Title: Sadness to Happiness
Author: gamerchick02, gamerchick03 (on deviantArt)
Disclaimer: I don’t own them; E. George and BBC do.
Rating: R. Swearing and “impure thoughts”. :)
Pairings: Lynley and Havers (L/H)
Spoilers: The most recent aired eps in the States (and I guess, the world…).
Summary: Lynley deals with Helen’s death. Havers comforts.
Notes: Angsty! Also posted on my deviantArt page. Feedback is teh lovez!
It was a cold, dark morning when DI Thomas Lynley was awakened quite rudely by his piercingly loud clock alarm. He rolled over to find empty space in his queen-sized bed. Helen was not there. She will never come back he thought, sadly. His hand had only silenced the alarm for five minutes, then it went off again. He groaned, then turned it off properly. Now it won’t bother me. He pulled the covers over his head and reveled in the protection of them.
He was starting to drift off again, when he heard another bell go off. “What in the bloody fucking hell is that?” he grumbled as he stared at the alarm clock. He smacked it with his hand, but the sound kept on going. Telephone. It’s my fucking mobile. With a grunt and a sigh, he jogged over to the dresser. The caller ID said “Havers”. He flipped open the phone and answered, “ ‘Ello?”
“Sir, it’s Barbara,” said Havers on the other side of the connection. She sounded distant. She was probably on her mobile, in the car.
“I bloody well know who you are. What the bloody hell do you need?”
“Uhm. Sir, there’s a case…”
“Yeah?” He was feeling combative today. Since Helen had died, he was feeling particularly angry and depressed.
“Well… we need your expertise. You haven’t been in for two weeks. Please, sir?” She was hesitant. She knew how hard Helen’s death had hit him. First their baby, then her.
“Yeah, I guess I can come in. Might be the best thing for me.”
“Thank you sir,” said Havers. She was quite relieved that he would come in. She had been able to handle the case so far, but she needed him there to advise in a couple of parts.
“Welcome. Oh, and Havers?”
“I’ll be there in an hour. Meet me in my office then. What time is it?”
Havers looked at her watch. “It’s about nine AM now. So, ten then?”
“Yeah. Wait for me if I’m late.”
Lynley snapped the phone shut.
Soon enough, he was in his car driving to the Met. Why the fuck am I doing this? he thought. It’s too soon for me to get back on a case. How can I concentrate on a case when I can’t even stop thinking of Helen? Before he knew it, he was pulling up to his usual spot. It was funny; nobody parked in it, even though parking wasn’t assigned. Everyone just knew.
He walked up to his office. Papers were strewn over the usually impeccably neat desk. Memos, phone messages, newspaper clippings and a tea cup. Tea cup?!?! Who left their tea cup on my desk? Who’s been here? Lynley noticed that it was hot and prepared just the way he liked it. There were only two other people besides him who knew how he liked his tea, and one was dead. “Havers?” he asked.
“Over here, sir.”
Lynley looked around his office, and noticed Havers over by the door. She was drinking some of the gut-rot coffee that the department brewed. “How long have you been here?”
“Oh, only five minutes.”
“Yeah. How’re you holding up?”
“Well. I could be better.”
“Ok. Could we close the door?”
“Sure. What do you need, Havers?”
Havers closed the door to his office. “Well sir, I was worried about you. You were away from work for two weeks. You never miss work.”
“Anyhow, we need to meet with Hillier.”
“Bloody hell. I don’t want to know what he wants to say to me.”
Just then, there was a knock at Lynley’s office door. With hardly any hesitation, it opened, and Hillier poked his head in. “A word?”
“Yeah, sure,” said Lynley and Havers together.
Hillier came in. “We’ve got another murder down at the river. The bobbies just pulled him out.”
Fuck, thought Lynley. This is what Havers wanted me to come in for. She has an amazing sense for these things. Although she didn’t predict Helen. “We’ll drive,” said Lynley.
“Is that ok, sir?” asked Havers.
“It’s fine,” he said. “Let’s go.” With that, they left, with Hillier standing there, dumbfounded.
Lynley unlocked the doors to his car. They both slid in and fastened their belts. “Uhm, Havers?” asked Lynley.
“Where exactly are the bobbies taking the body out of the river?”
“Over by the factory let out. You’ll see all the lights and hear all the sirens and such.”
They drove for a while. It was quiet in the car; no radio, no speaking, and no grumbling. Lynley’s mouth was set in a grimace. Have I made the right decision? What if I’m coming back to the job to early? What if I can’t do the job properly? He looked over at Havers. She looked away from him as soon as he looked at her. She was staring at me!! She can tell!
