Facts, Just the Facts

A Rizzoli & Isles (T/V) Story

by Enginerd

Chapter 5 – Fight Club

“What’s wrong now,” Angela asked flatly, eyeing her daughter, who poked at her lasagna for fifteen minutes without taking a bite.  “And don’t slouch, Jane.  It’s unattractive,” she scolded.

Jane rolled her eyes and sighed, sitting up straighter.  “Better,” Angela said.  “Now, what’s wrong?”

“Nothing,” she said weakly, turning her attention to her less demanding parent.  “How was your day, Pop?”

“Quiet.  Just like I like it,” Frank Sr. said, taking a sip of red wine.  Jane nodded absently and returned to staring at her food, poking at it occasionally.  For some reason, she was not very hungry.

Angela looked at Frank Junior questioningly, usually able to get some information from him.  He just shrugged and quietly ate his garlic bread.  Angela frowned.

“So Frankie, did you get a date yet for the benefit?”  Angela asked.

Jane sighed, relieved her mother’s attention was finally on someone else.

“Ma, I told you, I’m not going – I’m on duty.  But Jane’s going, right Jane?” Frankie said, smiling unrepentantly at his sister, who was giving him the evil eye.  Though she reluctantly had to appreciate his skill at deflection.

“I would ask your sister the same thing, but I know I’d be disappointed with her answer.  It’s too bad Lieutenant Grant left.  I think you two would have . . . ,” Angela said.

“Ma!  Enough about Grant, all right??” Jane growled.

“I’m just saying,” Angela said with a shrug, taking a sip of her wine.  “So am I to assume you are going alone?”

“Yes, ma.  I’m going alone.  But I’m at Maura’s table so I'll have someone who will actually want to talk to me,” Jane said with a thin smile.

“Because you are such the great dinner table conversationalist,” Angela replied, seeing Jane roll her eyes and continue to absently poke at her food.  “Jane, does the food taste THAT bad?”

“It’s fine,” she said.

“Uh Huh.  That’s why you're licking your plate clean,” she said with a frown.

“Ma, I’m just not that hungry.  Had a big lunch,” Jane said, grateful the topic had shifted from her nonexistent love life.

“What did you have?”  Angela challenged, knowing a lie when she heard it. 

Jane paused.  “Ah . . . sandwich.  A big one,” she said stubbornly, not wanting to admit she hadn’t had lunch.

“You know, you can talk to us if you are having troubles,” Angela said with concern.  “Is it your boss still?” She asked with a sympathetic wince.

Frank Senior and Junior looked at each other, then busily focused on eating their dinner.

Jane snorted dismissively.  “Of course not.  She hadn’t told me I had my head up my ass for over a day – which is pretty good progress, don’t you think?” Jane responded, tearing a piece of garlic bread off and shoving it in her mouth with a fake smile.

“Jane, she just doesn’t know you,” Angela said supportively.  “Maybe you could try and follow Dr. Isle’s example and get to know her,” she offered helpfully.  “Of course, you’d actually have to talk for that to work,” she said sarcastically.

Jane angrily stared at her mother, really not wanting to think about Maura’s dinner with her boss at the moment.  She wanted to ignore it.  And THAT was hard to do with everyone bugging her about it!!! 

“Whaaat?!?” Angela responded defensively.  “You clam up when you’re bothered!  Like now!  And that’s not healthy, Jane.”

“What?  Are you a doctor now, Ma??” Jane countered.

“I just think talking to her will help.  Who knows?  You two might even become friends.”


“Your mother has a point, Jane,” Frank Senior unexpectedly chimed in.

Jane looked at him, startled.  His survival instincts kicking in, Frank Junior remained silent and ate his lasagna, hoping no one asked him his opinion on anything. 

“I do?” Angela softly said with surprise then quickly recovered.  “Of course I do!” she boomed with a big smile and looked at Jane earnestly.  “You two are a lot a like, you know.  You’re both in a male dominated field – It couldn’t have been easy for either of . . . ,” she said.
“Hold that thought, Ma.  I’ve got a call,” Jane interrupted with a thin smile, feeling a welcome buzz at her side.  “Excuse me,” she said, immediately getting up from the table and leaving the unwanted discussion to answer her wonderfully helpful communication device in the next room.  “Rizzoli.”

Angela rolled her eyes in frustration.  It wasn’t the first time Jane had abruptly left when she had something important to tell her.

“Are you able to break free in about ten minutes?”

“What’s happening? Is Maura all right?!?” Jane blurted with concern at the unexpected call from her boss.

“She’s fine.  Marie Largo has been invited to a tournament tonight.”

“Was it the brother?” Jane asked, surprised at the quick response to the bait.  Though, it would make some sense if money was needed so badly as to prompt a murder, she considered.

“No.  It was a woman, who didn’t identify herself, but gave me an address.  A warehouse on the waterfront.”

“Will we have backup?”

“Frost and Korsak will be in a surveillance van and we’ll have uniforms ready to clean up.”

“You work fast,” Jane said with genuine surprise.  Though if she thought about it, the Lieutenant did work fast, Jane reconsidered with a frown, wondering just how much better Maura had gotten to know the Lieutenant this evening.

“Gotta be ready when the opportunity presents itself - you know that.  I’ll be in front of your parents’ house to pick you up in about ten.”

When she hung up, Jane stared at the phone with mixed emotions; one was a surprising sense of relief that Maura’s dinner with her boss had been cut short.  While Maura had gone out on a few dates since they had met, none of them had bothered her so much. 

Well, there was that double date when Maura tried to hook her up with Nurse Jorge, while yoga grabby hands was trying to play tonsil hockey with Maura at their dinner table, which she did not need to see, thank you very much.  But she really couldn’t blame him for wanting Maura; she was exceptionally hot.  And persistent to hook her up, Jane considered with a frown.  Why on Earth had Maura pushed so hard for her to take her date home for sex??  She even went so far as to offering her toiletries, taking away her one excuse for not wanting to.  Who the hell carried extra toiletries around with her on the off chance an emergency leg shaving was needed?!?  

Against her better judgment, she took Jorge home.  Thankfully, the guy was upfront about not wanting to go to work.  Yuck, she thought with a cringe.  Sure she was an independent woman and didn’t need a man to support her, but damn! 

She could never be with someone who did not have some sort of career or calling.  She wanted someone who had similar goals in life . . . someone she could respect and admire.

She had to smirk at how her parents would react if she actually hooked up with Mr. Mom.  Her mother would not have minded him being a nurse; it was close enough to her goal of having Jane marry a doctor or lawyer.   But she would have had a cow if she learned Jorge’s life goal was to be the “wife.”  Well, unless she got grandkids from that arrangement, Jane considered with a frown.  That seemed to be her mother’s main goal now – to be a grandmother.  Catholics are told to go forth and multiply, she considered.  But then, Catholics are told lots of things she didn’t necessarily agree with.  If only Frankie would get himself a girlfriend and distract her mother from nagging her so often….

“Jane, come back to the dinner table; your food’s getting cold,” Angela called out.

“Sorry, Ma, I gotta go.  Save some leftovers for me?” Jane called back, heading out the door without waiting for an answer.


They parked down the street from an old warehouse by the waterfront.  The entrance was lit by a rusted, single-bulb lamp that hung over a door that looked far sturdier than the walls it was attached to.  There were several expensive cars parked along the street, a clear indication something was happening.  Further down the road was the surveillance van.

“Red Sox one, do you copy?  This is Yankees two,” the Lieutenant asked, adjusting the wireless ear bud.

“Yankees two, this is Red Sox one, we copy.”  Korsak’s voice responded.  Jane adjusted her ear bud with a frown. 

“Roger that,” the Lieutenant said.

“Yankees two?  Red Sox one?” Jane asked with a cringe.

“It’s the only joy they’ll get being Red Sox fans this year,” she answered with a confident smirk.  Jane rolled her eyes, not amused.  

Jane face crunched up in consternation when she detected a subtle fragrance in the closed confines of the Aston Martin.  She never noticed the Lieutenant wearing any perfume before.  But Jane knew that delicate scent.

The Lieutenant finished placing her wedding ring on the gold chain around her neck, next to her St. Michael’s medal.  She kissed the ring, a promise she would not just let St. Michael do all of the heavy lifting for her protection, before tucking it and the medal back under her blouse.  “You ready?”

It was… one of Maura’s favorite fragrances, Jane considered as her stomach dropped, thinking of the various modes of transference from one woman to another.  Jesus!!  They had time for that but not dinner!?!


“What?!?” Jane snapped, glaring at the quick operator, then exhaled with irritation, realizing it not wise to lash out at one’s boss.  Especially if the attention she gave Maura was . . . wanted.  That thought caused a tightening around her heart.

“Look, Rizzoli.  If your head is not in the game, I can’t afford to have you with me,” she said, carefully eyeing Jane.

