Hello, everyone! The purpose of this story is a bit cheeky really.
I have a request to make...
I'd like some stories!
This is why: In August, I'll be flying to Chicago for a week. Which will be a fantastic trip. Only problem is, it's an 8 hour flight to Chicago from England and I have a fear of flying. And when I say 'fear of flying' what I actually mean is that even driving past Newquay Airport brings me out in a cold sweat of terror.
So... to distract myself from a major panic meltdown while in mid-flight, I'd like some stories to read; specifically, stories featuring my two favourite characters of all time – Mac and Stella.
If you've read my stories, you'll know that I love romance, drama, danger and humour. Stories with any or all of those elements would be super amazing! I also adore AU stories.
I fly on the 23rd August, so if anyone would like to write me a Mac/Stella story of any length (although the longer the better as I read very fast!) please let me know. If you could post them or send them to me by the 22nd August, that would be brilliant. I can then read them on the flight.
In return, I'm offering to write requests on the flight back –Mac/Stella (of course) DL, Flack/Angell or any general team fics.
I've also written a little something below, which I hope is entertaining. I've always wanted to indulge myself with a Mary-Sue style story (which is not to be taken seriously :D) so here is the result!
"Are you sure, Flack?" Ross says doubtfully. "I mean, she doesn't look dangerous..."
I snort. "Yeah, and neither did Lizzie Borden."
He looks puzzled as he glances through the two-way mirror. "But you haven't arrested her for axe murdering anyone."
Rolling my eyes, I speak real slow, just to make sure he understands. "You're missing the point. The point is not about axe murdering... although judging by her previous, I wouldn't put it past her."
"Uh, then what is your point?" he asks.
I exhale. "My point is that looks are misleading, okay? Appearances are deceptive; never judge a book by its cover; don't...
"I get your point."
"... let an innocent face fool you." I ignore the interruption. "Our suspect may appear – I repeat, appear non-threatening and unlikely to commit the long list of crimes we're going to charge her with, but do not let that fool you."
Taking another look into the interrogation room, I curl my lip at the sight of our suspect sitting there as if butter wouldn't melt: young woman, probably late 20s, chin propped on her hands, cross-legged on the chair with her feet tucked under her dress.
One of the most dangerous people I've ever encountered.
"You really think she's responsible for what happened to the boss and Stella?" Ross pipes up, still sounding doubtful.
"I don't think, I know. And I'm wasting valuable time discussing this with you. Here," I thrust the pile of evidence we got against Little Miss I'm So Sweet And Innocent And British, "you don't believe me, take a look at this."
Marching past him and out towards the interrogation room, I spin round on my heel. "Read some of that, then tell me she ain't dangerous."
"I'm reading it now," he says, skimming down the page. Then his face turns towards me. "Oh..." his skin's gone a weird sort of chalky colour and his eyes bulge.
"Yeah, 'oh'." I laugh humourlessly. "Now you see what we're up against. Do what you can with the USB stick we found on her while I do my thing here."
Ross nods and gulps, and satisfied I've made my point; at last, I stride into the room.
"Hello, Mr Flack." Little Miss Innocent beams. "Or may I call you Don?"
"No. You may not. It's Detective Flack to you," I snarl, and she nods, lips pursed, coming over all serious.
"Oh of course, Detective. My apologies. What can I do for you?"
Getting the feeling I'm being mocked, I slap down the wad of paper on the table in front of her – all the evidence we got against her so far following the anonymous tip-off – and it warms me inside when it makes her jump.
"Gosh, that's an awful lot of paper, Mr Flack," she says looking at me all wide eyed. "Have you written that?"
The warm feeling disappears. "Detective Flack. And you know darn well who's written it and it ain't me. This-this sick and twisted and downright dangerous stuff has got nothing to do with me. Geez..." I shake my head, "poisonings, stabbings, shootings, people being hit over the head – several times – car accidents... I mean, what kind of a mind comes up with all that?"
