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I Want You to Know

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“She Stays”

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Jesse’s Elementary School Classroom - Late Friday Morning

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Once Sonny was done barricading the door, he went and sat back down with Jesse, who cuddled up close to him.

“You did a good thing, Matt.” Sonny told him. “They’re going to take note of that.”

Matt nodded. “Good. Because now someone needs to do something for me.”

He pointed his gun back at Sonny. “Get your old Captain back on the phone.”

Sonny slowly picked up his cell that rested beside him and called Liv.

XXXXXXXXXXXX

Outside

‘Carisi,’ Liv answered, motioning for Amanda to remain silent. ‘They all made it out. The kids are safe and Ms. Fisher is on her way to the hospital now.’

Matt snatched the cell from Sonny. “Is Lauren going to be ok?”

Liv, realizing she was now talking to the shooter/hostage taker, thought carefully before responding. ‘I don’t know, Matt. But we all hope so. You letting her out to get some help…that was a good thing, because now she has a chance.’

“Since I got her out and I let out some of the kids, I need something in return from you all.”

Lt. Banks, as well as Fin and Velasco, rejoined Liv. He noted Amanda’s presence and wasn’t happy about it but refrained from commenting on it in that moment.

“I want to know that I’m not going to get charged for shooting her or for anything else. In writing.” The young darker haired male said to her. “Then I want access to a vehicle and to be able to freely leave and drive up north to Canada, where I’m from. Once I know I can get these things, I’ll let everyone go.”

Sonny sighed as he listened to Matt’s request, knowing it was outrageous and not something that would ever be agreed to and that if Matt thought even for second they were trying to bluff him this could all end disastrously. So when he heard Lt. Banks entertaining the idea of honoring his requests he was shocked.

‘Matt, you’re speaking with Lt. Banks.’ Banks said, responding before Liv could get the chance. ‘We’ll work on all of that. But how about in the meantime you let some more of the kids out?’

Liv, not liking Banks’ approach, exchanged glances with Fin, Amanda and Velasco, who also all looked equally dismayed.

“No.” Matt said flatly. “That’s not happening.”

Sonny motioned for him to give him the phone, which he surprisingly did without much pushback.

“Liv are you still there?”

‘Yes, Carisi,’ Liv said as she jumped back into the call.

“I’m gonna talk with Matt for a while.” He said to her. “I’ll call back again soon.” Sonny then ended the call and set the phone down next to him.

“What does the counselor think he’s doing?” Banks asked Liv.

Before the Captain could respond, Amanda angrily yelled out.

“What he’s doing is trying to talk to this guy calmly and logically in an effort to keep our daughter and everyone else in that room safe instead of spewing out false promises to him that aren’t going to be kept and will likely get them all killed!”

She shook her head and stormed off. Liv motioned for Velasco to follow her and stay with her, which he did.

Banks sighed. “He is not a detective anymore and even when he was one he had no experience in hostage negotiation.”

“He isn’t.” Liv admitted. “And you’re right, he didn’t. But he’s smart. He’s a people person. Carisi’s already gotten him to let the teacher and some of the kids in the room out. Give him a chance to work this.”

“Fine.” Banks said as he furrowed his brows. “I’ll give him a little time. But I’m the one in charge of this operation and if I don’t see some sort of progress in a timely manner, we’re going to do things my way.”

Liv nodded. “Ok.”

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Classroom

“We have nothing to talk about.” Matt said very matter of factly to Sonny. “I want what I want and there’s nothing you can say that’s going to change my mind.”

Sonny nodded. “Fine. But holdin’ all these innocent kids here in this classroom, isn’t going to help you get what you want.”

Sonny gently removed Jesse from his grasp, stood up and cautiously walked up closer to Matt. “Like I told you before, I’m an ADA and ex NYPD. And my wife…she’s a senior detective in one of Manhattan’s most elite squads. I’m the only and most important bargainin’ chip you need.”

Matt pressed his lips together as he thought long and hard over Sonny’s proposition before finally, much to Sonny’s surprise, agreeing.

“Ok.” He said to the ADA. “They can all go. Except for one.”

Matt then nodded his head in Jesse’s direction. “She stays. That way I know you won’t try any funny business once everyone else leaves.”

He then motioned for Jesse to come over to them, which she did slowly.

“What’s your name?”

She looked up at him and quietly said, “Jesse.”

Matt smiled at her and placed his free hand, the one not holding the gun, on her shoulder. “Jesse and I are going to hang out here while you unblock the door and let everyone else out.”