“Lieutenant, I’m good.  I’m good,” Jane repeated, failing to sound convincing; she really wished she hadn’t recognized the scent or continued to think about modes of…. 

“Not tonight, Rizzoli.  Just sit tight, unless you hear that I need some help.  Then I expect you to haul ass to help.  Understood?” she said tersely, some frustration coming through.  Jane frowned but nodded, reluctantly acknowledging she was not focused on what she needed to be.

The Lieutenant glanced around the street as she headed over to the warehouse, leaving Jane alone in the car with the remnants of Maura’s fragrance taunting her.  How the hell was she going to work with the two of them now?  Her best friend and her boss.  Her female boss, she amended as she watched her walk towards the warehouse door in another disgustingly nice outfit. 

What was it about her that made Maura want to date her?  Maura surely wasn’t that superficial to be attracted to the tailored clothes, fancy car, and position of authority, she considered watching the Lieutenant pull out a thin billfold from her breast pocket and hand the guy a bill.  Unable to see what it was, she could only guess that it was another hundred.  It wasn’t the first time she watched her drop a large bill as if it meant nothing, Jane recalled the hundred at the Martial Arts school.

Jane frowned.  Maura had money.  More than she could ever hope of making in a lifetime, she considered.  And people tend to gravitate towards the same social classes, as Maura had explained during a case.  It wasn’t rocket science as to why - it was just easier.  She certainly couldn’t just dive into her own wallet and hand out hundreds, Jane considered with a heavy sigh as she watched her boss enter the warehouse. 

She couldn’t take Maura to nice fancy restaurants with expensive Champagne, unless that was all they had for dinner . . . and shared a glass. 

Maura enjoyed the finer things in life.  Not that Maura thought any less of anyone for not having those things, Jane considered.  But Maura deserved to have the best.  And she deserved to be happy.  Jane frowned, never having expected what would make Maura happy would be … a woman…who was her boss.

“Jane, are you still there?” Frost said.

“Frost, where the hell do you think she is?  Of course she’s still there,” Korsak said impatiently, glaring at the young man.

“Yes I’m here and can still hear you,” Jane said with exasperation.

“Get your fucking hand off me or I’ll break it,” the Lieutenant snapped.

“That doesn’t sound good,” Korsak said unnecessarily.

“Come on honey, don’t be that way,” a male voice said.  “You came alone – you don’t have to stay alone.”

“I should go in,” Jane said anxiously, placing her hand on the door handle, then paused with dread.  How would she get in, she wondered, knowing all she had was twenty-three dollars and change on her.  Damn it, she thought with guilt, knowing if she had just focused on the task at hand, the Lieutenant wouldn’t be alone.  She pulled out her weapon, nervously considering storming the place…until she heard a sickening crack.

“AAAAAGH!  Fuck!  You crazy bitch!!  You broke my hand!!!”

“Sounds like she has it covered,” Korsak responded with a smirk.

“I did warn you, asshole.”

“Oh yes she did!” Frost snorted with amusement.

“Trouble here?” a female voice said smoothly, apparently not overly concerned.

“Not for me,” the Lieutenant said cockily. 

Hearing Korsak and Frost snicker, Jane rolled her eyes; they were enjoying this entirely too much.

“Thomas, go have that looked at.”

“But she broke my fucking…!”

“Thomas.  Go.”

“I bet she wears the pants in the family,” Korsak offered with a smirk.

Jane just shook her head.

“Great place you’re running here,” the Lieutenant said flatly.

“You’re leaving?” the woman said with surprise.

“Playing hard to get . . . nice,” Korsak said approvingly.

Jane sighed, thinking the Lieutenant didn"t seem the type who would ever play hard to get.  The thought made her more depressed.

“You know, I bet the Lieutenant is having trouble concentrating with you too yapping so much!” Jane snapped.

“Got up on the wrong side of the bed, did we, Rizzoli?” Korsak responded.

“Life’s too short to be around scum like that.”

“Well, we do get all types.  And a successful, attractive woman should be used to unwanted attention from time to time.”

“Is that why you took up self-defense and became an instructor?” the Lieutenant asked smoothly.

“That must be the female instructor we saw at the dojo earlier!” Jane said with interest, thankful there was something to do besides listening to her current and former partner’s commentary.  “She had curly blond hair and was about five feet, six inches, with green eyes.”

“Something like that.”

“Got it.  Frost is looking on-line for the school now to see if we can ID her,” Korsak said as Barry swiftly Googled.

“Was she pretty?” Frost asked.

“You know, if you leave now, you’ll miss the main event.  I think it will be worth your while.”

“What the hell does that have to do with anything?” Jane snapped defensively.  Why was he asking her about her opinion on a woman’s beauty?  Why would he think she would even have one?!?

“How so?  Neanderthals like Thomas slugging it out in a cage?  Not exactly what I want to see,” the Lieutenant responded, unimpressed.

“Well, there are two blond women instructors and one is pretty, the other…not so much,” Korsak explained.

“I am certain you will not be disappointed with the main fight.”

“Oh,” Jane said with a weary sigh, rubbing her eyes.  She hated to admit she was out of sorts.  But she was.  Big time.  “Very pretty.”

“Really?  Who are the fighters?”

“Two local black belts who have something to prove.”

“And a purse to win?”

“That too,” the woman laughed.

“Very pretty?  You think so??  I really don’t see it,” Frost offered. 

“No.  Jane’s right.  She’s very pretty.”

“Oh for God’s sake!  Do you two idiots have a name yet??”  Jane blurted.

“No need to be rude – I was agreeing with you,” Korsak said defensively.  “What’s with you tonight, Rizzoli??”

“Julia Fontaine,” Frost answered, ignoring Jane’s mood.  “I’m sorry, but she's not all that.”

“I never said….ugh,” Jane said and gave up.  It was like arguing with her mother.

“Who’s your friend, Julia?” Another female voice sounded.

“She’s got more company,” Frost offered unnecessarily.

“This is Marie Largo, darling.  I’m hoping to convince her to stay.”

“J…JANE!  I can’t believe you.  Are you nuts?!?” Frost sputtered.

“But the main event hasn’t even started.” 

“What‘d she do?” Korsak quickly asked, confused by the younger man’s outburst.

“Thomas was an ass towards her.”

Jane winced, thankful they were not in the same vehicle.

“Nothing I want to discuss now, isn’t that right…JANE?!?” Frost spat.

“Good idea, Frost,” Jane said rolling her eyes.

“I’m so sorry, Ms. Largo.  I will speak to him.”

“We’ll be discussing it later, though,” Frost said with irritation.

“Hon, I think Ms. Largo got her point across quite effectively.  She broke his hand,” Julia said with amusement.

“Yeah, Yankees Two, let’s try to focus on the task at hand,” Korsak said, still not sure of the reason for Frost’s tangent, but knew they had a job to do.

“I see.  Well, I wish I could say he hasn’t deserved it before now,” the new woman said ruefully.  “He has a habit of underestimating the women he pursues and overestimating his magnetism.  Again, my apologies.”

“Bite me, Red Sox One,” Jane said testily.

“Water under the bridge.  You two run this . . . event?”

“Well, she’s the brains behind it and I’m a simple hostess.”

“Darling, you are far . . . from a simple . . . hostess,” the redhead said silkily. 

“You know, that sounds an awful lot like Johnston’s sister, Gwyneth,” Frost said with surprise. 

“Hey, you’re right,” Korsak agreed with even more surprise.

“It happens,” Frost said flatly, glaring at him as they heard a kissing sound, followed by a slight hum of appreciation.

“Well don’t they sound friendly,” Korsak noted with a smirk.

Jane dropped her head into her hands.  Great.  The leading suspects are . . . lesbians.

“I don’t suppose I could get a bit more information about the fighters?  I’m not in the habit of just randomly placing bets on unknowns.”

“I think Julia can help you out there.  I need to get ready to introduce the fighters.”


Jane heard a loud, enthusiastic crowd, clapping and whistling as the event was starting.

“Red Sox One, Rizzoli . . . show time,” the Lieutenant said.

“This is it!” Frost said with excitement, taking his headset off.  When he and Korsak got out of the van, they saw Jane already headed towards the warehouse door as five patrol cars and a prisoner transport van pulled into the street.

“Jesus,” Jane said with amazement at the strong police presence the Lieutenant brought to bear so quickly, not that she minded when she knocked at the door and the large man opened up.

“You’re too late.  Fight’s started,” he growled, crossing his arms over his broad chest with no intention of letting her in.

“Actually, I’m just in time,” she said flashing her badge and a smile as several comforting uniforms came up behind her in a wall of black.  “Step back slo . . . ,” she instructed as the doorman’s eyes widened and he quickly stepped back to reach for something behind the door.

“Freeze, Police!”  Jane snapped, grabbing for her weapon as he pressed a button that set off a loud alarm and frenzy within the building.  As she withdrew her sidearm, the behemoth charged at her . . . with a knife, perversely satisfied to see her eyes widen in alarm.

