For Elliot, love begins like the rain —falling.
It starts off gently. A delicate pitter patter of emotion on the windows of his soul, and he’s sure it will ebb eventually. But then years go by, and the rain never lessens. The storm grows and swells with every smile, every shared coffee, every accidental brush of hands until he forgets what life without the rain is like.
The impression of Olivia permeates his dreams, his pulse beats in tandem with hers until one day he chooses Olivia over the case, the rainfall becomes a torrent that drenches every bit of his life and Elliot knows he’s lost forever.
Each morning he picks up his umbrella and steels himself against the downpour. Learns to weather the hurricane that is his love for Olivia, only too happy to drown in her.
Twenty three years after the first rainfall, Olivia’s hand is entwined in his, and he follows the siren song of her touch down the corridor as they make their way up to her apartment. She looks radiant in the dim halos of light, and he wonders how he ever survived 10 years of drought.
Elliot breaks the silence first when they reach her door. “Fin and Phoebe, Why do you think they changed their minds?
She shrugs, unlocking it. “Some people are just content with the way things are.” They step inside and she shuts the door behind them, but doesn’t move out of the entryway. Her eyes roam over him, dragging slowly up his body, lingering on his hands, his chest, the pulse against his throat.
So instead of moving further inside, Elliot steps closer into her personal space. “Are you ?'' he asks, voice low, “Content with the way things are?”
Olivia tilts her head, giving him that lopsided smile he loves up through her lashes. “Depends, what did you have in mind?”
They’re older now. A little softer with each other, a little wiser too. There's no need for pretense between them anymore. It’s just the two of them and everything they are, everything they can be together, waiting before them.
Elliot, in that moment, with more than two decades of memories trailing behind him, locks his gaze with hers and steps closer still. Olivia's breath hitches when his hands settle on her hips; it feels like coming home.
Elliot gently pushes her fully against the door. They’re close enough that Elliot can feel the warm exhale of her breath on his cheek. His hand reaches up to cup her face, the pad of his thumb tracing her lips, the ridge of her cheekbone, before settling on the back of her neck. And finally, after a lifetime of waiting, Elliot leans forward and kisses her softly.
Olivia kisses back gently and bruising; destruction and salvation all at once. She pulls him tighter, the other hand moving in his hair. Elliot, in return, surges into her, decades of desire urging him as he deepens the kiss, pushing his tongue into her mouth; Olivia groaning against him.
He’s not sure how long his lips are on hers. It could be mere minutes, or an eternity; but Elliot has more in mind for Olivia tonight if she’ll let him. So he pulls back with a smile and leans his forehead against hers, the answer to her question falling from his lips. “I’d rather show you what I had in mind, If it’s all the same to you.
Olivia nods with a small smile, eyes darkening with desire. “Lead the way.”
He takes her hand in his, pulling her towards the couch. Olivia kicks off her shoes and settles herself into his lap so the two of them are tucked into the corner. One of her arms drapes across his shoulders, the other resting on his chest. He wants nothing more than to kiss her swollen, pink lips again but forces himself to slow down. Before they begin, Elliot needs to know that they’re on the same page.
“Liv I—“ he’s not sure how to start, how to ask for what he wants. To ask for what she needs. “I know what I want.” He says, “And I’m ready to move at whatever pace you set. But I need to know where you want this to go.”
Elliot has never known how to play his hand lightly, he’s never done anything by halves; not his anger, nor his joy, or his love. He knows that what he feels for Olivia was, and always has been more than just attraction. It is something that far surpasses the duty he’d had to Kathy, no matter how hard he’d tried otherwise.
He spent many days and nights in confession letting the unbridled truth seep out of him — that any obligation he felt toward his vows would never be able to compare to the tidal wave of love he felt for Olivia.
But Elliot also knows Olivia. Knows that she’s still dusting off the fragile fragments of her heart and is slowly giving it back to him piece by piece, trying to trust him not to break it again. He, in return, is prepared to give himself fully, to give her what has been hers from the beginning. He also knows that she needs time, and the last thing he wants to do now is fuck it up.