Her eyebrows have risen. "Sounds like a rather imaginative mind to me..."
Taking in a deep breath and releasing it as a growl, I shove the papers closer to her. She turns her eyes down to them, lifting up one or two pages and scanning them rapidly, before she looks back at me, concern plastered all over her face. "Oh dear, this is all rather unfortunate..."
"Unfortunate?" I splutter. "Unfortunate? We got a dossier here describing the most heinous crimes perpetrated against two of the NYPD's finest, if not the finest detectives, and all you can say is that it's unfortunate?"
I walk away from her for a moment, stride over to the mirror, rub my hands over my face before turning back to her with a glare. "Believe me, this is going to turn out to be more than unfortunate for you."
At least she's got the sense to look uncomfortable at that.
"If you'll allow me to explain..." she starts.
"So start explaining," I stride back over to her. "And fast. Because I ain't a patient man, especially when two very good friends of mine are in trouble and I got solid evidence and eye witnesses linking you to their disappearance."
By now, I'm leaning forward across the table, palms down, trying to keep a lid on my frustration. Hoping in the meantime that Ross is going to find something solid on her flashdrive. God knows what Mac and Stell are facing right now, wherever they are, given our suspect's past.
"I'm still waiting for you to start explaining," I remind Little Miss Innocent, giving her my best intimidating suspects glare. She don't even blink.
"Do you know," she says, propping her chin on her palms and staring at me. "You have very pretty eyes."
"My eyes ain't important." Trying to rattle her, I move behind her. "So where are they, huh?" I demand. "We've played games long enough."
She twists round to face me, smoothes her dress and smiles sweetly. "Where are who?"
I slap my hand on the table, which hurts, but I don't let it show. "You know darn well who I mean, Miss Moonlight," I snarl. "If that really is your name of course."
Ha. That ought to shake her up a bit.
All she does is smile. Again. Which is really starting to bug me...
"Well, it's not exactly my real name," she says with a deprecating laugh. Then, tipping her head on one side, she grins – yes grins – at me. "You could call me Mary-Sue if you prefer. But I'm sure you can find out what my real name is."
"You can bet on it," I snarl.
"I wouldn't dream of betting against you, Detective Don." She smiles brightly. "With all that hi-tech technology... stuff... I'm sure it won't take you and the CSIs any time at all to uncover my real identity, probably using imaging and EFIS..."
"AFIS." It snaps out of me automatically.
"Of course, AFIS, thank you." Nodding sagely, she pulls out a small notebook and pen from a pocket and jots something down. In the worst handwriting I've ever seen. "So I don't forget another time," she explains.
"Well I got news for you: there ain't going to be a next time." Reaching over, I snatch the notebook out of her hands and she looks like a kid who's just had her candy stolen. Not that I'd go around stealing kids' candy of course...
"Oh must you?" She's all plaintive and pitiful. "I'm rather fond of that notebook and it's got an awful lot of useful information in there."
"Yeah, I just bet it has," I sneer tucking the notebook safely out of her reach. "Well, you can suck it up. I'm confiscating this, filled as it likely is with plots, the best ways of abducting someone, different ways to render people unconscious..."
It unnerves me when she shrugs. "That and other useful little tid bits, such as flowers I've seen – poisonous and non-poisonous – stories about kittens..."
"Kittens?" I snort. "Flowers? Sure, and I'm the King of England."
"We have a queen, actually." She leans back in her chair and starts fiddling with the bangles on her wrist.
"I was talking allegorically," I say through gritted teeth.
"Or metaphorically." She beams and leans forward. "You've studied literature and language?"
I take a very deep breath. "No, I have not. High school diploma was good enough for me. And if studying literature was what helped you produce all this..." I flick the top few pages of evidence, "then I am personally going to ask for an amendment to be passed banning the studies of literature."
