A/N: Had this song in my head for a few days now. It speaks more to me, personally, but fits this little story.
DISCLAIMER: SVU and related characters belong to Dick Wolf. Song belongs to Taylor Swift. Story, dialogue, narrative and plot belong to TStabler©
Olivia was staring into the small mirror in the locker room. At first, she was examining the purple bruise on her cheek, but as the minutes ticked away, she became engrossed in examining her face. Her eyes, how sad and dim they'd seemed now when they used to be bright and white. Her nose had become narrow, owed that to weight loss, she thought, but her clothes had been getting tighter, not bigger. Her complexion was once smooth and olive-toned, and now it was pasty, white, pale.
"Seems the only one that doesn't see your beauty is the face in the mirror looking back at you," a voice from behind her said.
She turned and furrowed her brow in confusion.
"You walk around here, thinking you're not pretty, but that's not true," the man looking at her said. "You're beautiful."
She sniffled and shrugged. "Thanks, Fin," she said. It wasn't his approval she needed. It wasn't his compliments she wanted. She turned back to face the mirror, and without warning, she brought a hand up, swung back, and punched the glass, shattering it.
"Hold on," Fin yelled, reaching for her. "Baby-Girl, you're losin' it! Calm down!"
Olivia shrugged him off of her and shook her head. "I'm fine," she spat, sniffling. "I'm…I'm fine," she said, softer with more even breathing. She closed her eyes and tried to stop the flood, the water was high and she was jumping into it, letting go, because no one knew her secret, and she couldn't tell them. She had to be fine. She smiled and took a breath, and said, "I'm fine."
Fin gave her a wary look and tilted his head. "This is about him, isn't it?" he asked.
Olivia said nothing, grabbing her jacket with her now-bloody hand and ran out of the locker room, ignoring the question. Ignoring the answer.
She blew by everyone in the hall, didn't even go back into the squad room, and she slapped the elevator call button. She stepped into it and sighed, feeling the tears building, but she stopped herself from crying. She plastered on a smile, tying herself together, and walked out of the building.
She walked quickly, down two blocks to the café at which she'd be meeting Casey. She stepped into it and waved at the lawyer, sitting at a table in the corner. She grinned, her smile fake but yet convincing, and walked over to her friend.
They ate, had a few drinks, and then their conversation turned serious. "Olivia," Casey began, "I'm worried about you."
"What?" Olivia asked. "Why?"
Casey sighed and looked at her pal, her eyes sad, and said, "Is true love really all you want? Because you're giving it away like it's extra change, hoping it'll end up in his pocket! You can't keep putting your life on hold, waiting for him to leave his wife. You have to get over it, Olivia. Move on, it's killing you!"
"I can't…" she whispered. She blinked, again stopping the tears, and she said, "It's not his price to pay. It's my mistake, and I'm not…"
"Olivia," Casey interrupted, narrowing her eyes, "What price? What mistake?"
Olivia looked up and said, softly, "Don't worry about it. I'm fine."
"Baby, you're losing it. You cry, but you don't tell anyone," Casey said, running her finger over the red streak that had been left on Olivia's cheek. "You think you might not be the 'golden one', Olivia, but people do care about you, and they worry about you." She tilted her head and said, "You're tied together with a smile, and you're coming undone. Talk to me, honey. What's wrong?"
Olivia sniffled, realizing the tears had fallen, and she lowered her head. "I'm pregnant, Casey," she sobbed. She felt Casey gasp and wrap her arms around her, and she cried. Finally letting go. "No one knows," she whispered. "You can't tell anyone, Case. Especially not…"
"Olivia," Casey said, pushing her up and looking into her eyes. "Are you telling me this baby is…"
Olivia nodded, not waiting for Casey to finish asking her question. She wiped her eyes, grabbed her jacket again, and threw a twenty dollar bill down on the table. She left, without looking back, and headed out into the pouring rain.
The walk home was cold, wet, but she was thankful that no one would be able to see her crying for the raindrops. She walked up the steps to her building, pushed open the door, took a slow walk up the stairs and paused at the end of her hallway. "Shit," she hissed. She walked toward her door, scared and unsure. "What are you doing here?" she asked, not looking at him, unlocking her apartment.
"I needed to see you," he said. "Talk to you."
She pushed the door open and walked over to her couch, flopping on it ungracefully. "Did Casey call you?" she asked, folding her arms.
"Liv, I…why didn't you tell me?" he asked, blinking at her, his face a mix of hurt and confusion.
Olivia scoffed. "How could I? What the hell were you gonna do about it? We already decided that this was a mistake, and you…"
"You decided," he said, his voice firm. "You wouldn't let me walk away from her, Liv. No matter how many times I told you it was you I wanted. This…is not a mistake," he told her.
Olivia shook her head. "You don't know what you're saying, Elliot," she snapped.
Elliot reached up and caressed her cheek, gingerly grazing the bruise. "If I had known you were…God, I never would have let you go after that guy, baby."
Olivia sighed. "Don't call me…"
"Will you knock it off?" he barked. "If you bothered talking to me about anything but work in the last month, I would have told you I signed the papers, I moved out, and it's over. She hates me, and I get the kids every other weekend and some holidays, but fuck, I'm happy!" He saw her flinching as he yelled and he softened. "Liv," he said, pulling her into him, "You're so scared, and you think I'm gonna leave, I know that's why you keep pushing me away. There's nothing to be afraid of anymore."
She looked up at him, her tears falling freely now, and said, "I'm sorry. I'm so sorry, El, I didn't think…"
"I didn't think about it either, baby," he said, rocking her in his arms as her head fell to his chest. "You don't have to hold yourself together anymore," he whispered. "That's my job now."
She sniffled and shook her head.
"Yes it is," he said firmly. "I love you, Liv. Affair or not, it was never anything but love, and that's what created this baby. I'm here, and I'm gonna be here for every single blessed second of our child's life. You, me, this baby, that's life now."
She looked up at him again, smiling a real smile, and she said, "I love you, El."
He pressed his lips to hers gently and said, "My beautiful girl, how could ever think that I'd leave you alone?"
"I didn't think I was the one you wanted," she said. "Not really. I thought…"
"No, you knew," he said, stopping her with another kiss. "You were just afraid of it. Are you afraid now?" he asked, seeing her eyes brighten up again right in front of him.
She shook her head. "No, I'm…I'm fine." She kissed him again and sighed into him, letting him wrap her up, untying the fake smile and keeping the real happiness in her heart and on her face. She pulled away and nuzzled his nose. "I'm fine," she whispered.
And she was.
A/N: Sorry if it was awful, but that's the story that the song told me. I'm on a Taylor Swift kick, so there might be more of these popping up. Review here, or on Twitter: TMG212