Based on "Baggage", from Law & Order: Criminal Intent. Hopefully, they're sufficiently related for this to be understood. Well, that's what I read on Wikipedia – *fingers crossed*.

Disclaimer: I don't own Paris Enquêtes Criminelles or any of its characters.


Mélanie suppressed a sigh of frustration. The case had really been a sad one, a sad state of affairs on many levels. Most especially, she thought, the reason why the victim had been killed. Because she'd trusted her murderer, because she'd seen in him someone good, someone worthy of care and affection, even of love. She'd loved him. But all he'd seen in her was anger and resentment; she'd reminded him of who he really was, she'd dared to dream that someone like him could care for someone like her; she'd hadn't been as sick or warped or twisted as him. She'd just been wrong.

He'd been mad at her for being so 'dumpy', for even daring to look at him and think she might be able to have him, because he was so much better than her! But what had he been doing all along; masquerading as someone else, as someone he wasn't, and every time he did that, he only got let down again, he only let himself down.

She had wanted to care for him, had cared for him, for the qualities she'd seen he had, not those she'd invented, but then, he'd only been playing a game with her, hadn't he? Those qualities she'd cared about, the man that she'd cared about, was nothing more than a ruse, a deception.

He was blind and she was too, in a sense, as she'd allowed herself to buy into his opinion of the person he was, and not the reality of it; but she, at least, had had no choice in the matter, whereas he had.

She had seen a nicer aspect of a deeply disturbed person, and she'd been willing to go all out for him, to really, truly care for him, and all that had done was disgust him because she dared to look at him when she was so much lower than him, because she hadn't bought into the same lie he had, because she'd believed in love and not just the power game.

She would have happily kept him grounded, kept him realistic, and cared for him anyway; she might have been able to help him if he'd let her, she might have helped him to see that the world was not as he liked to believe it, that the things he thought were so big and important really weren't; the flash things, the expensive suits, cufflinks, the women who were worthy of him! But, to him, the world was only a series of objects, those that he could attain, those he could not, those that he wanted, and those that he'd never want!

She had been one of those that he'd never want.

And so he'd killed her.

In the end, the biggest insult of all that had been the one he'd perpetrated upon himself, thinking that only status, only power and money meant anything in this world, and that without all of that glitz and glamour, who was he really and what was he worth; who was he to be wanted by someone else.

A pity he'd never seen it that way, though.

He probably never would. The world consisted of objects, and he thought of himself as just as much an object as all the rest of the people in it. He let himself down more than he could know, and then, because he couldn't face that truth, he'd committed a disgusting crime, he'd murdered someone.

All of those things he'd said, of course he had meant them, hadn't believed in them, they'd just been words, hollow words. And so, no, the problem with men (or women) wasn't that they wanted for things they couldn't have, and didn't care for those that they could - wasn't that just a fallacy, in itself - the problem was that they talked too much. They spun false worlds with those words, they tried to fool the world, and then they fell for the same lies, they believed them, too.

Too many words, too many lies, too many deceptions.

Mélanie just couldn't get that into her head; it was beyond sad, it was plain just… discouraging.

Oh, God, she thought, am I turning into a romantic, now! But, underneath, the thought didn't bother her. She'd go home and, in her dreams, it would warm her. She'd never want someone who didn't want her for her, that was just the way it was. And if she ever did, she'd be deeply saddened (and ashamed) for herself. In any case, she'd never want such a person for keeps.