This takes place immediately after the last line in "Brown Eyed Girl" – Everyone goes to the bar and gets buzzed. Jane goes to the gym and gets violent. Maura goes to the kitchen and gets sexy. Jane goes to Maura's and gets laid. Finally. The end?
HIGHLY STRUNG – Part 1
"Can we get that beer now?"
Detective Jane Rizzoli confidently queries her colleagues as they stride along the sidewalk outside of BPD headquarters.
"The first three are on me," boasts Sergeant Vince Korsak as Rizzoli and Detective Barry Frost chuckle their approval.
Dr. Maura Isles, the chief medical examiner, quietly trails behind them. Lost in her thoughts over the day's events, she still manages to reach out and deliver a soft squeeze to Jane's left elbow. Jane notices. She always does.
"One quick chardonnay, then I must return and close out my paperwork for the case."
"Are you sure, Maura?" Jane places a light touch on her right shoulder. "You've gotta be exhausted like the rest of us."
The detective and the doctor exchange a long, unspoken look. It has been a difficult day for all of them but Jane knows enough not to push. She herself is unsure if she will make it past two beers.
"We won't stay too long," Jane promises.
Rizzoli curls a gentle hand along the middle of Maura's back and leads her inside The Dirty Robber. The next hour is a comfortable contrast to the chaos of the previous twenty four plus.
"Did that asshole really think he could take us cops down with an axe? What are we, friggin' trees?" Korsak polishes off his third beer as Frost and Rizzoli start on their second.
"Yeah, Jane's a birch and you're a dogwood," Frost offers.
Isles smiles into her wine glass. "And what does that make you, Detective Frost?"
Barry crosses his arms with a debonair flair and tilts his head to the side. He speaks with a deep, serious tone.
Everyone at the table brays with much needed laughter. Korsak coughs up a pretzel while Rizzoli wipes a tear from her eye. Maura's signature grin emerges and it's aimed directly at Jane. That grin, no matter how many times Jane sees it, catches her completely off guard and she takes it all in with a flush to her face.
Korsak suddenly glances down at Frost's crotch with a look of concern.
"Then you better check for termites after that hookup you had last week!"
Again with the laughter, minus Barry. Jane tosses a peanut at Vince. After the kidnapping and rescue of a fellow officer's daughter, their humor is a well-deserved release, albeit a small one.
All three simultaneously turn to the doctor with anticipation. They wait for a few moments in silence.
"What?" Maura's curious tone surprises even Jane.
"No science lesson about bugs or the history of trees?"
"I'm sorry, everyone. Is there a specific insect or arbor you would like to know about?"
It's obvious that the doctor's mind is back in her lab. Detective Rizzoli's mind instantly blocks out Korsak, Frost, everyone at the bar, her own beer, and laser focuses solely on her friend.
"Are you okay?"
"I'm a little distracted." Maura coaxes the last drop of wine from her glass. "I really need to get back and finish that paperwork."
Jane unknowingly caresses Maura's fingertips with her own. Maura responds in kind. It's now Frost and Korsak's turn to exchange looks.
"Do you want me to walk you back?"
"Another time, Jane. I'll be better when everything is settled. You, on the other hand, need to go to bed and get some sleep. All of you – doctor's orders!"
"Dead doc's orders," sniffs Korsak.
"Even so, you don't want to end up naked on my table."
Frost stifles his words and sideways glances at Jane. She's too busy looking at Maura to notice. And there's that engrossing grin again. Jane catches her breath as the always elegant Dr. Isles leaves the booth and glides out of the bar. Rizzoli's stare follows behind until the door shuts. Black Oak Barry clears his throat.
"And that there is some super fine maple."
"Hey." Jane glowers at Frost with a combo defensive/aggressive look.
"Girl, please!" Barry and Vince snicker at each other.
The detective drains her beer bottle and slams it down on the table. Rising up, she quickly realizes that going home to sleep is not a favorable option. She's highly strung and totally needs to be undone.
"I'm hitting the gym to blow off some steam. You two clowns gonna be okay or do I need to call a cab?"
Frost continues his deep, serious tone.
"But Dr. Isles wanted you… in bed."
Korsak now adopts a higher pitched feminine voice.
"Doctor's orders, Jane. Oh, Jane. Jane!"
The two men cackle as a neutered Rizzoli stomps away from their table. She spins around on her heel before she reaches the door and calls back to them.
"All kidding aside, it's a real honor to work with you both, especially after today. You make me proud to wear the badge."
With sudden somber expressions, both men nod in silence and raise their glasses at her.
The late-afternoon sun fades into a smattering of fluffy pinks and oranges over the undulating harbor. Jane makes her way into a typical brick building. After the Robber, this is the other favorite hangout for Boston's blue crew. No doughnut shops on this block. Inside is a testament to the brute force needed to do the job – and do it well.
"Hey, sis!" Officer Frankie Rizzoli drops his dumbbells and trots over.
The two exchange a brief but heartfelt hug.
"Great job today, Janie."
"Thanks, little brother."
"Why the hell aren't you home catching some shuteye?"
