A/N: Don't ask where this came from. Call it a midnight drabble.


Control! That was it; that was her problem.

She loathed not having control. And here was a situation she couldn't control. Yes, she could mask it- and that was another of her more potent abilities- but she couldn't rid her own mind of it all, however much she tried to. It bled into her consciousness at the least appropriate moments; just when she needed to be at her best. Sam couldn't stand it. Sometimes she wanted to explode and just have done with it. Sometimes she did. Sometimes she took a minor problem at work, enlarged it and took her fury out on Kezia or Mickey or… or Jo. Those were the times she loathed herself most- when she took it out on Jo. After all, very little of this was actually the brunette's fault.

Had she initiated any sort of inappropriate conduct? No, not as such, but she had inspired it. That was the trouble. Sam had thought… no, she'd known that she was completely organised before DC Masters had come along and dissolved her notions of right and wrong. Here she was, in the middle of the night when she should rightly be fast asleep, awake and contemplating the day ahead because she needed to control it.

She needed to control how she first came into contact with Jo. Usually, she remedied it by going to work as early as possible. Then she was established. If there was contact to be made, Jo would have to make it. And Jo rarely did, because she knew as much as anyone that Samantha Nixon, DI, was not to be disturbed unless it was vitally necessary. It was an image of herself Sam liked. It gained her a fair bit of leeway at work. Some days she barely saw a soul, and some days she barely saw Jo, which she considered to be both positive and negative.

Therein rested her fundamental issue. She hadn't a clue what she wanted really. She was rigid in her opinions. She had no objection to homosexuality, but that wasn't her! No, she was straight. Utterly and completely straight. She would've argued that fact until she was blue in the face until she'd met and got to know Jo Masters. But… No. Whatever she thought she felt, whatever she might or might not want, she was certain she couldn't do it. It wasn't in her remit. It was unprofessional. It was completely alien to her. And it was wrong. There it was- a triple threat and she hated the fact that the finality of that statement never swayed her. Because sometimes, though she barely admitted it to herself, she did allow her mind to stray and it hurt a little.

It hurt because she sometimes thought Jo had the same feelings towards her. Sometimes their eyes met, and they seemed to be perfectly in-tune for just a second or so. But that was an impossibility in itself. Sam knew- and she'd had a lot of experience building her up to this conclusion- that she was very unique. Phil couldn't come anywhere close to understanding her. Stuart tried less and understood less. She didn't kid herself for a moment that she would ever find someone who truly accepted her and wanted to be with her regardless. And if Jo did by some miracle happen to be that person… Well, it was irrelevant anyway. Sam refused to let herself feel. At least, she refused to let herself publicly feel.

Sam wanted simplicity. She wanted to come into work of a morning, catch some criminals, go home and go to bed. A social life was a nice accessory but not essential to her life. She loved her job. Maybe too much, but that was just the way she was. There was no room for anyone else in her life. Even if she were to start a relationship she knew her life was already too fully occupied.

Occasionally, though, like now when she was watching the shadow her alarm clock cast on the wall, she felt an overwhelming sense of loneliness. Thinking of Jo, thinking of a woman who she secretly adored, didn't soothe her as such, but for a few priceless moments in the middle of the night she felt more than an object. Perhaps she was a human being with real emotions after all. A terrifying thought, and one which made her zip herself up tighter the next morning. She wouldn't allow Jo or anyone to see how she was feeling, or the uncertainty that plagued her. More than that, she couldn't allow Jo to see it. Because, if by some chance Jo did feel remotely the same, then they were forced into a trickier situation. Fantasy was all well and good, but reality was more than frightening. Reality sapped any semblance of control out of her hands, and if there was one thing Sam knew she could not advocate, that was it.