“Sir?” Havers broke the silence.
“You’ll be fine.”
Dammit, she can read my mind. “Uh… well… thanks?” he said with some hesitation.
Havers looked straight ahead. “Sir? The crime scene is coming up.”
Lynley noticed the lights of the bobby’s wagons. They flashed blue and white, suddenly very bright. He brought the car to a stop in a parking lot in front of a warehouse near the scene. Both of them got out of the car and walked down to the riverfront.
“Wha’do we ‘ave?” asked Havers to the bobby guarding the scene as Lynley and she lifted the police tape and went under it.
“Well, we’ve got some bloke dead. He’s been dumped in the river, as you can see. He’s all waterlogged, so we’ll know more after the autopsy.”
Havers looked at the body they had dragged out of the river. It was a white male, bloated with water, and wearing concrete shoes. Lynley took one look at the body and felt sick to his stomach. He hadn’t had much for breakfast, but what little he had eaten was starting to come up. He turned around and started running for a place away from the crime scene. Havers didn’t know what was going on; she was talking to the medical examiner who was looking at the body they had dragged out of the river. “Sir…” she started, not realizing that Lynley was nowhere near her.
“He’s run off,” said the ME.
“Oh, bloody hell,” grumbled Havers. She took off in the direction of the sound of retching. She found Lynley hunched over a trash can, puking his guts out. “Sir, are you all right?”
He stopped coughing long enough to reply, “That just… hit me the wrong way.”
“I think you should go home.”
“I’ll be fine, Havers.”
“No, I think you should go home. You don’t feel well. I can handle it.”
“I’m FINE, Havers!”
The argument ended with both of them staring at each other, eyes angry and wild. Lynley shook his head, grabbed his keys and started off toward the car. “Wait,” yelled Havers, “you’ll need someone to help you!”
At this point, Lynley was in no mood to argue. He waved her off while she finished securing the crime scene. The coppers had done a good job of gathering evidence and there was nothing really more they needed to do. He got in the car and laid his head on the steering wheel. He wasn’t feeling all that well.
Havers came back to the car and got in. All was quiet for a while. “Are you ok, sir?”
“Ugh. I don’t feel so good.”
“Drive home. I’ll figure out a way to get home myself. Anyway, you look like you need someone to help you.”
Again, Lynley was too tired to argue. He drove himself home, with Havers in the car. After parking in the driveway, he went up to the door with his key. He felt like a drunk, fiddling with the key. Havers came up next to him, grabbed the key, and inserted it into the lock. She smiled slightly at him as she opened the door.
Lynley went in after Havers. He was embarrassed that he couldn’t open his own door. Everything was really getting to him. He plopped down on his couch in the living room. Almost angrily, he grabbed one of the unread newspapers off of his coffee table and buried his nose in it. He had no clue where Havers had gone. She’s probably making herself at home. From the depths of his kitchen he heard “Sir? Where’s the teapot?”
“It’s in the cupboard over the stove.”
“Are you making tea?” Lynley asked.
“Yeah. You need something to calm your stomach.”
Lynley just sat on the couch and leaned his head back. He was starting to get a headache and his stomach wasn’t feeling any better.
“Here you go, sir.” Havers set a steaming cup of tea on the coffee table. “Isn’t it funny, sir? They call it a coffee table, but we set tea and newspapers on it.”
Lynley just looked at her with a look of confusion. “I guess.” He picked up his tea and took a sip. “Fixed perfectly. You remembered.”
“Of course, sir. Why would I forget?”
“I don’t know.”
They sat in silence, drinking their tea; Lynley on the couch, Havers on one of the chairs. Havers was visibly uncomfortable; she wasn’t used to being in Lynley’s home like this. She had been over to his home when Helen was alive. They had dinner all together. It was actually fun; Helen liked her and so did Lynley. She had started to relax in his home, with Helen there. Now she had no clue how to act. Should I mention anything? I wonder what he’s thinking? “Uhm… sir?”
“Uhh… how’re you holding up? I mean, after…”
“I’m fine. It’s hard to get back in the swing of things though. I feel so useless.” He closed his eyes. His breath was becoming ragged. Dammit, I will not cry! His emotions didn’t listen to his inner voice though, and tears started to leak out of his eyes.
Havers noticed that her boss was becoming emotional. What should I do? She was almost paralyzed with uncertainty. He leaned forward and put his head in his hands. It was then that she decided to act. Putting her tea down, she rushed over to the couch, sitting down next to him. She put her hand on his back, comforting him. Just then, he turned into her, putting his head on her shoulder. He was so exhausted. Everything seemed to drain him of his energy.
