Plot: Boyd has been given an award, but for reasons he won't discuss, he doesn't want to collect it.
Disclaimer: I own nothing.
"Don't start Grace, I'm not going and that's that."
"I've just walked through the door; I haven't said a bloody word."
"Yet, but let's be honest, we both know what you've come in here for."
"How do you know what I've come in for, I'm not even sure myself yet."
"I know you've seen it."
"The letter that's been on my desk for the last couple of hours, stop playing games Grace, I'm not going and that's final."
"Okay, supposing that is what I have come in for, why aren't you going?"
"Because it isn't my thing, you know I hate all that pomp and ceremony."
"No Grace, I am not going to discuss this."
"Well I think we should."
"You cannot ignore this."
"Yes I can."
"No you can't, and it's not just that either, you shouldn't ignore it, the entire bloody thing is for you, how can you not go."
"Easily, like this." Boyd picked up the letter from his desk and ripped it in half and then half again, before throwing it into the bin.
"God sometimes you are so childish."
"Why? Because I don't want to go to some pointless poncy ceremony where a bunch of tossers in uniforms, who spend most of their time slagging me off and trying to work out ways to fire me, shake my hand and tell me what a great guy I am. It's bollocks Grace, and you know it as much as I do."
"What you did was an act of unbelievable bravery."
"No it wasn't, it was something anyone would have done under the same circumstances, and I don't need a piece of metal pinned to me to say otherwise."
"Now who's talking bollocks, if you pardon my French."
"Grace Foley, I don't ever think I've heard you use that term before."
"I think this warrants the use of such extreme language." Boyd gave her a look, the look that said don't go there. "You have been awarded a bravery medal, and not just any medal, the highest civilian medal, only awarded for extreme acts of bravery and it's a bloody miracle that it isn't being awarded posthumously."
"Don't over dramatize it Grace"
"What you did was stupid, and fool hardy, and idiotic, but it was also an impulsive act of bravery that saved the lives of thirty children and put your own life in severe jeopardy. You deserve not only the medal in question, but also the pomp and ceremony that goes with it."
"Well you go, because I don't want to."
"Why don't you want to go?"
"Don't try and psychoanalyze me Grace, I'm not your patient."
"No, you're a bloody idiot, and there's no way on earth I'm going to let you get out of going to this ceremony."
"And um….exactly how are you going to get me to go."
"Oh I think you'll find I have many, many ways of changing your mind DSI Boyd."
"Well you knock yourself out Doctor Foley, I'm off out."
"Uh, I'm not finished with you yet." Before she could continue he was slamming his office door behind him and walking up the CCU office stairs.
She seemed to spend the afternoon looking up every time the doors to the offices opened, but her wait was in vain, and he didn't return at all, he sent Spence a text saying he was in a meeting all afternoon and would see them all tomorrow. But Grace was never one to give up easily, she went home, showered and changed and waited long enough for him to be home before driving to his house. She knocked on the door and then leant against the porch waiting for him to open it.
Boyd opened the door with a beer in is hand, it was a warm evening and he was dressed in a manner she'd not seen him in before, but his casual shorts and black round neck tee-shirt actually looked very good on him, he gave an exasperated sigh when he saw her. "What do you want Grace?"
"That's a nice way to greet a friend Boyd." He didn't speak he just opened the door a little wider and indicated with a nod of his head for her to come in. She walked past him and looked him up and down, "is it a dress down day?" She said sarcastically, and then took his bottle of beer off him and proceeded to drink it.
"Do help yourself." He replied whilst looking at his empty hand. "What do you mean dress down day, I'm at home Grace, actually I've been mowing the grass and now I'm enjoying a beer whilst sitting in the garden."
The layout of his home was very familiar to her, as hers was to him; she walked through to his kitchen and opened the fridge, "have you got any wine?"
He walked over to the fridge and budged her out of the way pulling a bottle of white wine from the top shelf of his fridge, "will this be to madams liking?"
"That will do nicely thank you."
He opened the bottle and grabbed a couple of glasses. "Come outside, you haven't seen the garden since I finished it."
"Lead on, mine host."
Boyd had made his garden his latest project and spent every spare moment on it, he'd built a pond with a water feature, a decking area complete with a gas barbecue big enough for a large family instead of a single man, and his main attraction, a large hand built wooden gazebo complete with a couple of luxurious garden sofas. "So what do you think?"
Grace's eyes widened as she walked into the garden, "bloody hell Boyd, have you won the lottery and not told me."
"I wanted it nice for the summer, and to be honest I could afford it, what's the point in having a fortune in the bank, you can't take it with you."
"It's amazing, really bloody beautiful."
"I'm glad you like it, are you hungry?"
"Yeah, a little."
"I have some chicken I can throw on the Barbie."
Grace raised her eyebrows at him, "throw it on the Barbie."
"Absolutely Grace, I have all mod cons."