Chapter 6 – Worse for Wear


“Rizzoli?  Rizzoli!”

Reds and blues are such pretty colors.  Comforting, even when flashing.  Black is comforting too . . . is black a color, or an absence of color?

Maura would know.  Maura knows practically everything, like how to dress.  Man, does she know how to dress.

Maura would look good in reds, blues, greens, yellows or . . . hell, in any color… or absence of color.  Like that little black dress she has, which hugs her amazing … assets.  But she looks good in anything - even in my favorite worn out Red Sox jersey.  She looked damn fine in my Patriots jersey too, but I lost that one.  I must have lost it at the Soap and Suds Laundromat when my dryer was on the fritz.  I might still have it if I had taken Ma up on her offer but GOD she can be so annoying.  I know she would have turned the visit to a long discussion on how nice it would be for me to be doing laundry for someone I love…yadda yadda.

I’m so glad Maura didn’t mind borrowing those shirts; they were definitely not those expensive silk pajamas that she loves.  But I really didn’t want her to go home, not even with a promise of immediately returning after collecting her stuff.  Being a Hoyt victim, again, sucked.  But she made those nights bearable, better than bearable.  I almost forgot why she was there when she came out of the bathroom in my old jersey.  She looked good.  So.  Damn.  Good. 

Maura would be horrified that the Red Sox jersey hadn’t been washed since that night.  But it smells like her.  God, she smells good too.  So.  Damn.  Good.  Not because of expensive perfume, though when she does wear it she always wears such nice fragrances.  But Maura has good taste…in everything.  She wouldn’t be caught dead in that Mary Avon stuff that Ma got me for Christmas one year.  Who knew you could get perfume by the gallon?  But it stank, regardless of the bulk savings or impressive ability to dissolve the grime off the bathroom tile, which Pop tipped me off to.  You’d think your own mother would know you have a sensitive nose. 

Sensitive enough to detect traces of Maura’s perfume on the Lieutenant…

Oh, Maura.

Why her??

“Gah!” Jane blurted with a cringe, abruptly rolling her throbbing head away from the smelling salts beneath her nose, which prompted more pain.  Not one to try and repeat something that caused her pain, she weakly attempted to push away the paramedic’s hand, which kept pushing that awful stinky thing under her nose. 

“Detective Rizzoli?” the paramedic asked, finally taking the smelling salts away and pointing her penlight into Jane’s eyes.

Jane squinted at the painful brightness.  “Eh . . . stop!” she demanded groggily, trying to swat the light away but her coordination was too sluggish to succeed.

“Rizzoli, don’t fight her!  She’s here to help,” the Lieutenant blurted as they hauled Rizzoli onto the gurney.

“You have a concussion and a knife wound in your side.  We’re taking you to the hospital,” the paramedic said, glancing to the Lieutenant, thankful for her help.

“Wha?  What?” Jane said, trying to sit up from the gurney but felt a firm hand on her shoulder, minimizing the pain in her side from the wound.

“Jesus, Rizzoli.  You’re bleeding all over the place - will yah just let the paramedic do her damn job?” the Lieutenant said with frustration. 

Jane blinked at her boss and nodded slightly before they lifted her gurney into the back of the ambulance.  

Reds and blues are such pretty colors.  Comforting even when flashing….


Korsak and Frost quietly chatted as they sat on plastic chairs, sipping bad hospital coffee.  The conversation stopped when they heard the rapid click-clack of designer shoes.  They looked up to find the medical examiner arriving. 

“Is she all right?” Maura anxiously blurted as she joined them.  Both men stood.

“Jane got a concussion and a knife wound.  They’re finished sewing her up and are taking x-rays now,” Korsak reported.

“What happened??” she asked, looking between both men.

“She was run over by a tank,” Frost said with a cringe, shaking his head.

Maura eyed him with confusion, not having heard of any plans that involved the military.  “A big doorman,” Vince explained, glaring at Frost.

“It took two tasers to finally take him down.  The guy was high as a kite,” Barry offered, causing Maura to frown as she thought of Jane confronting someone like that. 

The three turned towards the Lieutenant, who walked towards them with a tense look on her face.

“The doctor wants to keep her overnight for observation because of the concussion,” the Lieutenant announced as she joined them.

“What about the knife wound?” Maura said tightly, noticing the slight, guilty wince cross the Lieutenant’s face. 

“The cut was severe enough to require twenty three stitches,” the Lieutenant offered, not one to mince words.  Frost cringed as Korsak frowned.  Maura remained neutral and waited for more information. “But no organs were injured.”

“More scars,” Maura said sadly but thankful it wasn’t worse.

“Rizzoli is not very happy about staying,” the Lieutenant said wearily.

“I’ll bet,” Korsak said with a snort.  Frost just nodded.

“Can you please try to convince her she shouldn’t leave until the doctor thinks it’s ok?” the Lieutenant asked Maura hopefully.

“I’ll try, but Jane can be stubborn,” Maura noted, causing Korsak and Frost to look at each other at the gross understatement. 

“Rizzoli’s family should be here shortly, can you keep an eye out while we go to see her?” the Lieutenant asked the men.

“I don’t know which is worse, trying to convince Jane to stay in a hospital or trying to convince Mrs. Rizzoli to stay calm,” Korsak said, partially joking.

“They are both formidable women,” Maura allowed before heading towards Jane’s room.


“Jane!” Maura gasped at the sight before her.  Jane quickly glanced up, stopping mid-shuffle.  She was heading towards the closet, her hand at the back of her hospital gown, keeping it together.  “What are you doing out of bed!!”

Jane quickly recovered from her surprise and noted the Lieutenant standing just behind Maura, looking very much like a nice couple, in their expensive, tailored outfits.  “My clothes.  I’m looking for my clothes,” Jane snarled.  “Something that can cover my goddamn ass!”

“If you stayed in bed, you wouldn’t have to worry about your . . . rear not being adequately covered,” Maura said with a mix of concern and irritation as she and the Lieutenant approached her.  Maura reached out to help Jane back to the bed. 

“No,” Jane said, pushing her hand away.

The action made Maura wince at the clear rejection.

“I’m gathering my clothes and getting out of here,” Jane said tightly, trying not to show her self-inflicted discomfort.

“You need to rest, Jane,” Maura argued.  “You just got twenty three stitches!  Not to mention you hit your head, which is quite evident at the moment!!!”

“I’ll rest at home.  I should have tomorrow off.  Right, Lieutenant?”  Jane asked with irritation. 

”You take as much time as you need, Rizzoli,” the Lieutenant said sincerely, getting Jane to nod curtly.  After hearing Dr. Isles’ endorsement, she hadn’t expected Rizzoli to be so resistant to staying.  But she should have known; it was what she would have wanted – to just go home after a bad day.  Home, she considered, her thumb absently fingering her wedding band.  She drew comfort from the act as her thoughts drifted to the loving embraces and kisses that could make her forget the bad and give her strength to continue the good fight.

“Jane, please.  It is prudent for you to let the hospital keep an eye on you for at least the night in case there are any compl….” Maura tried to reason.

“Why are you not listening to me?!?”  Jane interrupted with frustration.  “I am going home – either in my clothes or this goddamn gown!”  Jane hissed and headed towards the closet, letting the back of it open up and her rear hang out in sheer defiance.

Maura frowned at the injuries on her friend’s back and rear, which were going to become ugly bruises and cause discomfort.  “Jane,” Maura tried again as Jane found her jeans and bloody and torn shirt in the closet.

“Ah Ha!” She said in triumph before looking around worriedly as she remembered something very important.  “Shit!  My gun!” Jane blurted with growing panic, frantically sifting through the few articles of clothing that clearly did not contain her weapon. “Goddamnit, where the hell is my gun?” Jane anxiously looked at the Lieutenant.

“I’ve got it, Rizzoli.  No shots fired.  No shrinks or lost weapons reports needed,” she said, lifting her hands in an appeasing manner.  “You’ll get it back when you are medically cleared - you might get that faster if you stayed overnight,” she suggested, hoping her officer would stop being so stubborn, even if she understood why.

Jane’s eyes immediately focused on the unexpected flicker of gold on her left hand.  Her gaze dropped to the floor as she battled to reign in a dangerous mix of emotions that raged within her. 


Korsak and Frost cringed, hearing them before they saw them.

“Where’s my baby!” Mrs. Rizzoli called out in a panic, looking around and poking her head in patients’ rooms.

“Angela, quiet,” the Rizzoli patriarch hissed softly, glancing around with embarrassment, noting the curious looks from staff and patients.  “We’re in a hospital, not Fenway,” he added.

“Exactly!  We are in a hospital - where my baby is!” she said with exasperation at the obvious.  “Jane?  Janie??” she called out, looking into each room as she passed.

