I did it! Finally I have a Serena/Alex story. And I finished it already! Whew...sequel maybe....

Serena sat in the middle of her living room floor next to a bottle of wine and an empty wine glass. Her hair was up and her eyes were red. The open box next to her had pictures spilling out the top onto the ground in front of her.

A glance at the grandfather clock against the wall told her it was one fifteen. The pounding in her head told her it was one fifteen in the morning. It had been five hours since Branch had fired her.

She poured the rest of the wine into the glass and brought the rim to her lips. She closed her eyes as a slid down her throat. After half the glass was gone, she picked up the picture on top of all the other ones. It was a picture of her and her girlfriend of the time. It was after they were went ice-skating. Their cheeks were pink with the cold, but they looked as happy as anyone could ever be.

Serena looked at her phone on the coffee table a few feet away. Pride had kept her from calling her ex when she got upset before. She always felt like their breakup was a mistake. They were both upset about something neither one could remember anymore. They both said things they didn't really mean and that if they weren't so proud they would have taken back. Serena missed her. Every day.

She could feel the alcohol coursing through her. Serena wasn't a lightweight usually, but she was really tired and had drunk the majority bottle alone over the course of two hours.

A couple other pictures showed how happy they had been together. They met in their criminal law class their first year of law school. They were instant friends. After the three years together, they were closer than imaginable. The day after they passed the bar they went on their first date. They got jobs together at the DA's office, in different divisions.

After about two years at the DA's office, they got in a huge fight. It ended that night. They saw each other on occasion, but never spoke. Sometimes she could catch herself looking at her ex and wondering how she was doing. Sometimes she would catch her ex looking at her.

Serena rubbed her eyes. She thought about just going to bed, leaving the pictures on the ground to clean up in the morning.

Instead she threw caution to the wind and picked up her phone. After dialing the number she almost called a hundred times over the past year, she put the phone to her ear. The blonde stood up on wobbly legs then grabbed the wine bottle and walked to the window that over looked Central Park.

As it rang, she took another swig of the wine straight from the bottle. She was upset, a little drunk, and really raw. The consequences of calling her ex made no difference to her at that moment.

The voice in her ear caused her heart to skip a beat. Her ex's voice was groggy like she had been asleep. "Hello?"

It took Serena a moment to respond, almost wanting to just hang up. However if her ex's phone was like every other cell phone in America it already displayed her number so finding out whose number it was would be easy.

"Hey," was all Serena could squeak out. Her voice was starting to fail and she could feel tears well up behind her eyes. "Alex…I…." She couldn't finish. A sob overtook her as she slid down the wall back to the floor.

"Serena?" Alex Cabot's voice asked, suddenly more awake. "What's wrong?"

Serena tried to explain a few times what was wrong, but only managed to make a few strangled syllables before breaking down again.

"I'll be right over," Alex softly replied to Serena and then hung up.

Serena look at her phone. The call lasted less than twenty seconds. She lulled her head back to the wall. She closed her eyes trying to clean her mind. It didn't work. Nothing work. Tears just fell down her face and there was no stopping it.

After a few seconds, she managed to get to the bathroom to rinse her face. The cold water felt good on her face. She thought about putting some mascara on at least, but figured that when she started crying again, which she knew she would, it would just run down her face, making her look even more like the wreck she felt like.

A knock on the door alerted her to her ex's presence. She was suddenly nervous. She hadn't talked to Alex in a really long time. She wasn't sure what she was going to say or if she would be able to manage to say anything at all.

Serena opened the door without hesitation because if she paused she might not have the courage to open it at all. Alex was standing on the other side of the door. She was wearing jeans, sneakers, and a Columbia sweatshirt.

Everything that Serena was going to say or do left her mind. Her eyes teared up again and her vision started to get blurry. She felt Alex's arms enfold her and heard the door close. Everything seemed to be happening in slow motion.