"So I can see." She held his gaze a little longer than would normally be considered comfortable. "Why are you so determined not to go to the award ceremony?" Her voice stayed calm and almost monotone.
He shook his head before speaking, "I don't want to talk about this Grace, I've said all I have to say on the matter."
"I think there's more to it than you've said, and I think we should talk about it"
"There's nothing more to it, it's nothing more than a Met publicity stunt and I don't want to be part of it."
"Why don't you want to go?"
"Do you need to get your hearing tested, I've just told you."
"No I don't, I just know you well enough to know when you're keeping something from me."
"For fucks sake Grace you're like a dog with a sodding bone, why can't you just accept my answer and leave it at that?"
"Because I don't believe you're being honest with me."
"If this is all you want to talk about then I think you should leave."
"Alright, I'll leave it alone, for now, but I'm not letting it go."
"It's my decision Grace, and it's a decision I've made, end of subject."
Grace gave him a look that he knew only too well, a look that said no way in a million years was she going to give up on him, but it at least bought him a bit of respite from the subject.
"So who did all the work out here then?"
"Who do you think?"
"You did it all yourself?"
"There's no need to sound so surprised."
"Well, you're not usually the creative type are you?"
"I have my moments."
"Clearly, I'll have to get you to come around and do mine."
"Ha! I think one big project per year is about my limit."
"Put me down for next year then."
"So you like it?"
"It's fabulous, I see me coming around a lot more this summer."
"God I hope so." His reply was spontaneous and she could instantly see the slightly uncomfortable look on his face at the realisation that he hadn't just thought it, but had spoken it. He maintained eye contact, her soft features starting to flush slightly under the constant scrutiny of his gaze, "do you ever think about it?" He asked quietly.
"For god's sake Boyd you could have died; of course I think about it, it was one of the longest hours of my life."
"I don't mean that."
"I meant what happened after that, in my office, when we…"
"No I don't think about it, do you?"
"I think about it all the time, I can hardly get it out of my mind."
"You make it sound like the romance of the century, it was a stupid drunken kiss, nothing more, it lasted seconds and caused weeks of awkwardness."
"I didn't feel awkward."
"Well I did, I wanted the ground to open up and swallow me."
"I felt something Grace, on that night, and I'm not talking about your tongue, although as I recall I did feel that too."
"Why are you bringing this up now, it was months ago."
"Because I want to do it again."
"I said I want to do it again."
"Yeah, I heard the words; I was just hoping I misunderstood them."
"Kiss me Grace."
"Why not, it was you who made the first move last time."
"This is ridiculous; I can't believe we're even talking about this."
"Why shouldn't we be?"
"Because we're grown-ups, not a couple of soppy teenagers."
"That's even more of a reason to discuss it, isn't it?"
"I just don't get it, it was months ago and you haven't said a word about it since that night, why all of a sudden."
"Kiss me Grace, please?"
"Don't beg Boyd, it doesn't suit you."
"I'm serious Grace."
"Why don't you put the umm, the barbecue on." She replied using her hand to indicate what she meant.
Boyd leant forward and used the back of his hand to gently caress her face, she tried to resist encouraging him, but she automatically tilted her head so she was leaning into his touch, her eyes closed and she couldn't ignore the warmth that was spreading inside of her with every feel of his hand. She looked up at him as he spoke again. "Are you going to kiss me?"
She didn't need to answer him, she leant forward with a mixture of apprehension and excitement pooling in her stomach, the moment their lips touched it was like an electrical charge. It was just a kiss, a simple touch of her lips against his, it was nothing and it was everything. It was the softness of her skin against the abrasion of his goatee; the innocence of a first kiss with the guilt of secret lovers, it was her and it was him, it was nothing and it was everything. Grace pulled away slowly, gently holding onto his lower lip with her mouth as she pulled away, he tugged on her hand and pulled her closer to him, she rested her head on his shoulder and he placed his arm around her back, and so they remained for the rest of the evening, sometimes talking sometimes just lulling into a very comfortable silence, listening to the gentle sounds of a warm summers evening in an English garden.
It was 9pm when Grace stretched and sat up, the table in front of them was strewn with empty plates, glasses and wine bottles. "I think I'd better get a taxi." This time Boyd kissed her, and this time it was more, the innocence had gone and only the passion remained. His tongue flicked over hers as it probed the soft depths of her mouth, and hers responded in the same way.
He pulled away, his eyes dark and serious, "stay."
"Stay with me, here tonight."
Grace hesitated, "I can't."
He closes his eyes briefly, "I'm sorry, it's too soon, I shouldn't have asked, forgive me?"
"There's nothing to forgive, it's just, I don't have anything with me, to stay overnight I mean."
"You mean that's the only thing stopping you?"
"What did you think I meant?"
"I thought you wanted to wait, before we slept together I mean."
Grace smiled at him, "I'm a big girl Boyd, it's not like I've never done it before, just not with you."
"Well if that's all that's stopping you, I have a new toothbrush and spare shirt."