Just by their kiss, Elliot knows they’ve crossed a line already. In all their years as partners they’d never allowed themselves more than a few hugs, a hand on a shoulder, a few lingering brushes. They’re spring and winter, and have spent their entire lives on the verge of melting into each other; both knowing deep down that once the demarcation between them was crossed, there was never going to be any turning back.
“We still have a lot of work to do El,” Olivia says, and God, he loves that she’s calling him that again. “And I thank you for giving me the time I need, the time I will need moving forward.” She kisses him lightly and then moves so her breath ghosts his ear “But if you keep waiting any longer to fuck me, we’re going to have even more work to do.”
Arousal spikes, hot and heavy in Elliots stomach, and he doesn’t need to be told twice before capturing her mouth against his again. This is nothing like the previous kiss. It is rough where the other was sweet, desperate where the other was slow. He moves to her neck next, kissing briefly along the juncture of where her shoulder meets her neck, running his tongue across the divot, and nipping gently with his teeth. A promise for later, of more to come. That she’ll wear more than one reminder of this night on her skin.
Olivia makes a tiny, delicious noise low in her throat that goes straight to his cock. Elliot moves Olivia so her feet are back on the ground and pulls her fully against his chest. One arm is secured around her waist as the other moves from the plane of her stomach to the curve of her breast. Then he slips one leg between hers, pushing her legs apart, providing him with better access.
His tongue flicks across the lobe of her ear before he takes the delicate flesh into his mouth, biting gently, and is immediately rewarded when her breath hitches and one of her hands finds its way into his hair, pulling just a little too roughly. He feels his cock twitch, already straining against the confines of his pants. Olivia stutters out another sigh and begins to move against him in small, concentric circles that drive him insane.
His lips are still close to her ear, voice still low and husky as he asks. “Can you feel what you do to me?” He accentuates his words by pressing his hips into her harder, so there can be no mistaking his desire. The friction pulling gasps from them both.
Olivia takes his hand and pushes it between her thighs, “Are you going to do something about it then?” Without preamble, Elliot pulls the swaths of her dress up past her hips, and rips down the scraps of black lace she has on beneath, smirking. “Did you wear these for me?”
“I wore them so you’d take them off.” She says, bold and brazen in return.
The thickness of Elliots fingers slide into her, stroking gently, then firmer, circling around her clit and back in. His lips part at the slickness of her against his fingers and feels his body react further to the feel of her beneath him.
Her hand slips from Elliots to grip against the armrest and he continues in the steady stroking rhythm, mesmerised as her hips rock gently in time. Growing bolder he applies a bit more pressure and she sighs, arching further against his chest he touches her. The thickness of his fingers slide deeper into her again, pulling a gasp of delight from Olivia as she throws her head back in pleasure.
Olivia’s other hand wraps around his thigh, and he can feel her nails pressing into him, leaving half crescent marks along his thigh. She grinds down again and his hips buck up into hers involuntarily, another gasp falling from his lips.
In his arms, she is everything Elliot thought he'd never get the chance to have. They’d revolved around each other from the moment they met, the tide and the moon. Caught in a great cosmic dance, the push of him, and the pull of her, inextricably linked. He, caught in her gravity, never thought the day would come where he’d be able to hold her in his arms like this, feeling her pleasure surging beneath him and tasting like daydreams against his mouth.
“ Fuck .” Olivia breathes, her body responding with a jerk, mouth falling open in a gasp from the feel of him against her as he curls his fingers further and harder inside her, flicking a thumb across the bundles of nerves. Elliot groans, so hard he is in physical pain and it takes every bit of restraint to not come just from the sight and feel of Olivia clenching around his fingers.
Elliot keeps going. Increasing the rhythm as Olivia’s hips keep moving beneath him, a choked groan escaping her while his hand around her waist moves to her breast. The other thrusts shallowly, then deeper as he crooks his fingers inside her and increases the pressure in her clit, circling once, twice, three times.