Serena felt Alex guide her to the bedroom and lay down next to her, the protecting arms never leaving Serena's body.

"It's okay," Alex whispered into Serena's ear, "It'll be okay."

All Serena could do was shake her head and bury her face in Alex's sweatshirt. She didn't think it was going to be okay.

Her job was her life. Now she didn't have a job. It felt like she didn't have anything.

Alex kissed her ex-girlfriend's forehead and continued whispering to her, trying to figure out exactly what to say to make her feel better. At the same time, she felt a strong sense of nostalgia laying in her old bed again. The one she used to share with Serena.

It didn't take long for Serena to cry herself to sleep. Alex didn't want to wake the sleeping blonde so she pulled the covers over both of them and settled in for the night.

In the morning, Serena woke up to find that she was alone in bed. Her head was pounding and she hoped that it wasn't a drunken dream that Alex came over. She looked at the clock on the nightstand and saw it was almost ten am. Next to the clock she saw a bottle of aspirin and a bottle of water.

She smiled a bit before the smiling hurt her head. She slowly sat up and took a couple of the pills. From her sitting up position, she could smell coffee.

The short walk to the kitchen seemed like it took years. Serena blamed it on the light streaming through the wall of windows she just had to have overlooking the park.

In the kitchen, Serena found a white paper bag, a full coffee pot and a note. Serena opened the bag and found her favorite muffins. She took one out and started peeling the wrapper while she read the note.

"I was going to make you breakfast, but there's no food in the kitchen. I have to go to work, but if you still want to talk, I can come by later and we can have dinner or something. If you need anything call me. I hope you feel better."

Serena smiled at the note. Words couldn't express how much she missed Alex. Having her back, even for those few short hours, was making the whole situation more bearable. Serena got cup of coffee and finished her muffin.

Then she went back in her bedroom, closed the curtains and the door and changed into pajama pants and a cami. She crawled back in bed and pulled the covers up to her chin. Although Alex was back by her side at least as a friend, she wasn't ready to face the world.

Alex sat at her desk and closed her eyes. She couldn't get the image of Serena breaking down out of her head. She had already discussed it with Branch. He seemed like he regretted it already, but his pride wouldn't admit it. McCoy was a mess without her. He had yelled at two interns, probably scaring them into changing professions, and had every paralegal in the building scrambling to get what he wanted together.

Her day was going kind of slow as it was. Her detectives were out chasing leads on a guy Alex was sure they'd never nail down even on a good day.

She made a quick decision and packed up her things. She told her secretary that she would be out the rest of the day and only to call her if it's an emergency.

When she got to Serena's apartment she took out a key that had been unused on the ring for almost a year. She looked at it for a moment and slid it into the lock hoping it still fit. She applied the smallest amount of pressure in turning it and the lock easily slid back.

She grinned, finally knowing that Serena never changed the locks.

Alex put her attaché on the floor next to Serena's briefcase and put the paper bag she brought with her on the table next to the door. She removed her shoes and walked around, finally finding Serena asleep in the bedroom.

The SVU ADA made her way to the kitchen, picking up her paper bag on the way. As she moved around the kitchen, taking pots and pans out, an odd comfort came over her finding everything in the same place she left it.

When Serena woke up again, it was almost two in the afternoon. The loud grumbling of her stomach had most likely woken her up. She sat up and smelled something that wasn't normally there. That delicious smell is what was making her stomach grumble.

Serena got up, looked at herself in the mirror for a few minutes before brushing her teeth, and washing her face. She was positive who was in the kitchen making that wonderful smell. She smiled to herself as she walked to the kitchen. Just having Alex back in the apartment made the apartment feel so much warmer.

When she stepped into the kitchen, she saw Alex getting a plate down. When the taller woman turned around. She smiled, "Hey. How do you feel?"

"A little better," Serena leaned back on the counter facing Alex. "I thought you had work."

