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hope, for which she had lamented

Chapter Text

She's glowing. That's such a cliché. Whatever.

Gina Linetti has taken the squad to Shaw's bar for a celebration, surprisingly understated for the woman who had organised elaborate and extravagant parties for each of her eight engagements.

Five of which Rosa has attended.

There's an uncomfortable twist in the latter's stomach, and she knows she has to tear her eyes away.

"Pull yourself together, Diaz," has been her mantra for this entire evening, and she repeats it to herself for the 24th time. It doesn't work, not even a little bit, in fact, her stomach squirms even more, seeming to have sensed that she's addressing her feelings.

Because it's not an engagement party.

•••

Gina saunters over to Rosa's desk wearing a complacent smile.

"Hey, Ro-Ro. Look at this baby!" she singsongs, thrusting a hand at Rosa's curious face.

"Huh. He really went all out, didn't he?" she replies, amusement lacing her voice. Directly in her line of vision is a sparkling ring. A large, round-cut diamond is set in the centre, smaller ones clustered around it, and all are set in a shining, platinum band. "Guess he's really into you, then."

"Uh, please. This man positively worships the ground I walk on, Rosa. I wouldn't be surprised if he decided to follow me around, throwing roses at my feet. It's exhausting being this radiant." She heaves a dramatic sigh, continues, "You'll be there for the party, won't you? Tonight?"

"Obviously. Free drinks?"

Gina's smile becomes devious, as she responds, "I'm not the one paying, so yeah. Open bar."

Before Gina turns to go back to her desk, where she does exactly nothing but scrunch up pages from an A4, narrow-lined notebook ("a travesty", Amy had declared later, when she had found out. "I could have given that notebook a loving home!") and throw them at Charles' head, Rosa blurts out, "Don't you get tired of these?"

Gina's eyebrows knit together in her bemusement, and she laughs out, "Why would I? It's great fun, for a couple of months. It's this . . . feeling. I don't know how to describe it. You aren't fully committed, but it feels serious, y'know? But a fun kind of serious." She watches Rosa's concerned expression intently, and hops down from her perch on the desk. "It's not going to last, silly. Anyway, I needed a new washing machine. Someone else has to pay for that now," she notes, her tone seemingly indifferent.

Rosa nods and turns back to the paperwork she was working on. "I'll see you tonight," she declares.

"See you tonight," Gina answers, and the detective glances back up at her retreating figure.

•••

The bar is so warm. It could be the three scotches that are making their way around Rosa's system, but in any case, she needs a breath of fresh air, she needs to get out of here.

She lifts her jacket, which is strewn over the chair beside her, and makes her way to the door -

"Rosa! What're you doing?"

Jake sits a couple of feet away from her, Terry sitting opposite him. The two of them have been engaged in deep conversation for most of the night, and Rosa supposes it's about something serious, as Jake's face hasn't cracked a smile the entire evening, surprisingly out of character for the man who just this morning had made a joke about the old dead guy lying at his feet. ("Looks like this guy had an exciting nap! Oh, oh wait! Why were we called out to a pile of dust - ow! Fine, I'll stop!")

She angles the rest of her body towards their table and replies, "I was just gonna-" she releases a breath she hadn't realised she was holding, and carries on. "I was gonna go and get some fresh air."

Her head is a mess right now, but she's not going to admit that to anyone. This entire situation is fiddling with her emotions in ways she couldn't have imagined. An unidentified feeling is weighing heavily on her, and her shoulders are slumped where they usually stand upright and tall. Jake seems to notice, because of course he does, Serious Jake wearing Serious Jake's Serious face, taking things Seriously for once. She had to be stuck with Serious Jake on the night she needed him least.

"I'll come with you," he declares, and stands from his seat.

"It's okay, you don't need to. Just - keep talking to Terry or something."
Terry pipes up, "I need to talk to the Captain about the precinct's numbers. Jake's good to go." He gives a nod of finality to Jake, and he gives one in return.

Rosa turns away from the table and walks out the door into the frigid November air.