“MA!”  Frankie blurted and grabbed her arm to pull her back from another room.  “She’s in room 304, Ma,” he said, pointing down the hall.  “And the Lieutenant said she had a concussion, loud sounds aren’t good for that,” Frankie offered, slowing her march down the hallway.  Angela finally stopped and eyed her youngest.

“I need to see her, Frankie.  You’d know that if you had children of your own,” she said authoritatively with a meaningful glare, then continued her search. 

Receiving Frankie’s look of frustration, Frank Senior shrugged.


“Maura,” Jane said softly, getting Maura’s hopeful gaze.  “Please leave.”

“Jane?” Maura weakly said with surprise, hurt by the dismissal.

“I need to talk to the Lieutenant.”

Maura blinked then looked at the Lieutenant, who shrugged and nodded slightly.  Taking a frustrated breath, Maura left the room shaking her head.


“Detective Korsak!” Angela called out with relief as she turned the corner of the hallway.  Seeing Jane’s former partner, she marched directly at him with the male Rizzolis in tow.

“Oh boy,” Frost whispered under his breath, bracing for the emotional onslaught.

“Dr. Isles!” Detective Korsak called out with great relief as she emerged from Jane’s room.  He quickly went to her side and shepherded her to Jane’s mother.

“How’s my baby?” Angela asked worriedly, looking between all of Jane’s workmates.

Maura took a second to collect her thoughts.  “Ah, she . . . suffered a concussion and a stab wound in her right side that required twenty three stitches,” she said. 

Angela gasped, covering her mouth.   Frank Senior winced and put a comforting hand on his wife’s shoulder.

“She’s up and arguing about going home,” Maura said disapprovingly.  “The doctor has recommended she stay the night for observation but she doesn’t seem to appreciate the prudence in having trained medical personnel keep an eye on her,” Maura said firmly, hoping to enlist an ally and have Angela talk some sense into her stubborn daughter.  Instead, Angela smiled broadly and let out a laugh.

“She can’t be that bad if she is complaining about the hospital and wanting to go home,” she looked at Frank Senior, who smiled back warmly with a nod.  “Let’s go see our baby,” she said, grabbing his hand and pulling him towards the hospital room door.


The first thing Angela noticed when she entered the room was the bed was empty.  The momentary panic was replaced by a cringe when she heard someone retching. 

“Ah man,” Frankie mumbled with a frown.  “I gotta . . . check something,” he said to his father and bolted. 

Frank Senior shook his head with a sigh, knowing his son didn’t do well around people who were throwing up.  As a plumber, he had seen his share of gross and disgusting things on the job and knew Frankie wasn’t cut out for Rizzoli and Sons.  But he always wondered how it was his son could manage to deal with blood and dead bodies but not a little pungent stomach content or clogged excrement??

“Jane?” Angela called out, hearing another bout of hurling.

“She’s in here,” the Lieutenant called out, emerging from the bathroom.  She left a wide berth for the Rizzolis to go in to check on their daughter, who was on the floor huddled over the commode.

“Janie, honey?  Do you need the doctor?” Angela said, pulling Jane’s hair back and stroking the side of her face.  Frank Senior remained silent, watching his daughter from the door.

“No!”  Jane said, out of breath at the recent exertion.  

“What happened to you?” Maura asked with alarm, noticing a trickle of blood from the Lieutenant’s nose.  Frank Senior glanced back and watched Maura raise the brunette’s chin to inspect the injury.   

“Oh, heh,” the Lieutenant laughed awkwardly, backing away as she gingerly touched below her nose and found the blood. “Got in the way,” she explained with a weak shrug, vaguely motioning to the bathroom where Angela hovered over her daughter before grabbing a tissue by the bed.

“Are you done?  Do you want to get up now?” Angela asked her daughter, getting a nod.  She promptly helped Jane stand.

Maura noticed Jane’s uneasy glance at her boss, who quickly dabbed away the blood.  She looked curiously between the two women, who both looked uncomfortable.  Maura grew more concerned when she noticed Jane wouldn’t meet her eyes.

“All that throwing up can’t be good for your side,” the Lieutenant said awkwardly, also unable to meet Maura’s curious gaze. “I’ll go get the doctor,” the Lieutenant said and quickly left the room.

“I’ve got to get out of here,” Jane said, looking at her mother pointedly.  “Please, Ma.”

Angela smiled like she was given a big gift.  Maura frowned.

“Your father and I will take you home, Janie,” she quickly said.  “You can stay in your old room for a few days while you heal.  How does that sound?”

“Perfect,” Jane said without argument, shocking Maura, who would have thought Jane would vehemently argue that she didn’t need anyone to look after her. 

“You should wait for the Doctor first,” Maura said firmly and left the room to help expedite finding one.


“Jane Rizzoli needs to see the doctor.  Her stitches may be pulled and she is determined to leave this evening,” the Lieutenant reported to the nurse at the nurses’ station.  She rolled her eyes, used to uncooperative and antsy patients.  Typical police officers, she considered, certain none of them knew how to sit still and just heal. 

“I think Dr. Burke just left.  I’ll send in a nurse to check in on her stitches while we hunt him down,” the desk nurse said, picking up the phone.

“Thanks,” she said and turned to find Maura right behind her.

“What happened in the room between you two?” Maura asked, crossing her arms over her chest.

“Nothing to concern yourself with, Maura.  And if you ask Jane, she’ll say the same thing,” she said plainly without further elaboration.

Maura looked at her incredulously.  “Really??  I find it unlikely your injury was a result of just happening to be “in the way” as she rushed to throw up.  Did she hit you?”

“Now why would she do that, Maura?”  the brunette asked pointedly, looking into Maura’s eyes.

“I don’t know!” she blurted in great frustration.  This frustration was new to the medical examiner, who never had a best friend to worry about before.  And from the increase in surprisingly trivial arguments and her distant behavior, which had resulted a reduction in their time spent together off-hours, she couldn’t help but think Jane was slipping away from her.  And that thought terrified her.

“If Jane is suspected of hitting her superior officer, even if she was not thinking right because of a head injury, there would be a lot of unwanted attention and potentially significant career ramifications…and at the very least an administrative mess to clean up.  So you might want to think real hard about that before you go making accusations, Doctor.”

Maura blinked, looking at the Lieutenant, realizing the severity of the suspected act.  She was surprised by the Lieutenant’s silence and lack of anger towards Jane, which implied that she was not actually blaming Jane for acting so rashly.  That thought brought new concerns.

“Do you suspect her head injury is causing her to behave oddly?”  Maura said with alarm.

The Lieutenant chuckled wearily, confusing Maura.  “Jane’s odd behavior started well before this evening, Maura.”  She looked at Maura with a slight smile and offered gently:  “I think you know that.”

Maura frowned, knowing what the Lieutenant was saying was right, but there were still several puzzle pieces swirling around her, which she could not seem to fit together for a clear picture on what was really going on.  It was most annoying.  As she took a breath to ask the Lieutenant, who seemed to have already pieced this puzzle together, to elaborate, a nurse came up to the two. 

“So, we have a detective who tore up our fine stitch work?” the nurse said flatly, eyeing the two.

“Maybe.  We would appreciate you checking,” the Lieutenant said apologetically.


As Maura and the Lieutenant returned with the nurse, they saw the uneasy looks on Frost and Korsak.  Maura quickly checked Jane’s room and found it was empty.  When she turned to the detectives for an explanation, their gazes dropped guiltily.  The Lieutenant sighed, not that surprised.

The nurse shook her head.  “And they say we are lousy patients,” she blurted, eyeing the four representatives from the police department with disapproval, before returning to her better-behaved patients.


“There you go, Janie,” Angela said, happily fluffing her daughter’s pillow on her bed and pulling down the pink covers.  Even though she thought the room looked much better with the old pink canopy bed, they had it removed when their recent police academy graduate Jane staunchly refused to ever return home, much less sleep in her old room, with a pink canopy bed still on the premises. 

Angela knew her daughter often bore the brunt of stupid jokes and comments but chauvinist jerks were everywhere, not just the police department.  And how were her co-workers ever going to know she still had her pink canopy bed at her parent’s house??  The things you do for your children, she considered wearily as she turned towards Jane, who smiled weakly, looking worse for the wear.  Her top was ripped and bloody from her encounter with that mammoth of a man.

“Come on, let’s get into your PJs, OK?” Angela said gently, taking charge like she had ever since Jane begged her to get her out of the hospital.  Janie had always been so independent.  Growing up she rarely asked her for anything.  And as an adult, never, Angela considered unhappily.  Not when her beautiful hands were horribly injured and scarred, or even when that serial killer was after her again!  So she damn well wasn’t going to let the opportunity pass her by when her daughter finally asked her for something she could actually give.  So they whisked her away and took her right home, Angela thought proudly, not distracted by Korsak or Frost, who practically pleaded with them to wait for the Lieutenant and Maura to return. 

After receiving a nod, she carefully helped her daughter put her pajamas on, mindful of her bandaged side.  She tried not to wince too much at the scrapes and bruises marring her baby’s body. 