She comes with a cry against him, pushing down against his hand and arching against his chest, head cradled in divot of his shoulder as her entire body exhales and shakes with release. She laughs and her breaths come in heavy pants, the only sound to be heard in the otherwise silent apartment. When Elliot looks down, slivers of flushed, pink skin peek tantalizingly out of the top of the high neckline of her dress. She is the single most beautiful sight he has ever seen, and he is as breathless as she is when she finally slumps and pulls his hand away.
He kisses the side of her neck, still hard and aching as she twists around, draping both arms around his neck, letting out a content sigh. He meets her eyes and it strikes him again how radiant she is, flushed and perfect and settled against his heart. He lifts a trembling hand and pushes the curtain of hair aside so he can press a lingering, open mouthed kiss to her neck, groaning in utter desire. Her satisfied sigh reaches his ears and she tilts his head up pressing the heat of her lips to his.
Olivia’s kiss devours him, his hands trace up her hips into her hair that he pulls gently and suddenly he can’t wait any longer. They are still too far apart, the layers of clothes still left between them might as well be oceans. Elliot wants to remove every barrier between them until they merge into one and he never has to leave her side again.
For Olivia, love is more like the sunrise in winter.
It takes its time to make an appearance. Nothing changes when Elliot first enters her life. He’s her partner, nothing more and nothing less. But the more she gets to know him, and the more of herself she shares with him, golden rays of light begin to peek over the horizon.
They split sandwiches, share a desk, share a car; fractions of a life. She learns the cases he can’t shake and the sound of his joy until one day she looks up and realizes what used to be the dark and frigid night is instead illuminated by his presence.
Once she recognizes the sun, color, shades of light, and warmth seep into and become permanent fixtures in the landscape of her life. Elliots smile thaws her permafrost, the shape of him by her side becomes the high noon sun itself, the ferocity he protects her with melting her completely.
Later, when he leaves without a goodbye, he takes all things good and bright with him. She endures his absence, reacquainting herself with the shades of grey and the darkness.
The men who came after are but candles, a spark, a match, a lighter. Small flickering flames that do nothing but remind her of the warmth she lost.
Then Elliot returns to her 10 dark winters later, Olivia’s world tilts on its axis and for the first time in a decade, she sees the dawn.
Now, as the heat of his kisses brand her, Olivia knows there was never going to be anyone else but him. What she feels for Elliot is all encompassing, unavoidable, blinding like the light reflecting off winter snow.
It is everything she never had with Cassidy, with Kurt, with Ed, with any man who came before, because any man who came before wasn’t Him. Elliot had been the standard against which they'd all been weighed and measured, and every single one had been found wanting.
Elliot hips move without conscious thought, grinding in need as Olivia’s spine arches into his hungry kisses. If they don’t move now she is going to end up fucking Elliot right here on this couch. And while that doesn’t sound entirely unpleasant, she’s waited 20 years for this and refuses to let it play out on her couch like they’re two teenagers with no self restraint.
Olivia takes his hand, extracting their bodies that have tangled together like vines and leads him towards the bedroom. They make it only a few steps before their mouths are on each other again. It’s soft and sweet at first, and then Elliot opens his mouth to groan into hers, grasping the nape of Olivia’s neck, tilting her face slightly so he can deepen the kiss.
She spent years tasting him second hand. Chasing the ghost of his lips across shared coffee, the fog of his breath in winter, the bits of him she could collect without ever crossing the delicate line left between them.
This, his lips fully against hers, gasping into her mouth, is enough to nearly undo her again then and there.
The shoes stay in the living room, Elliots jacket and tie get ripped off somewhere past the kitchen, followed by the halfway undone zipper of her dress. Olivia means to undo his shirt slowly, savor every inch of exposed flesh and the muscled planes of his abs as they are revealed, but anticipation gets the better of her and she all but tears the shirt off of him, buttons tearing free and landing on the floor.
