Our Friendship is Like Steel

Roz went into the booth, only to find the one person she really didn't want to talk to: Julia.

"Hello, Roz," Julia said.

"Julia," Roz replied, going over to the desk to pick up some papers.

"I just talked to that waitress over at Nervosa. The one who answered Frasier's phone. Gave you up immediately."

"Relax; it was a joke," Roz laughed forcefully.

"Okay, so what's going on?" Julia asked. "Do you have some sort of problem with me seeing Frasier?"

"Well, as long as you're asking," Roz said, "I think you're all wrong for him."

"That's not your call."

"I think I know Frasier a little better than you do." Roz walked back to her part of the booth; Julia followed.

"So?" Julia asked.

"So, he deserves someone better," Roz replied. "Someone who'll appreciate him."

"Really?" Julia asked; she looked as though she was going to snap any minute.

"Yeah," Roz said bluntly. "Frasier's a good guy. He's smart and sweet and way too good for you! Just leave, alright? Nobody here likes you anyway."

"Frasier seems to," Julia said coldly.

"Well, he's an idiot."

Julia stepped closer to Roz, eyeing her. "Are you trying to save Frasier from me or are you trying to save him for yourself?"

"Are you out of your mind?" Roz snapped.

"Are you in love with him?" Julia asked Roz.

"Go to hell, Julia," Roz spat.

"That would explain why you turned down that great job."

"That is not true."

"Then, stay out of my way," Julia hissed.

"Or what? Are you going to hit me or something?"

"Don't think I won't."

"Well, you're sure taking your time!"

Julia and Roz both shot angry glances at the men who were gathered around the booth; they quickly turned their heads away.

"Stay away from him," Roz said, turning back to Julia. "Got it?"

Roz left the booth. The men were still gathered around the window.

"GET OUT OF HERE!" She shrieked, causing them to scatter.

Roz was fuming all the way to her car.

She couldn't believe the nerve of that woman!

She wasn't in love with Frasier; he was like a brother to her! Sure, they slept together, but that was it! Nothing more!

Frasier was her closest friend, and she couldn't let him get hurt by Julia. A woman like her doesn't deserve him!

One thing's for sure: Roz was going to have to talk to Frasier and convince him to get out of this relationship.

Roz went over to Elliot Bay Towers that night only to find that Frasier was not there; he was out with Julia!

She was able to convince Martin to help her keep Frasier away from Julia.

But that planned unraveled quickly when Frasier and Julia came back, and Julia announced that she brought Martin cake!

"New plan," he whispered to Roz. "I'll distract her while you talk to Frasier."

Martin rose from his chair and followed Julia into the kitchen.

Roz took a deep breath and approached Frasier.

"What's going on, Roz?" Frasier asked. "I wasn't expecting to see you tonight."

"I have something very important to talk to you about," she said nervously. "And I need you to listen to me."

"Of course." He smiled. "It's what I do best."

"I really, really, really think you should stop seeing Julia."

"Oh, Roz, I know you two have your difficulties."

"No!" Roz interrupted. "It's not that! She's all wrong for you."

"I think I see what's going on," Frasier said. "You and I have a close relationship. A new woman comes into the station, and we form a close relationship; you feel threatened."

"No; she's evil," Roz said seriously. Frasier cocked his head at her wording. "It's not your fault. You can't see it because she puts an act on around you."

"Did it ever occur to you that maybe she's putting on an act for everybody else, and I see her as she really is?" Frasier asked.

"She's got you totally brainwashed," Roz said, shaking her head.

"Roz, you have no right to come over here and run her down to me. It's really none of your business."

"This is my business!" Roz yelled, clearly hurt at his choice of words.

"And why?"

"Because..." Her voice faltered. "We're friends. I can't believe you're turning on me like this! I gave up a job that was ten times better to stay on your show!"

"Yes," Frasier said, nodding, "and frankly, I don't understand that! Why did you turn down that job?"

"Out of loyalty to you!" She shouted.

"Loyalty to me?" He asked, unconvinced. "Are you sure? Are you sure it wasn't fear? Are you sure you're not using me as an excuse not to grow and move on?"

Roz stared, wide eyed at him. How could he say that? She grew so much over the past five years! She grew so much since the birth of Alice!

"Who wants cake?" Julia sang, coming out of the kitchen with a plate of cake in her hands.
Frasier turned to Julia.

Roz stepped closer to him. "You're going to have to choose, Frasier," she told him.

"You will not put me in this position, Roz!" He snapped. "We will discuss it later!"

"NO!" Roz reached the end of her breaking point. "Tell me!" She pointed to Julia. "It's her or me! Tell me now, or I swear to God I will walk out of here and I will not come back!"

Frasier was speechless; he was so angry with Roz for putting him in such a position. He sighed and walked over to Julia's side.

"Thank you, Julia," he said. "I think I will have some cake." He glared at Roz.

"F-fine," Roz said weakly. She grabbed her purse and left the apartment, heart pounding painfully.

Roz threw herself against her bed, trying to make sense of all that had just happened. Did he really choose Julia over her? The woman he had known for a less than a month over the woman he had worked almost eleven years with!

"I thought he was my friend!" She screamed into her pillow.

