A/N: Hello, my pretties! How have you all been? I have some good news and I have some great news. But first I want to take the time to thank everyone who reviewed 'Just Some Lady Lovin'.' I never expected so many positive reviews, so thank you so much!
Okay, so the good news (as you might already be able to tell) is that I have written a oneshot for your reading pleasure. You have the wonderful, beautiful Maggsie to thank for that, as she gave me the prompt that inspired this.
The even better news? Maggsie's prompt has inspired me to write more on 'Journey of a Lifetime' so a new update should be posted soon. Not in the next couple of days as I have my midterm exams, but very soon, I promise. Thank you all for being so patient with me.
Alright, read on!
Turning off the taps on her steaming hot bath, Catherine looked over her phone screen once more, reading the message she had written fifteen minutes before and not had the courage to send. Just get it over with, you chicken. She took a deep breath. This was it; the text message that could potentially change her life forever. She closed her eyes and pushed 'send.'
Somewhere deep within the confines of the lab, the dulcet sounds of someone's techno beat ringtone filled the air. Sara looked up from her microscope.
"Rick, your phone is going off."
Warrick shook his head beside her. "That's not my ring." They looked at each other and then to the phone vibrating on Greg's table. Without speaking, they simultaneously moved over to read the screen.
"It's a text message." Sara stated needlessly, her blood running cold as she read who it had come from.
"From Catherine?" Warrick questioned. "Isn't it her night off? Why would she be texting Greg?"
"Why would who be texting me?" Greg asked from the doorway.
"Catherine." Warrick arched an eyebrow.
Greg frowned. "Catherine's texting me? I thought it was her night off."
"It is." Sara said through gritted teeth.
Greg grabbed his phone and flipped it open. He read for a moment, flushed, looked down at his jeans and then snapped his phone shut, grinning from ear to ear.
Sara's eyes narrowed.
"What'd she say?" Warrick wanted to know.
"Oh, umm…just checking up on some results from last shift's case, yeah, just wanted to know how everything is coming along…"
Warrick rolled his eyes. "Yeah." He said slowly, "Right. C'mon, man, what'd she say?"
"I'm telling you, that is what she said." But Greg's grin was giving him away.
Sara shook her head. "It's not like it matters, could we move on please? Greg, we wanted you to take a look at these particulates."
"Isn't that Hodges' job now?"
"Well, we'll go to him if we absolutely have to. Can you look?"
Greg would have clicked his heels if he could, his smile was so big. "Not a problem. What have we got?"
Catherine sunk back in her bath, sighing with relief. Well, at least the hard part was over. Now she had the rest of the night to get ready and relax. She'd lounge in the bubbles for a bit and then she'd figure out what she was going to wear to her breakfast date.
Sara stalked into the break room, brooding over her empty cup. Why the hell was she texting Greg on her night off? Why? As she poured herself some coffee, she tried to think about this calmly and rationally. Catherine had texted Greg. On her night off. So what? There were plenty of explanations for that. Maybe she really was just checking in on a case. Yeah. Right. Did you see the look on his face?
"Ow! Shit!" Sara swore aloud as the coffee cup overflowed and scalded her hand. She shook it animatedly.
"Whoa, Sar, you okay?" Nick asked as he was passing.
"Yeah," Sara smiled sourly, "just dandy."
"You want some help with that?" He grabbed some paper towels.
Sara took them distractedly. "Thanks."
"You sure you're okay, Sara?"
"Mhm. Just a little preoccupied."
"Alright." He headed towards the door.
Sara took a step forward, "Hey, Nick?" she asked, hesitantly.
"If you're dat…if you have a mutual attraction with somebody and you find out that they were flirting with someone else, what does that mean?"
He shrugged, "It depends on their personality."
"What do you mean?"
"Well, say you and I had a- what did you call it? A mutual attraction? Say we did, and I caught you flirting with Warrick, I'd be pretty pissed off, because you're not the kind of girl to do something like that. Whereas if I was dating Catherine and I saw her chatting up Greg or Grissom- well, it wouldn't bother me so much. She flirts with everyone- it's just who she is. Does that help?"
