Title: 'Mi elección' - meaning my choice.

Author: Jodie (adorelo)

Spoilers: Season 5. If you don't want to know what has happened between the characters then don't read this yet!

A/N: I haven't written anything in a while, so I would appreciate any feed back to let me know how I am getting on. An episode of the X files inspired this, Scullys talk about the paths in our lives in the episode: 'All things' in season 7. I sat down and typed, this is the result. I hope you like.

I'd like to say a special thank you to Lady Aracne who has quiet seriously reviewed ever single one of my CSI Miami stories! Love you lots! Go read the stuff, it's great!

There seem to be choices everywhere around us. And it is strange to think that the decisions we make, the paths we choose, ultimately change our lives. But many a time, I wonder if the paths we choose are there because of our own making or ones that we stumble onto blindly, seemingly endless in their length and distance. But do the outcomes of our lives depend on the paths we choose, or are they simply different ways to the same predetermined termination? If that is so, the decisions we make rely solely on our previous choices, the lessons we have learnt and the mannerisms we have come to adopt.

If our lessons shape our lives, then who are we to question the events that come up? Do they matter, or are they just another path, another road to the same conclusion? If this is so, then why question the future if we are powerless to change it.

The things I have learnt, seen and experienced so far have taught me to be strong. I am a woman in a mans world, more specifically, a working mans world. It is bad enough having to make decisions at work, when every set of eyes is watching you, just waiting for a slip up when the big critical voice can come down on you like a tone of bricks. Naughty, naughty. Of course, they can't fire you based on your gender, this is the 21 century, but they can sure as hell make your life difficult. The sarcastic comments, the 'overlooking' for a promotion. Which is why I work, probably harder than most, to make sure I have every persons respect, every base covered. I am good at my job. There is no questioning that, but in my field it wouldn't matter if I could tell who the killer was just by stepping into a crime scene. It wouldn't matter if I was wonder woman.

So I worked hard. I smile, every dam day, and they love it. They love seeing a woman who is good at her job, who commands attention without saying a word, and I can't say I don't like it too. I have their respect. And I love it.

It is easy to become too caught up in it. Be a worker, a cop, a scientist and forget your femininity. I have been doing that a lot recently. I can't remember my last date, but I am sure it was a disaster. I can't remember the last time a man looked at me in 'that way'. They may have done, I'm just so caught up in everything else that I miss it.

Then it all came at once. Like a tidal wave and knocked me off my feet. Jake came back in to my life and Eric, God Eric, smiled and dam well floored me. I can't explain it. The scientist in me, of course, is rationally telling me I'm horny and it is purely a physical thing that I am suddenly attracted to both of these men. But the woman in me is demanding her voice back. And I am powerless to refuse her.

Jake broke my heart. Fact. I would tell any other woman she was crazy for even giving him a second thought. Fact. Jake was gorgeous. Fact. My mind and body (yes and hormones) were all suddenly caught up in the notion that he was back. He was back and I looked good. And he looked good. And suddenly I didn't care that he had hurt me before, it was like my first kiss, I was terrified but dam, did it feel good. I had to wonder, and the worry remains with me, whether he was interested in me as a person, or if it was because I was blond and played with guns.

Despite this, I enjoyed the power, he wanted me and suddenly I was in the driving seat. I called the shots. I could have him, it wasn't like before when he turned my into a pile of mush whenever I saw him. I was in control, and we all know how much I love my control.

But the there was Eric. God help me. I don't know what has been happening recently, or why there is suddenly so much tension whenever we are in the same room. Its like a switch has been flicked somewhere and I am suddenly painfully aware of how much I want him. But he was my friend, my colleague.

Some may call what we have love. And I suppose it is in a way. I've known him for, what six years, working with him everyday, becoming closer. We quickly established a friendship, flirting every now and then to keep ourselves sane from the pressure of the job. For a while, the majority of the lab thought there was something between us, we liked it, smiling whenever someone brought it up. But then Tim died. And we fell apart.

