Crossing the Line - Part Six

More Than Partners

Written by M. the Cat

Disclaimer: This is a work of fan fiction. The characters belong to their various creators: Buena Vista Television / The Walt Disney Company and The Gargoyles Saga, and they are used without their express knowledge or consent.

Authorís note: The following is based on the Madame Destine story "Kaleidoscope Eyes" and follows the introductory chapter "Prelude" and the stories "Pushing Back the Shadows", "Plausible Deniability", "Smoothing the Water" and "Game Plan". However it isnít set in the universe of Madame Destine or any other ficverse. It occupies a place and time of its own.

Thanks to Mooncat for setting me off on this little tangent.

Feedback please!

* * * * *

I woke up at nine bursting with plans for the future. I hauled myself out of bed, dressed in shorts and a tee shirt and packed a gym bag with street clothes. In the kitchen, I sniffed a tulip from Elisaís bouquet still sitting on the counter and smiled before opening the cabinet above. I found a protein bar and downed it between swigs of orange juice. Meal completed, I was ready for my sixteen block jog to the gym.

I was full of energy and it didnít take me long to work through my usual circuit. Iíd been slacking off lately, neglecting my physical training, so to make up for it I spent an extra forty minutes sparring against Valentine the martial arts instructor. I was bruised but feeling good when I hit the shower.

Next order of business was lunch. There was a juice bar at the gym, but I had other plans and an ulterior motive. I joined the crowd of office drones surging into a bistro four blocks away. The restaurant was a favorite hangout of Lieutenant Palmer and his cronies and he could often be found there downing Caesar Salad and ice teas when he wasnít hunched over his computer.

I was in luck. Palmer was sitting alone near the window. I feigned surprise when I walked by his table on the way to the menís room and he called me over.

"I didnít know you ate here," I said as he invited me to join him. I glanced at the menu the waiter put before me and at the Lieutenantís recommendation I ordered grilled chicken over pasta. We talked shop until the food arrived and then dug in. The chicken was tough and the noodles overcooked, but I was hungry so it made it easy to clean my plate and compliment his suggestion. I was wondering how to bring up the idea of the transfer when he saved me the trouble and did it himself.

"Bluestone," he said as he added another packet of artificial sweetener to his newly refilled tea. "I hear youíre doing good work out on the street and I appreciate that as much as the next cop, but youíre an up and comer and should be taking a longer view."

"How do you mean, sir?" This was going better then I could have hoped.

"Youíve made people in the Mayorís office take notice as head of the Gargoyles Task Force." He pointed a teaspoon at me. "But that sort of thing only goes so far. You need to stretch yourself. How long have you been on the Robbery Squad?"

"About three years," I replied.

"Then itís time for a change." He put down the spoon, took a hefty swig of ice tea and blotted his bushy mustache. "I want you to consider moving to my unit. It might not be as exciting as a night in the trenches, but it has its own rewards."

You have no idea, I thought. "Tell me more, sir."

He outlined the thrill of using advanced computer forensics and the possibilities of promotion. How working days left oneís evening free to attend Mayoral functions. And since their squad rarely worked weekends, there were plenty of opportunities to hit the links and handball courts. "And you know how much city business goes on outside of office hours."

"Very true, sir," I admitted as I sipped at a glass of water. I let him persuade me some more, offering just the right mix of interest and reluctance.

"So, Matthew, what do you think?" he said as the bill came.

I thought it sounded great, but I didnít want to appear too eager. "Can I have the weekend to think it over?"

Palmer smiled. He knew it was a done deal and the stall was just a formality. He stuck out a beefy hand and we shook. "Of course, Bluestone. I like a man who considers his decisions. Rash acts make waves."

I thanked him and it was all I could do to keep from grinning as I exited the restaurant.

* * *

I woke at ten, rolled over, and at Cagneyís insistence, got up. I went straight for the kitchen not bothering to do more than pick up my sleep shirt from the foot of the bed where Goliath had left it and pull it over my head.

The coffee brewed. I caught the first cup as it dripped from the pot and after feeding the cat, pulled back the curtains and looked out onto the patio. There was no sign of Goliath. I wasnít surprised exactly. He had woken me when he got up out of the bed, but I was so tired I had no idea if it was closer to midnight or dawn when he left.

I was sore, stiff and tense despite his best efforts to help me unwind. I finished my coffee and after dressing in a tee shirt and soft gym shorts I went out onto the patio to do some tai chi.

The slow, rhythmic motions helped center my mind and loosen up my aching joints and muscles. I felt better, but still wired, so I went back inside, put on socks and sneakers and headed to the park for a run.

I pushed myself hard, five miles alternating straight sprints and impromptu obstacle courses going over, instead of around, trash cans, benches and the occasional shrub. I was winded, but I felt good. After walking a mile to cool off I stopped at a street vendor for a hot dog and a soda.

