/A MATTER OF PERSPECTIVE/
Summary: Sharon Raydor was around before red tape and Flynn's well-acquainted with her. Stories from the good ol' days, late season one of the closer and onwards.
"You're being a mean-spirited asshole, aren't you?" There was no mistaking that voice or the attenuation on the word asshole; Andrew Flynn turned around, his body leaning casually against the vending machine, a tongue in cheek smile on his lips as he watched none other than Sharon Raydor approach him, hand on one hip and a quirky smile Andy was rather fascinated with.
"What – in general or specifically now in this moment?" he gave her an insolent smile.
She barked a short laugh, the one that he took to mean she found him partly amusing, partly obnoxious, "More mean-spirited than usual overall, I should say. Spiteful down to a tee."
"You've got spite – I don't hear anyone complaining," he pointed his toothpick at her, enjoying the little narrowed look she directed at it. Andy paused for effect and then with a drawl, "oh wait, yes there's the ruckus – everyone's complaining."
She rolled her eyes, "You're an ass."
"You know it," he waggled his eyebrows.
Her smile stayed on, eyes fixed on him with a slight patronizing stare.
Andy gave a nonchalant shrug, "Who's complaining?" he put his toothpick back in his mouth, moving it from one corner of his mouth to the other, looking through his wallet and pretending not to be bothered by her presence.
"Every single soul who's been in the near vicinity of you lately, lieutenant," he could hear the contained laughter in her voice, clear in the resonance.
He spread his hands out, a dollar bill in one hand, "Sorry honey, that's old news."
She tilted her head, a sly little smile upon her face now, "I cannot – and I stress this – turn a corner without someone complaining about what an – and this is from memory I quote – an self-important, little ignorant fuck you are, in desperate need of a good whack in, well, you get the gist," she raised a delicate eyebrow, standing close to him, arms crossed and a small grin at the corner of her mouth as she leaned against the corner of the vending machine.
Andy slid the dollar into the machine, punching the numbers for a cola. He pursed his lips when he gave her a look sideways, watching her up close. She was always a sight to behold – even when he would rather curse her existence. She had a unique knack for inspiring an inimical spark in many an officer; she sparked something else in him, that playful look of deviousness and the way she could dispense away with sardonic replies.
Andy blew air out of his mouth, feigning impatience flat out, "Oh blow me – when did we start taking in overly sensitive, hysterical rookies. I tell you, I miss the good old days," he took the can out of the machine, opening it and taking a slurp with an ungodly loud sip; just to annoy her,
"The good old days, ah, remember them? "
Her eyebrow rose even higher - if that was possible at all – and he knew that little tilt to the left side with her head was a direct sign she was either pissed or amused, possible both emotions in a concoction he had no clue what to do with. She was an ambivalent force both within her own right and within her capacity in the building.
She shook her head, small miniscule shakes back and forth, eyes on him with a narrowed look, "It's not the whelps complaining, it's the seniors."
That shut him up.
Her smile widened, "Ahhh, that caught your attention."
Andy shifted his toothpick and then offered her a sip of his cola.
She took the beverage right out of his hand, sipping with a sly look from out under her lashes.
"The only senior I can think of – and mind you I say senior with the utmost respect," she hummed in mock-sincerity and he continued, voice filled to the brim with sarcasm, "is one very accented Miss Atlanta."
She pursed her lips, "and a few others. It's nothing official – just the grapevine going up a volume, you know how it is. It's just that you have an unparalleled talent for pissing the wrong people off – and they tend to gripe about you in the break rooms."
"And you tend to stand around eavesdropping in break rooms?" he teased her, catching the small little twitch of the left side of her mouth; she shook her head again, this time amused.
"So I should consider myself warned? Huh? A little special warning from my dear friend in the rat squad?"
Her smile went from ear-to-ear then and he knew when she resorted to her Cheshire smile she was finding everything to be working in her favor – which most of the time meant things were incidentally not working in his favor; he sighed.
Her smile stayed wide, "Ordinarily, yes. Though, I must confess I am more concerned with the fact that you've yet to ask whether I want the sour cream and onion chips or not," she tilted her head and looked to the mentioned snack in the vending machine with a little pout.
Andy rolled his eyes, popping in another dollar and punching the numbers for the small bag of chips with more force than necessary. He made a show out of opening it up for her, holding the little plastic bag for her so she could reach in.
She tried to contain her smile but it was vivid in her whole face, "Pompous ass," she smiled around the potato chips and he grinned.
Andy popped a handful of chips into his own mouth.
"So, the reason for your recent descent into prickliness is?" she asked around munching on chips, sipping his cola as well; looking smug in every meaning of the word.
"Descent," he tasted the word with a smirk, "why, you'd know a thing or two about descending, huh. I'd imagine hell's hot this time of the year."
She rolled her eyes, "Yeees, I've caught the elevator from Satan's lair – now spit it out; what's wrong?"
He shrugged, "Nothing."
"Oh honey, pouting does not become you," she patted his biceps, moving away from the vending machine so he was forced to follow; he watched her look around the corner of the corridor, smiling when she saw it was empty and devoid of other officers, "You staying sober?"
"You would be the first to know if I fell off, Captain," he told her, sincerity in his words even if he crossed his arms and directed a glare her way. She ignored his glare – she always did.
"I've got to ask – you know that."
"I'm committed – and you know that."
She smiled – gently this time and he knew she was just looking out for him in her own strange way. She was after all the reason he was still in the force and had not been thrown out on his ass years back; Sharon Raydor believed in second chances and for that he was grateful.
"How's Jack?" he asked and instantly her smile became distorted, cold within a second.
"Jack likes to surround himself with people who are not aware of his many," she paused, eyes cold as well, "flaws."
"Oh," Andy nodded, he understood the veiled information; Jack had gone on one of his hideouts, drowning in darkness and addiction somewhere.
"I haven't seen him in the group for a long time," Andy explained.
She merely hummed dismissively.
He sighed, he knew she wouldn't elaborate or talk more on the subject; she never wanted to discuss it with him and he understood it – respected it. Instead he decided to tell her what had been bothering him; "The new hierarchy, that's was wrong. I don't care much for the whole new setting in this building; let's just leave it at that."
"You and Taylor both – it's like a regular kindergarten around here. I bet you, if Miss Atlanta was a Mr we wouldn't be having this discussion at all," she huffed, crossing her arms. Her eyes became almost grey steel.
He grunted, "Hell, that's not the problem – I would abhor a Mr Atlanta with equal fervor," he paused, gauging her continued look of disbelief – better change the subject he thought, "Now Taylor; there's the guy you really should be asking – he's more torn up about it than I am. I'm just helping the poor guy out, following directions, nothing more than that."
She quirked an eyebrow, giving him a look that clearly stated she thought he was full of bullshit, "So you're just the grunt-boy, huh. Just doing all the menial work for your boss?"
He smiled around his toothpick, a small wink at her.
"Taylor's an idiot," she told him, giving him back his cola and taking the bag of chips from his hands instead.
"We're all idiots – isn't that why you abhor working with us? Isn't that why you prefer Satan's lair?"