Jane rolls her shoulders and stretches. "Can't. Way too amped."
"I bet you are. Feel like sparring in the ring?"
"Hell yeah, but not with you – don't wanna damage your handsome Rizzoli mug."
"You're just scared of me, admit it."
"Trembling." Jane fake shakes her upper limbs, winks, and then heads into the locker room.
Stripping off her sweaty, rumpled office attire of boots, belt, slacks, shirt, underwear, and watch is the first step in a ritual to rid the day's nightmares from her mind. Now clad in a black athletic top, matching shorts, and a pair of cross trainers, she returns to the main floor and starts skipping rope.
Frankie and an officer buddy playfully walk past. They chant in unison.
"Not last night but the night before, twenty-four robbers came knocking at my door…"
Jane snakes her rope into a bullwhip and smacks the ass of the offending party.
"Frankie, I understand – but you, Sanchez?"
"Your bro's idea, not mine."
Everyone exchanges lighthearted guffaws. Officer Sanchez extends his hand to Jane and shakes hers with reverence.
"Way to go, Rizzoli. Dan is a very lucky man. His family owes you big time."
Jane brushes off the compliment.
"Everyone here would have done the exact same."
Frankie flashes a look of pride at his sister, prompting her to stand up a little straighter. He now turns to Sanchez.
"So, dude, are ya gonna spot me or what?"
"Try not to strain anything, guys."
The two men head off as Jane sets her sights on the speed bag. The bumps and bruises of her earlier actions ache a little but she unfurls and settles into a steady rhythm.
Her mind flashes to her old partner. Rescuing Dan's daughter and dealing so closely with his wife and son might have been awkward considering their past history. But she felt absolutely nothing for him now except concern for a fellow cop.
They had a one-week stand and it ended as quickly as it started. Sex for release, pure and simple. It was a problem that plagued more than a few partners but Rizzoli only gave into it with him. She was young and horny. He was more than accommodating.
But Jane knew continuing down this road would never earn her the respect of the department. She heard what the boys gossiped about when it came to female officers and being a good cop was vastly more important to her than being a good lay.
Not that she wasn't a good lay.
In fact, she was a great lay. Damn amazing lay! She had been told this by all half dozen of her lovers. Yes, it would shock everyone to know that her number did not even reach double digits. She kept her heart in check and her attention on the job.
Jane was also made keenly aware of her physical beauty by the men on the squad and she tried to diminish it so she wouldn't be known as Italian Vogue, their ridiculous nickname for her.
The only other woman in the building that turned heads faster than her own belonged to Dr. Maura Isles, The Queen of the Dead. And Jane's head turned for her as well. She was the living embodiment of sultry which made her intellect all the more appealing.
The day Jane met Maura, she rapidly realized she was her equal. And their strengths and weaknesses were complimentary, not divisive. The men who were Jane's equals were usually assholes of epic proportions.
Jane often wondered if that meant she was an asshole of epic proportions. Her family would make her feel that way from time to time. Even Frost and Korsak did so unintentionally. Maura was the only one who did not. She made Jane feel like a rock star.
Every fucking day.
Working together for well over a year, Maura had quickly become Jane best's friend. Ever. And Rizzoli did not want to destroy a good thing – a precious thing – with simple lust. Yet, deep down, the detective suspected it was much more than that. At least, on her end.
Their ever-increasing touches and steamy glances suggested that the good doctor might be open to more, much more, if Jane had the nerve to try. But Jane is too frightened to do so. It's only the second time in her life where fear bores beyond bone and into marrow.
The detective now pauses the pounding of the speed bag and takes a breather on the blue mat beneath her. Wiping her face with a towel, Rizzoli now grabs a cold sports drink and gulps it down. Jane sadly realizes that nothing, so far, has taken her edge off.
"Up for a little fun, detective?"
The barking baritone echoes from inside the boxing ring. An old partner, Jake Briggs, motions to her with a crude taunt.
"Aw, man." Jane sighs to herself and tries to look away.
"C'mon, hero – let's play!"
Jane instantly flashes back to an earlier encounter with the annoyingly deplorable pig. They were finishing the last cups of cold coffee outside of their patrol car when Briggs let loose with one of his warped world views. Jane only half listened.
"Y'know, there are only two kinds of chick cops, Rizzoli – lezzies who hate cock and whores who can't get enough of it. What kind are you?"
She considered nut crunching him for a brief second but it would only make matters worse. Ultimately, Jane knew her reaction would have reverberations for months. So, she smiled, grabbed Briggs by his wrist, and twisted him down to his knees.
"I'm the kind that's gonna save your worthless life on the job because you're too busy being a dick to pay attention."
It wasn't long after that Briggs put in for a transfer.
"Are you gonna get in here with me or not, Rizzoli?"
Jane's focus is pulled back to the present. More men around the gym are now joining the crowd of quizzical looks.
"Ignore him, sis – go home and get some rest."
Frankie glares at Briggs as Jane heads for the ring.
"Oh, I'm fine, Frankie. Just fine."
"This is only sparring, Jane."
