Tag to "Serve or Protect". Andy's rant. Thank you again guys for your continuing support. It feels great! Hope you like this one. One shot.


"Why don't we take him out for dinner this week?" Luke asked her.

She was still flushed from his unexpected embrace. How was it even possible? It has not even been one hour since she had left his bed without looking back. Her mind began racing through options. Sure, she liked his body, and making love with him. They had fallen in a familiar pattern of sorts, her going to his place or him driving her home and spending the night. It was easy and natural and somehow she felt like she was a hundred years old, like she had been with the guy since third grade. She cared about him, but when she was with him, it lacked that singular sparkle that sweeps you off your feet when passion knocks you down and leaves you in a haze.

In spite of their close bond, she just could not give him her trust. Not yet. Not that he did not know about it already, she pondered. On fight night, Tommy McNally had made certain that everyone knew her father had a drinking problem. She averted her eyes, wondering if they would get there, if she would get there eventually. She let an evasive smile linger on her face. Check if my father is free? How lame was that?

This last day had been a complete nightmare from the start. Her father's apartment was in total disarray when she had dropped his groceries and he was not even there. Then, she had managed to lie to Luke, again. It was becoming more of a habit lately. What did it say about her? Later, against her better judgment, Monica being thrust into their day roster had been the final straw, leaving her bitter and angry. Sam's personal nurse was going to ruin the day for her. So she thought at the time. If only she had known…

Since their trip to Sudbury, she had been paired a couple of times with Swarek. They had fallen back into their familiar banter and bickering, and days spent with Sam were always a bonus in her dull life as a rookie. He was funny, efficient and great at his job, not to mention a fantastic teacher. She was looking forward to going on patrol with him and she was pleased that Luke trusted him with her life. She did not even attempt to deny her attraction to Swarek any more. After all, attraction was not a decision, it was merely a chemical reaction. There was nothing she could do about it. She simply chose not act upon it. Sam radiated empathy, and she could not help to find it a very sexy trait. She would feel suddenly overwhelmed by her emotions, drowning in raw, destructive, violent, instinctual yearning. Unfortunately, it takes only one sip of wine to tell if it the year is good. And she had had more than one sip already.

It was painful at times, like when she was on the verge of collapsing in the view room. She was listening to the dead man's wife confession, when he gave her proof positive that she had been right about her dad all along. He might have known she would hide in there. At this precise moment, she desperately longed for his touch not Luke's. Except for Sam who had been there to keep her safe today every step of the way, to protect her no matter what, she had felt trapped and resourceless in a disaster waiting to happen. She could fight for herself but it was a very different matter when it came to her dad. She loved him so much and at the same time, she hated their odd relation. She knew deep down that she could not take it any more. His devotion and his love, everything was overpowering at best, terrifying on bad days. And today had definitely been one of those days.

While Luke was too busy pushing paper and pinning gory pictures on his wall to realize that he was going to harm her for the sake of his investigation, Sam did a solid police work, kept her afloat, trusted his guts and saved the day. But most importantly, he never doubted her. And made sure she was okay.

That's why he never made detective and probably did not even bother to try, she thought. He was such a natural in the field.

She watched her father disappear inside the church and sighed. She was feeling rushed into a relationship she was not even certain that she had wanted in the first place. Luke being here with her and her father tonight had a bitter way of making it official.

She was so exhausted. She leaned against Luke and her heart felt empty.