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Loved You From The Start

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Liv,

IAB’s making me go UC. It’s that or we lose our badges and maybe our pensions. Not supposed to tell you this. Not supposed to tell anyone.

Fuck Tucker. Fuck IAB. Fuck the NYPD.

Kath’s leaving me because I won’t just let them take your badge. Our badges over a good shoot.

My kids understand. I’ve talked to the older ones. They’ll keep in touch with you best they can.

I’m coming back for you, Liv.

Semper Fi.

El

Six months after the letter had been shoved under her door. Olivia had never missed her partner more. She headed out after writing up her report on the Jake Stanton; Bayard had invited her out for drinks, thinking they could both use a break.

The invitation to drinks had turned into a later dinner. Olivia had grabbed a cab to meet him. It was a little out of her way but she wasn’t ready to go home alone.

Olivia had just sat down at the restaurant when Bayard texted. He’d gotten stuck at his office, dealing with the fallout from the shooting at the courthouse. Of course. She glanced up to find the waiter watching her. “Never mind, turns out I’m not having dinner this evening.”

Leaving the restaurant, Olivia wandered down the block to find a little bar. More her style. More dressed down. She wanted a drink and to blend in with a crowd. People who weren’t trying to make an impression.

Olivia wanted a drink. She waved the bartender over only to be surprised when he set a beer in front of her. It was her preferred brand. “You psychic?”

“Courtesy of the man at the end of the bar.” He nodded in the general direction of the man then wandered off to deal with a customer.

Olivia lifted her glass and turned to salute the man. Oh my god. “Oh my god.”

Elliot.


An Elliot that Olivia had never had the pleasure of seeing in all of their years as partners. He had a beard. It’s trimmed but adds a scruffiness that her partner never had. He was in jeans and a grey shirt that had three buttons undone. The shirt was tight.

Tight enough to show Elliot had clearly been spending more time in a gym.

Olivia grabbed her beer and slipped off her stool. She slipped onto the one next to his. The crowded bar offered her the perfect excuse to sit closer than necessary. Her leg pressed against his. Their arms touched when she placed her drink on the bar. “Thanks for the drink. I didn’t catch your name.”

“Joe.”

“Joe?” Olivia peered at him, drinking in the sight of him for the first time in months. “You don’t strike me as a Joe.”

Elliot winked at her before taking a sip of his beer. “What brings you to this seedy joint?”

“Rough day. Hoping to blend in and forget about the man I’ve been missing.” Olivia found freedom in spilling her truth. Maybe it was watching the devastation from Jake’s death. Life was so short. She wasn’t surprised when Elliot motioned for her to elaborate. “Lost my best friend. I didn’t realize how much I would miss him until it was too fucking late. So….I’m having a drink after a particularly bad day on the job, wishing I had five seconds to tell him.”

“Just five?” He looped his arm around her shoulders. “I’d bet this prick who left you….I bet he misses you even more. Bet he stays awake at night, thinking about you. Dreams about knocking on your door. Hoping you’ll welcome him into your place. Into your bed.”

“E…Joe.” Olivia glanced at her barely touched beer. “You live around here?”

“Got a little place a few blocks away.” He shifted his hand to rest on the back of her neck. She closed her eyes at the familiar weight of his touch. She breathed harshly through tears that sprung up unwanted.
“You should be careful, picking up strangers at bars. They might follow you home.”

“Good.”

Tossing a few bills on the table, Elliot practically dragged her out of the bar. Olivia stumbled after him. She had so many questions that faded away when he led them into an alley, shoving her up against a wall.

“El,” Olivia whispered. “This is definitely not your place. This is an alley.”

He stared desperately into her eyes. “I’ve missed you so fucking much. Like half my heart was ripped out of my body and I couldn’t get it back. I just….I need to know we’re on the same page here.”

“What page?”

“That I love you. Have loved you longer than I should’ve.” His arms wound around her, crushing her into him.

“You’re an idiot.”

“Liv?”

“How the hell did you miss that I’ve been in love with you all along?”