Convert This Page to Pilot DOC FormatConvert this page to Pilot DOC Format

Editor's Choice Award

Disclaimers: Xena: Warrior Princess, Gabrielle, Argo and all other characters who have appeared in the syndicated series, together with the names, titles and backstory are the sole copyright property of MCA/Universal and Renaissance Pictures. God knows, no copyright infringement was intended in the writing of this fan fiction. The story idea and the story itself are the sole property of the author. Feel free to make copies for private use and be sure to include the disclaimers and warnings. There will be NO profit of any kind as a result of this story.

SEXUAL VIOLENCE WARNING: One small part of the story deals with sexual violence and a lot of it deals with its aftermath. It was necessary to include for the purpose of the story line. If this disturbs you or you are sensitive to this type of depiction you may want to read something other than this story. I certainly would understand and by no means would be offended.

LOVE/SEX WARNING: Of course. This story depicts a loving/sexual relationship between two gorgeous, consenting adult women. If you’re under 18 years of age or if this type of story is illegal in the state or country where you live, please go away now.

FEEDBACK: I need it. This is my first story and your opinions - good and bad are welcomed. Cruelty, however, is not.

A special thanks to my partner - thank you honey - for encouraging me to write this story and for taking your pen to it. Grammar is her forte, not mine. I hope, in the end, the characters did come to life as she so gently told me had to happen.

I’m off to the Cape now myself - P-Town to be exact and look forward to hearing from all you lovely XENA/Gabrielle fans when I return.



Sam sat at the bar trembling. It was only four in the afternoon and she had already consumed more than her normal quota. The last of her tears had dried on her cheeks hours ago. Sam sat there and pondered what she would do next. Her parents had told her to get out, they had had enough and they refused to allow her to embarrass them again. How could their daughter have turned out like this? It was bad enough that she had dropped out of law school in the middle of her last semester, but she then wanted to tarnish the family’s good name with her nonsensical fears. She would have been a great addition to her father’s law firm. Such a disappointment they had told her. Her older sister Dawn called her a foolish 22-year-old. ‘To hell with them all,’ she thought sourly as she took another gulp.

After finishing her third Corona, Sam worked her way through the dark, quiet bar to find her way to the bathroom. There weren’t many customers at that hour, just a few people like herself who needed an afternoon diversion. Once in the bathroom, Sam took several minutes studying herself in the mirror. No, she certainly wasn’t the cute little girl with the round face and wide eyes that was sent off to boarding school when she was four, to Sara Lawrence at 17 and onto Yale Law School at the ripe old age of 20. Sam was too smart her parents had said, forcing her to skip a couple of grades along the way. They insisted she mingle only with the brightest and of course the wealthiest. Wouldn’t they be surprised, no appalled, to find her in the bathroom of a lesbian bar.

As she nervously worked her way back through the bar, panic engulfed her and she started to run trying to reach the nearest exit. She didn’t have a plan and had no idea what she was going to do next. In fact, Sam never had to plan anything in her entire life since her parents had always done the planning for her. Maybe she was just an immature princess riding on daddy’s coattails. As she was running a blonde curly-haired woman with dark brown eyes walked in her path and the two collided. "Ow! Watch where you’re going! You almost sent me across the bar, damn it." Sam was beside herself. "I... I’m so sorry. I don’t know what’s gotten into me," she said self-consciously as the tears started anew. As the tears flowed the curly blonde stood there, mouth wide open as she viewed what surely was the cutest woman she had ever seen.

"Hey, hey it’s okay. I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to be so quick. It’s my first night managing the bar and I’m a little nervous. Listen, my name's Eppie. And you are..." the manager looked into deep green eyes. ‘Why on my first night here did I have to run into such a piece?’ Eppie wondered.

"I’m Sam. I’m so sorry. I was just leaving so I’ll be out of your way... no more accidents."

Eppie had a major decision to make. ‘Do I run after her and beg her to stay, do I ask her for her phone number and promise to call her later, or... do I tell the bitch who owns this damn place that I’ve got better things to do and quit right now?’ Decision made, Eppie grabbed a hold of the arm of the beauty before her.

"Look, you seem like you could use some company. How about coming back a little later. Since this is my first night, I think I could use some friendly company, and you look... well ... friendly," Eppie said with a welcoming smile as she eyed the petite wonder before her.

For her part, Sam was confused. Was this woman coming onto her? True, the woman before her was nice looking and built, for lack of a better way to describe her, sturdy and compact. Eppie wasn’t much taller than she but seemed real sure of herself. "Look, I’m really not great company now. Maybe some other time. Thanks, though," Sam finally said as she looked away to find the exit..

Eppie, never one to take rejection easy, decided to press on. "Well then, that makes two us. You know, the company thing?" Eppie said after noticing Sam’s confused look. "Okay, I’ll tell you straight up. I don’t know what it was but when I looked into your eyes after you, um... I mean after we accidentally ran into each other I just knew then I had to get to know you. I know that sounds strange but..." Eppie was at a loss for words and her mouth stopped working.

"What time would you suggest I come back?" Sam asked softly as she gazed into the dark brown eyes. Eppie sighed and thanked the higher powers. Maybe her love life would finally take a turn in the right direction.


Sam found her way back to her new turbo VW Bug not exactly sure where she was going. Earlier in the day she had left the mansion from hell in the bright lime green VW, with her checkbook, $500 in cash and a suitcase packed with jeans, tank tops, sandals, Nike sneakers, and other essentials. She threw her journal and laptop in the back of the Bug, gave the mansion and everybody looking out the window the finger, mouthed f-you for all to see and peeled away down the long circular drive like hell was just a heartbeat away. Now, several hours after her dramatic departure, she needed to find a place to stay and she needed to find it quick.

Stopping at the Buy-It-Quick Drive Thru, Sam bought a local newspaper, a sub sandwich, a frozen coffee and a box of tissues. Surely for all her crying she would need the tissues. Having no place else to go, she went to the park to eat her dinner and to look through the classifieds to find a place to live. She was sure her father would cut off her allowance so she needed to find a place that she could afford. But what could she afford? She had no job... in fact she had never held a job in her life! It was a given that as soon as she finished law school she would work for her father. Scanning the classifieds she circled a few rooms for rent that she thought she might be able to afford. Leaning over she opened the glove box with a shaky hand to retrieve the cell phone. As she was rummaging through the box she felt the anger rising and the heat moving up her neck. "Fucking whore! Dawn you bitch, you never returned my phone. Shit, shit, shit!"

Having no other options, Sam left the park and walked over to the gas station to use the public phone that was just outside of the restrooms. She would call a few places and freshen up afterwards.

She was too late for the first room she called. The landlady had told her that she had rented the room just an hour earlier. It seemed as though this woman just wanted to keep gabbing so Sam politely told her that she really had to end the conversation and hung up the phone. ‘God, I feel sorry for the person who moves into that house,’ she thought. There was finally some hope after her fourth call to a place that was described as spacious with lots of windows and a private bath. She took down the directions and told the landlady that she would be there in about 30 minutes.

Sam pulled up to the large, purple painted Victorian house sitting atop the hill at the end of the street just shortly after 8pm. Standing on the walkway, she looked up at the huge house. Surely one could see for miles around from the top floor. ‘Oh God is that high,’ she thought with some trepidation as she followed the path leading to the front door. Waiting to greet her was a medium built woman, just slightly taller than Sam herself, dressed in black jeans, a black blouse and black open-toed shoes. "Hello, you must be Samantha Daly," the woman said in a rather raspy voice. "Yes, hmm, please call me Sam. And you are Ms. Baltier?" Sam inquired. "Yes, please come in dear," Ms. Baltier responded with a crooked smile.

As the two women took the stairs up Sam couldn’t help but feel creepy. There was something about this woman that was unnerving. Perhaps it was that she was dressed all in black, had black eyes and black hair and even had black nail polish on her finger and toenails. Her mouth also was outlined in black lipstick.

Ms. Baltier led them up to the third floor and opened a door. Moving aside so Sam could enter, the dark woman was struck by the soft looking skin and youthful appearance of her, hopefully, soon to be boarder. She could almost taste her. Clearing her throat the woman in black told Sam to look around, not that there was much to look at. It was a room Sam thought, in a big old house, with a strange lady decorated from head to toe in black. There was a twin size bed against the wall facing the large window, and a chest of drawers in one corner and what looked like a decent size closet in the other corner. The window and bed coverings were in purple and black. A bit on the dreary side, but it would have to do. It was probably colder than hell in the wintertime but hopefully she wouldn’t be here then. Who was she kidding? Of course she would be here. Certainly her parents wouldn’t take her back. Sam knew there was no going back. No matter how freaky this lady was, the room was nice and spacious and the view was spectacular.

Sam joined Ms. Baltier back down in the main living room. Upon telling her she would take the room the landlady’s face lit up. "I’m sure you’ll love it here. Please try to make yourself at home," the woman said graciously as she took her long arm and made a sweeping motion with it of the room. "The kitchen is through the doors at the end of the hall. Feel free to use it as you wish" the boarding house owner said as she leaned forward and held her hand out to affirm their deal.

Sam pulled 75 dollars from her bag and handed it to Ms. Baltier for the week’s rent. Their fingers touched during the exchange and a shiver ran up and down the dark woman’s back.

Having taken care of business with Ms. Baltier, Sam moved what few things she had up to her room. After unpacking her suitcase she went to the large bay window facing out over the town and was filled with a sense of awe. ‘How in the world did I end up here?’ She hadn’t noticed her still trembling hands.


Eppie moved about the bar as if she had worked there forever. The music was pulsating as the club goers danced to the rhythmic beat. It was a large bar that was frequented only by women. Its reputation was that it was probably the best pick-up joint in town. Women who came to the bar alone, rarely left that way. You could almost smell the sweat and wetness as you tried to make your way across the dance floor.

‘God I can’t wait for this night to be over.’ Eppie thought irritably as the bar bitch glided across the dance floor towards her. "Eppie sweetheart. Do be a dear and get me a Sambucca," Carol purred as she tapped her nails on the top of the neatly polished bar. As the bar manager bent to retrieve the Sambucca Carol couldn’t resist staring at the full mounds tucked securely in tight fitting blue jeans. ‘Hmm, when I get my hands on her,’ Carol contemplated.

Just as Eppie was putting the shot down she looked up and saw the most adorable eyes staring at her. "Sam! I’m so glad you were able to come back. The bar closes in an hour. Maybe we could go get some coffee then?" the bar manager said, excited that the beautiful strawberry blonde had returned.

