Title: Just in Time

Author: Lisa

Email: lisacheerio_85@yahoo.com

Disclaimer: If there's any lawyers out there, reading these, who think they've got a case, I have six words for you, my darlings: You're a loser. Get a life. He. He. He. (I mean, as if you'd want to sue a schoolgirl?)

Author's Note: This is set as if Collette and Hollister never happened. Yay!

If the first few pages offend anyone, I am supremely sorry and I just want you to know that the content of discussions between Angie and Danni are not my personal opinion of the matter. I'm an open-minded gal, so please, don't take anything to heart!!!

Also, I know these characters end up in hospital every time, but where else are they gonna go?

Thanks: Everyone, really. Especially everyone who has written to me and said how much they enjoy reading my stories. It really lifts me, guys. Ta.

SMALL PARK IN THE CBD OF MELBOURNE

"That's disgusting!" Danni exclaimed, exiting the public showers. "I swear, after this I'm never going in one of those things again!" Angie broke into fits of laughter as Danni looked up, annoyed.

"I mean it Ang, this is the worst assignment I've ever been on. How can Mac send us undercover as homeless people? It's ridiculous!" Angie controlled herself.

"At least she sent us under together!" Danni looked up at her, brushing gunk off her jeans. "Yeah, I guess."

Danni and Angie went to sit on a nearby park bench. A young family was walking their dog and visibly moved away from the two "homeless drug addicts" as they passed. When they were enough of a distance away, Angie and Danni started laughing again.

"I must admit, this is horrible," Angie said. Danni just nodded. They had been undercover for a week now, living in a communal centre that cost no more than five cents a day. Their task was to keep an eye on a guy called Robbo. He was a suspect in two murders of young, blonde, homeless girls.

"Why did they send us in anyway?" Danni asked Angie. "I mean we're definitely not young girls. The two victims were no older than seventeen." Angie thought, brow creased. "Well, they can't send in teenagers, and I guess we're the closest to the profile." She paused. "I talked to Robbo's friend last night..." Danni turned, shocked.

"What did he say?" Greg Harris was Robbo's best mate, but denied any knowledge of the actions Robbo had been accused of.

"Nothing really. He did try to crack onto me..."

"Oh, my, God, Angie!" Danni tried not to laugh again. They weren't taking this case seriously, and they should be, but everything just seemed so damn funny.

"Angie," she continued. "He's gross!" Angie nodded.

"Don't worry. I implied, that I...well, you know...hang with the other crowd..." Danni looked at her, once again shocked.

"Angie, did you happen to imply that I was your...uh, partner?" Angie shook her head. "No, you're straight." Danni took all of this in, smiling. She pointed at Angie.

"I just...hah! I can't believe you told him you were..." She became serious. "I mean you are so not!!!" Angie shrugged. "Yeah, but it'll keep him off my back."

"Come on," Danni said, putting an arm around Ang. "Let's go back to our hell hole and try to get some sleep."

THE NEXT DAY

Angie and Danni walked down one of the main roads in the city. It was late afternoon. A car was slowly following them down the road. Angie and Danni didn't quicken their pace. In fact, they slowed down.

"So," Angie said, smiling. "How slow can you walk before you stop all together?" Danni grinned, casting a glance over her shoulder. "I don't know..."

"Hey, girls, move your buts and get into this car!" Ang and Danni turned, laughing at Oscar, who was leaning out the car window, frustrated. The two of them were having the time of their lives on this case, while Pete, Mac and himself were sweating in out doing actual work.

Danni and Angie walked over to the car. "How much you asking?" They said loudly. People walking past cast strange and dirty looks at them as they hopped into the backseat. One man, walking past, yelled at Oscar, "Bit greedy there, mate? Two at once!" Oscar pulled away from the curb angrily, as Ang and Danni broke into fits of laughter.

They were still laughing as they got out of the car at the factory. They stopped suddenly, eyeing each other as Pete and Mac emerged. Ang and Danni stood either side of the bonnet of the car, two hands laid evenly on the warm top.

"I've got it!" They yelled in unison, bolting for the shower. There was a struggle at the door, and amidst laughter, Angie burst through and slammed the door in Danni's face. "If you take more than ten minutes, I'll kill you!" Danni yelled through the door, only to be answered by the sound of running water.

