It had been a long fucking day.
A really long fucking day, Carisi commiserated when he checked the little clock on the wall opposite his desk. Nine thirty. He’d been in working on a case since five that morning.
When they picked up a dirty, emancipated, starved six year old a week ago, the squad had no idea what they were in for. It wasn’t just one girl this had happened to, it happened to dozens. Dozens of little, innocent, girls. They had spent six days tracking down the guy who was kidnapping and keeping the girls, and when they finally figured out where he was…
Carisi was never going to get those images from his head. Never.
Six girls, ranging from four-eight, were locked in tiny cages in a basement. They found the remains of at least ten others, going back a decade. Seventeen girls, who had never been presumed missing, who no one had missed. Seventeen girls, at least, who they NYPD only managed to find because the bastard who had taken them had gotten careless. Carisi hoped he would rot in hell for all eternity.
It was the faces of the girls from the case files that haunted him, making it hard to focus on finishing his paperwork. That’s why he was alone in the precinct, still trudging through work while the rest of the squad couldn’t have worked faster to get home. Home. God, the thought of going to home to his apartment sounded amazing. Carisi just wanted to curl up in bed with Barba and make the faces disappear for awhile. Barba always helped.
While no one knew it, Rafael and Sonny have been together for over a year and a half, living together for six months. The squad had no idea, not even Olivia, Rafael’s best friend. Neither did their families, though Sonny knew Mrs. Barba was getting quite curious as to why she hadn’t been invited over to dinner with her son in quite a few months.
With a sigh, Sonny signed the last paper and dropped the large pile on the Lieutenant's desk before grabbing his coat. Checking the time, he realized that he’ll likely be home nearly an hour before he expected and told Rafael.
Fifteen minutes in a death-defying taxi later, Sonny was reaching to open his apartment door when he heard it.
Music. Piano music, to be more specifically. With a grin, he shuffled for his keys. Rafael loved listening to his records, he must be in a better mood than Sonny was. It was when his key neatly slid into the slot that he heard singing, but it wasn’t coming from the record. It was coming from someone inside the apartment, and whoever was singing had a damn good voice.
“Well I've heard there was a secret chord
That David played and it pleased the Lord
But you don't really care for music, do you?
Well it goes like this:
The fourth, the fifth, the minor fall and the major lift
The baffled king composing Hallelujah”
Quietly now, he slowly twisted the knob and stepped inside the fresh hold. As Sonny hung his coat and dropped his keys and wallet, the rich scent of sausage and chicken grilling on the stovetop reached his noise and the voice, which had previously, been singing quietly, rose with the music.
“But baby I've been here before
I've seen this room and I've walked this floor
You know, I used to live alone before I knew ya
And I've seen your flag on the marble arch
And love is not a victory march
It's a cold and it's a broken Hallelujah”
Holy shit. Holy shit. Rafael could sing. Not like Sonny could sing after years of church, no his boyfriend was singing like he was made to, like he was some broadway star.
With silent steps learned after years of being a cop, he snuck around to peer into the kitchen from the living room. Luckily, Rafael’s back was to him, so Sonny got the chance to watch his boyfriend of a year and half sing. Rafael never even sang along to music in the car, just scowled when Sonny sang along too loudly to some pop song or smiled fondly when he tried to, badly, serenade the lawyer with Elvis. Rafael Barba never sang, ever. But even calling this singing seemed like a crime. This was the most beautiful thing the detective had ever heard in his life. Fuck.
“Well there was a time when you let me know
What's really going on below
But now you never show that to me do ya
But remember when I moved in you
And the holy dove was moving too
And every breath we drew was Hallelujah
Fuck. He could never imagined that the other man’s voice could go so deep, and now his body was reacting to the gorgeous, amazing, brilliant sounds coming out of his boyfriend’s mouth. Rafael was putting himself totally into the song, his body bending and his arms raised as he sang aloud in the empty kitchen.
Fuck. He was still so constantly amazed by his boyfriend. Part of Sonny realized that he was grinning like a loon and that if Rafael turned around, he would be caught. But he didn’t move. He was captivated, stuck where he was, eyes glued to his boyfriend’s back. The lawyer had abandoned his jacket but still wore his, though unbuttoned, dark blue vest and gray dress shirt. His tie was undone, hanging loosely around his neck, and he only wore socks on his feet. Fuck, he was gorgeous, Sonny thought again as Rafael bent over, the words being forced out of him, his voice strong and deep and oh so Cuban.
“Maybe there's a God above
But all I've ever learned from love
Was how to shoot somebody who outdrew ya
And it's not a cry that you hear at night
It's not somebody who's seen the light
It's a cold and it's a broken Hallelujah
Slowly, the piano music tapered off and Rafael was standing there, panting, shaking, all the energy dripping out of him. Before Sonny realized, he was moving forward steadily until he got to the other man. His boyfriend gasped loudly as Sonny grabbed his shoulders and spun him around, but any words that the lawyer tried to get out in his shock were swallowed by insistent lips. He pushed Rafael back against the kitchen the counter, one hand with a painful grip on the other man’s hair as he kept them pressed together, another on his ass. Sonny kissed him until they couldn’t breathe, passionately and hard. The heady smell of cooking food mixed with the smell of the other man’s aftershave that Sonny loved so very much and he groaned before pulling apart to press his forehead against Rafael’s.
They stood there, Sonny pressing his boyfriend into the edge of the counter, foreheads touching, panting and staring into each other’s eyes.
“How long were you there?” Rafael finally gets out, his accent coming out stronger like it always did after they kissed like that. He looks dazed and confused and Sonny smiles at him and realises the vice grip on the hair in his hand.
“I opened the door just as you started singin’,” He admitted.
Rafael tried to slip out from the counter and away from the other man. “You weren’t supposed to hear that.”
“Why?” Sonny asked as he kept his boyfriend where he wanted him. “I have never seen anything hotter in my life, Rafi, why didn’t you ever tell me that you sing like that? You sound better than half those boys on Broadway you love going to see so much.”
The older man blushed and avoided eye contact. “I have only ever sang for my mother and grandmother since I was I graduated college.”
“And why’s that, Counselor?” Sonny asked.
“I, uh, didn’t just get my law degree from Harvard. I also got one in music. I had always sang in church groups before. But the other guys didn’t like that. Called me a fag and other such disgusting names. I sang a show in a bar once, my last year of law school, and two of them had seen me, then beat me up outside after.” He shrugged, still avoiding eye contact, playing with Sonny’s long fingers. “I stopped singing then, decided to focus on law. And that was that.”
Sonny gaped at him. “Rafi, please tell me those guys didn’t pass the bar and are working some awful job now.”
“Perhaps,” Rafael responded with a smirk.
“Seriously though,” Sonny said, sliding his hand from the back of Rafael’s head to tilt the older man’s face up to look him in the eye. “I have never heard anything more amazing in my entire life.”
He tried to protest but Carisi wouldn’t let him. “When your voice went so low, when you strung it out, Christ, Rafi… I damn near had an orgasm right there listenin’ to ya. Please, if you love me at all, you’ll sing for me again. Please, Rafi,”
There was a long silence as Sonny held his breath in anticipation and Rafael stared him down. “You can never, ever, tell anyone.”
“Yes!” He leant forward and pressed a kiss to his boyfriend’s lips.
“Never, Dominick, not a soul.”
“Mmhhmm… sure sure.” The detective was too busy smiling down at the beautiful man he lived with and not for the first time, contemplated buying that ring he saw in a little store in Brooklyn a few weeks ago.