"Indeed." She smiles and I got no doubt whatsoever she's taking me about as seriously as a box of monkeys. It's unnerving me, too, the stare she's giving me. Feels almost like - if I ain't sounding too paranoid - that she's staring right through my clothes to my bare skin underneath. So I cross my arms in front of me.
"Stop staring at me," I snap.
Another smirk. "I'm only looking."
"Yeah, well stop looking."
A secretive smile appears on her face. "It's a nice view."
"Enjoy it while you can," I growl. Trying to move out of her line of vision ain't easy as she keeps turning round to look at me. And it's not long before a trail of perspiration slides down my neck and back.
"Warm in here, isn't it?" Shifting round in her seat again, she grins at me in a way that reminds me of a cat about to leap on its prey. "I'm very warm."
Proving her point, she takes off her cardigan and drapes it over the back of her chair.
"Make yourself at home, why don't you." I sneer and she beams again.
"Thank you, I will. Actually, a cup of tea would be really nice right now as I'm quite thirsty..."
"I was being... geez... didn't they teach you sarcasm as well as plotting on your fancy literature course?" I demand, wrapping my hands round the edges of the table so they don't 'accidentally' wrap themselves round her neck...
"You know," she says conversationally, "if you're... hot, you could always take your jacket off." She gives me an oh so innocent blink of her eyes. "Or your shirt." Her eyelashes flutter and her smile turns coy. "I wouldn't mind."
I swallow my wrath with difficulty. "I'm removing nothing. You've had your fun, now tell me what you've done with Mac and Stella and if you co-operate, maybe you'll be out of Sing-Sing before that brown hair of yours turns grey..."
"Please," she scoffs, touching said hair with a self-conscious pat. "Brown is so ordinary. I'd describe it as auburn, or maybe chestnut..." She pauses, zoning out for a moment. "Yes, chestnut, with maybe just a hint of chocolate, or glints of autumn sunlight in it, which match beautifully with my storm-grey eyes..."She stops, blinks, and shakes herself. "I'm awfully sorry, I don't know what came over me then..."
The last of my patience disappears in a puff of smoke. "I ain't interested. Just tell me where they are. You got ten seconds to start talking."
A stubborn look comes over her face. "Only if you give me my notebook."
"Your notebook is evidence. No deal."
"Fine." She shrugs. "No notebook, no talking." She starts examining her nails. "I guess you might find them without me. Some day. Maybe..." Sliding a sideways glance at me, a dangerous smirk appears on her face. "Probably when it's too late and all that's left of them will be a little heap of bones, two guns and two badges; their skeletons lying side by side, united in..."
The notebook hits the table. "There. Take your damn notebook. Now talk."
My voice is hoarse and I got sweat dripping all down me now. But I don't care. She can stare all she wants. I ain't going to let that happen to Mac and Stella. Never.
Smiling like a cat who's just gotten a whole cage full of canaries, Little Miss Literary grabs the notebook and slips it back into her pocket.
"Okay. I'll talk."
Less than an hour later, the squad car I'm driving screeches round a corner with our perp in the back and Hawkes riding shotgun. We got back-up and an ambulance on standby, just in case. It's impossible to stop myself glancing in the rear view mirror every few minutes, keeping an eye on the back seat passenger, making sure she hasn't pulled any tricks. But she's sitting quiet enough; gazing out of the window looking like she's enjoying the view. Then she starts asking question about the places we pass and the Doc takes pity on her and points out a few landmarks.
"You're not a tour guide, Hawkes," I hiss under my breath. "Stop talking to her. She'll find some way of messing with your head, or try to get you to take your shirt off."
Glancing back at our passenger, the Doc looks surprised. "I got to say, Flack, I'm wondering if you've really got the right person here She looks harmless."
The only reason I'm able to resist banging my head on the steering wheel is because I'm currently trying to overtake a fourteen wheeler.
"Just read the evidence." It aint easy to speak through gritted teeth but I manage it. "It's in the glove compartment."
