A/N: Trick or treat...not just asking for candy anymore.
DISCLAIMER: Dick Wolf owns SVU and the characters; TStabler© owns the story you're about to read.
"Dad, please?" Kathleen, in a torn blue and white dress, begged. Her zombie makeup made her look even more annoyed.
"Nope," Elliot said firmly, shaking his head. "You wanna complain that the plans we had for Halloween were lame, now you have to deal with me following you around all night."
Dickie, the oldest boy in the family, took off his football helmet. "We said going to some stupid cop party with you and Liv would be lame. Sue us for not wanting to spend the whole night with our dad and his girlfriend and fifty other old people."
"Old?" Elliot said, raising his eyebrows.
Kathleen sighed. "You know what he meant."
"Why do you have to stay with us?" Lizzie asked, pushing her glasses further up on her nose and brushing her pink hair out of her face. "Can't you wait in the car or something? This is so embarrassing!" She fluttered her winds in irritation.
Elliot laughed. "Because it's Halloween, three of you are under eighteen, and I'm a cop. That's why."
"So, wait, you're patrolling while taking us trick or treating?" Dickie fumed. "Lame dad. So lame."
Elliot chuckled again. "Yeah, we'll see who's lame when you ring the next bell."
Maureen, her red and yellow cape blowing in the wind, rolled her eyes. "Do we even really need to ring it? You have a copy of the card key."
"Humor me," Elliot said dryly, lifting his youngest child into his arms.
Dickie slapped his helmet back onto his head. "Why do we even have to come here? Not like we won't see her later."
Elliot smiled. "She wants to see you guys all dressed up."
"She should have just stayed instead of leaving at three in the morning then," Kathleen mumbled under her breath.
"Excuse me?" Elliot barked.
Kathleen sighed and shook her head. "Nothing."
"Dad, no one's answering." Maureen shielded her eyes as she peered through the glass. "I don't see any lights on. At all. No one's inside."
"I don't see Carl anywhere," Kathleen said, folding her arms, wondering where the pleasant doorman could be.
Elliot's eyes narrowed as he shifted Eli to his other hip. "You sure?" he questioned, digging his cell phone out of his pocket.
"Dad, something's not right in there," Maureen said, suddenly scared. "I see smoke."
"Take him," Elliot said, dropping Eli into Kathleen's open arms as he shoved around in his pocket again for the card key to the door. He swiped it fast and pushed the door open, instantly facing a blast of thick smoke.
The kids followed their father into the lobby of the small apartment building, waving the smoke out of their eyes and coughing.
"Someone threw a cigarette into the bin," Elliot said, coughing. "Nothing to worry about."
Maureen shook her head. "Doesn't explain where everyone is, Dad, does it?"
"Dad?" Lizzie asked, trying to breathe, "What about Liv? We should go up and..."
"Yeah," Elliot said, nodding. "Stay close." He readied one hand over his gun as he led his troop of five through the doors to the staircase.
"Oh, my God!" Maureen gasped. "Dad, is that...blood?"
Elliot turned, seeing what his daughter was staring at. He slowly ran a finger through the red goo that smeared along the wall, then rubbed his thumb and stained finger together. "Yeah," he whispered. "Yeah, it is. Stay behind me." He turned his eyes upward, starting to climb the stairs, and he yelled, "Liv?"
As they passed the second floor landing, they heard a scream, making them all jump. They heard the sound of a chainsaw revving and another scream, then Elliot picked up his speed, taking the stairs two at a time before bursting through the fourth floor entrance.
"I d-d-don't think we should b-b-be here," Dickie stammered, one hand clutching his fathers jacket and the other unconsciously holding his twin sister's wrist.
Elliot tried to hide the smirk on his face as he looked down the hall. "You scared?"
Dickie swallowed, hard, and nodded, oblivious to the fact his father couldn't see him do it. "Let's just get Liv and get out of here."
"Carl went crazy, didn't he, Daddy?" Lizzie asked, scooting closer to her brother. "That's why Liv never came back. Carl chopped her into tiny pieces and fed her to his dogs."
Stopping them in front of Olivia's door, Elliot turned, an eerie and unfamiliar look in his eyes, and he asked, "What if it wasn't Carl that went crazy?"
"Dad?" Kathleen cradled her baby brother tightly and backed away from her father. She backed right into someone behind her, someone who grabbed both of her shoulders, making her scream.
Maureen, Dickie, and Lizzie screamed in reaction to their sister's cry, their hands and arms flailing in all directions. But through it all, the sound of laughter broke.
