Disclaimer: I don't own any characters you recognize. If I owned Eric and Calleigh…well, this pretty much explains what would happen. I tried to keep them in character as much as possible.
A/N: I know Speed is dead, but he seemed right in this part. Alexx also seemed right in the part I put her in and I tried to write her accurately. I hope I did okay. This idea is terribly overused, but it was the only one I had. Thanks to Jessica237 for betaing and fixing things that didn't make sense! By the way, this is the first fic I ever wrote for the show, so keep that in mind, and I hope you enjoy!
He wasn't used to feeling like this. It was completely new to him. It was so new; Eric Delko couldn't even define it. Who would have thought a simple smile could make him feel like this? He certainly never experienced that before now. Sure, he could smile at some girls and they would flip over him, but never had a girl's smile made him crazy. Never had a girl been able to make his brain forget how to string together two words when said girl was around him. Never had a girl been able to make him feel like this. And quite frankly the fact that this girl could do it was driving him insane!
"I'm guessing you just had a conversation with Calleigh," Speed deduced as soon as Eric walked into the break room.
"What makes you say that?" Eric asked.
"The look you have on your face," Speed answered. "It is such a tell-tale sign. Why don't you just ask her out already? You know you want to do it!"
"I know," Eric admitted, even though he hated to say so. "I just…I don't know. I don't want to get turned down, or make anything awkward, or, or just anything."
"You are chicken," Speed decided.
"I am not," Eric stated indignantly. "I just know she doesn't like me, so why ruin the good friendship we already have." With that Eric walked out of the break room, hating the fact that he had to have this conversation with Speed every time Eric saw him.
Calleigh Duquesne was standing in front of her target. The gun was in her hands, her earmuffs were on, but she couldn't bring herself to shoot the gun. This was crazy, she thought to herself! Nothing could make her unable to shoot a gun. Nothing could make her forget about her work. Nothing, except Eric. One conversation could leave her so confused that she couldn't think about anything else for quite some time!
The thing that left Calleigh so confused was the fact that she didn't know how Eric felt. Calleigh knew she liked him, but love…that was a different ball game. She hadn't really been in love since Jake, and everyone knew that turned out badly. She wasn't really sure what love meant anymore.
Calleigh had a strict rule about making the first move. She wasn't going to do it. She had tried that with John recently and Jake back at the academy, and those relationships ended. Her logic was that when she made the first move, things were not going to turn out well.
"Hello, earth to Calleigh Duquesne. Please come in," Speed called.
"Very funny Tim," Calleigh said. "And I know. 'Where are those results? You were supposed to deliver those an hour ago.' " Calleigh mocked.
"That's a good question. Where are they?" Speed asked.
"They are in progress," Calleigh told him evasively.
"Well would you hurry up with it already?" Speed said, aggravated.
"Alright, alright," Calleigh agreed as Speed walked out of her lab.
Calleigh sighed. This situation with Eric was driving her crazy. It was so pathetic! Never had a man been able to make her feel like this. Never had a man been able to make her act so foolish. This had to stop! And somehow, it would!
The next day soon became the next week and Calleigh was still frustrated. She wanted this feeling of hers to stop. She only knew one way to make it stop without breaking her rules about first moves and bringing down her infamous walls that were causing huge problems.
Calleigh was in the break room trying to relax for what she was about to do when Alexx walked in briskly.
"How are you, honey," Alexx questioned.
"I'm fine," Calleigh answered automatically.
"I've seen people who are fine, and you are not one of them, sweetheart. Tell me what's wrong," Alexx practically ordered, even though she already knew it had something to do with Eric. Alexx was not stupid, in any way, and she had seen the way Calleigh looked at Eric, and the way he looked back at Calleigh. The only problem was they kept dancing around each other. It was bound to drive one of them crazy, but she never figured Calleigh would go first.
"It's not really important Alexx," Calleigh told her. Calleigh didn't want to be talked out of her idea. She knew it wasn't a good idea, but it was the only way she could get relief from these feelings. Calleigh also knew it was probably, okay it was definitely, a form of running away, but she didn't know what else to do.
"I don't believe you are telling me the truth. In fact, you are not even putting parts of the truth in this whole conversation," Alexx told her.
"Well," Calleigh said, looking for an excuse to leave, "Here's the truth, I am just drowning in open cases and paperwork, therefore I am really stressed. This break is not making it any better, so I'm going to get back to work. Bye!" Calleigh shot Alexx a smile that was anything but genuine.
As soon as Calleigh had gone, Alexx sighed. She had seen the forced smile Calleigh had given, and knew that open cases and paperwork was not the problem. "I hope Calleigh sorts her feelings out with Eric in a sensible way rather than running away from it all. If I know her, she is in a form of running away at this very second."
Calleigh stuck her head into Horatio's office door. "Can I talk to you for a minute? That is, as long as you aren't too busy."