•••
"What's the deal, Rosie?" comes Gina's determined voice. She closes the door behind her, and stares at the taller woman unyieldingly, arms folded against her frame.

Rosa has been avoiding her for most of the morning, ignoring the emails she's sent about how boring Holt's schedule is today, escaping to the copy room when she's in her general vicinity, and just now, making a beeline for Babylon when she had realised Gina was heading towards her desk.

She hadn't bargained on the other woman following her.

"Uh . . . nothing? Everything's okay. I just needed to go to the bathroom, Gina." She feels backed into a corner, and she has been - quite literally. Her leather-clad back rests against the cool wall, as Gina stands directly in front of her, her intense presence towering over Rosa.

"No. I don't think so. You've been avoiding me, boo." She relaxes against the door, but her gaze remains unwavering. "Now you're going to tell me what's going on, or we're not gonna leave this room."

She wants to melt into the ground, to become an inconspicuous puddle on the floor, but Gina would still probably stand over her, admiring her reflection and asking relentless questions about why puddle Rosa is constantly running away from her.

So she answers.

"Last night. We got into an argument about your relationship. It got messy, so I left." Her eyes are beginning to sting, but she blinks quickly before tears can appear. She can't let Gina know that this is affecting her. She can't let Gina know that she's . . . developing feelings.

She's expecting her to start up the entire debate again, to yell at her about minding her own business, but not . . . whatever this is. Her shorter companion's muffled laughter echoes around the room, and Rosa's alarmed. Gina must have finally gone mad.

She seems to sense her confusion, however, and straightens up with a broad smile on her face.

"Rosa. I was so shitfaced. I literally cannot remember half of last night. Two bottles of vodka does that to me, ask Jake!" Her tone is light and filled with mirth, and her hands come up to her eyes to wipe away tears of laughter.

"But-" Rosa exclaims, and is quickly silenced by Gina's reply.

"No buts. We're good." She advances towards Rosa again, arms open, and says, "First we have to cure that angst ridden face. Bring it in, Rosie Pose."

So Rosa does. She embraces Gina, buries her face in her sleek hair and holds on as though, if the other woman lets go, the world will tip.

•••

Jake leans against the brick wall of Shaw's bar and shoves his hands in his pockets to shield them from the cold air. A bright grin breaks out across his face, and his eyes meet Rosa's.

She can't help it, she's curious, so she asks, "What's up with you, man? You looked way too serious the entire evening. Now you look as though someone's about to give you the best news of your life."

His answer is filled with quiet joy, and he squints at her contentedly. "I uh, I'm proposing to Amy. Next week, actually. I was just talking about it with Terry."

She can hardly say she's surprised. Almost two years of dating, and they've never been anything less than sickeningly sweet. They're so in love, it makes her heart hurt.

She wants that, so badly. She thought she'd had it, with Adrian, to begin with. Now she finds herself annoyed at almost everything he does, his every habit, every hobby, every quirk.

And more and more in love with Gina Linetti.

"Good for you, man," is her genuine response. She smiles at him, and then turns her attention to the dark and glittering night sky.

"I was gonna do it this week, actually, but you know. Gina's pregnancy. I didn't want to take that moment away from her." His tone is relaxed and happy, but the mention of Gina and her unborn baby makes Rosa's chest constrict. It's seemed to do that anytime she's thought of the woman tonight, and it's painful.

Feelings are hard for her to deal with.

She focuses on the sky instead, breathing in, and breathing out.

Turning towards Jake again, she releases a ragged cough. She brings her hand to her mouth, and continues to cough into it. When she's finished, she pulls her hand away again, responds, "Yeah. I'm happy for her."

"Me, too." His tone becomes suddenly questioning. "You got a cold? You've been coughing like that all week. You ought to get that checked out, dude," he tells her, his voice filled with concern.

She closes her eyes. It's okay. She's fine. And then she opens them again. "I'm good. It's just a cough. I'm fine."

Opening her palm, she peers at a single, yellow petal, and lets it go.