"That would be nice. I’ll just wait at the end of the bar until your shift ends," Sam replied with a small smile and a soft voice as she gradually eased over to the stool at the end of the long bar.

‘She is not only cute, but sweet as well,’ thought Eppie dryly.

"Look, you’re supposed to be working here," Carol snapped at Eppie. "I have rules! No manager is to be hitting on the customers, do you understand that?"

"I wasn’t hitting on her Carol. I met her earlier today and she was really upset. I’m just trying to help her," Eppie lied. She really wanted to get to know Sam, it had been a long time since she was involved with anyone and she ached for the touch of another woman. ‘It has been too long,’ she thought.

"Well if I see you’re distracted, or if I get any complaints from the customers I won’t even think twice about throwing you out of here," Carol threatened.

"Don’t worry Carol," Eppie said shortly as she regarded the tall, thin blonde bar owner bitch who had sidled her way too close to Eppie’s breasts.

"I never worry, my dear Eppie," Carol stated coolly as she brushed her hand lightly across the front of Eppie’s body and moved with confidence towards the end of the bar where Sam was sitting.

"Well hello sweet thing. Is this your first time here?" Carol asked easily. Sam turned in the direction of the high pitched voice. "I’m sorry, you asked me something?" she said uncertainly.

"I don’t think I’ve seen you here before. Are you new in town?" Carol asked sweetly. She noticed the vibrant green orbs of the unbelievably cute young woman. She also noticed the tight fitting tanktop and the nicely defined round breasts of the strawberry blonde.

"Um, yes. I am new in town," Sam stated nervously. She thought this woman seemed really pushy.

"Eppie! Get my young friend here something to drink." Looking at Sam, she asked "how about a glass of wine?"

"No thank you. I’m just waiting for my friend." Sam hoped that Carol would leave her alone. She didn’t like how the tall woman had draped her arm around her shoulder and how her fingers were playing along the edge of her top.

Sensing Sam’s nervousness, Carol decided to press her advantage and made a bold move. She gripped Sam’s right breast and squeezed. "Oh, come now. Certainly you can have a drink with me while you wait for your friend." Carol squeezed harder then let her hand drop to the side of Sam’s breast and started brushing her palm alongside it. Sam froze in her seat and felt fear taking over. She prayed she wouldn’t make a scene on her new friend’s first night on the job.

"Please, if you don’t mind I’m really not interested." Sam practically begged, asking to be left alone.

"You have no idea what you’re missing little girl." Carol said seething, before rising from the barstool and stomping away.

"I’m sorry about that," Eppie said apologetically to Sam as Carol left the bar and proceeded to her office. "She’s an asshole. She thinks because she owns the place, that she also owns all the women that come in as well."

"It’s not your fault Eppie. I survived and I think she got the message that I wasn’t interested." Sam said not sounding too sure of herself.

Just then, the lights flashed on and off and then stayed on. The music died and the customers started working their way out of the bar.

"I’ll be ready to go in about ten minutes. Wait for me here, okay?" Eppie instructed as she walked towards Carol’s office with the night's receipts.

"I don’t like your little friend," the bar owner blurted to Eppie as she entered the office.

"Well, we’re leaving now," Eppie replied deciding to ignore Carol’s remark.

"She’s rude! She practically ignored me when I was trying to be nice to her," Carol fumed, annoyed that she was rejected in the presence of her patrons.

"I’m sorry you feel that way Carol. I’m sure she’s just a little nervous, you know from being in a new place and not knowing anyone."

"Perhaps, but if she can’t be social I don’t want her waiting for you here."

"Good night Carol. I’ll see you tomorrow," Eppie said quickly and was on her way. As she closed the office door, she counted to 10 and let out a long breath. ‘What a day. I start a new job working for a royal bitch and meet the prettiest girl around all in one day. Just my luck. Can’t have two goods in a day. Oh well.’


As they left the bar and were walking down the street Eppie asked Sam if she wanted to do anything in particular.

Chuckling, Sam asked if there was anything to do in the town at 2:30 in the morning.

"Not really. How about we walk down by the docks? There’s a nice little coffeehouse down there," the curly-haired woman suggested.

"Sounds wonderful," Sam replied. Feeling shy, Sam couldn’t really think of anything to say so she remained silent.

"I assume your new in town," Eppie said, the statement sounding like a question.

"Um, yeah. I just arrived today."

"So what brings you to our fine town? A new job?"

Sam had to think for a minute. She wasn’t prepared to share what was going on in her life, especially with someone who really was a stranger. "I’m on vacation," she said hesitantly.

Noticing the hesitation Eppie responded "I see. So which of our illustrious hotels are you staying at?"

‘Oh God, why am I so bad at this?’ Sam wondered. "Oh, I’ve rented a place about a few blocks from the center of town. I’m thinking about relocating to the area."

"So where is home?" Eppie asked.

"New York," Sam responded in a soft voice.

"So why Massachusetts then. To relocate that is?"

"I like New England and thought there might be some opportunities for me here," the strawberry blonde answered.

"What kind of work do you do?"

Sam got real quiet. She was having a hard time keeping up with all the questions and the trembling was getting worse. All she knew was that she got in her car and ended up here. She didn’t know why. She had never been to Cape Cod before but she had heard a lot about it from the few acquaintances she had made throughout her years at Sarah Lawrence.

Noticing the young woman’s hesitation, Eppie decided to change the subject. Something was wrong with her new friend and it was obvious she was holding back talking about herself. ‘That’s okay,' Eppie thought. 'I’ve been in that place a few times. So long as she’s not a mass murderer, I think I’ll be okay’.

"The coffeehouse is just down this street here," the bar manager noted as she took hold of the strawberry blonde's arm and guided her along the street. She could feel the young woman shaking.

"Eppie, I’m sorry. I didn’t realize how tired I am. Would you mind if I took a raincheck on the coffee?" Sam asked in a nervous tone.

Feeling a little stunned by the change in events, but not wanting to appear so, Eppie got control of her feelings and in a caring voice asked, "is there something wrong? Anything I can help you with?" Eppie had stopped walking and was facing Sam.

"Like I said I’m just tired. It was a long drive and then I had to find a place to stay. You’ve been helpful already Eppie, making me feel welcomed and all." Sam was unsure as to how to get out of this date. She had been grappling with her sexuality for awhile now and had just come to terms with it. 'The incident', she was sure, had something to do with her finally admitting who she was.

Eppie stared into Sam’s eyes for what seemed like a long time and her heart broke at what she saw there. This was a woman in a lot of pain and she looked so frightened. "Sam, I know we’ve just met, but I’m worried about you. Please tell me what’s going on."

Sam could no longer look at Eppie so instead she looked at the ground. She could feel the tears beginning to build. With a lump in her throat, she tried to assure her companion that it was her long day catching up with her.

"Eppie, I’m really sorry I disappointed you." She said quietly, still staring at the ground.

Eppie took Sam’s hand and moved closer to her hoping to comfort her. "I don’t know what’s going on and you haven’t known me long enough to trust me. But I am a really good listener."

Still not getting a response, Eppie used her other hand and with little force gently pushed upward on Sam’s quivering chin until she could look into her eyes. She saw the tears sitting there just waiting to make an exit. The trembling in the hand she still held did not escape her attention. Eppie leaned over and placed a soft kiss on Sam’s cheek. "Let me walk you back to your car. I’ll give you my phone number. Promise me you’ll call?" the bar manager asked with compassion in her voice.

Sam nodded affirmatively and then felt a strong arm cross over her shoulders. Eppie guided them back to the bar where Sam’s car was parked. They didn’t say a word the entire walk back. At Sam’s car, Eppie leaned over and placed a feather light kiss on Sam’s full mouth. "Now remember to call, okay?"

"I will. And Eppie... thanks. For caring." With that she got into the VW and drove off towards the outskirts of the town.

‘I wish I knew what was bothering her. I like her, a lot. Eppie girl, what are you getting yourself into?’


By the time Sam got back to her room in the big purple Victorian it was almost 4am. She couldn’t remember the last time she was out that late. Too bad she didn’t have much to brag about being out so late. If anything she had made a fool of herself. Here Eppie was trying to be kind and she didn’t even know how to respond. 'Eppie's kiss was very gentle,' she thought as she ran her fingers along her lips. It was the first time she had been kissed by a woman.

The trembling, still unnoticed, was getting worse.

After changing into a T-shirt Sam moved over to the big bay window. Looking out on this town at night she realized that she was really alone. She was afraid of being alone, of failing, afraid of just about everything. She climbed into the bed and pulled the covers up to her chin. Before she knew it she was crying uncontrollably. Finding it hard to catch her breath, Sam sat up. She pulled her knees up tucking them under her chin and with her arms wrapped tightly around her legs, all she could do was to rock back and forth. She was cold, so cold...



"Where in the world is she?" Ms. Baltier growled out loud to herself as she looked at the large grandfather clock in the corner of her cluttered living room. It was now 1pm and she had not seen her new boarder since she left the evening before. The VW was parked outside so she was sure that Sam had found her way home. She was surprised that she had not heard her come in. ‘She better not have someone up there with her. I didn’t tell her about that rule,' she thought dourly to herself.

Finally, after waiting another two hours, Ms. Baltier quietly went up to the small room on the third floor. Leaning her head up against the bedroom door she waited hoping she would hear the girl. What she heard startled her. It sounded like a child whimpering. She knocked on the door but got no response. 'She didn’t tell me she had a kid,' Ms. Baltier thought angrily. She knocked louder. Still no response. Finally, she decided to open the door. Using the master key, she barged into the room. Her eyes went wide when she saw Sam sitting on the bed rocking back and forth. She was staring at nothing. Nothing at all.

"Samantha? Samantha sweetie?" Ms. Baltier said in her raspy voice. Getting no response she leaned over to nudge Sam’s shoulder. Just as she laid her hand on the shoulder, Sam’s eyes widened in horror and she jumped off the bed.

Sam ran to the corner and huddled there. "Leave me alone!" she screamed. "Don’t touch me!" she added and started to make movements with her hands as if swatting away a band of mosquitoes. Then she started clawing at herself.

"What are you high or something? I do not allow drugs in my house!" Ms. Baltier bellowed. "I’m calling the cops. You are dirt! A degenerate! I want you out of my house now!" And with that the dark lady stormed from the room.

Ten minutes later the police arrived. Two officers entered the room. One of the officers, Luke Polis, tall, blue eyed with wavy sandy blonde hair approached Sam who was still huddled in the corner. The other officer, Mike Sullivan, began searching through Sam’s belongings hoping he would find the drugs he was sure were there.

