Disclaimer: I own nothing

This was supposed to be a one shot but it just kept growing


Olivia came awake with a startled gasp, shooting upright in bed and looking around the strange bedroom. It took her a few seconds to realise where she was as fear clawed at her throat and had her hand reaching for her gun.

She came to the realisation she was in Alex's spare room, wearing borrowed pj's the same time her hand hit her holster and she paused. She sighed as she remembered the events that had brought her here tonight.

It had been two months since Alex had left the team and headed for the Congo so she had been surprised when her mobile buzzed and she had seen Alex's name flashed on the screen. Alex had asked prior to leaving the unit if she could keep in contact and Olivia had indicated she could but hadn't really expected she would after last time.

So the text message had come as a surprise as had the request for dinner and movies. Olivia had spoken with the Captain who gave her the night off and she had met their ex ADA at one of their old favourite stomping grounds, an Indian restaurant not far from Alex's.

To say she was surprised by the state of Alex was an understatement. She looked pale, tired and way too thin, her unusually casual clothes of jeans and hoodie hanging on her. Something wasn't right. But Alex had met her with a smile and a hug, had eaten like there was no tomorrow, told incredible tales about the beauty of the Congo and Olivia fell into the old times just like that.

At the movies they caught the latest comedy out with Ben Stiller in it and shared a large popcorn between them. After the movies they went back to Alex's where Alex had plied her with alcohol as she told tales of their latest escapades at the unit. Alex thought it hilarious as she told how she'd been poisoned by the mushrooms. Not the poison part obviously but the things she'd said while under the influence.

When she had tried to leave at the end of the evening Alex asked her to stay. Olivia had looked at her a long time and seeing how jittery Alex was agreed. Alex's relief was palpable. So they said goodnight and went their separate ways. Alex into her room, Olivia into the spare.

Olivia frowned when she realised something had woken her. Maybe Alex was up and walking around? Maybe it was just a strange bed or a dream she couldn't remember. Shrugging she lay down before bolting out of bed at Alex's piercing scream.

She grabbed her gun and tore out of the room, across the hall and into Alex's room, training the gun around the room looking for a threat. All she could see was Alex tossing and turning on the bed in the throes of a nightmare. Olivia could hear her begging someone not to hurt her, not to shoot and figured she was having nightmares about her shooting.

Placing her gun aside she sat down on the bed next to Alex and gently reached out to shake her shoulder.

"Alex" she whispered and Alex bolted out of bed faster than you could say Jiminy Cricket. Olivia's heart broke as she took in her friends wild eyes as she looked for an escape route and she realised she was still caught in the terror of her nightmare.

"Alex it's me Olivia" she said softly and watched the blonde blink before her face crumbled along with her legs and she slid to the floor crying. She looked like a small child in her baggy pyjamas, messed up hair and tear streaked face. Olivia swore softly and raced for her, falling to her knees and wrapping her arms around the younger woman soothed her as she cried. "It's Ok Alex, I'm here, let it out Lex" she soothed "I won't let anyone hurt you, you're safe" she rocked Alex as she cried, speaking to her quietly until the sobs turned to sniffles and then quiet sighs.

"Lex, sweetheart, what's going on?" Olivia asked and Alex shook her head

"Not now Liv, I'm too tired. Can we talk in the morning?" Alex asked and held her friend close

"Sure" Olivia wanted to know what was going on but would wait for morning, she wouldn't let Alex procrastinate from there though. "Let's get you back to bed" she offered then grimaced as Alex gripped her tight and looked at her with frightened eyes.

"Stay with me?" she asked and Olivia sighed "Please Liv, I feel safe with you" she begged and Olivia couldn't say no. Maybe this was why Alex looked so awful. It appeared she wasn't sleeping which seemed to be affecting her greatly.

"Ok, c'mon, I'll sleep the side closest to the door and I have my gun, you're safe" she told Alex and standing helped the younger woman up and to the bed where Alex crawled across to her side and Olivia slid in next to her.

Alex lay on her side, facing away from Olivia, stiff as a board. Olivia rolled her eyes knowing neither one of them would get any sleep if Alex didn't relax. Rolling onto her side she pressed in close behind Alex, wrapping an arm around her stomach and 'spooning' her. She once again whispered to her telling her she was safe, that she'd protect her until she felt Alex starting to relax. Only then did she close her own eyes and let sleep take hold.