Alex breathed a sigh of relief when she heard Olivia's key in the door. She took one last deep breath hoping to hide the fear and terror she had felt for the last few days with Olivia working. Pasting a smile on her face she looked up into the brown eyes that she fell for the second she was introduced too. The look in those eyes told her everything she needed to know at that moment.
"There's a change of clothes on the bed." Alex said reaching for the book she was reading before Olivia came home "I'll have a scotch waiting for you on the chester drawers and you know where to find me when you're ready to talk."
"Thank you" Olivia mumbled as she blindly stumbled into their bedroom and stripped her clothes off and stepping into a shower so hot that it almost burned her skin. She stood underneath the water as it burned her skin trying to wash away today's events. After a few moments she grabbed the wash cloth and began to clean herself with such vengeance as if the events of the day was stuck on her skin and no matter how much she scrubbed it remained there. Once that was completed she finally allowed herself to collapse to the bottom of the shower and cried. The tears she cried wasn't for her and what she saw that. No they never were. Instead they were for the victim and what she would have to face the rest of her life.
Alex leaned back and finally allowed the tears that she held in fall from her eyes. This brief time while Olivia stood in the shower punishing her body for something that was beyond her control and scrubbing herself to the point that she would almost bleed would be the only emotion she would show. To an outsider she would probably look like the cold hearted and relentless bitch of a prosecutor that she portrayed on a daily basis. In reality she was a terrified wife of an officer who prayed for hours on end that she would hear the key in the door and see the beaten and almost broken look that she saw in her eyes.
There were very few that could live the life that she lived on a daily basis. Those that did were a breed all their own much like the officer's they loved. They agreed to a life of uncertainty, a life of canceled or postponed dates, a life with extra shifts to make ends meet or fix whatever had broken that week. In return for this though they were blessed with the love of someone who held honor, integrity, and service before self unlike any they had ever seen before. Even firemen, or hose draggers, as they were often called by the police couldn't compete with them.
In the beginning it was far from easy and extremely difficult to get accustomed to. She had to learn when to step in and when to stay away. She had to learn Olivia's body language on what she needed and what she wanted. There were times before she would finish getting ready for work she would turn those eyes up and connect with her blue ones. She knew in that instant that she needed reassurance and would be more than willingly step into the arms of the woman she loved and hold onto her for dear life. She had learned how to mask her fear from her eyes and face as Olivia strapped her badge and gun on before sliding her leather jacket on. Before she walked out of the door both staring at each other as if that was the last time they would see each other and needed to memorize everything about each other.
Then there were the nights after the cases such as the one she just finished up. Those were the nights that she wanted to stand in the shower till the water ran cold and sometimes staying in there longer not registering the temperature of the water. She would come out of the shower and drink the alcohol in one swift gulp. Enjoying the burn as it coated her insides as a manner of reminder her she was still alive. Then she would sit on the bed and be lost in thought sometimes for hours on in and other times for brief moments. These were the nights that tore at Alex's heart. These were the nights that inside she wanted to beg Olivia to transfer to another unit, something that would forever remain inside her no matter how bad it got.
Then there were nights that she would come home and immediately collapse into her arms crying so bad that her body would shake the whole couch. Alex would always hold her tight against her and let her release all she built up into her. Then that was usually followed with somewhat rough sex, not that she minded. She came to realize that it was a way for Olivia to become re-grounded and chase the demons that she was fighting away. Although afterwards Olivia would always look at her as if for seeing her for the first time since she came home and the love making that followed would bring tears to her eyes.
Then there were the nightmares. There were times that it seemed as if she never got any sleep because of the nightmares Olivia had. Sometimes they would be simple and have her crying in her sleep. Alex would roll over and pull her tight to her and even in her sleep would hold her till she fell back in a somewhat peaceful slumber. Then there were the nightmares that terrified her. The nightmares that had Olivia fighting as if her life depended on it and Alex was fairly certain that she was relieving an encounter she almost didn't survive. It was after the first nightmare when she was woken up with Olivia tightening her hands around her throat while she screamed into an imaginary radio for help that she learned to remain still and talk her out of it. When she had tried to push her off her she struck her and using the same speed and agility in her sleep that she used when she was awake had flipped her over and wrenched her arms behind her so tight she screamed out in pain. It took what seemed like hours, which was actually a few minutes, to reach Olivia in the depth of her nightmare. When she came to and registered what had happened she was so horrified that she shot out of the apartment only grabbing her service weapon and her departmental ID as she ran out.
