“Never Really Over”
Amanda’s Apartment - Late Friday Afternoon
“Thanks again for taking me AND for bringing me home.” Amanda said to him as she rummaged for her apartment keys. “I know it’s really out of your way.”
Sonny shook his head. “It’s no problem.”
Amanda furrowed her brows as she continued looking around her purse for her keys. “Ugh I hope I didn’t leave them at the precinct.”
Sonny stood quietly watching her for a few more moments before pulling his set of keys out of his coat pocket. He looked through them and then inserted the key to the apartment in the door and unlocked it.
She was surprised he still carried it around, but grateful. “Thank you.”
“I hadn’t realized I still had it on my key ring until now.” Sonny said as he took the key off and tried it to give it to her.
“Maybe you should keep it.” Amanda said to him. “I’m sure mine will turn up and it might come in handy sometime. With the baby at some point.”
Amanda internally cringed as she thought her reasoning for him keeping the key over in her head. Because she knew there probably wasn’t really a need for him to have it, but nevertheless she still wanted him to keep it.
Much to the blonde’s surprise, he agreed.
“Ok.” Sonny said as he took the key and placed it back on his ring.
“Sienna should be back from picking the girls up from school any minute if you want to stick around for a bit and see them.”
Sonny smiled softly. “Yeah, I’d like to.”
Amanda nodded and the two walked inside together and settled down in the living room.
“You can have these two.” Amanda said as she handed him the ultrasound images and they sat down together on the couch.
He grinned as he stared down at them. “Thanks.”
She fixed her mouth to say something, but was interrupted by the sounds of Jesse and Billie coming in with Sienna.
Though both girls were pleasantly surprised to see their mom home from work earlier than anticipated, they were much more surprised to see Sonny sitting with her in the living room.
“Sonny!” Both Jesse and Billie yelled out in unison as they dropped their backpacks and quickly yanked off their jackets and shoes.
Sonny smiled brightly and placed the photos on the end table nearby as both Rollins girls ran over to him.
He scooped them both up together in his arms and hugged them tightly.
“We’ve missed you!” Jesse declared as Billie nodded her head in agreement.
“Not as much as I’ve missed you two.” He said as he squeezed them both a little tighter before finally setting them down.
Amanda smiled, though a little sadly, as she watched the mini reunion between Sonny and her daughters. Seeing how excited Jesse and Billie were to see him after such a long time of minimal interaction made her feel guilty for keeping him away from them.
She quickly stood up and thanked and said goodbye to Sienna. Amanda then picked up and started putting away the girls’ things.
“Did you come here just to see us?” Billie asked hopefully.
Sonny exchanged a quick glance with Amanda, before smiling at Billie and nodding.
Billie grinned back at him and both her and Jesse began chatting away as they caught Sonny, who was listening very intently, up on everything that had been going on in the world.
After a short while Jesse’s eyes spotted the sonogram images on the end table and picked one up. Jesse, who’s pregnant teacher had recently shown her class a similar photo, knew exactly what it was.
“Mom, are you having a baby?” She asked as she held up the sonogram.
Both Amanda and Sonny’s eyes grew large as they briefly stared at each other, neither knowing how to respond. Because the baby’s heartbeat was easily detected, Amanda knew her risk of miscarriage was pretty low at this point. Still, she hadn’t planned to tell the girls about the baby for a while. She was hoping for more time to think of a thoughtful way to let Jesse and Billie know about it, as she was unsure how both of them would react to the news.
But the cat was out of the bag now. It was obvious Jesse already knew the answer to the question and was just waiting for her mother to provide the details.
Amanda ran a hand through her hair and motioned for the girls to sit next to her on the couch. She then directed her attention to her oldest daughter.
“Yes, Jesse.” Amanda said to her as she tucked a loose strand of the girl’s blonde hair behind her ear. “I am going to have a baby.”
Billie smiled. “When?!” She asked excitedly.
“It’ll be a while.” Amanda told her as she gently rubbed the little girl’s thigh. “Not until July.”
Though Billie’s reaction was enthusiastic, Jesse’s was much more reserved and her questions kept coming. The next one was directed at Sonny. “Are you the baby’s daddy?”
Sonny took a deep breath and exhaled slowly as he sat down on the sofa beside her. “Yeah, Jess. I am.”
“Does that mean you’re going to come back home and live with us again?”
Sonny sighed and shook his head no. “Mom and I haven’t really worked out the details yet, but the baby will probably live mostly here with you three and then stay with me at my place the rest of the time.”
Jesse frowned and went silent.
Sonny attempted to find something to say to comfort her, but before he could get any words out Amanda responded.
“Jesse, Sonny told me the other day that whenever the baby is staying with him both you and Billie can too.”
Sonny, appreciating the fact that Amanda took him up on his offer from a few days ago, gave her a small smile and then followed up her words.
“And you know what Jess? You and Billie can start staying with me whenever you want. We don’t have to wait until the baby gets here for us to begin spending time together again. Does that sound, OK?”
Billie happily nodded, but Jesse remained quiet for a long while as she appeared to take in everything that was being told to her.
“What do you think Jesse?” Amanda asked curiously.
