A/N: Okay, this is the final chapter! Thank you all for sticking with me, even those of you who only read stories where E/O ends up as a couple. I hope I opened your eyes to other possibilities. Thank you to my reviewers, and please, do not forget to review one final time.


6:52 p.m.

The Street in Front of The Natural History Museum

"She going to be okay?" Olivia asked the paramedic as he loaded the hostage into the ambulance. Wilkins' body bag was only a few feet away and for once a body bag wasn't taunting her.

"Yeah, I don't see anything other than a few bruises. She'll be fine" he said. "But you, Detective, should get looked at"

"Oh, I think I'm going to be fine" Olivia said, finding Elliot's eyes in the crowd. She was just about to head over to him when Ricio appeared in front of her.

"Olivia, I shouldn't have burst in there like that. I—"

"Ricio, relax. I'm not going to report you for breaking protocol" Olivia said, placing a comforting hand on his shoulder, just the way Elliot always did for her.

"Olivia, I—" Ricio started, but he'd already lost her attention. She was watching Elliot head over to her slowly. "I guess I should expect to break in a new partner on Monday?" he asked. Olivia smiled; her first genuine smile in nine months.

"I'd bet money on it" Olivia said. Ricio smiled back then, and placed a hand on Olivia's arm.

"I'll see you around Benson" he said, walking off just as Elliot approached.

"Hey" Elliot said. Olivia leaned back against a cop car.

"Hey yourself" she said, smiling as he leaned back next to her.

"Liv I just wa—"

"—nted to say you're sorry. You know you don't have to—"

"—apologize. I know that too. It's just, what happened—"

"—isn't a regret anymore, nothing is. I guess we finally just—"

"—found ourselves" Elliot finished. She and Elliot shared a look then and suddenly burst out laughing.

"I missed that" Elliot said when they both stopped laughing.

"I missed a lot of things" Olivia said wistfully.

"You want them back?" Elliot asked and Olivia smiled, her hand finding his on the car and squeezing it. Elliot squeezed back and smiled at her. They knew that this wasn't the last time they would fight, or the last time one of them would transfer or disappear, or the last time their relationships would be in shambles because of the other, but it was the first time they realized that the world would keep turning.

"I already have them" Olivia said as they released hands and began to walk away from the scene. They fell into step easily, their gaits instantly finding each other. "So, what now?"

"How about I buy you a drink?" Elliot asked.

"I'd like that" Olivia said.

Elliot smiled at her, "Oh yeah?" he asked, bumping her shoulder just slightly.

She caught her balance right before running into two women, one older with long red nails and another with short brown hair and a skittish expression.

"Oh sorry" Liv mumbled as she caught back up with Elliot. "Maybe you can tell me about my godchild?" she continued. Elliot shot her a look and Olivia merely smiled, following him to O'Malleys and letting their future begin the way their past had started that night three months ago…


A/N: Okay, please tell me you caught on to that last little bit...prequel to Payback had been my goal after all. Also, this story comes complete with deleted scenes, so let me just clean them up a bit and you'll see alternate and deleted scenes in a few days/weeks. Thanks for reading!

P.S.: Some deleted scenes are really E/O (which is why they were deleted most likely,) but for you die hards they're worth a read...