A/N: OMG I was NOT expecting that at the season finale! I'm so glad USA renewed NR (not that I doubted it) and I can't wait till it comes back!

Ehem, anyway, so this is set sometime in the finale episode - between halfway through and then the end.

My mother (who also watches) surprisingly commented very matter-of-factly that Nico likes Dani. Well, now I know I'm not crazy!

So this is from Nico's point of view which was so hard to write! But I knew it couldn't be from Dani's because she is all over Matt right now. If Dani and Nico ever get together (IMO I hope so!) then it will be at least a season downline - probably 2 at this pace. And from that it would sound like it's about them but, really, it's not. Well, not exactly. It's about Nico and Gabrielle and a tiny bit about Dani.

But I'm a patient fangirl. Enough about me! I hope you like this :) and that I did Nico's mysteriousness and complicated character at least an ounce of justice.

Disclaimer: No, I don't own Necessary Roughness, the characters or have any connection, relation or otherwise, to the show and it's producers, actors, writers, et cetera. Gah, if only, though!


Nico sat at his desk, staring at the grey blank wall in front of him.

He hardly ever used this room, why would he need to? He fixed situations - usually people messing up the team and it's members. The closest he ever got to paperwork was when he had to do a background check on someone, which was always deeper than a PI background check, but his job title - or lack thereof - made that clear.

His thoughts stopped there before drifting back to just hours before.

"You don't need a therapist, you need a friend." She handed back his dollar bill and smiled.

Friend. When was the last time he'd heard that? So many years ago, it was.

He rubbed his hand over his chin before rocking the chair back.

Dr. Dani Santino had glided her way into the Hawks team and staff without anyone really noticing that she wasn't there before. But he did.

Sure, he knew why she was originally there. He was trained to spot even the tiniest detail. The brush of the hands, the glances and the conversations behind closed doors the first few days she arrived there. Hadn't been the first time someone in the team had done that though - get their lover or partner a foot in the door.

But it wouldn't be the last and his job didn't require any judgment. Actually, it required a lack of one. He was fine doing just that.

Instead, he had noticed her behavior with all of the players. Her clients.

She didn't compromise herself because of her connection to Matt. Each meeting he was in with Coach, Matt and Dr. Santino was different. But never, ever, had she wavered her opinions and feelings on the team and the players who were her clients.

She was... different. Everyone that he ever had to interact with was just that; normal. They were all thinking of their relationships, personal effects from the job and any other aspects they deemed important to themselves, and therefore compromising to some situations because of those.

But she didn't get pushed down by people or emotions or even money - the few times that had even come up in a question, that is. She was fearless when it counted and when it mattered.

He'd made more than enough nightly house-visits to know that this wasn't always the case. But she could put up one hell of a front. Was it a front, though? No, he thought, it is just part of who she is. Much like he could switch on and off who he is. Cool businessman to possible-criminal in 3 seconds flat.

So why was it that his lines had gotten blurred recently?


Ever since she'd walked into his life almost 25 years ago he'd been walking the line. Every time she came, she'd bring up their past... encounters, their feelings and she would find some way to twist him around her finger to do what she needed. Every time after she left he'd steel himself again. He'd say no more. He wouldn't let it happen again.

And yet he had.

Every single time, he had let the lines blur with lead to him following her wishes and the inevitable goodbye that followed when she got what she wanted. But this was the first time, the first real time that he'd even considered compromising himself. And she'd put him in that position.

He balled a fist together when he thought of how she'd put him in this position. He stood up to pace the room, sorting his thoughts with more ease.

He couldn't compromise himself, all that he had, for her. He couldn't, no matter what sense of loss and pain would follow. And it would, he knew all too well. He'd hold his head high - he had to. There was no other option for fixing this situation.

Love was such a troubling emotion. It only brought problems upon it's recipients. He'd sworn it off for so long and yet this whole time, he knew, undoubtably, that he was in love with her.

Was, is the key word. We had our time, he thought as he stopped walking and closed his eyes to the realization, but that time is no more and hasn't been for so long.

With the lines blurred, who knew when he'd really stopped loving Gabrielle and started holding onto the idea. The idea lost in their past. Who even knew if she loved him now? If she ever did. He'd never let himself consider that before, always thinking that it didn't matter because he wouldn't let even the possibility influence his decisions. Now, however, was the best time to consider it.

He looked down at the folder laying haphazardly in the middle of his completely cleared desk.

The DNA test.

He'd know how truthful she was in the past by her reaction to him bringing the possibility up. Never in all the world did he think he'd question her so. He hoped that she'd tell him the truth when he bluntly put it in front of her.

He never hoped before - it was a meaningless emotion that was only because you couldn't control something that was far out of your hands. But he was hoping now.

This whole situation had my stomach and head in knots, he admitted silently as he ran his hand through his hair for the twentieth time that day.

He knew in his gut that Dr. Santino was right. He did need a friend, even if it made him vunerable. And she'd be the best person for that position. It had been too many years - both without a friend and being caught up in Gabrielle. Both of those facts needed to end.



A/N2: Alright! So that sounded good in my head but I have no beta so I have no idea how that actually ended up outloud. Personal opinion and all.

If there were any bad grammer or spelling mistakes then I apologize! I have no beta so I edit and go over my stories myself.

Oh, and the DNA comment will ONLY make sense if you watch the finale and the confrontation in that. I didn't want to put any obvious spoilers in there. The fact that I put a DNA test in here kind of defies what they put in the show but they never said whether or not he did one, just that he brought it up when he met her. And, in my opinion, I think he would do it ahead of time if he was questioning her to begin with.

I hope you enjoyed it! And please review if you did! I have mac 'n cheese for you if you do! ;P

You know, I just realized that food has become the theme for my 'please review' comments. Hmm...