A/N I realised the only major Cold Case event I haven't touched on is the shooting. So this takes place when Lilly is still in the hospital, but is able (although unadvised!) to get out of bed. Enjoy! Oh, and I got a new cat.

Disclaimer: Except the nurse, I own nothing to do with Esac Dloc.

A nurse poked her head around the curtain.

"Detective? You've got a visitor." Lilly barely glance dup from her magazine, folding her legs underneath her.

"I'm busy. Tell them to come back tomorrow."


As Scotty stepped around the curtain, Lilly's eyes widened.

"Hey!" she squeaked in surprise. He studied her carefully, his smile fading. Lilly had exchanged the hospital gown for jeans and an oversized Philly PD t-shirt. Her left arm was hidden by a sling, causing Scotty to wince slightly.

"How are you feeling?" he asked seriously. Lilly shrugged her good shoulder.

"I'm OK." They fell into an uncomfortable silence. The blonde detective picked at the covers on the bed.

"I didn't think you'd come to see me," she said softly.

Scotty ran a hand through his hair.

"Uh…yeah, I, uh…" His partner shuffled over on the bed, allowing him to sit opposite her. "Lil, I've been doin' a lot of, uh, thinkin'. And, uh…"

Lilly frowned, her blue eyes fixed on his face.

"You're kind of scaring me." He chuckled slightly at the thought that after everything she's been through, his disjointed ramblings were what earned an admission of fear.

The male detective took a deep breath.

"Sorry. We've been partners…friends, for nearly five years. An'…an' I don't think I've ever told you…told you how sorry I am."

Until then, Lilly had been following his words carefully. Now, however, she frowned.

"Sorry for what?" Scotty failed to lift his eyes from the bed cover.

"For always screwin' up."

Lilly couldn't find anything to say. Her mind was a blur, trying to catch up. Scotty took her silence as a stonewall, and hurriedly climbed off the bed.

"I, uh, jus' wanted you to know…that, uh, these last five years? These last five years, with you, have, uh, been the best five years of my life."

He yanked back the curtain, leaving his partner alone. Blinking, it took her a few moments to realise that he was gone. Lilly quickly unplugged herself from the machines, sliding herself painfully off the bed.

Seeing the woman exiting the cubicle, a nurse hurried over, trying to push Lilly back into her bed.

"Detective, you should not be out of bed!"

"I really need to do this. Please."

Recognising the stubborn look in her patients eyes, the nurse stepped aside in defeat, and watched as Lilly hurried after Scotty's retreating form.

"Hey!" she called. Her partner turned, and seeing her there, hurried back towards her.

"Lil! You're gonna hurt yourself!"

"Then you shouldn't have just taken off like that."

"Look, Lil…"

"No, Valens. You do not always screw things up." He gave her an anguished look.

"Jesus, Lil! I got you shot!"

"No, I got me shot. You saved my life."

"But I wasn't quick enough. I couldn't…"

"Scotty, you saved me. I said 'hey', and you came."

He was silent for a moment.

"I was savin' me too," he said in a low voice, "'cause I can't think of a world where you ain't in it, Lil." When Lilly didn't reply, Scotty opened his mouth to speak again, but found a finger covering his lips. Satisfied that he would hold his tongue, she withdrew her hand.

"Scotty," she began, almost shyly, "I'm going to do something that I really haven't thought about doing, because it could change everything. OK?" He raised an eyebrow, nodding. Lilly smiled, a real smile that he hadn't seen for ages, and stepped towards him.

She slid an arm around his waist, resting her cheek against his chest. Scotty felt his breath catch in his throat. He fought the temptation to hug her tightly, to squeeze her, to never let her go. Instead, he settled for holding his partner as close as her sling would allow.

Lilly felt the steady thump of his heart, allowing herself to get lost in the solid rhythm. Scotty rested his chin on the top of her head, cradling her slim body against his.

"Thanks for saving me," she whispered.

Chuckling, he pulled back to look in her eyes, sweeping a lock of blonde hair from her face.

"Right back at ya."

I know, I know. It's fluff. It's clouds. It's cotton wool. Hell, it's even cotton candy. But just leave me a review. You know you want to...