It was way past dark as Vivian squinted out the front picture window of McKee's house. The wall clock chimed once for the half hour. "Half past ten, and still no Quinlan McKee." The blonde muttered to herself, she received a call from Tom at six saying the elusive P.I. had left his house on foot with some files. She had driven the route from Quin's to the Ross' five different ways and saw no sign of the woman. It was on her last route that Vivian had decided that she would be making some demands of the brunette when she did get home. There was no way she was going to worry over anyone this much and not have some benefits.

A soft snick from the kitchen door followed by Mike's distinctive footfalls alerted the detective that the brunette had finally come home. She made her way through the house silently in stocking feet and peaked around the corner to find the kitchen empty. She heard a soft thump of the big Labrador's tail against the wood floor and saw the soft glow of the laundry room light. Vivian silently walked to stand behind a partially undressed Quin who was uncommonly preoccupied or she knew she would have never gotten as far as she did without alerting the woman.

Quin pulled her soaked shirt over her head and let it fall to the floor with a thud. Her wet jeans were pooled around her ankles. She was chilled to the bone and was eager to get into something dry and warm. She was about to shed her bra when two hands came around her waist to clasp in the front of her resting on her stomach and a tall warm body pressed against her back. Suddenly she was quite a bit warmer even though she was just clad in panties and a bra.

"You have no idea how much trouble you are in."

Quin shivered as the words were whispered in her ear followed up by a teasing nip to her cold earlobe. It was in the back of her mind to pull away, but something stopped her. It just felt to good to be held by the blonde and she didn't want it to end. It took her a couple of tries to find her voice finally squeaking out an excuse as one of Vivian's hands moved up to rest just under her left breast, the woman's thumb traced the inside curve of her bra in the most distracting way. "I… umm, left my stuff…."

"At the station, I know. You could have called collect." Vivian placed several soft open mouth kisses along Quin's delicate neck.

A cross between a moan and a sigh escaped Quin's lips as she settled back against Vivian. "I had other things… mmmm that's nice, uhmmm… on my mind."

Vivian smiled as her thumb snuck under the edge of the black lace bra, "And now?"

"Now?" The brunette croaked as a whole different kind of moisture soaked her already wet panties while her nipple was stroked teasingly by Vivian.

"What's on your mind now sweetheart?" Vivian asked, as her fingers brushed past the elastic of the matching panties and met with soft curls she was sure were as dark as the hair on Quin's head. Sensing no resistance from the smaller woman she let her hand drop further cupping Quin's sex and giving it a firm squeeze.

"You're going to make me come." At that moment, Quin thought that she had never spoken a truer statement in her entire life as her hips surged into Vivian's hand.

"Would that be so bad?" Vivian herself was beyond aroused. She let her own hips gently move across Quin's firm backside, bending her knees slightly for the best possible contact as she continued applying pressure to Quin's mound. One of her fingers broke past the damp curls to be engulfed in slick heat.

That was all it took for Quin. That one little bit of contact sent her in a million pieces and back again as she came from another's touch, for the first time in the last three years. She shuddered as Vivian wrapped her in a tight embrace against her taller body preventing her from hitting the floor. Quin was well aware of the blonde's surging hips against her ass and pushed back to increase the contact, a few thrust more and she was supporting the detectives weight against her back as Vivian negotiated her way back from her own release.

The moments passed in silence as both women caught their breath. Vivian was the first to move as she extended a long arm and opened the dryer door producing a warm terrycloth robe. She silently removed the rest of Quin's clothes and wrapped the woman in warmth.

"Up or down?" Vivian asked taking Quin's hand.


"You sure?"

Quin knew why Vivian was asking. Grace had been the only woman in Quin's bed, and now she was inviting Vivian there. It was like asking permission to desecrate sacred ground.

"Positive. She would have wanted it this way. Hell she probably would have picked you out herself if she could of." Quin snuggled under the long arm draped across her shoulder.