Alex let out a small smirk, "Well Branch and I had a disagreement and Jack's on a rampage so I decided to get out before I got hit with a flying coffee mug."

Serena smiled, "So what are your plans for the rest of the day?"

"I'm not sure. After making sure you eat I might head to the park or something," Alex shrugged, putting what she had made for Serena on the plate and pushing it across the kitchen island to her.

Serena swallowed a lump in her throat. She used to be so comfortable around Alex, but now she wasn't sure what she could do or say. "Are you sure you can't stay?"

Alex looked at Serena. A small smile escaped her lips, "Sure." She pulled a fork out of the drawer, "Now eat."

"You act like I don't eat," Serena picked up the fork.

The taller woman leaned on the opposite counter and crossed her arms, "When I open the refrigerator and find only yogurt, a reasonable person would believe that you don't eat."

"I eat," Serena took a bite of her food, "I just can't eat like you do. You have the metabolism of a hummingbird."

Alex chuckled and walked to the pantry and opened the door, "Even if that was true, eating just yogurt," she pulled a box out of the pantry, "and expired instant mashed potatoes isn't good."

"In my defense," Serena grinned, "Those potatoes have been there for more than a year. I haven't touched them."

The SVU ADA tossed the box into the trash and started to clean up.

"Aren't you going to eat?" Serena asked.

Alex shook her head, "I'm…not hungry." She kept her head down as she answered and started to wash the pan she used.

Serena watched her ex carefully and thoughtfully wash the dishes. It was easy for Serena to tell that Alex was upset. Something must have happened at work. A year ago, she would have gotten up and given Alex a hug, asking if she wanted to talk about it. When Alex would have said no, she would have waited until Alex finally told her about the victim of the day.

Serena may have been the only person that really ever knew how much SVU really got to Alex and for the past year Serena would constantly worry about Alex and how she was handling it.

"How old was she?" Serena asked quietly from her spot across the kitchen.

Alex momentarily froze before rinsing out the pan, "Eight."

Serena's heart ached. Alex always hid her emotions unless prodded to share. Sometimes pushing it down all the time caused her to have a crippling breakdown a couple times a year where she blamed herself, society, the police, and God. Serena was always amazed that after the breakdown, Alex seemed perfectly okay, maybe even stronger than before.

"I'm sorry," Serena whispered.

Alex nodded as she dried to pan, "Me too." After she put it up, Alex leaned on the counter and watched Serena for a while, taking a little comfort in the familiar way Serena ate while she was thinking.

Serena noticed that Alex was watching her and quickly came up with something to say, "This is really good Lex."

Alex smiled at the use of a nickname Serena dubbed her with years ago. "Thanks. There's some leftover that I'm going to put in your fridge so you don't starve."

Serena opened her mouth to reply when a buzz echoed through the kitchen. Alex snatched her phone off of the counter and flipped it open, answering in a professional manner, "Cabot." A smile crossed her face after a second and she leaned back on the counter. "Sure, I'd love to." Her eyes shot to Serena and then back to the place her fingers were drumming on the counter. "Is it okay if I bring someone?…Alright Liv, I'll see you later."

When she hung up she looked at Serena, "That was Olivia Benson. She invited me to drinks tonight with her partner. Do you want to go?"

Serena really, really wanted Alex all to herself for as long as possible, but if going out for drinks with her ex's friends would let her spend just a little more time with the SVU ADA, Serena was up for anything. She was just scared at all of this was going to stop eventually. "Sure."

Alex smiled, "Great." She looked back down at the counter. Her voice lowered considerably when she asked, "Do you want to go to a movie or something before that? We're meeting them at six."

"That sounds really good right now," Serena took another bite of her food. She figured the a couple hours of suspended reality were a good thing. Plus, she could spend time with Alex and not have to figure out something to say.

