"I can't believe she did that to us!" Sara Sidle stormed. "I mean how could she trust Keppler and not us!" She gulped down another shot.
Sitting on the bar stool next to her, Nick Stokes tried to calm his friend, although he was upset as well. Their supposed friend Catherine Willows had betrayed their trust by helping Keppler set up a fake crime scene.
After they'd solved the case, Sara had sped out the parking lot. Nick watched her feeling rather depressed. Getting into his truck he started home, but the neon glow a bar stopped him. He ordered a tall one and was about to gulp it down when he saw her. Sara turned and caught his gaze. Giving him a guilty smile she walked over.
"Hi ya stranger," Sara had said as she sat next to him. That had been over an hour and many drinks ago.
"If Gil were here she wouldn't have gotten away with it," Sara muttered.
"If Griss were here Keppler wouldn't be here. It wouldn't have happened in the first place," Nick corrected.
Sara started crying. Nick pulled her close. "Shhh darlin' what's wrong?" he asked.
"I scared him away didn't I?" She hiccupped. "He left because of me. He doesn't love me anymore, does he?"
Nick stared at her in confusion. "Griss didn't leave 'cause of you," he drawled with his heavy Texas accent. Sara pulled back, her eyes wide.
"Yes he did. He doesn't love me anymore," Sara insisted standing up. She tried to walk over towards the restroom, but she swayed and stumbled. Nick jumped up to help steady her, however, he was no better. Clinging to each other they unsuccessfully tried to stay standing. Laughing they fell into a hysterical heap on the floor.
"I think it's time for you two to leave. No more drinks," the bartender spoke up from behind the counter. Sara was still laughing and didn't hear, but Nick glanced up. "Cab?" he asked. The bartender nodded in understanding. Nick watched as he reached for a phone. Within minutes, the two friends were stumbling and swaying to their ride home.
"Where to?" the cabbie asked. "54 Evercrest Way" Sara spoke up.
Nick looked at her, and then back at the cabbie. "Forget that. Take us to 37 Mint Terrace Road." The driver shrugged and started the car.
"Hey!" Sara protested. "I was going home."
"Sar, my house is closer, and I have a spare room. Besides that's Griss's house."
"It's mine too. We've been living together for the past year," Sara announced.
Nick's mouth fell open.
Sara laughed. "You're so cute when you're shocked!"
Nick just kept staring trying to decide if she was too drunk to realize what she was saying or if she was telling the truth.
"I told you he left because of me." Then Sara leaned over and kissed Nick passionately. She gently laid her head against his shoulder.
"He doesn't realize what he lost," Nick whispered nibbling her ear.
Sara looked into his eyes. "How long?"
"What?" he asked.
"How long have you loved me?"
"I never sa…" Nick muttered.
"I can see it in your eyes,"
"Since I first saw you. When I was trapped in that box and never thought I'd see you again I the only thing I regretted was never telling you. I love you Sara Sidle, always have and always will."
"I love you too."
"Okay lovebirds we're here," the cabbie interrupted.
Sara stumbled out the door while Nick paid the man. They watched the cab drive away. Its red taillights glimmering in the dark night. Suddenly, Sara felt herself being picked up.
"NICK!" she screamed laughing. "Put me down!"
"No can do," he replied carrying her up the walk, stumbling and swaying all the way. Finally they reached the door. Sara reached for the handle and twisted it as Nick pushed her through the entrance.
He gently laid her on the sofa and tried to get up but Sara pulled him down. "Kiss me!" she demanded.
Nick didn't need a second invitation. After several minutes they both came up for air.
"Sara, darlin' are you sure I don't want to rush you," he asked.
"I love you, Nick. I don't want to wait. We've waited too long." That said she pulled him down again.
Nick woke to the bright afternoon sun shining brightly beaming on his face. He moaned and rolled over. He silently cursed as he felt something hard under is back. Sitting half-way up Nick turned to remove the offending object, expecting to be back in dreamland soon.
Instead, a gasp caught in his throat. He couldn't move, he couldn't breath. All he could think was 'Oh shit!'
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