A/N: Hello, faithful readers! May I now present for your reading enjoyment "It's the Great Pumpkin, Cal Lightman," a Lie to Me fanfiction extravaganza presented in multiple chapters, the specific number of which has yet to be determined.
Yes. What's going on re: the show kinda sucks, right? Well, that's no reason that we over here at can't have a little ~fun~ with these characters. The writers won't make 'em do what we want them to? Fine. Then ~I~ will.
The title will make more sense later-if it doesn't make sense to you right now. Also, this is my first time writing a character that is not Cal or Gillian (minus one line of dialogue in my last fic from Loker), so if it's not up to par, I'm sorry. This fic is here for a little bit of fun before Halloween.
/the longest A/N evar.
Disclaimer: Fine. I guess I'll put a real disclaimer here. I don't own them. If I did, Cal would've gotten punched a LOT harder last episode.
Emily Lightman brought a rush of cold D.C. air with her as she bustled into the Lightman Group building.
Her long curly brown hair was swept up into a ponytail atop her head and a stylish black jacket covered her red and black plaid shirt. The bottom of her jeans was slightly wet from the rain and her black rain boots held a collection of droplets. She shook her umbrella, fumbling with it slightly as she placed it in the bin next to the front desk.
Her eyes surveyed the expanse in front of her and she hoped they'd land on the person she had come to see. Finding the halls empty save for a few interns, she continued down the hall, her ponytail swaying good-naturedly behind her.
As she approached the particular office she sought, she began to haphazardly unravel her scarf from around her neck. Finding the door to the office half closed, she rapped on it softly while peeking her head through.
Dr. Gillian Foster looked up from her computer at the tentative knock to see the teenager peering through the door, her wide brown eyes shining.
"Emily!" Gillian greeted, rather surprised too see her visitor—a genuine smile came across her face, "Hi."
"Hey, Gill," Emily said returning the smile and adding in a little wave. "Mind if I come in?"
"Sure!" Gillian offered with a slight indication of her head.
Emily finished unwrapping her scarf and she took the liberty of setting her yellow messenger bag along with her scarf on the floor near the door of Gillian's office.
"Sit!" Gillian offered, somewhat awkwardly, but Emily just smiled and obliged.
"It's pouring out there!" Emily said emphatically, making herself comfortable in the chair.
Gillian took in the teenager's rain speckled jeans, "I can tell," she said as she closed her laptop and leaned back slightly in her chair. She had been working on the budget for the Lightman Group and it had just begun to give her a headache, so she was thankful for Emily's visit as it served the perfect distraction. "I've never really gotten used to the absolute coldness in the winters here—or the wetness."
Emily laughed, "Hey, I was born here and I'm not used to it, either!"
Gillian laughed slightly at this, "So, you come straight from school?"
"Yep." She nodded affirmation.
"How was it?" Gillian asked, making small talk.
"It was fine. I had a math test. Think I did pretty well." Emily shrugged.
A silence fell between the two that had the potential to be very awkward. However, these two people were actually quite comfortable with each other. Gillian had always loved Emily, she had always felt at ease around her, and Emily had always felt a specific type of respect for Gillian—that respect eventually manifested love. The moment could have been awkward, save for love.
"You looking for your dad? He's out on a case." Gillian thought that perhaps Emily was looking for Cal.
"No, actually, I came to see you." Emily responded, a slight bit of mischief making its way into her eye and into her voice.
Gillian regarded the girl with exaggerated suspicion. She had known Emily long enough to know that something was coming. She simply didn't know precisely what.
"Oh, you did?"
"Yeah." Emily said matter-of-factly, trying to suppress one of her patented smiles.
"Okay…" Gillian said cautiously.
"We haven't seen each other in awhile and I just wanted to…check in."
"Oh you did, did you?" A smile came to Gillian's lips as she said this.
"Yeah." At Gillian's pointed look she added, "Can't I stop by just to say hi?" Emily tried to look incredulous, but she just looked adorable.
"Sure you can." Gillian's tone suggested in no uncertain terms that she didn't believe the teenager's guise for one second. She turned her head slightly to the right in an attempt to guess what had actually brought Emily to her office on this October afternoon.
Emily shook her head and laughed, "You've been working with my dad too long. You used to be so trusting!"
