Disclaimer: I don't own the characters so I make no profit.

A/N: This is going to be a short one and the case isn't really central to the story I'm telling.

I had a few scenes that continued from my last N/N story that I wanted to write and threw in a case to give the

characters something to do.

A/N2: It's not quite done yet but if I start posting I hope it will motivate me to finish.

I'll stop making excuses now and start posting.


Nora stepped into the kitchen to find Nikki leaning against the counter staring down at the coffee maker, presumably trying to make it brew faster. She moved over and wrapped her arms around her lover's waist straining her neck to rested her chin on the shoulder in front of her. "You want to tell me what that was about?" she asked quietly.

Nikki covered Nora's hands with her own and dropped her head back against Nora's shoulder with a deep sigh.

When she didn't get a verbal answer Nora continued. "Not that I'm complaining, you could use that tactic to wake me every morning if you'd like. However, I've had that dream so many times it took me a few seconds to catch up with reality."

Smiling, Nikki turned in her lover's arms. "You dream about me?" she asked as she rested her wrists on Nora's shoulders and threaded her fingers through the blonde's hair.

"Why do you think I wake up smiling every morning." Nora dropped her hands to the counter at Nikki's back, effectively trapping the taller woman, as she leaned in for a kiss.

"And here I just thought you were a naturally happy person," Nikki replied against her lips.

Nora pulled back with a raised eyebrow. "Only since meeting you." She knew the brunette was avoiding the question although she didn't really need the answer.

Nikki looked into caring green eyes that were so full of concern for her well being that she decided to dodge. "I loved being trapped on a yacht with you," she began. "I guess I just wish we were still there."

Nora's lips quirked into a half smile. "Well how about next time we just take the boat and leave Jeff and Maggie on the dock."

Nikki reached up to brush a lock of hair from Nora's face. "Now that could quite possibly be the best idea you've ever had."

"Well, I may have another one. Why don't you go outside and sit, I'll make the coffee and bring it out." Nora moved aside to finally allow her captive to move away from the counter.

"Two for two, keep it up Delaney," Nikki teased as she moved out to the courtyard.

Once Nikki was out of sight Nora turned and leaned against the counter and let out a long deep sigh. She knew what was bothering Nikki, it was the same thing that had her slightly on edge, today was her first day back to work since being abducted by William Landry three weeks ago. Three weeks that included not only the abduction but also an arrest for murder and three attempts on her life. Although as terrible as those events were she couldn't complain about how those weeks ended, four days on a nice big yacht cruising to the Florida Keys and back. And she wholeheartedly agreed with Nikki, she wished they were still there.

*

Nikki sat at the table in the courtyard and debated explaining to Nora why she had accosted her so early this morning, her nightmare had been so vivid that she just needed tactile proof that they were both alive and healthy. She knew that Nora was still having a difficult time dealing with the recent events, so she hated to burden her with her own fears but she knew that they needed to talk things through. Nikki had been encouraged when Nora opened up with her about some of her fears and how she was close to giving up when she was being abused by Landry but she would always revert to pushing aside her feelings for Nikki's well being. And now that they were going back to work the tension had returned, for both of them.

When Nora arrived with the coffee Nikki reached out, grabbed a handful of Nora's robe and pulled her down for a kiss in order to steel herself for the coming conversation. She quickly changed her mind, however, when she felt the weight of Nora's small back-up weapon in her robe pocket. The idea that her partner still did not feel safe even in their own home had her deciding that she couldn't burden her lover with her own stupid dreams. She would have to push aside her own fears and just be strong until Nora was in a place where she could have that conversation.

After a while of drinking their coffee and reading the newspaper Nora heard someone approaching them from behind, her hand instinctively dropping to the gun in her pocket.

Noticing the action Nikki glanced over Nora's shoulder to identify the visitor. "Good morning Mrs. Delaney."

"Nikki, I've told you," Nora's mother scolded as she approached.

"Sorry. Mary."

"Morning mama," Nora added after a deep breath.

"Good morning girls," Mrs. Delaney replied as she dropped a few newspapers onto the table.

Nora looked up at her mother. "What are you doing here mama?"

Mrs. Delaney frowned down at her daughter, "I just wanted to see how your trip was. Is that so wrong?"

Nora shook her head, although she didn't quite believe her mother's reason for this casual visit. "What are the papers for?"

"I saved a few from your awards ceremony. I figured since you left for your trip right after you probably haven't seen them."

Nikki watched as Nora fingered the papers, the frown deepening on her face. "The trip was very nice," Nikki replied to Mrs. Delaney, hoping to keep the older woman from scrutinizing her daughter's mood.

Mrs. Delaney smiled at Nikki. "I figured it would be. Jefferson and his wife seem like such good people."

Nora eyes snapped up from the papers and she stared up at her mother. "When did you meet them?"

"After the bail hearing I made him a cobbler as thanks," Mrs. Delaney answered matter-of-factly.

"And you went to their home?" Nora asked, bewildered.

"No sugar. I went by Jefferson's office to drop it off and Maggie just happened to be there." Mrs. Delaney then smacked Nora on the shoulder. "Didn't your mother raise you right?"

Nora narrowed her eyes and studied her mother's posture for a second before she stood up. "Would you like to sit down."

"Why yes, thank you. I would."

Nora frowned at Nikki, who was biting her lip to hold in her laughter. "I have to go in early this morning anyway," she announced as she headed toward the house.

Mrs. Delaney turned her attention to Nikki as she sat down. "I saw the cutest pair of shoes while I was out yesterday, I almost bought them for you but I wasn't sure of your size."

"Ooh, if the shoes are cute enough size doesn't matter," Nikki teased, laughing when she heard a grumble come from Nora as she entered the house.

Mrs. Delaney leaned over the table conspiratorially, "How is she doing?"

Nikki glanced back to make sure Nora was gone. "I think she may be doing better than I am." She thought it best to leave out the fact that Nora keeps a gun with her at all times.

Mrs. Delaney reached out and covered Nikki's hand with her own, giving it a comforting squeeze. "She have her meeting with the department shrink this morning?"

Nikki smiled, realizing that this woman before her had more knowledge of the department workings than most of the cops she worked with. "Then it's back to work," she answered with little enthusiasm.

"A visit to the doctor could do you some good too," Mrs. Delaney suggested carefully.

Sure I'll just tell the department psychiatrist that I'm having nightmares of my partner, who also happens to be my lover, being killed in the line of duty while I stand by and watch. She smiled and hoped that last bit stayed in her head. "I'll be fine."

"She's going to be trying extra hard to be normal so just keep an eye on her, but don't act differently or that will just piss her off." Nikki chuckled at her choice of words causing Mrs. Delaney to laugh along with her.

Nora chose that moment to reappear. "I think I liked things better before, you two are a little too chummy." She leaned over and kissed her mother on the cheek, "thanks for stopping by." Then she gave Nikki the same attention, "see you at the office."

"Have a good day, dear." Mrs Delaney called after her daughter, Nora throwing a wave over her shoulder.