"Sure it is."
The detective slaps on some gloves and headgear as Briggs struts around, licking his chops. With a feral motion, Jane twists her long body over the ropes and hops into the center.
"This is gonna be fun for me, Briggs – not you."
Jane definitely has the height and age advantage but Briggs is a stocky wall of meat, ready to absorb her blows.
"Shall we dance?"
Rizzoli is deaf to the surrounding din as the rumble lasts a couple of rounds. No clear winner yet. Briggs tries to get inside his opponent's head with a well-placed whisper.
"You're gonna suck my cannoli and like it."
Jane responds with a solid blow to Briggs' right flank. He nearly doubles over but rapidly regains his footing. A scowl of stank is plastered on her face.
"Thanks for ruining dessert for me – FOR A YEAR, stronzo!"
"Sorry, I don't speak WOP."
The fist flourishes continue. Frankie and Sanchez watch with agitation.
"Don't let him bait you, Janie – keep on his right!"
All activity in the gym ceases as all eyes are now squarely on Rizzoli and Briggs.
"So, hero – what's it like fucking a rich bitch?"
Rizzoli is so stunned, she doesn't have time to see the punch, let alone block it. Briggs lands a nasty upper cut that sends her tumbling to the floor. After a second to consider if she wants this to continue, Jane slowly raises herself up and looks Briggs dead in the eye.
"Why don't you try being a real man?"
"You'd know all about that 'cuz your top-shelf snatch sure loves slummin' it, Southie style, don't she?"
Frankie now jumps into the ring with Sanchez right behind.
"THAT'S ENOUGH – c'mon, Jane, let's go!"
She desperately wants to take another swing at Briggs but realizes the scenario is rapidly deteriorating. She turns her back and begins to follow Frankie and Sanchez out of the ring. Briggs bellows after them.
"Tell me, Rizzoli… when you eat Isles' pussy, does it taste like caviar?"
A bolt of black-haired lightning cracks the center of the ring. Briggs is now flat on his ass with a bleeding, broken nose.
"DISGUSTING SONOFABITCH, GET UP."
"Jane, stop it!
Frankie and Sanchez have all they can do to pull her away from him. With wild eyes and gnashed teeth, Rizzoli tears off her gloves and headgear and gets directly in Briggs' face.
"I SAID GET THE FUCK UP, YOU COWARD."
Briggs gurgles in extreme pain.
"YOU'RE A FUCKING DEAD MAN, YOU FUCKING BASTARD – IS THAT FUCKING WOP ENOUGH FOR YA?"
Others have now ringed the ring to break up the discord. Frankie and Sanchez hustle Jane out of the gym in double-time. The younger Rizzoli puts his sister in the passenger seat of his classic Camero and silently offers a look of gratitude to Sanchez as they leave.
Headlights zoom down the boulevard. After a few moments of silence and deep breaths, Frankie tries to cool the mood with retro tunes. Jane hisses her displeasure.
"Aw God, Spandau Ballet? – are you kidding me?"
"I like this song!"
"Have I taught you nothing?"
Jane snaps open the glove compartment and fishes through the CDs. She accusingly holds up Queensryche and slams it in the player.
"Apparently, I have - you're such a liar, little brother, you said you didn't take it."
"I borrowed it."
"Six months ago?"
"You know you're gonna get written up, Jane."
"Like I give a shit."
"Lucky for you, today's earlier events might smooth it out."
"Again, like I give a shit."
"You do know why you went ballistic when Briggs mentioned Maura, right?"
"HE DIDN'T JUST 'MENTION' HER, FRANKIE, HE FUCKING PISSED ALL OVER HER… AND ME."
"Whoa, calm down, I'm on your side, remember?"
"Sorry, I just…"
Jane pounds her open palm against the car side three succinct times.
"You break it, you fix it."
The older sibling shoots a half smile at the younger one.
"Wouldn't be the first time, would it?"
"You know you're in love with Maura… own up to it."
Jane loudly sighs into her hands and rubs her face.
"Instead of banging the crap out of my car, Janie, why don't you try banging the crap out of her? Just a thought."
Jane responds by jamming up the volume and slumping in her seat.
"JET CITY WOMAN, IT'S A LONG WAY, HOME TO MY…"
Frankie can't help but join in.
"JET CITY WOMAN. I SEE HER FACE EVERYWHERE, CAN'T GET HER OUT OF MY MIND…"
The ride to Jane's apartment takes extra long due to heavy traffic and the outrageous need to finish the entire CD with air drums and guitar. Evening shadows wrap the city skyline with a westerly breeze blowing cold. Frankie now pulls up directly in front of his sister's place.
"I'm glad I have a brother like you, Frankie."
The detective pats the younger Rizzoli on the arm as she unbuckles her seatbelt. He returns the pat.
"I'll tell Tommy you said that."
Jane flings the door open and thinks twice about taking her CD. Frankie gives her the eye.
"One more month, then I want it back."
"Go inside and crash, because crashing Briggs' face is not the answer."
"And you know what is?"
"You do… time for some blue sky, Janie."