"Just key it down – count to ten and make everyone's day a happy one."
"Nah, sorry – I've got a compulsory need to be a pain in the ass."
"Don't you ever – however, consider yourself warned. No more going behind everyone's back, Andy, no more trying to undermine your superiors. It'll only backfire, okay?"
He shrugged and she smiled in return, her lips back to the sly look she had perfected to mean a variety of different things.
Andy leaned closer, and then with a low tone, "I could show you mean-spirited if you want?"
She leaned in conspiratorially, a dangerous glint in her eyes, "You'll only get burnt darling."
"What – Satan doesn't like sharing?"
"Indeed he doesn't."
They smiled widely at each other, standing a little closer than what was usual. She leaned back first and then depositing the half empty bag of chips into his arms, she turned on the spot, "Thank you for the meet-and-chips, lieutenant – do carry on."
He saluted her, watching as she walked away with a little strut. He shook his head, lips parted in a smile.
Andrew Flynn slinked into the squadroom of Robbery and Homicide, catching Taylor just as he looked up from a conversation with a uniform.
"Internal Affairs sniffing around," Andy said by way of greeting when the uniform left the room, his toothpick firmly at the corner of his mouth as he spoke.
Taylor approached him with a sour expression, "I know - I've already gotten the kick in the nuts from the Pope."
Andy shook his head, "Well, what'da ya know."
Taylor stood next to him, crossed arms and a look in his eyes that Andy knew was a mix between disappointment and fury.
"How do you know?" Taylor asked Andy.
Andy shrugged, "I shared a cordial conversation with our beloved I.A. Captain."
Taylor looked at him surprised, "She still talking to you after that whole debacle last year?"
Andy nodded, "I guess my natural charm is her weak point."
Taylor smiled, "Your natural charm kills flies, you smartass."
"You apologized, didn't you, you smug bastard?" Taylor chuckled.
Andy smiled wide, "Of course – it's Raydor we're talking about."
Taylor gave a short little laugh and then composed himself.
"Nothing official yet but I think it's a matter of treading carefully," Andy explained; Sharon looked out for him even if he was a mean-spirited asshole.
Taylor grunted, "Yeah – or maybe it's a matter of changing tactics, huh."
Andy smiled along with Taylor, agreeing with a nod.
Sharon would disagree but then she always had a more logic and diplomatic approach to life. Andrew Flynn was different in that aspect. The bitch hated his guts so why should he care if she was technically his superior; she was not even one of them – not even from LA; she had never worked a beat here. He cared little for Miss Atlanta and he did not mind undermining her; not one bit.
"You throwing yourself the requisite pity party?"
Andrew Flynn looked up from his desk, surprised when he found none other than the figure of Sharon Raydor approaching him, immaculate in a black skirt and blazer. His legs were thrown causally on the desk and his chair leaned back as he stared angrily into the black screen of a computer. He was in the middle of contemplating whether he could plea insanity for murdering Taylor or not, anger animate in his body. It melted partly the moment she came sliding into the squad room of Robbery/Homicide, her usual smile in place but with a soft edge to it.
Now, under normal circumstances he would greet her with a mutual smile but today had been a hell; he was in no mood to greet anyone amicably. "Yeah," he blew out with a snarl, "I'm being a pitiful creature here all by my lonesome."
She raised an eyebrow, her mouth twitching, "Oh, honey – you do look pitiful indeed."
He glared and crossed his arms, "You're awful – just plain awful."
She smiled, her teeth showing, not in the least moved by his attitude.
He ran a hand through his hair and in defeat he sighed, "You've gotta tell me who the fuck your informants are," he paused, judging the telltale arched eyebrow was in honor of his obscenity, "So I can deck whoever's running around blabbing left and right."
She laughed and then sat down on his desk, pushing his legs a bit to the side with a small pat to make room for her on his desk. He watched her cross one leg over the other, her head tilted fractionally as she regarded him, eyes clear.
"Heck," he sighed when she continued to simply look at him patiently, "This building's full of rats!"
Her mouth twitched again, this time he was hard pressed to determine whether she was amused or annoyed, "Are you calling me a rat, Lieutenant?" There was a sweet lilt to her voice, poisonous when it became that low timbre; he smiled to himself, enjoying being able to aggravate her to an extent.
Casually he leaned further back in his chair and regarded her with a belligerent smirk, "No at all – I'm calling all those snitches that run to internal affairs with gossip rats – you're just the handler. A gorgeous rat handler nonetheless." He made a big show out of staring at her bare legs, enjoying the little flicker of green ire he caught in the depths of her eyes when he looked up again.
She fixed him with a long stare, motionless and unblinking, as if she was either putting him on the scales and the jury was still out or maybe she was internalizing a little 'count-to-ten'; it was a curious concept to rattle her – it was seldom a visible effect, miniscule when it appeared.
"I heard you're resigning from Robbery/Homicide," she said after a brief moment of silence, her voice carefully neutral yet he caught the little tint of repressed annoyance in her eyes, the way her lips compressed together and the way she sat even more ramrod straight on his desk.
Andy nodded, his jaw aching from anger, "And where did you hear that?"
"A rat told me," she snipped, voice dry.
Andy glared at her and she glared back, her arms crossed now, lips almost on the point of being pursed. It was not her fault, he tried telling himself – it was always easy to lash out at others, especially her.
She looked away first, eyes going down and briefly fastening on her own skirt – he watched her chest fall and rise and heard the small, almost noiseless sigh that left her lips.
Andy pouted, his voice raw when he said out aloud "Someone fed me to the wolves today – made a show out of cutting me into big great chunks first."
Sharon looked up, her eyes latching onto him; he was once again uncertain how to decipher her expression. "Taylor, I presume," she said in dulcet tones.
"Oh don't be all innocent and shy – it doesn't suit you one bit. You know exactly what happened," he was just short of yelling now, a visible strain in his voice – he fidgeted on his chair, moving it closer to her.
She nodded, another silky smile, not at all encouraged by his vehemence this time, "I do."
Andy sighed – of course she knew. He looked back at the black computer screen, wondering how different it would be in another squad. "I feel like someone stabbed me in the back."
Sharon Raydor hummed, "So you've applied to Chief Johnson's squad?" she paused, eyes exclusively on him now, an inquisitive look. Her lips curled, "Can't defeat them, join them, huh?" She smiled at her own little joke and Andy rolled his eyes in concert.
Andy gave her a shrug when she tilted her head, demanding answer.
"Really?" she sounded dubious, one eye more narrowed than the other.
"I thought it was simply a rumor," she told him.
"Nope, everything's signed – I'm just sitting here trying to force myself to pack up my stuff and move it up two floors."
"You surprise me, lieutenant," she said, her fingers patting his legs again.
"Why is that?"
"You were bitching about her only last week – quiet spectacularly, if you recall."
He shrugged, "she hated my guts then – she only hates half of them by now."
She gave a short laugh.
Andy looked at her again, finding her eyes curious yet soft, "You heard about the case and everything? About Croelick?"
