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Firing Line

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“What the hell do you mean, she’s in there?”

“Lieutenant,” Carisi said slowly, holding a hand out as if to steady her. She wanted to slap it away from her. She couldn’t see straight. “She went to Jersey, she went to the house.”

“Why does she never listen to me?” Olivia breathed, running a hand through her hair and breathing out a shaky breath. She couldn’t breathe, she couldn’t think, she couldn’t move. Amanda is in that fucking house. She’s in that fucking house. I told her to be careful, and she’s in that fucking house. “She’s in the house right now,” she stated, not having fully accepted it.

“Yes,” he said coolly, and she wondered how the hell he was so calm then. She noticed briefly a flash of pain in his gaze, and she knew he must be shaken up. He was better at hiding it than she was for once. “She’s…she’s at gunpoint, lieu. We’re calling in ESU and – “

“Fin!” Olivia shouted, grabbing her coat from her chair and walking past Carisi out into the precinct, her head spinning through possibilities. She saw red, she felt hot tears threatening to spill over. She wanted to kill the sons of bitches. She’s okay, Olivia. She’s okay. “Fin you’re driving.”

“You got it, Liv,” he replied simply, tipping his head in understanding. His face made her nearly cringe. She saw concern in his features, the protective sergeant she’d grown to know over the years, and she looked away to collect herself.

“How many guns are there?”

“We don’t know,” Carisi said, and she whipped around to see him standing directly behind her. “She managed to text and tell us. She hasn’t responded, so she either hasn’t had the chance, or they found her out.”

“Okay,” Olivia said, steeling her features and squaring her shoulders, her teeth clenched. “Let’s go.”

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When they arrived, Olivia zipped up her NYPD jacket, nearly jumping out of the car when she saw the situation. ESU cars and unis everywhere, guns, hostage trucks. She was used to seeing all of it, but never like this. Never like this. She walked at a brisk pace, ignoring her detectives’ voices in her ears. All she could hear were her own thoughts. She’s okay. She’s okay. She’s okay.

“What’s the situation?” she said calmly to an ESU tech, leaning with both hands against a car door to steady herself.

“Your detective’s inside,” he said, pointing his gun in that direction. “The father has a gun, as does one of the sons. She’s being held at gunpoint, that much we know from her text, and we don’t think she’s been found out. The phone, I mean.”

“Yeah, I know,” Olivia breathed. So they haven’t found out. “So she’s inside, what can we do?”

“We’ve tried to get to LeBott,” he explained. “He won’t say much, told us to get away a few times, but mostly nothing.”

“Give me a megaphone,” Olivia whispered.

“We aren’t to that point – “

“Stand down,” she said louder, staring him directly in the eyes, wondering briefly if he could see the fire in her own. She wasn’t going to let him tell her how to handle a situation in which her own detective’s life was at stake. This was outside his purview, as far as she was concerned, and even if it wasn’t, she didn’t give a damn. “Give me. A megaphone.”

She was vaguely aware of Carisi and Fin rattling off suggestions to her, but she eventually put a hand up and faced them, noticing their defeated expressions and taking a breath.

“Let me handle this. Let me.”

It was a request, not an order, and they complied without hesitation, stepping back as she stepped forward and faced the house.

“Mr. Lebott,” she said into the megaphone, walking slowly towards the residence and noticing shadows flashing in the windows. God, let her get out. “Mr. LeBott, you have my detective. I need to know that she’s alright, okay? We just wanna talk to her, do you hear me?”

She got no response, and stood extremely still on the pavement, listening for anything. A whisper, a shuffle from inside the house.

“Mr. LeBott. Please,” she said, her voice breaking. Dammit. “My detective is inside. I’m asking for confirmation that she is alive and that everyone else inside is safe.”

She waited what seemed like hours, her heart beating in her chest so quickly she could hear the blood in her ears. She couldn’t wait any longer, she kept thinking to herself, and her fist clenched and unclenched at her sides, her breathing getting quicker. She’s inside. She’s alive. She’s inside. She’s okay. What if she isn’t? No, she is. But what if…

Suddenly, she heard a sound from inside the house that sounded like a cocking gun. She put a hand on her holster as her heart jumped into her throat, but then she noticed the door opening and a flash of blonde hair in the doorway. “Amanda!”

She was disheveled, blood dripping down her forehead, but not enough to constitute a major injury, Olivia noted. Her hair was tangled and over her face, and Olivia was close enough to see the tears running down her cheeks. Her heart stopped as she noticed the hand on her arm, and the man that slowly came around her side and held the gun to her temple. Amanda visibly flinched when she felt the barrel, and it was all Olivia could do not to shoot LeBott straight in the forehead right then.