As Officer Polis got closer to Sam she began scratching furiously at her arms. He moved slowly hoping he would be able to get close enough to her to grab her hands to keep her from hurting herself. In a soothing voice he asked her name. Sam did not respond. Instead she started banging her head on the wall. Fearing she was going to hurt herself, the two officers moved in on her, each grabbing an arm. Sam let out a long loud shriek that could be heard down the block. Ms. Baltier was standing just outside the door and in a loud voice told the officers to get the girl out before she scared away all her boarders. She couldn’t afford to lose the few people who were renting rooms.

"Fucking bitch!" Sullivan said as he tried to pull Sam’s arm behind her back. "She’s fucking biting my arm, man." Polis quickly grabbed her other hand and put the handcuffs on her. Sam was squirming uncontrollably and mumbling incoherently.

"Hey listen Sullivan, I don’t think she’s on drugs. There’s something else going on with her. I think we need to get her to the hospital," the blue eyed officer said worriedly.

"You must be crazy! She’s hallucinating or something." Sullivan protested.

"I know asshole! But there’s no sign of drugs here, you looked yourself. Come on, we need to get her to the hospital," the tall officer said sounding as if Sam’s life were in his hands.

That being said, the two officers lifted Sam and using every bit of their strength to keep her from squirming out of their grasp, took her out to their squad car. Polis was sure she would have bruises later from resisting them. He was also sure she’d have a black eye after seeing Sullivan elbow her there when she bit him.

On the way out Polis grabbed the strawberry blonde's bag and told Ms. Baltier that somebody would follow-up later with her to get her statement.


By the time they reached the hospital Sam appeared catatonic. Except for her trembling she made no other movements. Officer Polis gently pulled her from the back of the car and led her into the emergency room. Seeing that she had calmed down considerably, he unlocked the handcuffs and explained the situation to the nurse. The nurse, a large Hispanic woman spoke soothingly to Sam.

"What’s your name honey?" the nurse inquired.

There was no response so the nurse tried again. "Honey, we want to help you. Can you tell me your name?"

For the first time, Sam made eye contact. Not with the nurse though, but rather she looked straight into Officer Polis’ blue eyes. She opened her mouth to speak but nothing came out.

Officer Polis explained Sam’s condition to the nurse. ‘I don’t know why, but I feel for this girl,’ Polis was thinking, worried for the young woman.

The nurse told him they would move Sam to the psychiatric unit for observation. She asked if they had made any attempt to reach her family and the officer responded that his patrol partner was trying to get more information on her. He really didn’t know the first thing about her.

Polis informed the nurse that as soon as they had anything to report they would notify the hospital. He took one last look at Sam before leaving the hospital. She was beautiful. What could have possibly happened to her to cause this?


Back at the station Polis learned that the young woman he had picked up was a Samantha Daly from New York. She came from a prestigious family, her father being a partner in a large well established law firm in the city. Her mother was actively involved in the Republican party, was a community leader, and quite vocal when it came to very conservative issues. In fact, her mother was an active supporter of the religious right.

Upon calling the Daly residence he was stunned by the reaction of her mother "I have no daughter by the name of Sam," Mrs. Daly promptly announced.

"Ma'am, your daughter is ill and the hospital needs authorization to treat her," he politely said.

"Perhaps you didn’t hear me Officer Polis. But my husband and I no longer have a daughter by the name of Sam," she restated in an angry and uncaring tone.

"Maybe you would want to discuss this with your husband Mrs. Daly. You see Samantha is... I cannot fucking believe this. I CANNOT BELIEVE THIS!" Polis snapped as he slammed the phone down. "She hung up on me! What kind of mother would reject her own kid?"

Just as he hung up the phone it rang again and an indignant Ms. Baltier was on the line. "When are you going to get her stuff out of here. I’ve got to get that room rented. I’m losing money! And I want that God awful lime green thing parked in front of the house out of my sight."

Polis explained that he would have somebody come by later to gather Sam’s belongings and would also arrange to have her car impounded until they were able to figure things out. He promised it would be done today. ‘What a heart she has,’ he thought disgustedly.

Polis was at a loss. So he did what he almost always did when he didn’t have an answer. He picked up the phone and called the State Police crime lab. "Hey sis, how are you? Haven’t seen you around lately."

"What do you want Luke?" the deep sultry voice on the other end asked.

"I thought I’d ask my favorite sister out to dinner. Is there something wrong with that?" the officer asked, clearly sounding as though he needed a favor.

"What do you want Luke?" the voice asked, this time with a little playfulness in her tone.

"Look sis, I need to talk with you. Can’t you spare a few minutes for your baby brother?"

"I’m supposed to meet Sarah for dinner. Can’t it wait?" the sultry voice sounded hurried.

"Chris, I picked somebody up earlier today. I thought you might be able to help her."

"I’m a forensic psychologist, Luke. I don’t get involved in relationships, unless of course, they lead to murder." she said almost teasingly.

Luke took a moment to get his thoughts in order. ‘How come she never takes me seriously?’ he pondered.

"It’s nothing like that. This is strictly work related."

"Yeah, just like the last time."

"Alright Chris, you’re right. I’m a total screw up. But I have to do something for this girl and you’re the only one I could think of who might be able to help."

Hearing the desperation in his voice, Chris told him to meet her outside in the parking lot in ten minutes. If he was late, he would have to wait for the following day.


Like always Luke was late. Just as Chris was about to leave, she heard him hollering to her from across the lot.

Luke saw his tall, ebony-haired sister as soon as he walked out of the station and knew she would comment on his tardiness.

"I told you to meet me in ten minutes! It is now twenty." Chris said in a stern voice.

"I know, I know. I was just trying to get some information for you," he gasped trying to catch his breath after sprinting across the parking lot to meet his sister.

"Look Luke, I’ve promised Sarah I would meet her at the restaurant. We’re trying real hard to work things out. I can’t have her thinking that I don’t take this commitment thing seriously," Chris said while glancing at her watch.

Ignoring his sister’s statement, Luke began to tell his sister about Sam.

"So, what do you want me to do?" She asked not really understanding where her brother was going with this and annoyed that he was taking up her time.

"I was hoping you would go and see her. There’s something about her Chris. I don’t know what it is. But if you look deep in her eyes, you can see a tender caring person whose in a lot of pain," he insisted. "And you’re the best psychologist I know. So if anybody could reach her, I know it would be you."

"Luke, you’re missing something real important here. I work with criminals, not little rich girls."

By now Luke was feeling desperate. "Chris, please. Just go and see her. I promise I will never ask you to do me a favor again."

Chris could not remember ever seeing her younger brother like this. She couldn’t help but wonder if there wasn’t something he was holding back from her.

"Her name is Samantha Daly. She’s 22 years old and I doubt she’s rich now because according to her mother, Samantha is no longer her daughter." Luke explained trying his best to convince his sister..

Chris looked her brother squarely in the eyes. "This had better be worth it. If it turns out you’re sending me into a psych ward to check this babe out for you as a possible future prospect you better start running and running fast," she threatened, knowing her brother would do almost anything to gain the attention of a good looking woman.

Feeling a major sense of relief, Luke wrapped his arms around his sister and squeezed hard. He could feel her muscles flex in response. ‘Damn, when did she develop these,’ he wondered.

"I’ll try to stop by tomorrow to see her," Chris said and turned to climb into her big burgundy Ford Expedition XLT.

"Um, I know you’re doing me this favor, and I really am grateful and all..." Luke started.

Chris looked at him with one eyebrow lifted and drawled out a "yesss?"

"I was hoping you could stop by the hospital tonight," he finished quickly.

"Aw come on Luke. I can’t, damn it! How many times do I have to tell you that I’m meeting Sarah? We’ve got the whole evening planned. I can’t cancel out on her now."

"I’m not asking you to spend a lot of time there tonight. Just drop in and see her, that’s all." Luke pleaded.

As they stood there in the parking lot Chris’ cell phone rang. "Oh hello babe. I was just leaving now," she said staring at her brother.

After a few silent moments, Chris hung up the phone. "You’re lucky. Sarah has a problem at work and is running late. I’ll go to the hospital now and call you later."

"Great! I knew you’d come through for me," Luke said finally able to relax.

As she was pulling away, Chris stopped briefly and called Luke over to driver's side window. "Just remember what I told you baby brother, because I wasn’t joking."


Chris knew everybody who worked on the psych ward at the hospital because her job required that she go the ward to interview, evaluate, and assess people arrested for various crimes. When she got off the elevator she was greeted by the head of the psych department, Dr. Joy Slavin. Dr. Slavin had been Chris’ mentor since she had started her undergraduate studies. At one low point in the tall woman’s life, the psychiatrist had even taken Chris into her own home.

"How the hell are you, Polis? I haven’t seen your sorry ass around here in awhile."

"Seems like all the criminals have been sane lately, Joy." Chris was in a hurry and didn’t have time for socializing. "But I understand a young woman was brought in late this afternoon. A Samantha Daly?"

"She wanted for something?" Dr. Slavin asked somewhat perplexed.

"No. My brother picked her up earlier today and brought her to the ER. He seemed to be concerned about her so I thought I’d stop in. I guess you could say this is official state police business? Especially since one of Massachusetts finest asked for my help?" Chris was hoping her friend wouldn’t mention this visit to the hospital administration who demanded to be informed whenever the police brought someone in for observation.

Dr. Slavin smiled broadly. "I doubt this one will be of much interest to you Chris. She’s not the crazy criminal you seem to thrive on. She’s in room 702, next to the nurses' station."

"Thanks Joy. I won’t be long. And by the way, I owe you one." Chris said gratefully before heading to Samantha Daly’s room. ‘Let’s see what my brother’s in an dither over,’ she thought as she made her way to the room and pushed on the door.


Christina Polis was not prepared for the sight that she beheld when she entered the room. Lying on the bed with her hands bandaged and restrained to the sides of the hospital bed was the most beautiful, adorable and sweetest looking woman she had ever seen. She didn’t think that she had ever seen that shade of strawberry blonde hair in her life. Her heart went into her throat when she saw the pain etched on the young woman’s face.

‘Ah Luke. What the hell are you doing to me man,’ she thought as she felt her own heart warming at the sight of Sam lying there.

As she was working her way to the bed Sam opened her eyes. Chris stopped dead in her tracks. She was struck by the pleading green eyes that looked in her direction. ‘You’re going to pay big time for this brother,’ she thought irritably.

