Author's Notes - This is not a normal Jane/Maura story, as you will see in this chapter. There will be flashbacks (in italics), but the story doesn't not revolve around these two characters. PAY ATTENTION TO POV. There will be two different POV's throughout the story; Jane & Jackie (a character I created, as well as Karen, her partner). You may hate me after reading this chapter, but I promise it'll be easier if you stick with me to the end. Reviews and comments help. I started this four years ago, and I'm just now picking it back up again. ~ Me

(Jane's POV)

As I walk in the room, all I see is black. Black hats, black shoes, black clothes. I know people are staring at me, but I can't look them in the eye. To do that means tears falling, ever falling. I can't allow tears anymore. They reveal too much vulnerability. I find a spot in the corner, away from the mingling crowd. This visitation isn't for my benefit, but for the actual family. Her adopted parents stand on the other end of the room, talking to our colleagues. To the untrained eye, it seems the parents are intrigued by the conversation, hearing what our colleagues are saying about her. To my trained detective eye that knows the real story, they can't care less. They never knew their daughter like we did. They would never fully comprehend what she meant to us. Every minute of every day, she was a bright spot in the room. To them, she was just another person in the house they rarely frequented. Another mouth to feed at the table they never used. Having enough of the torment, sure that I had fulfilled my duty to make my presence known, I turn to leave the room.


Really? Couldn't people see I needed to be left alone? I turn around to see Korsak heading my direction. After giving him a small smile, I usher for him to follow me out of the room.

As we head outside, Vince puts his hand on my arm, stopping me in my tracks. "Hey, are you okay?"

I stare off into the night, the headlights on the freeway keeping my attention. "Define okay. I just lost the person that's most important to me, other than my family. And even then, I think she surpassed some of them. I would have laid my life down for her. It should've been me in there, not her!"

Korsak puts a hand on my shoulder, offering his for me to crumble. Not being able to hold it in anymore, I turn and sob into his jacket. How will I ever survive without her? My whole life, world even, seems completely empty without her laughter in the air.

After a while of letting me cry, Korsak gently leads me to his car. "C'mon, Jane. Let's get you home."

On the drive home, I thought I was finally past the point of crying any more. Little did I know, walking into my apartment was going to prove that there really is no end to tears. On the walk up to the door, I feel like I'm in a fog. My mind stuck in limbo, between the past memories and trying to make sense of what has happened in the last few days. I think my mind is becoming overwhelmed with the effort of attempting to explain the unexplainable.

My plan is to walk in the door, take off what was absolutely necessary before falling into bed. The only thought that makes me feel better is that tomorrow could be no worse than the last three days.

As I unlock my door, my thoughts were on bed. Within two seconds of opening my door, tears are threatening to spill over again. The first sensation is the smell of Maura's perfume. Memories flash through my head of her getting ready for work like any other day.

"Maura, where's my ..." I asked as I frantically looked in all my spots.

"In the closet. I put it away for you when I saw it thrown on the couch." Maura said from the bathroom, as she put on her makeup.

"Thanks, babe. What would I do without you?" I said with a wink as I grab my shirt from the closet.

"Probably live in a pigsty." Maura said matter of factually.

Though the memory almost brings a smile to my face, tears sting my eyes, knowing she's gone. I'm afraid to step farther into my apartment. The sheer number of things that make me think of her are enormous. I take a second to collect myself, trying to stop the tears from escaping. Taking a deep breath, I walk in.

As I take my jacket off and put it away by habit, I see hers next to mine. As I run my fingers over the expensive material, a memory flashes through my mind.

Twirling in the chair in Maura's office, I finally broke down and asked, "Maur, can we go home soon?"

"Why are you in such a hurry to leave?" She said distractedly as she pecked away at her computer. "It's not even quite 5 o'clock yet."

I spared another look at the clock. I swore it is moving at the pace of a turtle. Or is it tortoise? Not sure which one moves slower. Either way, it's moving way too slow! I tried to wait patiently for my girlfriend to finish her paperwork.

"Okay, almost done. One more quick note and... Done!" No sooner were the words out of Maura's mouth than I was on my feet and dragging her towards the door. "Hey, at least give me a chance to grab my jacket!" She said with a laugh. I reached around her, threw the jacket over my shoulder and started walking towards the door.

As we reached the car, she asked "Are you going to tell me what this is all about? I'm really curious."

"Nope, sure not. Surprises are kind of ruined, if you know about them beforehand."

As we headed back to the apartment, I started drumming my fingers to the beat in my head. "Jane, stop that! It makes me nervous." A smirk formed on my lips as I started drumming to a slower beat.

As we walked into our home together, I dropped everything and started leading Maura into the bedroom. "Isn't it a little early for that? I mean, we just walked in the door." I put a finger on her lips to quiet her, and continued to lead her down the hall. I paused for dramatic effect before opening the door. As I led her through the door, her eyes adjusted quickly to the box on the bed containing the jacket. She looked at me curiously and opened it.

"Jane!" She said in a gasping breath. "Jane, you shouldn't have! This must have cost you a fortune! What... why... how?"

I turned her to face me, placing both hands on either side of her face, give her a long kiss. "This, my dear, is a present. The present is for no reason at all except that I love you more than life itself. How? Well, that I'll just keep to myself."

It wasn't often I would surprise the love of my life. That was usually her doing, not mine. The one of the times I surprised her the most was when I bought her this coat. She wore it for days after that, never wanting to take it off. Even when she did finally take it off, I would catch her running her hands over the material.

Taking a deep breath, I close the closet. Walking through the living room, my eyes catch a glimpse of the couch. The big pillow mocks me, laughs silently at me. So many nights, so many hours of sitting on the couch together, cuddling while watching television.

With tears stinging my eyes yet again, I continue towards the bedroom. All I need is sweet unconsciousness to forget the horrors. I quickly walk through the hallway, past the pictures of us on the walls. I try to ignore them, knowing I couldn't handle that yet. Opening the bedroom door, I see her glasses on her end table, along with her latest book of choice with a bookmark in it. Her shoes all nicely lined up along the wall for easy picking. Finally, I collapse in bed. I just want this pain to end. I want to wake up from this horrible dream. I hug her pillow, tears finally escaping as her scent fills my nostrils. Weeping until I couldn't breathe, until my eyes hurt from the salt in my tears, I feel like I could sleep for months. My body finally screams for mercy as I slip into unconsciousness.