Giving me a strange look, he opens the glove compartment and takes out the stack of papers, and a candy bar I was saving for later drops out, too. Luckily, I manage to grab it before he sees it and stash it in my pocket. Still looking sceptical, he starts skimming through the pages. Glancing at him, it's with a grim satisfaction that I see his eyes getting wider and wider the more he reads, and his jaw dropping lower and lower. Finally, he puts the papers down with shaking hands.
"See what I mean?" I mutter, casting another sideways glance at him.
"Wow," he says weakly. "That is..."
"Dangerous? Perilous? Criminally insane?"
There's a weird glow in his eyes as he turns to me. "Exciting..." he breathes. But while I'm gaping like a stranded fish, he suddenly turns crestfallen. "Why does none of this sort of stuff ever happen to me?"
I shake my head in disgust.
"Oh, Mr Don?" Little Miss Innocent calls from the back seat, making me grind my teeth together. If I get cavities after all this, I'm billing the department...
"I think we're almost there. Take the next road on the right... no, left... hang on, right. Yes, right. Sorry." She giggles. "It's a terrible fault of mine. I never seem to be able to get my left and right... er, right."
"Doesn't seem to have stopped you directing people towards all kinds of danger and damage..." I mutter, noting with interest the queasy look Hawkes gets on his face after I swing the car round in the road with a screech of tires and speed down the side street I've been directed to.
"I think we're about five minutes away," Little Miss Direction says thoughtfully, "depending on how fast you drive of course."
Fast, huh? Okay, she wants fast, she gets fast. And the faster we get to Mac and Stell the better. Gives me a great sense of satisfaction to hear the engine scream as I stamp on the gas and we shoot forward...
"Apologies, Doc," I say, realising he really does look kind of sick.
"It's... okay..." he gasps.
Glancing into the rear view mirror again, I'm happy to see Little Miss Speedy looking huge-eyed and clinging to the door handle. Ha. A taste of her own medicine at last. Smiling grimly, I keep driving.
"Next... left," she pipes up a few minutes later.
I turn right.
Sure enough, we're in sight of a whole stretch of warehouses.
"Stop here," Little Miss Bossy instructs and I hit the brake, making another apology to the Doc as he rebounds against the seat.
"You okay?" I ask, hoping he is, seeing as it's more than likely we're going to need him when we find Mac and Stella.
"Give... give me a minute," he croaks. "I'll-I'll catch you up."
"Whatever." Leaving him taking deep breaths, I haul our perp out of the back of the car, making sure the cuffs on her are still secure. "Lead the way," I order, "and remember, I'm armed."
"So I see." She smirks. "It really is a gun in your pocket." And has the cheek to wink at me. I ignore it and retain my dignity. It's nothing I've never heard before.
"Just keep moving and don't try anything funny," I grunt and the girl's got the gall to look hurt.
"I'm a very serious person, Mr Don," she says. "Really, I take things very seriously."
"Detective," I say automatically as we're headed towards a particularly decrepit looking warehouse. "And I just bet you do." Prodding her forwards, I continue, "But not as seriously as I'm taking the abduction and captivity of two of my fellow detectives."
"It was for their own good," she mumbles.
That makes me snort. "If that's your idea of doing good, I'd hate to see you doing bad."
"You'll see." She lifts her shoulders. "It's difficult to explain. Not everyone gets it..."
"Just keep walking."
"Whatever," she grumbles.
"And stop using my words."
Moments later, we stop in front of the warehouse.
"This the one?" I ask.
She nods, looking sulky.
"Okay, so show me the way in." Having to shade my eyes and squint in the sun, after forgetting my sunglasses ain't improving my mood. Neither is no visible sign of a door.
After a moment, I'm aware I'm still waiting. "The door?"
That real irritating smile appears on her face again and she holds her cuffed wrists out towards me.
"Oh no. No way." I glare at her. "There is no way those are coming off. Either show me the way in or-or else."
