Summary: Rachel has to pull herself together and re-adjust to work and life after Frank leaves.
A/N: This is a little story I've been going back and forth to for about six months. Took me a while but I've finally finished, hope its ok. =)
Rated: K+ - nothing major going on in here, a couple of swear words but that's it.
Disclaimer: I don't own the characters on Water Rats! Obviously.
Rachel Goldstein went home to a quiet and empty house. It was this way most of the time, but tonight, it had a bit more meaning. She made her way to the couch, sitting down on it heavily, still feeling a little affected by the few glasses of champagne she had earlier. Thoughts whizzed around her head; she knew he would lose the plot one day. She just didn't think it would be like this.
He was leaving. Venezuela. Two bloody years! But in her mind, Rachel had the feeling that he may never come back. Why would he? What has he got to come back to, she thought, closing her eyes and rubbing her head. He would meet someone, a 'Miss World', they'd have a kid or two perhaps, and that would be it. Rachel didn't know why she felt this way. In fact, she never would've thought that she would feel this way when she met him. She couldn't stand Frank Holloway back then. He was always doing his own thing; going off on his own somewhere. It pissed her off when he did that. They were supposed to be partners. But they sorted it out, she told him he had to stop going off on his own.
And now, here they were, three and a half years later. Good friends. No, best friends. He was the best damn friend she had ever had. It was going to be odd not seeing him every day at work.
The next day, Rachel got dressed for work like it was an ordinary day. It wasn't going to be anywhere near it, but she had to pretend that it was. Otherwise she'd probably be a blubbering mess. She drove to the marina where Frank moored his boat. He must've heard her footsteps because he turned around and saw her walking towards him.
"You know, t-shirt and shorts would've been more appropriate," he had told her.
She apologised for not being able to go with him. There was no way that it could ever work anyway, she tried to justify her answer in her head. They would get sick of each other on that small boat, and he would probably end up throwing her overboard. With a long hug, and a light-hearted conversation that she didn't want to end, he was gone; sailing off in the distance, out of Sydney Harbour. She waved until she could no longer see him properly and tears began to flow down her cheeks.
Rachel didn't know what to do next, so she stood there for a while, listening to the silence that surrounded her. The once wet tears on her cheeks began to dry up thanks to the wind. She felt like crying some more but knew that she had to pull herself together. There was no way she wanted to go into work looking like this. When she was seated in her car, she adjusted the rear-view mirror so that she could see her face. Her eyes were red and sore; lucky she didn't put mascara or eyeliner on, she thought with the smallest of smiles.
Walking into work was the hardest it had been since she had shot Knocker. Everyone smiled at her sympathetically; they knew she and Frank were close. Helen gave her a smile as well, motioning to her with her head, "Come on, let's go upstairs to my office and talk," she said. That was the wonderful thing about Helen Blakemore. Rachel always felt like she could talk to her about anything and everything.
They talked for what seemed like an hour or more. Rachel really admired Helen – she had known Frank a lot longer than Rachel did. Yet she still kept a strong attitude and a smile on her face. Perhaps Helen was thinking positively, and thought that Frank would actually come back one day. Damn, why can't I feel that way, Rachel thought.
"Things will change a little around here," Helen said and Rachel snapped out of her thoughts, "But it will be okay."
She was always so reassuring, like a mother when her child was hurt.
Rachel smiled at the older women and nodded, thanking her for the chat. She then walked out of her office and into the one she now only shared with Michael Reilly, glancing at what used to be Frank's desk. It was bare, a sight which she wasn't used to seeing. As far as she knew, there was nothing in the drawers, but she didn't want to look. There was no way she was quite ready for that just yet.
Strangely, she began to wonder who they would get to replace Frank. Probably Jack Christey, she thought with some disdain. She knew however, that she shouldn't feel that way about him. He had done nothing to her; it was her who had been so horrible to him. But the thought of him arriving at the Water Police and putting his things on Frank's desk made Rachel squirm.
She had to get over the transition eventually though. She couldn't hate Jack for replacing Frank forever.