Finally clad in her PJs, Jane quietly sat on the edge of her bed, looking lost.  A look Angela hadn’t seen before, not even after a very young Jane had been devastated to find out their neighbors, the Foglios, had abruptly moved.  Jane never had the chance to say goodbye to her best friend Annette or her brother Mikey.  She didn’t have the heart to tell her daughter that their father Tony, who everyone thought a really great guy, especially the kids, had one too many people enamored with him.  His wife, Maria, caught him cheating with Teresa Maripola, from the deli, which prompted Maria to suddenly pack up and take off with her kids.  Angela really couldn’t blame the poor woman . . . even though the Foglios got a great discount on cold cuts.  But it broke Jane’s heart that her best friend suddenly disappeared.

She looked at her daughter, almost wishing Jane would argue with her about her mothering or . . . anything.

“Do you need any more aspirin?” she asked her daughter, who shook her head as tears filled her eyes.  “Are you sure, Janie?  You don’t look so good,” Angela said worriedly, caressing her child’s face.  Jane laughed weakly and wiped her eyes.

“Sorry, Ma.  I’m just . . . a mess,” Jane said wearily with a forced laugh, knowing calling herself a mess was an understatement.  She had been too distracted about Maura’s goddamn perfume, giving her boss no confidence that she actually could do her damn job.  Then she let a behemoth doorman run her over, leaving her with a little gift of twenty-three stitches and very compelling evidence that she was indeed incapable of doing her job.  And then, after one final glorious act, she left no doubt that she was a total fuck-up and had probably lost her job.

“Well it’s no wonder,” Angela said sympathetically.  “You were run over by a big jerk with a knife!  But Detective Korsak said they got him, and the rest of that bad bunch you were after,” she said with encouragement, hoping to bring her daughter some good news.

“You’re not going to tell me how much of a fuck-up I am because I keep getting hurt?” Jane readily offered, taunting her mother with the familiar argument.

“Jane, language!” Angela scolded.

“Come on, Ma.  You’re always telling me I shouldn’t be a cop.  Maybe you’re right.  Maybe I have finally proven to my boss what you knew all along,” Jane weakly said, staring blankly at the carpet.

Angela blinked at her daughter, startled by the comment and defeated tone.  After a few sputtering, false starts to respond, she slowly took one of her daughter’s scarred hands with a wince.  Jane’s head dropped lower, making Angela bite her lip.

“You know, all I’ve ever wanted . . . was for you to be happy,” Angela said cautiously, squeezing her hand.  Jane nodded weakly.

“And I was happy being a cop, Ma,” Jane said softly.  “I never wanted to be anything else,” she said with a forced smile and took an uneasy breath. 

“I know,” she said with a long sigh.  “But I’m your mother, and I don’t like you being hurt, so sue me,” Angela said unapologetically.

“There’s a thought.  Maybe I should become a lawyer,” Jane joked with a hollow laugh.  “After tonight, I think I’m going to have to reconsider my career choices.”

“What??  Just because you got injured again?” Angela said, prompting only a dejected sigh from her daughter.  “I’m serious, Jane.  Why would they want to get rid of you?  You’re their best homicide detective!!” Angela said, offended by the idea.

“You’re my mom, you have to say that,” Jane said flatly.

“You don’t get the best solve rate in the department for being an idiot, do you?” Angela countered.

“You know my solve rate??” Jane said with great surprise.

“What kind of nosey mother would I be if I didn’t know that??” Angela said indignantly.

Jane smiled crookedly, amazed by how much her mother’s surprising, albeit odd, support of her meant.  One small, nagging weight on her heart lifted, releasing a few more fresh tears.  Jane growled in frustration, once again wiping away annoying tears.

You need to get some sleep, young lady,” Angela announced, standing up and placing a lingering kiss on her daughter’s crown, as she had done so many times when she was a child.  “We all do,” she added with a small smile and headed to the door.

“Yeah,” Jane said tiredly, carefully getting under her covers.  “Ma?”

Angela looked at her curiously. 

“Thanks,” Jane said sincerely, making her mother smile.

“You and your brothers are the best gifts Frank and I ever got,” Angela said earnestly, then frowned slightly.  “I just wish you guys would work harder on getting some gifts of your own for me to dote on,” she said, shaking her head as she left.

Jane blinked, staring at the now empty doorframe, before softly chuckling and gingerly laying back.  Her smile faded knowing her mother was going to be disappointed that the life she had all mapped out for her wasn’t going to happen.

She shut her eyes and tried to sleep, but thoughts of the evening’s epic failures kept repeating in her head in agonizing detail…well, except for the period she lost consciousness.  Some loss of consciousness now would be nice, she considered with a frown.

The only thing that she could take any consolation in was, oddly, when her boss yelled at her.  “For God’s Sake, Rizzoli!  She knows I’m married.  And I take my goddamn vows seriously, you idiot!!” 


Maura finished her wine and stared at her cell phone on the kitchen counter, debating whether to call Jane.  She wanted to hear Jane’s voice.  She really wanted to check on Jane’s stitches.  And she really, really wanted to just hug her ever since she had heard Jane had been hurt. 

But Jane had made it clear she didn’t want her help.

With a troubled sigh, she went to the sink and cleaned her empty glass.  Task complete, she headed towards her bedroom with every expectation sleep would be elusive.  Had she done something to make Jane more distant? 

She frowned, reluctantly acknowledging she had been a little short with Jane on several occasions as of late, usually resulting from a poorly worded comment and her own insecurities, but Jane never mentioned it.  And Jane wasn’t one to hold back her opinions, or complaints, about other people’s behavior.

She began to unbutton her dress as she walked into her large closet.  Slipping off her shoes, she carefully placed them in their assigned place on the shoe rack, ordered by color and heel size, among, what Jane would probably declare to be an obscene number of shoes.  Slipping out of her dress, she meticulously hung it, ensuring no unseemly wrinkles would result, even though she would be taking it to the cleaners along with the collection of other outfits she hung in that section of the closet.  Next came her bra, which she took off and placed in the hamper next to her closet dresser.  She pulled open the top drawer and smiled, seeing her favorite sleepwear crisply folded on top of her silk pajamas.

Pulling it up by the shoulders, the crisply laundered Patriots jersey unfolded, showing the number twelve.  The quarterback Tom Brady’s number, Maura had learned.  But she believed the position of “safety” would be more metaphorically appropriate for Jane, considering her job.  Though, if one were to choose a Jersey symbolic of Jane’s physique, Maura would have to choose a number like eighty-eight, for the “tight end” position.

While clearly several sizes too large and made from a polyester blend, the Jersey was surprisingly comfortable.  She absently caressed the material, recalling the first time she wore it.  She had mentioned her surprise at the amazing number of wrinkles it had for being freshly laundered.  Jane had jokingly asked her if she had never forgotten to take her clothes out of the dryer and always had wrinkle-free sleepwear.  When she seriously answered “no and, until now, yes,” Jane stared at her a moment, then frowned, apologizing she didn’t have anything better.  Jane even went so far as to tell her that she understood if she wanted to go home to get her stuff. 

Jane had respected what was important to her, however silly it may have seemed to anyone else.  Maura was deeply touched that Jane was willing to fight her genuine fear that night, rather than ask her to go against her fastidious nature.  There was no way she would have left Jane because of wrinkled clothing.  When Jane had asked her to stay, she felt happy, so happy that she could fulfill Jane’s need for companionship.  No one had ever needed her like that before.  Maura was well aware that Jane, the accomplished, beautiful woman, could have had any companion she wanted.  Yet for those few nights, Jane chose the socially awkward Dr. Maura Isles.  It felt…amazing. 

Even with wrinkled sleepwear.

Now, it seemed that Jane no longer wanted her help.  Tears welled up as Maura struggled to understand what had changed and why.  She glanced to the clock on the nightstand and sighed, wiping her tears, knowing she had to at least try and get some sleep.  After mechanically climbing into bed, she fidgeted a moment as she settled in to become more comfortable.  After a few seconds, she finally gave up, knowing she wasn’t going to be completely comfortable.  

She sighed heavily and stared at her ceiling.


At lunch, Korsak returned to his desk with a large coffee and chocolate-chip muffin as Maura came into the bullpen.  He noticed her glance linger at Jane’s empty desk before she looked between the two men.

“Have you heard how Jane’s doing today?” Maura asked them with a forced smile.

“She hasn’t called you?” Korsak asked with surprise.  Maura looked at him uneasily, shaking her head no with a polite smile before her eyes dropped, then focused on Barry.  Korsak frowned, seeing the brief flash of hurt she was unable to hide.

“She texted me that she had a brunch of blueberry pancakes with butter and maple syrup, fresh sausage links from the butcher, orange juice, and fresh brewed Starbuck’s house blend,” Frost said with a smirk.

Korsak chuckled.  “Ten bucks says we see her back at work tomorrow.”