Gillian laughed outright at that remark. "That is too true, Emily. That is too true."
Emily beamed at Gillian before she shifted awkwardly in her chair. "So…. are you still dating that guy… what's his name? Dave?"
Emily didn't miss the look of shock that came across Gillian's features, but she did miss the slight one of hurt. Gillian missed Dave—he had walked out of her life unexpectedly without a proper goodbye and she still thought about him often and missed him more than that. She hated the empty side of her bed and she hated waking up alone. And she had to get her own yogurt in the morning, which she was certainly not a fan of.
Emily was looking at Gillian expectantly, eyes wide, "That was quite the transition." Gillian stated simply, no sign of irritation in her voice. She found it impossible to be irritated with Emily Lightman, blunt teenager extraordinaire.
Emily shrugged, "I'm my father's daughter," the twinkle ever present in her eyes.
Gillian laughed, "That you are." She picked up a pen from her desk and began to fidget with it—"And to answer your question, no. I'm not seeing Dave anymore."
"Oh, okay." Gillian observed Emily's reaction—the corners of her mouth twitched upwards briefly and Gillian realized that Emily had just flashed happiness.
The strangeness of this conversation did not escape Gillian and she found herself even more curious than she previously had been about where it was heading, "Why?"
"Oh, just wondering," Emily said as she idly picked at her fingernails which were coated in black nail polish. Black was usually not the go-to nail color for Emily Lightman, but it was October and Halloween was quickly approaching—and it was a holiday that the teenager wholly embraced.
"Mm-hmm." Was Gillian's reply.
An air of fun hung in between them as they looked at each other, both with eyes smiling. Gillian always felt carefree around Emily—Emily just had a very uplifting personality for which Gillian was always thankful.
"So…" Emily began innocently, playing with the button on her black jacket, "are you doing anything for Halloween?"
Realization swept over Gillian Foster as the question hit her ears. So That's what Emily was up to.
Gillian considered the question for a moment. Growing up, Halloween had always been one of her favorite holidays. She'd had a sweet tooth, she'd suspected, from the moment she was born, and so any holiday that centered primarily around candy was an excellent holiday as far as she was concerned. Plus, it seemed to be the only holiday on which she couldn't remember her parents fighting. Except one year when the entire family—grandmothers, aunts, uncles, everyone almost came to blows. Halloween wasn't really the same after that. She'd stopped going trick-or-treating when she was 12, but she still held a very particular fondness for the holiday in her heart.
The last few years were spent with Alec. There had been years where they'd gone to parties, enjoying the company of other couples. But as the other couples had children, the all-inclusive couples-only parties grew thin until they became virtually extinct.
Even still, Halloween had been fun. But, Gillian mused, she could divide their experiences as a couple concerning the holiday into two categories—pre-Sophie and post-Sophie. The last couple of years were the post-Sophie years. They had placed a bowl of candy in front of their door with a polite note suggesting the children take one piece of candy, gone to dinner and come home to go to bed early. Alec had insisted that it would be too painful to see the various children in their adorable Halloween costumes after having lost Sophie. Gillian hadn't agreed with Alec—it was one of the first times she realized how different they truly were. Alec wanted to avoid his pain and his grief as though they didn't exist—Gillian wanted to embrace her pain and her grief and deal with them so she could move on. But, Gillian, ever the good wife, went with how Alec felt and ignored her own desires.
For a brief moment, and although she couldn't say quite why, Gillian considered lying to Emily. She mentally chastised herself for the thought, but it had come anyway.
"I don't think I have anything planned." She said, giving a semi-solid answer but still allowing for some wiggle room.
Emily seemed to find this funny as she chuckled a little bit, obviously recognizing what Gillian was doing. "Well," she said dramatically, "You should come over and hang out with my dad and me!"
Gillian stifled a groan. She had known that's why Emily was asking but a part of her had been hoping it was for some other reason.
"Emily…." Gillian said in a cautionary tone.
"Come on! It'll be fun! We'll carve pumpkins and watch movies and hand out candy to the kids!"
At Emily's last promise, Gillian's heart lurched. She felt an odd feeling climb into her body and it felt like a strange mixture of sadness, excitement, longing and happiness all rolled into one.
