ALL IN ALL
Another Andy & Sam story. Andy reflects on what's happened since the blackout.
But first I want everyone who reviewed/favorit'd/alert'd my previous attempts at writing RB fics. Thanks guys! Hope you enjoy reading this one.
All in all, it'd been a good week. She thought it was going to be weird at first, being away from the 15. Then realization dawned that she definitely needed time to think, to put things back in perspective, professionally and personally. When she had asked eons ago when she would be cleared and back on duty, it was merely wishful thinking. At some point, she was not even sure she wanted to be a cop any more.
It took her the best part of the week to pull herself together. She checked on Marie a couple of times, they talked about Benny and she helped her with her groceries and domestic chores. It felt good to learn that Sam Swarek, her training officer and the object of her unexpected affection, had too. He wouldn't advertise it, but he was a good guy.
When he did not call, she was challenged. Not that she expected him to show on her footsteps with a load of red roses, but yet, she was disappointed. More than disappointed, it hurt her. Actually, she felt sadder than she was prepared to admit. Of course, it made her question her true feelings for Luke. He had made himself scarce too, during that lonely week, but she was not surprised, he was a natural. He called her on a daily basis though, and came over once with some Chinese takeout, but she made sure he didn't sleep over. When he left, he asked her if she'd like to go to his cabin and she could not muster the courage to say no. "Oh… your cabin, yeah, yeah, it'd be great. Anytime." That was it. She secretly hoped that it would just go away. It didn't. She was stuck with this stupid date at the end of her first shift and she had to tell him that she wouldn't go. What's the best way to say to a guy that you want to break up with him when he's been nothing but gentle and nice? She winced. She did not have the single shred of the beginning of the tiniest clue. Even if Luke was not in her direct chain of command, he was still a superior officer, and it made her uncomfortable. It's difficult to know exactly where you stand when you're in a deferential position because you're a rookie. Strangely, that didn't apply to Sam because he was nothing like Luke. Not to mention that she could never put up with the way he envisioned the job and the world in general. She wanted to have a life and enjoy herself, and for what it was worth, she did not picture herself in a relationship with someone who was married to his work. First of all, she much preferred to be with a guy she was really in love with, even if he was wrong for her, than to stay in a tepid relationship with someone who was simply safe. At this point, she wasn't even sure that the couple of get together she'd had with Luke even qualified him as a boyfriend.
It hadn't taken her the entire week to know that she was not in love with Luke Callaghan. She knew the minute her lips had locked with Sam's. It was electrifying, terrifying, elating, and the right thing to do. She felt at home. It took her the entire week to finally decide she'll tell Sam that she was not afraid of the consequences, if he was willing to give it a try that is. They could be discreet. Even if affairs are not usually considered a good thing in the force, they would manage. She was so totally certain that she felt like going to the station right away and ask Sam. Patience. She was not ready to tell him that she loved him, because she didn't know if it was love yet. She'd been lusting after her TO from day one, she suspected that much. She still ached in retrospect when she thought about the way she rejected him on the parking lot that day they saved Em. She knew she had to let him know where she stood, and not talk about her feelings, whatever they were. She had to know whether it was simply animal attraction or more. And to find out, they had to act upon it. She grinned. The sooner the better, she thought. There was no way she could work with him with that kind of tension. She walked out from the ladies locker room with a spring in her step, checking her hair on her way to the morning briefing. Her eyes fanned the lobby and here he was and her heart jumped in her chest when she waved shyly at him. He barely acknowledged her but his face went hard. He resumed his conversation with Noelle without a pause.
For all she knew, their relation had been going down the drain ever since. She could not fathom why they could not talk about it. She could not forget herself for going to the cabin in a futile attempt to punish him. She never intended to make him jealous. She didn't know what to do. She was mad at him for his little stunt during the retraining session. For someone as secretive as Sam Swarek, -you don't go undercover for extensive periods of time when you're not, he made it pretty obvious that he was indeed fighting for her. She was hurt, even if deep down she knew she was the one at fault here. She never should have led him on. The love triangle she had created was turning into a living hell and with their line of work, it was far from clever. But, and it was not overthinking, given the same circumstances, she would have done exactly the same thing, over and over again. Best mistake of her life. Of course, she'd known all along that the attraction was there. She even flirted with him before choosing Luke over him. When they finally kissed, it turned into an epiphany of some sort and she didn't want to lose that sensation. Mostly, she was aching inside at Sam's rejection as much as at Luke's public display of affection. He was taking her for granted and she was letting him do it.
Bottom line, she was a coward.