"Maybe she did." Vivian spoke softly as they climbed the stairs. She guided Quin to sit on the side of the bed, "Do you want a t-shirt?" Quin shook her head.

"I want you naked in bed." Quin said as she took off the robe and began to get under the cool covers. "Not that I have the energy to take advantage of you."

Vivian smiled softly as she shed her clothing. She joined Quin between the sheets letting a soft sigh escape as she cuddled up to the brunette's back. Her hands roamed along Quin's side. "How do your ribs feel?"

"Sore, my head is okay…" She smiled at Vivian's chuckle, "Well, as okay as it ever was, not counting any previous defects." That received a snort and a pinch. "My legs ache, and my hand seems almost normal."

"You're a walking disaster area." Vivian pronounced sleepily and placed a soft kiss between Quin's shoulder blades.

"I've just had some bad luck is all. I feel like everything is turning for the better now." The PI yawned and scooted back into Vivian's warm embrace.

"I sure hope so Quin McKee." The blonde replied and tightened her hold. "I sure hope so." She repeated in a soft whisper as sleep claimed her.

There was no "morning after" awkwardness for the two women as they snuggled together. An occasional hum followed by a contented sigh here or there were the only sounds uttered until a soft knock came at the door. Neither woman made a move to adjust their position as the door creaked open and a dark head poked inside cautiously.

Quang surveyed the room and counted two bodies in the bed, which should have surprised him after seeing his boss single for so long, but it didn't surprise him. It simply made him smile. He found that smile reflected back by the blonde woman on the bed who was crooking a finger at him to come closer. He couldn't resist the order and crept into the room as quietly as he could to stand next to the bed. McKee's back was to him as he let a broad smile cover his slim features.

"Is everything okay?" Vivian asked in a soft voice.

"Fine, fine." Quang nodded still smiling, "Is everything here copasetic?"

Vivian blushed a bit but recovered, "Very. She got in late, and soaked to the bone, and…"

"And she's awake so you can stop talking about her." Quin rasped in a sleepy voice. "Can you and Quang discuss me some other time maybe?" The brunette burrowed deeper into the covers and Vivian's cleavage.

"I was just worried about you McKee." Quang defended.

"Thanks. Now go away." Quin mumbled from her position.

Vivian laughed softly, "Go on. We'll be down later."

"Yes. Later." Quin echoed.

Quang nodded and gave a small wave to the detective as he exited the room. He went off in search of Anthony and the children. Maybe a trip to the mall this morning was in order. It would give the couple some quiet time. He would drag Justin and the girlfriend along for support. He made his plans as he padded softly down the stairs.

"Want to talk about it?" Vivian questioned as a wandering hand cupped and gently squeezed her right breast.

"You have great boobs." Quin said with a smile.

Vivian chuckled, "Thanks." The hand wandered from her breast down her side to her rear.

"And a great ass." Quin added as she squeezed the muscle.

"Glad you like it," Vivian smiled, "but you're avoiding the question."

"No. I'm distracting you."

"It's not working." Vivian said as she captured the inquisitive hand before it did go someplace distracting. "Where were you last night?"

Quin sighed and rolled onto her back, "I had a little meltdown."


"I kind of snapped. Something the captain said to me, next thing I know I'm in the alley where it happened." Quin glanced at Vivian who looked back at her blankly. "The alley where Grace was killed." She clarified. Blonde eyebrows raised in understanding and a silent request to continue. "I kind of had a flashback thing…"

"About the night Grace was killed?"



Quin sat up pulling the comforter with her. She turned and sat facing the still reclining detective, "I remembered." Quin closed her eyes, "I remembered everything, not like before where I was focused on her dying and the pain that caused, but everything. I remembered what she said." She reopened her eyes to gaze upon a thoughtful Vivian. "I picked up some files…" she stopped speaking as Vivian rolled over and returned with the crumpled plastic bags that held the stack of folders she had retrieved from Tom Ross the night before, "When did you…"

"Last night. I went down to put your wet clothes in the wash, I thought they might be important."