Barbara had no clue how to react when he buried his head in her shoulder. She had felt bold when she put her hand on his back, but now; now she felt even more paralyzed. She was almost in a daze as she wrapped her arms around him in a hug. He quietly sobbed into her shoulder.
She almost stopped breathing. His arms wrapped tighter around her. She knew she shouldn’t feel this way, but she was immensely attracted to him at this moment. Havers shook her head slightly, as if to get the thought out of her head. Just sit here and comfort him. Don’t think of that. “That” was her slightly impure thoughts of her boss. Again, she shook her head, but the thoughts never left.
“What’s wrong?” asked Lynley, muffled against her shoulder.
“Nothing,” answered Havers. “It’s just…”
“Just… I don’t know.”
“Ok.” Lynley had no clue what Havers was going through, but he was starting to have some thoughts himself. He had been attracted to her, of course, but not “that” way. They were close colleagues; not lovers. Anyway, it was too soon for him to be jumping into anything involving his heart. Helen had left him several months before she died, but he wasn’t over her. He would never be over her. She was his perfect mate. Soul-mate, if you will.
Lynley started to move. He picked his head up off Havers’ shoulder and looked into her eyes. She stared back into his; she had nothing to say right now. “Thank you,” said Lynley. “I needed someone here with me.”
“Uh… you’re welcome?” answered Havers. She was still having those feelings and was unsure of how to act. Should I act on this, or wait? She decided to wait. If Lynley wanted anything, he’d ask. “Sir,” said Havers as she handed him a tissue.
“Thanks.” He took it and wiped his eyes and his nose. It was just then that he noticed he had gotten Havers’ shirt all wet. “I’ve ruined your shirt!”
Havers looked down. “No, you haven’t. I’ve got some more at home.”
“No, I’ll get you something to wear!” he exclaimed.
Havers just shrugged as Lynley went up the stairs and rummaged through his stuff. He hadn’t yet gotten rid of Helen’s clothes, but he couldn’t part with them just yet. He decided on a plain white, button-up shirt for her to wear. Quite simple, and he had many of them.
He came back down the stairs with the white shirt. He handed it to her silently and pointed toward the downstairs bathroom. She went in.
Taking her “ruined” shirt off and putting the clean shirt on, Havers noticed the surroundings of the small downstairs bathroom. The walls were painted a soft yellow hue and the fixtures were white. Simple, quite like Helen and Lynley. She took a whiff of the shirt, noticing the smell. It smelled like a combination of Lynley and laundry soap. She couldn’t help but sigh contentedly as she took in the scent. “Mmmmmm…”
“Are you all right?” asked Lynley through the door.
Aaaaack! He heard me sighing. “I’m fine,” she said quickly as she opened the door and came out.
Lynley had heard a small sigh from behind the door of his bathroom. He walked over to the door and asked if she was all right. She was fine, but seemed a little miffed that he asked if she was ok. She came out of the bathroom wearing his shirt and he noticed how utterly attractive she was. Lynley shook his head. I can’t be thinking this! Helen’s only been gone two weeks! Well, she had left months before she died, but he wasn’t over her. He shook his head again.
“Are you ok sir?” asked Havers.
“Maybe I should go,” she said. “You seem to have something on your mind.”
I do thought Lynley. You. He said, “Maybe you should go. Would be the best for both of us.”
“Yeah,” said Havers. She looked around. “Uhhh, sir?”
“I don’t have my car…”
“Oh, dammit. I’ll take you home.”
“Actually, could you take me to the Met so I can pick up my car?”
“No problem.” Actually, this was going to be a big problem. Any more time with her, and I’m going to go crazy.
They got in his car, again, and headed back to the Met. Again, there was no talking, no radio and no complaining. Havers just sat in the front seat of the car in Lynley’s shirt, staring straight ahead. They reached the Met with no words exchanged. Havers exited the car and headed toward her car with a backward glance.
Lynley just let her go. His feelings for Havers were unresolved, but he couldn’t resolve them right now. He had to just ignore them for the time being. Mourning for Helen should be his concentration right now.
He drove back to his house. Today had been draining and he had no desire to go back into the office at the Met. He pulled into the drive, parked and got out. Walking up to the door, he stopped at the mailbox and grabbed the mail from the past three days. He looked through it as he unlocked the door. Bills, ads, and two magazines. One was for him, the other was for Helen. I’m going to have to get that canceled. He was in the process of taking care of Helen’s periodicals and whatnot, but he had missed this one. It saddened him to see her name on things.