Horatio smiled as he looked up from his desk. "I am never too busy to have a conversation with you ma'am."
Horatio's lingering habit of calling Calleigh ma'am always made her smile, but not today. She was too lost in her thoughts of what she was about to do.
Horatio noticed right away that something was wrong. "What's wrong, Calleigh?"
"Oh, nothing's wrong, I just have to give you my letter of resignation. I'm really sorry that I have to resign, but I couldn't think of anything else to do. I'm also really going to miss you, and everyone else. Could you please pass that along? Good-bye Horatio," Calleigh said all in one breath as she threw a letter on his desk and turned to walk out the door.
"Nothing's wrong? Calleigh, wait." Horatio called out in a quick attempt to make her stay just a little longer to try and make some sense out of what she just said.
"What?" she asked stopping, still obeying the orders of her boss, or former boss, or whatever. Calleigh just wanted to get out of there, and not make this any harder than it had to be. The longer she stayed there the more likely she was to see someone else and do more explaining. She didn't think she could handle more explaining.
"Why are you resigning? I thought you liked it here, liked your job," Horatio asked. He was just as perceptive as Alexx, and he saw the same things that Alexx did between Eric and Calleigh. He also knew they kept missing each other. Horatio knew that Calleigh wasn't likely to tell him that, in fact, he was sure she wouldn't. If he could just get her to stay in town for a little while longer, Horatio thought he could get Eric to talk to her. Of course, he would have to be very discreet about it. Horatio quickly snapped out of his thoughts as he realized he had a more important task at hand. First he had to get Calleigh to stay.
"I do like my job, Horatio. I also really like it here. I just…I just feel like it's time for me to move on," Calleigh again turned to leave, trying to be faster this time.
As she walked out Horatio still had one desperate attempt to try. "Can we still reach you at home?"
Calleigh didn't answer and Horatio sighed. While he was debating on whether to call Eric or not, his cell phone beeped. He had a text message. When he flipped open the phone he smiled. It was from Calleigh. It read the answer to his question. "For the time being, but if you are thinking of sending a SWAT team to make me stay, you'd better hurry. I'm not sure how long I'll be at home. -CD"
Horatio laughed. He wasn't sure what made her answer his question, but time was still of the essence. If her SWAT team remark was any indication though, maybe she really didn't want to leave. Horatio could only hope her reason for leaving was Eric, and that they would both get this thing sorted out and do it quickly. After all, Calleigh was very important to this lab and if her reason for leaving wasn't Eric…well, Horatio refused to think about it.
As Horatio dialed Eric's number, he suddenly changed his mind. He snapped his phone shut, and thought about this a little bit more. Horatio decided to call Speed instead. Eric was much more likely to rush to Calleigh's apartment if Speed informed him of Calleigh's resignation. There was no doubt in Horatio's mind that Speed would be able to make Eric reach Calleigh quicker than Horatio could ever hope to do. Horatio opened his phone again, this time to call Speed.
"Man, you are such an idiot," Speed said to Eric as he walked into the Trace lab.
"Thanks a lot, Speed," Eric said laughing, used to Speed's remarks by now. "Whatever made you give me such a sweet compliment?"
"When you hear what it is you won't be laughing anymore, my friend," Speed told Eric seriously.
Eric could see that something was really wrong and became a little worried. "What's wrong?"
"Well," Speed began to explain, "Usually when a man and a woman are in love with each other, said man asks said woman out to dinner, to a movie, etc. Then—"
"Wait," Eric interrupted, not as worried anymore. "Is this going to be another one of those conversations where you continue to tell me that Calleigh likes me and I should just ask her out and yadda yadda?"
"Well, yes and no. You are going to have a particularly hard time asking her out considering as how she just resigned," Speed told Eric, waiting for Eric to register what he just said.
"Resigned!" Eric cried. "How could she do that?"
"Well, she typed out a little letter and gave it to Horatio." Speed quit kidding the minute he saw the look on Eric's face. "But if you want me to be serious, dude, she probably just got tired of waiting for you."
"Horatio, did Calleigh really resign?" Eric asked, barely giving himself time to open Horatio's office door.
"Well, apparently that's what this is," Horatio confirmed, holding up the letter.
"Why would she do such a thing?" Eric asked again.
"She said it was time for her to move on," Horatio told Eric, wondering if he should say what he really thought. He decided he would ask, out of politeness. "Do you want to know what I really think though?"
"I'm going to hear it anyway, so I might as well say yes," Eric joked, wondering how he managed to joke when he felt so horrible.
"Well," Horatio began, "I know both of you very well, therefore I know why Calleigh felt the need to resign, and I think you do too. I will not lose my ballistics expert over something like this. She will say it will be a problem with the jobs and with Stetler, but frankly this lab needs her, you two are too mature to let this get in the way of your work, I would hope, and I can always handle Stetler if need be."
