DISCLAIMER: Crossing Jordan and all its characters are property of NBC. No infringement intended.
CHALLENGE: Written for Passion & Perfection's Big 5000.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

One Leap of Faith
By lysachan


Jordan Cavanaugh tiptoed silently around the dark room in search of various items of clothing. Rummaging through blouses and socks, she finally located a bra that looked familiar enough and snatched it from under a lone shoe.

It was like this everytime. Everytime she spent the night she'd be up at four, cursing under hear breath, because she didn't dare to turn on the light – that would only wake up the person sleeping peacefully in the bed nearby.

Smoothing the hem of her shirt, Jordan glanced at the blonde who was still fast asleep, her hair like a halo around her head. It was a sight that made Jordan's heart ache, but she steeled herself against the feeling of longing and turned away bitterly. She wasn't completely selfless when she let Lu sleep; had she woken up, the blonde would've asked—no, pleaded—Jordan to stay, and the staying part scared the brunette more than anything.

It all seemed so ridiculous to her, but still she couldn't bring herself to spend the night without fleeing before sunrise. Perhaps, if she stayed, it would somehow make it official, and Jordan wasn't at all certain she could handle that. It was bad enough that she was sleeping with a co-worker—and a female one at that—but that was nowhere near as frightening as what she could actually feel for her.

She had this battle with herself every morning, and yet almost every night she was back standing at Lu's door, about to repeat the whole ordeal again. And the blonde would let her in, and they'd talk about work for a while, as if neither of them knew where it all was leading to. And when the discussion would reach that critical point when neither of them had the power to pretend anymore, they would clash together, lips hot and hungry on each other, and they would make love over and over again before collapsing back to the bed, the feeling of euphoria wrapping them both in a blissful haze.

Swallowing hard, Jordan turned away from the bed and moved silently towards the door, but the sleepy voice of her lover paralysed her before she could reach it.

"What are you so afraid of?" It was nearly a whisper, but Jordan could still detect the deep hurt in Lu's voice.

She didn't answer—how could she? Sighing, the brunette turned around and met the eyes she knew to be bluer than those of anyone else's she'd ever seen. She shifted her gaze to the window above the bed and chewed her lower lip while trying to come up with something to say. How could she possibly answer why she was such a coward when she didn't even know the answer herself?

"I just...can't stay," she finally said quietly, daring herself into looking at the blonde again. Her heart lurched painfully as her eyes landed on the detective; the resigned way Lu's shoulders sagged and how her hair fell on her face filled Jordan with an unexpected want to go over to the bed and wrap her arms around Lu. But she knew she couldn't do that.

"Is it me?" Lu asked, putting up a brave face, but Jordan knew it was just a façade to hide the hopelessness she felt.

"No," the brunette said simply, involuntarily taking a few steps forward. "It's definitely not you. I swear." She watched helplessly as Lu stood up from the bed, wrapped herself in a white bedsheet, and walked slowly to her. She swallowed, her brain screaming to get out of there as fast as possible, but her muscles didn't seem to be cooperating. She stayed rooted to the spot, hands trembling, vulnerable.

"Stay." Lu slowly raised her hand to rest on Jordan's cheek, as if giving the brunette a chance to retreat, and Jordan felt the trembling increase. "Please." A whisper. She could feel her resistance crumble by the second, leaving her naked and exposed, just like she'd been afraid of.

"Lu...," she began, but the blonde's lips tenderly silenced her, and she knew she'd lost the battle. Hesitating for only a moment, Jordan pulled Lu closer and kissed her back, eagerly, feeling her soft curves under the bedsheet that still stubbornly clung to the blonde's body.

Inching towards the bed, Jordan's clothes were soon again scattered on the floor where she'd picked them up only minutes earlier. She broke the kiss to gently tug at the sheet Lu was still grasping and smiled wickedly when it fell on the floor. Claiming the blonde's lips again, they fell on the bed, their bodies molded together.

Stopping for just a second, Jordan gazed down at the woman beneath her, her chest heaving. Emotionally she had no idea what she was doing; she didn't do relationships, and she was fairly sure that was exactly where all this was leading to. Perhaps a look of doubt crossed her face, because suddenly she felt Lu's hand on her cheek again. Automatically leaning into it, she sighed.

"It's okay," Lu said quietly, pushing a lock of hair from Jordan's face behind her ear.

"I know." She really meant it. She was absolutely terrified, but she meant it. It could work, she'd taken the first step already and it didn't kill her. Making the most important decision of her life, she closed her eyes briefly and smiled. Leaning down, she barely saw Lu smile back lovingly before claiming her lips again.

Oh, yes. Definitely a step forward.

The End

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