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Before I Fade To Ice

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Erin knew that when David hadn't called with an update, things had gone south, quickly. Letting out a deep sigh, she pushed the covers off her body and got out of bed, picking up her phone as she padded into the home office and turned on her laptop as she took a seat in the leather office chair. As she waited for everything to be ready, she unlocked her phone and called her lover.

"Erin, I am so sorry that I didn't call sooner, but we've been dealing with the aftermath of tonight. Maeve, Maeve Donovan is dead."

She wracked her brain to come up with a reason why that name would be important, but came up with nothing. She felt bad, but knew that she had to ask, to try and find out why this woman's death was so important to the team. "Who is this woman? I've never heard of her before tonight."

There was a long, drawn in, breath, and she bit her lip a little as she waited for David to respond. "That's right, I never told you. Maeve is Spencer's girlfriend. Somehow, her stalker found out about everything, despite how carefully they both covered their tracks. While we don't know how it happened, we do know that Spencer lost his first love. Blake will take care of him tonight, but…"

"You're going to be taking some extra time with them before you come here to me?"

"Yeah. You know me too well, bella."

"I love you too much, darling, which means I know everything about you that matters. Stay safe out there tonight. I will try to still be up when you get here."

"Sweet promises, my Erin."

They kissed into the phone before saying their goodbyes, and then she turned back to the laptop and did a cursory search for the name Maeve Donovan. There was nothing that caught her eye right off the bat, and so she went to their local news station, looking to see if there was any breaking news stories about a woman being murdered that evening. There, she did strike pay dirt, and she quickly copied down the name of the other woman who had died that evening.

It didn't take long to do an in depth search into that woman's background, and Erin shook her head a little as she started to out pieces of the puzzle together. While there wasn't a lot of concrete connections to the rest of these copycat cases, there was a thin thread that seemed to speak to her inclusion with the rest. It was clear that someone out there was watching her team very closely, and had been ever since the inclusion of Alex on the Alpha Team. And they were getting closer and closer to actually harming one of them.

"Which means this is personal to us," she murmured as she tapped her fingers on the desk. "But why did this start with Alex?"

It seemed like those words were what started to get the gears in her mind moving, and she thought back to the shared past that haunted her and Alex still. Only, it wasn't just Alex who had been burned by her decision to not support Alex's linguistic profile. John Curtis had also been part of that debacle, and he had not gone quietly, blaming her, Alex, and the entire BSU for his downfall. Feeling like she had been punched in the gut, Erin looked up at the laptop once more, her fingers furiously tapping away at the keyboard as she searched for information on what that man was up to now.

She couldn't find any trace of him through her normal search engines, beyond old articles that spoke of what had happened during the Amerithrax incident. "Penelope might be able to find out more information on him, but I don't want to drag them into this any further. I know, since he's getting closer to hurting the team, he's getting closer to his goal, seeing me brought down and humiliated. But I need the support. I want, no, I need to do this, and it has to be on my own."

Taking a deep breath, she pushed away from the desk and closed her laptop before standing and making her way back into the bedroom. Turning on her bedside lamp, she crawled back into bed, sitting up against the headboard as she picked up the book she was currently reading and opened where she had left off. It took a while to draw her mind off the revelation she had just made, but soon the story had gained her complete attention, and it was only when her bedroom door closed with a loud thud that she looked up from the pages again, a worried look immediately coming across her features as she marked her place and set the book aside, opening her arms to her beloved.

David tromped across the floor, losing his suit jacket and shoes as he went, collapsing next to her and burying his face in her chest. Erin began to drag her fingers through his hair, needing to do something for him, and then her nightgown became wet as his tears fell from his face and onto her. "We're trained to take the shot, Erin. And that woman was behaving so erratically, that we should have taken the shot. Spencer, though, he kept giving us this look, like he wanted us to pause, to wait, to try and save Maeve."

"I take it that Diane decided to go through with murder suicide, then?"

"Actually, suicide murder. She shot herself in the head, and the caliber bullet that she used was sufficiently large enough that it went all the way through her head and into Maeve's. They were both dead before we could do anything." Erin nodded as she bent down and pressed her lips to the top of his head as she grabbed hold of his shirt and tugged it out of his trousers.

"You can't sleep in your clothes, darling, let's get you out of them," she murmured, gently pushing on his shoulders until he turned over. His brown eyes were so dark with emotion that Erin felt her heart break. She had brought this sorrow into their lives with her decision all those years ago. And it would be up to her to make everything right. She owed it to Spencer, to Alex, and to David. The first tears started to roll down her cheeks as she made quick work of the buttons before undoing his belt and trousers, pushing them down his legs while he shrugged out of his shirt, tossing it onto the floor as she followed suit with the trousers and socks.

"I don't know what I would do if anything happened to you," he said lowly as their eyes met. "When I was watching the kid cradle Maeve in his arms, sorrow twisting his face, I knew that he had loved her as much as I love you. We found this love so late in life, and I know that every time I go out in the field, I could die, but I also know that I always have you to welcome me home. I love you, Erin."

More tears began to roll down her face as she nodded. "I love you, too, David." Knowing that she couldn't say another word, for fear of saying too much, she instead leaned forward and kissed him tenderly, sighing a little as his arms circled her waist and pulled her tightly to his chest. Yawning a little, she let her head come to rest on his shoulder as he pulled the covers up around them. "Forever and always, you're in my heart."