Jesse sighed and got up from off the sofa. “I just wish we could all be together again.”
She slowly headed toward her bedroom. Billie then got up and followed her.
Amanda sighed and fixed her mouth to say something to Sonny but was interrupted by his cell ringing. She looked down when he did and saw that it was Meghan.
“If you have somewhere to be, you should go.” Amanda said to him. “I’ll talk to her. She’ll be fine.”
Amanda then exited the living room and headed down the hall toward Jesse and Billie’s bedroom.
Sonny looked down at his phone again, hit ignore, and sighed. He wanted to go check on Jesse with her, but thought it would probably be best to let Amanda handle it so he stood up and quietly left the apartment.
Precinct - Monday Morning
Amanda and Sonny hadn’t talked the rest of the weekend but she did text him early Monday morning to let him know that she planned on telling Liv that she was pregnant. It was still pretty early but with the girls already knowing and the squad being short staffed with Velasco being temporarily reassigned on an undercover narcotics gig, she thought the sooner she let her Captain know, the better.
Amanda knocked on her boss’s slightly ajar door. “Liv, do you have a minute?”
Liv nodded and motioned for her to come in.
Amanda stepped in and slowly closed the door behind her. She then sat in the seat directly across from Liv’s desk, took in a deep breath and exhaled slowly.
“Is everything alright?” Liv asked, sensing her detective’s nerves.
Amanda nodded. “Yeah, it’s just…there’s something I need to talk to you about.”
“Ok.” Liv said, eying her curiously.
Amanda remained quiet for a brief moment and then told her Captain the news. “I’m pregnant. About seven weeks.”
Liv raised her eyebrows in shock and, having trouble gauging whether or not Amanda was happy about it, decided to come right out and ask her. “Wow. So how do you feel about that?“
“Well a third baby was definitely not something I thought I wanted.” Amanda admitted to her honestly. “But once I found out and had some time to process it I realized I do want this and though it wasn’t planned, I’m really happy it happened.”
Liv smiled softly and fixed her mouth to respond but was interrupted by Amanda.
“I was a little worried to tell you because I know the timing isn’t great since we’re already down one detective with Velasco undercover and now I’m going to have to be on restricted duty.
Liv shook her head. “Amanda we’ll be fine. I put in for a temporary replacement to fill in for Velasco. We’ll just keep whoever it is around until after you’re back from maternity leave.”
Amanda nodded. “Hopefully you’ll get someone good.”
Liv chuckled. “Well I asked for an experienced, empathetic detective so knowing my luck I’ll probably be given someone like Carisi.”
Amanda smiled a bit, but remained quiet.
“Does he know?” Liv asked a little worriedly, knowing that even though him and Amanda weren’t together anymore, the counselor likely wouldn’t take the news well.
Amanda sighed and ran a hand through her hair. “Yeah he knows. It’s umm…his baby.”
A surprised looking Liv nodded. “So are you two back—“
“No.” Amanda said, cutting her off. “Not together. Baby’s here as a result of us getting caught up in a moment. That’s it.”
Liv nodded her head slowly and remained silent for a moment before speaking.
“Have you two talked about trying to work through your issues?” Liv asked her. “Obviously there is something still there.”
Amanda sighed. “There is.” She admitted to her honestly. “But I just don’t know if we can work through them. I mean, the baby thing isn’t really a factor anymore but we were disagreeing on cases and that trickled into our personal lives. And the issue surrounding the girls was a big one that we STILL don’t see eye to eye on. We were fighting about it all again just a few days ago. I don’t want the girls and now this new baby growing up in a house where arguing is constantly going on.”
She paused for a moment before continuing. “Besides, Sonny he…he started seeing someone.” Amanda said to her sadly.
Liv was about to respond when they heard a knock on the door. “Come in.”
“Sorry to interrupt.” Fin said as he entered. “But Carrie Mitchell and her mother are here.”
Liv nodded and then turned her attention back to her detective. “Time to find out what she knows.”
Amanda nodded and both quickly stood up, followed Fin out of the office, and headed toward the interrogation room.
Sonny’s Office - Monday Afternoon
Sonny, who had a meeting with Barth later in the afternoon, was working feverishly on the plea deal he was planning to bring to her and her client when he heard a knock on the door.
He looked up and saw it was Meghan.
“I know you’re busy so I won’t stay.” The blonde reporter said to him as she entered with a bag in her hand. “But I was nearby in a lunch meeting at Frank’s and I know how much you love their Italian mix so I got you one.”
Sonny gave her a small smile as he took the bag with the sub in it from her and set it down on his desk. “That was really nice of you. Thank you.”
Meghan nodded. “Ok I’m gonna go.”
She leaned in to him and the two kissed, just as Liv walked in.
“Sorry, I didn’t mean to interrupt.” Liv said. “The door was open and I—“
“It’s OK Liv.” Sonny said cutting her off. He then introduced the two. “Meghan this is Captain Olivia Benson, commanding officer of SVU. Liv, this is Meghan Moore, a reporter for The Times.”
“It’s nice to meet you Captain.” Meghan said as she extended her hand out to Liv.