Serena finished eating and changed while Alex finished cleaning up the kitchen. The blonde in the bedroom pulled on some jeans that she knew flattered her in everywhere that mattered. She picked out a bra/top combo that showed just a hint of cleavage without being obvious. Then she pulled on a tan jacket that Alex had bought her so long ago.

She doubted that Alex would remember, but Serena had her eye on it for the longest time, debating whether or not to splurge on the jacket or a pair of heels that had her eye. One day after work, Serena walked into the bedroom and found it on the bed next to the pair of heels. Serena searched the house and found Alex in the study working diligently. Her work was promptly interrupted when Serena dragged her to the bedroom and thanked her properly.

Serena slid on some leather boots that matched the jacket and walked out to Alex who was sitting on the couch, deep in thought.

"Ready?" Serena asked with a bright smile. She was downright giddy, going out to a movie with Alex. It was almost like a date. Of course they took turns trying to outdo each other in the date department when they were together and going to the movies was pretty low on the list, but Serena figured they had to start somewhere.

When they got to the movie theatre, they stood in front of the movie theatre trying to decide what to watch. Alex wanted to watch a chick flick and Serena made a weird face when she mentioned it.

Alex laughed, "Fine, what do you want to see?"

Serena grinned wickedly and walked to the ticket counter.

Just before the previews started, Alex regretted letting Serena pick. A sci-fi action adventure was definitely not what she had in mind.

"I forgot you have horrible taste in movies," Alex looked at Serena in the light of the screen

Serena grinned, "You're going to love this movie. Just like you love Star Wars and Alien and The Matrix and Serenity." She put a piece of popcorn in her mouth and looked back at the screen as the previews started.

The SVU ADA couldn't help but smile. Serena was right. Alex remembered one night they were watching TV and someone on some show made a reference to the Matrix. Alex offhandedly mentioned that she'd never seen it. Serena was utterly appalled and dragged Alex into the night searching for a video store that had it. They finally found it, along with a few more of Serena's favorite action movies and spent the whole night curled up on the couch, rooting for the good guy.

In the middle of the movie, Serena looked at Alex with a smug smile on her face. She was Alex get really into the movie. At that point a sad scene was coming up, which Serena knew was coming and wasn't really interested in. So she subtly watched Alex out of the corner of her eye. The popcorn was already gone and Serena contemplated getting up to get a soda before the action started again.

In one of her sideways glances, Serena saw tears well up in Alex's eyes. She had always been a softie when it came to movies. Serena reached over and took Alex's hand without thinking about it. It's what she was always used to do and it was automatic now.

Alex's grip on her hand became firm, but she did nothing else to show that she noticed. She was thoroughly engrossed in the movie and it was like she automatically accepted the gesture just like she used to. Serena sank back into her seat. There was no way she was getting up for a soda now.

After the movie, Alex pulled her hand away to wipe her eyes. Serena didn't like the loss of contact, but she found it endearing that Alex got emotional at movies.

By the time they shuffled out of the theatre, waiting in line to buy a soda, and found the car it was almost time to meet Olivia and Elliot.

The drive to the bar was fairly quiet. Neither one even acknowledging that they had held hands for nearly an hour.

When they got inside, they found that Olivia and Elliot were already there sitting at a round table with a pitcher of beer.

"Hey," Alex smiled at the detectives as they neared.

Elliot and Olivia stood and Olivia smiled, "Hey Alex." Olivia then smiled to Serena, "Hey stranger."

Serena smiled, "It's good to see you two."

Elliot smiled and threw a peanut into his mouth and went back to watching the game that was on the big screen

They all sat down and started talking. After a while, Elliot launched into a story that had all the women doubled over.

Serena got up to tell the bartender to send another pitcher to the table and head to the bathroom.

"So," Olivia wiggled her eyebrows, "What's up with Serena?"

Alex shrugged, picking apart a peanut, "Branch fired her yesterday and she called me crying. So I went over and we just fell asleep."

"That why you were late?" Elliot asked.

"No," Alex smiled, "I was late because I had a discussion with Branch."

