Speed lets himself into Eric's car, sitting in the passenger's seat with a sigh "Can you believe those women?"
"Which women?" Eric asks with little interest as he back out of his space, heading for their usual diner for lunch.
"The women in the case!" Speed continues his rant, his disgust evident "I don't know which ones are worse, the women who're getting paid to wreck families and tempt husbands, or the wives who hire the women! Why be with someone you can't trust?"
"Isn't that the pot calling the kettle black, Speedle?" The Cuban replies evenly, not taking his eyes off of the road.
"What's that meant to mean?" Speed demands, not so calmly.
"Well, you're dating me but you obviously don't trust me. You've accused me of cheating almost daily for the last few weeks. At least." Eric points out, barely able to keep his anger and hurt from the accusations in check.
"You don't come home til late at night, you don't answer my calls or my pages; you turn up late for work, what am I supposed to think, Eric?"
"As my boyfriend," Eric hisses as he pulls over "You're supposed to trust me when I say I was helping a friend!"
Speed rolls his eyes "Whatever." He gets out the car, storming off.
A week or so later, Eric enters the lab nervously, dreading what Speed's going to say. They've been arguing so much lately and ever since Eric showed up late for work this morning, having taken a beating, Speed's had a weird look on his face.
He can feel Speed's eyes on him as he pulls on his lab coat, wincing from the pain that he feels pain ripple through his body as he pulls the garment on.
"So what's up with the 20 minutes?" Speed asks evenly.
"Let's get to it." Delko just wants to get on with the case, the last thing he wants or needs right now is a public scene.
"You wanna talk about it?" Speed pushes, not letting the issue drop. Eric appreciates the fact that his lover for once seems more concerned than angry.
"No, it's all right." Eric insists, keeping his eyes downcast. He's certain if Speed knew where he was, who he was with, he'd get accused of cheating again and that's something he really doesn't need, especially here.
"As a friend?" Speed tries one more time, using friend as a euphemism for boyfriend, as they always do when in public.
"As a 'friend', man, drop it." Eric replies flatly.
"All right." Speed concedes defeats. Eric knows that in refusing to talk he's hurt his lover, but it's better than another fight about non-existent infidelity.
Eric can feel Speed's eyes on him as they work. This isn't the end of their troubles, he knows it, but wishes it wasn't so.
That night Eric comes home late, afraid of what the fight will be about tonight, afraid that tonight may be the night that it all gets too much and they break up; he's filled with these fears every time he comes home lately. As if his day hasn't been bad enough already.
He lets himself in, finding the house in darkness. He sighs, shedding his jacket and shoes at the door, and heads to the bedroom. He needs a lie down after the day he's had.
The bedroom, too, is in darkness but Speed's sitting on the edge of the bed, looking thoughtful. Eric flicks the light on and they stare at one another.
"Angela Morton." Speed eventually breaks the silence.
Eric sighs heavily; he's just had this conversation with H.
"How do you know that name?" He asks, feeling so exhausted from the day's events.
"She came to see H earlier; I overheard their conversation and followed her out." Speed admits unashamedly "Turned out she knew all about me."
"So you know now that I haven't been cheating, then." Eric states calmly.
"Yes." Speed nod slowly, he doesn't look relieved and glad though "But I don't know why you didn't trust me enough to tell me about her."
"I know, I know," Eric sighs, his voice crack as he begins to feel a little emotional from tiredness. "I just…this job gets to me more than I show, ok? And I didn't want you thinking I was weak, or worse accuse me of hitting on victims, ok? H has already given me the lecture, ok? I'm really sorry Timmy, I'm really really sorry I shut you out." His exhaustion, pain and regret is obvious, it melts Speed's angry and icy demeanour. The elder man takes Eric into his arms, holding him close and reassuring him that it'll be ok.
They're going to be ok; they'll make it through this. Things will be different this time. They hope.