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Jane winced as the doctor forced her to contort her body into another unnatural position. “Just try to hold it there for as long as you can” the perky little redhead said with a much too friendly smile. Jane could feel sweat drip down her back and her muscles were shaking uncontrollably. “Ouch! I’m made of flesh and bone, not malleable clay, damn you!” Jane forced through clenched teeth. If possible little red imp looked even perkier at the comment.

“Jane! Language! I have to apologize for Jane, but it seems that being cooped up all day is making her forget her manners” Jane nearly toppled over as Maura stepped around her and gave her a light tap on the rump with the tablet in her hand. With a look that clearly said “BEHAVE” she resumed her self-appointed task of capturing every embarrassing pose on her tablet and taking meticulous notes with a stylus. “Why exactly… do you… need to document… my torture Maura?” Jane asked between labored breaths.

“I’m trying to ensure that we know which exercises should be done, how they should be done and how long they should be done” Maura replied quickly turning away from Jane as she felt a heat rise from her neck into her face. Though the explanation was plausible it wasn’t the truth. The exercises were simple enough to remember and the therapist had already provided her with diagrams and detailed descriptions via email. In truth Maura needed some ammunition to use against Jane. Plus having a few candid snapshots of Jane wearing her black sports bra and tights was just too good to pass on.

Jane was exhausted. It felt as if she had run a marathon. As she pulled her sweater over her head she smiled at the memory of actually running a marathon with Maura. Running for P.U.K.E. As always she gave a silent chuckle at the charity’s unfortunate name. She was still smiling as she stepped back into the therapist’s office. Maura was clearly engrossed in something the therapist was explaining.

“Ah there you are!” little miss Red Smiley Pants exclaimed causing Jane’s smile to freeze in place. “Let me quickly show you what I’m talking about” she said to Maura stepping into Jane’s personal space without warning. Jane stiffened and involuntarily took a step back, but not in time. Little miss Red Smiley Pants grabbed her left arm and lifted it straight causing Jane to winch as the stiffening muscles screamed against the action. “I have a few major concerns. As you can see Dr. Isles abduction still causes pain.” Moving Jane’s arm back and forth she continued “Protraction and retraction also occurs at a decreased angle. Mainly I’m concerned about the rotation and circumduction of the hand. I also noted that there is a marked difference between the opposition of the two hands. Jane being ambidextrous the difference really shouldn’t be that pronounced.” The doctor said. Maura was nodding and a concerned frown creased her forehead. She took Jane’s hand and idly patted it while considering the doctor’s words.

“Have you had any time to look over the documents I sent?” Maura asked.
“Indeed I have. I’m familiar with Doctor Brent’s work and in all honesty I think that the structure of her therapy sessions may just be what Jane needs. I know that she usually only works from referrals let me make a note and then I will refer Jane officially to her” little miss Red Smiley Pants smiled sweetly and reached for a pad on her desk.

Maura cleared her throat and said “That won’t be necessary. I’ve already spoken to Em… Doctor Brent, she’s agreed to take on Jane and clear her schedule for the next couple of weeks.” Jane’s confusion grew as the smile slipped from little miss Red Smiley Pants’ face. “You know Doctor Emily Brent? Wow!” She exclaimed. To Jane it seemed as if she could see green envy rise and settle into the therapist’s eyes. “You do get around, don’t you?” She remarked. After an uncomfortable moment of silence she sighed and looked apologetically at Maura. “I’m sorry Doctor Isles. That was uncalled for. Well… then I guess that’s all… please schedule a follow-up in three weeks and then we will know if Jane can be cleared for active duty.”

“What was that about?” Jane demanded as soon as they left the consultation room.

“What was what about?” Maura asked a tiny frown still creasing her brow.

“Who is Brent? What has Brent got to do with me?” Jane asked and without giving Maura time to respond “And what exactly does she mean with ‘You get around’? That sounded like an insult!” Jane rolled her shoulders trying to release some of the tension that had settled there during her physical therapy session.

“Oh, Em? Well she’s an old friend that has a private therapy practice. She works exclusively with high profile government officials that had been hurt in the line of duty.” Maura explained.

When she didn’t elaborate Jane prodded “And?”

As they got into Maura’s car Jane noticed a slight flush tingeing Maura’s cheeks. “And?” Jane prodded.

