A/N: Sam and Jo... but more friendship than anything else! Don't ask me why I didn't go further, I just liked it as it was.
If she was honest, she'd seen it coming even before Jack had called her in for a quiet word. The second the CID doors had been kicked open by an irate blonde with a cast on her arm she'd had a flash, some kind of a premonition of this moment. And it turned out that her imagination hadn't been working overtime. It really was going to be this bad.
Jo cleared her throat when her knock on the open door wasn't acknowledged. 'Guv?'
Samantha Nixon looked up from trying to negotiate her mouse with her left hand. 'What is it?'
'Um, the DCI sent me, said since I've got nothing on could I give you a hand.'
'Well, thanks, Jo,' Sam said dismissively. 'But I can cope.'
As her superior reached for a pen from the far end of her desk, she suddenly realised she wouldn't be able to use it. Not pressing the issue, Jo simply leaned against the door frame until Sam sighed heavily and looked to her.
'Are you any good at dictation?'
'I'm sure I can cope,' she answered. 'Besides, I do work under you, don't I?'
When Sam rolled her eyes, she moved fully into the office, making to close the door behind her. 'Oh, don't do that! When I went to take a file to Gina this morning it took me five minutes to get out.'
Jo tried suppressing the smile that sprung to her lips but to no avail. 'Sorry.'
'No, I'll remember that,' Sam warned.
'Yeah, I don't doubt it.' She closed the door anyway. 'Look, I don't know about you but I can do without laughing boy out there watching me all day.'
'Mmm, how'd you guess?' Sitting down, she questioned, 'So where's Neil?'
'In court all day.' Apparently the comment about Stuart had made the DI's self-consciousness rocket: she frowned as she raised her head to glance out into the main CID office. 'Could you shut the blinds for me?'
Ignoring the opening for a smart comment, Jo merely complied with the request and sat back down. 'Where do you want me to start?'
Sam seemed surprised by something but after a second, she nodded to the screen. 'I'll read if you get a pen.'
Close to an hour later, Jo was forced to interrupt Sam's monotonous speech to stretch out her legs under the table, all too aware that she touched the DI's feet as she did so. Not wanting that to appear at all deliberate, she quickly said, 'Sorry, muscles seized up.'
Smiling, Sam rubbed her forehead. 'Tell me about it. I've got five weeks of sitting in this chair.'
'Chance for a rest?' Jo offered mildly.
'Chance to go completely insane,' Sam clarified, opening her desk drawer and pulling out her purse. 'Do you want to get us some coffees?'
Taking the money, she smiled briefly then went out of the office. When she came back a few minutes later, she found the DI attempting to tease her finger under the edge of the cast. 'You shouldn't do that,' she warned, nudging the door closed with her foot then placing the coffees on the desk.
Caught, Sam then shrugged. 'It itches.'
'It will do. I broke my leg once in school. My doctor told me not to scratch it whatever I did.'
'Is there some sort of moral to that story?' Samantha queried, reaching tentatively for her drink. 'Where's my change?'
Rolling her eyes, Jo pulled it out of her pocket and dropped it on the desk. 'All twenty pence of it. And,' she went on, 'there was no moral.'
'You're not going to tell me you scratched it, your leg dropped off and you've been walking around on a prosthetic ever since?'
Laughing slightly, Jo shook her head. 'Nope. Just did as I was told.'
After a moment, Sam exhaled. 'It still itches.'
'You're a copper! You've had people with knives at your throat; pretty frequently, I might add…'
'Oi,' her superior interrupted mildly. 'What's that supposed to mean?'
'No comment,' Jo answered, picking up her own hot plastic cup. As she brought it up to her mouth she saw the indignant look on her colleague's face and smiled. 'What?'
'I thought you were supposed to be helping me?'
'Does that absolutely stop me from laughing at you?'
'It does if you know what's good for you.'
'Yes, Ma'am,' she said, mock-saluting then resting back in her chair as she questioned, 'So, what happened?'
Sam seemed to consider her for a few moments. 'Do you want the official version that I told the DCI or the truth?'
Jo shrugged. 'What was the cover-story?'
Eventually, Sam grinned sheepishly. 'I told Jack that the bathroom door flew back at me and caught my arm.'
'And the real story's more embarrassing than that?' Jo queried, raising an eyebrow.
'I was drunk,' the DI admitted. After sipping from her plastic mug, she continued, 'I got up in the middle of the night, couldn't find where I was going. I bashed my head on the banister, fell down the stairs and knocked myself out cold. When I came round I'd landed on my arm; that was in a right mess. Hence the cast; hence… this.'
Keeping the smile from her face, Jo nodded. 'That's not all that bad.'
'Please, Jo, I'm supposed to set an example.'
'Yeah, and you do,' she argued, moving to place her coffee back on the desk. 'And you do it. But you can't be a saint all the time.'
'Let me guess, I'm meant to trust you because you know?'
She shook her head. 'No way. Just my humble opinion, that's all. Feel free to ignore me.'
'I will,' Sam answered, though a soft grin played on her lips.
'Well, good,' Jo replied.
'Let's get back to it, shall we?'