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First Flight Home

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Hospitals had never been Olivia’s favourite place to be. Nothing good had ever come from being at one. Working with special victims, she’d spent far too much time with victims while they relived their trauma.

Evidence gathering was necessary but invasive.

It often added to the trauma.

The doctors and nurses meant well. They hadn’t understood her reticence to speak. She’d stayed silent through the exam and while her injuries were patched up.

They’d tested her hands (and Elliot's) for gunshot residue. Her clothes had been exchanged for hospital scrubs. Olivia noticed Mark along with two other people in suits standing outside of her hospital room.

They were keeping her for observation until the booze and drinks were safely out of her system. She sat silently. Her gaze fell on the man sleeping in the chair beside her bed.

Elliot hadn’t moved from the chair even when the doctor asked him to leave.  Olivia had asked him to stay. He was apparently staying.

End of story.

Fin stepped into the room after a knock on the door. He glanced once at Elliot then came over to the bed. “Baby girl.”

Olivia grabbed Fin by the hand. “I’m okay.”

“Nah. You aren’t.” He shook his head. “Beach house is a mess. CSU is still processing the place. Lewis left a mess of hurt and pain across the state. IAB wants your statement. Barba’s not going after Elliot. They’re declaring it self-defence based on the evidence.”

“So why’s IAB sticking their nose in?” Elliot sat up in the chair. Nap apparently over.  “Don’t talk to them without a lawyer, Liv.”

“I’ve got nothing to hide.”

“Yeah, and last time you said that about IAB, Tucker tried to arrest you for murder.” Elliot made what he obviously considered was an excellent point. “I’m messaging Mark. We’ve got defence counsel on call for the firm.”

“Take the advice, Liv.” Fin gestured toward Elliot. “We’ve got your back. No matter what.”

Olivia sank back into the hospital bed. “When can I get out of here?”

“Tomorrow.” Fin set a bag on the end of the bed. “I managed to sneak into your place to get some clothes. Cassidy was sniffing around the precinct, by the way. Might come to see you here.”

“Fin.” Olivia glanced around him to see a smirking Elliot. She decided not to worry about Cassidy. He hadn’t been concerned about her. “Lewis made me listen to his message.”

“What message?” Elliot shifted out of the chair to sit on the edge of the bed.

“Brian. We were going out. Left a message.” Olivia remembered her stomach dropping when Lewis had played the messaging. Laughing at her. “I knew I was alone. No one was coming.”

“Not true.” Elliot took the hand Fin wasn’t holding. “I’m just sorry I wasn’t here sooner. Don’t worry about Cassidy.”

“El.” Olivia had to smile at the familiarity of his unnecessary jealousy. “Where am I going to say?”

“Kathleen coordinated with Mark. There’s a safe house in the city that we don’t use. Nice brownstone. You’ll hate it. Has a backyard with actual grass.” He teased. “We can crash there since your apartment is a crime scene.”

“We?” She scowled at Fin when he laughed. “You’re not helping.”

“Cassidy’s on his way up. Amanda just texted me.” Fin ignored her groan. “Maybe I’m not helping. Tell you what I am doing.  I’m keeping my camera ready, so I can film this car crash for Munch. He’ll be pissed that he missed it.”

There was a blissful moment of silence. Olivia watched the door to her room. The curtain was drawn to block the view from the hallway.

A measure of privacy from prying eyes.

Her rescue had been all over the news. Her doctor had mentioned the press had been camped out since her arrival. She was not looking forward to leaving.

Maybe they’ll let us sneak out from another exit.

I do not need my face plastered all over the news.

There was a knock. Then a shout. Then a scuffle by the door. Olivia glared at the two men laughing. She’d forgotten the private security stationed outside of her room.

Cassidy certainly didn’t know about them. He tended to be bull-headed at the best of times. And he hadn’t been at the beach house or hospital to see them.

“Elliot? Please? Tell them to let him in.” Olivia pleaded with him. She decided to go with emotional blackmail when he kept laughing. “Do you really want me to get out of my hospital bed to deal with it?”

“Low blow, Liv.” Elliot stalked over to yank the door open. “Cassidy.”

“You know this dick?”

From her vantage point, Olivia could see Mark had Cassidy in a headlock. Elliot waited a full minute before telling them to let him go. He strolled back over to sit on the edge of the bed

“Could you seem less pleased?” Olivia whispered.

“What the fuck is he doing here?” Cassidy finished straightening up his shirt from where he’d been roughed up a little. “Really, Liv? Stabler?”

All sense of a good mood fled from Olivia. She started off the bed only to have both Fin and Elliot reach for her. Cassidy grumbled under his breath while they fussed.

“I’m fine. I’m fine. I can stand up for a second.” Olivia tried to shove their hands off. “El.”

“Doctor said you need rest.” Elliot insisted. “Fin? Why don’t you have a chat with Cassidy?”

“C’mon, Liv.” Cassidy eyed Fin, who’d immediately stalked toward him. “He abandoned you.”

She grabbed for Elliot’s hand a second too late. He was off the bed with Cassidy slammed up against the wall in seconds. “Can you all remember we’re in a hospital room? Please? Mark?”

Elliot’s boss heard her call his name. Thankfully, they hadn’t closed the door. He stepped into the room and quickly assessed the situation.

“Why don’t we go for a walk?” Mark grabbed Elliot by the shirt and dragged him off Cassidy. He glanced over at Fin. “Trust you to keep an eye on her.”

“Of course.”

“Brian.” Olivia didn’t have the emotional energy to have this conversation. She wished he hadn’t come to the hospital. “Why are you here?”

“I was worried. We had a date.”

“That you bailed on. Again.” Olivia didn’t blame Cassidy for her abduction. She’d have been angry even if she hadn’t been taking by William Lewis. “I’m not going to be with someone who’s always half-in and half-out of my life, Bri. I think you should go.”


“She wants you to go, man.” Fin stepped around the bed and began ushering him out of the room. “Maybe steer clear of Stabler on the way out.”

“Always fucking Stabler.” Cassidy slammed the door shut behind him.

Fin snorted in amusement, then turned back to Olivia. He dragged a chair close enough to sit beside the bed. “You want to talk about what happened in the house.”

“I already told you.”

“Baby girl. I’ve got your back. That man flew around the world to save you. I don’t fault him for doing what I wanted to do.” Fin glanced over his shoulder toward the closed door. “Tucker’s going to have questions. He knows Stabler was there. You know those two are like oil and water.”

“The evidence backs up our story,” Olivia insisted.

“I know.”