A/N: I love Helen and Nikki but I have to admit I got a little pissed with the writers breaking them up and messing them around so I have decided to rewrite their romance episode by episode.
Series 1, Episode 1
"Okay let's have some quiet please. Quiet for Miss Stewart come on quiet!" James Fenner, the principal officer, was making sure that Helen could be heard. He was one the most hated screws on G Wing and one of the most abusive to boot. He had made an enemy of many of the women on G Wing
"Thank you. Now I'm sure you all know that last night Carol Byatt suffered in her room which was not discovered until first unlock!" Helen Stewart was fresh out of university and had only spent about two months in Larkhall prison. She had seen a lot of things and had run ins with a number of prisoners from G Wing and was about to have one with one of G Wing's most difficult prisoners.
"Yeah!" it was understandable that the women were upset about what happened since it was one of their own
"Now I know you all must be feeling very upset about this. I can assure you that I am too and so are my officers. Now I personally went to see Carol in hospital this morning and I am glad to say that she'll soon be well enough to be back with us. Now I also spoke to her about what happened and I promised her that I would conduct a thorough investigation into why and how she was left unattended. Now I have since spoken to all the officers concerned" She looks at Jim Fenner, she hated to play the all-boys game but felt as if she had been backed into a corner on this one "But I have to conclude that what happened here was a tragic set of circumstances"
"A what! She nearly bled to death you should all be sacked" This was just a taster of what was about come
"I'm sorry, but as far as I can conclude there are no grounds for disciplinary action" It was now a near riot and Helen was getting worried to was about to become an all-out one "I promise you I'm going to make changes to procedure so that no more accidents like this can ever happen here again" Helen was unaware she was about to feel the full force of hurricane Nikki Wade
"What do you mean accident? That wasn't an accident"
"She was calling for a doctor" Julie Sanders was one of Carol's best friends and a true- hater of the screws especially BodyBag or Sylvia Hollamby
"We heard her" Julie Johnston was Julie S's best friend and had heard Carol shouting for a doctor
"And so did that cow there" Nikki wasn't the screws' best friend nor would she ever be and she certainly wasn't a fan of Sylvia and Jim "So how come she didn't lift a finger" Helen was knew Nikki was right but her hands were well and truly tied
"Will you please…" This was about to blow up and Helen knew it "Everyone!"
"Come on quieten down please! Quiet!"
"Thank you" She was about to say something when Nikki butted in
"No let me say it for her" Helen turns to look at Nikki, it was the first time she had gotten a real look at the inmate and saw the potential that was there deep down inside of the woman "Well what she's telling us is we're none of us safe in here isn't she" the girls all mumble in agreement with Nikki's statement "Cos even when we're bleeding to death we don't get believed. Well I'm telling her from us, you lot can't run this prison unless we help you" This was getting personal, fast. Helen knew this was a threat and a fact. Hurricane Nikki had struck and Helen was struggling to recover "And if we don't get respect from your screws then don't think we're gonna make you look good in front of your VIP guests cos we're not" This got a round of laughs from the other women on G Wing "So you can shove your stupid fashion show up your arse" This elicited a cheer from the women. Nikki had told the screws how it was going to work and if they didn't like it this is what it was going to be like from now on
"Fine. Consider it cancelled. This wing will not be taking part" With that the air around both Helen and Nikki was filled with discontentment and anger. Helen angrily points at Nikki "And you are on rule 43. Lock them up" Helen walks away from Nikki, shaken by the encounter. Jim follows trying to persuade her to reconsider with little success. With that Helen went back to her office whilst Nikki was taking down the block.
After she had been put in strips; Nikki couldn't seem to get the image of Helen Stewart off her mind, something about the young Scot had gotten to Nikki big time and she couldn't figure out what it was. The scot had an air of confidence and grace; mix that with the fiery Scottish temper she undoubtedly had Nikki found it rather sexy and attractive.
Helen's day went from bad to worse when Jim Fenner had gone behind her back to Stubberfield telling him all about near riot. Stubberfield had forced her to reconsider and had told her bluntly to get it sorted; which had given her an idea. Get Nikki Wade onside.
Helen then confronted Jim and told him never to go behind her back again; she suddenly realised what a bastard he truly was. She had gotten her revenge of Sylvia by sending her to help with a regular, Smelly Nelly Snape, which gave Helen a source of amusement. Her day didn't get any better when she got home; her boyfriend had brought his work home, which she hated with a passion. However the evening got better when they started to drink and with Helen being a Scotswoman she could certainly hold the liquor.
