March 14th, 2006
Las Vegas, Nevada
She could barely believe it had been that long, but yes, it had indeed been thirteen months since their first…well date wasn’t the right word for that morning after she told him he had always been more than a boss to her.
Of course he had run afterwards, run from his own actions…and she had let him. Gil was a complex person, and when he didn’t understand something in science or a case, he worked at it until he did…but when it came to his own life…he ran.
And then she was suspended and he was back…and then he ran again, and she didn’t let it hurt her…well she didn’t let it show that time.
Then she was attacked at the mental institute…and that was the breaking point. After that, he didn’t run, and they actually had a relationship. A month later Nick had been taken and they all had gone through hell… But they had found him, and visited him in the hospital. He went home for a while, and her relationship with Gil seemed to only grow stronger. He had been frightened into action by her nearly dying, but nearly losing Nick had solidified his decision.
Or so she believed at the time…
When they had the case…when Zoë Kessler was killed and it turned out her mother was none other than the infamous ‘Lady’ Heather Kessler…Sara hadn’t pushed. She hadn’t even made any comment on the fact that Lady Heather was back in his life. She could remember the surprise on his face when she hadn’t been upset after learning that he had been the one to find her with her daughter’s killer. Sure she had been upset that Ms. Kessler had taken justice into her own hands, that she had been whipping him like he was an animal…they had the system they worked with for a reason.
And he had finally told her the truth about what happened between him and Heather so many years before…it was something they never discussed, past relationships. But she hadn’t been angry; she couldn’t judge him for keeping his secrets, after all she kept her’s. True he knew about her mother and father, that her mother killed her father. He knew that her childhood had been traumatic, but not the true extent of that trauma. She knew he was Catholic, but never why he left the church. He didn’t know if she had any religious upbringing, like the rest of those in her ‘faith’ it wasn’t something they broadcasted to the world, and since coming to Vegas she had lapsed so to speak…it wasn’t something to bring up. She knew that he went to UCLA; he knew that she went to Harvard and Berkley; he just didn’t know what years precisely she was at Harvard…
That’s how their relationship worked, they lived in the here and now, not the distant past, she honestly didn’t want to share her past, bring up bad memories…only a few people knew the true extent of her childhood, her ‘family’…but it was a given for each of them, none of them talked about their past except to each other…well, to be honest Jas had told one of her ex’s, then learned it hadn’t been the wisest decision when the relationship had ended a few weeks later.
Needless to say she was quite content in the fact that they never spoke of pasts. He was there to hold her after her nightmares, and she was there to hold him after his. It was enough…
Then she noticed he was hanging up calls when she walked into the room…not an everyday thing, but often enough to make her wonder what was going on. She thought he might have been planning something, never suspected it was something else…
But this morning she had heard him talking to someone about ‘tomorrow night’…he hadn’t known she was behind him in the doorway of his office. She had left; intent on coming back when he was off the phone, only to return and find Catherine in the room, the door partially closed as they talked. He had been in contact with Heather, he had been spending time with her…nothing major, nothing he shouldn’t have been able to tell her…
Then he told Catherine she was his soul mate…she left before Catherine could answer, headed towards where she had last seen Greg, told him to give Gil the information. No one had known about their relationship…well except perhaps Catherine so, she didn’t get questions about why she was choosing not to see him. She’d gone to her locker, clocked out early, and headed back to her apartment. Her first call had been to a 24-Hour locksmith to ensure she wouldn’t be bothered, then she’d put her headphones on and started packing. She knew she had time, it was her night off, and she knew he’d be pulling a double with the case he was on.
Perhaps she was over-reacting…no, she knew she was…but she was allowed…
She was entirely too proficient at packing, and was done packing up everything by noon. Even with waking her manager at six on the dot and making arrangements for her utilities and her stuff to be picked up and put in storage. Then she called a cab, leaving her car keys with the manager if anyone asked for them. By 12:30 she had a ticket and had gone through security, arriving at the gate with five minutes to spare for the one p.m. flight she’d managed to get a ticket on, true it was first class, but it was worth it.
Only then did everything hit her…grabbing her phone she moved past the first half dozen speed dial options, hitting number eight, she waited, knowing that she shouldn’t be in court...
“Hey,” Sara whispered, as her tears threatened to spill while walking down the ramp.