She nodded, "Yes."
Andy felt combative, glaring at her, "She said she wouldn't file a report against me."
"There's no complaint."
"Then why are you here?" his voice was brusque.
She shook her head, "To join your pity party," her smile was still soft – she was really the only one who ignored it when he blew a fuse or two.
"You can join all you want," Andy said around a smirk and in a swift move he caught her left foot, her heel resting on his thigh now as he held
unto the ankle.
She continued to smile but her eyes became encased in shadows, her head tilting a bit to the side as if she was observing a curious new specimen of nature.
Andy let his index finger follow the curve of her ankle, around to the instep, "I was gonna hold my pity party in bed – there's always room enough for you in my bed, especially on top."
She chuckled; eyes crinkled now, her foot curiously still in his hands.
Andy continued, pressing two fingers in under the jut of bone, on the inside of her ankle, feeling the slight pulsation there, "Heck, I'll even let
you come first – how about it?"
She sputtered now, eyes watering and her smile contagious, "You are truly unbelievable."
"Yes," he agreed with a goofy smile.
There was a brief moment of silence and Andy looked up, catching her regarding him with yet another curious tilt, "Lieutenant, what are you doing?"
Andy smiled, "Checking for a pulse."
"And what's the verdict?" her smile was soft this time.
"You're not dead," he drawled, his thumb going up her shin, fingers following in a caress.
He stared up at her, wondering when she would slap him – his hand continued –
"Ahem," someone coughed; Andy looked up and found Taylor standing with his arms crossed and a sour somewhat surprised expression on his face.
Sharon simply turned her head around, her face impassive and her polite, patient smile now on display – as if she had quite forgotten Andy was still holding her foot.
"Captain Taylor," Sharon said, her voice silk and sweet, "Would you believe it or not - but lieutenant Flynn here has been so kind as to inform me of this building's extensive rat problem."
Taylor looked confused and Andy grinned – even if he wasn't entirely following where Sharon's logic was taking her; on a little detour he imagined.
"Rat problem?" Taylor asked.
Sharon gave a shrug with a little smile, "Surprised me as well."
Taylor harrumphed and then with an annoyed look at Andy, "You still here? What, Chief Johnson sent you back?"
Andy glared, "I'm going to be well out of your hair in a second – sir."
Taylor smiled – a greasy, wan smile Andy thought.
"You here on official business, Captain Raydor?" Taylor asked her, his eyes zeroed in on her heeled foot in Andy's hand.
"No – it's quite unofficial and off duty," she merely replied, her leg dangling out of Andy's grasp – she made a graceful move out of sliding off
his desk, "I'm merely taking an afternoon stroll through the building."
Taylor narrowed his eyes suspiciously – Sharon Raydor never strolled anywhere without purpose.
Andy stood up and grabbed the brown box where he had piled all his belongings. He then followed Sharon out of Robbery/Homicide's squad room, the feeling of Taylor's eyes burning holes in his back. Andy ignored it, instead focused on the tight skirt in front of him instead – a wide plastered grin across his face; things weren't so bad.
"Stop staring at my behind, lieutenant," Sharon said over her shoulder as she strode towards the elevator.
"I'm not," Andy pouted, hiding his smile.
"Sure," Sharon said, her head turning now, her lips parted in a condescending smile.
"Whatever," Andy supplied, his own lips parting naturally.
Andrew Flynn stalked into a well-lit, warm bar that he would normally never set foot in; it was a little too bright and a little too cozy – a little too expensive. Nonetheless he strode in through the glass door, quickly zeroing in on what had drawn him to this niche of the world; Sharon Raydor off duty sitting at a circular table in the back with three I.A detectives in civilian clothing.
Making his entrance, Andy moved his obligatory toothpick to one corner of his mouth and glared menacingly at the three junior males at the table, "Well, well – if it isn't the three musketeers," he drawled, "Why don't you three scatter off – go buy yourselves a beer; I need a word with the Captain."
Three pair of eyes glared back at him, the three men crossing their arms; Sharon raised one amused eyebrow, shaking her head at his audacity. Andy merely lifted an eyebrow in return.
The three idiots turned their heads in Sharon's direction for confirmation and then when she gave a confirming nod they left the table albeit grudgingly, eyes shining with venom when they passed by Andy, the Elliot kid even going as far as pushing past Andy with a shoulder – Andy saw Sharon sigh and he grinned.
Power-plays were always something of a turn on with I.A detectives; the lower ranking ones always easy to aggravate to one extent or the other.
Andy gave the three retreating men a little mock-salute, soaking in the sparked ire he caught in Elliot's suddenly hurried, angry footsteps.
Andy sat down with a merry smile, his elbows on the table as he took in the infamous expression most of the force had come to associate with a snake baring its fangs; dangerous.
"Hello Lieutenant –why don't you just sit down without any invitation whatsoever," Sharon greeted him over the rim of a white wine glass, voice laced with sarcasm.
"Why, thank you – that's awfully gracious of you, Captain," Andy drawled back.
Sharon rolled her eyes and then took a long drawn out sip of her wine, a condescending smirk when she swallowed, her lips parting in half-annoyance, half-curiosity.
"What brings you to my part of the woods?"
Andy smiled, "I need a favor."
She turned the wine glass in her hands, the stem in between fingers – it was empty now but for a small little pool at the bottom. Her eyes took in light and there was a calculating glint in the depths, "I'm all out of favors."
Andy leaned in across the table, his lips parting from his teeth in a little snarl, "I'm asking you nicely." He pronounced each word with extra care, finding her annoyingly calm.
Her eyebrows rose considerably and an indignant laugh left her lips, "I would hate to burst your bubble, lieutenant, but you aren't capable of asking for a favor nicely. It's quite frankly beneath you – your behavior here today blatant proof of that."
Andy sighed – of course she was going to be difficult. He gritted his teeth, "Yeah – I'm a bit short on patience today – sorry."
It was her turn to sigh, "You never have a full capacity of patience, Andy," she gave a brief smile, "What do you need in such a hurry that you see it fit to come in here and order my detectives away and inflict your oh-so-delightful presence upon me?"
"I'm a delight alright."
"You sure are."
They glared at each other for a brief moment, ire in his bloodstream making it impossible to back down – out of the corner of his eyes he noticed three pair of eyes burning holes in the side of his face from across the bar; he briefly arched an eyebrow in their direction, his smile dark.
"Andy - leave them be!"
He put his hands in the air, "Sorry, sorry – it's just so easy."
She sighed again, "Yes. Now out with it before I resort to something horrible."
"Mm – what kind of horrible things are you contemplating doing to me?" he drawled, finding the little derisive smile on her lips quite animating.
"Wouldn't you like to know!"
"Mm-hmm," she hummed the tone tantalizing.
Andy shook his head, leaning closer and then in a whisper, "Can you – pretty please – order every goddamn neanderthal in my squadroom back to their own respective floors – put the fear of god in them or something, huh?"
"Half of central is crowding our murder room, angry and spiteful every last one of them – half-brained as well. I just need you to take a stroll through our murder room, bring along your little black book of death and give them an eyeful? Nothing more – just scare them off?"