"Hello Samantha. I’m Dr. Christina Polis from the State Police."

Chris moved to the side of the bed and noticed that Sam’s arms and face had several deep scratches and there was a large bump on the left side of her head that was showing a hint of bruising. She also had a black eye forming. Chris would be sure to ask her brother about the injuries later.

After making a quick assessment of Sam’s physical condition, Chris’ dark blue eyes traveled back to the green orbs and lingered there.

‘God I don’t know what to do,’ Chris thought feeling a bit panicky, as she looked down at the beautiful face. At just that moment a single tear fell from Sam’s right eye and Chris’ heart suddenly felt heavy.

"Um listen, I’d like to try and help you. Can you tell me what’s going on?" What a stupid question that was Chris thought. ‘Here you are, the one with the PhD and you don’t know what to do.’

At just that moment Joy Slavin walked in.

"Joy, has she said anything?" Chris inquired in a soft voice.

"Not a word. I haven’t a clue what’s going on in her head," The psychiatrist replied as she pulled the taller woman away from the bed so they could talk without the new patient hearing. "I was going to give her something to help her rest and see what happens tomorrow. We’re doing some lab work on her and should have the results in the morning. I’ve also ordered a brain scan"

"The um... restraints? You think you could take them off? She doesn’t look as though she’s dangerous and she keeps looking at them" Chris commented as she glanced over at the smaller woman.

Joy looked at Chris as though she had lost her mind. "What’s going on Chris? I’m sure your brother told you what she was like when she was brought in. Her trembling was uncontrollable and from what the doctor in the ER reported most of the injuries she has are self-inflicted. The possibility is too great that she’ll cause more damage to herself. Once we’re able to communicate with her we’ll make a decision regarding the restraints. But, you know that already, right? And you also know procedure with these kinds of cases."

"You’re right Joy. I’m sorry. It’s been a long day. Listen, I understand her parents don’t want anything to do with her. Did the hospital run a check on her insurance?" the dark-haired woman inquired.

"Yeah, great parents. Her insurance was cancelled about an hour after she was brought in. I have two days to figure out what to do with her."

"Well before you do anything please let me know what the options are okay? I’d like to help her if I can," Chris said as she looked into the green eyes again. ‘What the fuck is going on here?’ she said silently to herself, feeling captured by the eyes of the small woman.

"You might be interested in the business card we found in her bag," Joy said as she pulled the card from her pocket.

Handing it to Chris, Joy watched as Chris’ eyebrow shot high up and disappeared under her dark bangs. "She had this in her bag? You’re kidding right?"

"Not at all. There’s somebody’s name written on the back along with another phone number. A home number I’m guessing. The card looks new so I’m assuming it’s from a recent... acquaintance?" Joy offered.

"I’ll check it out. Maybe this person can tell us something about her." Chris had not taken her eyes away from Sam’s except to look at the card. "Joy, I really want to thank you for helping her. I’ll let you know if I find out anything that would be useful in treating her."

"Listen Chris, don’t go getting yourself too attached here. It’s bad enough I have to treat her. Treating you, I believe old friend, would be a challenge I do not want to entertain" Joy teased trying to lighten the mood a bit.

"I won’t. I’m just going to spend a few more minutes here then head out. I’m already late meeting Sarah for dinner." The tall woman said as she looked at her watch.

"So how are you two?" Joy asked gently, sensing something not quite right.

"We’ve been better. We’re trying to work through some issues. She wants to buy a house. It’s real important to her," Chris said not sounding even the least bit interested.

"And you of course, aren’t the settling down type?" prodded Joy, detecting the distracted tone in her friend’s voice.

Chris laughed then added "not by a long shot." Looking back down at Sam, she felt as though she was being studied by inquisitive sad green eyes. Unconsciously shook her shoulders as if experiencing a sudden chill.

"I’m sure you’ll figure things out," Joy said encouragingly before leaving the room.


"Well now," Chris said warmly. "What do you propose we do? Hmm."

There was no reaction from Sam at all. She just continued to stare into the deep blue eyes of the tall forensic psychologist whose long dark hair was pushed behind her broad shoulders.

"I need to tell you that all my work is with criminals and well, you don’t look like one to me. So quite honestly, I haven’t a clue as to what I should be doing," Chris said with a smile. "My brother was the officer who brought you here. Do you remember coming here to the hospital?"

No response.

"So how long have you been on the Cape? There really isn’t much to do this time of year. But next month it’ll start picking up. A lot of tourists will be coming in." Chris found herself talking to fill in the silence. Talking was not her forte, she always felt more comfortable being the listener.

"Samantha is a nice name." 'What in the world am I supposed to say to her? I feel desperate. Sarah is probably wondering where the hell I am, and I can’t seem to pull myself away from this bedside. This is making no sense. Christina, you’ve never seen this woman before. She has not uttered one word to you and you’re feeling totally responsible for her.’

Just then the unit nurse came in with a large syringe filled with whatever Joy Slavin decided on to help Sam rest.

Chris immediately noticed Sam pulling on the restraints as the nurse got closer. At that moment, the tall woman felt a lump growing in her throat. ‘She’s so afraid and I can’t do a damn thing for her. Try to soothe her asshole,’ Chris chastised herself.

"Samantha, the nurse is going to give you something to help you rest. Don’t be afraid, I’m going to stay here with you for awhile. I promise nothing bad is going to happen to you," Chris said in the most calming voice she could conjure up.

While she was talking the nurse moved to the other side of the bed and lifted the blanket and administered the sedative.

"There you go young lady. Now that wasn’t bad was it?" the nurse said sounding like she was patronizing Sam.

‘Why do I feel like strangling this sorry piece of shit nurse. She’s talking to her like she’s a four-year-old,’ Chris fumed.

"She’ll be out of it in a few minutes," the nurse said rather loudly and Chris looked at her with a warning in her eyes. "Um, I think I’ll leave now," the nurse said hastily and departed quickly.

Fulfilling her promise to Sam that she would stay, Chris pulled a chair close to the bed and sat down. She stretched out her long legs and made herself comfortable. Sam would probably be asleep in a few minutes and then Chris would be on her way. She was sure that Sarah would not be happy with her tardiness. Just then her cell phone rang.

As Chris went to retrieve the phone she noticed Sam starting to tremble again. She was sure that if the restraints were removed, Sam would have huddled herself in a corner again. "It’s okay," Chris said soothingly. "It’s just my phone. See?" And with that she turned the phone off instead of answering it. There was no doubt in her mind that there would be hell to pay when she got home, but she didn’t care.

Leaning close to the side of the large hospital bed Chris gently brushed her fingers along Sam’s trembling arm testing to see if Sam would try to pull away. "What has you so frightened, Samantha?" Chris asked delicately, glad that there was no attempt to escape her touch.

Just then, tears started rolling down the gentle face of the strawberry blonde. Chris brought her hand up to capture what tears she could. She was struck by the softness of the pale skin that greeted her hand. "Samantha, I want you to listen to me sweetheart." ‘Oh God, where did that come from? Why did I call her sweetheart?’

Sam gazed deeply into dark blue and she made a small almost purring sound. Chris felt that Sam was trying to say something, but for whatever deep reason couldn’t verbalize her thoughts.

"I know you can hear me Samantha Daly. Now, what I want you to do is to close your eyes and try to rest. I’ll be here for awhile longer and again tomorrow. Okay now?" Chris asked almost pleading for Sam to trust her.

Within a few seconds Sam closed her eyes and Chris sighed in relief. ‘Now what do I do with you?’ she wondered. Maintaining her vigil, Chris leaned over and again started running her fingers lightly over Sam’s arm. "Go to sleep Samantha, go to sleep," Chris whispered.

It wasn't long before Chris noticed that Sam’s breathing was slow and deep. It was evident she was in a sound slumber. Whatever Joy had given her had calmed her enough so that the trembling had stopped completely. Chris rose from her chair to leave the room. Before doing so, however, she leaned over and gently moved the hair away from Sam’s face. She couldn’t resist placing a soft kiss on her forehead before leaving the room.


Upon settling herself into the big Ford Chris pulled out her cell phone to call Sarah. She was not surprised to find that her partner’s phone had been turned off. She then called home.

After a few rings a sleepy, obviously angry voice answered.

"Hi Sarah, I’m so sorry. Something is happening... at work and I was asked to respond to an emergency." Chris offered not really sounding sorry at all.

"Oh really? When I wasn’t able to get you on your phone I called the crime lab. Funny, they all thought you were at home," Sarah stated bluntly.

"I see. Look Sarah, I’m on my way home now. When I get there we’ll talk okay?" Chris asked, half hoping that Sarah would be asleep when she arrived.

"You know Chris, your problem is that you don’t see. You could have easily called me but you didn’t. Don’t bother rushing home, I really don’t feel like talking. After being stood up by my own partner I really don’t think I could stomach the sight of you now."

Chris’ eyebrow shot up at that last assault. "Well you know darling, the way you’re whining right now, I’m not so sure I can stomach you either," she shot back.

"Go to hell Chris," and with that Sarah slammed the phone down.

"Guess I’m on my own tonight," Chris said to herself, not affected in the least by her partner's tirade.


Forty-five minutes later Chris was paying the cover charge to get into the Rainbow Bar & Dance Club. ‘How in the world did Samantha Daly end up in this joint,’ she wondered.

Chris worked her way towards the bar. The place was quite busy since it was a popular spot for lesbians who liked to dance. This was not Chris’ idea of a fun place to be. She hated disco music and couldn’t stand strobe lighting. She’d take rhythm and blues over this any day.

When she reached the bar she was greeted by a tall blonde. "Hi, I haven’t seen you here before," the high pitched voice said.

Chris nodded and stated simply, "that’s right."

"Oh aren’t you the talkative type. My name's Carol, I own the place," the tall thin blonde said as she worked her way closer to the forensic psychologist.

Looking directly at the bar owner, Chris decided to take the upper hand. She pulled out her badge, announced that she was with the State Police and that she needed Carol to answer some questions. She pointedly told the bar owner she didn’t have time to play games.

"Well, I’m not looking for any trouble here," Carol quickly replied moving away. "Please, let’s go to my office."

As Chris followed her to the office, she noticed several women gawking at her as they made their way through the crowd on the dance floor. She gave them all her best ‘not a chance in hell’ look as she glided past them. Once in the office Chris pulled out the Rainbow Bar & Dance Club business card that Sam had at the time the police picked her up. Turning it over, she asked the owner if she recognized the phone number written on the back.

