Title: Shimmer of Hope

Authors: IllStandByYou87 and yokascruz

Author's Note: So I was just going through my word documents and I found this story me and yokascruz, aka Mandi wrote about 5 years ago. I hope you like!

Why do sometimes you have nights with no sleep?

And memories. Alotta memories.

And emotions.

Every emotion out there.





I thought about this as I entered the precinct.

Supposed to be my safe haven right?

My home away from home.


I walked in there and I felt everyone looking at me.


Not everyone.



I had on about 3 layers.

We all know there's only one thing on their minds.


Even if they deny it.

Even if they say I swear I thought I had spare change in my pocket.

That's all they're thinking about.

I kept walking in and was about to go up the stairs when I heard one asshole say,"Damn, what I would do to her if I had her alone for 10 minutes." I felt the tears start welling up.

I felt my fingers start to curl into fists.

I felt the warning signs of a breakdown coming on.

Of course I tried to ignore it.

Keep my head held high.

But then the asshole's partner whistled.

I felt his partner staring at me, he whispered, "What a sweet piece of ass."

That did it.

Right there.

I couldn't hold back the tears.

I let a couple slide down my cheek.

I ran outta the precinct. I got outside and looked around blindly.

The tears blurred everything up.

I remembered the alley.

Desperate, I ran in the alley.

I settled myself behind a dumpster where no one would find me.

I started to cry.

Full force.

I held my knees to my chest and let loose.

Trying to make myself seem as small and as invisible as humanly possible.

What the fuck's been up with me lately? I can't seem to hold it together. The littlest things make me burst into tears. I can't walk into my own goddamn House without letting those assholes make me want to run and hide like this. Sometimes I wish that son of a bitch would've killed me. After he fucked me up like this, why not just go all the way? End my misery. End this shit hole I call my life. They won't stop. The tears keep coming. Every bad thing in my life hits me all at once.

How easy is it to just eat my gun? I've considered it. Many times. Too many. But hell will freeze over before I let that son of a bitch win. I pull out my gun anyway. Even if I won't go through with it. I like holding it in my hand. I like looking at it. Contemplating. Imagining. Just for a moment that the pain would be gone in a mere blink of the eye. That's when I hear her voice. Soft. Barely audible. I look up into her eyes. Hazel with a mixture of green. Full of concern. Are you fuckin kidding me? The last thing I need is this woman's pity. "Cruz?"

I lift my hand to silence her as I gain my feet. I don't need this right now. "Leave me the hell alone, Yokas," I hiss as I push pass her. I feel her hold on my jacket and I pull away roughly, "you didn't see me, okay?" I watch her nod slowly and lower her gaze. It's as if she's ashamed. Of what I don't know. But I see the sadness on her face and I hate that she's pretending to care.

She doesn't give a damn about me. Never has. Never will. Who the hell am I kidding? No one ever has. I'm alone. As I started to walk away my body can't take it. I just let it go again. My knees give way and I fell to the snow. I try to keep it in, but it's no use. I sit there, the icy snow numbing my fingers as I watch the tears fall to the ground in front of me.

Great. Just what I need. To see Yokas see me fall apart. As I see my last shred of pride fly away, I feel her crouch down next to me. "Cruz?" she says softly. I don't answer her. "Cruz?" she repeats. Obviously she wasn't gonna go away. I'm sorry Yokas, I'm in the middle of a nervous breakdown, I can't talk right now. I don't want her here. She's the last person I want here.

"Go away," I mumbled. "You alright?" she asked, ignoring my demand.

I just want her the hell away from me. Is that too much to ask? Do I look alright? Do alright people collapse in the snow crying?

"Like you care" She lets out a tired laugh as she stands, "you're right I don't," she replies and I'm about to let out a sigh of relief but I feel her hand firmly grip the back of my jacket and in one swift motion she pulls me to my feet. I'm amazed. Did she just do that? I look down and see my feet. Okay maybe she did. She probably just kept my ass from being frozen off.

I look at her, confused. "You mind? I was enjoying myself." "Yeah. I could tell," she snickers with a small grin on her face. She mocking me now? When did this happen? And why do I feel like a child about to be yelled at?

I stared at her, "why are you still here? I just wanna be left alone." She simply nods again. What the fuck do I have to do to get rid of this woman? "So can you leave me alone?"

Maybe what she wants is to see me break again. Maybe she wants to hear about how great it is to be a survivor of rape. Survivor? My ass. I've been surviving nothing. Just trying to live with what's left of my pathetic life.

Her hand comes up to rub the side of her face. I've seen that gesture before. She's thinking. I'm not the most patient person. I hate standing here, waiting for her to give me a goddamn answer.

After a few moments, she finally meets my eyes, "it's funny. I wanna leave right now, but.. I can't."

I roll my eyes. Here we go again. Saint Faith, trying to make the world a better place. "It ain't that hard. Just move your legs." I muttered the next part. "I don't need anyone."

Maybe I do need someone but my whole life I've been pushing people away. I got it set in my head that I don't need anybody. I've never had the option of having anyone to bitch to. To dump my shit on. To vent to. To cry to. No one ever seemed to give a damn about me so why should I give a damn about them? Although Faith Yokas is the last person on the planet I wanna spill my shit to, maybe it's what I need. To just get everything out.