“Having proper rest is important for the body to heal itself,” Maura noted with disapproval, hoping Jane would not cut short her sick leave. 

Frost eyed Korsak and sat back in his chair, holding his hands out.  “Home cooking, hovering.  Home cooking, hovering,” Frost repeated, moving his hands as if weighing the options.  “No deal.  She also mentioned her mother talking about the all the eligible young men she should be dating.”

That certainly was not conducive to rest, Maura considered with a frown, knowing how annoyed Jane got when her mother nagged her about dating and marriage.  She honestly didn’t know why her mother was so worried.  Jane was an exceptionally beautiful woman, who had a keen mind that made her even more desirable.

“Cheater,” Korsak blurted with a frown, getting Barry to smile broadly.

“Barry?  You’ll keep me informed if you hear anything more?” Maura asked uncomfortably.

“Sure thing, Doc.  You’ll be one of the first to know if I get a text on her dinner menu,” he said dryly.

“Thank you.  Nutrition is also important in the healing process,” she said sincerely with another polite smile before leaving.

Frost silently looked at Korsak, who just sighed and shook his head.  With a surprising bleep from his computer, Frost curiously tapped his keyboard to call up the source.  “Oh…,” Frost slowly exhaled with alarm.  “…shit.”

Korsak looked at him curiously.  “Now you look like you need a sick day.  What’s going on?”

Barry looked at Vince, then back at his screen.   “Oh . . . shit.”

“For God’s sake, either spit it out or keep quiet,” Vince said impatiently at Frost’s annoying agitation.

“I uh, just got the results back on my database search.”

“Congratulations,” Korsak said sarcastically, rolling his eyes.

“No . . . you don’t understand.  It was for Marie Largo,” Frost said whispering the name with emphasis, then returned his worried gaze to the screen.

“The Lieutenant’s undercover name?” Vince asked.  “She’s going to be pissed if she knows you’ve been investigating her.”

“Shhh!!” Frost said nervously, looking around the bullpen to make sure no one was listening.  “I didn’t know that was who Jane had me investigating!  Not until the stakeout at the fight club,” he hissed defensively. 

“So delete the damn file.  None the wiser,” Korsak said in a hushed, terse tone, noting Frost cringe with worry.  “What’s the big deal?” he said with irritation.

Frost rubbed his face and moaned “I cracked into the FBI’s files to get the info.”

“Jesus, Frost.  Why would you do that?!?” 

“I found the references to Marie Largo were all inaccessible.  I made an algorithm to work in the background to get in.  When I found out on the stakeout that was the Lieutenant’s alias, I was going to cancel it but forgot . . . with everything,” he said vaguely with a wince, clearly recalling Jane getting run over by the human Mack truck.  “And I got a hit.”

Korsak sighed with irritation.  “It’s not that unusual a name.  Why can’t you still just delete it?” Korsak said, looking at him pointedly.

Frost looked alarmed and shook his head.  “No….”

“Wh…Oh Christ!  The FBI knows you got in?” Korsak blurted, looking around the bullpen nervously as if the feds might be closing in on them now.

“I . . . think I cleaned up my tracks,” Frost said, looking at his screen thoughtfully. 

“Then just delete the damn file!” Korsak hissed at the dense young detective.

“I can’t.  Look at what I found,” he said anxiously, motioning to his screen.

Korsak sighed and got up from his desk.  He glanced around before looking at the younger detective’s screen closely.  Seeing the picture of their new lieutenant next to the name Marie Largo and a long list of crimes he hissed “Oh . . . shit.”

“Arms dealing, murder, drugs” Frost quietly rattled off, rubbing his temples.  “They have listed her as deceased,” Frost said gravely, glancing up at Korsak.

“This . . . doesn’t make sense.  She must have been working with the FBI . . . on something.”

“But what if she wasn’t, and they now think she’s deceased??  They’re not going to be wasting any time looking for a dead woman,” he said with concern.

“Frost!  Why the hell would she want to be surrounded by cops…hell, why would she want to be one?” Korsak said, glancing towards the Lieutenant’s office.

“Hidden in plain view?  Able to stay a few steps ahead of the law with unquestioned access to their information?”  Frost offered, eyeing Korsak, who was digesting the troubling information.  “Jane did have a gut feeling that something was off about her,” Barry added, glancing towards the Lieutenant’s office.

“And Rizzoli likes to run just after eating, too,” Korsak replied dismissively.  “It still doesn’t make any sense.”

“Ok, but what are we going to do now?”

“Absolutely nothing,” Korsak said firmly. 


“What did you have in mind, rushing in and arresting her?”

Frost frowned.  “What if this is legitimate?”

“What if it’s not??  The Lieutenant doesn’t need that rap sheet to make me worry about what she’ll do to us if she finds out her detectives have been accessing restricted documents to poke around in her business!” he hissed, making Frost wince, both recalling the sound over the coms when the Lieutenant broke that guy’s hand.  “And you hacked into the FBI’s data.  That’s not exactly something the feds appreciate either!”

Knowing he was in hot water if he was wrong, Frost glanced at the disturbing data on his screen again, unable to let it go.  “You can’t be suggesting we ignore this.”

“I never said that.”

Chapter 7 – Promising Leads


That night, after a day of rest and doting by her mother, Jane found she couldn’t sleep any better than her first night at her parents' home.  Tying the sash of her robe carefully around her, she made her way to the kitchen, which was curiously already dimly lit by a small lamp.

“Pop?” she said in surprise, spotting her father sitting at the kitchen table with a glass of warm milk.  “What are you doing up?” she asked softly.

He pointed to the glass and shrugged.  “You want some?”

“Yeah.  I think I would,” Jane said with a small smile, prompting her father to get up.  “No, I’ll get it,” she quickly said, not wanting to impose.

“Sit.  You’re walking wounded,” he said firmly, getting her to frown and reluctantly sit as he turned on the burner and got fresh milk from the refrigerator.  “Won’t be long,” he said with a soft smile.

After the milk was ready, her father fixed her a glass and himself another.   He sat next to her and they sipped their milk in companionable silence.

After a few moments, Jane cringed sympathetically and asked: “Do you often have trouble sleeping?”

“Not that often.  Only when worried about the family,” Frank said gently, looking at her. 

“I’m sorry, Pop,” Jane said guiltily, looking down at her mug.

“Comes with the territory,” he said, not really making his daughter any happier.  “It’s good territory, Jane,” he said firmly.  “The best,” he amended, taking her hand and squeezing.  “I’m proud of you.  You know that, right?”

Tears filled her eyes, which was incredibly annoying.  He pulled her into a one-armed hug and kissed her temple. 

She nodded and whispered: ”I love you, Pop.”

“I love you too, sweetheart.”

“I need . . . to get back to work tomorrow,” she said hesitantly, pulling back and looking at him with a wince.

“Oooh boy,” Frank groaned, knowing the commotion that would result with Angela, who was expecting a week of Jane.

“Yeah,” Jane exhaled with a weary chuckle.

“Well, at least you gave her a day of mothering.  She’ll cherish it for a long time.”

Jane looked at him uneasily.

“When someone loves you, they want to help.  And when you love someone, you let them,” he said with a warm smile.  “You gave her a gift, honey.”

Jane nodded hesitantly, then chuckled.  “She said her children were gifts but she wished we’d work harder getting our own gifts for her to dote on,” she noted with a smirk.  “She spent most of today reminding me of how I wasn’t getting any younger.”

Frank sighed.  “Nagging won’t make them pop out any faster.”

“No, it won’t,” Jane agreed, looking at her father with amusement.

He nodded and sipped his milk. 

She looked down at her milk and exhaled.  “Marriage and kids . . . might not happen at all, Pop,” she said hesitantly, looking at him closely.

“That’s what I thought, Jane,” he said with a nod, getting a startled look.  “Look what happened to me,” Frank groused.

“Hey!  I thought it was good territory, the best even,” she said with amusement, unable not to tease.

Frank chuckled.  “Yeah.”

“So . . . what happened?  What made you change your mind?”

“You mean, besides the shotgun Angela’s father threatened me with?”

“Yeah, besides that,” Jane said with a chuckle, resting her elbow on the table and chin in her palm.

Frank sighed, rubbing his face a thoughtful moment.  “I guess . . . when I went fishing, or to dinner, or just watched the game on the tube, I realized it was better with Angela than without her,” he said with a shrug.

“So it wasn’t all rocket’s red flare . . . bombs bursting in air??” Jane said with an amused smirk that quickly faded from the unamused look from her father.  “Uh…forget I said anything,” Jane said uncomfortably, scratching the back of her neck.

“There is some of that, Jane.  And not just when we argue,” he said with a thin smile, making Jane wince, really sorry she mentioned it.  “But that’s not what it’s all about for me.  It’s about the small moments, Jane,” he said sagely.  “Wanting to spend them with that one person that makes those moments better, just by being there.  And wanting to make the most of those moments for them too.”