"Is this like the discussions you have with us?"

Alex nodded, "But a little more venomous. In hindsight, it probably wasn't the best idea."

"You're the only ADA I know who isn't scared shitless of Branch," Elliot commented.

"There's no reason for me to be. No one wants my job. There's an office pool going around betting on when I have a nervous breakdown because of SVU. The ones that think they might wouldn't last a week." she grinned after a sip of her beer, "You two would run them off."

"Yeah, we tried to do that to you, but you're too damn hardheaded," Olivia added.

They all laughed as Serena returned.

"I heard hardheaded. You must be talking about Alex," she smiled and took her seat.

"Naturally," Olivia nodded with a coy smile, "I'm sure you have some experience with that."

Serena looked at Alex and smiled, "Oh yeah."

Alex lost herself in the light blue eyes of her ex. She knew she was falling for Serena all over again. They just fit together. They were so comfortable together.

Alex wanted to go back to the apartment and apologize the night she left. Some part of her brain, some stupid part, was convinced that Serena should come to her. That in going back, she would concede victory. That was something Cabot's don't do. Unfortunately it was something Southerlyn's never do either.

Alex waited a few days, almost a week, and finally Alex felt that Serena wasn't going to call. So she took a day off work, found an apartment on the other side of the island, and got her things while Serena was at work.

Now, for the life of her, she couldn't remember what the fight was about.

It took a while for Alex to realize that Serena and Elliot were gone. She scanned the bar and found them at the pool table, starting a game.

Olivia smiled, "We lost you there for a few minutes. Elliot challenged Serena to a game of pool."

"She definitely wouldn't back down from a challenge," Alex took another long drink of her beer.

"You've got it bad," Olivia grinned and shook her head.

"Got what?" Alex acted clueless, but she knew the detective caught her.

Ignoring the question, Olivia asked, "Are you going to make a move?"

Alex sighed and glanced at Serena who was doing a small victory dance after sinking a shot.

She couldn't stop a smile. Serena was downright adorable at times. Her victory dance was one of those times.

The blonde looked back at Olivia, "Should I?"

Olivia shrugged, "It's up to you, but there's definitely chemistry."

"We were together for two years and we were best friends before that," Alex explained, "I told you the story. There's going to be some residual chemistry."

"You're trying to talk yourself out of it," Olivia pointed out.

Alex put both of her hands around her glass, "Maybe."

"You are."

"Fine," Alex sighed "But it's hard because…when it ended…I." Alex stopped abruptly when Serena bounced over. Alex smiled, "I take it you won."

"Damn straight," Serena slid back into her seat, "I don't lose."

"You will at darts," Elliot sulked over with his hands in his pockets.

Serena downed the rest of the beer in her glass she hopped up, "No way."

Olivia laughed at the younger woman's attitude and looked at Alex, "You two are perfect for each other."

Alex chuckled, "Maybe."

"Do you need a refill?" Olivia offered the pitcher to Alex.

"No," Alex shook her head, "I'm driving and she's going to be drinking more if she keeps winning, which she will."

That's just what Serena did. She won at darts, pool again, virtual golf and shuffleboard until the pitcher of beer was gone.

Alex was Serena's crutch as they hobbled to the car. "Okay, careful," she cooed as Serena cheerfully, hopped into the car.

Alex smiled as Serena cranked up the music in the car.

Serena was nodding off by the time they pulled to a stop outside her apartment.

"You were always a lightweight," Alex added as she hefted her ex out of the car.

"Am not," Serena petulantly replied.

Once up the stairs and inside, Serena went to the bathroom to get ready for bed. Alex went to the kitchen and got some water to take the Serena. When she stepped into the bedroom, she saw Serena sitting on the edge of her bed.

Alex set the water on the nightstand as Serena turned to her. "Can I ask you something?"

"Of course," Alex answered.