"That’s the home number to my new manager, Eppie Morgan. She just started here yesterday. Is there a problem? I’ll get rid of her before I have any problems with the police," Carol stated firmly.

"Is she here now?" Chris asked shortly. "If she is I want to speak with her."

"Of course. I’ll get her," Carol said and left the office to retrieve her manager. She wanted this cop out of her place. It was always bad for business when law enforcement started hanging around.

When Eppie entered the office she looked concerned but not worried. She hadn’t done anything wrong. "Hi, I’m Eppie Morgan. I understand you wanted to question me about something."

Chris noticed that Eppie spoke with a no nonsense approach. "This business card was found in the possession of a young woman picked up earlier today. It has your phone number on it."

Looking at the card, Eppie had a troubled expression on her face. "Is Sam alright? What’s happened to her?"

"I was hoping you could tell me," Chris stated looking directly into the dark brown eyes.

"Are you trying to imply something officer?" Eppie retorted.

Chris raised both brows. "No, and the title is doctor, not officer. I’m a forensic psychologist, not a cop. How do you know Samantha Daly?"

"I met her for the first time yesterday. Here. She was upset about something and was running from the bathroom. She ran into me. That’s how we met."

"What else?" Chris was not in the mood to play twenty questions.

"We arranged to meet when I got off work. We went for a walk down to that coffeehouse by the docks. She decided at the last minute she was tired and wanted to go home. I kept asking her if there was something wrong, but all she would tell me was she was tired. I noticed she was trembling. so I wrapped my arm around her shoulder, I thought she was cold. She was still trembling when I kissed her good night. That’s when I gave her the card. I asked her to call me because I was concerned for her. She got in her car and left. End of story."

"What did she tell you about herself?" Chris asked feeling a pang of jealousy growing in her stomach.

"Just that she was from New York, was here on vacation and thinking about relocating to New England. What’s happened to her?" Eppie inquired again, feeling her patience starting to fray.

"She’s in the hospital. Is there anything else you want to add?" Chris rose to leave.

"In the hospital doesn’t explain what happened to her, doctor," The manager said accusingly.

Chris turned quickly back towards Eppie and coming as close as she could without touching her sneered, "if I knew what happened to her I wouldn’t be in this stinking hellhole asking you that very same thing, now would I, Ms. Morgan?"

‘Damn, is she a mean one,’ Eppie thought before opening her mouth to respond. "I’m sorry doctor. I’m concerned about Sam. I like her and was hoping I could get to know her better," the bar manager responded, sounding concerned.

"I just bet you were Ms. Morgan," Chris said tersely before darting out of the office and out of the bar.


Back in her Expedition, Chris called the hospital to see how Sam was doing. She was relieved to hear that the young woman was sleeping peacefully.

‘Now where do I go? It’s after midnight and my partner wants nothing to do with me. Well at least that feeling’s mutual.' After thinking over her options for a few minutes Chris was fuming. 'This is bullshit. I’m tired and I live there too.’ Chris’ decision made, she went home.

"Holy shit. I can’t believe she’s doing this," Chris growled as she opened the front door to the apartment and saw her luggage sitting there. "SARAH!" she bellowed as she stomped towards their bedroom. Surely the tenants on the floor above and below heard her yell.

"Sarah what the hell is going on here? Why are my bags packed?"

"That’s a pretty foolish question don’t you think Chris? We had a dinner date remember? Actually I believe we talked about needing a nice quiet romantic evening. Just you and me. I also remember talking about dessert. Don’t you remember, Chris?" Sarah said putting the emphasis on the CH.

"I remember. But something happened Sarah and I’m sure you wouldn’t understand. Perhaps it is better for me to leave. I probably should have left a long time ago," Chris threw in just for the sake of stinging her soon to be ex-partner of five years.

"You know Chris, I don’t think you’re capable of making a permanent commitment. All you did was use me and I got nothing in return. Absolutely nothing," Sarah said waspishly as angry tears fell.

Now they were just saying things for the purpose of hurting the other.

"You’re wrong Sarah - you got my life... for five fucking years! And in the end it’s turned out to be a living hell. I’ll come by over the weekend for the rest of my things." That being said Chris stormed out of the apartment. She could hear Sarah throwing things at the door as she walked down the hall.

"What’s next Chris, ole girl? Hmm?" she said sarcastically as she tossed her luggage in the back of the Expedition.

"Well, Luke. I’m gonna blame you for this one, so you get to put up with me for awhile until I find a place." she said to the face in the rearview mirror as she pulled out of the apartment parking lot


By the time Chris had gotten to Luke’s it was one-thirty in the morning. ‘What a night," Chris was thinking tiredly as she rummaged quickly through her things trying to find something to wear for the next day that didn’t need ironing. By the time she was finished, everything that Sarah had packed was strewn about the back of the huge vehicle.

Chris started banging on Luke’s door. When it finally opened, she was surprised to see an attractive brunette with shoulder length hair standing behind her brother. "Um, what’s up Chris?" Luke asked confused by his sister’s sudden arrival and somewhat embarrassed by his lady friend’s scantily clad body clinging to him.

"It seems I’m without a place to live right now Luke. I told you I was supposed to meet Sarah for dinner. Remember that Luke?" she asked. Becoming nervous, Luke nodded his head in acknowledgement.

"Well I’m sure you must have realized..." Chris hissed as she moved closer to Luke, "that involving me in your little act of kindness..." Chris gritted through her now clenched teeth, "was going to really FUCK THINGS UP FOR ME," she thundered while grabbing him by the collar of his shirt.

The brunette let out a high pitched scream and Luke turned to her and told her to shut up.

"It’s not nice to talk to women like that Luke. I thought I taught you better," Chris said firmly, still holding onto him. "Now tell your little friend here to get dressed and go home. You see, LUKE, I’m moving in now."

"Okay, okay. Barbara honey, this is my um... sister. She needs to spend the night. So how about you leave now and I’ll call you in the morning." Luke said.

"Really, Barb, I’ll be okay," Luke added when he saw the worried look on his girlfriend’s face.

While Luke was saying his goodbyes to Barbara, Chris called the hospital again. She gave them the numbers to Luke’s place and her cell phone. She ended the conversation by telling the nurse that if there was any change in Sam’s condition she should be notified immediately. ‘Still no change,' she thought. 'This waiting is really getting to me, and why do I feel like I’m missing her?’

Luke found Chris in the kitchen leaning against a counter drinking a Heinekin. "So what happened?" her brother asked cautiously.

"Luke, tell me again why you wanted me to go see that girl," Chris requested while studying the bottle and unconsciously thinking that she liked the color green.

"I’m not sure. There was just something about her. And when her mother told me that she wanted nothing to do with her I couldn’t let it go. You know Chris, I often think that if it weren’t for you I probably wouldn’t be here today. In fact, I probably would have either been dead or in jail. Everybody needs somebody to care for them. I just had a terrible feeling that Samantha Daly didn’t have anyone. I was feeling real bad for her, Chris. I’m sorry if I put you in a bad spot. I was only hoping you would make sure she got the right kind of help. I can’t explain it, and I’m no head doctor, but I don’t think she’s as fucked up as what she appears now. That’s all." Luke finished.

Looking up from her bottle, Chris stared intently at her brother. ‘He really did turn out okay' she thought. 'His problem is he’s naïve and idealistic. Some day he’s gonna get hurt because of it.’ "Go to bed Luke. It’s been a long day" she said in almost a motherly tone as she turned to look out the window that faced a neatly landscaped yard dotted with a few large oak trees.



Chris tossed and turned for what seemed like hours. A portrait was etched in her mind of the beautiful strawberry blonde with a dash of freckles running across her nose accenting the gentle features of her face. Finally Chris rolled over and glanced at the clock. It was now five in the morning and she hadn’t slept at all. ‘Enough of this’ she thought as she rose from the bed and made her way to the shower.

Taking a long hot shower, Chris noted her own reflection in the mirror. She compared her tanned complexion and angular face with the high cheekbones and piercing blue eyes to that of the young blonde. ‘Couldn’t be any more different, could we,’ she thought as she towel dried her long dark hair. ‘I wonder what you like Samantha Daly. Do you like to watch old movies, go for walks along the beach, rollerblading, reading, ice cream and cookies?’

Chris left the house quietly. She left a note for her brother telling him that she would call him later. The big Ford Expedition seemed to find its own way to the hospital, the driver having other things on her mind.

Chris’ first stop was at the nurses' station. There were only a couple of nurses on duty at this time and there was little activity at the station. The head nurse, a rather petite woman with, in Chris’ opinion too much make-up on, told her that except for one incident Sam had a peaceful night.

"Incident?" Chris asked, her left eyebrow rising along with the tone of her voice.

"She woke up and wanted us to remove the restraints so she could use the bathroom. So we tried to get her to use the bed pan but she didn’t like that idea," the nurse concluded.

"So she communicated?" Chris prompted.

"Yes. Like I said Dr. Polis she needed to relieve herself."

"How is she this morning? Is she still talking?" Chris continued with her questioning of the obviously agitated nurse.

"She seems okay. The trembling has stopped but she’s not talking to any of us. I think she’s angry because we wouldn’t remove the restraints."

"Was Dr. Slavin notified when Ms. Daly became coherent?"

"We thought we would tell her when she arrived this morning. She’s on morning duty."

"What time is she due to arrive?" Chris persisted with her questioning.

"She should be here by 10," the nurse said with some irritation in her voice.

"That’s too late. Get Dr. Slavin on the phone." Chris demanded.

"But Dr. Polis, we really do have things under control. With all due respect I don’t think it’s necessary to disturb Dr. Slavin so early in the morning," the nurse replied hoping she hadn’t said anything out of line to the psychologist who seemed to tower above her shorter frame.

"I am sure Dr. Slavin would be grateful to know that her head nurse cares so much about her comfort. I’ll be sure to let her know that when I speak with her. So, if you don’t mind, and for the last time, get Dr. Slavin on the phone NOW," Chris gritted out through clenched teeth as she moved with authority towards the office reserved for consulting practitioners.

A half a minute later the phone in the office rang. "Polis, what are you doing there so early in the morning and why are you trying to scare my staff out of their pants?"

"It’s not early for me Joy and your head nurse isn’t wearing pants. Perhaps if she did it wouldn’t be so easy to scare her. Did she tell you about my conversation with her?"

"Yeah, she did. You want the restraints removed, right?" Joy asked.

