PAIRING: Bobby Dawson/Nick Stokes
SPOILERS: Set "For Warrick"
ICON: Made by lady529
DISCLAIMER: I wish I owned them :).
SUMMARY: Death affects everyone.
AUTHOR'S NOTES: All comments welcome! :)
Bobby closed the door behind him, hanging his head. He’d had to excuse himself from the Bugs and Elmer Fudd classic cartoon that Eva had chosen to watch. Even though it was animated, Bobby couldn’t stomach Elmer waving the gun around and pointing it in jest at Daffy and Bugs.
He needed Nick. It was the day before Warrick’s funeral.
He turned the bedroom stereo onto a rock station, shedding his clothes as he held back his sobs the best he could. Turning on the shower radio to blasting country music let the wave loose. Sitting on the toilet, he let it out; sobbing, crying uncontrollably.
The news of Warrick’s death had gone through the lab like a tsunami, large and unstoppable. He was in shock with the rest of his shift, autopilot. Mandy was a wreck; she just couldn’t stop crying. Archie and he’d shared a long tight hug in the men’s room. Seeing Gil walk through the office with Warrick’s blood on his shirt was too much. Bobby ran to his truck, not even bothering to clock out; driving to the crime scene with his siren on.
Nick’s seething anger was evident from a football field away. Bobby wasn’t allowed into the perimeter until he’d produced three picture IDs, luckily Eva’s school required the parents to get them. Bobby had never felt more helpless in his entire life as he saw Nick mechanically processing Warrick’s car.
“Ya’ shouldn’t be here.”
“Where should I be?”
“Ya’ should be takin’ Eva to school, I can’t do it this morning.”
“They said a CSI was down…” The tears began, and Bobby put his hand to his eyes, his face crumpled in devastation.
“I have to work. I love ya’.” Nick kissed him hard quickly, grabbing Bobby’s free hand in a vice grip. He watched Nick walk back to the car and Catherine.
Bobby’s hands shook as he drove to the house. They’d bought it six months ago, as an investment. He couldn’t stop rubbing his forehead.
As he parked in the driveway, he remembered that Eva was at the babysitter’s. Nick and he’d planned to go out after shift, and then everyone ended up working overtime because of Warrick’s case. The celebration was expected, and the labrats had been getting ready to have their own party.
He called Jenna and explained that he’d be a little late. He drove the two miles in a fog. Eva was scared when she saw him.
“What’s wrong?” Her face full of concern as he picked her up like he had when she was three, carrying her to the car.
“Someone shot one of the CSI’s this mornin’.” He tried to say without his voice shaking.
“Was it Nicky?” she demanded, face askew with fear, pushing her arms against his shoulders, looking at him.
“No. It wasn’t Nicky.” He’d hugged her tight, letting her backpack fall to the street.
“Daddy, are ya’ okay?” She felt him trembling.
“Yeah Princess. I’m okay. Nicky is fine. When I pick ya’ up from school today, I’ll tell ya’ what’s going on, okay?”
“Here, let’s get ya’ buckled in. Homework finished?”
“Is Archie okay?” She asked, her voice shaky, eyes watering.
“Yeah Princess. Uncle Warrick was shot, he’s on the way to the hospital.” He looked her in the eye, pinching his leg not to give away that Warrick was dead.
“Did they catch the bad guy?”
“Nick’s workin’ on it.” He sighed deeply.
They rode in silence. As he pulled her out of her seat, he held her close again.
“Daddy, let me down.”
“I’m sorry Honey, have a good day. Did Jenna pack your lunch?”
“No, Nick packed it last night, remember?”
“Yeah. I’ll pick ya’ up after school.” He kissed her forehead and held her tight.
“Won’t ya’ be with Uncle Warrick?” She asked innocently.
“Yeah, I guess either Nicky or I will pick ya’ up, okay?” He let her go as she squirmed.
“I love you Daddy.”
“Love ya’ too Princess.”
Nick’s truck was at the house when he drove up. Bobby parked his car and went to the door. The noise made him stop. As he leaned in, he could hear Nick’s groans in agony. Afraid, he entered quietly.
He found Nick on the living room floor, the grief overtaking him. He pulled him into his arms, trying to rock him and yet afraid. Nick buried his face into Bobby’s shoulder and they both wept uncontrollably.
“Hey.” Bobby heard Nick’s voice and opened his eyes. His neck and back were sore. They’d fallen asleep on the floor.
“I’m goin’ to my house.” Nick said matter-of-factly, rubbing his thighs.
Both men’s eyes were puffy with dark circles.
“I’m goin’ back to m’ house.” Nick said again.
“Honey, it’s empty. Member? We’re between tenants.” Bobby wiped his eyes.
“I need to be alone.”
“I …” Nick’s lips quivered. “I… I have to go …”
“Nicky…please…please…don’t go. I have to pick Eva up from school.”
“I can’t be here.” Nick got up slowly to leave.
“Stop it. Talk to me.” Bobby got up, feeling his knee hurt, grabbing Nick by the waist. “What?...Please.”
“How’m I gonna tell Eva that I let Warrick die?”
“What’re ya’ talkin’ about? I told her that he was in the hospital. I don’t understand.” Bobby‘s grip tightened.
“I can’t let my little girl down.”
“Nick, you’re talkin’ crack, your home is here, with us. It wasn’t your fault.”
“I should’ve walked him to the car.”
“Ya weren’t there,” Nick got a strange expression on his face that Bobby had never seen.
“It’s not your fault. Nick, it’s not your fault. Ya’ solved the case.”
“I’m gonna go, umm, I can’t put our little girl at risk.”
“What the fuck are ya’ talkin’ about?”
“McKeen has folks on the inside. They know about us. I can’t do it.”
“Sweetie…” Nick’s chin wavered.
“You’re throwing us away?”
“It isn’t a secret that I’m Warrick’s best friend.” Nick turned away. “Eva deserves to live a good life.”
“WHAT THE FUCK?” Bobby roared.
“I’m protectin’ you. Do ya’ really want to be in Witness Protection? There are still loyal people on the inside.”
“No, you’re not protectin’ me, you’re protectin’ you. And you’re sellin’ us out?” Bobby was astounded.
Nick shook his head. They kissed hard, and Nick left.
It’d been four days and they hadn’t heard from Nick. Bobby had broken the news to Eva about Warrick. She was doing the best she could. They both were. They had to get ready for a funeral tomorrow.