The voice sounded distant, he wasn't paying attention something was nagging at him. He wasn't sure what it was but it was something about her. She was like heroin, he knew she was bad for him but she was addictive. Her pale smooth skin, her lips always wine colored but her mouth tasted like whiskey and cigarettes. Her dark eyes always boring into his. She always looked down at him with a smug smile, she knew she drove him mad. She knew he couldn't get her out of his system. He didn't want to get her out of his system.
"Elliot? Are you okay?" Liv's voice snapped him back to concentration.
"Oh yeah, Sorry I was...somewhere else," he said quickly, his eyes briefly meeting hers. She was studying him carefully, he could tell she wasn't going to let it go.
"You have bruises around your neck," Liv's voice rose just slightly in concern.
She gripped his neck tight, Elliot only protested when he began to have trouble breathing. He grabbed her hand shooting her a sharp look, and she backed off immediately. She didn't pull her hand away but she loosened her iron grip. Christ she was tight, her damned eyes, they never left his they bore into him as she rode him hard. He didn't know how long he could keep it up. She had some kind of stamina.
"Elliot!" her voice was sharp jarring him back to current.
"It's nothing Liv," he said finally, a small smile playing across his features.
"It looks like someone tried to strangle you, what do mean it's nothing?" she lowered her voice, but her tone was firm.
Her lowered tone didn't stop Fin from overhearing them as he walked by, "Elliot's got himself a new girlfriend," he smirked a little.
Liv looked between the two men, her face flooding with a little relief and perhaps a hint of embarrassment. Elliot pursed his lips slightly in a bit of humored annoyance, "She's not my girlfriend."
"Oh yeah? Then what is she?" Fin teased.
Elliot gave him a look, he knew the answer, even if words left him at a loss. He didn't want to say fuck buddy. They weren't buddies. They were barely on a first name basis. He knew the first time the woman wasn't even going to ask, but Elliot had asked her name. He only got a first name, Hope. In retrospect he wasn't even sure that was her real name. There were a lot of things a bit...fishy about her.
"Yeah well, tell her to take it easy you're going to end up looking like one of our victims," Olivia commented shaking her head with a small smile, but the concerned furrow in her eyebrows not leaving just yet.
She didn't even know about the bruises around his arms, the claw marks, the bite marks. His muscles still screamed in protest of every movement. His ribs were sore but he'd be damned if he didn't want more of her. Liv had moved away leaving him to his thoughts as the day was rather slow, he was working on paperwork, or supposed to.
Fin however was still staring at him. "Somethin' else botherin' you?" Fin asked him.
Elliot looked up, and shrugged, "I guess something is...off about her,"
"Like what?" he asked now leaning against the desk.
"I can't quite place my finger on it, though I'm pretty sure the name she gave me was fake" Elliot told him, "There's something off...sometimes she looks like she's been fighting, she always looks exhausted, and..." he scratched his head almost as if he knew he was sharing a little too much information, "She always tastes like whiskey."
"Maybe somethin's up," Fin arched an eyebrow at him chuckling softly, "Or maybe you're seein' a victim where there ain't none, ever thought to ask her?"
Elliot raised an eyebrow, with the barest hint of a fond smile "Trust me there is no asking her anything when she wants something, she's...demanding...pretty straight to the point and then gone, she doesn't really want to have a conversation," and he was hard pressed not to give her what she wanted. Who wouldn't?
A barest hint of a smile crossed Fin's face, a light chuckle at that, "So why don't you try askin' her when she doesn't want something?"
They found perps that didn't want to be found, why couldn't they find someone that occasionally wanted to be found.
It wasn't as easy as Fin had made it sound, but it never was. After showing her picture around at a few bars, Elliot began to get an idea of where she went and how frequently. They narrowed it down to the most likely place to find her, it was a hole in the wall biker bar. It didn't look like a place that would be so friendly to a girl like her. As soon as he thought the thought he corrected himself, he didn't even know what 'like her' was. It took them three days to find her there.
"Not bad," Fin commented quietly as they watched her walk in, and command the attention of the entire room with her posture alone, confident and dominant. She walked as if she could kill everyone in the room with a look. Fin and Elliot sat in the back, Elliot's back to the door. They didn't approach her immediately, Fin however, tried a little experiment in the noisy bar, "Hope!" he called out. Elliot wrinkled up his head, but much to his relief and annoyance, the woman didn't even turn her head, either she didn't hear him or that wasn't her name. Fin's eyes squinted watching her as she spoke rather closely with a man at the bar. It was her hands he was watching they were quick, she pocketed the man's wallet and he didn't even notice, "Looks like your lady friend's got sticky fingers, she just lifted that guys wallet like a pro," Fin noted, upon closer inspection he commented, "It also looks like someone punched her in the face."
Now Elliot twisted around to look, but he couldn't see her face, she'd shifted now trying to leave the man at the bar but he insisted on talking to her. Elliot stood up finally having had enough of watching from afar. Fin followed behind but stayed back a little ways giving them some space. Elliot caught her the elbow and turned her to face him. He frowned slightly, her lip was split , there was a dark purple bruise on her cheek bone. At first she looked surprised, she didn't pull away from him, her face twisted into anger, but before she could say anything Elliot spoke, "Why don't you give that man his wallet back and talk to me outside?" It wasn't really a question.