I sat on a park bench to eat my lunch and watch little kids chase ducks. It hit me all of a sudden maybe someday one of those toddlers could be mine. It was a scary feeling. I loved children, but between my career as a cop and my choice of Goliath as a mate, Iíd pretty much written the whole idea off. Now as I enjoyed the sun and the warm spring breeze I wondered what it would be like to have someone call me Mom.

My hand crept to my lap and cupped my stomach. I thought again of Matt and our unprotected encounter. "One step at a time," I said aloud. I decided to call my doctor and make an appointment as soon as I got back to the apartment to discuss birth control. Parenthood could wait a little longer.

* * *

The morning had been devoted to new beginnings but the afternoon was dedicated to saying goodbye. I went home and changed into my rarely worn dress blues for the funeral of Officer Jack Weaver.

Elisa knocked on my door at 2:00 dressed as I was in navy with a black band across her badge. She hugged me briefly and said, "Morgan and Benson are waiting downstairs. Letís go."

We rode together, four officers from the 23rd to Brooklyn. When we reached the designated parking area we became part of a vast blue sea of mourners who had come to pay their final respects to their fallen brother. It was a solemn procession of men and women that made their way to line up six deep outside the church. I recognized a lot of faces, cops from every precinct, firefighters, transit authority guys.

They set up speakers so we could hear the eulogy and prayers. For such a macho bunch there werenít many dry eyes. Weaver was commemorated as a guy who had a smile and a kind word for everyone, from the little old lady next door, to the homeless guy on his beat that he always managed to find a buck for, even if it meant going without his nightly coffee. He was a brave cop, a good friend, and an asset to his community who would be sorely missed.

I stayed near Elisa watching her closely. She kept her composure as Officer Perkins related the story of Weaverís final shift. The only sign of her distress was the handkerchief she twisted in her white-gloved hands. When I put an arm around her shoulders she leaned in and I was grateful for her presence.

Afterwards we fell out to join the funeral cortège. Anger crept over me as we marched the short distance to the cemetery. When the pipers played "Amazing Grace" and the flag was removed from the casket, folded reverently and handed to Weaverís widow, I felt like my blood was starting to boil. Too often good men and women were consigned to the ground when they had so much left to live for and too often the cause was some punk who had nothing to offer but trouble.

Elisa bowed her head during the final prayer and when she looked up again her eyes were damp. She blotted them quickly, as did many of the officers around us. As did I.

At the cry of ĎDis-missed!í we broke ranks and moved slowly out of the cemetery. Weaverís family had invited his partner and friends from his watch to the house for a formal reception but the others who had come to celebrate his life and commemorate his death generated spontaneous wakes in every pub and bar in the neighborhood.

I saw Morgan and Benson disappear into a place called the Tip Top and gestured to Elisa. She surprised me by following them inside.

It was a typical neighborhood drinking establishment. A long polished wood bar with a mirror behind it ran along one wall and pool tables and dartboards took up space in the back. Already it was filled with men and women in blue standing at the bar and crowding around small tables. A black crepe draped picture of Weaver in patrol gear was set up on a tripod near the front. A donation bucket on a barstool was already stuffed with cash. The barkeep was busy pulling pints and filling shot glasses. The wait staff hustled, trays in hand, to deliver drinks and sandwiches to all comers.

I was more than ready for the whisky offered by the waitress. Elisa surprised me by taking a glass of her own. A toast, the first of many, to Weaver was offered and she downed her shot with a grimace and reached for another.

Someone started fooling around with a piano and a pretty good tenor broke into a lonesome country dirge. As the song concluded there was a round of applause and someone called for another toast. We raised our glasses and drank again. It became something of a cycle - a song and a toast, a toast and an emptied glass. After a while as I observed those around me lamenting a life cut down before its time, I began to regret everything Iíd meant to do and hadnít done. I found Elisa and taking her by the hand, we left the Tip Top.

* * *

Matt is usually such a rock it tends to surprise me when he finally reaches his limit. At the wake, something inside him gave way and when he took my hand, I knew it was time to get out of there.

The crush outside had faded as the mourners dispersed back across the city. I was feeling the effects of the whisky Iíd drunk as we walked several blocks back to where weíd left the car. I was muzzy, feeling overheated and just a little dizzy. Iíd unbuttoned my wool jacket earlier, now I slipped it off and carried it over my arm.

I looked up at Matt and his face was set as if he was controlling himself closely. "Are you okay?"

He shook his head. "Not really." Despite the fact we were out in public and there were still people everywhere, he reached for my hand again. I took his and gave it a squeeze, then brought his arm to link with mine in a slightly less intimate pose. The car came into view and he asked if he should drive.

I considered, but decided that while I probably couldnít manage a high-speed chase, I could definitely make it home. "Iím okay," I insisted as I unlocked the doors and dumped my jacket, cap and gloves in the back seat. He did the same and a moment later we were heading back to Manhattan. Matt stared moodily out the window.

"Penny for your thoughts."

