Catherine entered the lounge to see Sara sitting down at the table, talking on her cell phone. Her cheeks were flushed and she was grinning; the older woman wondered what was going on.
She tried not to listen, while she walked to the counter and poured herself a cup of coffee, but it was extremely difficult. Saras singsong voice carried very well across the other side of the room, and the words she chose instilled much curiosity inside the strawberry-blondes mind.
Yeah, I know, Sara continued her conversation. It was just... ... ...well, if we had been at a restaurant, or movie, or something, it wouldve been romantic, but hes not exactly the romantic kind... ... ...I know! I had no idea that I had affected him so much. I cant even think of the time ... ...What? Again? She sighed. Alright. I asked him: Since when are you interested in beauty? and then, he just said, without looking up: Since I met you. She giggled. I know. On the ice! Very unromantic. Haha. Had I been able to see his blue eyes, it wouldve been better. Youve seen that picture of us from San Francisco, right?
Catherine chose that moment to stop listening, as hard as it was. She turned the television on, and started watching the first thing she found that looked remotely decent: a movie, where two cops were blowing up lots of things. It looked entertaining, plus, the loud explosions covered up Saras voice.
Her heart was pounding, angry and afraid of the exchange Sara spoke of that she was certain happened with Gil. Warricks eyes werent blue, and neither were Nicksand, neither of those men were with Sara on any ice in Las Vegas, as far as Catherine knew. She also knew that Gil and Sara had been alone, together, on the ice at the hockey rink while she had been interviewing in the locker room.
The thought of a picture of them, together, existing somewhere in the recesses of Gils previous life, made her blood boil. She never considered herself the jealous type, but she was certainly acting the part. The only piece of evidence that gave her some sense of calm and satisfaction was when Sara mentioned that he wasnt looking at her when he said what he had said.
His eyes were the windows to him. He kept himself closed off, and the only way he really ever showed someone who he was as a person was to make eye contact with him. Catherine knew that had he looked Sara in the eye, she would have a lot more to worry about.
But, she still wanted to ask Gil what was going on.
After a little while, Gil came into the lounge, and she began to explain some of the things she discovered to the two workaholics.
Gil took all of Catherines information in, but noticed more than what she was saying. The look in her eyes wasnt a happy one; it pained him, because he had been hoping that things were getting better.
When she was finished, he looked at Sara and said: Go get Brass. Ill be right with you.
Catherines eyes darkened even more when they were alone, her barriers finally sliding away. Gil frowned. Want to tell me whats wrong?
Since I met you! She mimicked Saras voice maliciously. What did she do to make you care so much about beauty?
He raised an eyebrow, trying to stay calm. Are you jealous?
Yes! She nodded, her voice raising. I am!
Its a little irrational, dont you think?
She shook her head and waved her arms. No, I dont.
Dont Cath me! Shes quite crazy about you, and has been for some time, and you indulge her by saying that... that... line! And, obviously, Im going to hear about it. What were you thinking?
His brow wrinkled in thought. I was thinking that maybe youre secure enough to know that how I feel about you will never change.
Apparently, Im not secure enough, she moved past him. He tried to stop her, by grabbing her arm. She wrenched free. Let go of me. Im angry.
He tried to reach for her. When he connected with her waist, she squirmed; when he hit her ticklish spot, she yelped and jumped away. Sorry, Cath, please. Listen to me.
I really dont want to right now, she looked up at him. When her eyes met his, he could see how upset she was. Tears were starting to fill her eyes. All I can think about is... what did you two mean to each other in San Francisco?
He knew he had never answered her questions from a couple weeks ago, but he had also thought that she had been past it. Things had been getting a little easier between them, and he just hadnt thought it was relevant. Catherine, you know that I love you, more than anything. Why
How do I know youre not sneaking around with her, too? She crossed her arms over her chest. Gil shook his head, not believing how insane this conversation was becoming. Did her threatening to leave have anything to do with a big fight? Is that what those flowers were about? Kissing and making up?
Gil shook his head, disbelief written plainly on his face. What do you want from me?
I want you, she replied, her voice shaking. Until I can have it all back... She shook her head. He watched her cover her mouth, as she turned and left the room.
