Summary: On Andrea's first day at Sun Hill, in a conversation with DI Manson; he suggests they drop the "Sir," when they are off-duty. What if the reason for this was something completely unexpected? A slightly different twist on the Andrea/Neil relationship. AU.
Notes: A short one-shot with the potential to develop into a much longer story in the future. Just a little something I couldn't get out of my head. If you do read it let me know what you think and whether or not I should continue it and expand on this story line.
"Hello Sir," Andrea greets, when Neil approaches her at the drinking party up in the CID office.
"PC Dunbar," Neil replies professionally, discreetly scanning the people around them for eavesdroppers to their conversation. Realising that he needs to be careful in what he is saying, he follows up his greeting with a compliment on her work; "good work today," he says, looking at the drink he is pouring to hide the emotion in his eyes.
"Thank you Sir," Andrea replies, maintaining the professional charade.
Looking up from pouring his drink, he looks directly into her eyes, and trying to maintain a casual attitude he says, "I think we can drop the Sir, when we are off-duty." On his last words, he quickly disappears into the crowd, knowing he's given her a subtle hint and well aware of her eye's following him as he crosses the room.
It's several hours after the impromptu office party that Neil turns up at Andrea's flat door, knowing that she will probably be expecting him after their earlier conversation, even though to an outsider it seemed especially neutral and professional.
Silently letting him in the two ensure they are safely inside before letting down their guards.
"When you said you had been assigned to a station here in London, I never would have suspected that it would be Sun Hill." Neil comments, not sure on how to begin the conversation they really need to have.
"I never realised the connection until I ran into you in the file room this morning," Andrea replies, equally as nervous about the situation they now find themselves in.
"We can't afford for anyone to find out about us," Neil states, the difficulties of the situation they now find themselves in; "It would put us both in a rather difficult situation."
"I know," Andrea confirms, "but we can't change the situation either; so where do we go from here."
"I'm not giving up on this, us," he clarifies, "but we need to be careful. We can't afford for anyone to find out we've been seeing each other for years without anyone's knowledge. Half of Sun Hill still thinks I'm married to Phillipa, so if it gets out it would be very difficult to say the least, and that's without even going into the rank differences."
"So we don't tell anyone." Andrea states simply, "We will have to be careful about how we are seen together at work, try to avoid working too closely together if we can help it. No one will ever figure us out if we are careful. We are both trained in undercover work and it's not like either of us are the most sociable of people, so it's not like we need to worry about them following either of us home."
"Ok," Neil confirms, knowing they probably won't be able to hide their secret relationship forever, but for the time being that it is best that they do their best to hide it from the people they work with.
"What I can't figure out is why you would accept a demotion to a probationary PC, when we both know you could easily pass as being a DC?" Neil asks.
"I need to be out on the streets if I have even a slight hope of finding this guy and bringing him down. I figure looking so young, pretending to just be transferring in from another station would raise too many questions. It's not ideal, but it's the only way to maintain a believable cover."
"I guess," Neil agrees with a sigh, settling into the sofa and pulling Andrea into his arms.
"Hey," Andrea tries to cheer him up, running a finger down his chest and playing with the buttons on his shirt, "at least with me living down here now you won't have to keep driving up to Scotland on your days off; and we will get to see a lot more of each other."
"Well there is that," Neil agrees with a reserved smile, giving in to the urge to kiss her thoroughly.
It doesn't take long for the two to become lost in their insatiable passion; moving to the bedroom where they can give in to temptation. They spend the rest of the night making love and creating new memories, knowing that their lives have just become a whole lot more complicated.