Alex with trembling hands had called the one person she knew could reach her at times like this, Elliot Stabler, her partner. Briefly describing what happened Elliot was quickly dressed and in search of his partner while Kathy, his wife and nurse, came over to keep her company and tend to her wounds. It was then that she learned from Kathy to never move and lay perfectly still when they were relieving something to that extent. Hours later Elliot drug an exhausted and mortified Olivia home to her. What she didn't know at that time was that Elliot had found her with her weapon in her hand wanting to end it all. He had talked her down and agreed to keep it between them if she agreed to talk to someone. For days after that when the bruises darkened and became more visible she would come home to a house where Olivia was packing her things to leave her. To scared that her nightmares would cause more damage then what they already had done. It had taken a while but between Alex, Elliot, and the therapist she saw she realized that what happened was an accident and not who she was.
Also thanks to the therapist she had told Alex what had led to that nightmare. It was a remembrance of her days as a beat cop when she almost didn't make it out alive. She had walked into a domestic without her back up when suddenly the man attacked her. She was able to break his grip and place him against the wall with her hands around his neck. She had grabbed her radio and started to scream for back up when he began to beat her. She was almost unconscious when she had a last second surge of adrenaline and was able to flip him and wrenched his arms behind his back like she had done hers. The only difference though was she had broken his elbow in the process. That was also when she had discovered what had triggered that buried nightmare was earlier in the day a suspect had lunched at her and pinned her against the wall for a few seconds. Something that she didn't want to have to share with her because she didn't want her to worry any more than what she already did on a daily basis.
Then there were the questions that she asked from time to time with no rhyme or reason. One time they were preparing dinner together when she asked her who she wanted to notify her in case she was killed in the line of duty. That wasn't a question that she wanted to answer much less consider but knew she had too. After a few minutes of thought she told her Fin, Munch, and Cragen in that order preferably. She was shocked as to why not Elliot and that had to be the easiest thing she could answer. She knew Elliot would be with her every step of the way and wouldn't leave her side. Olivia took the answer to heart and continued to fix dinner as if nothing had ever been asked.
There were other times where they were walking through a store or down the side walk when she would stop suddenly and look at her and rattle something off. Sometimes it would be something as simple as I want to be buried in my dress blues to do you know where I keep all the passwords at for the bills. Each time Alex would smile pull her close to her and hold her while whispering in her ear that she would make sure her requests were met and honored if something should happen to her. Thankfully as the years went on this became less and less of an occurrence for them.
Hearing the creaking of the bed Alex sat her book down and went about straightening the living room up. Once that was completed she walked in and took the glass from Olivia's hand and placed it in the kitchen sink. Taking a few deep breaths to steady herself she walked back to the bedroom door and leaned against it waiting for Olivia to acknowledge her. She stood their till those brown eyes came to life when they connected with hers and the smile that made her heart skip a beat crossed her face.
"It was so bad this time" Olivia started to say in a voice that neither of them recgonized. Then and only then did she enter the bedroom and hold her officer and offer her comfort the best that only she could.
As she laid there listening to the steady deep breaths coming from Olivia she realized that this life wasn't for everyone but it was definitely the life for her. As she did each night before she drifted off to sleep she thank god for one more day wth Olivia and prayed that there were many more to come.
A/N: I'm not going to lie being an officer is hard but an officer's wife is even harder. They have to deal with the aftermath of what we endure on a daily basis. The demons of the night that we fight relentlessly and the distance almost withdrawn attitude we have. We are taught to compartmentalize and hide our emotions. Emotions are weakness and used against you in the battle for your life. Because of this we have one of the highest divorce rates there is. Not everyone can handle being an Officer's wife. Those that do are special angels sent from the heavens above to watch out for the guardians of the streets.