So, this is my first ever Rizzles thing. Nothing special, but I was gonna burst if I didn't write it down.
Sorry if it's sucky, hope some people enjoy it anyway :p Reviews are nice, compliments and criticism both welcome ;)
"Knight in Cheap Kevlar" - Uh, 'borrowed' from the title of a Geonn Cannon story I read a long time ago. It was just too perfect not to include (:
Maura sat vigilant in Jane's lounge room, gun held high and ready, until the cavalry arrived. She peered out through the blinds to see the patrol car on the street and followed Frost as he did his rounds through the apartment, watching closely. Jane had trusted Maura with her safety and she wasn't about to fail the detective.
As they passed by Jane's bedroom, Maura stopped to listen at the door; she was sure she'd heard something. She cracked the door open a little, letting in the light from the hall, and peeked inside to see Jane mumbling in her sleep, her covers thrown almost to the floor.
"Dr Isles, what is it?"
Maura was startled for a moment, almost having forgotten Frost's presence at the sight of Jane's distress. She instinctively pulled the door quietly closed, shielding Jane from Frost's eyes.
"I just want to check on Jane. I'll catch up."
Frost merely nodded and turned back towards the living room. Maura waited until Frost was out of sight before opening the door once more and slipping into the room.
Jane lay sprawled in her black briefs and grey singlet, limbs askew and a deep frown creasing her forehead. Maura felt a pang in her chest. Jane always struck her as something of a warrior – a vest her shining armour and a pistol her gleaming sword. She was a knight in cheap Kevlar. But here she lay, so vulnerable and troubled, no trace of her usual cockiness and attitude to be found.
Maura abandoned her 4-inch heels at the door and padded across the carpeted floor to Jane's bedside. She switched on and dimmed the lamp by the headboard, seeing more clearly the signs of fatigue on the brunette's face. Reaching out slowly, she pushed a strand of hair gently off of Jane's face.
"Jane?" Maura whispered, her own brow furrowed deeply in concern. Jane moaned, as if in pain, her head twisting from side to side.
"Jane!" she repeated more forcefully, her hands accompanying her voice with a shake of Jane's shoulders. The detective began to stir and then suddenly shot upright, her eyes wide with terror as she panted for breath.
Maura placed a hand beneath Jane's chin and called her name once more as she tried to get the detective's eyes to focus on her own.
"Jane! It was just a dream. Only a dream, sweetie. You're safe now," she whispered. "You're safe."
Jane's breathing grew calmer, her heart stopped pounding and tears threatened to spill as she gazed into Maura's eyes, the sight of them being the only thing grounding her, anchoring her to reality.
Maura cupped Jane's face in her hands, thumbs stroking her cheeks, brushing back her hair. In an instant Jane's features crumpled and a scarred hand flew to cover her mouth as a loud sob escaped from somewhere deep inside. She vowed to keep herself together, refused to break down. But when Maura drew Jane close, engulfing the other woman's lanky frame within her soft embrace, Jane's resolve fled her and she openly sobbed against Maura's neck.
Maura felt tears stinging her own eyes as she held the brunette as close as possible and rocked her back and forth, one hand tangled in dark, wild hair while the other rubbed comforting circles on Jane's back.
They stayed that way for almost an hour while Jane's sobs quietened to sniffles, then only gentle breathing, Maura never once relinquishing her hold or ceasing her movements. Seeing this new side of Jane had frightened her. She'd seen Jane terrified, saddened, vulnerable. But never had she witnessed such a collapse of all the shields, all the barriers the detective usually kept in place. Maura had some shields of her own, protection she couldn't imagine ever being without; truly Jane had to have witnessed the deepest depths of despair to have relinquished her defences. Maura wondered at the trust Jane held for her, to have revealed so much in her presence.
When Jane finally pulled back from Maura's embrace, her tears spent, she seemed embarrassed and just a little ashamed. Maura offered a sad smile, wiping at the dried tears on Jane's strong cheeks and brushing back her hair, much like a mother comforting a young child.
Jane was looking even more exhausted than she previously had and offered no resistance as Maura guided her back down onto her bed, tucking the covers close around her. Jane lay on her side gazing at Maura through heavy eyelids and Maura rested a hand on Jane's upper arm through the blankets, not yet ready to completely break their physical contact. When those dark eyes finally closed and the loud, even breaths began to slow, Maura rose quietly from Jane's side and turned off the lamp.