"Or else what?" she demands flippantly. "There isn't really a lot you can do or threaten me with, is there? Anyhow, all I'm asking for is a straightforward exchange. You take the cuffs off, I show you the way in." She lifts her shoulders and grins. "Seems simple enough to me, Mr Don." With a sigh, she gives me another of those sideways glances and then turns her eyes towards the warehouse. "It's going to be awfully hot in there now, you know. Suffocatingly hot even..."
In the silence that follows, Hawkes comes hurrying towards us and stops, looking between us.
"There a problem?" he asks.
"Yeah, there's a problem," I grate. "Little Miss Unhelpful here is trying to emotionally blackmail me."
Rapidly, I explain to the Doc and he looks thoughtful. "I guess it's not an unreasonable request," he says.
I snort again.
"You'll hurt your sinuses if you keep..." Someone starts to say and stops when my glare hits them full in the face. "Just saying." She holds up her still-cuffed hands and I'm just in time to catch the tail-end of the smirk Hawkes has wiped off his face.
How the heck did the day turn out like this? It's fast becoming one of the worst days of my life. I'd barely eaten breakfast before I got the call Mac and Stell had been abducted, in broad daylight, right in front of a whole street full of pedestrians. Yep; one of the worst days of my life...
But not the worst.
That was the day when the sun seemed to disappear out of the sky, when everything was taken from me. The day when Jess... when Jess...
"You okay, Don?" Snapping back to reality, I do my best to get rid of the concerned look on the Doc's face.
"Yeah," I say shortly. "Peachy." And having made my decision, I glare at Little Miss I'll Make A Deal and take a key out of my pocket. I'm not going to risk losing either Mac or Stell to the plot of some crazed criminalist with an unhealthy grudge against two of my best friends.
"You can do the honours," I tell Hawkes, handing the key to him.
The smug smile said crazed criminalist gives me once the cuffs are off makes me growl, but it don't have no effect on her. Beckoning us to follow, she sets off round the corner of the warehouse.
"Here." She waves a hand at the corrugated metal wall.
"Right here." After looking hopefully between us and getting nothing but shrugs, she rolls her eyes and fishes down the front of her dress, bringing out a key with a triumphant flourish.
It's my turn to roll my eyes.
"Just get on with it."
Muttering, she fits the key into an almost invisible hole in the wall and after a bit of twisting and turning something clicks.
"Ah ha!" She steps back, gesturing to the key. "You and Mr Hawkes had better do the rest," she says. "It's too heavy for me, being only petite." She beams.
"Stand aside." I sweep past her and Hawkes and start tugging at the miniscule gap that's been revealed. With Little Miss Tiny watching with a suspiciously interested look while me and the Doc strain our muscles, the door opens in a matter of seconds.
A grey sort of light, warm air and a musty smell flood out soon as it squeals open and we flatten ourselves back against the wall, weapons drawn, very aware this could be a trap.
So far as we can tell, nothing's moving in there and we take a few cautious steps inside. There isn't a whole lot in there; few boxes stacked up against the far wall; couple of broken plastic chairs; some rusted shelving. But there's no sign of either Mac or Stell.
Making our way further inside, we step over broken bits of glass on the floor and keep our eyes peeled for any sign of movement. The only likely place someone would be hiding, or hidden, is behind the big stack of boxes. So we make our way over. Still cautious, still watching every step, well aware that Little Miss Kidnapper is right behind us.
From behind the boxes, when we're only a few yards away, there's a faint sound of movement. We freeze.
Motioning to the Doc that I'll go first, I take a step forward, gun held out in front of me, and creep round to where there's a gap big enough to see through. The Doc's pressed up close behind me as I peer through and both of us exhale in relief when we see who's behind the boxes.
It's a relief that doesn't last long though when we see the state both of them are in.
Mac's slumped against the wall, just about got his eyes open, with his face white and waxy-looking. There's a gash across his forehead and blood on his shirt. Stella's sprawled on the ground beside him; no visible injuries, but she's clearly unconscious.
