live in a world like this, seeing is believing," he says, and she shakes her head.

"Come on," she says, "We'll go for coffee."

And he follows her, because he can, and because he really does want to, and as they sit across from each other in a nearby coffee shop, he wonders if there could be more than this.

"How's the poison ivy doing?" she asks, smirking at him, and he rolls his eyes.

"It's going away," he says, "Thank goodness. It's starting to get on my nerves."

"Ground-up toadstools," she says, looking amused, and he shakes his head at her, because he knows she's quoting him, and she's doing it to get a laugh out of him, but it isn't working yet.

"Calamine lotion," he tells her, and she laughs, because the expression on his face as he says it is too good to pass up. She takes out her phone and snaps a picture of it.

"My new background," she tells him, and he rolls his eyes, chuckling.

He hits on her, and doesn't mean it, because he's reeling, and she knows it, so she leaves him there. And then he ends up getting hit on by someone else, but calls it a night, because something about the fleeting, hurt expression he'd seen in his partner's eyes had bothered him. He ends up talking to Olivet. But after that, he wanders.

And then he realizes that he knows where she lives because he's had to pick her up in the middle of the night before, for a scene, and so he goes, pushing the buzzer and hoping she'll answer. She does, in drowsy voice that makes him wish he knew that she didn't hate him right now.

"It's me," he says quietly, "Listen, Carolyn, I'm…I'm sorry, I shouldn't have said that to you, I…"

And she cuts him off, because she knows he's upset. "Come on up," she replies, and buzzes him in.

When he gets to her apartment, she's waiting for him. And they sit together, for what seems like forever, until he falls asleep, with his head in her lap, because somehow, they ended up that way while they were talking.

She runs idle fingers through his hair and thinks that she might just be in love again.

Neither one of them wanted to say goodbye, but they did, because they didn't have a choice. And now, they sit across from each other, because Deakins finally gave him an official desk, and he's taken it, and they haven't really talked about what happened the night he shot that undercover, but he doesn't want to push it.

Neither of them want to believe that their commanding officer is retiring, resigning, really, to be replaced by someone else. She looks at him, and motions out of the squad room. So they both rise to their feet, and go to some random restaurant, because they've been doing that lately, and he wonders why this is.

"So," she says, "The end of our first year. How does it feel?"

And he laughs, because he's heard rumors about her transferring out and they make him nervous, because he doesn't want her to leave him.

"Hell of a ride, no?" he asks, and then, "Would you do it again, if you could? With me?"

And she looks at him, and nods, without saying a word, and by the time they leave the restaurant, they're both in good moods, and they walk, because they can, and because she's finally gotten him to agree that they don't necessarily drive everywhere.

And when he finally takes her home, she tugs him back when he goes to leave, and kisses him, because the rumors are true, and she doesn't know when she's going to see him again.