Sara cocked her head to one side. How did he know…? "Yeah, thanks, Nicky."
Sara collapsed on the sofa and shook her head. Why was this bothering her so much? There was no way Catherine was flirting with Greg. Right? And even if she was, why should she care? It's not like she had some sort of claim on the redhead. You could hardly consider what they were doing as dating. A few relatively innocent touches and one killer kiss did not constitute a relationship. And they had barely spoken since the kiss almost five days ago. What the hell is going on?
Sara tried to assure herself that she was not emotionally invested in whatever it was she had going with Catherine. But the harder she tried, the more she failed. If only I could find out what was in that text message…
"Hey, Sara." Greg bounced across the room to the coffee maker.
"Hey," Sara said, distracted.
"I'm running Nick's vaginal contribution through the Mass spec. But you and Warrick's saliva swab is up next."
"Hey, you okay?"
"Why do people keep asking me that?"
"You just seem a little tense, that's all."
"Well, I'm fine. I am just fine, thanks."
"Okay, well, I'll see you around then." And with that he left the room.
Sara looked over to the coffee machine and saw Greg's phone sitting on the counter. "Hey, Greg-" she began, and stopped. She looked at the phone again. Did she dare? She thought about how she would feel if Catherine really were flirting with Greg, and about how much better she'd feel if she knew it wasn't true. Yes. She dared. Standing up, she casually sauntered over to the counter, snatched up the phone and then all but ran to the women's bathroom where she slammed the door and locked it. Back against the door, she went to the 'messages received' box on Greg's phone and found the text from Catherine. Taking a deep breath, she began to read. It was worse than she could have imagined:
Hey, hot stuff! What are you up to? Thought I'd suggest breakfast at the diner off fourth? Eight-thirty? Got something important to say. I hope you wear those sexy jeans I love so much. XO Cat.
Sara felt her blood boil. What the hell was going on? Greg and Catherine had a date? The very thought made her want to retch. How was this possible? Where had she gone wrong? Okay, so it wasn't like they were engaged, hell they hadn't even gotten to second base. But she had thought that they at least had some unspoken mutual agreement. They liked each other. Or at least…she thought they did. Maybe she was the one doing all the liking. Maybe Catherine was just along for the ride. Just messing around with her until something better came along. Sara shook her head. Greg was something better?
Defeated, she left the bathroom and headed for the DNA lab. "Hey, Greg, you left your phone in the break room."
"Oh, hey, thanks."
"Sure. You get those results yet?"
"Weren't you listening a second ago?"
"When I told you I'd run them after Nick's?"
"Right, sorry. I'm just going to go see what Brass has turned up with the boyfriend…"
"'Kay. Hey, Sara, you sure you're okay?" Sara just glared at him until he held up his hands in surrender. "Okay, I get it, I can take a hint. You're fine."
Sara stomped off, half-heartedly in search of Brass. Could this day get any worse?
Catherine frowned at her phone where it lay on the bed. It had been two hours, she should have gotten a response by now. Even if everyone was called out and the lab was jam packed, it didn't take this long to send a text message. She sighed. Don't think about it. Focus on something else. Clothes. Think about clothes. Should you where the purple top or the blue? Is a dress too much?
Sara Sidle was not focused. "Shit." This was the second time she had spilt the print powder in the last hour. Things were not going well. Even Grissom had noticed.
"Sara, are you alright? You seem…preoccupied."
"I'm fine!" Sara snapped, agitated. "I am completely and totally one hundred percent fine!"
Gil stared blankly at her for moment. "Okay. Well, you know where my office is."
Sara brought her head crashing down on the lab table. "Ow. Dammit." She rubbed her skull. This was getting ridiculous. So what if Catherine was going on a date with Greg? So what if that was the most disgusting she'd ever heard of? So what if Catherine didn't deem her worthy of a date? So fucking what? "Big deal!" she stated to the empty room. "Like I care! She can screw Hodges for all I bloody care!"
