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Gone Baby Gone

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Elliot sat in the principal's office as he waited on his wife to show.

The door bursts open and Olivia rushes in. "I'm here. What happened?" The principal sighed and rubbed her hands through her hair.

"Well, usually Noah is one of our star students but lately he's been acting out." Olvia looked at her husband with a raised brow then back at the principal. "Acting out? How so?"

"Well today a kid try to play with one of Noah's toys and he punched the little boy." Elliot watched his wife's jaw drop. "Did he say why he hit him?"

"He just told the teacher you can't take what's not yours. We're just going to send him home for today but if this happens again we're going to have to take more serious action. We can't have him going around punching kids. I'll call for him you can wait out in the hall."

The couple stepped out into the hall and Olivia leaned in the wall as her husband stood in front of her. "This is my fault."

"Liv," Elliot speaks up to try but Olivia isn't having it. "No. It is. I didn't listen to you when you told me that we shouldn't let this woman into our lives so easily and quickly."

"Liv. She's his grandmother. I know you were trying to do what was right and I don't blame you for that. I'll never will."

Before Olivia could Noah appeared in front of them. "Hi, mom. Hi dad." They watched as Noah spoke but didn't lift his head. "Come on. We're leaving. Mom has to get back to work."

As they head out to their respective vehicles Elliot gave his wife and kiss before walking to his car. "Liv. We'll talk about this when we get home." Climbing the front seat Elliot looked at his youngest son through the rearview mirror. "Do you have anything thing to say?" Noah shook his head but never looked in his father's direction.

Walking through the front door Olivia dropped her work bag on the door side table and walked to her son's room. Walking in she sees him on the floor doing his homework.

"So your father has told me that you've decided that you have nothing to say well good because I want you to listen. What happened today was not okay. You know it and I know it. I know you've been having a hard time lately but that doesn't mean that you can go around punching your classmates. You know that. So what we're going to do is you don't leave this room until you feel like speaking and then we figure out your punishment. You know the drill. No nothing. Goodnight."

Walking into her bedroom Olivia searches for her husband. "El?" Getting no response but hearing noise in their bathroom she makes her way over. Pushing the door open she sees her husband has run her a bath. "Hey, welcome. I heard someone had a bad day."

Holding his hand out to his wife Elliot waited for her to grab it. Pulling her towards the jacuzzi tub he begins to help her strip. After Olivia steps into the tub, Elliot turns and grabs a wine glass. He hands it to her and walks towards the door. "Where are you going?"

Slightly turning towards her he pulls the door open. "I'm going to check on the kids and I'll be right back.

Ten minutes later Olivia is lounging on her husband's chest caressing his hands she lays her head back onto his shoulder. "Do you remember the day you finally showed up to my old apartment after you retired?" Her husband chuckles behind her; "Do I? I'll never forget."

"Kathy? What are you doing here?" Elliot watched as his ex-wife walked into his building like she owned the place. "So I just got a call from Olivia. It was the craziest thing she asked me if I've heard from you or if you had been home. Which was weird considering you haven't lived there in months. Do you want to explain to me why you haven't told her we've separated again? How she doesn't know that the divorce will be finalized?"

Elliot shook his head and plopped himself on the old grey couch in his new apartment. "I was going to then a shooting happened at the precinct. A vic's daughter. She was the same age as Liz. She came in just shooting and I pulled my gun and I talked her down by one of the guys in lockup mouthed off and she raised her arm to fire and I..." Shaking his head Elliot laid his head in his head and rubbed his eyes. "I killed her."

Olivia was laying on her couch with an arm covering her eyes.

"Elliot put his papers in. There was nothing I could do."

She was going the conversation with her captain I'm her head when the bell rang. Standing up she swung the door open and there he stood with his wife. Her best friend. Her partner. And his wife. Olivia never got a word out before Kathy pushed past her pulling on Elliot's arm.

She watched as Kathy pushed him on the couch before she sat down on the matching chair leaving Olivia nowhere to sit but next to Elliot. "Liv. Elliot has something to tell you." Elliot's head never raised. He just sat and shook his head.

"Fine. I'll tell you. We're getting a divorce. Well, actually it was already finalized. I got the papers this morning right before you called me actually. I've been trying to get him to tell you how he feels since we've started the process. I'm not blind. I've always known how you two felt about each other. I just didn't want to let go. Then I met someone and it was like I couldn't breathe when I first spoke to him. Slowly but surely I fell for him and he told me how he felt."

"That night when Elliot got home. I sat him down and told him that it was over and it had been for 12 years. We're celebrating our one year in two weeks. Getting back together was a mistake. I love Eli and I don't regret him but I do regret that we got back together because he shouldn't have been with me. He loves you and you love him. I've seen it each time I came to the precinct. Whether you guys were about to rip each other heads off or sharing food and drinks. So I'm going to go pick up Eli from his play date while you two pull your heads out of your asses. Goodnight."

Neither moved an inch for ten minutes. Not until they received a text from Kathy. Start Talking. They both let out a little laugh. Before it went quiet again.

"El why didn't you tell me? About any of it. The divorce. Your retirement. Why?" Olivia watched as he rubbed his newly grown beard.

"I was going to believe me. I was going to but then Jenna happened at first I didn't know how to deal with it. I killed a kid. The same age as my youngest girl. Then I had a talk with Don. I told him I was retiring because I lost my way. I wasn't there because of the job anymore but there solely for you and that's not fair. To you or the victims. He told me about a similar experience he had and how if it wasn't for his wife Marge he wouldn't have gotten through it. Then he told me it was a relief I was retiring because he didn't want to have to deal with us when we finally go it together. Liv. I love you."

