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Fanfic: New Perspectives

Title: New Perspectives
Author: VegaWriters
Pairing: Sara/Grissom
Rating: Teen
Spoilers: "Empty Eyes"
Disclaimer: The CSI’s mentioned herein do not belong to me and I make no money from them. Desrea Grissom, however, is a character that I created and she does belong to me, even if I make no money off of her.
Thanks to: Denna - she didn’t know she was going to end up being a beta for this. But she jumped in like a trooper and also gave me some good nitpicky points.

Summary: “They named her Elise.”

I don’t look up when he comes back into the room, I don’t need to. He’s changed - worn khakis, which I would throw out if I could get away with it, and one of those old Hawaiian-style shirts that is part of a collection that somehow takes up an entire drawer of his dresser. Each one has a story, so I don’t tease him about keeping them.

He hands me a steaming mug of tea. The scent of chamomile and catnip and lemon filters up into my nose and against my will, I’m relaxing. “They named her Elise.” I say instead of thank you. He knows what I’m referencing and he nods, letting me talk. He worked that case, my daughter’s case, the one that he’s still telling me to not take the blame for. But she was here, looking for me, and the killer we think we caught, has been released on a technicality. “Elise.” The mug of tea is warm in my hands, a strange contrast to the chill in the rest of my body. “I hate that name.”

“What would you have named her?”

At first, I’m taken aback by the question. I hadn’t expected anything vocal from him; he’s been almost completely silent since the lab. Yet, the name comes out of my mouth as easily as if I’d had a script in front of me. “Jennifer, but I’d have called her Jenna. Jenna Elizabeth Sidle. I like the name Elizabeth.”

I’m fifteen again, feeling my daughter move for the first time. I’m curled up on a thin cot in the Modesto Children’s Shelter, my physics homework completely forgotten when I feel that first kick. Somehow, I knew where the second one would be and when that foot connected to my hand, I forgave Derrick for raping me and I forgave Mackenzie for forcing me to give her up. In that moment, I only wanted what was best for this little life who was playing hide-and-seek with my hand. Twenty years later, curled up in the thick micro-fiber couch in the living room of the house that I share with my lover and partner, I feel like I’m that teenager again. I’m the fifteen-year-old who screamed bloody murder during labor and who begged to see a daughter she wasn’t allowed to keep. The great secret is that I wanted to keep her. I never wanted to be a mother, but I’d have kept her if they’d let me.

“Why Jenna?”

I’m startled back to 2007. “What?”

“You like the name Elizabeth, but why Jenna? Why Jennifer?” My hand is in one of his, and I fall in love again with the gentleness in his touch. Everything is always so gentle, even when I’m tied to the bed and he’s having his way with me. That gentleness is what lets me trust his instincts; he’d stop even before I uttered the word.

I shrug, back in the present, a time period keep trying to leave. Being in this moment means that I have to think about the last few days. I don’t want to remember Cammie’s eyes or the eyes of her killer. I don’t want to think that I tried to help him. I should have known better. I could have done … something. “My best friend …” I hear myself answering the question, “back … before things went to hell … her family lived in a cottage down the beach from the bed and breakfast … her name was Jennifer. I’d sneak out sometimes and go over to her place, when my parents were fighting.”

“Desrea was pregnant.” His voice is soft, and I’m stunned for a moment that he’s sharing right along with me. I’ve known about Desrea for years, but this is new to me, and suddenly so many things click perfectly into place. “She was four months along … I got called into work in the middle of a fight.”

“Did you have names picked out?” Suddenly his story is so much more compelling than my own angst and I wonder how he’d have reacted if it had been him holding Cammie in those final moments.

“Logan. Either way, it was going to be Logan.” He grants me the grin I’ve come to call the “Desi-grin”; the one he uses when he’s remembering the wife that was. I’m long past my jealousies and insecurities knowing now that so much of his fear of our relationship stems from the night he was called to the hospital only to arrive ten minutes too late.

I can feel blood flowing through my veins again and I move enough to snuggle back into the thick fleece of the 49ers sweatshirt he gave me for Christmas. The way the fabric falls over my stomach makes me look pregnant, and I wonder, not for the first time, if we should just take the risk and I should go off the pill. “Logan for a girl?”

“Since when do you care about stereotypical gender names?”

“I can’t believe I lost perspective like that …” Suddenly I’m in the present again.

“One of the things I love about you …” the vibrations of his voice rumble against my shoulders, “is your lack of perspective. I can’t chase the rabbits like you do. But your chasing them proves to me that this job doesn’t have to make us into robots.”

“You aren’t a robot, Gil.” I know words that I’ve flung at him haunt him and I wish I could take back every time I’ve called him unfeeling.

“I feel it. Sometimes.” His lips connect with the top of my head and I know he’s waxing philosophical more than worrying about his own reactions to the job.

“What about with us?”

“Children?” He shifts, slightly, and his fingers trace my stomach. “I don’t know, Sara. I just don’t.”

“I don’t either.” This is hardly a new conversation. “I don’t know if I could do this job and be a mother. I don’t know if I could process even one little girl …”

“I know.” Again his lips make contact with my head and those big arms that I fell in love with almost eleven years ago wrap completely around me. “I was so scared …”


“I heard you screaming … all I could think was that a suspect … if you had been …” his fingers trace that lingering scratch on my cheek. “God, Sara. Sometimes, perspective is all we have …”

“And when we lose it?”

“I don’t know.”

The circular conversation was nothing new for us, so I let the thought hang in the air. My lips sipped at the cooling tea and the ice in my veins continued to melt. Gil just kept me close.

“Did you ever get to hold her?

“No.” I felt the ghost pains of a labor from twenty years ago ripping through my body. “She was small, but not unhealthy. Six pounds I think I heard them say. I went back to the shelter after a couple of days … I don’t know … time just kind of melted together back then. Three weeks later, my social worker placed me in a new home.”

“She would have been …”

“The age of those girls.” As usual, I finish his sentence. “So would Logan …”

“Strange, isn’t it?”

“I don’t know if strange is the word I’d use.” The tea is doing what he intended, and I’m relaxing. The natural sedative of the catnip and chamomile combined with his arms around me make the case fade away – at least for now. When we wake the sun will be setting and the shadows will return. I’ll look in the mirror and see the scratch and Cammie’s eyes will be the ones reflecting back at me. But, right now, the sun is rising over Vegas and we, the people who see the darkest of the dark when there is no light to illuminate the answers, are heading to bed. For a minute, I wonder what it would be like to solve crimes in sunlight.

“You ready?” He looks at me and I think I nod because he’s up now, closing the blackout curtains and then taking the mug of almost-finished tea to the kitchen. On shaky legs I stand and follow, realizing just how drained I am. He catches my hand to guide me up the stairs to the room that we finally call our own. His lips find mine; together we kiss away ancient memories and give each other a new perspective.

Continued in Finding Happy


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 6th, 2011 05:37 am (UTC)
I want more!!!!
So Great!
Feb. 6th, 2011 06:13 am (UTC)
Re: I want more!!!!
Thank you! :)

Well, if you want more, check out the info page of the community. There's a ton of CSI stories posted there. Hopefully, more to come.
Mar. 21st, 2011 05:39 pm (UTC)
This was amazing. It was so sad and yet strangely beautiful.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )


The Writing of VegaWriters
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