A/N You guys are seriously amazing! Here's the last chapter, though. I wasn't completely satisfied with the way I ended it- the last part of this was totally cheesy! If anyone has any improvements, let me know and I'll repost! Thanks for reading!
Disclaimer: For the final time, I don't own anything to do with Cold Case. Can I get that on a t-shirt?
Scotty was alone in the bed when he awoke the next morning. He had known when he stepped into her house that whatever would happen between them would be a booty call, a way of making the other feel better. But at some point, and Scotty wasn't exactly sure when, that had changed. Now all I gotta do is convince Lil.
Sliding out from under the sheets, he rummaged around for his boxer shorts, pulling them on. The male detective headed out in search of his partner, half expecting to find her already gone. When he found her sitting on the sofa, wearing panties and his shirt, Scotty couldn't help the feeling of relief that stirred in his chest. As he appeared in the doorway, Lilly looked up at him.
"What happens the next time?" she whispered, "The next time someone hurts me?" Her voice broke.
Scotty sat down besides her, resting a gentle hand on the back of her neck.
"Let me stay, Lil. Let me be there," he replied quietly. She leant into his side, closing her eyes and resting her head on his shoulder.
"I don't know if I can, Scotty," she whispered. He placed a soft kiss to her temple.
"Trust me with this, Lil."
An angry tear slid down her cheek, and Lilly hastily wiped it away.
"I hate myself for not being able to do it. I had the gun…and I couldn't pull the trigger. I hesitated, Scotty!" she sobbed, "I hesitated…because I didn't want to be like him."
The male detective moved around to kneel in front of her, taking her thin hands in his.
"Lil, look at me." After a moment, her teary eyes managed to find his, searching his face for something.
Scotty gave her hands a gentle squeeze.
"I swear, Lilly, you ain't nothin' like him. Whatever he said to you, up in that attic, it ain't true."
"But you don't even know what he said," she whispered in reply.
Sliding one hand out of hers, he brought it up her arm to her cheek, smoothing his thumb over her cheekbone.
"I don't need to, Lil. I already know that you're perfect to me."
Lilly stared at their entwined hands. Looking up after a while, she gave him a small smile.
"I heard you. What you said to George." Scotty smoothed his thumb over her cheekbone again, fascinated by the soft skin under his fingers.
"I meant it, Lil. I'd have killed him if he hurt you."
The blonde detective shook her head, blue eyes staring off into space. When she spoke, Scotty felt tears prick the back of his eyelids, angry with himself for not being able to protect her.
"It was so dark…" she began, her voice trailing off into nothing. His hand returned to the back of her neck, feeling her slim frame trembling against him.
"He said he was going to kill me. Said I was going to die."
As tears crept down her cheeks, Scotty didn't hesitate to pull Lilly towards him, holding her tight against his chest as she sobbed silently.
"Hey, it's OK. I got you," he soothed, fighting back his own tears, "I got you."
"I just wanted to give up, Scotty. I was so tired."
Lilly couldn't remember the last time she cried like this, let alone the last time she cried in a man's arms. Much to her surprise, Scotty didn't shy away, choosing instead to wrap his arms around her. As if they had taken on a life of their own, her hands crept up his bare chest to clutch at his neck, clinging to him like a child clings to a blanket.
"I don't want to die," she sobbed.
After that, she didn't cry for long. Pulling out of his arms, and taking the expected step back, Lilly looked away, desperately trying to explain to herself why she suddenly felt cold and empty.
"Sorry," she whispered. Scotty released a sigh.
"Me too," he replied quietly.
Standing and moving further away, Lilly struggled to keep upright, wanting nothing more than to sink to the ground in exhaustion. Staring at the floor, she waited for the panic to set in. That was when she realised that it wasn't going to come…because they both wanted last night to happen.
Realisation made the blonde detective's eyes widen. No wonder he's closing up. He's expecting the Classic Lilly Rush.
"I don't regret what we did, you know," she said softly, a shy smile gracing her lips. Scotty glanced across at her in surprise. Maybe gettin' Lil to let me in ain't gonna be that hard after all.