Quin smiled, "Thanks." She pulled the files free of the bags and tossed the bags on the floor, "These are the cold cases that Grace and Tom were working on when she was killed." She opened the files one at a time, lying them face open to expose photos of children. Soon the top of the bed was nearly covered with the faces of twelve smiling boys and girls. "There are thirteen files, thirteen children who went missing in a four-month period in 1985." Quin opened the last file and laid it on the top of the others.

Vivian sat up pulling her legs under her to peer at the last file Quin had open. She took a long look at the picture of a little boy, immediately recognizing the shy smile, the sandy blonde hair, and the big blue eyes. "You're kidding me."

Quin shook her head. "Nope. Justin, or should I say Christopher Justin Dawson, went missing just three days short of his fifth birthday." The brunette turned to the second page of the report and lifted a yellow sticky note from a page, "Grace has his parents down to being moved to a place outside of San Diego proper, a place called Lemon Heights. I think we need to verify that." The P.I. ran her fingers over Grace's barely legible scrawling.

"I can handle that if you like." Vivian offered reaching for the note. When Quin wasn't forthcoming with handing over the small square of paper she laid her hand on the brunette's arm, "I'll give it back sweetheart. I know this must be hard on you."

Quin blinked a few times still tracing Grace's hastily written letters. She recalled the numerous times she had teased the woman about her serial killer handwriting. McKee's lips twitched into a small smile, "I'll probably have to translate it for you." She extended her hand toward Vivian, the note dangling from two of her fingers.

The blonde detective took the note and gave Quin a reassuring smile. She glanced at the note, "Its not too bad, looks a lot like Tom's writing."

"They shared many qualities. It made them a good team." The brunette tilted her head at the Vivian, "You're different though. I think you balance Tom."

Vivian was reaching for her cell phone on the nightstand as Quinn assessed her. "Balance?" she questioned as she turned back.

"Yeah, you know like yin and yang. You're all diplomatic and Tom, well Tom is more Captain Courageous."

"Captain Courageous?" Vivian laughed as she scooted to the center of the king size bed to lean against Quin, "I can't wait to call him that!" She opened her phone, pressed two buttons and held it to her ear. The resulting conversation confirmed the address and telephone number. The couple decided that they would call Christopher Dawson's parents after a while. "I've got more news." The blonde started, "Franklin was at the storage building last night with Gentry and a fellow Quang believes is working for Peers, a Simon Days."

Quin's brows drew together, "Why would Peer's personal assistant be there?" She asked herself mostly not expecting an answer from the detective. "Franklin is dirty, definitely dirty, and scared. I'm guessing that's why he had me in for the shooting of that wannabe. Gentry, well he's a done deal as far as I'm concerned. You should have no problem getting him with what Justin has already told us. Now Days is something different. Where does he fit in?"

"Could Peers be involved?" Vivian asked as she pulled a couple files toward herself and perused the information.

"No way. He was as distraught as could be. I didn't get that vibe off him. If he was involved, why would he pay me to find the kid after not getting anywhere with the locals? Nope, I believe Peers is clean. This Days guy may be connected with Gentry, or owe money or something and set the Peers deal up to pay the debt. Gentry pulled down $25,000 for Scott's sale."

"I'll run Simon Days." Vivian stated as she pushed the files off her lap and swung her legs from the bed. "What to do about the storage place?"

Quin closed and stacked the files and emerged from the bed as well, "Quang and I can handle that."

Vivian shook her head as she pulled on her pants, "No way, Quin. This has to be air tight; I have a rotten cop involved here. I can't afford mistakes."

"We'll just take a looksee. I promise to call you if we find anything extraordinary. I'd like to connect someone to the place by name so you can at least get a search warrant. Trust me I want this to hold up legally too." Quin argued as she came to stand in front of the tall blonde.

Vivian sighed, "Okay, you take the building," she held up a long finger, "but, if there is anything, and I mean anything that looks remotely like evidence I want you out of there." She pointed the digit at the brunette, "You understand McKee?"

