A/N: What a lame way to get rid of Stella. It sounded lame when they announced it, but it was even LAMER on film. At least it was Lindsay who got her letter, her kiddo. I'm still upset that Mac didn't get to acknowledge her leaving though. It just was painful to watch the few minutes that included her. :( Anyway, this is my contribution to it.
Disclaimer: I don't own any of it or Stella would still be on the show.
The envelope had been sitting on his desk for weeks. Her stamp from the NOLA Crime Lab colored the left corner of the envelope, and her familiar handwriting stared back at him. He traced each curl of her writing, trying to imagine her holding the pen and writing his name with that signature thousand watt smile on her lips. He swallowed hard and ran his hand over his mouth. He wanted to read it, get some solace from it, but opening the letter would be the final blow; it was the final step of admitting that she wasn't coming back.
"Hey, Mac." He looked up to the door and smiled at Lindsay, standing with her medal in her hand and Danny at her side. He nodded and smiled back as she continued, "Thanks." She squeezed her husband's hand and walked down the hall with him, his arm sneaking around her shoulders and holding her close.
He looked down at the envelope and finally decided it was time.
Of all the letters I've sent over these past few weeks, this one has to be the hardest. I never pictured things happening this way, but I guess everything happens for a reason, right? I feel like there are so many things left unfinished between us, so many things I never got to say to you, do with you; and yet, being this far away makes it all so final. It's been a hard transition knowing I won't wake up and come into the office and see you. You won't be there to catch me when I fall, you're not going to be the one to get dirty when it hits the fan. No coffee runs, no sit down dinners, no spicy orange chicken take outs with the only guy I've ever let in as much as you. It all feels like some weird dream now. So many memories but they're all so long ago that… it just doesn't feel real.
Take care of the team, Mac, as only you can. I'm so proud of you and I can't wait to hear all about the wonderful things that they accomplish. I will always carry you deep in my heart agapi mou.
He set the letter down and studied the two pages, inhaling her soft scent from them and gritting his jaw, willing himself not to cry. Two months had been two too long. His gaze dropped to the photo of her on his desk and he nodded, he knew what he had to do.
"Detective Bonasera, there's a guest for you down in the front lobby."
She adjusted her blazer and dress pants as she exited her small office and headed down to the lobby in the elevator; her mind racing as she tried to figure out what meeting she'd forgotten about or what event was coming up that she'd not remembered. She stepped off the elevator and headed to the desk, stopping short as the man standing there turned around and shrugged. Her eyes watered slightly as she moved toward him and cocked her head, "Mac?"
He pulled her letter from his pocket and sighed, "Got your letter."
She chuckled lightly and crossed her arms over her chest, "I see… and you came down to alert me that the postal service is working?"
He smiled and took a tentative step toward her, "No…"
Her eyebrow rose and she moved to him. With her standing a breath away from him he was able to really see how hard this job had been on her physically, the thinner frame, the tired eyes, the weaker smiles. He took her hand in his and sighed, "I came to…"
Her eyes lit up excitedly as he paused and he sighed, he couldn't take her away from all this. This is what she wanted, "I came to see what you've been up to."
She dropped slightly and shrugged, "Oh…"
They stood in silence for a few minutes, trying to figure out the next move before she met his eyes and looked outside, "Mac, I…"
He silenced her with his fingers on his lips, "Stella… I didn't… I…"
She smiled lightly and pressed a gentle kiss to his fingers before moving his hand away and leaning up to hug him, "I missed you too, Mac."
His arms tightened around her and held her gently as she clung to him, "Stell… I want…"
She pulled back and met his eyes, "You what? What does Mac want?"
Her fingers traced up his back to his neck and brushed over the skin there tenderly as her eyes met his, staring openly into them expecting nothing but the truth.
"I want… you."