There was a knock on the door and Sara turned to find a very perplexed Warrick staring at her.
"Brass's BOLO come through on the boyfriend?" she huffed.
Warrick nodded, still looking at her worriedly.
"Great." She shrugged out of her lab coat. "And before you ask?" she ushered him out the door. "I'm fine."
Why wouldn't she have a message by now? She should have a message by now. It was seven twenty-eight. She had been dressed and ready to go for nearly three hours. She was jittery.
"Lindsey? Hurry-up, the bus will be here any minute!"
"Believe it or not, I have done this before, Mom!"
Maybe what happened was, there was an enormous case and everyone was required to be out in the field or processing evidence for the entire shift. Yeah, that would be it. It certainly wouldn't be the first time her calls or texts went unanswered. So she would go to the diner, she would wait for fifteen minutes, if that didn't work, she would swing by the lab on her way home.
"Man, that was a long shift." Nick exclaimed, pulling on his jacket.
"Right? I was ready for it to be over hours ago. But at least we closed our case, eh, Sar?"
Sara was sitting on the bench of the locker room, her shoulders hunched.
"What is up with you, girl? You've been a space cadet all shift."
She shrugged, "Just haven't been feeling that well I guess."
"Well, c'mon. We'll treat you to breakfast and you can tell us all about it. We could hit the Bellagio and have a little champagne and toast to celebrate catching the bad guy?"
She shook her head, "Nah, you guys go ahead. I think I'll just head home."
Nick pulled her up on her feet. "I don't think so, little lady."
"How can you say 'no' to free pancakes and coffee? C'mon, Sar. It'll be fun."
Sara sighed. It wasn't like she wanted to be alone in her apartment right now anyway. "Fine. But you let me treat you guys sometime this week."
"You'll get no arguments from me."
Catherine tapped her fingertips together nervously. Okay, she'd wait five more minutes and then she'd go. How was she going to say this? She should have practiced. Look, I know we've been dancing around this for a while now…no, that's not right. Something romantic. You are the love of my life. No, too forward. The thing is, I like you. Too vague? She sighed hopelessly, what she said didn't really matter if she was sitting at this table all by herself.
"You want some more coffee, honey?" The waitress was actually a few years younger than her, but she had a maternal air about her.
"Yes, thank you."
"You sure whoever you're waiting for is coming? Why don't you try givin' 'em a call?"
"No need," came a male voice. "I'm right here."
The waitress stepped out of the way and Catherine furrowed her brow. "Greg?"
He smiled brightly. "That's me. I got your message." He looked down, still grinning. "Are these my sexy jeans?"
Catherine's eyes widened. "Oh, God."
Sara tramped up her stairs, muttering to herself. Maybe having breakfast with the guys had been a bad idea. All she could think about was the fact that three blocks west somewhere, Catherine was doing God knows what with Greg Sanders. Greg Sanders. What the hell? In an effort to stop that line of thinking, she had plowed full force through her breakfast, and now she felt unbelievable ill.
Sara's head snapped up as she reached her landing, only for her eyes to collide with crystalline blue. Her jaw set. She sidestepped Catherine and dug in her pockets for her keys.
"I've been calling you for the last hour."
"I don't know why." Sara said icily. "What could we possibly have to talk about?"
"A lot actually."
Sara opened the door, "Is that right?"
"Can I come in?"
The brunette glared at her. "I don't suppose you'll leave me alone until you've said your peace?"
Catherine shook her head.
"Fine. But make it quick. I've got a date."
Catherine stopped short. "You do?"
"Yeah, with my pillow, two Tylenol, and a bottle of Pepto."
The older woman breathed a sigh of relief, something that did not go unnoticed by Sara.
"Yeah, I talked to Nick. He said you had quite the breakfast this morning."
Sara threw her keys on her kitchen counter. "What do you want, Catherine?"
Catherine chewed a thumbnail uneasily "I want to talk."