"Joy, I know it’s against procedure but like I said yesterday this case really is different. It doesn’t involve the police anymore since she’s not being charged with anything. I’ll stay here with her until you arrive. I won’t let her out of my sight. If she should make any move to hurt herself again I’ll have the restraints put back on. I give you my word," Chris pleaded.

"I’ll make you a deal Chris. I’m going to tell Nurse James to give our pretty patient a mild sedative. Allow at least fifteen minutes and then you can remove the restraints. I’ll be there within an hour. I’m trusting that you’ll take appropriate measures should there be a need," Joy said knowing that Chris’ heart had kicked in and was working major overtime.

"I promise I won’t jeopardize your esteemed status at the hospital, Joy," the tall dark-haired woman said a bit facetiously. "I’ll put your lovely nurse back on the phone. I appreciate what you’re doing here Joy. See you later."


Chris entered Sam’s room feeling a bit of trepidation. The sun was just beginning to rise and its rays were starting to brighten up the small, white room. The forensic psychologist moved slowly about the room. She wasn’t sure what to expect. Sam was awake and staring out the window, her attention obviously elsewhere and not on the comings and goings of people in the room.

"Good morning," Chris said in her softest voice. "I’m not sure if you remember me from last evening, but I’m Chris Polis. How are you feeling Samantha?"

Slowly Sam turned her head in the direction of the deep smooth voice. The strawberry blonde recognized her from the night before but wasn’t sure why the tall woman was there. Chris did everything she could to keep herself from running to Sam’s side and wrapping her in her arms. The ebony-haired woman worked her way to the edge of the bed and stood looking down on the young woman.

"I spoke with Dr. Slavin a short while ago. In a few minutes the nurse will be coming in to give you something. Dr. Slavin said that afterwards they will remove the restraints." Chris explained.

"Thank you," Sam whispered. It was the only response the young woman could get out at the moment.

Just as Chris had said, a nurse came in and administered the shot. Sam’s face scrunched up at the activity. As the nurse pushed the blanket back into place she patted Sam’s leg and told her she would have an aide come in to help her get herself cleaned. At that Sam’s face turned a deep shade of red. Chris could see the tears building.

"Thank you, but Ms. Daly won’t be needing the assistance of an aide. I’m sure we can take care of things here," Chris said hoping the nurse understood. The nurse nodded and left the room without any further comment.

"So Samantha, how are you feeling today?" Chris asked brightly.

There was no response.

"Now I know you can talk because just a few minutes ago you thanked me." Chris said with a smile on her face.

"Where am I?" Sam asked with a slight slur to her speech as the sedative was obviously taking effect.

"You’re at the county hospital Samantha. Do you remember coming here yesterday?"

Sam shook her head no in response. "Why am I here?"

"The police were called to the boarding house where you were staying. They were concerned for you so they brought you here to the hospital," Chris supplied.

Sam’s eyes appeared to be getting heavy so Chris decided it would be OK to take the restraints off. She wanted to get her cleaned up before the sedative took full effect.

As soon as her hands were freed, Sam brought both up to her face, rolled onto her side facing away from Chris, curled up into a tight ball and sobbed. Chris was at a loss for words so she laid her hand on the small woman’s back and gently massaged the area hoping to bring some comfort to the very distressed young woman. Gradually the dark-haired psychologist could feel the crying begin to subside.

"How about we try to get you to the bathroom. You’ll feel much better after you’ve taken a shower." Chris didn’t wait for Sam’s response. Instead she placed her long arms under Sam’s much shorter ones and slowly pulled her to her feet. "You’re going to be a little light headed so take it easy, okay." Although Chris didn’t show it, she was amused by Sam’s feeble attempt to hold the hospital gown together in the back. ‘Ah, she’s the modest type.’ It was the first time she had seen Sam standing and was struck by her small, petite frame. She felt the warmth of Sam’s body as she held her up.

After entering the bathroom Chris directed Sam to the toilet and helped her to sit. Sam sat there but didn’t do anything. Bending down so she was at eye level with her charge she said "Samantha, I really can’t leave you alone right now because the medication the nurse gave you sometimes makes people dizzy. I’m afraid that you may fall and hurt yourself. Please try not to be embarrassed."

Sam was struck by the intensity of the blue eyes that penetrated into her. She relaxed at the softly spoken words and relieved herself. Chris also relaxed at that moment. ‘One hurdle jumped. Now onto the shower,’ Chris thought.

Leading her to the shower, Chris told Sam that she would get the water set to the right temperature and then help her into the stall. She directed Sam to sit on the bench in the stall and to take whatever time she needed, but under no circumstances was she to stand and move about without her assistance. "Do you understand me?" Chris asked crisply, sounding like a drill sergeant. Sam shook her head in acknowledgement thinking the woman was a bit bossy. Which, of course, Chris was.

Finally having the temperature set, Chris helped Sam into the shower. She tried to help her remove the gray hospital gown, but Sam stubbornly held onto to it, refusing to remove it until she got into the shower and had the curtain pulled. Once in the stall, she tossed the gown out onto the floor of the bathroom and sat on the bench as instructed. As the warm water cascaded over her body Sam couldn’t help but wonder who this person was and why she was taking care of her. She marveled at her beautiful tall languid body that moved with grace and sureness. Her features were striking - the vibrant blue eyes, high cheekbones, and long ebony hair. Her heart started beating at a more rapid pace and her mouth was now very dry. Suddenly Sam began to feel a sensation building between her legs. She slowly moved her hands over her body taking great care in washing herself. Why was her body tingling like this? Continuing with her shower, Sam sat quietly, moving the wash cloth over her body, with her eyes closed for a few extra minutes still sensing the feelings.

Chris got a little concerned when she didn’t hear any movement so she peeked around the curtain to check on Sam. ‘Oh my God,’ Chris said to herself as her own heart started pounding. She caught herself staring at Sam’s beautifully full and firm milky white breasts, her nipples peaked from the water that was now cooling. Sam’s hair was wet and hanging over her shoulders. Her arms and legs were well toned and Chris imagined herself being enveloped in them. She unconsciously licked her lips to wet them and grudgingly moved away to allow Sam her privacy as Sam continued to run the wash cloth over her soft body.

Sam licked her lips at the precise same moment.

"Samantha? Isn’t that water getting a little cold now?" Chris asked several minutes later.

No response.

Chris got up from her perch on the sink’s vanity and again peered behind the shower curtain. "Oh shit. What a great caretaker you are Polis," she chastised herself.

Leaning into the stall Chris gently nudged the softly snoring Sam. Getting no response she tried again, this time nudging a little harder.

"NO!" Sam screamed. "STAY AWAY, OH PLEASE STAY AWAY. LEAVE US ALONE. DON’T TOUCH ME, DON’T TOUCH ME, OHHHH..." she screamed and starting swatting at the invisible mosquitoes again.

Suppressing her initial surprise, Chris jumped into the stall in a flash. She quickly turned off the water and grabbed a large bath towel to use to wrap Samantha in to keep her from hurting herself.

"Samantha sweetheart listen to me. Samantha, I want you to look at me. Come on now. It’s just me Chris. I’m not going to hurt you. You’re safe here."

Chris slowly moved her hand to the side of Sam’s face and stroked gently. "Samantha honey. You’re okay. Come on now, let’s get you dried and back to your room, okay?" Sam was trembling again, but unlike yesterday with the police, Sam allowed Chris to touch her.

Upon hearing the screaming, Joy Slavin ran to the bathroom. She watched her longtime friend soothe the obviously frightened woman. She had never seen her comfort anyone like she was this young woman.

"What happened?’ Joy queried.

"I’m not sure. She fell asleep in the shower and when I went to wake her she acted like she was under attack or something," Chris responded as she tried to dry the trembling body. She wrapped another large towel around Sam and with soothing words told her she was going to take her back to her room. Dr. Slavin held the door open to Sam’s room as Chris led her in. The bed linens had been changed while they were in the shower.

Sam curled up on the bed, wrapped the blankets around herself and continued to tremble. She looked so tiny laying in the large bed.

"Chris, let’s go to my office. I think we could both use a cup of coffee." Joy suggested, having just arrived when she heard the commotion in the bathroom.

"I’m fine Joy," Chris said not budging from the side of the bed.

"Chris, I want to talk with you in my office," the doctor said with authority, "now."

As she was leaving the room, Joy Slavin stopped and was about to exert her authority in a more commanding way. She refrained when she saw a single tear trailing down her friend’s normally stoic face.

Going back to Chris, she put her hand on the strong arm of the psychologist. "Come on Chris, you need a break."

The two left the room in silence.


"Hold my calls Terry," Dr. Slavin told the nurse as she and Chris walked silently down the dimly lit hallway of the Psychiatric Unit.

Being the head of the unit, Joy had seen Chris handle many criminals with ease. She had an uncanny ability to decipher the good from the bad, the sane from the insane. While Chris had advocated heartily for several people she believed were dealt a bad hand in life that prompted them to turn to crime to sustain themselves, she had never seen her younger friend emotionally involved like this. There seemed to be no boundaries with this case and Chris was far from acting as a psychologist when it came to Sam’s treatment.

"Chris, how about telling me what’s going on?" the psychiatrist gently prodded with a caring voice as she poured a cup of coffee and handed it to the tall woman.

"What do you mean Joy?" Chris asked as she stared at a colorful mural hung on the powder blue painted walls of the office, deliberately pretending not to understand the question.

‘Okay, so she’s going to be pig headed about this. I’ve handled her before, I can do it again,’ Joy thought before pressing on. "What do you think I mean?" the doctor shot back.

"Well if you don’t explain yourself, how am I supposed to know," Chris retorted, again being deliberately obtuse.

"You’re getting too attached to this case. I want to know why."

"She’s not just a CASE, Joy. She has a name and I presume at some point in her 22 years she had a life." The agitation was evident in Chris’ voice

"And your point would be?" the doctor inquired knowing Chris was about to explode.

"The point is... if I don’t help her who will?" Chris countered, glaring at her friend.

"Chris, how long have you known Samantha Daly?"

"Less than a day," was the response.

"Less than a day, hmm? What is it about her, Chris? You’re defending her and watching over her like you’ve known her forever," the psychiatrist said as she held the tall woman’s attention.

Chris was silent for awhile trying to figure out the answer to Joy’s question. "I don’t know what it is, Joy. All I know is that when I look at her I feel like I have known her for a lifetime. I can’t even begin to explain why. I look in her eyes and I feel as though I’m being pulled to her. Like a magnet."