Serena smoothed out the blanket next to her and patted it, indicated she wanted Alex to sit by her. The taller woman acquiesced.

Alex played with her hands in her lap while she waited for Serena to ask whatever she was going to ask. Serena always got really thoughtful when she was fairly drunk. Alex didn't understand it, but it's just the way Serena was.

Serena looked down at the floor and took a deep breath, "Why didn't you come back?" Her voice was barely above a whisper.

Having already figured this is what their conversation was going to be about, Alex wasn't quite as off guard as she could have been. "Why didn't you come after me?"

"Do you even remember what we were fighting about?" Serena asked quietly.

Alex shook her head, looking up at Serena. "No idea."

"Me neither," Serena kept her eyes on the floor. "I try to remember, but I can't. I've asked my friends if they remember, but they don't. The only thing I remember is…coming home after work to find all of your stuff gone."

Alex was quiet. She had always wondered how her leaving had affected Serena, but she thought it'd be rude to ask. Part of her also wanted Serena to know how upset she was that she didn't call.

Serena finally looked up and smiled weakly, "That was the worst day of my life. Getting fired was nothing compared to that."

"You could have called," Alex sighed, "I checked my phone constantly hoping that you'd call me."

Serena nodded, "I know. I should have called, but you could have just as easily come back."

"I know," Alex swallowed.

"I miss you," Serena whispered, averting her eyes.

Alex had to admit her feelings since Serena was being so raw and sincere. "I miss you too."

After a few minutes of fidgeting on the edge of the bed Serena finally asked, "What do we do now?"

Always being the rational one, Alex suggested, "Sleep on it. Call me when you wake up and let me know what you want to do."

Serena finally looked at Alex and nodded, "Okay."

Alex slowly stood and walked out of the room with the ease and beauty that her ADA bravado afforded her.

When she heard the front door close, Serena crawled up the bed and rested her head on the pillow. She knew she was going to get little to no sleep. She stared at the ceiling for a while before rolling over the burying her face into the pillow next to her. Her senses were assaulted with the smell of Alex. Her perfume and shampoo mixed together to create a smell that was simply Alex. It surprised Serena how many memories that brought back. How many nights they'd laid in this bed discussing whatever was on their minds. How many nights they'd shared secrets and dreams. How many nights they'd spent making love in that bed.

Serena missed everything about being with Alex. Tears threatened to spill onto her cheeks as she remembered how good it really was.

Knowing that she wasn't going to get over this anytime soon, Serena sat up in her bed and turned on the lamp. She picked up the pillow Alex had used the night before and held it to her chest. She closed her eyes and remembered some of the good times she shared with Alex.

It finally clicked in her mind. She didn't have to sleep on it. She knew that she needed Alex. She wanted Alex. And even after a year apart, she was still completely and totally in love with Alex.

She set the pillow aside and ran into her closet. She barely remembered to grab her purse and car keys before running out the door. She ran down the stairs because the elevator was taking too long.

When she reached the ground floor, she realized that she had no idea where Alex lived. She took out her phone as she pushed through the door and stepped into the cold city night.

She stopped mid-dial. She sniffed the air around her. It smelled just like Alex. Serena quickly scanned her surroundings and saw the other blonde pacing the sidewalk with her head down.

A small smile crept onto her face. Alex didn't leave. She took a few purposeful steps toward Alex and stopped in front of her. The SVU ADA looked up. The look on her face was blank, but in her eyes Serena could see relief.

Serena closed the gap between them and kissed Alex. Their lips fit together perfectly and just like they both remembered. A catcall from across the street pulled them apart. Serena looked into the deep blue eyes of her ex and whispered, "Come home."

The simple request caused tears to jump to Alex's eyes. She managed a small nod before Serena took her hand and pulled her back into the building.

They went straight to the bedroom. Serena turned Alex around so that the back of her legs were pressed against the bed. Their lips met in a slow, soft kiss as they both fell onto the bed. Their bed.