LOCI belongs to Dick Wolf etal. No copyright infringement intended or implied.
Bobby gives Alex a gift. Has he lost his mind or his heart? This story is told entirely from Alex's point of view. Thanks to likeit who demanded more fluff and less angst. Although it occurs to me that it's not very "fluffy" to begin with. And thanks to cifan who helped with the research. All errors and omissions are my own. - Dix.
Bobby came back to his desk shaking his head. Eames glanced up from the computer screen and caught his expression. "What's up?" She asked.
"You're gonna be pissed." He said.
She raised her eyebrows and cocked her head. "Holiday schedule's posted." He said. It was a month before Thanksgiving.
Eames sighed loudly. "Just not Christmas Eve." She said. "Tell me I'm not working Christmas Eve."
"Sorry." He said pulling out the chair at his desk and dropping into it. "We're both on the schedule: Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and the 26th too."
"Jeez, Bobby. I thought you said you didn't break any hearts in personnel this year." Eames closed the laptop with a snap and pushed it away.
Bobby shrugged and looked away. "It's not that." He said finally. "I wanted New Year's Eve."
Eames leaned in scowling. "What does that have to do with me?" She asked. "We're not joined at the hip. We take different days off all the time."
"Ah actually," Bobby said lowering his voice to a whisper and avoiding her gaze. "I requested it."
Eames leaned back in the chair. Her expression hardened. Bobby looked her way. She bit her lip and stood up. She leaned forward palms on the desk. "You're saying you screwed up my holiday on purpose?" Her tone was low and threatening.
Bobby swallowed hard and nodded once. Eames shook her head slowly, then without a word stalked away towards the vending machines in the hall. He watched her go.
She came back slightly calmer and with every intention of somehow changing the unchangeable schedule. And if that didn't work, she'd call in sick. She'd drop her cell in the toilet. She'd change her name, but she was not, absolutely not, missing Christmas with her nieces and nephews. It wasn't happening.
When she got back, Goren's desk was clear and his binder was gone. Propped against the cup which held her pencils was a rectangular green envelope. In Goren's tidy hand, it said "Alex". She sat down and looked at it without touching it. She cast a glance around expecting to see him in some corner, watching, but he wasn't in sight.
She sighed then and snatched up the envelope, tearing at the seal and pulling out the card inside. It was a Christmas card and it wasn't even Halloween. On the cover was a single yellow star over a manger scene. Inside the pre-printed sentiment said, "It's always merry and bright when you're around."
He'd never given her a Christmas card before. They'd never given one another gifts. Inside he'd written, "I hope this makes up for Christmas" and signed his name. A triangle of tape anchored a rectangular ticket to the inside of the card. She turned the card to read the ticket. She had to read it twice before she believed it. The ticket was admission to easily the best New Year's Eve bash in the city. Giorgio's on the Park. Renowned for its fine dining, live music and extraordinary location and scenery Giorgio's was the most sought after location for special occasions. Her parents hoped to go there to celebrate an anniversary one day and it was on her own wish list. It was something to be hoped for, desired even, but never attained.
She released the breath she'd been holding and considered. One ticket. Goren had arranged for them both to have the evening off. Clearly he had the other ticket and was expecting her to go as ~ as his date? If the imprint on the ticket was to be believed, he'd spent a thousand dollars on both tickets. A thousand dollars of ready cash Goren couldn't begin to have. Hell she'd have trouble coming up with that much to blow on a single evening.
It didn't take her long to figure it out. After all Alex Eames was one of New York's finest. There wasn't any doubt. Robert Goren had finally lost his mind.
Thanks for reading. More to come as I edit the other chapters. - Dix.