This last day had been a total waste of her time and resources. She had drowned in paperwork, her two hours at dispatch turning into the worst bore ever and she didn't even know if Sam was still at the station or gone home, so much for working together and being taught the trade. She pushed the door of the Penny and checked the room. Jerry was his usual flirt around Traci, Dov was tipsy already, she made a mental note of having a conversation with him asap. She was very fond of Epstein and she didn't want him to become a drunk just because he thought he needed alcohol to fit in. He was a decent cop and a great guy. She spotted Chris, alone at their table and joined him, bracing herself against the possibility she could stumble upon Swarek. On the Luke front, she was safe, he was working late on a case. Isn't he always? she thought, and she felt as if a heavy load had been lifted from her shoulders. By the time he was finished, it'd be too late for a 'happy' reunion. One more day without dancing around the obvious elephant in the room. She sat her back opposite the room and leaned in.
The poor guy shrugged his shoulders with a weary smile. He shook his head.
"Anything new on the Gail front?"
His head dropped to his chest and he laced his fingers over his drink. Ginger ale. She suppressed a smile. It was neither the time nor the place to tease him. He was so clearly in pain that she didn't know what to do. She reached out to him and placed her hand on his.
"It'll get better," she said. "She'll come to her senses and she'll see the great guy you are."
He gave her a quick glance. His eyes were red from exhaustion.
"Are you having any sleep?" she asked, unable to conceal the concern in her voice.
"Not lately," he wiped his eyes and looked at her, trying to put on a brave front. "My neighbour, you know."
She nodded with a smile. She knew everything about it. Chris' neighbour was a jack of all trades, a good guy who didn't work on the same neighbour's skills you should expect in this kind of neighbourhood and it had proven difficult to sleep in the vicinity of his loud partying. A strange expression passed on his face and his eyes fluttered in the direction of the bar, right above her shoulder. He cleared his throat and had a sip of his drink. She let go of his hands.
"What's wrong? Is Gail here?"
"Don't. Don't turn around," he said in a low voice, red creeping up his cheekbones and ears.
"Swarek is here."
"So what?" she sniggered, glancing in the direction Chris had just pointed out. Sam's dark eyes drilled a hole in her heart. She winced and turned back to Chris. "My shift's over. He cannot make my life miserable here at the Penny."
"You sure of that?"
Maybe, it was contagious, but she flushed, averting her gaze from Chris. "What do you mean?"
"Andy, I know that I'm not the cleverest guy of the pack, but I'm not blind. You've be all awkward around him for weeks. And he has too. Are you having an affair with your training officer Andy? Gail told me it was kind of a no-no, you know," he volunteered, his face now totally red.
"No, I'm not!" she shouted. She immediately regretted it since the room fell into a momentary silence while she felt curious glares burning her back. "No," she said again in a low voice. "I'm not. There is nothing between Swarek and me. I'm with Luke."
Chris nodded, but his eyes didn't leave hers. "It doesn't look that way Andy. People are getting suspicious. They'll start to talk eventually. You should be more caref…."
"I told you," she raised her voice again before realizing it was not in her best interest to give a map of her love life in a very public place loaded with police officers, she hunched over the table, her voice only a whisper. "There's nothing between us." She took his hand again. "You've got to believe me. Nothing happened!"
He looked startled and leaned in. "What do mean, nothing happened?" he was whispering now. "Did you sleep with Swarek, Andy?"
"No, of course not. He's my TO."
"Why would he beat the crap out of your detective friend then? Why would he strand you at dispatch or at your desk with the paperwork of a lifetime? Why would he avoid you? It's like he doesn't even talk to you any more."
Oh my god, if Chris can see it, then everyone knows, she thought. "I'm a big girl Chris, I can take it. There's nothing," she said again tentatively, trying desperately to find a way out of this conversation without hurting Chris' feelings. She shook her head with more energy than she intended to and her glass shattered to the floor.
Then she heard a too familiar voice when Sam Swarek brushed passed her on his way out.
"Mmm… McNally, giving a hard time to one of your numerous suitors? Callaghan is a very tolerant man," he chuckled.
She raised her head and gave him a meaningful glare. His face was unreadable. She almost moaned in despair.
"It's not what you th…"
"Whatever McNally. Good night Diaz," he nodded before walking out the back door. His car keys dangled against the wood and he was gone.
She felt tears welling up in her eyes and anger building up. She chew at her lower lip for a split second, shook her head and went after him.
Chris Diaz turned slightly to watch her run after Swarek. When he went back to his drink, Dov Epstein was sitting in front of him. "Chris, you got to fill me in!" the young rookie was beaming in anticipation. "Andy and Swarek, huh?" he asked, his eyebrows waggling madly. "Come on, man, hit me!"
Chris sighed. I was going to be a long night.
for the time being, it's a one shot. tell me what you think: more or not?