"I don't know if that's such a good idea." She replied, though she couldn't help but smile at the excited expression Emily was wearing.
The teenager's face fell. "What? Why not? You'd rather sit alone at home?" Emily tried to maintain a playful tone but the hurt she felt at the idea of Gillian slighting her shone through.
"Em, it's not that…" Gillian was quick to reassure.
"What, then?" Emily questioned as she folded her arms across her chest in a somewhat defensive posture.
Gillian wasn't sure how to proceed—she felt uncomfortable saying what she needed to say—"I just…" she faltered, "I don't think your mother would be too pleased with that."
Gillian knew how Zoe liked family time—it was sacred to her and it didn't matter that she and Cal and been divorced for years. The Lightmans spent the holidays as a family. Gillian had overheard Cal ask Zoe many years ago if Gillian could join them for Easter. It was a mundane holiday, so to speak, but Alec was out of town and Gillian would be spending it alone. Cal took it upon himself to try to rectify that. Gillian had been coming down the hall when she heard raised voices coming from Cal's office and she quickly got the gist of what he and Zoe were arguing about. There was no way that Gillian Foster was going to be present at a Lightman Family Holiday—not even one so casual as Easter.
No, Zoe would flip if Gillian spent the holiday with the Lightmans. Not that Gillian wanted to spend any time with Zoe, but she could tell Emily wanted her there.
"What? That's why?" Emily uncrossed her arms, "Then it's totally not a problem! My mom's going to be out of town—she's working on a case, so she'll be gone the whole weekend, Halloween included." Emily looked at Gillian with a self-satisfied expression on her youthful face.
Gillian still hesitated, "I don't know, Em…"
The source of Gillian's hesitation was unclear even to herself. She considered her reluctance, but she couldn't quite place it. Well, that was a half-truth. If she really cared to place it, she most certainly could. It had to do with one Cal Lightman and the feelings that the man stirred up within every part of her being. At that moment, however, she did not care to place it and so she brought her attention back to the matter at hand: to spend Halloween with her favorite father-daughter duo, or to spend it by herself?
Emily regarded her with a look of slight suspicion, before widening her big brown eyes, "Oh, come on, Gill, please? It'll be fun."
Gillian crossed her arms in front of her chest and examined Emily. The excited and hopeful expression she wore was adorable and near comical. She couldn't quite deny the teenager despite the slight desire she had to do so—Emily was just too cute, and in all honesty, she was just too important to Gillian.
Gillian sighed before fixing Emily with what she hoped was a semi-stern look, "I don't know, I'll think about it."
She could tell by Emily's reaction that the look was not, in fact, stern. Emily beamed, "Okay!" she rushed out excitedly.
"Hey, I said maybe." Gillian reminded, "Not yes."
Emily got up from the chair, "yeah, I know," she said, clearly taking Gillian's 'maybe,' as a 'yes,' anyway.
Gillian just laughed slightly and shook her head—She couldn't help but feel a surge of happiness at seeing the excitement her response provided the teenager.
"Well, I better get going," Emily moved to pick up her belongings. As she strapped the messenger bag across her body she beamed at Gillian, "It was good to see you! And if I don't see you before, I'll see you on Halloween!" Emily laughed and turned to leave, tossing out a "Bye, Gill!" over her shoulder.
Gillian shook her head and reached to open her computer, "Bye, Emily." She returned.
She tried to focus on the budget on the screen but found that she couldn't do it. She felt queasy at the idea of spending Halloween with the Lightmans. But she also felt excited. She chastised herself as she realized that much like Emily, she, too, had taken her own 'maybe,' for a 'yes.' She gazed at the spreadsheet in front of her, none of it really registering. She supposed she could find a way to get out of it if she wanted to.
Her heart jumped up into her throat and then sunk back down into her stomach when she realized that she didn't really want to get out of it. She remained unconvinced that it was a good idea, but her heart simply didn't seem to care.
Chuckling to herself, she turned her attention back to the task at hand: keeping the head of the Lightman Group above murky financial water.
My goal is to finish this story by All Hallow's Eve.
in the upcoming chapters we have- father/daughter pumpkin patch patching, pumpkin carving, awkwardness, movies, and tons more stuff.
click that button. don't be a stranger. kthxbai.