Kathleen was the first to quiet and look around, her heavy breathing and pounding heart still making her shake. "Liv? You...you're okay?" She realized Olivia was laughing, then she turned, seeing her father hunched over in a fit of chuckles himself. "What the hell is wrong with you two?"
Elliot, laughing hysterically, pointed a finger. "You...you guys...you should have seen your faces!"
Olivia, her hands still on Kathleen's shoulders, tried to stop laughing enough to say, "I've never seen you all panic like that before." She took a deep breath and pulled a small walkie-talkie out of the pocket of her long, black, velvet dress. "All right, Carl, you can power it up. We got 'em."
The kids all blinked and rubbed their eyes when the lights came on, flooding the hallway and making everything bright white.
Dickie, still panting, looked up and down the hall. All of Olivia's neighbors were standing in their doorways, grinning. "Wait! You set us up?"
"This was...that was..." Lizzie shook her head and tried to steady her legs.
Elliot tapped his youngest daughter's nose. "Never...ever...tell your old man he makes Halloween lame again."
Maureen was stunned, her hand over her heart. "Dad, seriously, not cool. We thought something happened to Liv! That was..."
"The best haunted house ever!" Dickie yelled, his face breaking into a grin.
Kathleen looked down at her littlest brother, his little baseball cap lopsided and floppy. "He's the only one who doesn't look scared."
Olivia smiled brightly as she lifted him into her arms. "Because Daddy told Eli what was gonna happen, didn't he? Yes, he did!" She rubbed the tot's nose with hers and walked over to Elliot, who pulled her into his arms.
"Okay, one heart-attack per night, thanks," Kathleen said, grimacing as she turned her head away from the sight of her father and Olivia kissing.
Lizzie simply laughed. "Dad, I gotta hand it to ya, that was pretty cool."
"How did you get your whole building to go along with this?" Maureen asked, folding her arms over her Supergirl S.
Olivia gave Elliot another soft peck on the lips before answering. "Carl loves you guys, but he thought you deserved a good scare," she said. "And it wasn't the whole building. Just the lobby and my floor, and it was easy to tell people to stay away from the stairs."
"Your neighbors are so uncool," Dickie said, one last chill running through him. "Agreeing to scare little kids half out of their minds like that."
"Yeah, well," Elliot said, running his hand up and down Olivia's back, "Eli's the only little kid here and he's just fine."
Maureen laughed. "He was in on it!"
Elliot leaned over and kissed each of his kids on the forehead, then picked Eli up out of Olivia's arms and handed him back to Kathleen. "Don't let him out of your sight," he ordered. "I'm trusting you."
Dickie squinted. "I'm confused."
"We just wanted to prove that you could have the scare of a lifetime with your 'old' father and his girlfriend," Elliot said, slapping the teen's helmet. "We have a party to go to. Listen to me, stay in the neighborhood, don't go anywhere you aren't familiar with, and you all need to be home by ten." He pointed to Eli. "I expect him washed, fed, and in bed when I get home. You understand?"
Olivia noticed the looks being exchanged among the kids and how they were all nervously biting their lips. "Okay," she said, leaning against Elliot as he wrapped an arm around her shoulders. "What's the problem? We thought you wanted to go out by yourselves."
"We did," Maureen shrugged. "But..."
"Can we come to your party?" Lizzie interrupted. "Not that we're too scared to be alone now, or anything, but..."
Kathleen whined. "Liz, you dorkus!" She looked at her father. "It's not that. Well, it may be that, a little, but mostly it's not."
Dickie took off his helmet and looked his father in the eyes, "We think it'd be cool to hang out with our dad and his girlfriend tonight. That's all." He smiled. "They're not as old as we thought."
Elliot looked at Olivia, who gave him a smile and another kiss. "Well, how can we say no to that?"
"Guess we can't," Olivia laughed. Then she turned, taking Eli back from Kathleen once again. "Okay, gang. Back downstairs we go."
"Can we take the elevator?" Kathleen asked quickly.
Lizzie's eyes widened. "Please?"
Without waiting for an answer, the kids ran for the lift and each hit the button a few times, fast. Elliot and Olivia watched, laughing, and then looked at each other. "For the record," Olivia said, "I never thought your Halloween plans were lame."
He leaned over and bit her earlobe, then whispered, "My plans with you, later, are absolutely terrifying."
A smirk spread across her face as his words sunk in. She kissed him as they got into the elevator, and readied herself for one hell of a Halloween night.
A/N: Next: That night!