Olivia has settled into a long drive back to the precinct after interviewing the family of SVU’s current suspect. Almost right away, Amanda falls asleep. Olivia chuckles quietly upon looking over at her, and she decides to just let her sleep. Olivia can’t blame her; she’s tired too, and she figures that one of them might as well be able to catch up on some shuteye.
Olivia briefly looks around for her phone cord, wanting to preserve her phone’s battery in case Fin or Carisi need her. She reaches over to look in the middle compartment, but before she gets to it, something stops her: Amanda grabs Olivia’s hand.
A surprised Olivia quickly turns to look at Amanda. She wonders why her heart keeps fluttering.
“Manda..?” Olivia says quietly, but Amanda is still asleep.
The realization washes over Olivia that Amanda grabbed her hand in her sleep.
Olivia takes a moment to weigh her options. Amanda probably didn’t mean to do that, to be holding hands with her. But still, a little comfort feels nice.
Amanda’s fingers are laced through hers, and Olivia feels warm. Not physically, necessary; it’s more of a feeling in her chest. And it surprises and confuses Olivia, but she ultimately decides that she shouldn’t wake Amanda up by moving just so that she can deprive them both of comfort. So she stays still, driving the squad car with one hand on the wheel as she relaxes.
Eventually Amanda stirs, and she looks up at Olivia, drowsiness taking over her features as her eyes flutter open.
“Liv?” Amanda questions as she squeezes her hand. Olivia expects her to pull away, but she doesn’t.
“You grabbed my hand in your sleep,” Olivia replies simply. “I, um, didn’t want to wake you.”
“In my sleep?” Amanda questions. “And here I was thinking that Olivia Benson of all people started holding my hand when I was unable to give consent.”
Olivia chuckles lightly. “Never.”
Olivia expected this exchange to be awkward, but it isn’t; but then again, she also expected Amanda to have pulled away by now. But Amanda is calm. Maybe it’s because she just woke up, or maybe she really does want to hold her hand.
“Hm,”Amanda hums lightly. “Well, this is okay.”
There’s a pause, silence filling the car.
“That’s what I thought. Why move, you know? It’s…okay,” Olivia says calmly, but she feels herself blush.
“Would you mind if I dozed off again?” Amanda asks. “I really didn’t get any sleep last night.”
“It’s okay; go ahead,” Olivia smiles.
“Alright,” Amanda smiles back, almost giddy, before closing her eyes and getting comfortable again, hand remaining in Olivia’s.
A few moments pass before Amanda murmurs, “Guess sleep me is more forward than awake me.”
Olivia smiles, squeezes her hand, and whispers “Nothing wrong with that.”
Amanda falls asleep, heart fluttering lightly as comfort spreads across the squad car once again.