Quin smiled and stood on tiptoes, "Perfectly." She replied with a sweet kiss to soft lips, then turned and disappeared into the bathroom.

Vivian shook her head, she decided she needed to get to work right away for a search warrant for the storage facility. She had a feeling she was going to need it. As she was pulling on her shirt a distant knock caught her attention. It was a demanding knock and from what she could tell it was coming from the front door of the house. Quin had already turned the shower on and Vivian was not keen on disturbing the woman so decided to answer the door herself. She fluffed her hair in the dresser mirror and loped down the steps. She opened the door to find an angry looking woman with two uniformed officers on the porch. "Can I help you?"

"Dorthea Lore," the woman clipped and pushed a business card into Vivian's chest as she boldly and uninvited entered the house, "CPS, I'm here to take the minor children of one, LaTisha Gordon into state custody."

Vivian looked at the business card and reached for her phone from her pocket. She waved the uniformed officers in and closed the door on the fall morning chill. She dialed the number on the card and questioned the person who answered if indeed Ms. Lore was an officer of the state. Of course she did it loud enough for the woman to hear her, and smirked as the woman's face reddened with anger. After confirming the woman's ID, Vivian looked up and down the hall and tilted her head to listen for any sign of children. She then looked at the woman who seemed to be on the verge of exploding, "I don't think they're here." She stated.

"Search the place." The woman ordered the police officers, which looked to the tall blonde for permission. "I said search the house for the children." She spoke more harshly.

Vivian shook her head, "Go ahead guys. Just be careful. The owner is in the shower upstairs and she might not appreciate being barged in on." The men nodded at her and the corporal shrugged in apology as he passed her to do the bidding of the CPS worker. "If you had called first, this would have been easier." Vivian stated as she tucked her shirt into her pants not caring if the woman watched or not. She then walked to the hall table and picked up her gold shield and clipped it to her belt, an act that didn't go unnoticed by the other woman. "Excuse me for a moment, and don't touch anything." She warned. Quang had shown her the gun safe the previous night and gave her the combination. It was touching how the man was so insistent that she store her weapon so the children wouldn't be in danger. She retrieved her gun and holster and clipped it at her hip, along with her cell phone. She still needed to get home and shower and change, but there was no way she was going to let the CPS worker push Quin around, and a sergeant detective was a good deterrent to those who wished to use their power to heap abuse on civilians. She walked back into the hall and leaned against the wall simply staring at the frumpy woman across from her.

"I'm not scared of you." Lore quipped nervously.

"That's good; no reason to be afraid." Vivian returned with an insincere smile.

Quin was ruffling her hair with a towel as she came down the stairs, a uniformed officer passed her on his way up and she had to do a double take, "What the…" She looked down at the bottom of the stairs finding her lover scowling at the familiar CPS worker from the day before, "Oh, its you again." The woman held up a sheaf of paper and shook it at McKee.

"I'm not leaving until I have the children Ms. McKee."

Quin took the papers and leafed through the legal document, "I can't believe you think they'll get better care in the foster system than here."

Lore cast a disgusting look from one woman to the other, "Your lifestyle choice is unacceptable."

"And Ms. Gordon's was better? I suppose you've already helped her arrange bail and will return the children to her just so she can get her welfare money to exchange for more drugs. You people make no sense to me." Quin pushed the papers back at the state worker, "And it's not a choice, Ms. Lore." She walked over to the detective, reclining against the wall, and placed a chaste kiss on the woman's smiling lips, then disappeared down the hall toward the kitchen.

"Disgusting." The CPS woman groused.

"Isn't it though?" Vivian smirked.

The uniformed officers returned to the foyer to report that the house did not contain any children.

"I'll wait." Dorthea Lore said as she parked her butt on the third step facing the door.

