A/N: Posting chapter one really got me in the zone, so I'm updating already. Let me know what you think. :)
Tracking down Martin Lavers for the second time actually proved easier for intelligence than the first time. He had continued to show up for work even after his interaction with the police. When Hank went to select two people to pick him up, Jay had politely yet insistently requested that he and Erin be the partners to bring him in. Hank looked Jay firmly in the eyes and barked "You go to the gym, you pick him up and you bring him here. Don't pass go, don't collect £200 and don't do anything stupid." Jay clenched his jaw as hank spoke but nodded his head when his boss finished and then turned on his heel to leave the bullpen. Hank glared at Erin, so she quickly left and followed her partner out to the car. By the time she had got out of the district, Erin found Jay impatiently waiting for her in the passenger seat. Once in the car and on their way to the swimming pool, Erin glanced at her partner and jokingly said "I'm surprised you let me drive you know… I mean I'm happy about driving and I'm super happy that you've finally accepted your role as my subservient house husband." She lightly chuckled as she finished her sentence. But when she noticed the Jay hadn't responded, Erin snuck a peak at Jay and saw how tense he was. So Erin moved her left hand so that it rested on top of Jays right hand which was gripping his thigh. When he felt her touch, his muscles instantly relaxed and he slowly turned his hand over so that he could hold her hand, clutching it as if it were his lifeboat. They both stayed like this until they pulled up to the swimming pool. Once she had put the car in park, Erin brought their joined hands up to her lips and gave his hand a light kiss. It was a moment of intimacy that they usually didn't express while at work, but Erin felt that the situation warranted it. She saw how much calmer Jay looked once she had released his hand and she knew she had done the right thing. Her Jay - not the one people see at work but the one she knows from their private time together - was shy, and he needed approval and support and especially love. As difficult as her childhood was, Erin knew Jay suffered as well. Perhaps not as obviously but the way he was raised affected their relationship and it meant that Erin had to make sure that he was sure that she had faith in him and his abilities. They both got out of the car, walked into the building and headed straight for the swimming pool.
When they got pool side, Erin and Jay spotted Lavers in the water being very hands on with the young boys. Neither partner had any qualms about announcing to everyone that Lavers was a criminal. When they moved closer to where Lavers would hear, they yelled, "CPD - we have an arrest warrant for Martin Lavers." Lavers looked up at the pair and made his way out of the pool. He slowly made his way over to his towel and then wandered over to the detectives. As soon as Lavers got to the partners Jay roughly turned him around and put a set of handcuffs on his wrists while Erin read Lavers his rights. Lavers looked around and saw all the kids and the parents with worried faces, so he attempted to assuage their concerns by gently saying, "Everyone don't worry. It's all a misunderstanding. I'll be back before you know it." Erin and Jay walked Lavers to their car, but he seemed confident that the detectives still couldn't scrape together enough evidence to arrest him. Throughout the whole journey he said nothing, but his face held a smug grin. The partners walked the suspect into the district and took him straight into the interrogation room. Just before they closed the door, Jay turned to Lavers and said, "Oh by the way, we found your little storage locker," then he immediately slammed the door not waiting to see the suspect's response.
