"Are you out of your mind?"

Casey jumped high out of her seat, nearly dropping her fork. Looking up from the chicken salad in front of her, her eyes met those of none other than Olivia Benson, whose arms were folded tightly across her chest. "Excuse me?" she asked, one eyebrow arched in pure confusion.

Olivia rolled her eyes. "You heard me, Casey. Don't play dumb with me."

"You barge in here while I'm trying to get some food in my system for the first time today, demanding to know if I'm nuts, and you expect me to automatically know what the hell you're talking about." Casey sighed and closed her salad, pushing it away from her. She had suddenly lost her appetite. "I'm waiting for a fig to drop any time now," she added, not caring if Olivia caught her allusion or not.

"OH, okay. So this is the part where you play cute and deny that you did anything wrong, right? As if I don't have the common sense to realize it was you who did it."

Casey stood up from her desk, feeling her anger begin to course within her veins. "Detective, if you're going to accuse me of something, DO IT. These damn mind games are REALLY beginning to drive me out of my mind! I don't have the slightest idea what you are ranting about, and unless you have an accusation to make, the door is right behind you."

Olivia sat down and adjusted herself comfortably in one of the chairs in front of Casey's desk, further infuriating the young attorney. The two women locked eyes, glaring at each other like dogs before a major fight. Neither spoke or moved, until, finally, Olivia broke the silence. "You offered Leon Garcia a deal. Have you completely lost it? He's a rapist, Casey! He brutally raped four little girls and you have the nerve to offer him a deal?"

Casey had to walk to the other side of the room in an effort to control her anger from bubbling over the edge. "My mind is fine, Benson," she managed calmly, her emerald eyes narrowed in pure anger. "Thank you for being so considerate and looking after it though," the redhead couldn't help but add. "Yes, I offered Garcia a deal, because it was the only way to get him to flip on his other gang members. We got all of the other six thanks to him. Oh, and for the record, I offered him four consecutive counts of rape two. He'll be too old to rape when he gets out. Are you done deciding how I run my cases or is there something else you'd like to bitch about?"

"You are out of line, young lady," Olivia responded coldly, standing up from her chair. Casey watched it fall backwards and flinched at the crashing sound it made. Inching closer to the ADA, who instinctively pressed herself against the wall, Olivia continued her scolding. "In case you've forgotten, it's my job to hand you the cases and yours to put the perps in jail."

Olivia's anger was extremely prominent, but Casey, normally afraid of her in this state, somehow managed to find the courage to stand up for herself. "And in case you've forgotten, once cases get to the arraignment stage, they are in MY care, under MY control. You detectives have no say over what I do in the courtroom, and what deals I cut with whom are between me, my boss, and the judge." Lately the two had been fighting like this several times a week, and Casey did not understand it at all, but she figured it would blow over soon. She hoped so, anyway.

The detective just shook her head in disbelief. "This conversation is over," she stated firmly. Picking up the chair she had knocked over, Olivia buttoned her coat. Casey knew she had won. And yet, as the detective stormed out, she couldn't decide if she was more grateful or more tempted to apologize. But what did she have to apologize for? She was about to hold a trial for a gang of kiddie rapists in less than two weeks, and the appreciation she got was being chewed out. She was not going to apologize for doing her job! Her mind a jumble of confusion, Casey sighed and put the salad on the top shelf of the small refrigerator in her office, just as the phone on the desk rang. "Casey Novak," she answered after picking up.