Helen had also been plagued by thoughts of Nikki Wade especially after the meeting with Stubberfield. She knew that she had to get Nikki onside in order to win the other women over and she knew it wasn't going to be easy with no idea where to start or what Nikki was like as a person for example what her interests were etcetera. However there was something in those brown eyes that Helen latched on to and that was Nikki's need to be difficult, need to be a leader, need to stand up for her friends and Helen knew if she could filter away Nikki's need to be difficult and help her embrace the need to be a leader and to stand up for her friends then they could possibly be a good team.
The next day Helen's first stop when she came in to work was to see Nikki in confinement, she was shocked and anger to find the inmate in strips
"What the hell is she doing in strips!" The officer's face was blank as a sheet of paper "Well go and get her clothes here immediately"
"Yes Ma'am" It was a mumbled response but loud enough for Helen to hear
"I'm sorry this should not have happened"
"Happens all the time didn't you know" The smugness in Nikki's voice riled Helen up even more but she refused to let it boil over
"Well it won't in future" Nikki could tell Helen was filled with empty promises and a naivety that was clear for everyone to see
"Why you gonna let us lot out and we'll lock up your screws instead?" Helen sits down on the bed and looks at the bitter inmate. She had read Nikki's file briefly and had seen how bitter and twisted the inmate had become in the two years she had been in Larkhall; she had felt sadness and compassion for her
"Look, Nikki, I intend to make a lot of changes here but I need co-operation" Nikki couldn't help but laugh inside. Poor woman had no idea that she was singing the wrong tune. There was no way a woman could overthrow the all-boys network and change the prison service over night
"You're right I can't run things here without your help"
"Listen darlin" The word stuck a cord with Helen, one that had not been stuck before. "I don't even know how people like you sleep at night if you believe in a system that locks up pregnant women"
"Well you're just gonna have to trust me I don't" Nikki believed her instantly; there was an honesty in the young woman's voice that stuck the compassionate side of Nikki, well what was left of it.
Both women had come to a silent understanding with each other when the officer returned with Nikki's clothes. Helen stood up and looked away as Nikki walked to the other side of the cell in order to dress. She pulls on her underwear and trousers then puts on her bra, glancing briefly behind her to see Helen quickly turning her face away.
Helen had never looked at other woman the way she had just looked at Nikki Wade. Nikki's body was well toned and was extremely attractive. Christ Helen was actually getting turned on by another woman's body and that was scaring her beyond all reason
"It's up to you either we both climb down together and make something positive out of this" Nikki pulls her hoodie over the top of her head before answering the wing governor
"Or we'll all lose out to the old boys network" they look at each other with fierce determination. They were going to make this partnership work for the sake of the women on the wing. The confrontational air still lingered between them and would remain throughout their relationship.
Helen escorts Nikki and Carol Byatt back on the wing; Fenner and Sylvia couldn't believe it. Fenner was livid; he knew Helen was up to something
"Okay can you give me a minute please, I've got an important announcement to make" the women all quieten down to give Nikki the limelight "This unit is back in the fashion show tomorrow" The women all cheer. Fenner knew what Helen's game was; get the prisoners on her side by allying herself with Nikki Wade "Cos seeing as I helped get it cancelled I personally guaranteed to Miss Stewart" The two women share a glance with was laced with a shaky trust but a deep understanding "That if they let us back in G-Wing would give it our best" the women give other cheer; they were grateful to both Nikki and Helen for giving them the opportunity back "Yeah, so if that's okay with you babes go out and strut your stuff right!" the women all clap with appreciation. Nikki looks at Helen who gives her a slight nod of thanks before leaving the wing. The pair had just unwillingly given Fenner ammo as well ignited the spark of sexual attraction between the two of them.
The fashion show had been a success and Stubbefield was very happy as was Helen. Her deal with Nikki wasn't going to be easy to keep considering Nikki's history and her reluctance to trust screws.
"Nikki" Nikki turns around to see Helen jogging towards her. Nikki knew that Helen wanted her to be a nark but there was no way in hell that she was going to be the wing's teacher's pet. "I just wanted to say thank you again for helping me out" Nikki smiles smugly and gives a slight shake of the head
"Don't think I did anything for you Miss" Nikki had, in her mind, done it for the wing but unknowingly she, in her heart, she had done it for Helen as she will continue to do for the remainder of her time in Larkhall.