The Loss of a Colleague, Mentor and Friend
After the events of the last 72 hours trying to prove one of his friends' innocence of one of Vegas's biggest crime lords Lou Gedda, Greg Sanders was relieved for a break from work. He was at the airport waiting for his flight to Los Angeles where he had meeting from various publishers which he was hoping would lead to the publication of his book charting the history of the mob in Las Vegas, a place in which he was proud to call home.
As Greg sat in the Departure Lounge of McCarran International Airport, it dawned on him how different his current setting was to the places in which he visited as part of his job as a crime scene investigator – those were places which were very often filled with hate, sorrow and despair. Contrary to the picture of crime scenes, airports were a scene of love and hope in which families and loved ones were reunited.
Suddenly, Greg felt the unmistakable vibrating of his phone, and in that instant Greg felt an overwhelming sense of dread. "Greg, it's Catherine," she said softly. The tears were evident in her voice, and only increased the overwhelming anxiety that Greg felt.
"It's Warrick, he's been shot, Greg, he… he didn't make it," her voice grew higher as tears threatened to choke her once again. Greg felt the sting of tears at the back of his eye, but he refused to let then fall. "I'm on my way back," he replied and Catherine told him to go straight to the lab. The lab's youngest CSI was silently relieved that he was not needed at the scene, to see Warrick's blood on the cold pavement on the street near the diner where they were all having breakfast together celebrating Warrick's release from custody, the strong scent of copper in the air or the coldness of the place which Nana Olaf attributed to the spirit that still existed.
Greg arrived at the LVPD Crime Lab and was immediately struck by the silence and tranquillity of the place; it was usually bustling with activity but after the news of Warrick's demise there was an uneasy sense of stillness and silence that surrounded the glass walls. Mandy was crying in the break room being comforted by Archie and Henry, whilst Wendy was sat at her desk in DNA dumbstruck by recent events.
Greg solemnly walked the silent corridors and came across Grissom, obviously grieving for the CSI. It was unnerving how sombre and emotional Grissom was during the first few days after the death of Warrick, Greg was so used to him being in control and keeping his emotions in check as they were during Nick's kidnapping, the aftermath of Jim's shooting and even during the investigation in to the abduction of Sara, his lover. Greg had figured that all his years on the job nothing could really affect him anymore but today he just looked a man broken by grief and loss.
Greg had to swallow the bile that appeared in his mouth at the sight of Grissom's shirt that was almost entirely in the blood that came from Warwick's lifeless body. "I… uh, need to do something," Greg said. Grissom replied that he could collect the clothes that Warrick was wearing from the morgue. Greg could only nod and made his way down there.
After collecting the clothes and taking them to Trace to be examined, Greg made his way to the boss's office and was shocked to find Sara Sidle standing there, her and Catherine hugging. Greg immediately went over and put his arms around her "I'm so glad you're here." Sara volunteered to make the arrangements for the funeral, and so Greg told her that he would help, Greg had missed spending time with her and he wanted to make she was okay after he sudden departure. He had hoped that Sara would come back to Vegas for something much happier than a funeral, like a wedding, although Greg could not think of a single person who was in a long-term, loving relationship other than Sara and Grissom and even then both of them lived in different states.
After many hours analysing the evidence, the team came to the conclusion that it was not Daniel Pritchard was not the person that killed Warrick but it was the Undersherrif Jeff McKeen. Greg had always hated the man especially after his reaction following the Fannysmackin' incident a couple of years ago in which he made Greg feel that he was to blame for the whole mess, but now he had nothing but disdain for the man and he hoped that he suffers in jail.
So, after what felt like a week with no sleep, Grissom sent the team home and Ecklie even game them all time off to grieve for their fallen friend. However, Greg thought that although the funeral was going to be a truly fitting tribute to Warrick he could not shake the feeling that it was not special enough for his special friend – a friend he could always rely on, the friend who together with Nick helped with clearing his name over the death of Demetrius James at his Post Mortem and who mentored him during his first few months as a CSI before Ecklie has split the team in two. Greg figured that if it wasn't for Warrick teaching him the ropes and disciplining him over mistakes he made he wouldn't be the CSI that he was. So, Greg sat there with a beer in his hands thinking of the perfect tribute and then it hit him, and so he turned on his laptop and found the manuscript of his book that was on his USB and began to type. Greg figured that a dedication to Warrick's memory in his book would suffice as Warwick spent his childhood growing up on the streets of Las Vegas and as an adult protected the people of the city from crime. And so consequently, Greg began to type:
Dedicated to the memory of Warrick Brown
A Colleague, Mentor and Friend