She stands there, I swear I can hear her toe tapping on the ground with impatience. I try a few times to get the words out, but they don't come. What the fuck is up? Get your head together Maritza. She shrugs, "forget it then."

She starts to walk away and I can't help my hand that reaches out to grab her jacket. What the hell did I just do? I stare at my hand, wanting to let go, wanting to go back to my little hole.

My brain doesn't get the message though and I keep holding on. My grip getting tighter and I feel like if I let go I'll die. She's the last hope I have right now. Imagine that. My once worst enemy. Now, my lifeline.

She's looking back at me now. Probably. I wouldn't know. My eyes are still glued to my hand on her jacket. Her expression is probably just as confused as mine but she doesn't pull away. She actually turns back to face me and that's when I let go, lowering my gaze.

Unable to keep it in any longer. I took a deep breath. It's now or never, Maritza. "I was raped 14 months ago..." I start, but stop myself as I look at Yokas for some kinda reaction. I get none. Her face is unreadable, but in her eyes, I see her soften. I look away as I continue..."I'm still not over it. I keep blaming myself...You know all those counselors…they tell you that it's not your fault…you have nothing to be ashamed of. That's complete bull," I say harshly. Goddamn doctors, they don't know what the fuck it is like to be me. To experience what I have, the rape, now my illness. They don't know squat. I feel my fingers curl into fists but I push my anger aside." I feel like I'm drowning. The shame, humiliation. The regret. It's still there. Every goddamn day of my goddamn life. Whenever I see guys look at me…whenever I see them lick their lips, wink their eye, or stare at my fuckin chest. When I see them put their hands in their pockets, every time I see them stare at me and then go off in his mind. I feel dirty. I need a shower. We all know what they're thinking about. I just wanna spend the whole day in the shower, washing away all those feelings. I haven't let a guy touch me since. Sex? Forget about it. Ain't never gonna happen."

I'm rambling on and I don't care. I don't care anymore if it's Yokas I'm breaking down to, I don't care because these things need to come out. They've been long overdue.

"These fucking nightmares," I gasp, feeling the tears stinging my eyes, "almost every night. That asshole's face in mine, shoving himself harder and harder into me." The tears start falling now. Fast and silent. I don't give a damn. I am too far gone to stop now.

"He punched me in my stomach, ya know?" I let out a painful laugh through my tears, "pathetic eh? One hit in my stomach and I went down. That's how weak I really am, Yokas"

I hear her start to mumble something but I cut her off, "and now…now, I have this disease that's gonna wind up killing me. All the shit that I did and this is what's gonna kill me? I can't deal with all of this bullshit. My whole fucking life is spinning outta control and what am I doing about it? Bitching and venting to the woman who probably hates me more than anybody else in her life."

I don't know when it had happened, but I was now sunk down in the snow again; my back firmly against the brick building behind me. My tears continue, but I feared to look up. To look back at Yokas. I didn't wanna see a look of triumphed on her face. I didn't wanna see her smiling down at pathetic ole me. Knowing I'm the broken one, not her. After saying the shit I just did, I just wanted to be left alone. To curl up in a ball and die somewhere.

"Go ahead," I whisper, wiping weakly at my tears, "tell me I'm pathetic. Tell me I deserve the shit that happens to me. Go ahead, Yokas. Have your fun at my expense."

I fight the trembling of my body as wait for her to respond. Say something. Do something. Not just stand there watching me cry my damn eyes out. The next thing I know though, she's kneeling next to me. I feel her hand on my shoulder and I push my insecurities aside to finally meet her eyes. What I see in them leaves me breathless. I don't see triumph. I don't see satisfaction.

All I see is an indescribable sadness that I now know, is for me. There are goddamn tears in her eyes. Never would I have ever thought this woman would shed a tear for me. But she does. A single one, falling slowly down her cheek. I'm too shocked at what I see before me that I don't realize my tears have stopped til I feel her hand resting lightly on my forearm.

I know now, that there are two sides of Faith Yokas. One is this hard ass, overprotective, I-don't-take-shit-from-anybody, holier than thou cop and the other. Well, the other side of her is this sensitive woman who doesn't know any better than to comfort those around her. Even if she hates them, she sympathizes, empathizes. And that is what makes her a good person.

"Whatever happens next, Cruz," she utters softly, her eyes never leaving mine "I want you to know you're not alone anymore." She stands then, offering her hand to me and I gratefully accept as she once again pulls me to my feet. I can't describe how good it felt to just let all that out. I guess that counts as my breakdown for today. But right now, I'm thinkin' I ain't gonna have another one any time soon 'cause I don't need to hide anymore. I don't need to keep running away. I can face my demons. I can win. Together we head back toward the House. Yokas doesn't walk ahead. She doesn't shadow behind. She walks next to me, beside me. Like an equal.

While we walked I couldn't get over the irony of the whole thing. The one person that said I'm not alone anymore was my once sworn enemy.

I don't know what made me know that it was gonna be okay.

That I knew that I was gonna beat this.

I don't know what made me know I really wasn't gonna be alone anymore.

That she was really gonna be there for me. It wasn't just talk or something she said to get me to shut up.

I'll be too stubborn to call her up at 4 in the morning after having a nightmare, but just to know that I can, will make al hell of a lot of difference.

Of course I'll never admit it, but finally having someone else on my side felt good.

And she's right.

For whatever happens, good or bad, I won't be alone.

Not anymore.