"So," she drew the word out in that annoying sarcastic way she had perfected, "in a surprising turn of events, you want the whole LAPD to
hate me instead of you and your precious squad?"
He nodded eagerly, "Just long enough for us to actually do our job"
She shook her head, "No thank you."
His face fell, "Sharon."
"Lieutenant," she countered voice sweet.
"I'll buy you a whole bottle of wine," Andy wagered, giving her a winning smile.
"Hmm – of my own choosing?"
"Yeah," he nodded eagerly.
"I'm not sure your meager salary covers such an expensive favor, unfortunately," her tone was back to sweetness.
Andy pouted, "Well, how much does a goddamn bottle cost?"
She looked positively radiant now, sparkling with superiority, "I already clocked out, honey – I'm not about to brave the lion's cave again; it'll only suck me in and I'll never be able to go home then."
Andy turned his pout to a sad frown, "Oh okay."
Her smile turned suspicious.
Andy continued, feigned despondency in his voice, "I only hope I'll be able to manage my miserable capacity for patience then and that I don't end up shooting one of the idiots in the process; that would be a disaster – then whoever's on call in I.A would surely be called to the scene."
He ended it with a sigh and then with a smirk, "You're on call, aren't you?"
"I saw you checking the roster this morning, Andy Flynn, you know very well I'm on call," her voice was deadly calm now.
He smiled, "Yeah – such a shame when I end up planting my fist in someone's face – because I will!"
He watched as she waved someone away; Andy looked over his shoulder catching the Elliot kid stopping midstride and returning to the bar once again, jaw clenched tight and a set expression.
"I have no reason – legally – to stride through your squadroom to strike fear in the hearts of people simply because their presence annoys you."
"Well – can't you find some obscure rule about, oh I don't know – how many people are legally allowed in a such a small little room? Surely there's a fire hazard to consider?"
She rolled her eyes, "Yes, I can see myself trying to sell that one to the Chief and the Mayor."
"C'mon Sharon; I'm desperate here."
Her lips curled, "Sorry – you're on your own."
Andy sighed; well that was a lost battle.
She reached across the table, patting his arm – her eyes soft when he looked up, "Call me when you get off, though?"
Andy pouted, "I'll probably be working through the night."
Her head tilted, "Yes – but when you get off and everybody else goes to the little bar at the corner of ninth – stop by, I'll be up anyway. A homemade meal – I even got some of that awful cranberry juice you seem to love so much."
He nodded, "Sure – but only if you make those mean brownies you served me last time."
Andy smiled back, and then in a swift move he got up, giving her a little wave before turning and making his way out; he fixed the three idiots with a rude salute, able to imagine Sharon rolling her eyes at his antics.
/TO PROTECT AND SERVE /
"I have a hypothetical question for you." Andrew Flynn proclaimed as he stuck his head inside Sharon Raydor's office, purposefully forgetting to knock on her door to announce his presence. The room was neat and square, light and a bit too pristine; the rookies used to joke that she had a button on her desk somewhere that she could push in emergencies and the ground would then open up and suck everything into a vortexed-hell. It seemed fitting somehow to imagine the light and bright office had an underbelly of sorts; secret compartments that led to the underworld or maybe a secret niche with a broom and cauldron.
Amused Andy watched as she sat up a bit straighter in her chair, the otherwise reclining position she had been reading a report in quickly amended; her eyes turned from confusion to suspicion the moment she realized it was him.
"Oh, it's you," she said, voice low and somewhat sardonic.
"Indeed it is," Andy fired back coming further inside the office. He always enjoyed the way one side of her mouth twitched and the special way she had of appraising him with half narrowed eyes as if she found him somewhat volatile.
"Does your question even remotely resemble your last hypothetical question you deemed fit to impose on me?" she seemed to find her own question funny because she cracked a small smile, directed inwards, eyes light.
Andy rolled his eyes, "No."
"Excellent, lieutenant – because I regret," there wasn't the slightest contrite to the word regret leaving her mouth but quite the opposite, a dry gleeful tilt, "to inform you that I have no time to play referee between you and whatever pissing contest you have going with Vice today."
Andy smiled widely back at her, "No worries, Cap – that racket is long resolved, no thanks to your exceptional skills anyway. Though I must confess," she rolled her eyes and he continued feeling gleeful, "there's this idiot Brent Keith from Narcotics who's been in my face a couple of times recently; you should see the way he barrels his way through a simple breaking and entering report."
Sharon gave him a long, condescending look, "Have you by any chance had the pleasure of reading your own reports, lieutenant?"
Andy grunted, "Oh give it a rest, I do just fine report-wise."
She shook her head, "I'm still checking your grammar."
Andy shrugged, "You are bit of a nut, yeah. Never mind that – that's not why I'm here."
"Then spit it out before I run out of time," she looked at her wrist watch, "I have an appointment to dine with the Mayor in about an hour and I
need to finish these," she gave a pout to the files on her desk.
"You have a date with the Mayor," Andy sputtered for a moment completely forgetting why he'd sought her out in the first place, "You've got to be kidding me, that old prick!"
"You done?" she raised one eyebrow at him, daring him to continue his rant.
Andy corked his head to the side, a little narrowed look, "Hell, if you wanna rise and shine in the ranks – why not just ass-kiss the Chief like
you usually do? Though if it were me, I'd merely turn him around and give him a nice blow-"
Her lips compressed into a thin line, "I'm having dinner with the Mayor and a committee of politicians to discuss professional standards and the recent civil case against one of our own officers."
She sighed loudly, a bit forcefully and dramatic Andy thought, "Your hypothetical question, Andy?"
"Errm," Andy started, not sure why he had thought it was a good idea to get her input; she was going to go ballistic he thought, or even worse
she would end up arresting him. If she had an emergency button she would definitely push it.
"Yeees," she enquired impatiently, eyes narrowing.
Oh well, here goes he thought.
"If someone finds a dead body but does not report it right away but decide to – you know postpone it until a more opportune time – is that technically a crime? What are the consequences, you know hypothetically, if you're an officer of the law?"
She stared at him for a long time, her eyes widening, step by step – he would find it comical under different circumstances, the look of outrage horror slowly but surely appearing on her face.
"You cannot ask me something like that, lieutenant! Please tell me you haven't been postponing reporting dead bodies," abruptly she paused as if she found her own voice too shrill and high – he agreed, it had gone up in a volume he rarely heard – and then with a little intake of breath she continued, voice much more neutral and controlled, "No, wait I don't want to know – I want to have plausible deniability later on. So shush it."
Andy nodded, "Okay" and then in a swift move he turned around, ready to leave her office in a hurry.
Andy stopped midstride, his last name striking fear in him; cold like ice the way it tingled down his spine. He gave her a sheepish look over his shoulder hesitating on one foot, contemplating whether he should make a run for it or not.
"Sit," she drawled in a cold voice and pointed at the chair in front of her desk. He looked to the ceiling with a roll of his eyes – oh lord, now she was going to lecture him as if he hadn't been lectured enough for one day.