I'd always had a soft spot for Eric, even in the beginning when we first started working together, we had been closer than the others. We understood one another on a much deeper level and it was strange to be that close to someone and yet not be romantically involved. I had prided our friendship, loved it. Loved him. But we lost out friend and with him, apart of each other.

He shut off from me completely, laughing at my vain attempts cheer him up with mirthless chuckles. I know he was trying, Speed was his best friend and he hurt more than he dared admit, even to me. I though he was improving, he was defiantly happier, then he lost his badge and the whole toothing story came out. I have to admit that hurt. I was disappointed in him as a colleague, but hurt as a friend. Jealous? No I wasn't. Much.

He told me once that Hagen wasn't good enough for me. I'd argued, of course, that Eric didn't know anything about our relationship (if you could even call it that) but in truth I knew he didn't treat me right. He was jealous and angry, not something that goes well with a woman who rarely expresses her feelings. He continually accused me of being unfaithful, each and every time I smiled at another man, particularly Eric.

Eric, again, stays in my mind. I love our relationship, our friendship. He was my best friend and I was terrified of losing that, I told him and he had smiled, understanding, as usual, in a way I could never explain. Then the tension exploded, I'd kissed him, only on the cheek but still, the look we shared before I left said more than any words could have. I was suddenly shy around him, and I swear I saw him blush.

Then I got some glass in my finger, it was nothing really but the concern that flooded from him had nearly overwhelmed me. He was so gentle, but his eyes reflected passion. I remember his nervous chuckle as I spoke his name, more breathless than I intended.

I can't begin to explain the guilt I felt knowing Eric had seem Jake kiss me. In the elevator I had to close my eyes, look away from him, he looked so lost and I didn't understand him. Sure there was a sudden tension but he had never acted that way around me before. I'd gone on dates, and he'd smiled and wished me a good time, he'd never looked so hurt.

He'd always been my life line. He knew how to play me and what surprised me most was, I let him, I liked it. He knew to stay back when my walls were down, only coming forward to offer comfort when I give him the signs he so surely picks up on. He can tell when I am sad or angry or scared just by looking at me and if it were any other guy I'd be terrified at that loss of power. But this was Eric, I could read him just as well as he could read me. I remember the times we stood together, looking at each other saying random words like 'yeah' and 'I know' with no other connectives to go with them. People would walk past and look strangely at us, not understanding how we could communicate through a few simple words and intense stares. It was normal to us. I could tell what he wanted to say before the words even entered his brain. I'd never questioned it.

At home, I tried to relieve my tension by sinking in a bubble bath. The smell of jasmine assaulted my senses as I allowed my eyes to droop. Deciding that falling asleep in a bath was not the best option given my current state of confusion, I pulled the plug and stepped out. I dried my body carefully and applied lotion. I needed to think, I'd been doing nothing but all day but I really needed to concentrate my thoughts.

It was then I saw the blinking light on my machine. I pressed the button down, expecting my father. I was surprised to hear the raspy voice that filled the room.

"Hey Cal, it's me. Look.. Erm… I need to talk to you…I...err… I think… I feel.. Oh.. Look Calleigh, just call me Ok…. Thanks again for everything...I'll…err.. I'll talk to you later Ok? Bye…"

I smiled suddenly. Feeling an intense wave of release flow through my body. Impulsively, I picked up the phone, the digits feeling strange under my fingers though the number was refreshingly familiar. The mechanical sound burned my ears, mocking me with its incessantness. I heard a click. His voice

"Hello?" he sounded uneven, like he had just been asleep. I looked at the clock and realized for the first time how late it was. I hadn't noticed the time go by.

"Hey," I spoke softly, hearing an intake of breath that made my next words unnecessary, "It's me…"

I smiled at his sigh of happiness.

I had made my choice.

E/N: I'll leave you to decide who it is. I would love to hear your opinions, if you have the time to spare. J