Me and the Doc kneel down next to them, ignoring Little Miss Dangerous for the time being, but if she even tries to run away, she's going to find Usain Bolt ain't got nothing on me.
"Bus is on its way, Mac," I say, cutting through the ropes he's got round his wrists and ankles, while the Doc sees to Stella. "Don't worry, we'll have both of you out of here in no time."
Looking groggy, he manages to nod. "'S'long as Stella's okay," he mumbles, reaching out to stroke her hair once his hands are free.
"Drugged but otherwise okay," Hawkes says, having checked her over. "Seems to be chloroform..."
At that, I turn and give our unwelcome companion a sour look. "Chloroform? Little unoriginal, don't you think?"
She blinks and raises her hands palm upwards. "Simple but effective."Then her face changes and she's the picture of concerned innocence. "I do hope they're both okay."
"You'd better hope so," I growl. "For your sake, because if they're not..."
Hands clasped together, she seems to take the threat I leave hanging in the air a little more seriously this time, so I leave her to stew and concentrate on helping Mac get to his feet.
"We were ambushed," he says, still sort of slurring and swaying. "Right outside a cafe, got hit on the head... don't remember much after that."
"Don't worry about it," I assure him. "We got the person responsible."
He stops and blinks and a cold, blank sort of look comes over his face. "Where are they?"
Little Miss Oh So Concerned takes a step back, looking genuinely worried for the first time since I laid eyes on her.
I grin. And it ain't a pleasant grin. "Right in front of you," I tell Mac and he turns a deadly gaze towards the girl.
She takes another step back.
"Her?" Mac asks, his voice turning hard. "She's the one responsible for this?" He glances down at Stell, still lying on the floor with her eyes shut.
"Yep." I nod. "You wouldn't think it to look at her, but she's our perp."
Mac squints. "Looks exactly the sort of person capable of kidnapping," he says, looking her up and down. He turns to me. "I'm surprised at you, Don. Never judge anyone by their appearance."
My mouth opens, but I don't manage to get any sound out at that. There's a fleeting grin on Little Miss Capable Of Anything's face but it disappears pretty damn quick when she sees Mac advancing towards her, looking more dangerous than I've ever seen him. She gulps and takes two more steps away from him, looking frantically for something to hide behind.
"You..." Mac starts to say, his voice alarming even me the way it's booming and echoing round inside the empty warehouse. "You dare to..."
"Mac..." The voice is only faint but it has a powerful effect. Mac stops and spins round, catching hold of my arm when he almost stumbles, as he rushes over to where Stell's sitting up with the Doc's help.
"Are you okay?" He crouches beside her, studying her carefully.
"I'm okay," she murmurs, raising her hand to his face and touching his cheek. "What about you?"
The Doc and me catch each other's eye, both of us exchanging a grin of relief. If they're both worrying about each other, they're both okay. And it seems that Stell's allowed our perp a lucky escape from a very Angry Mac.
Soon as they're reassured of each other's well-being, me and Hawkes take charge again. With me leading Little Miss Chastened, keeping her well away from Mac, the Doc makes sure Mac and Stell get out safely. They've got their arms round each other for support and though neither of them are entirely steady, and Mac looks a pretty bad sight with all that dried blood on his forehead, I'm just relieved we got them back alive.
Once outside, they got a few more questions to ask.
"Why?" Stell demands, bewildered, after we've explained the situation to her. "Why'd you need to abduct us?"
Hands clasped behind her back, the girl shuffles her feet and mumbles something none of us can hear, with her eyes cast down at the ground.
"Speak up," Mac barks and she does, instantly.
"I'm very, very sorry, I didn't mean to hurt you and I'm very sorry for kidnapping you and that you got hurt," she mutters, her gaze darting up at us for a moment, before she looks down at the ground again.
"Okay, but... why?" Stella asks again, still perplexed after she's glanced at Mac and taken hold of his hand.
Little Miss Contrite shrugs and plucks at her dress. "I only wanted to help..."