"Mommy?" Alice asked, stepping into Roz's room. She had a teddy bear in her arms.

"Oh, Alice, dear," Roz said, rising from the bed and reaching out for Alice. "I'm sorry. I'm okay. Don't worry about me."
Alice nodded and hugged her mother. Roz held her tightly.

At least I have you, she thought. Nothing can take you away from me.

Roz left KACL and took the job that was originally offered to her, but she found she had difficulty adjusting to it.
She wasn't getting along to well with anyone, especially since her assistant was being an idiot.

"Hey, Roz," her boss said, coming into her office.

"Hi," Roz replied, picking up her purse and getting ready to leave for the day.

Her boss stopped her at the door.

"Yes?" She asked with a forced smile.

"How are you?" He asked.

"Good." She tried to go around him, but he blocked her. "Excuse me."

"Roz, I wanted to ask you something."


"You want to go out with me? I think we can have a good thing going."

Roz gaped at him. Did he really just ask her out?

She laughed uneasily. "I'm not ready for a relationship right now."

"What do you mean?"

"I just started a new job," she explained. "I'm just not ready, okay?"

"Okay..." He said, raising his hands up as he backed away and let her out.

Roz couldn't believe what had just happened. And she couldn't believe that she turned him down! He was cute and charming and knew what he was doing with his life. What did she mean by she wasn't ready? She hadn't had a steady boyfriend since Roger! She was totally ready to make a relationship!

Her thoughts went to Frasier. Her relationship with him just shattered into a million pieces. She had never felt so hurt in her life.

"I don't understand this!" She cried, resting her head on the steering wheel of her car.

Roz turned the key into the ignition and drove to Elliot Bay Towers. She had to make things right with Frasier. Even if he doesn't love her back, they could at least stay friends.

Roz froze at his door, wondering what she could say to him. She wouldn't be surprised if he turned her away after what she did a few nights ago.

"Just calm down, Roz," she told herself firmly. "You've known Frasier for eleven years. You can make this right!"

She knocked on the door quickly.

It was Daphne who answered the door.

"Roz, what are you doing here?"

"I need to talk to Frasier. You know what happened, didn't you?"

"Yes, yes, I know." Daphne nodded. "He told us last night."

"I need to make things right with him," Roz said. "Is he here?"

"Yes, he is. He's in his bedroom."

Daphne grabbed her coat off the rack. Niles was sitting on the couch, all ready to go, and Martin was in his chair.

"Frasier, you've got a visitor!" Daphne called out.

Roz was grateful that didn't use her name because Frasier might not want to come see her.

"Coming!" Frasier called back. "Roz… what are you doing here?"

"Oh, we don't want to be late for the movie, do we?" Niles spoke up. "Come on, Dad, let's go."

"Alright," Martin said, getting out of his chair and following Niles and Daphne. "See ya two later."

"Bye," Frasier said.

The three of them left the apartment and Frasier and Roz were all alone.

"What are you doing here?" He asked again.

"I wanted to apologize," Roz said. "I had no right to make you choose."

"No, you didn't!" He yelled.

"But, you really hurt me, Frasier. I've never been so hurt in my entire life!"

Frasier rubbed the back of his head nervously. "I never meant to hurt you; you just put me in such an awkward position."

"I know I did! And I'm sorry for that! We're friends, Frasier. If you thought someone was wrong for me, you would speak up and I wouldn't be angry with you. I would be glad that you cared enough for me to do something. I thought you would appreciate it if I did the same."

"Julia does care for me, and I for her."

"I understand," Roz said quietly. "Can I please come back to work?"

"You want to come back to KACL?" He asked incredulously. .

"Yes! I hate my new job!" She screamed. "My boss hit on me! And my assistant is a complete and total dunderhead, and I can't fire her because she's three minorities rolled into one! I want out! I'd rather have Bulldog and Noel flirt with me than my boss!"

"Wow," he laughed. "That job must have been awful if you prefer Bulldog and Noel."

"I know, right?" She smiled. "You know, I warned her to stay away from you."

"You threatened her? For God's sake, Roz!" Instead of being angry, Frasier found himself laughing. He didn't know why, but he found it extremely amusing.

"Shut up!" She laughed with him. "Frasier, I'm glad we can still be friends."

"Roz, I am disgusted with myself for what I did to you. If Julia ever tries to pick fights with you, she's not worth it."

"No… You have good judgment. But, we'll just have to see, right?"

She laughed and hugged Frasier.

The door opened to reveal Julia.

"What's this?" She asked, glancing from Frasier to Roz.

"Hello, Julia," Roz said in a sing song voice.

"I thought you were gone."

"You thought wrong, didn't you? I'm here to stay! Coming back to KACL!"

"You better not try to get in my way again," Julia said.

"Don't worry." Roz glanced up at Frasier. "He's all yours."

Roz winked at Frasier and Julia and left the apartment, a big smile creeping across her face.

The End

Author's note: This was going to be a FrasierxRoz, but the thing I really love about their relationship is their friendship. It's one of the strongest friendships I have ever seen in a show. And if you're wondering why Julia just opened the door, she and Frasier had plans that day. He told her to come over around three because he would have the apartment to himself. He also told Martin to keep the door unlocked so she can let herself in. Yeah… lol