Mar. 24th, 2007

lvpd_sidle: (partners -- hadria)
The farewells had been brief; the party thrown by lab personnel not unexpected, nor unappreciated.

Her locker was cleaned out. Her name added to the Wall of Escaped Criminalists.

"I never envisioned this when I asked you here to investigate the Gribbs incident," Grissom said quietly, helping her carry things out to her car.

"Me neither," she admitted with a sigh, folding one of the backseats down. "I...don't remember what I was expecting."

Eschewing his normal reticence, he pulled her into a hug, feeling the wiry strength contained within her. "I will miss you. No one...could ever be you, Sara."

Her arms tightened minutely, but her voice was steady, peaceful. "You forgot to add 'thank God'."

"A careless omission." His voice went dry. "You and Mark will come by for dinner?"

"Of course. Give Jack my love."

She got in the car, starting it, and pulling out of the parking lot. The lab faded in her rear view mirror, and she resisted the urge to look back.

~

She had gone through the Loft before moving in, carefully disposing of old needles, forgotten stashes of drugs, other paraphernalia. Better security measures were in place, and already it felt....right.

Home, almost.

Documentation in hand (and she knew she'd be owing Collins the rest of her life), she went to the Manhattan lab, becoming acquainted with the personnel there, and her new supervisor, Hendricks. Though she would not officially start work until after her honeymoon, she thought it best to know where she stood.

"You have an impressive solve rate for one your age," Hendricks commented at one point, reading through her file.

She started to say, Hey, I'm 35, and caught herself. 29. I'm 29.

~ ~

She recognized the woman she saw in the mirror. It was her---and not her at the same time. The lines were eased, the marks of fatigue had disappeared. Even the scars from the lab explosion weren't as visible.

"A fresh start?" she wondered out loud, mouth twisted in wry amusement. "Guess I can handle that."

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Sara Sidle

March 2008

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