My 600th story. I finally felt like addressing the whole debacle that was Chris/Elliot's sudden and unexplained departure, and this is what I came up with. Enjoy.
Disclaimer: Not mine!
Elliot Stabler sighed as he stepped into the mini-mart. He hadn't been in this part of Manhattan in almost three years, and with good reason. After shooting a teenage girl and taking her life, he had fallen apart entirely. Eventually he resigned from the squad without even saying goodbye to the woman who had been his partner and best friend for over thirteen years. Olivia. Just the thought of her and the way he had handled things broke his heart all over again. How could he have been so stupid? How could he have just abandoned her like that, when he had sworn that he would never hurt her that way?
The florescent lights overhead made his head pound. He had not seen Olivia since then, mostly due to the fact that Kathy had urged him to quit, or at least transfer to another department. She had done that many times, but after shooting that girl, he finally gave in to her request. He wanted to keep his family together and give himself a fresh start in the process, but at what cost? The job he loved? His best friend, the woman who knew him better than anyone else in the entire world? He had not so much as called or even sent a letter to her, and it was killing him. How could he have been so cold?
Making his way down the aisles, he dropped items into the basket he had picked up at the front of the store. That decision had only lasted for so long. He had tried so very hard to make things work with Kathy. She was the mother of his children, his first love, and she meant more to him than she would ever know. But in the end, it still wasn't enough. And he couldn't go crawling back to Olivia again, not after all the times she had picked up the pieces after he split from Kathy. And especially not after disappearing completely from her life. He wasn't sure he could ever make that right with her.
Caught up in his own thoughts, he didn't notice the woman who stood with her back to him until he ran into her. "Oh, I'm sorry…"
The words died on his lips as the woman turned around and familiar brown eyes stared up at him in shock and disbelief.
Stunned, he took a step backward and took her in. Three years had added a few more lines to her beautiful face, but she was still the same.
Except now, she had a child on her hip.
Brushing her hair out of her face, Olivia did her best to smile. "Hi…" Was he really there in front of her? She hadn't seen or heard from him in almost three years, and suddenly there he was, in the flesh and so close that she could smell his aftershave. Instinctively she adjusted her little daughter on her hip.
"Hey…" He shifted uncomfortably, completely lost for words. Obviously she had moved on; could he blame her? Did he really expect her to wait forever for him? Maybe some small part of him did, but it wasn't right or realistic. She deserved to be happy, too.
They stood there, staring at each other for the longest time, until Olivia finally moved.
"It was nice seeing you, Elliot. But I have to get Molly home."
"Molly," he whispered.
Olivia nodded. "Her name is Molly Grace."
Elliot couldn't help but quickly calculate how old Molly must have been. It couldn't be… "Beautiful," he managed weakly.
"Thank you." Olivia kissed her daughter's head. "Goodbye, Elliot."
She shook her head sadly and turned around, taking Molly with her. Molly peered over her mother's shoulder, at the man they were leaving behind, and Elliot felt his heart sink.
She had his eyes.
A/N: Thank you all for reading. I'm not sure when I'll return to the SVU fandom again, but I'll try not to stay away too long. Please review and let me know what you thought of this. Happy reading.