She turned, walking back to where Oscar was informing Mac of their antics. Mac looked steadily at Danni, but it was hard to take her seriously, the mess she was in.

"Danni, do you actually have any information?" Danni paused, thinking. "Yeah, this morning, we talked to them. Robbo and Greg. Robbo said that he had seen a few younger girls around. Said there were a lot of them out there. And then," she paused, handing the tape of the conversation over to Mac. "Then he said that all they really needed was someone to take care of them. To really love them and look after them." Mac shook her head.

"Not enough, Danni..."

"Yeah, I know, but I think he wants to tell someone. What is it that he needs to say?" she asked. Mac went over the case in her head.

"He needs to say that he killed those girls..."

"You'll never get him to admit it, Mac-"

"He will if you get him angry enough. Make him feel small or something, so that he will boast about his 'accomplishments' to you. That should do it. Of course, if he hasn't already spilled the beans in his room, we haven't checked those tapes yet." Danni nodded as Angie emerged in warm, clean clothes. As Danni left for a shower, she said, "Oh, Ang, I forgot to tell you that I met this girl at the commune this morning." She walked over to Ang, whispering in her ear. "She thinks you're hot!" Danni started laughing. Angie slapped her on the arm.

"Danni, that's an insult to everyone who really is! I did it to cover my arse, so just go and have a shower and that's the end of it, okay?" Danni's brow creased.

"What? It's not like you know anyone who really is?" Angie turned back to Danni.

"Yeah, actually, my best friend before I joined this unit was. So, no more, okay?" Danni nodded, back peddling and making her way to the shower.

Angie turned back to Mac, Pete and Stone.

"Don't ask," she stated, looking at them carefully. They nodded, not wanting to upset Ang any further.

"Okay," Angie continued. "So we're going back tonight?" Mac nodded.

"I'm afraid so, Ang. I'm really sorry about all of this..."

"No, no, Mac. It's fine. It's actually pretty fun. A little gross," she said, smiling. "But everything's going pretty well." Mac nodded, a smile forming on her face as well.

THE NEXT MORNING

Danni and Angie sat alone on the park bench, waiting. Rob and Greg had taken them to a local fish and chip shop for an early lunch, and were now having a private talk some metres away.

Mac had rung Angie and Danni just before they had left. They had transcribed the tapes from Rob's room, and had come up with enough evidence to convict him of the murder. Apparently, Rob had confessed to Greg, who hadn't been very happy about things, and a fight had started. During the fight, Mac said that Rob revealed information that he could only have obtained if he had been present.

Angie looked over to where Rob and Greg were once again talking animatedly. Rob walked off, seething mad. Greg shook his head, coming back to Angie and Danni.

"What's going on?" Danni asked.

"Nothing. It's just that..."

"Go on, tell us," Angie urged. Both Angie and Danni were wired, and they needed to know whether or not Greg had been involved in the murders.

"It's just that Robbo, he murdered those girls. Did you hear about them?" Greg looked up, rage showing through his eyes. "I'm so f*****' angry at him!!" Danni cast a glance at Angie. This was a side of Greg they hadn't seen before.

BACK AT THE COMMUNE

"We're thinking of moving on," Angie explained to Greg and Rob.

"Why?" Rob asked.

"No reason, really. We're just bored here," Danni stated matter-of-factly. They swung around in their chairs as two uniformed officers and Hollister approached them.

"Robert Quinn?" they asked. Rob stood defensively.

"Mr Quinn. You are under arrest for the murder of Rebecca Adams and Elise Nugget. You have the right to remain silent..." As the officer continued, Greg stood in his friend's defence.

"You can't do this, mate! He didn't do anything!!" Angie looked up at the officers.

"Will you need us for questioning?" Hollister, knowing exactly who they were, answered. "No, I don't think so. We've got this one all wrapped up."

An hour later, Angie and Danni said goodbye to Greg. He was extremely mad, something inside him must have just cracked, Danni thought to herself. As she and Angie stood, Greg caught sight of a tape recorder tucked neatly inside Angie's jeans. He could only see the top half, but the record button was definitely pressed. Angie brought her jacket over her chest, blocking his view, and he looked at her, putting things together. Angie smiled at him.

"See 'ya, Greg," they both said cheerfully as they left the commune. Greg waited thirty seconds before following them.