He didnít reply, at least he didnít use words. He took my hand and his thumb began to trace slow circles in my palm. When we arrived at his apartment I barely had time to take the car out of gear and put it into park before heíd pulled me into his embrace.

We went upstairs.

* * *

I had no words to express what was in my heart or going through my head. I fumbled my keys from my pocket and opened the door to my apartment pulling Elisa in after me. I know we agreed to take it slow, but thereís something about funerals, that sense of realization that creeps over you as the words are said over the departed that too much time is wasted and too many priorities are wrong.

Itíd wasted a lot of time waiting for Elisa and now that I had her, I didnít want to waste anymore. I took her into my arms and kissed her like we had no tomorrow.

Her arms went around me and she pressed her body close to mine. I picked her up, carried her into the bedroom and deposited her on the bed.

Elisa pulled off her tie. I worked the buttons open on my shirt and then went to help her with hers. She shrugged it off. It fell to the bed and I pushed it onto the floor.

I was anxious. I wanted her desperately, but unlike our first time, I didnít want to rush. We undressed each other slowly taking our time to savor and explore.

Elisa was down to her bra and panties and I donít think Iíve ever seen anything so beautiful. Caught in the rays of the fading afternoon sunlight her dusky skin was illuminated and she seemed to glow as she beckoned to me. My heart raced as she ran her hands slowly over my chest and my breath caught in my throat as they started to drift further south.

I bent my mouth to hers and caught her full bottom lip in mine as I worked the hooks of her bra. It broke free and I pushed it aside to cup and caress her breasts. She sighed as I gently trailed kisses down the length of her body and when I finally pulled the small cotton triangle of her panties over her hips and traced my fingers over the molten center of her sex her hips writhed. She was as ready as I was.

* * *

"Please, Matt." My thoughts were fogged with need and whisky as I reached for him to pull his body to mine. He crawled his way back up the length of me and the trail of kisses and caresses he left from thigh to collarbone was becoming more than I could endure. I beckoned to him.

"Hang on, sweetheart." He reached to the dresser and removed a small foil packet from the drawer, extracted the condom and sheathed himself.

He started to crawl on top of me. I rolled him onto his back, straddled him, then impaled myself, falling forward to brace my arms against his shoulders. He moaned as I began to ride him.

* * *

This was everything I imagined. I looked up at Elisa and her eyes were closed in concentration as she slowly moved above me. My hands were free to explore and I took full advantage touching her everywhere within my reach. I cupped her breasts and when her hand closed over mine in encouragement, I wet my fingertips and pinched her nipples. Her undulations increased and I could tell she was close. I reached a hand between us, found the center of her and began to caress her with my thumb.

Her eyes flew open and she called my name. I nearly lost it as Elisaís cries became an incoherent jumble of pleas and sighs. She collapsed on top of me and I rolled us over thrusting again and again as her hips rose to meet mine. I lost myself in her. I found myself in her. When, chest heaving, I finally withdrew, I bent my lips to her still trembling flesh and kissed her softly.

* * *

I felt Matt leave the bed, though I couldnít quite muster the strength to open my eyes and look. The water went on and off in the bathroom. A moment later he was back and I found my way into his arms. "Happy?" he murmured. All I could do was nod.

We cuddled for a little while and made love a second time spooning underneath the blankets. When the world came back into focus I looked at the clock and sighed.

"I should go."

"You should stay," Matt protested.

I got up despite his half attempt to prevent me. "I wish I could, but weíre supposed work tonight, remember? Iíve got to go home and change."

"Five more minutes?" He traced a finger up my spine.

I smiled and relented. "Five minutes."

It was starting to be closer to ten when the ringing of the telephone shattered our peace. Reluctantly, Matt reached an arm over me and answered. "Bluestone." He rolled over onto his back and sat up. "Sara, where are you?"

I made myself very still.

"Ohio?" He glanced down at me. Whispered, "Iím sorry," before continuing. "Yeah, you caught me," he said. "I was in bed. I had to go to a funeral this afternoon and it left me kind of wiped. Who? A patrolman, Jack Weaver, no not the 23rd. The 27th."

I listened to the half conversation and wondered what Matt was thinking. He hung up after assuring Sara he couldnít wait to see her and I was surprised by how jealous I felt.

Matt noticed. "Iím sorry, sweetheart." He pulled me to him and kissed the crown of my head.

"I know." I stroked his temple. "It doesnít make it any easier. Especially now that you and I are-"

"Are what?" He kissed the hollow of my throat.

"More than partners?" I ventured as I played with the shell of his ear.

His hand trailed my body and came to rest on my hip. "Much more."

It wasnít easy to leave him. I put on my wool pants, my dress shirt, clip on tie and shiny black shoes. We lingered over the kiss at his door. We had a tough night ahead of us. The captain would be watching us, watching me, especially after todayís funeral. I wouldnít be the least bit surprised if she suggested another session with the shrink. I knew what Matt and I was doing was crazy and I wondered, just for a second, if maybe I shouldnít make the call on my own.

* * * * *

Part Seven