A/N: The beat...goes on. A re-imagining of sorts...
DISCLAIMER: Dick Wolf owns SVU and the characters; TStabler© owns the story you're about to read.
"Evan, honey," Olivia said, filtering through the crayon-drawn pictures her son had strewn across the top of the dining room table, "What are all of these?"
"The things I see in my head," the boy replied, smiling as his little fingers danced a blue crayon across his paper.
Olivia handed the artworks, one by one, to Elliot, who was sitting across from her, on the other side of Evan. "These are..."
"Brilliant," Elliot declared proudly, running a finger along the face of his daughter, Lily, whom Evan had drawn in the center of one page.
"Explicit," Olivia said, clearing her throat as she handed Elliot another drawing.
Elliot couldn't help but laugh as he looked down at two crayon people "wrestling" in a big, red bed. "Hey, this is still brilliant. He even knows you have freckles on your..."
"Elliot!" Olivia spat, ripping the construction paper out of his hands. She rolled her eyes, then looked back at her son. "Honey, what...what about this one. Can you tell me what's happening here?" She held up a picture.
Evan looked at her, put his crayon down, and folded his hands. His little head tilted in thought, and he said. "You and dad are sad."
Olivia nodded. "Who...who's in the brown box, sweetheart?"
"Daddy's cop friend," the child said. Then he looked at his father. "Don."
Closing her eyes and taking a deep breath, she flipped the picture over, and held another one up. "What about this one?" She handed him a drawing of her and Evan lying on the floor, cradled in Elliot's arms, a puff of smoke to their left.
"Me and Daddy saved you from a monster," he said, picking up his blue crayon. He scribbled across the sky on his paper as he said. "I wrote the story on the back." He flipped the paper over for his mother. "I know you're bleeding, but it's just a scratch. Don't worry. We're all gonna be okay."
"Who's this?" Olivia said, finally picking up the drawing that had her the most concerned, the one that held the answers to her biggest questions, and the reason she'd spent the last hour watching her son color.
Evan looked back at his mother, smiled, and said. "You got the bad guy!" He tapped the man in handcuffs.
"What's his name, bud?" Elliot asked, scruffing Evan's hair.
"I already told you," Evan said, giggling. "Can I go play with Uncle Damon now?" he asked, as he slid off of the dining room chair and went running out of the room.
"Wait, kiddo!" Elliot yelled. "You didn't tell us..."
"Yes, he did, El," Olivia almost whispered.
He looked at his wife, confused, then watched as she slid the drawing toward him. He narrowed his eyes when she tapped a single finger over the gray crayon nametag on the cuffed cartoon. He lifted his head and met her eyes as he mumbled, "Holy shit."
"Get Damon," Olivia said, standing. "I've got a plan." She tapped a button on her communicator and spouted orders as she walked out of the room, leaving Elliot at the table, holding two pictures that scared him to death.
He looked from one to the other, then heaved another heavy sigh. "Fuck."
"For the last time, Fin," Cragen sighed, "I don't know who he is. I don't even know the name. Have you run him through the system?"
Fin nodded. "Of course we did," he said. "Eleven of them. Nothing on this guy. He's a ghost." He held up a finger. "Until we ran his prints."
"Not his real name?" Cragen asked.
Fin shook his head. "He's had six assumed names in the last ten years, and the last three...Stabler's nailed him on several molestation charges. This could be his way of getting revenge."
"So he's not after Evan because he has a gift," Cragen said, confused, "But because he's Stabler's kid?"
"That's what we're thinkin'...yeah," Fin nodded.
Cragen stood, then walked toward the heavy metal bars that separated him from Fin. "Why am I in here," he began, "When I should be out there, helping you find this guy?"
"Because intel says you're supposed to be a distraction," Fin told him. "If you're in here, safe, alone, then no way in hell anyone is gonna get to you, and this Gitano guy has no choice but to go after his real target first."
Cragen's fingers curled around the cold steel. "You locked me up, put me in a jail cell, to protect me?"
Fin smirked. "Damn right," he said, handing Cragen a cell phone. "This only dials two numbers. Me and Stabler. Use it in case of an emergency." He backed away from the cell and tugged on his sleeves just as his wrist-communicator beeped. "It's go time."