"You’re acting like you’re in love with her, Chris."

"Come on Joy. Now you’re being ridiculous. How could I be in love with somebody I just met yesterday?" she said forcing a chuckle.

Joy decided not to respond to Chris question and changed the direction of their conversation. "Did you check out that club listed on the business card?"

Chris was relieved for the change of subject. "Yeah, I went there. Not where I would hang out, but it also wasn’t the worse lesbian bar I’ve ever been to."

"And did you locate the person whose name was written on the card?"

"Yeah. She was somebody who took Samantha out on a date the night before last," Chris responded sounding a bit annoyed by that fact. "She said Samantha was trembling the whole time they were out but she thought it was because Samantha was cold. She said she was worried about her so she gave her the phone number. She also said she wanted to get to know Samantha that’s gonna happen. Hmmph," Chris concluded not cognizant of her final biting statement.

Joy’s own eyebrow lifted at the last comment. "I want to tell you what I have planned for Samantha today. I’ve already gotten the lab tests back. She could be a bit more diligent with her nutrition, but otherwise everything appears to be normal. We’re going to run the brain scan and do an MRI. Afterwards, I want Samantha to meet with Emily Matson. I think we need to explore what’s been going on in her life."

"Dr. Matson’s a psychologist." Chris said sharply.

"I know. You don’t like Dr. Matson?" Joy asked.

"She’s okay. You don’t have anybody with more experience though? I mean Matson’s only been practicing for two years."

If Chris weren’t her friend she would have burst out laughing. She remembered when Chris was just starting out and she had gotten really upset with somebody who doubted her abilities for the same reason. "Dr. Matson is one of the best psychologists we have on staff Chris. You don’t have to worry about the quality of Samantha’s care."

"I’d like to be there when she meets with Matson," Chris stated firmly.

‘Here we go,’ Dr. Slavin thought. "I can’t allow that Chris. You’re emotionally charged by this case, I mean situation. You’re too close to it. Matson is good and you know it. Give her the respect she deserves," The doctor insisted.

If looks could kill, certainly Joy Slavin would be dead. "Joy, come on now..."

"No Chris. I won’t give in on this. You’re emotionally charged by Samantha Daly." Joy stated simply, yet firmly. "Aren’t you late for work?" she asked trying to get Chris to leave.

"At least let me be with her when she’s taken for the brain scan and MRI. I don’t want the restraints put back on her. She responds to me when I’m with her."

For her part Joy was relieved that Chris didn’t press her on her assessment that she was too close to the troubled woman. "I’ll be sure that she’s treated well Chris. I’ll do whatever is necessary to keep from using the restraints. I really believe it would be good for you to get out of here for awhile. You need a break. Let us do our job, okay? Come back this afternoon and I’ll give you a full report. I give you my word she’ll be taken care of properly. In fact, I’ll personally oversee her case. I won’t assign any other psychiatrist to treat her. I’ll be involved each step of the way."

Chris looked up at the doctor appearing as though she were about to cry. ‘Chris Polis I wish I knew what was going on with you,’ Joy thought with a touch of concern while staring back at her friend. No, she definitely had never seen Chris like this.

"I’ll tell Samantha what’s going to happen today. Promise that you’ll call me if anything changes?" Chris asked looking for reassurance that her friend would contact her if something happened.

"We should be finished with the tests by late this morning. Then I’ll have Matson see her right after lunch." Joy stated providing the timeline of events for Chris.

"Okay, so I’ll see you about mid-afternoon." Chris said as she turned to leave Joy’s office.

"Chris, if you can, try to get some sleep. You’re not going to be any good for her if you can’t think clearly because you’re exhausted."

"Right," Chris said as she closed the door behind her knowing there was no way she would be able to rest until she knew what was going on with the younger woman.


‘I really don’t like the idea of leaving her alone,’ Chris thought as she entered Sam’s room to tell her what was going to happen. She looked at the bed and noticed that Sam was turned so she could look out the window and was watching a flock of Canadian Geese fly by. Chris watched as Sam’s eyes slowly followed the geese on their way to God only knows where.

"Hey," she said softly as she approached the bed. To her surprise, Sam rolled over to face her upon hearing the simple greeting. While looking into the strawberry blonde's eyes Chris couldn’t help but think again that she loved the color green as she reached the edge of the bed and sat down on it. Sam sidled her way closer to Chris but stopped just short of touching her long frame. ‘I think she’s beginning to trust me,’ Chris thought hopefully.

"I was just talking with Dr. Slavin. She’s ordered a couple of tests for you. They have to take you to another room to do them so somebody will be coming in to help you. She also wants you to talk with somebody by the name of Dr. Matson while you’re here. I'm sorry but I can’t be with you while they’re running the tests and all. Samantha, I think it’s real important that we do what Dr. Slavin advises. She promised me she’d personally watch over things. I trust her Samantha, she’s been a good friend to me over the years." Chris hoped her words would put the younger woman at ease.

Sam watched the blue orbs and listened intently to the words coming from the beautiful woman sitting on the edge of the bed. She couldn’t bring herself to say anything so instead she took her small hand and wrapped it around the larger one resting on the bed. She slowly brought the hand to her mouth and placed a gentle kiss on it before relinquishing it to its owner.

An unbelievable wave of warmth, care and love filled Chris’ entire being at that moment. The simple gesture caused her heart to leap and she realized she had no words to describe how she was feeling. Her smile alone brightened the otherwise dreary room. She leaned over and placed a similar kiss on her Samantha’s forehead. ‘My Samantha??’ "I’ll be back this afternoon. Try to eat something while I’m gone okay?" she added after hearing a tiny rumble coming from Sam’s belly.

As she got closer to the door Chris could have sworn she heard her name being called. She turned and was relieved when she saw a tiny smile on the strawberry blonde's face. "See you later," she said gently, a smile appearing on her own face, as she left the room.

"See you later," Sam whispered softly back as the door closed.


A few minutes later Dr. Slavin came in holding a chart. She was pleased to see that Sam was sitting up in the bed and not curled up in a ball as she had been when she last left the room. ‘Well Chris, it appears as though you’re having an effect on her too,’ she thought.

"Hi Samantha. I’m Dr. Joy Slavin. I want to run some tests to see how your brain is functioning. Once we get the results we’ll be able to determine how we should proceed. Neither of the tests will hurt, but they can be uncomfortable, especially if you’re feeling a little anxious. I want to give you something for the anxiety. It’ll help you to relax," she finished noticing Sam’s reaction at the mention of more medication.

"The effect of the sedative won’t last long. Maybe an hour or so. I’m concerned that the tests may cause you discomfort and that you may react in a way that could cause you to harm yourself," she concluded.

Wanting to avoid the restraints being put back on her, Sam reached out for the pill the doctor held. She swallowed it making a face as if it were going to come back up. ‘So she doesn’t like swallowing pills,’ Joy noted knowing that if they prescribed medication Sam would most likely avoid taking it if she could.

At that point an orderly came in with a wheel chair and helped Sam into it. Dr. Slavin hid her smile while thinking it would have been an easier task to get her into the chair if Sam would just let go of the rear of the gown.

The brain scan went without incident but the MRI was a different story. Once inside Sam was told not to move. All of a sudden it had gotten real dark. The air inside the machine was frigid and she imagined that she was barricaded in a cold cave. Her heart was pounding furiously and she wanted to shout out. She felt she had to get out but couldn’t move.

When the test was completed and the MRI machine was opened to reveal its lone occupant, Dr. Slavin was taken aback by the sight before her. Sam lay there, fear embedded on her now pale features with tears flowing from her eyes. She was shaking, but not trembling as before. "Chris, CHris, CHRis, CHRISTINA," she cried out.

"Shh, you’re okay. You did great Samantha. The test is over and you’re fine," Dr. Slavin assured her young patient while looking down and patting her on her shoulder. "Chris will be here this afternoon. Everything is okay. Come on, let’s get you back to your room."

Joy Slavin was amazed that for as distraught as Sam was she continued to hold onto the hospital gown. She found that little impulse endearing and chided herself. She couldn’t risk getting emotionally involved with this girl so she shook off the feeling. She’d make it a point to call Chris and have her bring something for Sam to wear that didn’t reveal her behind every time she got up.

When they got back to the room a tray holding a cheese sandwich, fruit and juice was waiting. Sam’s eyes lit up at the sight of the food. It had been almost two days since she had eaten. She hadn’t even thought of food until she saw the tray. The psychiatrist told her to take her time eating and she said she would be back in a little while so they could talk then.


Entering the busy State Police Headquarters Chris immediately went to see Al Miller. Al, a tall, well-built middle aged man, had been the head of the crime lab and her supervisor since she started working there a little more than a year ago. "Chris you’re three hours late. Where’ve you been? You were supposed to be at the 8:00 meeting?"

"Look Al, I know this is short notice but I need to take a few days off. Something has come up."

"Not even a good morning or a how are you doing today? You know we’ve got a tight schedule now with Ascott and Zirling away at that conference," Miller responded sourly.

"I know it’s not a good time, but I really need the days off. I haven’t taken a day off since I started. I already have three weeks vacation due me, not to mention the personal days and all those holidays I worked. Come on Al, I’ve never asked you for anything and it’s been dead around here lately. Surely you can spare me for a few days. I’ll even wear the beeper. If there’s an emergency you can call me and I’ll come right in." Chris pleaded.

"You’ll carry the beeper at all times?" he asked irritably.

"I promise Al. You can reach me at any time."

Seeing the desperation in her eyes Al reluctantly agreed. "Alright, I’ll approve it this time Chris. But don’t hit me with anymore last minute requests. Just make sure you’re back next Wednesday. We need you in court for the Logan case."

"Thanks Al. And I will be back."

As Chris was leaving her supervisor's office she stopped to pick up her messages. Glancing through them she saw that Sarah had called four times. "What the fuck does she want," Chris said as she threw the messages into the wastepaper basket and headed for the squad room to find her brother only to be told he was in court.


Shortly after lunch Joy briefed Emily Matson on the Psych Unit’s newest arrival. Dr. Matson was a tall dark skinned African American woman. She had several earrings running around each ear and wore her hair in a short Afro. She received the full briefing including Chris’ involvement. "So what you’re saying is that Chris is requiring as much attention as Samantha."

"You comprehend things quite well," Joy chuckled as they proceeded to Sam’s room.

"Sam, this is Dr. Matson. She is a psychologist on our staff. I would like for you to talk with her for a awhile." Joy said noticing the food tray was void of its contents. "Chris should be back by the time you’re finished talking."