Reluctantly he closed the door behind him, thinking it was better not to have any witnesses to the scolding he was about to receive. He took his time sliding into the chair; he decided to lounge in it, a casual attitude and a little charming smile – surely that would appease her.
She still looked horrified.
"Why is it you always manage to ruin my day?"
He opened his mouth about to reply – but apparently it was a rhetorical question for she raised an eyebrow at him and he shut his mouth again. She continued, "You have a unique knack for getting into ridiculous situations, you are aware of that aren't you?"
"Sorry," he said, putting a bit of remorse into his voice, hanging his head at an appropriate level.
She gave him another look, one that clearly stated she saw through his bullshit and thought he was an idiot, "Does this hypothetical disastrous situation you find yourself in have anything to do with Taylor roaming my halls angry like a pissed off ant, ranting left and right about you and Provenza?"
"Possibly," Andy paused, gauging her expression to be somewhat long-suffering, "but hey, don't worry – we got that under control."
She pursed her lips, "And why in god's name are you wearing that outfit?" her voice turned snide now, narrowed in on his jersey and the cap on his head that he had yet to get rid of, even if the chief had expressly told him to do so.
Andy grinned slyly, "Well, you see," he started but Sharon interrupted him.
"You went to the game," her voice turned pouty now, "without me?"
Andy sighed, suddenly remembering he had technically promised her he would take her out to a game the next time he got tickets.
"Well, I haven't been to the game yet – the situation got in the way."
"You're forgetting intent, you fool. You were planning on going to the game without me."
She had a point.
"Provenza secured the tickets," Andy lied, "So, really, I couldn't invite you along; he can't stand the sight of you and we only had two tickets."
"So," she drew it out, "You prefer that old prick over me?"
Andy shook his head, "It was skybox tickets, Sharon! I couldn't tell him I couldn't go with him because Internal Affairs had dibs on me!"
She sniffed, "You owe me big time."
Andy smiled, quirking one eyebrow suggestively at her, "You name your price, honey, and I'll deliver."
She smiled back – only it was not full of mirth or even humor, more laced with disdain than he would have liked, "I want skybox tickets."
Andy gave a slow nod, "Yeah – that's gonna be hard to pull off again – I'm not sure my contact -"
She interrupted him, "I thought you said Provenza secured the tickets this time?"
"Oh," she rolled her eyes, "just go resolve your situation – you're being too obnoxious for my liking."
Andy grinned at her, trying to inflict some boyish charm into it. Her lips curled and she shook her head a bit.
There was a moment of silence where Andy decided her eyes had a tiny glint of amusement in them even if she still seemed somewhat annoyed by his hypothetical situation.
"I'll just go back to," Andy stood up a rogue smile directed at her, "resolving my shit-situation then."
She waved, "Good luck."
"Thank you Captain."
On his way out of her office she laughed, Andy turned around in the doorway and watched her crinkled eyes.
"What?" he asked suspiciously.
"I'm just so happy you're not part of my division," she told him, her voice even sounding relived.
Andy rolled his eyes, "Yeah – it would be too much temptation."
"Yes," she agreed, "I would be tempted on a daily basis to deliver a well-directed shot to your lower regions with my Glock."
Andy reflectively put a hand in front of said anatomy, feigning a horrified expression, "You witch!"
Her laughter followed him out the door and he smiled to himself as he made his way back to the murder room; god it was a mess.
/OUT OF FOCUS/
For once Andrew Flynn had somewhat innocuous thoughts – or rather they were innocent before he rounded the corner into the open space of Internal Affairs' break room. He stopped short at the sight of Sharon Raydor leaning against a table, two hands braced palm down on the top surface and her back arched back – he had the most wonderful view of her ass coming into the room, the scent of freshly brewing coffee heavy in the air. This might just be his favorite combination, he thought, the promise of strong bitter coffee and the view to the stretch of a black skirt across her backside, the back of her thighs framed. Shit, he thought; that was a view that elicited salacious imagery.
He grinned; Sharon had a strange predilection for leaning on inanimate objects and every so often he would catch her in the act so to speak.
Andy couldn't help himself, the situation too delectable to pass up – she hadn't noticed his presence yet so with stealth he moved towards her, mindful of keeping quiet. He noticed the open magazine on the table, open to a page with fashionable dresses, a review report next to it – judging by the line of her eyes she was more focused on the fashion article. He smiled even more widely, the notion of her immersed in something frivolous while waiting for her coffee – it was quite frankly exhilarating as hell.
With precision he slid up to her, his arms going along on either side of her, his hips an inch from the jut of her ass; he blew air into her ear, half covered by her hair, "You are looking positively nefarious when you stand with your ass in the air."
The only sign she was surprised was the small shiver he could feel in her body against his chest and the way she suddenly stood so rigidly still that he could hear the air leaving her mouth.
"Lieutenant, what are you doing?" her voice was low, almost a whisper – he would liken it to the low simmer of fire eating away at a log of wood, at a low ember but with the capacity for blazing danger.
"Indulging in a fantasy," Andy whispered back, the tone escaping with a little sultry timbre he had no control over.
She laughed, her body shaking, "You fantasize about rubbing against me like a wayward dog in heat?"
"Yeah," he confirmed, moving closer, his groin now in contact with the fabric of her skirt. She surprised him when in a vindictive little greeting she pushed her ass back into him, her head tilting back so he could look into her eyes. They were remarkably green up close and her lips were curled around a smug, treacherous smile.
She pouted her red lips and then purred, "Does your fantasy include a year's worth of sexual harassment seminars?"
He grinned, "No."
"Then I suggest you remove your erection from my presence and I will simply put this incident down in my own personal book as you being once again an absolute fool."
Quickly he moved back, air once again between their bodies; he let his hand linger for a moment on her spine when he rounded the table, standing at her shoulder instead. Her eyes followed him, the green deepening with shadows; it was that special look where it was impossible to garner whether she was amused or pissed off – it was a look he thought suited her.
"You're without a doubt a depraved, despicable friend," she drawled, standing up straight and crossing her arms.
Andy smiled, "I'm sorry but there's something about you leaning against, well frankly anything that I find mostly stimulating."
She rolled her eyes, "Asshole."
Andy nodded cheekily, "Yeah."
"What are you doing here?"
"What – I need a special pass to enter the haunted corridors of I.A now?"
"Yees," she sing-songed, a little smirk at the corner of her mouth now.
Andy smiled and then shook his head, amused. He pointed over his shoulder, "Do you want me to pour you a cup?"
She nodded, eyes once again on the magazine.
With another headshake Andy went to the coffee machine, finding two coffee cups and pouring black liquid into both. Sharon gave a little smile when he offered her one cup, the smile deepening when she sipped.
"Ahhh," she sighed once her lips left the rim.
"Long day?" Andy asked her, sipping coffee as well – it warmed and he was pleased to find it was indeed Sharon who had made it; she had an inclination for making her coffee strong like no one else he knew.
"Mm-hmm," she hummed in answer, another sip and sigh.