Jane smiled at her father, who she always knew was a big-ole softie.  She sipped her milk.

“And I have to admit, the shotgun helped encourage me to get my head out of my ass,” he joked with a chuckle.

Jane coughed and blinked rapidly, reminded why inhaling milk was bad idea.

“You ok, honey?”

“Fi . . . ine,” Jane coughed, waving her hand dismissively.  “Went down…wrong,” she said with a pained smile.  “Uh . . . I think I should head in,” she said, clearing her throat.  “I’ve got to get up early,” she offered, placing her hand on his and squeezing.  He nodded with a warm smile.

She kissed him on the cheek and left the kitchen.  His gaze followed her, then dropped to the table where her empty glass remained.  He frowned as he got up to do his least favorite chore - washing dishes.  “Gifts, my ass,” he groused.

As he retired to his bedroom, Angela shifted in bed to squint at him in the dark.  “Frank?  Everything all right?” she asked groggily as he slipped under the covers.

“Everything is fine,” he said, kissed her on the lips, and settled under the covers.

“Love you, sweetie,” she said with a contented smile.

“Love you too, Angela.”

“What do you think Janie wants for breakfast tomorrow?”

“Uh . . . why don’t we worry about that tomorrow?” he offered reasonably.

“Ok, Frank.  Goodnight,” she said with a sleepy sigh.

“Goodnight, Angela.”


Jane walked into work with a cup of coffee in hand.

“Whoa, Rizzoli!  What are you doing here?”  Frost said as his partner tossed her jacket over the back of her desk chair. 

She knew she was going to get grief for returning to work so soon, anticipating her mother being the most vocal.  But she had things to do, crimes to solve, people to apologize to….

“I work here, unless something’s changed that I don’t know about,” she said, glancing towards the Lieutenant’s office uneasily.

“You look like shit, Rizzoli,” Detective Crowe offered in passing, shrugging innocently at her scowl. 

“Fuck off, Crowe,” Jane said flatly, knowing she couldn’t argue.  “So, how did the interviews with the martial arts mavens go?”  Jane asked, gingerly sitting down. 

“Well, Vice is happy about us helping them stop that illegal fight ring.  Unfortunately, our leading suspects insist on their innocence in the murder of Greg Johnston,” he said with a frown.

“Really?” Jane said noncommittally.

“Rizzoli!  Get your ass in my office NOW!”  The Lieutenant bellowed from her door, having noticed the expected empty chair was not empty.

“I guess it’s too late to go home,” Frost said with an uneasy cringe as Jane stood with a heavy sigh.

“Tempting, but I don’t want to add disobeying a direct order to her list,” Jane responded, ready to face what she feared coming.

“List?  She has a list?” Frost asked nervously, recalling the Lieutenant’s hard glare after Jane gave him the cold coffee.  He wondered if she was stilled annoyed with him.  Biting his lip, he wondered about the long list of people who had annoyed Marie Largo.  “Am I on it?  You’d tell me, right??”

Jane shook her head as she walked towards the office. 

Standing at the door, she was struck by how much paper was still on the Lieutenant’s desk, on the small sofa and chairs, and in boxes about the room.  Why would anyone in her right mind really wanted to be a Lieutenant, she wondered. 

“Stop hovering and get your ass inside.  And shut the door behind you,” she said briskly, folding the file she had been studying.  She took off her reading glasses and sat back in her chair. 

Jane was surprised by the glasses, but suspected the Lieutenant didn’t order her here to comment on her eyewear.  She shut the door, moved a file box off a seat, and sat.

The Lieutenant stared at her for several silent moments, making her uncomfortable, which Jane supposed was the point.  She braced herself for a lecture on how stupid she was to be at work . . . or perhaps, just how stupid she was in general.

Her boss took a deep breath and shook her head with disapproval.  “If you had played your cards right, you would have had Maura taking care of you and you would be recovering more quickly,” she said matter-of-factly.

Jane blinked.  “Excuse me?” 

“I could order you to go home.”

“You could,” Jane allowed slowly.  “You could also bring me up on charges,” she added bluntly, needing closure for her stupid actions, regardless of how painful it would be.

The Lieutenant grinned with genuine amusement.  “If I had to arrest everyone who ever acted like an idiot while trying to defend a woman’s honor, I’d have to arrest half the officers out there,” she said, glancing towards the bullpen.  “And then turn myself in,” she added wryly.


“Jeeze, Rizzoli.  You still have your head up your ass,” she said, shaking her head in disappointment.

Jane frowned with irritation.  “I think . . . I’m beginning to understand,” she admitted, then grew uncomfortable, wondering if her boss meant what she thought she meant.

The Lieutenant looked at her with surprise then skepticism, not quite convinced. “Here, make yourself useful,” she said, sliding a stack of files towards her.  “They admit to the fight club, which is no big surprise, but they claim innocence to the murder.”

Jane took the stack, muttering “not that we haven’t heard that before,” as she curiously flipped through the top folder and found the transcripts of the interviews with the Gwyneth Johnston and her lover, Julia Fontaine. 

“You’ll be riding a desk for a while, at least until you don’t look like the walking dead,” the Lieutenant said, then snorted with amusement, which faded when she eyed a pile of folders on her desk.  She grabbed one folder with a heavy sigh, opened it up, and squinted at it a moment.  With another heavy sigh, bordering on a growl, she glanced around her desk and picked up her reading glasses, glaring unhappily at them before putting them back on.

Realizing she had been dismissed, Jane stood with her armful of files and went to the door.  When she reached for the handle, the Lieutenant called to her.


Jane turned curiously and watched the Lieutenant pull out her sidearm from her desk drawer and place it on the desktop with a thunk. 

“I believe this is yours,” she said, still not looking at her and turning a page over.

Relief washed over Jane as she quickly went to the desk and reached for her gun.  The Lieutenant’s surprisingly swift hand stopped her from picking it up, startling her.  She found herself looking into intense eyes, glaring up at her over glasses.

“Next time, I hit back,” she said crisply, leaving no question in Jane’s mind that she would.

A smile slowly emerged as Jane realized the intimidating woman had succinctly told her that the slate was clean between them.

“Now get out of here,” she groused, releasing Rizzoli’s hand. “Or I’ll make you my administrative assistant,” she threatened, vaguely waving towards the plentiful boxes about her office.

Jane’s eyes widened before she quickly left, with her files and her sidearm.


Jane nervously stood at the medical examiner’s office door.  “Uh, Maura?”

Maura looked up from her computer screen with surprise, then alarm.  “Jane!  You look awful,” she said with concern.

“Gee, you sure do know how to sweet-talk a girl,” Jane countered with a smirk, then frowned noticing the bags under Maura’s eyes.  “You’re looking a little worse for the wear too,” she added with concern.

“I had trouble sleeping since your injury and swift departure from the hospital,” Maura said with blunt honesty.

Jane cringed guiltily, her gaze dropping to the floor as she softly responded: “I had to get out of there.”  She did not want to admit that mortifying embarrassment was one of the main reasons for her need to escape.

“I wish you would have let the doctor check your stitches first.  I was worried you might have torn them.  You could have also risked infection, Jane.”

“I’m fine,” Jane countered easily with a smile.

Maura sighed with disappointment, having heard that stock answer before.

“I am,” Jane protested.  “You can check them for yourself, if you really have to,” Jane blurted in frustration.

“All right.  Sit up there,” she immediately responded, motioning to the exam table before grabbing a pair of gloves.

Really, Maura?” she asked incredulously, looking around the lab, not expecting Maura to actually want to check here.

“I am accepting your offer, unless you didn’t mean it,” Maura said, eyeing her in challenge.

Jane sighed.  “Fine!  Suit yourself,” she growled and sat on the table, pulling her shirt up from her jeans to expose her bandaged side as Maura donned the gloves with a small, pleased smile.

Jane sighed heavily.  She jerked away slightly as Maura gently pealed away the bandage from her body.  “Sorry.  It is fortunate you are not suffering from hirsutism,” Maura said conversationally, getting Jane to look at her and blink.

“I’ve . . . always thought so,” Jane hesitantly agreed with an uncomprehending cringe, getting Maura to look up and smile.

“Hirsutism is a condition of excessive hair growth.  The adhesive on the tape tends to stick to hair, which can be painful during bandage removal,” she explained as Jane nodded slowly.  “Studies have linked hirsutism to high levels of circulating insulin, commonly found in the obese.  Other symptoms include coarse, pigmented body hair on the face, chest, and back, acne, and a deepening voice.”

“Then I am really happy I’m not suffering from hair-suit tism,” Jane interjected dryly, rubbing her hair-free chin.

“Me too,” Maura said with a small smile, briefly glancing over her, causing Jane to blink.  Did Maura just check her out? 