Vivian raised a blonde brow at the woman then turned to the police officers, "I'll make sure Ms. Lore gets what she's came for. I for one understand you might have better things to do. If she likes she can call for back up when the kids get back, but I doubt it will be needed." The corporal thanked the detective and instructed the CPS woman to call if she needed help, then left with what could only be described as a sigh of relief. "If you'll excuse me ma'am, I'll be back in a few." She said as she passed the woman entrenched on the stairs headed to find Quin. The kitchen was empty, but there was an unrelenting thump coming from the floor. Vivian sighed as she made her way to the basement, her new lover certainly could swing a mood, and from the aggressive beat of the blaring punk that permeated the closed in room at the bottom of the stairs that mood had turned angry and aggressive.

I say fuck authority

Silent majority

Raised by the system

Now its time to rise against them

"Lovely." The blonde muttered as she came up behind McKee who was leaned back in her chair, her head tipped back, eyes closed. Vivian slowly picked up the remote to the sound system from the corner of the desk and lowered the volume to something not quite as painful as ear boxing. Hard gray eyes popped open and stared at her. She gave her best smile, "Making a statement?" She asked in reference to the harsh lyrics as she perched on the edge of the desk.

"Those kids are going into a system that cares little or nothing about them. I just don't see why they can't stay here." Quin knew she was whining, but it wasn't fair and she liked the little people, even when they were underfoot.

"Not up to us to decide these things."

"How can you stand to work for them?" The brunette asked from her reclined position.

Vivian folded her arms in front of herself. She had a feeling this was going to be a long-running argument for the two of them if the set of Quin's jaw was any indicator of her feelings on the subject. "I do my best everyday. It's not perfect, but the law is always a work in progress. I'm a part of that evolution. I hope a positive part."

"But it doesn't work!" Quin snapped and sat up.

"And what you do does?" Vivian retorted more harshly than intended, her voice loud as the punk anthem ended and a soulful Etta James crooned against a sultry saxophone.

Quin blinked a few times and sighed, "I'm sorry."

Vivian's shoulders dropped and she stood, then taking a few small steps she came to kneel in front of Quin, "Me too." She leaned forward and gave Quin a reassuring kiss that soon became a heated exchange that had the blonde wondering how likely it would be that the CPS woman would come toddling down the stairs and be shocked to death if she were to pull the PI from the chair and had her way with the dark woman here and now. Just as she made purchase on the brunette's hips the shrill ring of Quin's cell phone tried to bring both women back to the reality of their day. "You going to answer that?" Vivian murmured against Quin's lips before another deep kiss.

"No." It was a barely audible word, spoken on a quick breath, just before Quin pressed her lips and tongue back into service. The phone continued to ring as the brunette freed Vivian's shirt from her pants and her hands splayed across the blondes back, her fingers digging into the cleft of the other woman's spine. She moved from lips, to jaw, to neck, grinning inwardly as Vivian contorted to give her more space to work. The phone ceased ringing for a few wondrously juicy moments where moans and soft gasps permeated the basement space, and then it started again.

Vivian growled at the insistent ringing, eliciting a chuckle from the woman feasting on her neck. She groped for the phone clipped to Quin's waist, finding it at the same time the PI found her earlobe and gave it a slurping wet suck that sent shivers through her entire body. She gently shook her head to move the lips on hers as she flipped the phone open and pressed it to her unoccupied ear. "McKee's phone, call back later." She panted and nearly got the phone closed when Quang's voice demanded her attention. Vivian moaned as Quin let loose her earlobe then bit her lip as the brunette pushed her shirt and bra up to expose her breast. "Not now Quang, just come home… shit." A nipple had now become Quin's new object of pursuit and the blonde struggled not to throw the phone across the room. "Twenty minutes is fine, … Oh fuck, …. Gotta go. Later." Her eyes rolled back in her head as the phone fell from her hand to land with a thud on the carpeted floor. "You're killing me." She admonished the woman who was now attacking her other breast. Vivian fumbled with Quin's jeans finally realizing the reason she couldn't find a zipper was because there were only buttons. She pulled and smiled at the satisfying, ‘pop' ‘pop' ‘pop' ‘pop'. "Lift."