“Em has a bit of a reputation.” Maura admitted. She glanced at Jane before continuing. “She is the best there is Jane. She also just happens to be one of my oldest friends and after hearing about your shooting she offered her services.” Maura felt her blush deepened and rummaged through her purse trying to find her keys. Not finding them she sighed. “My keys are missing” she sighed at Jane.

“I got them Maur” Jane said smiling at the look of consternation on Maura’s face. “I forgot my bag, remember?” Jane fished the keys out of her gym bag and handed them over to Maura. “Now are you going to tell me about this friend of yours and her ‘reputation’?” Jane asked again.

Maura unlocked the car and got in behind the wheel. After Jane got in and settled in the passenger seat she reached to start the ignition. Jane’s hand on her wrist stopped her. “Maur?”

Sighing in defeat Maura looked at Jane. “Emily Brent is considered a womanizer by most people who know her. She is rich and flashy and I hate to admit it, but totally vulgar when it comes to the ladies” Jane watched as a deep flush spread from Maura’s neck into her cheeks. “I think that the little doctor was implying that I… that I was one of Em’s… uhm… conquests.” She finally got out.

Jane stared at Maura. “Conquests?” Jane burst out laughing. “Oh, Maura! That just made my day! I can only picturing that little red imp imagining you, Maura Isles, and some other woman doing the nasty.” Jane was shaking and laughing having difficulty catching her breath. Maura looked down at her hands not willing to face Jane. When Jane didn’t hear Maura’s laughter she sobered and looked enquiring over at Maura. “Maura? Are you okay?” she asked concerned that something was terribly wrong.

Maura finally looked up into Jane’s eyes and nodded. “I’m fine Jane, nothing’s wrong.” She said unconvincingly.

“You really shouldn’t worry about what some hussy thinks of you.” Jane said plainly assuming Maura was upset to be categorized as a conquest of some woman. “She obviously doesn’t know anything about you Maur.”

Maura looked at Jane considering what response would end the discussion without further awkwardness. “Thank you Jane” she finally said hoping her answer would indicate that she really was concerned about what the therapist was thinking of her.

“So when does therapy start with the amazing Doctor Em?” Jane asked with a smirk.

Maura smiled. “Well we leave on Sunday morning and she will probably want to start working with you on Monday”

“Leave? Where exactly will WE be going?” Jane asked suspiciously.

“Em has a place on the water in Martha’s Vineyard.” Maura replied.

“Wow! That must be nice, working from the Vineyard.” Jane said.

“Actually she has practices in Los Angeles, Miami and New York. Her place in Martha’s Vineyard is her holiday home” Maura explained. “When we spoke she offered to help you with the rehabilitation, but she is currently on sabbatical.”

“So she is going to work on her holiday?” Jane asked incredulously.

“Yes.” Maura said simply. “I’ll be taking some time off from work as well. It will give me time to catch up with some reading and old friends at the same time. I have to say I’m quite excited at the prospect of seeing Em… uhm… them again.” Maura continued.

“Just when were you planning to inform me about your little impromptu holiday and my ‘rehabilitation’?” Jane asked a little annoyed at the fact that Maura just assumed that she would be fine with her taking over her life.

At the sound in Jane’s voice Maura glanced at her. Clearly something was bothering her. She glanced around and found an open parking space. Pulling into it and switching off the ignition she turned to Jane. “What’s wrong Jane? Are you not feeling well?” she asked in concern.

Jane was struck by the obvious concern in Maura’s eyes and she felt bad for snapping at the petite M.E.
“Maur, I’m fine. I’m just frustrated that you hadn’t discussed this with me before you went ahead and planned the little trip.” Jane said earnestly.

“You are frustrated at home. I can see that it is killing you sitting around all day. I just thought you would appreciate getting away from it all. If it is not something you want to do I can call Em and let her know that you won’t be joining me. I didn’t intend to presume. I just thought you would like the time away.” Maura said.

Jane sighed. “I really would like to get away Maura. Ma is hovering like a lazy fly the last couple of days. Sometimes it feels if I can’t breathe. Thank you for thinking of me and sorry I snapped.”

“So we’re going?” Maura asked.

“I guess so Doctor Isles.” Jane said smiling at the pure excitement Maura couldn’t contain.

Maura looked into Jane’s eyes and swallowed before starting the car again. Knowing that the couple of weeks away may change their lives forever.