"You sure we're in the right place?" Elliot hissed over her shoulder at Olivia, his task vest and all of its components shifting as he moved.
"This is the building Evan drew," she whispered back, her fatal weapon in her hands, one finger on the trigger.
Elliot rounded the corner, looked at her, and said, "We got two men going around the back, one heading in from the roof, one in the wings."
"I know where my agents are," she said, her eyes slitted. "I'm not one of your partners, Stabler, I'm running this Op, and I happen to know how it's set up and how it will play out, you do not need to give me the coordinates of the other operatives."
He smirked at his wife. "Habit," he shrugged. "Ya know, you were much easier to deal with in London."
She slapped him in the arm and jutted her chin forward, telling him to keep moving. He took a step around the corner and she gasped, as he was pushed away from her. She raised her weapon, but froze. "Evan!"
"Mommy!" the boy yelled, trying to kick his way out of a man's arms. A man she'd never seen before, but who she knew well. "Mom, don't move!"
She didn't listen, instead she took a few steps forward. "Let him go!" she commanded, her eyes filled with fear and fire.
The man laughed. "Oh, hell no," he said. "He's my good luck charm." He gave Evan a kiss on the cheek. "He brought you right to me."
"What?" Olivia asked, dropping her weapon, and her guard, for a second too long. She saw the man move, Evan fell to the ground and she felt strong hands wrap around her and pull her backward. She felt the cold, sharp blade against her neck and she dropped her weapon.
Eliot scrambled to his feet and aimed his weapon, but his heart stopped when he realized he didn't have a safe shot. His weapon would hurt Olivia, no matter where he aimed.
"Remember me, Stabler?" the chilling voice hummed, right into Olivia's ear.
Elliot nodded once. "Let her go, Gitano" he said. "She has nothing to do with..."
"She has everything to do with this." The man dug the blade into Olivia's neck a bit. "One move from you, one inch, and she's gone."
Olivia stared right into her husband's eyes. "Shoot," she said. "Take the shot, Stabler, that's an order!"
"Ohh," the man chuckled. "This bitch gives you orders? Now, that's not the Elliot Stabler I know."
Elliot, his weapon still aimed, tried to breathe. "We're partners," he said. His eyes dropped slightly to hers. "For life."
Olivia nodded. "El," she said to him, feeling a tear drip down her cheek, "It's okay."
Elliot shook his head slightly, his hands trembling. "Evan! You okay, buddy?"
Evan didn't move. He was curled, lying on his side, limp.
"Shoot him, Elliot," Olivia's voice called again.
Gitano chuckled. "You softened him," he said, his hot, rank breath hitting her ear, filtering up her nose. "He would have shot me a long time ago if he was still the Stabler I knew." He crooked his head again. "How much do you love her?" he yelled toward Elliot.
"El, just shoot him!" Olivia shouted.
"More than anything," Elliot said, no hesitation.
Evan groaned, rolled over a bit, and Elliot turned his head toward him. "Evan?"
Gitano laughed. "Hey, Stabler," he waited until he had Elliot's eyes on him. "Choose." His hand slashed across Olivia's throat, and he took off running.
Elliot froze, his head turning, his eyes darting from Gitano's fading form to Olivia lying on the floor beside her son. He heard more footsteps, heard the familiar sound of fatal weapons firing off, and he snapped out of his daze. "Shit," he said, dropping his weapon and running toward her. "Liv, Liv, baby, no...no!
"I'm...I'm fine," she wheezed. "Where...where is he...El? Go...go get..."
"They got him, baby," he told her. He wrapped his hand around hers, pressing harder onto the gash on her neck. "He never made it out of here." He sighed and dropped his head to hers. "Vaporized." He kissed her forehead. "You were right," he whispered.
She shook her head. "No," she coughed and struggled to sit up. "Evan was," she said, turning her head to look at her son. "It's okay, honey, you can get up now. The...the man's gone."
Evan slowly rolled onto his back and then sat up. "He wasn't a man, mommy," he said, crawling toward Olivia and Elliot. "He was a monster."
The clicking of heels carried through the air, and as the doors slid open, several agents in black stood at attention and saluted. They all watched their Universal Commander enter the room, followed by her Second-In-Command, and they were flanked on either side by several armed agents, including Damon.