Elliot laughs, “I liked that shirt.” She huffs, leaning to press an open mouthed kiss to his collarbone. “I’d like you naked more.”
Elliots hands move up her back as Olivia’s hands reach to his belt. She undoes the buckle as they miraculously make it to the bedroom and her knees hit the back of the bed.
Tugging the belt free, she hooks her finger in the waistband of his pants, moves the other beneath his open shirt twining up his back pulling him close so she can feel the press of him, hard and arching against her. Olivia moves her mouth to his ear telling him in a low, breathless murmur “Take these off. Now .”
Elliots hips buck against hers, gasping. “Is that an order Captain ?” At the title, Olivia surges up to him, capturing his lips again and yanks him down with her onto the bed.
Elliot shucks off the remaining articles of clothing and she sees the heavy, aching fullness of him in its entirety. Fire ignites once again in her core, and Elliot reaches toward her, pulling the zipper of her dress down the remaining inches. The dress cascades on the floor and she lets him see every inch of her.
Elliot stares, taking in the scars that litter her body, the curves the last 10 years have brought. She turns away from him, feeling self conscious, reaching towards the sheet to cover herself again.
But Elliot, as always knows how to quell her fear, her anxiety. “No,” he grabs her hand. Kissing the knuckles, and moving his hand to cradle her neck, pressing another kiss to her temple “None of that.” He whispers, voice hushed with emotion. “You’re beautiful Olivia. All of you, every inch, is beautiful.” His lips capture hers again, and Olivia can’t help the strangled emotion that bursts free in her chest.
Elliot pulls away, eyes never leaving hers “You asked me before, what I wanted.” Olivia says suddenly. “But you never told me. What do you want?'' she asks, breathless.
“You,” Elliot answers seriously, as if it’s obvious. As though the sun rises and sets on the basis that Olivia is important and precious to him. “Everything you’ll give. For as long as you’re willing.”
Olivia’s breath shudders. And it scares her, how effortless it is to collapse into the easy embrace of his love. For as long as she can remember, Olivia has wanted someone who she can share her burdens, her hopes, her dreams, and her life with. And Elliot— he’s her perfect cup of coffee, her calm Sunday morning, the involuntary motion of breathing, her forever.
But Olivia is Atlas, alone and holding the weight of the world. She has borne every burden life has thrown at her on two unflinching shoulders for long enough that sharing her demons, sharing herself, and falling back into who they used to be is an entirely new kind of pain.
Even so, tears prick the sides of her eyes, and she says “I think you have every piece of me already.”
He tugs her closer, and Olivia goes willingly. Happy to go wherever he likes as long as his hands never leave her again. Elliot’s kisses turn from tender to fierce, laying her down on the bed and moving on top of her. His warm palms settle on the fullness of her hips, and she marvels how after 12 years of partnership and 10 of separation, that they can finally touch each other like this. How after more than two decades she can still want him this much.
When the aching hardness of him finally, finally sinks into her, Olivia bites her lip so hard she thinks she might draw blood. It takes her a moment to adjust before she gasps, “Move.” And there’s nothing but the snaps of his hips as he thrusts into her. Her thighs shake with desire. And there is no part of her that he doesn’t fully occupy. Her thoughts, her body, her spirit, everything she is in that moment fully and completely belongs to him.
Olivia’s hips rock to meet his every thrust, in sync now as they always have been everywhere else. Their mouths swallow each other's moans and Olivia’s nails dig into his back. Elliot loves how beautifully she is stretched beneath him, all taut muscles, accentuated curves against his skin. He loves the taste of her tongue against his. How fully she completes him, she always has, without question or effort.
Most of all he loves how this feels intimate, sacred even. The touch of his fingers against her is a blessed anointing, her gasps and sighs a hymnal, her body a sanctuary where he finds salvation. Elliot has spent his entire life worshiping at one altar or another and would happily consecrate himself to her for the rest of his life if she will let him.