“Sar? What’s wrong? Are you crying?”
“Yeah,” she countered trying not to break down.
“Sar, what the hell is going on?” the other woman demanded just as the flight attendant came over and informed Sara she had to turn the cell phone off. “Sara?”
“I’m going home,” Sara answered, ignoring the flight attendant as the woman made her way down the aisle.
“What? Why?” she asked confused.
“I’m pregnant Bets…” Sara whispered just before the phone was pulled from her hand and she looked up at the flight attendant. Shaking her head she buckled her seat belt and watched the woman walk away, she knew she’d get her phone back at the end of the flight… “Damn, my phone card is in my suitcase,” she whispered before sighing and leaning back into her seat. Closing her eyes she let herself drift back to days when things were better…when they were all together, carefree as much as they could be and happy…
June 30th, 1986
Celtic Language and Studies Room
the door to the room, Sara glanced around, surprised to find she wasn’t the
first person there. Shrugging she headed down to the bottom of the stairs and
slipped into a seat at the end of the aisle, before searching in her bag for
her notebook and two pens.
“Hiya,” the only other person in the room spoke up and Sara looked over at the other girl, seated a few chairs away. The girl had a distinct English accent, dark blond hair in a ponytail that brushed her shoulders, and was wearing white jeans and a blue tank top.
“Hi,” Sara answered before tucking a curl of her own dark brown hair behind her ear. She should have grabbed a hair thing to pull it back, instead she sighed before sitting forward enough to pull it out from behind her back. Amazing how painful it was to get your hair caught behind your back…even if it was only around four inches below her shoulder blades when she didn’t bother straightening it.
“Elizabeth Luciano,” she greeted, turning her attention fully to Sara. “I was wondering if anyone else would actually be taking this class…”
“Sara Sidle,” she countered with a smile. “So was I.”
“Blimey, your parents named you Sara Sidle…do they realize it rhymes with Suicidal?” Elizabeth asked shaking her head.
Sara chuckled; she hadn’t heard that one before. “Actually my full name is Cassara; I decided to shorten it to Sara when I graduated. I’ll have to remember that one though…”
Elizabeth smirked, “Well, glad to help give you a new taunt you managed to get through life without. So, where are you from?”
“California,” Sara shrugged, not wanting to go into details. “You’re from England?”
“I was raised there,” offered Elizabeth, a shadow crossing her features briefly. “I was born in Orlando, spent the last four years there, after returning from England.”
“Hmm, both of us live in rather warm states…” Sara smiled, not willing to push the girl. “I’m dreading my first winter here…I’ve never even visited a place with snow before…”
“You haven’t?” a new voice drew their attention and both girls looked behind them to see another girl coming down the stairs. “Sorry, just shocked you’ve never seen snow,” she explained stopping next to them. “Rebecca Thorton, Brooklyn born and bred.”
“You got a lot of snow then,” Elizabeth smiled before introducing herself, Sara following suit. Rebecca was tiny, quite frankly, and looked rather like a pixie. Sara guessed her height to be 5’1” max, her light blonde hair ending at her shoulders.
“So, I’m not the only one taking this here class then…” Rebecca shrugged. “Thank God for that, mind if I take that seat?”
“Go for it,” Sara shrugged before Rebecca took the seat between her and Elizabeth.
“So, I’m seventeen, how old are yooze two?”
“Sixteen, I’ll be seventeen in August,” Elizabeth replied.
“I’ll be sixteen in September,” Sara added softly.
“Wow, I’m not the only one here who’s hecka young either then,” Rebecca grinned. “Thank God for dat. Hiya cheeks,” she continued as the door down by the bottom of the auditorium opened to reveal another girl. This one had long curly black hair that brushed her neck, and was about 5’5” by Sara’s guess. She was of Middle Eastern heritage, at least partially based on her slightly darker skin tone, and was wearing a long skirt of a light, flowy material and a white tank top. “Girls, this is Jasmine Rodgers, we got the same dorm. Jazzy, this is Betsy and Sara, there ure age don’t cha know.”
“Really?” Jasmine asked softly as she joined them. “Nice to meet you both, I’m Jasmine Rodgers, sixteen in case you’re wondering, I’m from D.C.,” she smiled. “Rebecca gave you a new nickname too?” she asked smiling at Elizabeth.