"What do you want to talk about?" Sam asked in a such a soft tone that it was almost impossible to hear.

"Well, I’d like to hear about you, where you come from, how you ended up here on the Cape. Things like that." Dr. Matson encouraged.

"I come from New York. My parents kicked me out. I got in my car and drove here. End of story." Sam stated bluntly.

‘Ah. So she’s going to be a toughie. Good. Just what I need. Like Chris Polis’ involvement isn't already enough,’ Matson sarcastically, remembering her last run in with the tall woman over an assessment she had done on somebody charged with assault. "Well, that’s a start Sam. Maybe you could tell me more about home."

"I’ll leave you two alone for awhile. And Sam, I think it’s really important that you try to answer Dr. Matson’s questions as completely as possible. We need to find out what’s going on in order to help you," Dr. Slavin said mildly admonishing Sam for her curt response before she left the room.

Now alone with her patient, Dr. Matson pressed on. "Tell me about your family, Sam."

"My father is an attorney and my mother, well I don’t know what you would say she is. She doesn’t work, but she’s always involved in something. She’s active in church affairs and politics. I also have an older sister Dawn who will be getting married in a few months. She doesn’t work either. She’s following in my mothers footsteps." It was the most Sam had spoken in at least two days. She leaned over for some water to soothe her dry throat.

"And what kind of work do you do Sam?"

"I don’t work either. I dropped out of law school last month. I was supposed to join my fathers firm after graduation. I don’t know what I’ll do now." Sam said with a hint of sadness in her voice.

"Why did you drop out of school?"

"I couldn’t stay there anymore."

"Why not?"

After a minute of silence, Sam’s quivering voice spoke words that were filled with pain "I just couldn’t. My parents didn’t understand. They weren’t there," she finished as she turned and stared out of the window. She could see that it would probably rain soon.

"Why did you leave home?" Matson asked.

"I told you. My parents kicked me out," bitterness evident as she spoke.

"Why did they do that?"

"We couldn’t agree on how to handle 'the incident'. In the end they won. But they always do," Sam said sounding as though she expected the doctor to know what she was talking about.

"The incident?"

"Yes," was Sam’s only response as she began to fidget.

"What was the incident?" Dr. Matson inquired, knowing she was pushing the young woman a little harder than she should.

At that moment Sam got up from the bed and started pacing as sweat appeared on her face. It was evident that the medication was still working because even though the trembling had returned it wasn’t nearly as bad as Matson had been told Sam had previously experienced.

"If you don’t want to talk about it now it’s okay, Sam," the psychologist offered just as Sam’s eyes began to dart back and forth across the room. "Actually, I think you’ve done great today. How about if I come back early this evening and we’ll talk more then."

Just as the psychologist was about to leave the room, Sam ran to the bathroom. Everything she had for lunch made a quick exit. ‘Okay, so she throws up when she gets upset,’ Dr. Matson thought as she waited for the strawberry blonde to finish in the bathroom.

Sam headed right for the bed and lay down when she came out of the bathroom. "I’m sorry. I’m not feeling too good right now. My stomach’s a little upset. If we could talk later I’d appreciate it. Maybe I’ll be feeling better then."

Dr. Matson couldn’t believe that Sam was apologizing to her. ‘Damn, is she polite. None of my patients has ever before apologized to me for making them physically sick.’ "It’s alright Sam. I understand it’s difficult for you. You’re doing really well. We’ll continue later," she said gently before leaving.

Feeling suddenly tired Sam rolled on her side and drifted off to sleep.


The ring of Chris' cell phone startled her out of her deep thoughts. "Hello."

"Chris, hi it’s Joy."

"What’s wrong? I knew I should have stayed," she shouted excitedly into the phone without giving the head of the psych unit a chance to talk.

"Woah, slow down there. Everything is fine. I’m just calling to ask you to bring some clothes for Sam. She’s real self-conscious while wearing the hospital gowns. I guess they reveal more than she’s accustomed to."

"Damn Joy, you scared me. Sure, sure." Chris said relieved. "What should I bring? What size is she?"

"Something that would be comfortable and I have no idea what size she is. Give it your best shot. And Chris, hurry the hell up. I promised her you would be here by the time she finishes with Matson. Make sure you stop in to see me first when you get here."

"I’m on my way Joy. I’ll be there in about a half an hour," she responded quickly as she made an illegal turn into the shopping center she was just passing.

Chris didn’t walk to the department store, she ran. She made her way to the petite women’s section and then came to an abrupt stop. ‘What the hell do I get her? Something comfortable and something that covers her cute little behind, asshole. That’s what you get her.’ Chris went to the rack holding flannel shorts. ‘Yeah this will do,’ she thought as she pulled two pairs off the rack. One was a dark green and the other was the same color as the strawberry blonde's hair. She held the shorts up and examined them. ‘They look about the right size.’ In a hurry she found two v-neck T-shirts, paid for all of the items and then was on her way.

As she was on her way out of the store, Chris passed by the lingerie area. ‘Damn, underwear. I forgot the underwear. Shit, now this is really out of my league. I have never bought underwear for anyone except myself.’ Knowing that time was of the essence the forensic psychologist examined some panties and bras, made her selections and finally left the store.


As Chris was heading into the hospital parking lot she saw a State Police car pull into the emergency lane. Luke jumped out of the car and ran towards her, flagging her down. Chris pulled into the first space she saw.

"What’s the matter Luke," she asked seeing the concern in his face.

"Chris, I think you should see this. I found it in Samantha’s purse when I was looking for the keys to her car. It might explain some things," he said hastily while pulling a yellowed piece of paper from his pocket.

Taking the paper, Chris made a snide comment to him about rifling through women’s purses. Her comment had no impact on him. "Just read the damn thing Chris," Luke snapped obviously annoyed with his sister.

After giving her brother what could only be described as a dirty look, Chris unfolded the paper. It was an article from the November 12, 1998 New York Times. The headline read: Coed Found Raped & Murdered, 2nd Victim Refuses to Cooperate." "Oh fuck. Shit. God Luke this is terrible. Any idea what the outcome of the case was."

"Yeah, the guys got off. I called a buddy of mine who’s an investigator with the district attorney's office there. Seems there was nobody around to provide testimony when the case finally went to trial. Sam was accused of skipping out at the last minute. They investigated her because the prosecutors thought there might have been a pay-off to keep her from testifying. Everybody who was involved, the victim and the perps came from real prestigious families. The father of one of the accused is a high-ranking member of some prominent religious right organization. Sam’s mother is also deeply involved in the same organization. Since the trial had already been delayed several times the judge refused to adjourn it and dropped the charges when they couldn’t find Sam. There was a follow-up article in which the victim’s family said some really bad things about her. They accused her of being part of a plot to clear the guys who were responsible. My buddy told me that the Daly family made a public display announcing disappointment in their daughter’s disappearance. The DA’s office, however, thinks her family was behind it. Seems their reputation was being tarnished, although I can’t figure that one out. I mean, she was a victim too." Luke finally finished.

Chris appeared dazed by the sudden onslaught of information. "What happened to Samantha?" she asked sounding as though she could barely get the words out.

"My buddy doesn’t know for sure. He said they had been trying to get her to open up and tell them what happened, but she would break down when she got closer to describing the actual crime. She refused medical treatment. He said the prosecutors reached a point where they just wanted her to ID the guys. But, as you know, that never happened. Poor kid."

"Listen, um Luke..." Chris stopped, she wasn’t able to find the words.

Luke understood. He also felt an unexplained connection to the girl. "If you need anything, anything at all Chris I want you to track me down," he offered, the compassion evident as he addressed his sister. "We’ll talk later, okay?" he said as he lightly grabbed Chris’ arm. All she could do was nod her head as she turned and headed into the hospital, the article held securely in her hand.


The young woman was sitting at the edge of a large blue lake that was surrounded by tall trees. The birds were singing a song she could not recall ever hearing before. It was beautiful. The sun was beginning to retire for the day and its last rays shining on the strong back of a tall, tanned figure wading in the water. In a flash, a fish landed in her lap. It was wiggling and while she attempted to grab a hold of it the fish was just too slimy and kept skirting her attempts.

"Ew, why did you do that? Get this thing away from me!" she yelled to her tall partner.

The tanned figure came running up to her laughing. She leaned down and removed the fish with ease and then placed a long searing kiss on the full lips of the young woman. When their lips parted, both women were gasping for air. "Come on" the tall woman said guiding her towards the trees.

"Where are we going. I thought you were going to fish for awhile," she said.

"I’ve already caught what I want," her partner responded while looking down at her seductively.

"You have, hmmm? I only saw one fish. That’s enough for me. What are you going to have?" she asked.

Now behind the trees in a grass covered glen, the tanned woman turned to her. Placing long arms around her much smaller frame, she was pulled close to the strong body. A long, deliberate and earth shattering kiss was delivered. When the kiss ended, they laid on the ground, the tall woman consuming her smaller body. She felt the wetness coming from her center as the strong hands roamed her body, loving it as it had never been before.

Suddenly it got very dark and she felt a stinging sensation covering her body. The strong body of the tanned figure was gone. She cried out for the stinging creatures to leave her. Using her hands she swatted furiously to keep any more from attacking and clinging to her skin. It hurt so badly and her skin felt as if it was on fire. Her cries went unheard.


Behind the door, the doctor was pulled from her paperwork by a soft knock. "Come in," she called. When the door opened she was surprised to see Chris. Her tall friend always knocked but she never waited for permission to enter. From the look on her face, Joy Slavin was sure something was terribly wrong.

"Chris, what is it," concern emanating from the head doctor.

"Read this Joy. I think it holds some answers as to what’s happened to Samantha," she said gravely handing the article over. When she finished reading it Chris filled her in on the other information her brother had provided.

After a few minutes Joy looked up at her friend. "Chris, I’m so sorry. You know we’ll do everything we can to help her. Reaching for the phone she called the nurses' station and asked them to find Dr. Matson. She wanted to fill her in immediately.

"What? I told you I wanted to be notified IMMEDIATELY if there were any changes. Next time, DO IT or I’ll have you up on disciplinary charges!" Joy Slavin was enraged as she slammed the phone down.

"Come on Chris. Samantha’s in trouble."

The two ran from the office as if their own lives were at stake. Stopping briefly at the nurses' station, the psychiatrist handed the article to a nurse and instructed her to give it to Emily Matson as soon as she arrived on the unit.


Listings of works by Jam Fan Fiction
Return to the Fan Fiction area