There were also the feelings he had for Barbara that he had to worry about. What was that about? he thought. She comforted me today, but I felt something more. Maybe it was just the way I felt her hands… Her hands had felt particularly nice on his back. He hadn’t had any female human contact since Helen left him, and that was even a few nights before.
Meanwhile, Havers went back to work. She had reports to go over. So much for Lynley’s help. She figured that she could always ring him if she needed some advice. She wasn’t even sure what he expected. She looked down at her shirt. Well, his shirt. She smiled slightly. It still smelled like him. Wonderful, she thought. I’m becoming infatuated with my boss. She had read some psychology magazines about it, and found out that it was totally normal for some people to become interested in their supervisors for more than just business purposes. She shook her head again. I’ve got to stop thinking of this. She did what she knew to do when something was bothering her: work.
She covered all of the evidence in the case, going over all of the autopsies, the pictures and the witness statements. It looked like there was an American-style mafia that was running in the general area. They were putting people in the cement shoes and dropping them into the river. They had found three other men, all white, in the river with cement shoes. A gunshot would be more effective she thought. Oh well.
Before she realized it, she had been working til 8 PM. It had been a long day and she was tired and hungry. She also wondered about Lynley. Well, I guess it couldn’t hurt to ring him she thought as she took out her mobile. She punched in his number and pressed “call” with a half-hearted sigh.
Lynley had just finished having something to eat when he heard his mobile ringing. He jogged over to the coffee table and looked at the caller ID. It said “Havers”. “Hmmm,” he said as he opened the phone.
“Uhm,” Havers was suddenly unable to come up with anything to say. “How’re you doing?”
“Fine.” Oh God, thought Havers, this is positively awkward! “Uhm, sir? I was wondering if you wanted to have something to eat?”
“I just ate, Havers.” Just now, Lynley wished he hadn’t had anything to eat. He would quite like to share a meal with Barbara.
“Oh,” she replied. “Well, then, I guess I’ll just go home…”
“Wait, Barbara,” said Lynley.
“Come over. I’ve got some leftovers if you don’t want to eat alone.”
“That’s quite alright, sir. I don’t want to interfere…”
“Interfere with what? I have nothing to do and nobody to do it with. Just come over and have something to eat.”
“Uhhh…” she was stalling. I shouldn’t do that she thought.
“Please?” asked Lynley. “I’d like to have your company.
“Good.” Lynley sounded relieved. “Be here in a half hour.”
“Ok. I’ll see you then.” Havers snapped her phone closed. Shit, I can’t believe I just made a date with him. I don’t even know if it’s a date. Well, maybe I should change so I can give him his shirt back. She looked down at the shirt. She almost didn’t want to give it back. She loved the way it smelled.
Lynley snapped his phone shut. I hope Havers doesn’t misjudge anything he thought. He really had to make it clear tonight what they were. Friends, coworkers, colleagues… nothing more. By the time the doorbell rang at precisely 8:30, he had convinced himself that that’s all they were.
Havers arrived on his doorstep at 8:30 exactly. Usually she wasn’t so punctual, but this seemed very important to her and Lynley. She pressed the button that activated the bell inside. She was quite nervous. She was going to tell Lynley that they were just friends. Nothing could happen between them, although she couldn’t deny that her heart was telling her otherwise.
Lynley came to the door, dressed comfortably. Jeans and a t-shirt. Oh my God thought Barbara. Does he want me to jump him? He looks so fucking hot. She shook her head slightly to get that thought out of her brain.
Lynley opened the door to his house. Barbara was standing there, in his shirt, looking quite nervous. She looks very cute when she’s nervous he thought as he let her in. “Make yourself at home,” he said as he went into the kitchen.
Barbara sat down on the couch, where the day’s earlier activities had transpired. She shivered slightly, thinking about how it felt to have his arms around her. She was startled from her thoughts when Lynley called out into the living room, “Put on the telly if you want to. There’s a cricket match on, as well as two football games.”
“Ummm, ok,” said Havers. She turned the telly on, and started skipping through the stations. News, cricket, football, football, drama, comedy, American show, American show, another American show… Wait, was that CSI? She flipped back one station, and tuned into CSI. She just loved the way the team worked together. She was also fascinated with forensics and American culture.
“Ahhh, picked CSI, eh?” asked Lynley, as he placed a hot plate of food in front of her on the coffee table.
She looked down at the food. Taking a whiff, she realized she hadn’t eaten since 1 PM and that was a noodle bowl flavored with curry. She was famished. “Thank you,” she said to Lynley, picking up a fork and digging into the leftover fish and chips on the plate.
“Hungry, eh?” asked Lynley.
“Yeah,” said Havers, as she wiped her mouth with a paper towel he had put next to her plate. She finished up in record time, not leaving anything on the plate. “Do you have anything to drink?”