Catherine went home immediately, clocking out without any guilt. She couldnt believe how childish she had acted in front of the most important man in her life. She knew that she was exhausted, and that their relationship was strained, and that Sara could be meddlesome when she wanted to bebut none of those things were valid excuses when she looked back at their argument.
The drive home was interrupted with a stop to the supermarket, where she bought three flavours of ice creambutterscotch ripple, cookie dough, and chocolate decadent, two sundae toppingsstrawberry and chocolate, and a package of sprinklesthe chocolate ones. Then, she stopped and bought a case of beer. She had a big evening planned for herself, two break-up remedies, both the alcoholic and non-alcoholic types.
She hadnt been sure if it was a break-up, but Gil wasnt a stupid man; men rarely put up with theatrics like the ones she put on display at work.
Catherine wanted to be prepared.
It was the first time in a long time that she was glad Lindsay wasnt home.
After Brass took the doctor away to be booked, Sara left Gil, and Gil immediately picked up his cell phone and dialed a number, his curiosity getting the better of him.
Nicks phone wasnt ringing, Warrick noticed, so whatever Gil wanted had to be personal. He sighed. Hang on one sec, Nick, he told him before they headed out of the casino. Ive gotta take this.
The Texan smiled. No problem. Ill bring the car around.
Great, thanks, man, he said before turning around to answer the phone. Brown.
Warrick, its Grissom.
I know. Whats up?
Catherine left early. I was wondering if she was with you.
Warrick shook his head, before speaking, as if his boss could see him. No, sorry. I havent seen her much at all this shift. He sucked in air, knowing hed regret asking the question in his mind, but also knowing he was the only objective voice sometimes for them. He wanted his friends to be happy; he just didnt want to be unhappy to achieve their happiness. What happened?
We had a fight.
Im not surprised.
You sound like your dog died or something. What was it about? Gil filled him in on the little he knew. Then, Warrick responded, trying to help without getting actively involvedalthough he had a nagging feeling he was going to have to play a part in patching things up between them. Did you explain all of that to her?
I didnt think it was
Gris, I thought you were getting better at reading people?
He chuckled sadly. I guess not. I just thought that she knew how
They like to be reminded. I dont understand it, but they do. Plus, paying all that attention to Sara cant be helping.
No... came the older mans reply. Warrick wondered about him sometimes.
I might be out of line, but did you and Sara have some sort of
It was Gils turn to cut Warrick off. No.
Does Catherine know this?
She left before I could tell her. Would you, maybe, if its not too much, call her and see if shes okay?
Warrick laughed. Youve gotta be kidding me. Gris, you have to fix this. This isnt no high school romance.
She loves you. Nothing has changed. Go see her. Shes probably at home. He sighed, turning as Nicks car pulled up to the curb. He still had one more phone call to make, and then he knew he could go. Before he ended his call with Gil, though, he added: Do no more harm, okay?
Ill do my best.
Catherine looked at her phone, wondering if she should answer it. She had already had three beer, and she was part way through her second gigantic, disgustingly sweet sundae. She was in no condition to talk to anyone.
But, against her better judgment, she did get up and answer it. He-hello?
Its me, Cath, Warricks voice could be heard on the other end. Dont tell Gris I called, but I just wanted to make sure you were okay.
She sniffled. I, uh, yeah.
He never had a thing with Sara, if it helps.
She slid to the floor by the phone. Ive really messed things up now, havent I?
As those words found her ear, she heard her doorbell ring. Gil called out to her, through the door, confirming her hope. No, she replied. Not completely. Thanks, Warrick. Ill talk to you tomorrow.
You owe me.
She smiled. I do.
After she put the phone back in its cradle, she got up and walked to the door. When she opened it, Gil was standing on the step, looking as awful as she looked and felt. May I come in?
Yeah. Of course. She said, stepping away to give him room. I promise I wont yell.
He sighed and stepped inside. Thank you. Is Lindsay
No, she shook her head, nervous for so many reasons. Shes staying at my sisters... they had a birthday party for Jeremy. It was just easier.
She shut the door as he walked into the living room. When she came into his sight, he was holding up the ice cream dish and one of the beer bottles. Cath?