Olivia gasps, tilting her hips, hooking a leg around him to bring him close as possible, The peaks of her breasts pebble against the cool air. “ El- “ She moans again as he increases the pace of his thrusts, hitting that perfect spot inside her. Elliot pulls his full focus back to the beauty of the woman before him. Noticing the divots of her shoulder blades, made prominent as her back arches, the gentle curl of her hair and the sharp line of her jaw. Her eyes close and the ghost of a smile appears on her face as she rocks against him and he feels a swell of overwhelming, almost painful emotion in his chest.
Elliot leans down, pressing a kiss to her temple. “ You’re beautiful”, he tells her again, voice strangled against the lump lodged in his throat. He continues, a kiss pressed to the side of her jaw, the hollows of her neck and lower still. One kiss for every year he’s loved her. More still for every scar she endured in his absence.
Olivia’s heel digs into his backside as she moves, urging him deeper inside her with a cry. The intense heat surrounds him as Olivia’s hands pull him nearer, merging their lips. The thrust of his hips increases in pace. The feel of her hot and wet around him makes everything tighten low in his body. The pressure of his straining cock building towards release as he groans deeply. Elliot draws back, adjusting the angle and thrusts again and again until – “Fuck, fuck, fuck, holy shit,” Olivia gasps into Elliots mouth, eyes squeezed shut. She breaks apart beneath him, coming with an unrestrained cry, her body shuddering under his own.
Elliot, as always, follows Olivia right over the edge.
There is a myth about soulmates.
The myth claims that humans were originally created with four arms, four legs and a head with two faces. That Zeus, fearing the power they might wield, separated them completely, dooming them to spend their lives searching for their other half. Humans would never find home without their other half, and would spend generations fighting in search of their missing piece.
Elliot has already found faith. There is no almighty Zeus in the sky, nor on Mount Olympus, and no four legged humans. But Elliot thinks the Greeks might have been onto something. There was a time when he scoffed at the idea of soulmates. Never believing such a pure, holy and absolute definition of love and completion could exist.
He knows better now.
Cradled in his arms, head pillowed on his arm is the other half of his heart. And for once she’s not in danger, he’s not in pain. It’s just the two of them wrapped in each other. Elliot doesn’t need to study Plato's Symposium to know that there is no greater joy than being reunited with her, of loving her and being loved in return.
Elliot twists slightly so he can look right at Olivia, Determined to commit this moment to memory. How he’ll always want to remember the flushed apples of her cheeks, the freckles that litter the bridge of her nose and shoulders, the spot on her neck that he knows will darken with the mark of his kiss. He knows then, that his bones could crumble to dust and the memory of her would still be etched into their ash.
Olivia’s gaze softens for a moment as she meets his, leaning in to press another kiss to his lips. Elliot pours out all his longing from the previous years, and his joy at being hers at last into the kiss. He draws back and finds Olivia’s eyes misted over with tears, just as his are. “Liv,” his voice is a little heavier, brimming with everything he feels for her.
“I love you.” She whispers, voice strained with emotion. But she smiles, eyes glassy with unshed tears. Elliot's eyes widen, searching Olivia’s gaze as she looks up at him. In her eyes he finds no remorse, just love and forgiveness that Elliot knows he doesn’t deserve, and the joy at hearing her finally say it back eclipses anything he’s ever felt.
Swallowing, he raises a hand and cups his thumb to her cheek, brushing gently over the ridge of her cheekbone, catching the tear that has managed to fall free.
“I love you too,” he tells her again. “So much.” Olivia presses her lips together, closing her eyes and turning her head into the caress of his hand. He leans in to kiss her temple, just below her hairline. Olivia smiles, eyes closed, and he draws her closer to him, breathing in the scent of vanilla and bergamot that is uniquely Olivia. And for the first time in his life, Elliot Stabler feels content.
Elliot loves the rain like Olivia loves the sun, and they’re home.