Elizabeth nodded, “Betsy?” she repeated looking at Rebecca.
“What? You can all call me Beccs, or Becca. Everyone needs a nickname.”
“Interesting…” Sara nodded while Jasmine took the seat next to Elizabeth, on the opposite side from Rebecca while Rebecca filled Jasmine in on hers and Elizabeth’s ages, and hometowns.
“So what made you pick this course?” Jasmine asked after a few moments of silence.
“My mother was Irish,” Elizabeth shrugged.
“My father was too,” Sara smiled. “Mom was Scottish and English.”
“Dad was Italian, obviously,” she shrugged. “What about you two?” she continued looking at Rebecca and Jasmine.
“Sounded interesting,” Rebecca shrugged. “Gives me a break from my first love of math.”
“Pretty much the same for me,” Jasmine agreed. “Need a break from Science and Math courses after all.”
“Scary that one, I’m here for the same reason.” Once more everyone looked up at the new voice, finding a fifth girl who had arrived early. “Howdy,” she greeted. “Juli Carlson, sixteen, Texas born, bred and raised.”
“We’re forming our own little group here, aren’t we?” Rebecca smirked before they repeated introductions. Juli was 5’8”-ish, with straight Auburn hair that ended three-inches below her shoulders, and bright, light blue eyes. She was dressed in a pair of blue jeans and a white t-shirt before slipping into the chair between Rebecca and Elizabeth.
After that the other students finally started to arrive, though there weren’t an exceptional amount of students in the class, thirty maybe. The five talked amongst themselves, comparing what majors they wanted, Elizabeth was thinking about law, Rebecca was there on a math scholarship, Juli and Jasmine were both leaning towards Medicine in the long run, while Sara herself was a Science fanatic as Rebecca put it. Each of them, were also there on scholarship, another thing to bind them together.
“Hey,” a male voice spoke before two arms wrapped around Sara’s shoulders from behind.
“Hey you,” Sara smiled looking back towards the bearer of the arms. “You’re late.”
“Got lost,” he shrugged.
“Of course,” Sara chuckled before turning to the other girls, “Guys, this is Billy O’Brian, we went to high school together back home. Billy this is Rebecca, Juli, Elizabeth, and Jasmine.”
“Nice to meet you,” Billy smiled, “So did I miss anything interesting?”
“We compared majors, ages, hometowns, all dat stuff,” Rebecca shrugged as she looked at him. Billy was 5’10” with pitch-black wavy hair that brushed his collar, with sideburns that Sara was constantly trying to talk him into getting rid of; and dark, coffee colored eyes.
“Well then, I should probably introduce myself,” Billy smirked. “William O’Brian, sixteen, born in San Francisco, here on a Math scholarship, but mostly to try and convert this one from Science.”
“Not going to happen, Billy,” Sara countered with a smile before the door Jasmine had come through, opened once more.
“Hello, ladies and gentlemen,” the woman in her mid-forties greeted as she walked in. She was dressed in blue jeans and a white blouse, her slightly wavy, dark brown hair swishing against her shoulder blades when she lifted the sunglasses from her eyes and slid them up to rest on her head. “Welcome to Celtic Language and Studies 101, I’m Professor Phillips. Aye, I’m from Ireland, no I’m not just doing this accent to drive ya all batty or ta somehow work inta the course work,” she continued, setting the binder she had been carrying in her arms down on the desk.
“Now then, I’ll warn ya all, I’m a wee bit unique, I like ta have all of me students involved in the class, so for today we’re gonna just go around, and introduce ourselves. Ya can say as much or as little as ye like. I’ll start o’course, I’m Professor Phillps as I explained, born and raised in Dublin, which o’ course gives me this lovely accent. I’m a bit of an odd duck, don’t worry about that, ye’ll get use ta me in time. But if ye have any questions, or concerns about the class as the summer progresses, then by all means, please come see me. Fair’s fair though, I might not be able ta help with everything. But I’m willing ta try. Now then, who wants ta go next?”
The rest of the class was spent going around the room, introductions of various lengths, some keeping them down to name, location, and major such as the five girls and Billy, some going on and on about everything they could think of. Finally though their time was up and Professor Phillips rose from where she had taken a seat on the corner of her desk.
“Well, until Wednesday then, we’ll get into the real meat of it all then. And as ye will soon learn ta translate Slán go fóill!”