"At ease," Olivia shouted as she reached the front of the room. She rested her hands on the top of the podium as her agents simultaneously sat. "Thanks to critical speed and efficient work from the Global Preemptive Crime Prevention Task Force, Task: Cragen has been found to be merely a red herring, and Task: Stabler Two is safe and sound, and officially marked 'handled."
Applause erupted from the agents, and Olivia smiled. "More so," she began, "The GPCPTF has uncovered a mole among you. Special Ops very own Benedict Arnold."
Behind Olivia, Elliot stood, cracking his knuckles and rolling his neck. He moved subtly as a smile crept over his lips.
Olivia licked her own lips and suppressed the urge to moan as she felt her husbands hand on her ass, and she kept speaking. "One of you planned not only to aid an assailant in the termination of one of our cohorts in the NYPD, but also to frame two innocents for that termination, to terminate my mate and your SIC, and to kidnap and torture an innocent young one." She waited for the gasps and murmurs to stop. "That young one, my son Evan, is safe at home tonight, thanks to the dedication of Agent D. Stabler, Agent Tutuola, and Agent P. Declan, who were part of this covert mission."
Elliot squeezed the flesh in his right hand, groaned softly, and said a silent prayer in thanks that things had worked, and his family was safe. He cleared his throat. "Can I?" he asked, leaning toward his wife.
Olivia stepped back, allowing Elliot to step up to the podium. "I'm gonna make this short, and very clear. Plain English. No one fucks with my family and lives. No one. You have no idea who you've just pissed off here, and it's been left up to me to not only interrogate the piece of shit that tried to kill me and my wife, and take my son, but I also get to decide the...uh...'method of termination." He used his fingers to make an air-quote gesture as he said the phrase, then dropped his hands again. "Quick and painless my ass. You're gonna suffer and I am gonna watch, laughing. I hope you fucking..."
"Elliot!" Olivia snapped.
Elliot looked at her, took a breath, and turned back to the agents who all looked terrified. "Sorry." He turned to Damon and nodded.
Damon grinned as he stepped off of the platform and walked down the center aisle, coming to a stop right beside Agent Lake. "Agent Chester Lake, please rise," he ordered.
Lake looked up at him. "You're mistaken," he said, not moving.
"I assure you, my information is factual and, once again, I request that you rise," Damon said. Then he gritted his teeth. "Or I'll fucking pull you up by your balls."
Lake cleared his throat, then got to his feet. He shook his head as he put his hands behind his back, giving up and letting Damon cuff him. He looked toward Olivia. "Permission for inquiry, UCIC Benson, ma'am?"
"Granted," Olivia nodded.
"How did you know?" Lake asked, moving slowly as Damon escorted him to the front of the room.
Olivia grinned. "The Global Preemptive Crime Prevention Task Force," she said. "They're very good with uncovering secrets of this nature."
"We don't even have that taskforce," Lake shouted.
"Oh, yes we do," Olivia said, smirking. "In fact, Agent Lake, the whole thing was your idea."
Lake's face went white. "You mean...you...you wouldn't...that little bastard!"
"Hey!" Olivia barked. "You will refrain from calling my child such a foul name!" she yelled. She took two steps toward him, then she sneered, "You were right. He really is the greatest weapon I have."
Lake shook his head, and as he was removed from the white lecture room, he felt the eyes on him, the looks of disgrace his former colleagues were giving him, and he only hoped whatever method SIC Stabler decided on would kill him quickly. He knew, though, that that hope was in vain.
"UCIC Benson, Ma'am?" a female agent's voice called from the doorway as Lake and Damon left.
"Yes, Carnelle?" Olivia waited for a response in Elliot's arms.
"There's a visitor at the front gate for you, he seems terribly agitated that his handprints fail to open the access portal," Carnelle said. "Forgive the confusing information, Commander, but...he states that he is your male parental figure."
Olivia tilted her head, then looked at Elliot.
"Your what?" he asked, kissing her on the very end of her nose.
She let out a soft breath as she sank deeper into his hold. "My father."
A/N: Secrets revealed, a bit of lovin', and a trip to Italy...next.