The command barely registered with Quin, but a demanding tug at her jeans and a second command caused her to release Vivian's breast and lean back in her chair so the kneeling woman could peel the denim off.

"We don't have much time." Vivian said as she ran her hands up the insides of Quin's thighs. She winked at the other woman, "but I think we can manage." She gently pushed the brunette back down as she began to rise, "Stay." She once again ran her hands from Quin's knees up the inside of her thigh, turning then as she went so her hands rested on the top of each tanned leg, her thumbs running back and forth along the crease where leg met torso. "Take off your shirt." She quietly requested and licked her lips as Quin complied. Now the smaller woman lay nude before her, reclined back in the leather chair as far as possible without being totally horizontal. Quin's hands clutched the narrow armrests, her knuckles white with the effort to abide by Vivian's command. "You're truly beautiful, Quin McKee."

Quin felt herself blush hotly at Vivian's words. She'd hardly call herself beautiful, not with as many scars as she carried on her body.

Vivian smiled softly and leaned forward to place several soft, open mouthed kisses on Quin's thigh, relishing the play of the strong muscles under her lips. She placed a brief kiss upon damp, dark curls, and looked up into heavy, gray eyes. She watched Quin's face as she smoothly slid two long fingers inside her lover. A long moan from herself mingled with Quin's own sound of fulfillment to create a resonance of want and need. She rose up and leaned forward to cover the smaller body underneath her, praying the chair was as sturdy as it looked. She wanted to kiss Quin's slightly opened mouth, and found the journey to complete this want to be wonderfully erotic as her clothed body slid up the brunette's nude length. She finally reached her destination, one arm supporting her self on one arm rest, her hand just inside Quin's elbow, while the other hand was lost in wet heat and velvet walls. She felt Quin's hand latch onto her lower arm as she steadied herself on the chair, and leverage herself between the other woman's thighs. It was not a soft coupling. It was hard and fast, sweaty and noisy. It was quite possible the most delicious thing Vivian had ever done with another person in her entire life.

Quin was lost to the world. There was nothing but Vivian and what Vivian was doing to her. She whispered the other woman's name in a shudder of desire. She could feel everything, hear everything, taste and smell everything. Her vision was blurred one moment and then in complete focus the next as deep sapphire eyes locked onto hers. There she wished to be lost forever in that unwavering gaze. Their breaths came as one, sharing the air between them. Then like the proverbial tidal wave her pleasure peaked; her eyes closed and bliss settled over Quin like a blanket on a cold Chicago night by the lake. It engulfed her, leaving her shaking, weak and vulnerable. She came back to look in to her safe harbor, those blue eyes conveying thousands of things at once. Her body wasn't willing to let go of Vivian just yet and she mewed her displeasure as the blonde began to withdrawal from her. She moved her left hand and stopped Vivian from any further action with a firm squeeze to her right arm. "Stay." She again quaked as the detective repositioned her fingers with a proud little smile.

Vivian regained her breath, her arms cramping from the awkward position, but held fast regardless to discomfort. She felt Quin's grip lessen then a small pat on her arm, she took that as an indication to move and with a sigh she left the confines of Quin's body. She sunk back to her knees and hugged the brunette to her trying to convey her overwhelming emotions in a crushing embrace. She caught herself sniffling and felt the track of a tear on her face. She felt Quin's lips move against the skin of her chest and heard a small ramble of words but wasn't able to make them out, "What was that?"

Quin lifted her head from her place of comfort and smiled as she repeated, "Maybe next time we'll actually do this in a bed." She noticed the line of moisture on her lover's cheek and reached up to brush it away, "Are you okay?"

Vivian nodded and sniffled again, "Just can't believe I feel like this about anyone, I was always told about it, always read about, you know…" Vivian let her sentence drift off not willing to take the step to put words to the emotion.

Quin nodded understanding, but not ready to say the words yet either. "We should um…"

"Clean up," Vivian supplied, "the kids will be here soon."


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