Sharon sat down on the edge of the table now, one leg over the other, dangling, her head tilted fractionally back so she could regard him;
Andy leaned towards her, one hand palm down on the table, trying to decipher what that small cheeky upturn of one corner of her mouth meant.
"You know," she started conversationally, the tone too innocent for Andy's liking, "I have a file with your name on it on my desk."
He arched an eyebrow, "Oh really?"
"Really," she said, the word caressed.
Andy took a sip of his coffee, closing his eyes in enjoyment – when he opened them again the half curved smile had blossomed into a full wide grin, her eyes crinkled as well. He smiled back. "Nothing's new then, the sun sets in the west."
"No, everything's the same old," she laughed in agreement.
Andy laughed as well, "Let me guess; Taylor?"
She shook her head, "Not even close."
"No, no – I've never received a complaint from her; to tell you the truth I'm not sure she's even aware Internal Affairs exists."
Andy gave a shrug, looking into space and then back at Sharon with an a-ha look, "It's Provenza! I've been annoying him rather
Sharon laughed again, "Oh no – he would never so much as set foot in these corridors let alone email me."
"No," she shook her head, hair strands following the movement.
"No," her lips trembled with a restrained laugh.
"What!" Andy sputtered; he had only mentioned Traffic as a joke. "You've got to be kidding me! What have I done? Heck; I haven't been near those neanderthals in months!"
Sharon neglected to answer him, instead she took a long slurp of her coffee, smiling around the rim briefly.
Andy glared at her, waiting impatiently for her to explain why Traffic was filing reports against him.
She emitted another satisfied hum, her teeth white when she simply smiled back at him.
Andy arched an eyebrow at her, tilting his head to indicate she should continue to explain.
"They classified the complaint under reckless endangerment of governmental property," she told him, her words a puzzle.
She laughed, "Honey – it's practically nothing; I'm just having you on."
Andy gave her a long look, "You're awful."
She grinned, "Yes, you tell me so occasionally."
Andy shook his head.
They both drank a bit more coffee, eying each other with half-amused, half-gleeful smiles.
"What's this about you annoying Provenza?" she asked him.
Andy smiled widely, "Oh, I've been putting things on his desk all day – it annoys the crap out of him."
"You mean to tell me that all it takes?"
They both laughed.
"You still owe me," she hummed, leaning to the side and she tilted her head in an adorably fashion.
Andy stared, "What?"
"You still owe me something equal to skybox tickets," she patted the front of his chest, her hand flat and her smile wicked.
"Oh – yeah – about that," Andy started, trying to come up with something and then with a wicked thought, he leaned down, his mouth against
her ear, "you know, you can always cash in for something much more enjoyable, huh? A little tumble – I'll make it worth your while. You, me and that monstrosity of a desk you have in your office? Huh, what do you say?"
He could feel her breath against his throat, warm. Her voice was amused and rich when she answered, "Are you positive you can get it up for that?"
"And you have time for such a strenuously exercise now?" her voice turned even more throaty with sarcasm, "You are not currently investigating why a photographer fell to his death? Why last I heard you were supposed to be buried mountain deep in reports."
Andy merely gave her a cheeky smile, one eyebrow raised, "We could always do a quickie?"
"I'd rather sit through a ten-hour long departmental meeting concerning budget."
"Ouch," Andy leaned back enough so he could watch her eyes, a hand to his chest in mock-hurt.
Her teeth showed, the smile dangerous.
Andy sighed dramatically, "Oh well, you're missing out."
"What a shame," she retorted dryly and the she took her magazine and laid it out in her lap, eyes on it; she waved her hand in his direction,"Why don't you scatter off down to the trenches – go annoy Provenza."
Andy saluted her even if she did not look up again, "Whatever you say Ma'am."
On his way out of the room he turned around and said, "Thanks for the coffee."
"Anytime," she replied, obviously not aware he was not thinking about the coffee.
Andy grinned – and then decided to go down and annoy Provenza some more.
/HEAD OVER HEELS/
Andrew Flynn watched porn unfold on one of the screens in electronics, bated breath and an urge to run a hand along his inner thigh; the scene on the monitor evolved, shitty dialogue swiftly replaced by action. He couldn't help but grin at the scenario, a prim schoolteacher in a too short black skirt being bent across a desk by Chris Mundy acting as student. Moaning absurdum commenced, clothes quickly being swept aside.
Andy was casually lounging in a chair, his feet up on the table next to the monitors. He followed the happenings on the screen as he held his phone to his ear, waiting for Sharon Raydor to answer the rather impromptu call.
"What do you want?" her sleek voice came through the line, a little huff of annoyance in it.
Andy tilted his chair a bit backwards, corking his head to the side so he could better follow the action on the screen, "Good day to you too, miss sunshine."
He could practically hear the eye-roll over the line.
"Yeah," he hummed, his mouth opening when the video on the screen chose a close-up of the couple.
"What in the world are you doing?" she paused and then in a low, almost shocked voice, "are you with somebody?"
Andy laughed, "Don't worry, I'm just watching porn."
There was dead silence for a second and then her voice came on again, clearly annoyed now, "You're watching," she whispered the next word in a hiss, "porn at work?"
Andy hummed, "Oh yeah – I've been watching it all day; it's come to the point where I'm considering clawing out my eyeballs."
She snickered, a high tone and then in an smug voice,"Lieutenant– that's the worst lie I've ever heard come out of your mouth."
"True," he relented, "This must be the most titillating thing I've ever done at work to date."
He pictured how she would quirk an eyebrow at him and tilt her head marginally to the side, amused at his expense.
She spoke, the tone trembling as if she was holding back a laugh, "I feel sorry for you, I really do – what with so meager experiences of having fun at work that you've come to the point where porn does it."
Andy simply groaned in reply.
"I'm so pleased you still have wits enough to articulate your thoughts into comprehensible sentences," her voice had turned remarkably dry now; a special tone that always seemed to hover between humor and superiority.
Andy smiled, "You're in an extraordinary good mood today, huh. Did someone shoot your pet-detective?"
"Ha-ha – no my pet Elliot is just dandy."
"He sure is," Andy said, keeping his tone deliberately suggestive, "dandy like no one's business."
"Mm-hmm," she hummed, the tone dripping like melting candle wax; Andy took a deep inhalation, trying to imagine
what she was doing. Was she in the break room? – drinking coffee? In her office? Oh – he would stick to the office he thought, his mouth automatically parting in a smug grin.
"Sooo," she drew the word out and he imagined how her lips parted slowly around the vocals – he imagined a lot of things actually; the way she would sit on her desk, legs crossed and her skirt inching higher and higher, "you wanted to double up on the fun? Is that why you called me in the middle of your depraved porn-ogling?"
"Mm-hmm – there's this prissy bespectacled schoolteacher who reminds me of you in an extremely uncanny fashion.
Bouncy breasts, if you know what I mean."
"Oh god, you're a study in itself, lieutenant!"
"You can come study me any time you want, Capt'n," he retorted.
"Let me guess; there's a desk involved in your beloved porn scene?"
"How utterly cliché."