"Help with what?" Mac looks incredulous and Stell's grip on his hand tightens as she gives him a warning look.
"With the two of you. Getting you together, you know, as a couple." Finally she looks him right in the eye. "I acted with the best of intentions, really I did... please don't hurt me..." At the sight of tears squeezing out of her eyes, I roll mine. Best of intentions? Please.
Stell and Mac, however, just stare at each other, clearly holding some kind of silent conversation, before Stella turns to the girl.
"But we're already 'together'," she says. "We have been for a while, we just didn't go announcing it all over the place. There wasn't any need to make it public, so we didn't. Only those who needed to know, knew."
Like me. Who knew before anyone else did and did a heroic job, even though I say it myself, of not telling anyone else. Made sure I cleaned up on the betting pool though...
Little Miss Best Intentions, meanwhile, stares at Mac and Stella, with a smile getting bigger and bigger on her face. "Already together? Really? Wow, that's great. Congratulations!" Hands clasped together in front of her now, she turns to me. "I'm sorry to have been such a bother, Don, but now there's a happy ending for them, I'm sure there's no need for me to detain you any longer..."
The sound of our back-up and the ambulance arriving drowns out my sarcastic remark, but the grip I get on her arm isn't likely to be unnoticed. Her face falls.
"Happy endings ain't for everyone," I say, my thoughts turning again to the one I've lost.
"They can be though," she says, and I'm kind of rattled by the secretive smile she gives me.
Maybe a little rougher than I meant to be, I pull her towards the squad car. "Yeah, well, sometimes the happy ending you were hoping for gets taken away from you..."
And then I stop.
Because the person stepping out of the car that's just arrived can't possibly be who I think they are.
Everything else disappears into the background. There's nothing I'm aware of except the person coming towards me and the thousands of questions that have exploded in my brain at the sight of her.
Almost by themselves, my feet move forward until I'm running towards her. Her steps quicken until she's running, too, the two of us getting closer and closer until I know for sure, miraculously, incredibly, amazingly, it's her. It is her. Somehow, how, I don't care how, here, with me, again...
"Jess," I croak, clutching her to me and pressing my face into her neck. "Oh, God, Jess..."
It really is her, it really, really is... Jess, in my arms again, after all this time, and I'm crying, laughing and she's doing the same, telling me it's okay, she's back, she'll never leave me again.
We're lost to the world, until gradually, reality floats back into our minds and we're aware of Mac and Stell and the Doc standing round us, smiles on their faces and tears in their eyes. They gather round and though I don't want to let Jess go, I know she's in safe hands with them.
Which gives a smiling Little Miss Happy Ending the chance to tug at my sleeve.
"See, I told you. You got your happy ending, too."
"Yeah, yeah I did," I grunt, not finding it difficult to guess what she's going to ask.
Sure enough, she does. "So, do I get my happy ending as well? Just to round it all off nicely?" she asks, looking hopefully at me.
For a moment, I'm torn.
"If I cut you loose could you promise me I'd never catch you putting Mac and Stell in danger again?"
A wicked grin spreads over her face. "I promise never to let you catch me again, Detective Flack."
As I thought. With a grim smile I click the cuffs back on her and watch the grin vanish off her face.
"This isn't what's supposed to happen! This isn't fair!"
"Seems fair to me," I say. "If you want a happy ending for all of us, you're going to have to be kept under control. None of us are safe with you around."
"But... but... I'll be good, I promise! I'll behave!" she splutters and struggles, but it don't move me. Marching her towards the squad car, I ignore the tears and the promises, telling her to save them for the jury, maybe they'll take pity on her. With Jess at my side, Mac and Stell safe, too I ain't going to let anything, or anyone, jeopardise the happy ending and the new beginning we've all got.
Many thanks for reading! Reviews, and stories, are very welcome! I hope you enjoyed this and I'd love to know what you think :D Thanks to iluvcsi4ever, Suallenparker and Ballettmaus for their help with this. Lily x