“The stitches are intact but the surrounding skin is a bit redder than I would like to see,” she said, refocusing on her task at hand.  She carefully probed the area, causing Jane to jump a little.  “Sorry,” Maura said with a sympathetic wince, then added with a twinkle in her eye “my patients aren’t normally ticklish.”

“Funny,” Jane said with a small smirk, enjoying Maura’s feisty side.

“What antibiotic ointment have you been using?”


“To treat your…,” Maura started to explain then frowned deeply, seeing the uncomprehending look on Jane’s face.  “Jane!  You left the hospital without getting any wound care instructions?”


“I should have realized that you had left too quickly,” Maura said with concern.  “I should have made sure . . . ,” she said self-consciously, clearly irritated.

“Whoa, Maura,” Jane interjected.  “It’s not your fault I didn’t get the ointment,” she added, grabbing Maura’s hand and looking at her upset friend. 

“But . . . ,” Maura argued, shaking her head.

“Not. Your. Fault.  Repeat after me.  Not. Your. Fault,” Jane said with a small smile, looking into her eyes.

“Jane, I’m not a very good friend if I . . . ,” Maura persisted, withdrawing her hand with her frown still in place.

“God, Maura!” Jane interrupted with frustration, quickly regretting her outburst when she saw the hurt look.  “You’d have to be omniscient to save me from myself, you know,” she tried with a lop-sided grin and a brief caress of her arm.

“It would help to know you were about to do something dangerous,” Maura noted thoughtfully.  “But to actually protect you, I would need to be omnipotent too,” she added.

Jane smiled at the impeccably logical woman.

“Sometimes I wish I were,” Maura admitted softly, looking into Jane’s brown eyes with an uneasy breath before refocusing on replacing the bandage.

“Then you’d be really scary,” Jane joked, causing Maura to look up uncertainly.

“You think . . . I’m scary?”

“Scary smart, sometimes,” Jane offered readily.  As Maura was deciding how she felt about that remark, Jane smiled warmly and gently brushed away a strand of hair from Maura’s brow. 

The gesture eased Maura’s concern.  Jane’s touch had that effect, Maura noted.

“Why don’t we go grab a long lunch?  We can stop by the pharmacy and you can help point out what I need for proper wound care.  Sound good?” Jane suggested, feeling very pleased when a big smile bloomed on Maura’s face.

“It’s a date!” she blurted happily and finished up with the bandage.

“O . . . kay,” Jane acknowledged softly, intently watching Maura and her hands, wondering how they would feel without those gloves.

“There, you should be good for the immediate future,” Maura said, carefully tracing her fingers over the edge of the bandage to ensure it stuck properly.  Jane jumped.  “Are you really that ticklish, Jane?”

“I am going to plea the fifth,” Jane muttered, quickly climbing off the table.

“Hmmm,” Maura responded, her interest piqued.  “I think that warrants further investigation,” she said with a grin, stepping closer to Jane with her hand out to obtain more empirical data.

“My stitches!  You don’t want to do anything to damage them, right?” Jane blurted uneasily, quickly stepping back.

“Very well.  You get a reprieve for now, Detective,” Maura said, feeling a bit embarrassed for teasing her; Jane had a valid point.

Jane looked at Maura with a wince.  “I ah . . . I’m really sorry for being such a jerk in the hospital,” she said sincerely. 

Maura looked at her and Jane could see the hurt in her eyes.  “You acted like we weren’t friends anymore,” she offered.

Jane cringed guiltily.  “I’m so sorry, Maura.  You’re the best friend I’ve ever had.  But after every time I end up hurting you, I have to wonder why you’d still want to be my friend,” she offered apologetically, searching Maura’s eyes.

Unsure of the best response, Maura chose the shortest.  “I enjoy complicated puzzles.”

Jane chuckled softly.  “I’m not complicated, Maura.”

“Oh I beg to differ,” she responded with a slight smile.

Jane briefly looked at her curiously, then just smiled and shook her head.  “I’ll see you in” she said, checking her watch, “about two hours?”

“I’ll be waiting,” Maura said warmly and watched Jane leave.


“Jane, remember the question you had about insurance payouts on the Johnston parents?”  Frost looked up from his computer terminal with a grin.

Jane looked up from her desk curiously, tucking a long stray hair behind her ear.

“There was a life insurance policy that was split among the children,” he said.

“How much?” she asked with great interest.

“Three million.”

Jane whistled.

“Each,” Frost added with satisfaction, noting her surprised expression.  “Sounds motive-worthy, doesn’t it?”  he said, enjoying seeing her respond to the new facts as she digested them and ordered them into something no one else could usually see.  Though he had not been a detective that long, he would bet good money that Jane Rizzoli was the best he would ever work with.

“Dig up anything new on the parents’ accident?”

“Nothing concrete yet,” Frost said, clearly not done.  “But I did find out that the parents were philanthropists.  Most of the Johnston fortune was given to charity upon their deaths.  Which I’m sure the children were not too pleased with.”

“Hmm.  Does sound like motive,” Jane said absently as she glanced down to one of the files the Lieutenant had given her, wondering why she needed to see the medical report again.  Reading over several new additions to the file, she became irritated.

“Why didn’t I know about this?!?” she said tersely, glaring at Frost.

“Know what?”

“That Greg Johnston had pancreatic cancer in an advanced stage??” she said, holding up the addenda to the medical file.

“Uh . . . you were indisposed?” Frost said with a cringe.  She sighed heavily, shaking her head.  “It’s kind of moot, isn’t it?  The guy died before his illness could take him,” he said.

Jane frowned, not convinced anything was moot at this point.  She automatically picked up the phone and dialed a memorized number. 


“Maura?  What are the chances of mortality with the cancer Greg Johnston had?” Jane asked, forgoing pleasantries, knowing Maura didn’t mind.

“Based on his physician’s prognosis, in the eighty-five percentile, even with his treatments.”

“Hmm,” she responded, looking through the file.  “And how long might this individual be expected to live?”

“The prognosis is on page 23 of his medical record.  His physician stated less than a year,” Maura said, causing Jane to quickly flip to that page.

“Less . . . than a year,” Jane repeated slowly with a smile.

“Is that important to the case?” Maura asked with interest, always intrigued by Jane’s perspective and insight.

“It just might be, Maura.  Not sure yet.  Bye!” Jane blurted happily, hanging up.

Maura stared at her phone a moment as a pleased smile filled her face.  She had not heard such enthusiasm in Jane’s voice in a long time.

Hours flew by as Jane and Frost poured through the details in the police and newspaper reports on the accident and the various business and social newspaper articles about the family and their business dealings.  Jane stared at the mosaic of information on the several large computer displays hanging on the wall.  A wisp of a theory teased at her, swirling around in her head, just out of reach. 

She knew it was there; she just had to recognize it.

Frost glanced at her, noting she looked like she was in a museum staring at a work of art; her head shifted from one side to the other as if that might help her to see better.  He winced with embarrassment when his stomach growled loudly.

“Fuck!” Jane suddenly blurted, glancing at her watch in horror.  It was three thirty!! 

“Figure something out?” Frost asked hesitantly as Jane glared at the floor.

“Apparently NOT!  I . . . I missed lunch!” she hissed in self-loathing.  She couldn’t even keep a lunch date with Maura, she considered and glanced over to her desk with a wince, where several bags now sat. 

Frost didn’t understand her agitation; it wasn’t the first time they worked through lunch.  Glancing at the deli bags, he smiled broadly and made a beeline for them.  “We have lunch right here,” he said and read the note he pulled off the bag “Courtesy of Dr. Isles!” he added happily, handing over the note to Jane.

I didn’t want to interrupt.  Happy hunting. - Maura

“Oooh my favorite, a turkey club!” he said, noting “TC” on one of the bags and peeking inside with a smile.  “And this must be yours, pastrami on rye with dill pickles on the side,” he announced, reading the shorthand on the bag and helpfully placing it in front of her.  “This is awesome.  I’m starving,” he said, pulling his sandwich out and eagerly taking a bite.

She nodded absently and picked up the smallest bag with a cringe.  Opening it, she found a tube of antibiotic cream, bandages, and medical tape for her stitches.  She frowned, wondering how Maura could have come and gone without her knowing.   She really hoped Maura had not actually tried to get her attention and got blown off.  

It’s the small moments, she considered worriedly.  And she couldn’t even get them right, she considered as depression settled over her.

“Barry?” she said weakly as he took a big bite out of his sandwich.  “I’m kind of fading here, I’m going to call it a day.”

“Hmm?” he said and swallowed, not sure he heard right.  Jane never admitted she was anything less than 100%.

“I’ll see you tomorrow, okay?”  she said, putting on her coat.

“Sure.  I’ll uh . . . keep after the insurance leads?”

“Yeah.  See if you can set up a meeting with the lead detective on the parents’ case.  And . . . I wouldn’t be surprised if you find the siblings have policies on each other,” she said tiredly and grabbed her sandwich and ointment.

“The innate evilness of people theory?” Barry said with interest.

“Something like that.”

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