Rough night, she smiled weakly. I was treating myself... trying to feel less awful. She took the bowl from him, which was full of melting butterscotch ice cream. When she reached for the beer bottle, he handed it to her; when she set it down, he clasped his hand over her wrist. Gil?
His eyes were dark, and moist; it looked like he had been crying, but she wasnt sure. We really need to talk. I, uh, he looked around before returning to her questioning gaze. I have some things I need to tell you.
She felt herself shake a little as she let him pull her towards the sofa. Briefly, she considered reaching past him for her unfinished beer, but she decided against it, instead bracing herself against the arm of the sofa she was positioned next to.
Sara and I never had a relationship of any kind, outside the normal student/professor one.
We did keep in touch, and she did volunteer at the lab where I worked then, he explained, cutting her off. So we did get to know each other a little bit better than any of my other students. But, it was professional. For me, anyway.
She felt her cheeks heat up. What about
He cut her off again. She tried to take me out once, after a really difficult case. We went to an art museum. There was a Monet painting that I really adored. It was beautiful, and for the first time I actually considered something beautiful. She sighed, and when he scooped her up she felt like laughing and crying at the same time. And, you, Miss Catherine, have made me care about so many other things.
Why didnt you say all of this when I started to get upset?
He shrugged, ducking his eyes away. I didnt think you were that upset. When she made a scoffing noise, he continued talking. It was part of my past, and I thought that youd accept my past as my past, and not need to know everything about me before I came into
It was her turn to cut him off. They always did that so easily, she mused silently. Im possessive when it comes to you, she admitted. Saras always had a thing for you. I dont like it when other women are after you. It makes me uncomfortable. I just... I dont want to get hurt.
Gil placed his hand against her cheek gently. Well, I hate to break it to those other women, whoever they are, he added in a disbelieving tone. But, Ive only got eyes for one woman.
He nodded. Yeah. Im quite smitten. Shes all I think about at work, at home... Shes really smart, although sometimes she says the stupidest things.
Hey! She swatted him. He laughed and squeezed her to him. She put a finger to his lips and then asked: What did I make you care about?
He brought a hand up and put his finger on her lips, mirroring her actions, making her shiver. Love, trust, passion... he shrugged, as if he wasnt sure of what he was saying. I remember that first night we met, just feeling completely alive.
Catherine felt her cheeks flush again. He nipped at her finger, which made her close her eyes. She felt the relief that his words created, but it didnt completely wipe her insecurities and fears away. Things had been changing between themshe wasnt blind, or stupid. She didnt know why; however, she was beginning to believe that his love for her wasnt changing. What was, though, she didnt know.
When she felt something cold on her arm, she popped her eyes open. Gil was holding the bowl of melted ice cream in one hand and her spoon in the other. On her arm was a trail of the butterscotch liquid.
Gil Grissom, she shook her head, while arousal spread like wild fire through her system. You had better clean that up.
He smirked and dipped his head, lowering his tongue to the mess he made, lapping it up. The fire inside of her blazed, making her moan on a sigh. Butterscotch, he said, smacking his lips. My favorite.
Were going to be all sticky.
Well, he replied. I guess that means well have to shower later.
She nodded, eyes half-closed, as he dipped down again to continue cleaning up his arm. She leaned against the arm of the chair, and let him have his fun. As her eyes closed, she felt him lift her shirt up; without thinking, she lifted her arms so he could pull the tank top off.
When she felt the cold liquid on her stomach, she jumped and opened her eyes. He chuckled. Cant have you falling asleep... besides, I like it when I can see what youre thinking.
Were going to make a mess, she told him what she was thinking.
He rolled his eyes. Wheres your sense of adventure? After laughing for a moment, he returned to her stomach, licking and lapping at the gooey goodness. Unexpectedly, he grinned and stood up. I have an idea. Wait there.
She heard him walk down the hall; she thought he went into the kitchen, but when he came back into the living room, he came in as if coming from the bedroom. He was carrying a pillow with him, and his hand was being offered to her. Catherine?
Im coming, she said, getting up. She paused to take her pants offfor fear hed get ice cream on them, among other reasonsand then she took his hand and let him lead her into the kitchen, as she first suspected. The kitchen?