“She’s fine,” he said coolly, holding his head up. “But not for much longer if you don’t back away. We’re fine here.”

“You’re not,” she said calmly, stepping forward. Amanda yelped as his grip tightened on her arm and twisted, and Olivia’s jaw clenched. “You have my detective. We can’t leave you alone unless you give her up. That’s the fact, Mr. LeBott.”

“Is it?”

“Yes,” Olivia said, putting the megaphone to her side. She could talk to him now without it, she was close enough. “Let her go, and we can keep talking about what’s going to happen here. Do you hear me?”

She thought for a moment he would do as he was asked, let Amanda walk to her and go back inside the house. He considered it for a moment before she watched them both rush inside the house, and she lost her. She lost her.

“Fuck!” she whispered, running back to the ESU vehicles. As the captain approached her, she tried to keep her composure.

“There’s a blind spot in the northeast corner of the house, Lieutenant. I need eyes in there.”

“No. No no no no,” Olivia whispered. “That’ll destroy any chance we have of keeping the peace. It’ll destroy the trust we built, I cannot let that happen.”

“You don’t have to. I outrank you,” he said simply, moving past her and leaving her staring through her detectives’ faces as he barked orders to his team. She fought the tears that threatened to spill as she whipped around to watch the team setting up a ladder on the house.

It was all too soon that she heard the claps of multiple gunshots ringing through the glass and hitting the officers. She pulled her gun from her holster and heard the distant hum of orders being yelled and guns firing. She did as she was trained; she found the source, she shot at the windows, hoping to hit LeBott or any of the others and disarm them so they could get in that house. All she could think of was Amanda, and she had to get her the hell out of that house. Once the gunfire cleared, she turned to Carisi and Fin. “Move in!”

Walking into that house was a damn nightmare. One of the ESU techs had thrown a smoke bomb, and some of the people had crawled out of the windows. There was lingering smoke and blood on the walls, dead bodies littering the floor as she crawled through the damage. Amanda. Where is she? Where the fuck is she?!

What she stumbled upon next she didn’t think she could have prepared herself for. Her whole body went numb, her voice stopped working. She couldn’t move except to drop to her knees next to the body of her detective, who she found was barely breathing with a gunshot wound to the chest. Her hair was still tangled, blood still running down her forehead, and her features were clenched in agony. Olivia swore she could feel something stabbing her in the gut.

“Amanda,” she breathed, pushing the younger woman’s jacket out of the way and pressing down hard on the wound. She nearly sobbed out loud when she felt how much blood was gushing out of her. “Amanda, hold on. Amanda I’m so sorry, hold on, Amanda – “

“Liv,” Amanda breathed, her eyes full of pain and the corners of her mouth twitching. She could barely speak, Olivia realized. “Liv, I can’t…”

“Shh, hush, don’t talk. You’re gonna be okay, do you hear me? Call a bus!”

“…’livia,” Amanda managed, letting out a groan of pain as she pressed harder on the wound. “I’m sorry.”

Olivia nearly choked at that, and tears started falling down her cheeks. She’s apologizing. For something that’s my fault. “No, Amanda. This is my fault, I should have held Esther…hold on, ‘Manda.”

They waited for a few minutes while the ambulance came, but it felt like years. Amanda’s choked groans of pain had Olivia crying visibly, and she held eye contact with her for as long as she could to try to keep her awake. The only thing Amanda would do was apologize, and Olivia couldn’t breathe, she couldn’t think, she couldn’t talk.

She could hear the sirens in the background when she heard Amanda start to choke, and her breathing becoming irregular. Her eyes were wide open in fear, and Olivia’s heart dropped to her stomach.

“No, no no, hold on for me Amanda, c’mon Rollins…”

She felt a hand wrap around hers at her side, and she squeezed it tightly, tears falling faster as she watched Amanda’s eyes closing. “Amanda no.”

“I’m sorry, Liv,” she sobbed, the tears staining her shirt. “I can’t, I’m s…sorry…”

“Yes you fucking can,” Olivia breathed, her mind swirling out of control. “Don’t you dare close your eyes, don’t you dare.”

She didn’t close her eyes, though. Instead, Olivia watched as her features glazed over, saw her eyes go blank, felt her hand go limp in hers. She let out a quiet sob, gripping on to her for dear life. She didn’t register it, tried to do CPR, anything to get her back, anything. She screamed her name, shook her once, and before she even knew what was happening, her detectives were prying her off her body. They sat her against the counter and talked to her calmly as she watched the EMTs take her away from her, and she just stared through them, stared through the wall, heard white noise drowning out everything else, and let tears fall silently while a piece of Olivia died with her detective.