Sonny’s heart began to race so he tried to take in a few deep breaths in an effort to maintain his composure, but was visibly struggling as he walked away from Jesse and once again began removing the chairs from the door.

When he finished, Matt motioned for all of the kids, except Jesse, and the last few adults to exit the classroom, which they did quickly. Once they were gone Matt directed his attention back to Sonny.

“Lock the door and barricade it back up.”

Sonny nodded as he locked the door and grabbed a chair. As he did he noticed Matt’s attention briefly drift to the nearby window. It was at that moment Sonny discreetly unlocked the door. He then began setting up the chairs in a strategic fashion; in a manner that unbeknownst to Matt would give a small person Jesse’s size a clear pathway to the door.

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Outside

As Liv, Fin, and Banks stood together, anxiously waiting for word from Carisi or some other positive sign, they saw the remaining children and adults come running out of the front of the building and hurried over to them.

Amanda, who was standing with Velasco by a police car several feet back from where the others were, also spotted them.

Her eyes frantically searched the bunch for Sonny and Jesse, but didn’t see them.

“They’re not here.” Amanda said as she wiped the tears from her eyes. “Sonny and Jesse are the only ones he didn’t let out.”

She buried her head into her hands and cried softly while Velasco put his arm around her shoulder and rubbed up and down in an effort to comfort his partner. “They’ll be ok.” He tried to reassure her.

Meanwhile, Fin went to talk to the adults who had just exited while Liv and Banks attended to the children and got a headcount. After a few minutes they all joined back up.

“So everyone’s out but Carisi and Jesse.” Liv said sighing as she ran a hand through her hair.

“I just got done speaking with one of the mom’s, Lisa.” Fin relayed to the captain and lieutenant. “Apparently, Carisi convinced Matt that he was the most important bargaining chip needed and to let everyone else out, which the guy agreed to. Except for Jesse. Because he probably thinks Jesse—“

“Is the only thing that’ll keep Carisi from making any rash, sudden moves against him.” Liv said cutting him off. “Because he wouldn’t want anything bad to happen to her.”

Banks whispered to the Captain. “Carisi’s got an hour to figure this out.”

Liv sighed and nodded.

XXXXXXXXXXXX

Classroom

Just as Sonny was finishing up, he heard Matt shout.

“Jesus Christ, did you just pee yourself!?” He asked Jesse, as he looked down at the puddle by their feet. “Aren’t you like seven? What seven-year-old still pees themself?”

“A scared one being held kidnapped at gunpoint does.” Sonny snapped at him as he walked up to a crying Jesse, bent down to her eye level and rubbed her shoulders in an effort to comfort her. “Let me talk to her. Alone.”

Matt, who had grown frustrated with Jesse’s incessant crying and the peeing incident, relented. “Fine. You have two minutes. Calm her down.” He then stepped away from the two and headed in a corner in the opposite side of the room. He was out of ear shot but Sonny was very conscious of the fact that Matt still had the loaded gun pointed in their direction.

“I’m s—sorry I…peed myself.” Jesse stuttered out in between sniffles.

Sonny shook his head and pulled her in for a hug. “It’s ok Jess. You don’t have to apologize for that.” He said as he held her tightly and stroked her hair gently.

Sonny pulled back from her, placed his hands on her cheeks and wiped away the tears that were falling down with his thumbs. “Now I know you’re scared, but I need you to listen very carefully to what I’m about to tell you, ok?”

Jesse nodded.

Sonny took in a deep breath and exhaled slowly. “I love you so so much. And I will never let anything bad happen to you. I will do anything and everything to keep you safe, you hear me?”

Jesse wiped her nose and nodded again.

“I don’t want you to look but the door is unlocked. And I cleared a path for you. If at any point you hear me tell you ‘run,’ I want you to run out that door as fast as you can and I don’t want you lookin back for me. You keep runnin’ until you get out the school. You hear me?“

Jesse shook her head. “But I…don’t wanna leave w—without you.”

Sonny fought hard to blink back his own tears and remain stoic. “You can and you will if you hear me say the word Jess. You have to. Ok?”

She nodded and hugged him. Sonny hugged her and held for a little while longer before Matt finally came back over to them and split them up.

“Times up.” He said as he pulled them apart. Matt then motioned for Sonny to sit on one of the kid’s desk while he stood by Ms. Fisher’s desk with Jesse.

Sonny furrowed his brows as he carefully contemplated his next move.