"About what?" The younger woman crossed her arms over her chest defensively.
"Ab-about what's been going on between us."
Sara raised her eyebrows in mock curiosity. "Oh, really? You mean there's something between us besides my coffee table?"
Catherine frowned. Why was Sara acting like this? Nick had said she was a little agitated all shift. She couldn't possibly know about…Greg swore he didn't tell anyone…She squared her shoulders. Catherine Willows was not someone to give up without a fight- and she wanted to fight for this one. "Yeah, Sara, you know damn well there is." She flinched, she didn't want to provoke her…much.
"Well, talk away!" Sara's voice had grown louder.
"Fine!" Catherine couldn't help going for the bait. The truth was it was just so much fun to fight with Sara.
"We've been flirting for weeks!"
"You started it!"
"With those tiny little tops and unbuttoned jackets you wear. You know damn well what those do to people."
"Excuse me for wanting to look nice! I certainly wasn't the one who looked up from the microscope two weeks ago and said, 'Good morning, Catherine, you're looking well-proportioned this evening'!"
"Oh, yeah? Well, I wasn't the one who kept pressing their chest into my back every time they leaned over my shoulder."
"That was not intentional!"
"Let's talk about your ass, shall we? Don't think I haven't noticed that extra swing in your step you add in just for me."
"You are completely disillusioned! That is how I walk all the time."
"Oh, yeah? Well, you kissed me!"
"After you had me pressed against the wall! You were practically climbing on me! And may I remind you that you undeniably kissed me back!"
"What exactly was I supposed to do with your tongue down my throat?"
Sara paused. "Are you taking it back?"
Catherine furrowed her brow. "Are you?"
The brunette's eyes narrowed and she raised her hands in surrender. "You know what? I don't care. Take it back. I don't care."
Catherine felt the tell-tale pin pricks behind her eyes as her throat tightened. She would not cry in front of Sara. "Is that really what you want?"
"I…" Sara hesitated.
What did she want?
If you had asked her yesterday evening before shift, she would have said she wanted to know where this could go, where they would end if they decided to take a chance. But now? Nick said it was just the kind of person Catherine was, as if it were some innate part of her personality. Was that true? If it was, Sara knew she couldn't handle it. But the thing was that she always assumed Catherine was the way she was because of a confidence issue. That it wasn't true to who she really was.
Sara sighed. "I want to go to bed, Catherine. It's been a really long shift. I've got a headache and a stomach ache."
"No you don't," the redhead admonished, stepping closer. "We are going to finish this here and now."
"So finish it."
"I will." Catherine sidestepped the coffee table and pulled Sara flush against her, crushing their lips together.
Oh, my God, Sara thought. She feels so good. Involuntarily, she began to respond to the kiss. She brought her hands up to rest on the smaller woman's waist, mumbling nonsense as Catherine left her lips and began placing light kisses along her jaw and down her neck. It was only when Catherine's mouth touched the V of her cleavage that she realized what they were doing and exactly why they shouldn't be doing it.
"Cath, Cath, stop." Sara pushed the older woman away.
Catherine looked confused. "What's wrong?"
"I can't do this."
"You, me, whatever the hell it is we're doing here, I can't do it."
Catherine felt her heart sink. "Why not?"
"Because…I can't be with someone in any sexual or emotional capacity if they are going to be with someone else." Catherine went to interrupt but Sara stopped her with a look. "And you've made it quite clear that you do not feel the same way."
Catherine stared at her, genuinely perplexed. "I have?"
"You don't need to act all confused. I know all about your little breakfast date this morning."
"Yes, I do. And I want you to know that I think it's repulsive. It's not even that he's almost young enough to be your son. I could live with that if it were somebody else. But Greg? You have nothing in common, he has the intellectual capacity of a twelve year-old boy, he-" Now it was Sara's turn to look confused. "Why are you laughing?"
"You think I had a date with Greg? Oh, God, no wonder you're so pissed off at me. But tell me, how did you figure that out? I've already talked to Greg and he swears he didn't tell a soul."