"What about a ruler?" her voice turned to a breathy hum Andy found absolutely alluring even if she was simply making a show out of teasing him.
"Uh," he purred, "This is creepy! Are you watching porn too, Capt'n?"
She laughed and Andy laughed with her.
Next he heard her breathe heavily, the tone throaty and then she said with a sultry hum, "My lamp's broken."
"Oh – how absolutely dreadful, doll," Andy went along, a wide grin spreading across his face.
"You should come fix it, Mister."
"You want me to cum while I fix it as well?"
She moaned dramatically and even if it was only in spite he felt excited, "god –woman," he groaned back in equal theatrics.
"You came, huh? – unexpectedly and quite prematurely?" she jabbed at him, laughter simmering just under the surface of the tone.
"Yeah – it's made quite a mess," he delivered back, "shit, it's everywhere."
She giggled now, "You're the worst! The absolute worst, lieutenant."
They both broke down in laughter, hers a warm, high noise on the phone.
"I could fix your lamp though – I'm very good at fixing stuff," Andy husked over the phone – he heard the door into electronics opening; it was probably Provenza coming back with coffee or something. Andy did not bother turning around, instead he continued to talk over the phone, "I'm pretty neat with multitasking as well, why I could have you -"
Someone blew hot air onto his neck, a finger running across his cheek in a slow trail.
Andy jumped in his chair and dropped the phone from his ear in surprise; it clattered to the floor and he was beyond stunned to find Sharon standing before him, her eyes full of delight and her mouth curved in the widest smile he had ever seen grace her face.
"Boo," she breathed through a little fit of giggles.
Andy shook his head and smiled back just as broadly, "Shit, you scared the crap outta me."
She continued to giggle, one hand going to her stomach and her eyes closing.
Provenza chose that exact moment to enter electronics and Andy watched as the old man stopped midstride in shock, his complexion turning a pale shade at the sight of Sharon Raydor giggling while the room buzzed with moaning sounds from the porn movie.
Andy couldn't help but chuckle; the sight of Provenza standing with a popcorn bowl looking flabbergasted and
Sharon none the wiser to the intrusion still in her little fit of laughter – it was a precious scene, he thought.
Provenza coughed loudly after a second, eyes narrowing in a swift flash – directed at both Andy and Sharon.
Sharon stopped giggling her eyes going slightly wide before she looked over her shoulder, regarding Provenza with an enquiring eyebrow, "Yes, lieutenant?" she asked him, one hand now at her hip, "Do you need something?"
Andy grinned and wondered what was going on inside Provenza's head; he looked ready to implode – eyes going wide and his mouth opening and closing.
"Um, right – no, – I'll just come back later," Provenza said and then with a derisive wave in their direction, he said in a snide voice, "and you can go back to whatever you're doing." He turned on his heel and went out of the room but not before giving Andy the strangest glower.
Andy sighed, "Shit – he's going to pester me nonstop now. I'll never hear the end of it."
Sharon barked a short laugh, eyes on him still full of humor, "That one really doesn't like me."
Andy nodded in agreement, "Yeah – I think it's a bit too much for him, your presence in consort with porn. Might have exploded his brain."
"It's most certainly exploded yours," she retorted and he gave her a cheeky smile in return.
Sharon giggled again.
Andy gave her a gentle smile, "See – porn cheered you up."
She rolled her eyes, "Yes, just what I needed to take the dull out of an otherwise boring work day."
They shook their heads at each other and then for Provenza's sake they exited electronics; they found Provenza outside the room still looking pale as a ghost – Sharon gave both of them a cheerful wave, her voice dry "Enjoy your movies, boys."
Andy watched her walk away, down the corridor, a definite sway to the walk.
He sighed loudly.
"Mind out of the gutter, buddy!" Provenza chided him, "That road only leads to trouble."
Andy regarded Provenza, not able to keep a grin off his face, "Trouble is underrated."
Provenza rolled his eyes, "Oh god, what has that woman done to you!"
Andy shook his head, "Nothin'"
Provenza took a handful of popcorn and said while he chewed, the voice muffled, "What did she want, anyway? Is she on a hunt?"
"Nope, nothing of the sort - she just had a question regarding a report I wrote last month,"Andy lied.
Provenza rolled his eyes and then with a sour expression he walked back into electronics again, muttering under his breath, "Idiot."
Andy smiled and followed his partner, "Hey, I didn't invite her – she simply showed up!"
"I don't understand what it is with you and your unhealthy obsession with internal affairs."
Andy snuck his hand into the popcorn bowl and stuffed the snack into his mouth; he said around a mouthful, "There's nothing to understand – I like annoying her."
Provenza gave a loud, dramatic sigh, turned to a chair and sat down; ignoring Andy for now.
Andy shrugged and sat down again, picking his phone up from the floor; he leaned back in the chair and watched the screen again, his thoughts however in an entirely different location.
Andrew Flynn stormed through corridors and doors, a hard angry expression on his face. His insides felt like thunder and darkness come to life; it was no wonder everyone scattered from his sight like he was the devil incarnate come to take away their life. Storming into I.A headquarters, Andy stopped up barely able to catch his breath before he pointed his finger menacingly at the Elliot kid. The kid was the only occupant of the spacious room, standing with a report in his hands looking absolutely ridiculous, a wary look in his eyes when he noticed Andy.
"Where is she?" Andy barked at the kid who looked downright frightened now. Andy noticed his own hands shook, the finger pointed at the detective shaking – he wondered when was the last time he had felt this worked up. He couldn't remember.
"Um," Elliot stammered, eyes flickering around the room as if he sought an exit.
"Where is she?" Andy repeated, this time in a warning growl as he took a step closer to the detective.
"The toilet," the kid answered promptly, pointing towards the hallway.
Andy quickly spun on his feet and strode out into the hallway again – anger spurned on by everything; it boiled when he stood still and it burned when he moved. Shit, he thought – he had no incentive to cool down, no reason to stop up and comprehend the situation before he acted. Frankly he did not give a crap; he had one goal in mind.
Andy kicked the door open into the women's bathroom finding Sharon Raydor inside in front of the mirror examining herself, a cautious hand to the back of her head. She jumped in fright at his intrusion – eyes quickly turning downright aggravated when she turned to look at him.
"Lieutenant!" she scolded as she crossed her arms, a definite tilt of derision to her stance, "what are you doing?"
Andy closed the door behind him with a softer push than before, approaching her – he scrutinized her from top to toe; she looked unharmed.
"Is it true?" he asked, his voice trembling when he came within an arm's length of her.
Her eyes widened a fraction, a small panicked look before she was composed again a second later and instead she directed a frown at his close proximity. She took a little step away from him, her arms even more firmly crossed. "Is what true?" she asked, obviously not feeling up for honesty today, defensive already.
Andy grumbled, trying to exhale the air that felt trapped in his lungs, "Sergeant Kearns down from third said there was an incidence earlier, involving you? Something about a rookie getting violent with you?"
She pursed her lips, "You shouldn't trust the grapevine to get facts straight, Andy – you know that."