But as she moved to leave, a hand flew out from beneath the covers and took hold of hers. Maura turned back to look at Jane, though she could barely make out the other woman's outline in the dark.
"Don't leave me." The quiet plea seemed to echo in the dark.
Maura felt her heart crumble; the detective's fear and desperation were evident in her small voice. No words were needed as she carefully climbed over Jane to lay on the bed beside her, never letting go of her hand. She wrapped herself around Jane from behind, pulling the taller woman in close and placing a gentle kiss on the back of her head.
Jane sighed, feeling, somewhat illogically, safer than she had in a long time. If Hoyt or his apprentice were to show up right then and there, Maura would be as defenceless against him as Jane herself in that moment. She wouldn't be able to fight him off if he caught the two of them in sleep.
But Maura held power that Jane could only dream of; she didn't fear Hoyt. Not in the almost paralysing way Jane did. With Maura at her back, Jane needn't fear her night-time demons. Maura's mere presence would keep away the monsters, keep away her boogieman.
The next morning, Maura carefully extricated herself from Jane to answer the nagging in her bladder. After a quick trip to the bathroom to relieve herself and freshen up, Maura checked again to make sure Jane was still resting peacefully before heading for the lounge room.
Frost was still awake, fresh mug of coffee in hand, flipping through the papers and case files he'd been studying all night. A loud rap on the door startled them as they were discussing some strategies.
Frost rose from the couch, alert, gun in hand. But it was Korsak's voice that came from the other side of the door and told Frost to lower his weapon. Maura's first words to Korsak when she opened the door were to keep quiet, but Korsak's emotions were running high, his protective nature in full gear.
He immediately accused Frost – loudly – of trying to keep news of Hoyt a secret from him. The argument quickly headed in the same direction it always did; fighting over who was Jane's better and closer partner. As both men's voices escalated, Maura glanced quickly in the direction of the hall, her only concern for Jane's rest. She tried to interject, but to no avail.
The ridiculous argument coupled with lack of sleep and frayed nerves pushed Maura over the edge and seemed to flick some kind of switch.
Maura's command wasn't loud, but it was so out of character that both men were stopped in their tracks. Maura looked incredulously between the two men and pointed in the general direction of Jane's bedroom.
"Her life is in danger, again, from a deranged serial-killer-sociopath who's, who's calling the shots from inside of a prison! And the two of you are comparing the size of your penises?"
Maura's words strung closer together as she felt frustration welling up inside of her, so that her statement and question were expelled in a single breath. Frost and Korsak began to object, but Maura forced them to reconcile and seal it with a handshake.
The damage was already done, though, as Jane shuffled down the hall in sweatpants and a shirt, running one hand through her wild mane while the other attempted to rub the sleep (or perhaps lack thereof) from her eyes.
"Hey, what's all the yelling?"
Maura smiled to see that Jane had regained her characteristic moodiness, but also noticed something else besides; when Jane recognised the papers strewn about the room as case files and reports she became fully alert, the detective in her coming alive. Her fatigue was replaced by determination.
The determination to conquer her fears, Maura realised.
Her heart warmed and her faith renewed, she moved into the kitchen to prepare Jane's morning caffeine hit. Nothing could erase what she'd seen last night. She could never pretend that she hadn't glimpsed, for a moment, the depths of Jane's soul. She'd never see Jane quite the same again, with the knowledge of what lay beneath her tough exterior, but she'd discovered a new strength in Jane this morning...Perseverance, and the will power and determination to overcome her darkest demons.
Jane sat on the arm of her couch and looked over Frost's shoulder to read the file in his hand, intense concentration written across her face.
She's back! Maura silently cheered as she approached Jane with a warm mug. Jane turned at the gentle touch on her arm, her eyes softening immediately as she gratefully accepted the beverage Maura handed her.
"Thank you", she said quietly, her voice still huskier than usual from sleep. When Frost and Korsak threw a quick glance in Jane's direction, they saw her thank Maura for the coffee. Only Maura was privy to the look in Jane's eyes, the expression on her face, which strained to convey her deepest gratitude to Maura for rescuing her in the night.
Maura's heart seemed to swell, and she nodded in understanding. Jane's free hand found hers and she squeezed it gently in support, her thumb skimming over Jane's scar. She pulled her hand away to wrap it around Jane's shoulders, staying close by her side.
Jane's first true smile of the past 12 hours found its way to her lips and eyes.