"You know I don't think we properly thanked her for that. Or Carl actually. I'm glad she dragged me out of the house. I don't think I ever told you but she practically dragged me by my ear. In the car, she kept saying that it doesn't happen now it won't happen and I'll regret it and she was right. I would've regretted it if we didn't get together that night.

Noah peeked his head into his parent's room and walked into the foot of their bed. Olivia looked up from her book and set it on her bedside table. "Are you ready to talk?" When he nodded Olivia sat up and gestured to the bed. As Noah climbed up Elliot walked out of the bathroom.

Olivia gave Elliot a "just sit down" look. "So, Noah do you want to explain to us what happened today?"

"I was playing with my toys at recess and some older kid come over and broke one of them. So I got up and punched him."

Sighing Olivia pinched her nose and looked at her youngest. "I understand that he broke your toy but why hit him? Why not get a teacher?"

"Because daddy said Stablers don't let people walk all over us and Richie said we always stand up for ourselves."

"Noah that doesn't mean you have to hit them. Fighting is not ok?"

"But I saw you and grandma Shelia fighting! So how come when I do it I get in trouble. It's not fair!"

"Noah come here." Olivia patted on the empty between her and her husband. "Noah, I shouldn't have been fighting her, and I definitely didn't want you to see that."

"So how come I can't see her anymore?"

"Well, Noah, remember she did something bad so she had to go away? Ok, can we make a deal? I won't fight anymore but you can't fight anymore either."

"Benson." Olivia picked up her cell phone with a mouth full of food. "Mom's talking with her mouth full." Swallowing, Olivia gave her son a look and excused herself from the table.

"Liv." Closing her eyes she already knew what the call was about Elliot let her know he was missing dinner that night.

"What happened?" She questioned her husband's partner with a shaky breath. "We were ambushed. He was sending you a text when the shots were fired. He's on the way to Mercy." Hanging up without another word Olivia made her way back to the dining room. "Lucy."

The family babysitter who had stayed for dinner followed her boss to her bedroom. "Listen Lucy I know you were supposed to leave after dinner but that was Ayanna, Elliot was shot." She was in the process of changing into jeans when she finally processed what she was just told. Dropping on her bed she placed her head in her hands and began sobbing. "He was a shot and I don't know if he's ok or not. I can't lose him. Not after everything we've been through. I won't be able to handle it." After taking a few deep breaths Olivia stood and began to finishing dressing. "I need you to put the kids to bed I'll call Maureen or Kathleen to come relieve you but Lucy please don't tell them anything until I know more please."

"Liv. I got it. You go don't worry about us and you don't need to call anyone. I'm here as long as you need me." Nodding at her babysitter she grabbed her purse and began to walk out. "Kids I'll be back ok? Lucy's going to put you guys to bed be good."

Pulling up to Mercy she left her car at the valet and ran inside. "My husband was brought in. Elliot Stabler. Where is he?" The nurse held her hand up and she continued laughing it up on the phone. Reaching across the counter she snatched the phone out of the woman's hand and glared at her. "Look lady you have 20 seconds to tell me where to find my husband or so help me god I'll jump across this counter and I promise you don't want that. Now his name is Elliot Stabler." Before the woman could even make a move her name was called from behind her. "Liv!" Turning around she watched as her husband's partner started walking towards her. Turning back to the desk she tossed the phone back at the nurse and turned on her heel.

"The doctor has an update but he'll only talk to his next of kin." Following the woman, Olivia couldn't help but run the possible scenarios in her mind.

"I'm sorry Ma'am but your husband's heart couldn't stand the surgery and he didn't make it."

"LIV!" Snapping out of her thoughts Olivia looked at who she could assume was her husband's doctor. "Mrs. Stabler. I was your husband's surgeon. All but one of the bullets were through and through but we were able to remove that final bullet however it pierced his lung, we were able to fix it but we won't know how bad his lungs were affected until he wakes up. This brings me to my other concern. When your husband fell he hit his head on the sidewalk his brain swelled to an excessive size so we've placed him in a medically induced coma."

"Coma? My husband's in a coma?"

"Yes, Ma'am we will lower the anesthesia once the swelling goes down and take him into surgery to make sure everything went the way it was supposed to and relieve the rest of the pressure ourselves."

"Brain surgery ok? And how long will it take for the swelling to go down."

"Well with the size about two to three weeks."

"TWO TO THREE WEEKS?! Oh god. And if doesn't go down then what?" When the doctor didn't say anything she began sobbing. "Can I see him?"

"Yes, but only family can be in the room, and then it can only be two visitors." Following the doctor, she tried to slow her breathing and calm down.

Walking into the hospital room her heart dropped when she finally laid eyes on her husband. He was pale and he has tubes in his mouth. "Oh, El." She grabbed a chair and pulled it closer to the bed. Sitting down she reached for her arm but flinched when she realized she felt him. His skin was the coldest it's ever been. "Hey, baby. Can he hear me?" She turned to the doctor who followed her into the room.

"We're not sure ma'am but talking to him is good."

"Look at what you got yourself into. I always told you to be careful. You're like a giant magnet. We're always in this situation. You shot and me and Kathy at your bedside well not this time because we're married now. With seven kids. A whole football team as we like to call them. You missed out on dinner tonight. I made lasagna and mac and cheese. With salad and chicken. I know that a lot but I don't know I was kind of craving them all."

"El. I need you to wake up ok baby. I need you to be okay. I don't want you to miss anything. Don't forget Eli and Noah have the father and son event in two months. Remember how excited you were when they told you even though you were a little surprised they wanted their 'old man dad' there. I love you and I need you. I don't think I can do this without you. You've been in my life for 19 years. I don't remember what's like to be without you and I don't know what it's like to not wake up beside you and I don't want to. Okay? So please come back to me please."