She ran her tongue over her teeth in an annoyed fashion, as the male patted himself down, to find, he was in fact missing his wallet. "Hey...you bitch...no wonder you got hit in the face," he growled standing up abruptly nearly knocking the bar stool over.
She straightened her posture out apparently preparing for the fight that the man was itching to start, but Tutuola put himself in between the two pushing back his coat to reveal his badge, "Like hittin' women, huh?"
"Aw come on, bitch took my wallet!" he whined his posture sinking a bit at the sight of the badge.
Elliot noted that 'Hope' stiffened her eyes locking on Fin's badge, her movements halted and she was froze in place. Fear? It was hard to recognize on her. "She's gonna give it back too," Elliot chimed in flicking his eyes from her to the male and back again. It took her a moment to actually move, but she did grudingly pull the wallet from her pocket and toss it back at the man who promptly searched through it to make sure it was all there. Seemingly satisfied he stormed out. Elliot waited a moment before jerking his head towards the exit, "Outside, now," he said shortly.
She jerked out of his grasp and for a moment Elliot thought she was going to try and run, but instead she snapped, "Don't...touch me."
"Oh...now it's 'don't touch me'," Elliot rolled his eyes a little, holding up his hands at waist level complying. As they headed outside, Fin in front of her and Elliot behind her.
"What do you want?" she bit off shifting to face Elliot taking two steps to the side. It took Elliot a moment to realize why. Fin was no longer behind her, she wanted to see them both. He couldn't blame her. It was smart on her part but easily let him know she had no trust for them.
"What happened to your face?" Elliot asked harshly, "Pick the wrong pocket?"
"You should see the other guy," she responded promptly arms crossing in a defensive posture.
Elliot scrubbed his face, perhaps Fin wasn't the best to take advice from in this particular situation. He was realizing that his approach probably wasn't going to yield the answers he was looking for. Perhaps he should have talked to Liv. He sighed and tried again, "What's your real name?" he asked the sharpness in his voice gone.
"Why is it important?" she responded.
"Because lying about your real name implies you have something to hide," Elliot told her.
She chuckled softly shaking her head, "What's your point, detective? It's not against the law to hide things from someone I fuck occasionally," her response was bitter and sharp.
Elliot nodded slightly, pressing his lips together, she had a point. He flicked his eyes to Fin who'd taken up a spot leaning against the wall, his eyebrows raising at her words. "You're right, but it is against the law to steal someone's wallet, I can take you in and have you printed," he said with the dip of his head figuring it was too late to take back his rash actions now.
She rolled her eyes upward, her eyes lingering on the sky, before her dark eyes fell back on him. She took a few steps closer to him, until there was but a hair's breadth of space in between them. After her picking the pocket of the other man, Elliot immediately grabbed her wrists to keep track of her hands. She didn't pull back but stood on her tippy toes to speak into his ear.
"I've already told you, the only one who's getting handcuffed is you, that still stands," she purred.
He shuddered almost involuntarily, as her breathe floated over his ear. He hadn't tried to handcuff her but she'd misjudged his intentions. Elliot had still had his cuffs on him from work.She set those boundaries very quickly, and Elliot had agreed without explaining WHY he had the cuffs in the first place. He blinked himself back to the present finding her staring at him with a cocky grin on her face, apparently she'd gotten the desired reaction out of him. Fin was staring him down the silent question easily read in his gaze. Did he need to get involved? Elliot shook his head slightly, but Fin looked skeptical nonetheless relaxed a little but was a bit more attentive to the situation. Elliot sighed relenting slightly, and reached out and touched her jaw line lightly since the 'don't touch me' barrier had already been broken. He tilted her face upward to get a better look at the bruising.
"What happened?" he asked her again less harshly this time.
His efforts were rewarded with a slightly less defensive answer, the cocky smile faded into something a bit more genuine, a bit... "A dude tried to attack a girl in the alleyway yesterday, I dealt with it," Faith shrugged.
"Did you call the police?" he asked.
"No, I beat his ass," she replied.
He pushed her hair behind her ear chuckling softly, "If only I could get away with that," he muttered.
Fin chuckled slightly, and Elliot looked up at him and back down to her, "You gonna tell me your real name?"
"No," she said taking a step back from him. He'd have been more concerned but she was kind of cornered. Though he didn't expect what happened next. She coiled her legs and leapt up catching the bottom rung of the fire escape ladder and acrobatically flipped herself upwards. Elliot's eyebrows shot straight up at the unexpected escape, as Elliot couldn't jump high enough to reach it. She disappeared up the ladder and to the rooftop.
"Shit..." Elliot muttered but watched her go. Fin was beside him again watching her disappear, with a mutter of 'goddamn 'He pursed his lips, as Elliot didn't make a move to go after her. Elliot looked at him without saying anything and held out his hand, two strands of hair lay in his palm.
"Look at that...you were thinkin' with the right head," Fin smirked at him.
Elliot pursed his laughing softly, "Mostly..." he admitted.