Title: Solid Ground

Author: Marcalbabe (Anne)

Summarry: This story takes place back in 2002. I always hated the way the writers just dismissed the potential of CJ/Bridget. So, this story is going to go to what these two characters could've been together.

A/N: I actually wrote a few fanfics for them back in the day, so this story will include alot of the plotlines from them, incase anyone recoginizes it. It'll involve CJ finding out about Deacon/Brooke, and it'll involve addiction along the way also. Well, enough spoilers...onto the story!

"Morning, Ceej!" Bridget Forrestor called out cheerily, as she walked in the front doors of Insomnia.

"Oh, hey, Budge." CJ greeted back, looking up from the stocking he was doing. "You certainly seem happier, than you were last night."

"Yeah, well..." Bridget trailed off. "I didn't mean to get so upset last night, C.J. I'm sorry."

"No, don't be sorry." C.J waved her apology off. "I'm sorry actually."

"For what?" Bridget asked curiously.

"Well, you started to open up to me last night." C.J, walked around the bar, and took two chairs down. He sat in one, and motioned for Bridget to take the other, which she did. "You said that Deacon cheated on you. I was pretty insensitive about it. While, it didn't come as a shock to me, it's clear that it's really shook you up."

"Yeah," The pain returned to Bridget's eyes, and C.J felt bad for even bringing it up. "it's pretty much killed me."

"I'm sorry for that." C.J. offered. "You clearly loved him, and trusted him. I'm sorry that he let you down." C.J. reached across the table, and gently covered Bridget's hand with his own. "I'm also sorry that I let you down last night. I should've been a better friend, and I wasn't."

"No, C.J..." Bridget shook her head. "You were right, okay? I blinded myself about the two of them for so long, that I never even saw what was so stupidly infront of my face."

"You know the woman that Deacon cheated on you with, right?"

"Yeah." Bridget answered. "I know her, alright."

"Bridget, who is she?" C.J. gently asked her.

Bridget stood up, and walked over to the bar.

"Don't do that." C.J said. "Don't push me away. I just want to know, so I can understand. I'm your friend, Bridget. I care about you."

Bridget turned around, and held a bottle of Vodka in her hand. "You see this?"

"Yeah..." CJ frowned. "Budge, you're not thinking of drinking while you're working, are you?"

"You misunderstand." Bridget sighed. "Everytime I think about that woman, the woman who slept with my husband...I want to take this bottle and crawl into it and never come back out."

"I used to feel like that too." C.J responded. "After Becky died, I felt like I had nothing left. I used to just want to crawl into a bottle and never come back out."

"What stopped you?" Bridget asked.

"The only thing that stopped me from throwing my life away are my parents. They're my family, and my support system. They got me through the most difficult time in my life." C.J. answered. "Without them...well, you'd probably be seeing a drunk CJ, instead of a stable, sober one."

"Yeah, well..." Bridget just shook her head, and began stocking.

"What?" CJ quesitoned. "What were you gonna say?"

Bridget turned back around. "It's just that...you lost one person." At CJ's confused look, she continued. "Not to minimize your pain over that or anything, but I lost two. I lost two of the most important people in my life. They were both just wrapped around my universe, and now...now they're nothing. I have nothing."

Bridget turned back around, and continued working.

CJ, infuriated threw his towel that he was wiping the chairs off with down, and stalked over to her. He grabbed her arm and spun her around to face him.

"You have nothing?!" CJ repeated incrediously. "You have parents who love you! You have a brother, you have money, God, you even have my mother! You have me!"

A few tears streamed down Bridget's face. "You don't even know the half of it."

"Budge..." CJ wiped her tears away. "You've got to know you have me."

Bridget just nodded.

"What? You don't believe me?" CJ looked at her helplessly.

"It's just that..." Bridget ran a hand through her hair. "You didn't even want me here to begin to with."

CJ sighed with regret. He wished he'd treated her better when she first came here...

"I'm sorry for that. I wasn't fair to you then. I looked at you and saw a Forrestor." CJ said with regret. "Now, I look at you and see a friend. I see someone who's really caring and wonderful. I also see someone who's been just as hurt as I've been. I care about you, Bridget. I care about you alot."

Those words gave Bridget the courage to tell him something, she wasn't ready for anyone to know.

"You were wrong before." Bridget said.

"About what?" CJ asked.

"You said I had my parents." Bridget said.

"Well, don't you?" CJ was confused now. Did she and her parents have a falling out or something, he wondered.

"I have a father." Bridget replied. "I don't have a mother. My mother's dead."

"What?!" CJ's eyes were filled with horror. "What happened to your mom, Bridget?" CJ walked over to her and hugged her. "She's dead?"

"No, no...nothing happened." Bridget sighed with regret. "I'm sorry." Bridget apologized. "I should've been more clear. She's not dead in the physical sense, but she's dead to me. Dead to me as in, I never wanna see her for as long as I live. I hate her, Ceej. I hate my mother."

"God," CJ pulled back to look into her eyes, and he saw that she meant it. She was serious. "what did Brooke do to you?"

"She slept with my husband." Bridget confessed.

CJ looked up at her stunned, than broke out into a laugh. "No, seriously Budge...what'd she do?"

"She slept with my husband." Bridget repeated firmly, her words slow and deliberate.

"You're not joking, are you?" CJ asked her gently.

Bridget just shook her head. "I wish I were."

"Oh my God." CJ sunk into one of the chairs, and covered his face in disgust.

"She's the reason that I no longer have a marriage. She's also the reason, why I decided to come here to work." Bridget said. "I want nothing to do with her ever again. I want to build a life for myself that doesn't include her, or that cheating ex of mine."