“I totally forgot about that,” said Lynley. “Yes, I do. What would you like?”
“Water or Coke or something.”
“I’ll see what I’ve got.”
“I have water.” He brought the bottle of water to Havers on the couch.
“Thank you, sir.” She opened it and took a long swig.
Lynley had to look away from her neck as she drank from the water bottle. Luckily, there was the show on the telly to distract him. “CSI?” he asked.
“Yeah. I like the show. Is it ok if we watch it?”
“Yeah, I’ve got no problem with it. I like the way the team works together.”
Lynley settled back on the couch to watch the show. Havers did too, but she sat slightly away from him. She wasn’t sure what she’d do if she sat really close to him. The show was on, but neither of them seemed interested in paying much attention to it. They were more interested in paying attention to each other.
Lynley shifted over to allow Barbara to sit closer to him. He was taking a huge risk with this act, but Havers moved over into the vacant area. “Are you all right, sir?” she asked, as she settled next to him.
“I’m fine. You?”
“Are we ok? You know, between us?”
“What do you mean?”
“I didn’t do anything improper earlier today?”
“No, you were fine. I think it helped me.”
“Yeah. I needed some human contact. I haven’t had it in a while.”
They sat in silence again for a while. Lynley leaned his head back on the couch again. He closed his eyes and started to relax into a light sleep.
Havers leaned back into the couch as well. Her eyes became heavy; somehow she knew she shouldn’t fall asleep on the couch, but she couldn’t help herself. She relaxed and started to fall asleep with the TV in the background.
At 2 AM, Lynley woke up to something moving against him. “Ungh.” He looked down and saw Havers leaning against his chest. She had pulled her legs up onto the couch and fallen asleep next to him. She must have moved around in her sleep, because she wasn’t that close to him when he fell asleep. He moved around slightly, not meaning to wake her up. It didn’t work. She woke up next to him.
She suddenly realized the compromising position she found herself in. At least we’re both wearing our clothes she thought. Lynley realized what she was thinking, and before she could react and pull away, he wrapped his arm around her. “Uhm, sir?” Havers questioned hesitantly.
“Uhm… your arm…”
“It’s around me…”
“I know. Just go back to sleep.”
“Ok.” Havers was too tired to argue. She fell asleep in that position, on the couch. Lynley also fell asleep. It felt nice to have someone next to him, sleeping.
Havers shifted in her sleep, again. This time, she was more comfortable, with Lynley’s arm around her and all.
At 6:30 in the morning, the sun started to stream through the curtains in Lynley’s living room. It woke Havers up, but not Lynley. She looked over at her sleeping boss and wondered what she should do. That Kinks song came to her head: “Should I stay or should I go?”. She decided to stay; at least until Lynley woke up. She didn’t just want to leave. That would leave all of their feelings just hanging there, unresolved. She did have to go to the bathroom though, and extracted herself from Lynley’s arm without waking him up. It was something she had learned back in school, when she actually had a boyfriend. She walked off toward the bathroom.
Lynley woke up without the warmth of Barbara’s body next to him. What happened to her? Where did she go? Did she just get up and leave? Lynley got up from the couch and looked outside at the drive. Well, her car’s still here. She didn’t go very far. Just then he heard the toilet flush from his downstairs bathroom. She’s in there! He walked over to the door.
Havers opened the door to the bathroom, and saw Lynley standing there. “Oh, you startled me, sir! I wasn’t expecting you to be standing there!”
“Uhm, sir? Did anything happen last night?”
“No, we just slept.”
The awkwardness built up between them again. Havers didn’t want anything to be strange between them, so she said, “I’m sorry sir, if this is awkward.”
“It’s ok. I need a little time to figure things out, but I think I know what I need.”
“Ok. I need some time too,” said Barbara. “This is really strange.”
“Well. It’s not as strange as it could be.”
“What do you mean?”
“Well. Nothing really happened. You were comforting me. I’m sure things can go back to where they were.” Anyway, I hope things can go back to the way they were.
“So… we’re friends then?”
“Ok,” said Havers, with a slightly sad look on her face.
“Is that the way you want it?” Lynley asked.
“Yeah. We don’t need anything else strange to happen.”
“Uhm… I should go. I need to take a shower and that stuff before I go to work.”
“That’s fine. Come back after work tonight, ok?”
“Human companionship. I need some, and so do you. We’ll have dinner again.”
“That’s acceptable. I’ll be here after I get off work.”
Havers left, feeling better about what just happened between her and Lynley. Lynley watched her leave, feeling like things were changing in his life. For the better.
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