He tossed the pillow onto the middle of the floor, and then lowered her down. It was cold, but she didnt notice, the heat in her body too overpowering. When her head rested on the pillow, he stood up again and sought out the ice cream.
She felt it along her rib cage, and then she felt his mouth take the cold away. All she could do was writhe and moan; he was turning her coherent thoughts into strings of misplaced words, her quick mind into a slow one. When he took her bra off, she watched his fascination, and wondered what was going through his head. He played with the ice cream, trying different splatter techniques, different patterns, and then he removed the ice cream with the same enthusiasm he showed in applying it to her skin.
Gil... She tried to sound firm, but knew her voice couldnt muster the strength; he had reached for her underwear, and she had reached a thought that pointed to the mess they were going to make. You cant... put that down there.
He chuckled and slid up her body, her skin sticking to his clothes. For the first time, she remembered he was still very clothed. It made her shiver, as she felt much more exposed. He kissed her, and then asked: Why not?
I... He grinned when she couldnt vocalize a decent answer. She sighed, and fell back against the pillow, releasing control to him. The cold made her jump, because it was in such contrast to the fire burning below her waist. When he lowered his mouth down, licking upwards in long strokes, her hands clenched into fists at her sides, while her hips bucked upwards. After a couple minutes, her hands found his head, her fingers tangled into his hair. God, Gil... She knew it sounded like she was whining, but she didnt care; it felt too good. Before she knew it, he was pushing her into an orgasm, his tongue and fingers bringing her up onto a waves crest, and working her over the crash.
Gil looked up at her from his position between her legs, his eyes dark, his smile charming. Catherine raised an eyebrow and asked: When am I going to get to eat my ice cream?
As if to torment her, he ate a spoonful of the stuff. She pouted, and was rewarded when he slid up her body again to kiss her. Over her tongue, she could taste liquid ice cream and herself, which she found erotic. When they were still kissing, she managed to take advantage and flip him over. Better help me get you undressed, she grinned. Its my turn.
While they kept their eyes together, their hands worked together to undress him. When she could see all of Gil, she picked up the bowl and began to drizzle the butterscotch cream over his skin. He gasped when the cold hit him, but relaxed somewhat when she started licking at it.
Is it good?
She lifted her head. Yeah, its not bad. She slid down his body, and stopped when her eyes reached his erection. He was about to protest, but she shook her head. Its only fair, Gil.
After pouring the cream over him, she caught herself from developing a case of the giggles, knowing it wouldnt be appropriate. Instead, she bent her head, and started taking his entire length into her eager mouth. First he jumped, his hips bucking, but then he relaxed; she could feel him twitching to a rhythm she created unknowingly.
Cath? She looked up, as her tongue swirled over the tip of his shaft. He groaned, before speaking. Can you stop that now? Id really like to not... ruin the moment.
She stopped, knowing that she wanted him inside of her, too. He reached for her, and she crawled back up his body. When she felt him against her heat, she teased him a little first, rocking back and forth, before adjusting herself to lower her body down onto him.
When they were joined, Catherine felt tears welling up in her eyes, but somehow she managed to control them. Gil didnt say anything, so she assumed he didnt notice; she wasted no time moving to his insistent thrusts, rocking her hips in a somewhat circular fashion.
She wasnt entirely surprised to feel another orgasm building inside of her, and she savoured the sensations, watching Gils face for indications that he was close. His hands met her hips, almost directing her; she fell forward, her hands resting on his chest, while she kept up with him. Her breathing became laboured, and as she started groaning, she knew the end was near.
When one of his hands left her hip to move between them, she gasped, her eyes popping wide open. He helped her reach her release; as she struggled to stay upright, to stay conscious, to keep her eyes in his, she felt him tighten before exploding inside of her.
Then, she collapsed. Resting on top of his chest, she smiled, feeling more content than she had in a long time.
She tried to look up at him, but found that her body was too lax to move. Were really sticky, Gil.
We should get up soon.
She chuckled. Then, as she brought a hand up to toy with the light hairs that were on his chest, she confessed: I love you.
I love you, too.
I know I dont say it all the time, but it doesnt make it any less true.
He kissed the top of her head. I know.