Liv shook her hand and smiled softly. “Likewise.”
“I’ll catch ya later.” Meghan told Sonny and then quickly exited the office and closed the door behind her.
“New girlfriend?” Liv asked as she walked over to his desk and handed him the file she had in her hands.
Sonny shook his head. “No. Her and I are seein’ each other but…we haven’t put a label on it.”
Liv nodded and then changed the subject. “Amanda told me about the baby this morning. Congratulations.”
Sonny gave her a small smile. “Thanks. I’m excited about it. Even though the situation surrounding it isn’t ideal.”
“Figured if you ever had a baby you’d be with its mother?” Liv asked, curiously.
Sonny sighed and nodded. “Yeah. This definitely isn’t the way I imagined it. But forcing somethin’ that isn’t right and wasn’t workin’ just because of the baby isn’t a good idea.”
“It’s not.” Liv said to him, adding. “But are you really sure it isn’t right?”
Sonny sighed. “Liv—“
“It took you and Amanda so long to get together. When you finally did you both were so happily engrossed in each other. Nothing the other did bothered you. It was blissful, right? But then that blissful bubble got popped. The honeymoon stage ended, real life started and you realized the other isn’t as perfect as you thought and conflict arises. Every couple goes through this Carisi. The ones that survive it are the ones who put in the work. You and Amanda? You didn’t do that. The going got tough and you both got going.”
Sonny rubbed his temples. “I…we…did try.”
“But did you really try everything you could?” She asked him seriously. “Like counseling? Both together and independently? Mediation?”
Sonny remained quiet for a minute before finally answering. “No. We didn’t.”
“Don’t you think you owe it to each other…to Jesse, Billie, and the baby to do everything you can?”
He closed his eyes and rubbed the bridge of his nose. “Yes but…a part me thinks if we were really meant to be together we wouldn’t need to take it to that level and that this all wouldn’t be so hard.”
Liv nodded slowly. “But if you really thought it was over, that there was no hope, then why haven’t you made more of an effort to move on? There’s a reason you don’t want to label whatever it is your doing with that reporter. And that she happens to look a lot like Amanda? That’s not a coincidence.”
Sonny sighed and, at a loss for words, stayed quiet.
“I know you have that meeting with Barth in a couple hours so I won’t keep you. I just hope you think about what I said. While I may have overstepped my bounds a bit, I’m only telling you all this because I’m rooting for you two. And so are a lot of other people. No one wants to see your story end this way. Deep down I don’t think you or her do either. So don’t let it.”
Liv then quickly left his office, closing the door as she did.
Sonny stared aimlessly ahead for a long while before closing his eyes, sinking into his chair and sighing.
Precinct - Late Tuesday Afternoon
Liv’s words struck a bit of a chord with Sonny, but he hadn’t had too much time to sit and think about it as both he and the squad had been busier than normal.
Sonny, having spent the first half of his Tuesday in arraignment court, had a short break before he needed to head to Riker’s to meet with a public defender and his client to discuss a deal for a case he was handling for the Homicide Bureau. So he took the opportunity to drop off a search warrant Fin asked for earlier in the morning.
As he entered the precinct he immediately spotted both Fin and Amanda, who was in the middle of a phone call, in the squad room. He quickly made his way over to Fin and handed him the warrant.
“Took you long enough Carisi.” The seargent said as he grabbed his coat and keys to a cop car.
“I know, I’m sorry.” Sonny said to him. “Busy day today. CSU meeting you out there?”
Fin nodded. “Yeah.”
“Hopefully you find what you need.”
“So do I.” Fin said as he headed toward the elevators.
Amanda wrapped up her phone call just as Fin exited and appeared very distressed. Sonny immediately headed over to her.
“Is everything OK?” He asked worriedly.
A teary eyed Amanda shook her head. “No. My dad had a heart attack.”
Sonny placed his hand on her back and rubbed up and down in an attempt to comfort her. “Amanda, I’m so sorry. That’s terrible. Is he going to be OK?”
Amanda shrugged. “I don’t know. It wasn’t a widowmaker or anything, but it wasn’t a minor one either. I need to get down to Atlanta and help him. He has no one. But my mom isn’t going to be able to help with Jesse and Billie.”
“Why not?” Sonny asked furrowing his eyebrows.
“If it were summer it’d be fine, but Jesse and Billie both have school. I can’t pull them out for 2-3 weeks and bring them up to Rockland. And my mom can’t come down here because she has Mason and he’s in school up there. God, I don’t know what I’m gonna do.”
Sonny pondered the situation for a moment before finally telling her, “I can take care of Jesse and Billie. For as long as you need me to.”
Amanda shook her head. “No I can’t ask you to do that.”
“You didn’t. I’m offerin.’ Because I want to help. You trust me with them, don’t you?”
“Of course.” Amanda insisted. “It’s just I know you have a lot going on. Work wise and personally and—“
“Don’t worry about that.” Sonny interrupted. “I’ll make it work. We’ll be fine.”
Amanda blinked back her tears, stood up and hugged him tightly.
“Thank you.” She whispered into his ear.
He nodded and held her closely in his arms.