THE FACTORY

"Poor Greg, though," Angie said. "He really had no part in it. Lost his best friend." Mac smiled slightly. Danni looked at her strangely.

"Ang, he was a fruitcake. Happy one minute, raging the next."

"And," Mac added. "Quinn's been saying the two of them have done assaults together. He'll be brought in for questioning as soon as possible."

"So," Pete asked, changing the subject. "What are you girls doing tonight?" Mac looked at him, smiling.

"I know what you're doing tonight, Mac," he replied, grinning.

"Oh, you do not!" Mac exclaimed, however a small smile remained on her lips.

Angie butted in. "Well I'm going to have a nice, long shower, and go to sleep in my nice, warm bed."

"Here, here!" Danni added cheerfully.

As Angie grabbed her bag to leave, Oscar walked up to her.

"Feel like some company tonight?" he asked. Angie looked up, smiling.

"Sure. How much are you asking?" Oscar smiled.

"I don't know. A bottle of wine. Dinner. Nothing Mac and Pete wouldn't do." Angie laughed.

"We're not going there, Stone." He laughed as well, slapping her on the shoulder. They didn't know for sure Mac and Pete did do anything, but they had their fun. "Yeah, definitely. I'll see you at eight?" She nodded, smiling to herself as Oscar walked away.

Greg kept driving as Marie, or whoever she really was, pulled into her driveway. He did a u-turn further up the street and parked across the road. He watched her turn on lights inside the house, completely unaware that he had been following her since she had left the commune.

He had followed her to some form of warehouse or shed. A hideout, he had thought to himself. He knew she and her friend were cops. It didn't take a genius to figure that one out. They had spied on Rob, on him, and then gone back to the station and given them all the information. Rob had tried to blackmail him. He had said that if the cops caught him, he would tell them everything they had done together, most of which had been Greg's idea. They were going to keep it quiet, and now these stupid bitches had made his plan impossible. He hadn't murdered the girls of course, hadn't even known, but there had been other attacks, incidents.

He felt the anger welling up inside of him. He checked the knife held securely in his jacket, smiling to himself. This was going to be fun. He had never done it to a pretty, blonde copper before.

Danni arrived home. She sat down and turned on the television. Slowly, she drifted off to sleep on the couch, not to wake up until the phone rang later that night.

Angie stood in the shower, letting the warm water fall over her. Marvellous, she thought. Finally, I'm home. She really hadn't enjoyed staying in the community centre as much as she had alleged. It had been dirty, crowded. Ang was just glad she didn't live like that every day. She closed her eyes, letting the water run over her face.

Greg opened the front door slowly. He could hear the shower running. Stuck up cow, he thought. Couldn't wait to get home and wash all our dirty germs off of her. She must be congratulating herself, Greg thought. She got a good result. Well, almost. He took out the knife, making his way down the hallway.

Oscar got back into his car, after purchasing two bottles of wine. He checked his watch. He would be early, but he didn't think Ang would mind. Or would she, he thought. Stone decided to sit in his car for ten, fifteen minutes, just to give her a little more time. She'll probably spend an hour scrubbing herself clean, he thought with a smile as he turned on his car radio.

Angie had her back to the shower curtain, so she didn't see the door open and Greg slip in. The room was filled with steam. Angie started to hum. She wondered how long until Oscar got there. He was usually early or unexpected. Ang had a sudden feeling of anticipation, which she hadn't felt in a long time. Stop it, she told herself. It's just a drink with Oscar, your friend, nothing more. Still, Angie was glad he was coming over. She couldn't wait.

Angie gasped as the curtain was drawn back and she was pushed forward, hitting the ceramic tiles of the shower wall. She reached up, searching for something to cling to, but the walls were slippery. She tumbled to the floor, water hitting her like tiny bullets. A knife was held to her neck as she gasped for air amongst the running water.

"Greg," she managed as he viciously rolled her onto her stomach. He placed a foot on her back as he turned off the water. She squirmed underneath him, but he only pressed harder, forcing her to cry out in pain.

Shit, Angie thought. No! She pushed herself off the bottom of the tiles, catching Greg off balance. She turned, grabbing her towel and making a run for the door. But Greg was too quick. He slammed into her back. Angie hit the wooden door to the bathroom with force. Greg pulled her back, holding the knife to her neck once again. He opened the door and pushed her through ahead of him.