Oh, she was going to be difficult.
"What happened?" Andy pushed the words out of his gritted teeth, trying to get her to look at him; she avoided his eyes and instead she seemed to look inwards.
"It's nothing – it's been dealt with."
"Who?" he managed to get out of his clenched jaw, his hands turning to fists by his side.
"It's inconsequential, lieutenant."
"It matters – a great deal – to me," he paused, noted she was still tight-lipped, "Spit it out, Captain – or I'll find detective Elliot and force him to tell me. Hell I'll know by the end of the day anyway."
She rolled her eyes, "Stop being childish – it doesn't concern you."
Andy glared at her, now crossing his arms as well.
"I'm not disclosing a name to you. I know very well what will happen then. We are not repeating past mistakes, lieutenant."
"I'm merely concerned – and I have every right to be. There's no need to worry about me – I'm not about to go ballistic. I just need to know what happened – otherwise it's going to go around in my head all day and I'll imagine something that's even worse than what really happened."
She looked away, "It's just a little bump," she touched the back of her head.
Andy gritted his teeth once more and forced himself to not yell at her, "I've had a shitty day, Sharon; don't make it any worse."
She looked up, an angry almost exasperated look now in her eyes, "Oh, I'm sorry – I didn't know I needed to cater to your every whim and emotion."
Andy rolled his eyes, "We had a shitty case, that's all."
"Yes, surprise – I've had a shitty day too."
"Hey, if you wanna yell at me, go ahead."
The air seemed to go out of her, she sighed and then, "It was an accident – sort of. I got pushed – hit my head on the wall. He's already suspended, pending further investigation. There's no need to discuss it with you."
There was a short moment of silence and Andy watched as she sighed and then she opened her mouth, "I need you to promise me you'll stay calm?"
"I promise," Andy lied.
"I was investigating an OIS of Sergeant Keith – the one from Narcotics you abhor," she paused briefly, a self-aware smile on her lips, "he fired his weapon while drunk and off duty. Well, he doesn't like me one bit and showed up for work today, drunk again. I went to confront him and things escalated."
Andy turned on his heel; that was all he needed to know.
"Andy," Sharon called after him in an angry tone, "you promised, you idiot."
Andy resolutely ignored her as he stormed out of the bathroom, rage once again livid inside him; he knew what was going to happen now and he knew it would end in some kind of remark on his permanent record but he did not care. He headed for the elevator in a half sprint, knowing he had to be quick before Sharon caught up with him and tried to talk some sense into him as she would put it.
He heard the click of her heels as she followed him, the puff of air that preceded an angry, "Lieutenant Flynn!" Andy hopped into one of the elevator doors, two uniforms already in there, eying him curiously.
Andy pushed the floor for narcotics and then the button that made the elevator doors close just in front of Sharon; he caught the exasperated look in her eyes but moreover he found himself finding her looking vulnerable, the way her mouth slightly parted in horror and the vivid color of something in her eyes he could not decipher.
The narcotics break room was full of people, a ruckus that was usually only on behalf of bringing in a street of gang-bangers. This time however there was a flurry of unrest in the room and Andy noticed how a few of the officers who recognized him stood aside with uncertainty; they obviously knew why he was here and had yet to make up their minds whether they should stop him or not. Fortunately there was no one ranking higher than Andy himself so he simple glared, growled at the few who were too slow to move out of his way. It worked wonders, a clear path to the middle of the room where a couple of young sergeants were facing Keith – the dirtbag comfortable in a chair, his loud voice reeking of inebriation and a cup of coffee in his right hand.
Andy fumed at the sight and he briefly wondered why no one had kicked the rookie home yet; it didn't matter – as far as Andy was concerned it just made his next action that more feasible.
Andy enjoyed the vivid realization that appeared on the dirtbag's face when he recognized Andy, eyes widening within a second, horror in the depths and a strangled cry when Andy barreled his way through, a hand fisted around the shirt collar of the guy.
Momentum carried the bastard backwards, Andy throwing his weight into overturning the chair – the idiot was just short of banging his head into the floor, landing with a slam onto the floor, the chair beneath him and Andy above, towering. A well-placed knee in the guy's abdomen and it was a locked position, warm coffee on the guys arm and on the floor.
Andy growled, lips parting in a snarl, "You like abusing women, huh."
The idiot shook his head, trying to wriggle out of the grip.
Andy leaned closer, an angry whisper, "If you ever look at her again – if you ever say anything to her or so much as glance in her direction, I'm going to make sure I empty my whole clip in your goddamn ball sack – you understand?"
The bastard swallowed, his Adams apple bobbing up and down, "The bitch - "
Andy gripped tighter around the collar, shaking the guy into the floor hard, "It's not a negotiation, you scumbag. You're out of line – and I'll personally strangle you if you ever do anything to her again! You understand that you fucking neanderthal!"
"Lieutenant Flynn," Taylor's voice came in amidst the crowd, hard and demanding attention.
Andy let go of the creep with an extra shove and got to his feet, brushing off the lint from the front of his trousers. "Yeah," he looked back over his shoulder, finding Taylor standing with arms crossed and an annoyed expression. Sharon stood behind him, a little to the left, her complexion white – from either anger or embarrassment, Andy couldn't tell. She completely avoided his eyes – avoided looking at anyone he noticed.
He had to give it to her; it was a smart move to bring along someone who knew Andy well. Taylor did – they had after all worked together for nearly a decade before the sleazebag had stabbed Andy in the back.
Taylor narrowed his eyes and looked at the scumbag still scrawled on the floor, "You better be out of this building in under two minutes, Brent. Your Captain will surely give you a call tomorrow," Taylor paused and then with an arched eyebrow, "chop, chop."
The idiot flew to his feet, easily out of the room before anyone could utter another word. Andy noticed Sharon had left as well – he sighed; she was never going to forgive him.
One by one everyone left the break room leaving only Taylor and Andy.
Taylor shook his head, his mouth changing between a tight line and a little quirk upwards of one end, as if he couldn't decide whether he found the whole situation amusing or outrageous.
"Congratulation, you bastard," Taylor said never the one to miss an opportunity to be a brat about Andy screwing up, "You've once again managed to send yourself off to anger management class."
Andy shrugged, "Yeah – I felt it was time for a brush-up course."
Taylor rolled his eyes, "She's going to make life hell for you from now on, you know that don't you?"
Andy spread his arms out, palms upside down and a wide smile, "She'll forgive me."
Taylor snorted, "Ha – then you've obviously forgotten what happened the last time you went all caveman on her behalf."
Andy sighed; he would rather forget. "It doesn't matter."
Taylor nodded, and Andy took it for agreement.
They stood for a second in silence before they both departed, Andy going back to his own murder room and Taylor slithering off to whatever nest he came from, a little passing nod between them. Sometimes you found common ground when you least expected it – Andy was sure anyone but Taylor would have had put him on mandatory leave without pay for at least a couple of weeks. Anger management class; that he could do with his eyes closed and with one foot on the ground.
No; the tricky thing was how to smooth things over with Sharon.
More to come – eventually ;)