Grace woke to the feeling of the bed moving next to her, she could see by the darkness that filled the room that it was still very early; Boyd was sat up in bed, his head resting against the wall behind the metal bedstead frame. She rolled onto her side carefully pulling the cotton sheet around herself, causing him to smile a little.
"What's funny?" She asked him.
"You've spent the last couple of hours sleeping naked in my arms, yet you still feel the need to cover yourself up with a sheet."
She smiled at him, "force of habit I guess." She rubbed her hand affectionately over his thigh. "Are you okay?"
"I'm very well thanks."
"Good." He leant over and kissed her softly.
"What's wrong?" She again asked him.
"Nothing, I told you I'm fine."
"It's 3am and you're sat up in bed wide awake, it doesn't sound like someone with nothing on his mind."
"Why did you do it?"
"What, sleep with you?"
"No, kiss me."
"Because you asked me to."
"No, not tonight, last time, the first time I mean, was it the wine?"
Grace let out a long slow breath, "I think the alcohol gave me the courage, but overall I think it was just the relief."
"Yes relief, I spent over an hour Boyd, watching you on a monitor, wondering if I'd ever get the chance to speak to you again, if I'd ever get the chance to tell you how I felt about you."
"But you never told me anything, you just kissed me and ran off and never spoke about it again."
"I was embarrassed, I wanted to tell you, but I just seemed to clam up, running off was easier."
"So what was it you wanted to say?"
"That I cared about you, cared about you more than a friend cares for another friend, that I'd never felt fear like the fear I felt that day, that when it was over all I wanted to do was throw my arms around you and hold you, and to feel you holding me back."
"You soppy old sod." He replied with a little chuckle.
"Guilty as charged, Detective Superintendent." She replied with a smile
"Can I ask you something?"
"Is it about the ceremony?"
"What went through your mind, when it happened I mean."
"Everything, nothing, I didn't think, not really, I just acted. All I could see was a room full of children and a man with a detonator."
"That would explain it then."
"Why you did what you did."
"I did what anyone would have done; I prevented a man from harming a group of children."
"No, most people would have got help, they would not have wrestled that man to the floor and then hold his thumb on the detonator for over an hour, until the explosives could be made safe."
"Why wouldn't they?"
"Because it was unbelievably stupid and dangerous, and the bravest thing I've ever heard of."
"Am I your hero then?"
"You were always my hero, you didn't have to do something stupidly dangerous and life threatening to gain that status."
"Why am I your hero?"
"Because you are who you are, you do a job that everyday carries the reminders of what you've lost, yet you still do it, you strive to give people what you never got, and can never have, and you do it with a passion that I've never seen before. You care about people, and about justice and you try and give people the answers that no one else could give them, and you're bloody good at it."
"Hi praise indeed Doctor Foley."
"It's not praise, it's the truth. It's what I see when I look at you, and I'll happily wake up looking at you for the rest of my days."
"Will you come with me?"
"To the award ceremony."
"You want me to come with you."
"Yes." He sighed deeply before continuing to talk. "Those bloody things are always full of people with their families, wives, kids, parents, etcetera, etcetera, I don't want to go alone."
"That's why you don't want to go."
"Yep, I'm Billy no mates, plain and simple."
"I was always planning to come with you."
"Yes really. I think you're bloody amazing."
"You're not so bad yourself you know."
"Why thank you, now can we go to bloody sleep."
The chief constable cleared his throat before making the final and mort prestigous award of the evening. "On the 4th of February this year, whilst investigating the unsolved case of a murdered child, DSI Peter Boyd and DI Spencer Jordan had cause to visit St Marks infant school, during that visit estranged parent Anton Collins also entered the school, his aim was to blow himself and his two children up, using a bomb that he had strapped to his body. Mr Collins had his thumb on a detonator that would explode if he let go of it, he found his youngest son Daniel, but then ran into DSI Boyd, who on noticing his agitated state decided to investigate further. Mr Collins then walked into the classroom of his eldest son James, who was in a class with 28 other children, DSI Boyd caught sight of the detonator in Mr Collins hand, he took immediate action, he ran at Mr Collins, immediately placing his hand over Mr Collins' hand forcing him to keep his thumb on the detonator, he sent the children out of the room, and then remained with Mr Collins in the same position, until the bomb could be made safe by bomb disposal officers. At no time during the incident did he give any thought to his own safety, despite the fact that he was facing certain death if the bomb exploded. Now those of you who know DSI Boyd will know that he is a reckless so and so, but his actions on this day saved the lives of at least 30 children and others at the school and in honour of this I am proud to be able to award him the highest civilian medal, the George cross."
Grace turned and kissed him as his name was called out to go and receive his award, and much to his surprise he was far from alone on that day, the entire CCU team had requested invites, and they all cheered and clapped as he collected his medal. Celebrations went on till late into the night, although Boyd wouldn't know that, being as he and Grace left early, nudge nudge, wink, wink!