Erin was stood in her kitchen, making herself a cup of herbal tea when she heard a knock at her door. When she opened it, Erin saw her boyfriend standing before her. But not her usual charming and playful boyfriend, but the man that sometimes comes out from the shadows after a particularly hard case or a day that triggers him or even just a fight with his brother. This sad and vulnerable man was who Erin found on her doorstep, so before even inviting him in Erin wrapped her arms around him and held him close to her. As Erin opened her mouth Jay mumbled into her hair, "I know I said earlier that I wanted to be alone, but I just couldn't do it…I just really need to be around you tonight." The sentiment made Erin smile because even though she knew her boyfriend was hurting, she was glad that he sought her out for relief rather than his old way of drowning his sorrows. After their extended hug, Erin grasped Jay's hand, led him into her apartment and sat him down next to her on the couch. Erin sat cross legged and then turned so she was facing her boyfriend. Since his admission of needing to see her, Jay remained silent. Even when Erin reached over and touched his arm, Jay's eyes remained fixed on the floor. Erin realised that she would have to start if she wanted him to talk. She gently said, "Jay," to try and get his attention. She waited until he lifted his eyes to look at her before she continued. "I'm totally fine if you don't want to talk. We can just relax, maybe watch a game…snuggle. But the fact that you came here tonight after telling me you wanted to be alone lets me know where your head is at. So I'm ready to relax if that's what you want, but I'm also here to talk or even just listen if that's what you need." Erin could see Jay processing all that information, and she knew it was late and she knew he was starting to spin out, so she was prepared to wait until he was ready to respond. After a few minutes he quietly said, "I…I want to talk, I just… I don't know where to start." She wanted to interrupt him and tell him that he could start wherever, and she would listen to the whole thing but if she cut him off, she was certain that he would stop completely. So instead of interrupting him, Erin kept her mouth shut. After a short pause, Jay continued, "This case was really hard for me… you know that…you could see it. Even Voight could see it. And I hate that. I hate that I'm so …. I want you to know everything about me but at the same time I like what we have, and I don't want anything I tell you to change that and I just…I want to be the Jay you met in the bullpen, not this broken guy. Not the me who can't even manage to string together a couple of sentences about why cases like this get to me so badly. But they do and I just … I." When he started to choke up at the end, Erin could tell that Jay had lost his composure and wouldn't regain it any time soon. Not only could Jay not get any proper words out, his knee had started to bounce up and down and his hands started to shake and get fidgety. Two of his tell-tale signs that he was heading towards an attack. Erin saw where he was headed so went to her cupboard and retrieved the weighted blanket. A purchase Erin had made after Jay's last attack at her apartment. That night had left her feeling useless, so she did a little research and came out with a weighted blanket which is meant to calm the sympathetic nervous system. When she got back to the couch and laid the blanket on top of him, he gave her a questioning look. She lifted her eyebrows and said, "It's meant to help. So could you try it? … for me." He gave her his best attempt at a smile, even though she could tell he still wasn't all there, and then said, "I'd do anything for my girl." As he finished speaking, he gently pulled Erin down, so she was next to him and held her close.
The feel of the cold sheet next to her woke Erin up later that night. She opened one eye and looked at the digital alarm clock on her bedside table. 2:47 am. Erin realised that she must have fallen asleep in Jay's arms on the couch and that he must have carried her into bed for her to have woken up where she did. She wondered where her boyfriend had got to when she heard the shower. Erin got out of bed and walked into the bathroom as quietly as she could. The sight of Jay standing in the shower with the water from the shower head pounding onto his head broke her heart. Only once she was close enough did she hear his stifled sobs under the noise of the water. Erin quickly shed her clothes, stepped into the spray and wrapped her arms around his torso. Jays whole body tensed when he heard the door of the shower open and close. But once he felt her touch, he turned around and crushed her against him, sobbing into her shoulder. They both stood there not moving until he managed to get a few words out. The both of them then quickly dried off and put on some warm clothes before sitting on the edge of the bed. "I'm sorry I left you in bed alone but I," he began to explain his actions, but Erin cut him off and said, "It's fine Jay, it's…" but then Jay cut Erin off and carried on explaining himself, "It's not fine Erin. I'm sorry... just please accept my apology and let me explain." Instead of speaking though Erin just nodded and let him continue, "I woke up on the couch with you in my arms and everything felt okay. I looked at the time and I saw it was late so carried you to bed. But then when I laid down my heart started racing and my head got fuzzy. So I got up and went to get a glass of water. But when I looked at my hands and they were stained with blood." Suddenly Jay stopped speaking and without needing to look at him, Erin could tell he was struggling to tell her the whole story, so to encourage him to going she weaved her fingers through his, hoping that just a little of her touch would keep him talking. Jay felt reassured by her holding his hand and managed to keep talking, "When I saw the blood I freaked completely. I wasn't in your apartment, but I wasn't really anywhere else, not the bullpen, not my old house, not even the desert. I felt like my brain was playing tricks on me and the only thing I could think to do was wash that blood away and before I knew what had happened you were standing behind me in the shower." He had said everything on one breath, and Erin could tell it was because although he wanted to tell her, he also didn't want her to see him this vulnerable. Instead of continuing their conversation like she actually wanted to do, Erin just crawled under the covers and patted the space next to her because all Jay needed in that moment was to feel her near him and know that she wasn't going to go anywhere. They both laid down in bed, as close as they could get to one another while also having enough space for all of Erin's pillows. Just as she was beginning to drift off, she heard Jay softly say, "Thanks for being there for me today." She turned over to face him and even though she kept her eyes close she gave him a small smile and replied, "Always." Erin fell asleep quickly after their exchange, but Jay continued to stay awake for some time, just holding his girlfriend close.