Oscar drove slowly. He didn't want to seem too enthusiastic. He still didn't want something to happen while they were working together, but he didn't see the harm in planting the seeds. Anyway, he thought, Mac and Pete have probably been doing it for ages, and you wouldn't even know it. He smiled to himself as he pulled to a stop at a red light. He couldn't wait to see Angie's smile, he realised, his own spreading across his face like a disease.

Angie fell, hitting her head on the side of the bed. She put a hand to her forehead, feeling the gash. Greg was on top of her in a second. She tried to push him up and roll from underneath him, just like she had been taught at self-defence classes.

"My, my, you're feisty, aren't you?" He stood off her for only a moment, in order to shut her bedroom door. He turned back to her. Angie tried to stand, but was too weak. She was dripping wet, and still held onto her towel, retaining the little dignity she had left.

Greg moved forward, lying himself brutally on top of her.

She gasped as his fist knocked the wind out of her. He held the knife to her side as he ripped away the towel, taking in everything he saw with pleasure.

He watched excitedly as tears began rolling down her cheeks. Greg put a hand to her cheek. "There, there, my darling, don't cry." He stroked her repeatedly as she continued to struggle beneath him.

Oscar pulled into Angie's driveway. He whistled to himself as he got out of the car with his wine and headed towards the front door. He stopped as he saw the door was slightly ajar. That wasn't usual, especially not with Angie. He opened it slowly, listening. He made his way down the hallway. Oscar didn't call out her name. If something was wrong, he didn't want to be the one to cause a panic.

He passed Angie's bedroom without a second glance. Inside, no noise was been made. Greg still sat, absorbed in Angie's body. She cried quietly with her head turned, unable to do anything because of the knife held firmly beside her waist.

Oscar stopped when he saw the entrance to the bathroom. There was water all over the floor. He looked down at his feet, realising he hadn't been looking at the carpet. He turned, looking back down the hallway at the trail leading to Angie's bedroom.

Angie felt a sudden burst of anger; she rolled, pushing Greg off her, taking him by surprise. She managed to let out an angry yell before he regained his balance and threw all of his weight into her. She fell back, hard, against the floor. I give up, she thought. I can't keep going. I just can't. Angie tried not to cry again as Greg took up his position on top of her. Oh God, she thought, turning her head and squeezing her eyes shut.

Oscar put his ear to the door. He heard the scuffle inside. This is not good, he thought, racing back to find Angie's spare gun. He knew she had told him where it was. They had told each other where they kept their spares one day on a stakeout, when there had been nothing else to talk about.

Oscar tried to remember. He knew it was in the kitchen somewhere. He opened cupboards and checked tins and boxes as quietly as possible. Finally, he set eyes on Angie's small pistol. In the empty Whitmans box next to it, there were a small number of bullets. Oscar hurriedly loaded them, casting glances down the hallway every few seconds.

Angie kept her eyes closed as she felt Greg run a hand down her body. Jesus, she begged, get me out of this. Please.

Angie didn't see anything, didn't want to. She kept her eyes glued shut. But she heard the door swing open, hitting the wall behind it. And she heard the gun shot, the bullet passing so close to her she jumped a mile high. She opened her eyes as Greg slumped on top of her, his body becoming a dead weight on her chest. Blood dripped over her as she tried to push him off, panicking. A sharp pain started to stab at her side.

Oscar was beside her in a second. "Angie," he whispered repeatedly as he realised what he had just prevented.

He rolled Greg off her, reaching for the towel a couple of metres away. He handed it to her quickly as he helped her sit. She covered herself, ashamed.

Oscar sat in front of her, concerned. He put a hand to the cut on her forehead, which was still bleeding heavily.

"Oscar," Angie whispered urgently. He looked down at her hand, clasped around her middle. They locked eyes for only a few seconds, before Oscar gently moved her hand away. She was shaking terribly.

Down her waist and hips, there was at least a twenty centimetre cut where Greg's knife had slipped as he was shot. Angie looked away, breaking down. Oscar moved behind her, reaching for a phone as he held her in his arms. "It's okay. It's okay," he reassured her repeatedly as he called for the police and an ambulance. He hung up the phone, holding a hand tenderly over her the gash. She leant back into him, shaking and crying. Oscar could do nothing more but keep reassuring her that everything was going to be all right. Hopefully, he added to himself, choking back his own tears.

