This fic is really a character study and not a story exactly. It's just one long run on sentence (almost). I wanted it to have a breathless quality to it. It "reads" better out loud … but don't get fired over it ok? This is Eames' pov with Purgatory being a critical event. I think I'm just about finished writing about Purgatory. Hopefully you'll cut me some slack. - Thanks for reading. - Dix.
No copy write infringement is intended or implied. These characters belong to Dick wolf etal.
Great together. That's what everybody said; quietly to themselves. Goren and Eames. Eames and Goren. It was a legendary partnership. Their clearance rate in the squad was unrivalled. Solid forensics, credible forthcoming witnesses and the right perp and Goren could have the suspect confessing in front of a room full of witnesses. Goren found the patterns, the underlying meanings and the hidden desires and he made it look easy. And it's not as if Eames was along for the ride. She matched him step for step. She was a methodical investigator and she was no slouch when it came to witness interviews. When she was asking the questions, Goren was evaluating the responses. She had a knack for finishing his sentences and jumping to the right conclusions. She led the chase like a hound dog on the trail of a wily criminal fox. Great together.
What nobody said, whispered or hinted at though was what nearly everybody assumed. They must be sleeping together. And if they aren't right now, they must have in the past or perhaps they just want to. It was a hazard of the job when a man and woman were partnered. There was no getting around the unspoken assumptions. It was best to simply ignore them. They didn't go away, but they wouldn't no matter how you reacted. Nearly everybody thought it, but nobody really thought it through, because the idea was ridiculous.
Alex had been married to a cop. She knew what it was like to get the phone call. The call that shatters your dreams and screws up your ability to think about the future. The call that you spend half your time dreading and doesn't feel anything like what you expect it will. It turns you into a zombie and severs all your connections. She wouldn't do it again. She wouldn't date a time bomb and that's what a cop boyfriend would be. He'd be a time bomb. She vowed never to think about another cop in that way; not even Bobby Goren.
Goren knew it. He'd known early on in their partnership that she had defences like the Enterprise has shields. He knew that the boundary between public and private between personal and work was a huge crocodile filed moat. She used sarcasm to keep the water level high. He knew to stay well back and for the most part, he did. Where he could give way, he did. The job was everything. He addressed her by her surname. She was senior. It was a way for him to show respect. He handed over the keys whenever they travelled by car. But somewhere along the line, everything shifted and tilted just a little and he was no longer content to stay well back. He found himself over reaching to protect her. He found himself slowing his pace just enough to allow her to be first out the interview room door. He wanted to have her back. He would never leave her unprotected in the presence of a perp. He went out of his way to meet her for a drink after work or breakfast before. It wasn't just the job anymore. She was everything.
Eames noticed the change, but what could she say? Quit holding the door open for me. Quit following my lead. Quit showing me respect in the squad room. It would sound crazy. It would sound like she was accusing him of some intention that she'd invented. "Sorry", he'd say, but it would screw everything up. It would be the worst mistake. She liked having a partner that she could count on. There'd never be more than work between them no matter how he felt. Never. And so she let him be.
Unfortunately "never" isn't quite as far away as you might think when you say it, but Eames didn't understand that until she'd pointed her Glock at his head. Dirty cop. This thought took her breath away and interfered with her ability to think. When he turned the gun sideways and lowered it, one of the uniforms in the room secured it. Somebody else put the cuffs on him and somebody else tapped her on the shoulder and she finally holstered her own gun. There was no air in the room and so with nothing in particular to do she turned, went out and got into the car.
Staring him in the eye over the top of her gun, she had to admit that her feelings for Bobby Goren had changed. She sat in the car and tried to work it out. Somewhere between investigations, arrests and reports, she'd fallen for him. She'd worked tirelessly on the inside trying to get the right people to say the right things about his value as a police officer while he was on suspension. Not because he was her partner, although there was truth in that. Not because he was a good detective, although there was truth in that. Her motives had been purely selfish. She'd done it all because she couldn't bear to continue, if he didn't come back to MCS. She watched as he was led out to the van. There was a uniformed officer on either side of him. He shuffled a little as he walked. He looked broken and tired. She felt only compassion and concern. Alex Eames knew that the moat was empty, her shields down and her life public and private were broken and scrambled. She couldn't lie any longer. Dirty Cop, Partner, Friend. Alex Eames knew she loved him. Bobby Goren had messed with her head and with her heart.
It was like Stockholm Syndrome. He'd taken her captive along the way and she'd fallen in love with him. She could hardly think for what she felt. The very idea that some how she'd fallen for a cop, again, and not just any officer, but one so devoid of ethics that he was able to draw her into his charade, made her question everything.
She spent nearly every working day with him and those they didn't spend together, they were in touch by phone. She knew what he liked to eat for breakfast, where he worked out, which cops he loathed and what he did at Christmas. He knew how she liked her coffee, where her parents lived and almost to the penny, how much money she had put away for her next vacation. But she'd never guessed that his mother's death and Tates and suspension would compel him to drop his guard and be pulled across the line.
Back at the precinct, she drank a cup of coffee and ate a sandwich. She wasn't hungry but she thought that maybe low blood sugar might be affecting her emotions.
"Eames", Captain Ross called to her from his office door. "Come with me"
Ross was accompanied by a uniformed office and it took her a minute to work out that they were headed for the cells. They rounded the corner and the cells came into view, but she stayed well back. She couldn't raise her head to look Goren in the eye. She knew if she looked at him, Bobby would see the truth. He'd know how she felt about him. If he knew the truth, she'd be undone.
But she was undone anyway, because what her boss wanted her to see was not Goren's guilt but his innocence and it was one revelation too many. The dawning realization that his arrest had been a giant fraud and she'd been put into the position of holding a gun to his head with her finger on a slippery trigger, by his unwillingness to put her in the picture gave a focus to her jumbled emotions. She'd lied him out of countless holes, smoothed the waters and said every positive thing to keep him on the job. His way to repay this devotion was to cut her off. He sacrificed himself, jumping onto the altar in some last ditch attempt to get respect and to earn a badge and gun in a nightmare undercover scenario without back up or reinforcement. And by sacrificing himself, he'd also sacrificed her.
"Sorry, that's all you have to say to me?" It wouldn't do and she let him know it. For 6 hours, Alex Eames was in love with Bobby Goren. Never again, she thought as she walked out of the room. NEVER AGAIN. It was a lie of course, but saying it made her feel so much better.
…Thanks for reading. - Dix.