At this, Eric's jaw dropped. He couldn't believe Horatio knew how he felt about Calleigh. Horatio had mentioned, evasively, that Calleigh liked him as well. As he was contemplating this, Horatio's door burst open again.
"Has Calleigh really resigned??" Alexx cried.
Horatio made a grim face, getting ready to answer this question many times. Apparently he forgot to tell Speed there was no need to spread this news around. "Yes, Alexx, for the time being she has."
Alexx suddenly turned to Eric with fire in her eyes. "You had better go to Calleigh's house and make her stay. She is just running away from her feelings for you. Tell her you feel the same way."
Horatio nodded his head. "Don't even try to argue with her Eric, I could see from the way you rushed in here that you are concerned and—" Before Horatio could finish, Eric was out the door.
"Looks like he's not going to argue," Alexx observed while Horatio smirked.
Calleigh heard the knock on her door, but she refused to answer it. She didn't want to see anyone. She didn't want to be convinced to stay. Calleigh just couldn't walk through that lab every day, seeing Eric, knowing how much she loved him, but being unable to have him, because she thought he didn't love her.
"Calleigh, I know you are in there," Eric called. He had seen her car in the drive. "Can't you please open the door?"
"I don't really have the time to talk right now," Calleigh said through the door. "I'm sort of busy."
"Calleigh, you just can't resign. Not now, not ever," Eric told her, hoping she would open the door.
He was right; her door did open, but she only allowed a small crack. He could barely see her face. "Why can't I resign? I just can't walk around that lab every day, seeing you, wanting you to love me, but knowing you don't." Calleigh gasped as soon as she said that and tried to shut her door again, but Eric managed to stop her with his foot.
"Calleigh, I love you. I always have and I always will. More than you will ever know," Eric said, hoping she would believe him.
"You do love me?" Calleigh breathed. "Really?"
"Can you open your door now?" Eric asked softly.
Calleigh didn't argue anymore. She wanted to know what he was going to do to prove that he loved her. She opened her door all the way, and before she could do anything else, Eric's lips were on hers. She had been waiting so long for this moment. When he softly nipped on her lower lip, she moaned softly as she parted her lips for him. This was not how she had imagined it to be; it was a thousand times better.
Eric couldn't believe he was kissing Calleigh. Calleigh Duquesne was kissing him. That was an even more amazing fact. He wanted air, needed air, but didn't want to break the kiss. If he did, he was afraid Calleigh's rational side would kick in and make her run. He wanted to savor this kiss as long as he could.
Finally he couldn't stand it any longer. He had to break the kiss. As soon as he did he looked at Calleigh. She was smiling, a soft, lovely smile. He was sure it was the most beautiful thing he had ever seen. That smile said so much. He knew that she didn't regret that kiss, and that she might even let him do it again.
"So, about work?" Eric began, waiting for her to answer.
"I would actually love to stay, but what about Stetler?" Calleigh asked, unable to suppress the question, even though she wasn't sure she really wanted to know. She rested her head against his chest waiting for the answer.
"Horatio promised he would take care of Stetler for us," Eric told her, running his fingers through her soft hair.
Calleigh smiled again. "Horatio knows? Well, I'm not surprised." She lifted her head up and kissed him, nipping on his bottom lip almost instantly. Eric, of course, complied with her request without a second thought.
Later that night, Eric knew he couldn't possibly be any happier. In one night, he had all he ever wanted. Calleigh was lying in bed with him, her head resting comfortably on his chest. He would have thought she was asleep, but she was drawing lazy shapes on his abdomen. This was better than Eric had ever imagined it could be.
Calleigh was thinking the same thing. She knew it was impossible for her to be any happier. Eric's chest was certainly more comfortable than any pillow she had ever bought. He was running his fingers through her hair, so there was no way he was asleep. With him doing that in such a steady rhythm though, she felt almost ready to fall asleep.
Eric could tell Calleigh was getting ready to succumb to sleep and he was getting quite sleepy himself. He had to tell Calleigh something before she could fall asleep though. "Calleigh," he said.
All he got in reply was a sleepy, "Hmm?"
"I love you, you will never know how much."
Calleigh turned her head to look at him. "I love you so much, Eric," she told him, knowing the weight of those words. She also knew she had never meant anything as much in her life as she meant this.
Eric smiled. He never knew six words could make him so happy. After she told him that, he closed his eyes, knowing he could go to sleep now. Feeling the light weight of Calleigh's head on his chest and continuing to comb his fingers through her hair, he knew this was the way he wanted to fall asleep every night.
Even though it had taken them so long to get to this point, all that mattered now was: they were here. Eric was going to savor every moment. That was the last thought that crossed his mind before he drifted into a deep sleep, filled with dreams of Calleigh Duquesne. His Calleigh Duquesne.
Yeah, I know the end was a bit corny, but I am terrible at endings. I would be extremely grateful if you could review. As I mentioned, this is my first fic so any criticism would be helpful and appreciated. I do hope you enjoyed it a little bit though.