LATER THAT NIGHT - HOSPITAL

Pete and Mac ran up to Oscar, who was covered in blood.

"What's happened?" they asked him fearfully. Oscar held back tears.

"It's all right. Angie, she was attacked by...Greg Harris. When I got there he had surprised her in the shower. She was beaten really badly. He was..." Mac sat him down on the nearby chair as she listen, scared. Oscar continued. "...he was on top of her..."

"Oh God," Mac muttered.

"Nothing happened. But when I shot him, his knife slipped. She has this amazingly long cut down her side, guys; it was horrible. She was so scared, I..." Stone was interrupted as Danni ran up to them, followed by a less excitable doctor. He looked at Oscar, Angie's blood across his shirt.

"I take it you're Oscar Stone?" he asked. Stone nodded.

"Right, you can see her now. Your friend, Angie, is in a bit of a state. The physical injuries will heal. She has stiches down her side and on her forehead, and she has a slight concussion, but she'll be fine in a few days. The stiches come out in ten. I'm most worried about the psychological scars. She was almost raped..." Oscar nodded as the doctor left him outside Angie's room.

He entered slowly. She had her head turned, looking out the window at the city lights. She didn't turn as Oscar entered. He sat beside her.

"Angie," he started. She didn't respond. Oscar heard her sniffle. She was shaking. He put a hand on her shoulder.

"Just relax, Ang. You're okay now." She turned to look at him, tears sliding down her badly bruised cheeks. There was so much she wanted to say; only she just couldn't make herself stop crying. She reached out to him as best she could without straining herself. "Oscar," she choked as he leant forward to hug her. She held onto him tightly as she relaxed, letting the tears fall from her eyes onto his shoulder. As they broke away, she put a hand to his shirt, soiled with her blood. Tears welled up in her eyes again as she looked away.

Oscar reached across the bed, taking her far cheek in his hand. She closed her eyes as she felt the warmth and security in his touch. He turned her face slowly to meet his. "Do you want me to stay here with you tonight?" he asked. She nodded as he brushed hair from the stiches on her forehead.

"Oh God, Angie," Oscar started. "You don't know how glad I am that you're all right. I...thought I'd lost you when I saw the cut. I..." She reached up, putting a finger to hips lips. Oscar took her hand in his, holding it as he kissed it gently.

"Thankyou," Angie whispered. Oscar looked into her eyes as he gently placed her hand back on the sheets. He put a hand to her face, moving it slowly down her jaw line to her neck and back again. It was the same action Greg had used, but this time it sent different kinds of shivers down Angie's spine. As Oscar's fingers traced her chin and mouth, she kissed them gently. Oscar held them there as Angie whispered once again, "Thankyou."

Oscar was tender. He leant over slowly, so as not to threaten Angie. He looked straight into her beautiful blue eyes, making sure this is what she wanted. It was, he saw, in the tears that now rolled down her cheeks again. Oscar brushed them away gently as their lips met for a brief moment. He pulled away slowly as Angie smiled.

"Angie," Oscar said quietly. "I don't want this to start because you think I feel sorry for you."

"And I don't want this to start because you feel sorry for me," she replied. "Do you?" Oscar smiled.

"Yes and no. Ang, I've wanted this to happen a while now..."

"But we're still working together," she choked through tears.

"I don't care anymore," Oscar said affectionately. He leant in to kiss her again. This time, Angie reached up and pulled him close to her. Stone was careful, only lightly brushing places along Angie's bruised body. She shivered with pleasure beneath him as he moved to be closer to her. He took her head in both his hands and kissed her with more passion than he had ever kissed anyone before. Behind them, the door opened quietly. Mac, Danni and Pete looked in for only a second, shutting the door quickly, smiling. Angie and Oscar were completely absorbed in each other. They broke away eventually. Angie moved over so that Oscar could be next to her. He kept his arm around her, gently running a hand down Angie's face as she closed her eyes, falling into a sleep full of wonderful dreams. He smiled as he watched her sleep, pulling her close to him for a final kiss goodnight.

"Love you, Ang," he said quietly to her, holding her near.

"Love you, too..." she replied, almost fully asleep. She put her arm over his chest as Oscar felt her relax. He too, closed his eyes, falling into a deep sleep, comfortable and secure in their tender embrace.