Lilly shook her head, tentatively moving to sit back beside him. She nervously bit her bottom lip.
"No." The male detective failed to hide a grin, earning a confused stare from his partner. Scotty turned her face towards him.
Panic pushed at her senses. Lilly felt the slight colour drain from her face. Yeah, there it is. Right on cue.
"No, Scotty…" He interrupted gently, his voice calming.
"I was goin' to ask if I could have my shirt back."
Lilly closed her eyes, laughing slightly.
"Scotty," she sighed. He chuckled, kissing the top of her head.
"We can do this, Lil. I promise," he said softly, and only a deaf man could miss the honesty in his voice. She felt some of her walls melt away.
"I ain't ever wanted anythin' as much as I want this, Lil. I know…I've been an idiot, but…I shoulda told you, an' I guess…" Scotty paused, before sliding her into his lap. Lilly froze, her body tensing under his hold.
"Lilly, you're the bravest goddamn person I know, an'…"
He was silenced by her lips brushing curiously over his. Blinking, the male detective trailed off. Lilly smiled shyly, decision made, and rested her forehead against his.
"Will you stay with me?" she whispered. Scotty frowned.
"What? Now?" Lilly couldn't help the soft laugh that slipped out from her lips.
"Now. And…" A look of uncertainty and apprehension appeared on her face. What if he changes his mind? What happens if he ups and leaves, like everybody else?
Her partner, having realised exactly what she was asking, smiled reassuringly, his arms circling her slim frame.
"Say it," he requested softly.
Lilly took a deep breath, beginning to relax.
"Will you fix me if I get broken?" Scotty had to strain to hear her barely audible words, but as he did, a grin spread from his lips, and he placed a soft kiss to his partner's cheek.
She looked him in the eyes, desperate for that confirmation. Blue eyes met dark brown, and Lilly knew, that in that one instant, all of her walls had crumbled, leaving her open to Scotty's penetrating gaze. The blonde detective had never believed in God, which it is to say she had no previous reason to. But now, instinctively, as if guided by some higher power, she leant forward, kissing him deeply.
After a while, Lilly pulled back, smiling uncertainly. Scotty stared at her in wonder.
"Can I have it back?" he asked breathlessly.
"Have what back?" she replied in confusion.
"My shirt." His partner arched an eyebrow, the light in her eyes dazzling. That's Lilly, Scotty thought in astonishment. The real Lilly that I thought I'd never see again.
The blonde detective nestled her cheek into his chest, her smile fading.
"No. Not until I've completely forgotten," she said seriously. Scotty heard his breath hitch. Is that…is she…? She ain't never gonna forget. Does she…is she…?
"Lil?" She released a shaky sigh, feeling more tears appear. I was right, she thought, I can't remember the last time I cried this much.
"It doesn't matter…" Scotty raised her chin to look at her.
"Blink," he commanded quietly. Her eyes widened.
"Blink," her partner repeated firmly. Uncertainly, Lilly slowly blinked. When she opened her eyes again, Scotty nodded, sliding his hands down to hold hers.
"Do it again."
"Just do it. Please."
The female detective did as she was asked.
"That's how you know," Scotty whispered.
"That I ain't leavin' without fightin' you tooth and claw." His warm breath on her cheek was driving her crazy, as it had done the night before.
"What does blinking have to do with it?" she asked shakily. Scotty placed a gentle kiss to her lips.
"Blink." This time, Lilly did it without hesitation, her eyelids closing and fluttering open. She looked at him, the question written in her eyes. Scotty rested his forehead against hers.
"Every time you open your eyes, I'm gonna be there. No matter what."
If she hadn't already been sitting down, Lilly would have swooned. She rested her fingertips on the smooth skin at the base of his throat. Maybe there was hope left in her world. Maybe, she thought, I don't have to do this alone.
"Can I keep your shirt?" she asked in a soft voice. Scotty grinned, pulling her into another tight hug.
"As long as you need it."
Aww! At first, this story was gonna be so much more...angsty? But it turned out different. Oh well. You know what comes next. Please leave me a review, as this is the last chapter, and you love me? Thanks!