"I read the text message on his phone- it seemed pretty straightforward to me. You don't call somebody 'hot stuff' when you're just friends."
"I absolutely agree one hundred percent."
Catherine smiled. "Sweetie," she stepped into Sara's personal space once again. "Greg is number five on my work cell speed dial. First is Grissom, then you, then Nick and Warrick, and then Greg."
Sara took a step back, "And what does that have to do with…?"
Catherine took a another step forward, still grinning. "Sara, you're number five on my personal cell."
Sara got that calculated expression she had when she was about to crack a case.
Catherine cocked her head to one side. "Get it?"
"So…" Sara looked into the smaller woman's eyes. "You want me to believe that Greg's text message was actually meant for me?"
"That's exactly what I want you to believe. Because it's the truth."
"So…" Sara was still trying to figure it out. "You think I'm hot stuff?"
Catherine experimentally wrapped her arms around the taller woman's waist. Sara rested her hands on Catherine's shoulders, but did not push her away. "Sure do."
"And you think I look sexy in these jeans?"
"I think you look sexy in anything, but I wasn't actually talking about those. I meant the ones that have the sandblasting on the thighs."
Sara nodded dumbly. "And you have something important to say to me?"
"Yes, I do."
Sara looked down at the redhead. "What?"
Catherine stepped back, taking a deep breath. This was it. This was what all the fuss had been about. "Sara, would you like to go out with me?"
Sara was stunned. "What?"
"Go out. You. Me. Date."
"You and me?"
"Why? Oh, gee, I don't know. Maybe because you're all I ever think about. Because just picturing you in my head makes my heart pound out of my chest. Because when you kissed me, everything that was going wrong in my life just suddenly seemed to make sense. You turn me upside down with one look and I love it. Nobody has made me feel like that in a really long time."
"So you want to go out with me?"
"Yes. I'm not saying we have to move in together or get married or even tell anyone if you don't want to. But, yes, I want to go out with you. I want to see where this goes."
"And you're sure you don't want to go out with Greg."
Catherine laughed. "Poor Greg, you should have seen his face when I told him it was a mistake. He looked so pathetic it was almost cute." Sara scowled making Catherine laugh again. "Don't worry, baby. He hasn't got a chance in Hell. You're the only one I want."
"Really?" Sara looked hopeful.
Catherine placed her palm on the brunette's soft cheek and raised up on her toes to give her a chaste kiss. "Really, truly."
"Then let's do it."
Catherine quirked an eyebrow, sexily. "Do what?"
"Go on a date."
"I like the sound of that."
Sara pulled the smaller woman tightly against her a kissed her forehead. "Hmm," she hummed into her hair, "me too." They stood there for a long moment before Sara broke the silence. "So, I'm number five on your personal speed dial, huh? Who comes before me?"
"Lindsey, my mom, my sister, and the Chinese restaurant down the street."
"I got beat out by a restaurant?"
"A) It's not a competition, and B) you have never had their food so you cannot judge."
"Huh. You got anywhere to be?"
"Not until Lindsey gets home, why?"
"You want to watch a movie? We can pass out on the couch. I really need sleep. And I wasn't kidding about that stomach ache."
Catherine kissed the crook of Sara's neck. "You go pick the movie and lie down. I'll make you some tea and get you that Tylenol."
But when Catherine entered the living room, it was to the opening credits of Sabrina and a completely dead to the world Sara Sidle. She set the tea down and climbed onto the couch behind Sara. She pulled a blanket up around both of them and wrapped her arms around the thin woman. She sighed contentedly. She finally had Sara Sidle right where she wanted her.
What did you think? Did you like it? Did you hate it? Did you like some parts and dislike others? Whatever your opinion, all I can tell you is review, Review, REVIEW!
Also, if anyone is interested, I am up for writing a sequel- the date scenario. But I'm only going to do it upon request, so you have to make yourself known if you want to see it.
I hope everyone liked it!!