(Also posted on Fanfiction.net)
I’m wide awake in bed. You lie beside me, sleeping as soundly as someone in our field can ever hope to muster.
I trace the scars on your chest. Not enough to wake you up or even cause you to stir; just enough to feel the unevenness of what was once smooth skin. The slashes were caused by a former colleague seeking the attention he never received. The slashes were caused because I couldn’t reach you in enough time to warn you and stop him. Because I failed you.
You finding me when you did is why I’m alive now, you’ve told me too many times to count.
My taking so long to put two and two together put your life in jeopardy. Again, I never bother to add. It’s understood.
My fingers move from the slashes on your chest to the two wounds near your shoulder, where you were shot the second time around. My coming to see you when you were undercover and getting caught by the perp you were shadowing caused these.
I wasn’t in the courtroom with you when you got shot in the arm. I was supposed to be. For the life of me, I can’t even remember why I wasn’t there, looking back on it now.
Doesn’t matter in the end; even when I’m not around, I’m getting you hurt. But it’s not just you; it’s everyone.
The stakeout that went south. Two civilians were killed and we almost lost a colleague too after I couldn’t get back to the store in time. Munch was in the courtroom with you when you got shot. Ryan is dead because I wasn’t able to piece together Stuckey’s crime wave in time.
Melinda…Alex…Casey…we almost lost them all. I was there, always around; just not good enough to keep them safe. I couldn’t do my job. The motto is to serve and protect; who am I protecting?
They have Patron Saints protecting people from just about everything now. Except for me. Maybe they can find someone. Pray really hard to Saint Someone or the Other and they’ll protect all of you from me.
You’re the resident Catholic. Look into that for me if you ever get some free time.
My stomach begins to groan, starved for me to provide it some nourishment. This would be about the time I sneak out of bed and have the wine you insisted on banning me from. You poured the bottle into the sink as you cleaned up from dinner.
Bastard. You know the only places that sell alcohol are closed. Even in New York City, the city that never sleeps, has to sleep sometime. Apparently, 2:47 AM is that time for everyone except for me.
Through the light that streams in from the window, I see red.
Your blood. Her blood. His blood; they’re on my hands again.