Colby, Nikki (with background David/Colby and Liz/Nikki)Rating:
Colby misses David, and Nikki’s there to help.Word Count:
Cause and Effect, Season 6Notes:
Huge thank you to my wonderfully amazing beta mustangcandi
. <3 Story title comes from the song by the Backstreet Boys that gave me this idea. Disclaimer:
All characters and episode references/Numb3rs in general aren’t mine.
Colby turned around at the sound of a car pulling into the space next to his parked car. He watched as Nikki stepped out and came to lean one leg on the rusted metal rail where he was currently sitting looking out over LA.
“How did you find me here?” Colby asked looking up at Nikki from where he sat.
“I’m your partner, I know these things.” Nikki replied, slight amusement in her tone.
Colby just nodded his head and turned his gaze back to the LA landscape in front of him. Taking this as a cue, Nikki continued, “So, Idaho, what’s been going on with you lately?”
Furrowing his eyebrows, Colby looked back at Nikki, “Nothing.”
“Alright,” Nikki nodded pushing back from the railing. “So tell me why you’ve been moping around the office like a little lost puppy then.”
“I have not been moping around like a little lost puppy!” Colby replied outraged.
“Save it Granger. This is about David isn’t it? You miss your boyfriend don’t you?”
“You know, Betancourt, that joke got old a long time ago.”
“Maybe, but it’s still true isn’t it?”
Colby looked back out over the cliff, “David is not and has never been my boyfriend, Nikki.”
“But you want him to be, don’t you?”
Colby sighed, “Nikki, seriously, this isn’t even funny anymore.”
“I’m not joking, Colby.” Nikki propped her foot back on the railing. “And I’m not stupid. Why do you think I picked on David so much?”
“Your own twisted version of humor, perhaps?” Colby raised his eyebrow.
“Ha, ha, Granger, very funny. Maybe in the beginning, sure, but after a while?” Nikki paused fixing her attention on the buildings in the distance before looking at Colby again. “I knew David needed a push in the right direction and you
definitely weren’t going to do it.”
“Should I be thanking you then?”
“Not unless it worked.” Nikki sat down next to Colby on the railing. “Look, all jokes aside, I’m really sorry that David left for D.C. I know how much that has to hurt.”
“Do you?” Colby answered bitterly, fixing her with a hard stare. “Do you know what it’s like to arrive at work everyday expecting to see someone and they’re not there? This isn’t a few days off from work. David’s in Washington D.C.
and he’s not coming back. Don’t get me wrong; I’m happy for him. David deserves this opportunity more than anyone, but I can’t shake the feeling that a piece of me is missing every time I see his empty desk. We’ve been through so much together and it hurts
that he’s so far away now. I just….’’ Colby looked back over the horizon, at a loss for how to properly explain his pain in a way that would make sense or in a way that would truly describe how broken and alone he felt. As an afterthought, he added, “If you tell me I sound like a girl, Betancourt, I’ll never speak to you again.”
Nikki smiled knowingly before putting her hand on Colby’s shoulder.
“Liz almost left once too, remember? Last year, she almost left for Denver to pursue her own leadership promotion. And yeah, I get that Liz and I only knew each other for a couple of months back then versus the years you’ve known David, but it still hurt to think about her leaving, especially since just like you
, I was willing to let her walk on that plane without any clue as to how I felt. I got lucky. But for a while, I couldn’t shake the dread of how I would feel if she changed her mind and decided to take the position after all. So, I told her how I felt. It was one of the scariest things I’ve ever done and I don’t admit to that emotion often,” Nikki laughed reminiscing. “But we worked it out, and we’re happy. I want you to be happy too, Idaho, and I know it’s your decision if you ever tell David or not, but either way, I know when I need to shut up and when I need to listen.”
Colby snorted at that. He knew all too well that Nikki and listening didn’t belong in the same sentence, but she was trying to make him feel better so he couldn’t fault her for that.
“I’m not sure I can ever tell David,” Colby replied, his tone a form of dejected resignation. “I don’t want to ruin our friendship, and I would never want to put him in a situation where he might possibly decide to give up his promotion to come back here because of me.”
“There are ways around all types of obstacles,” Nikki supplied.
“Yeah, well, I’m not ready to go down that road just yet,” Colby sighed, focusing all his attention on the cars driving on the streets below.
They stayed like that for a while, silent, with Colby lost in his thoughts and Nikki simply being there for him until the streetlights flickered on.
“Well that’s all the moping around you’re allowed today, Granger,” Nikki said rising from the railing and dusting off her pants. “Call Liz and tell her to meet us at Materia. I’m starving.”
“And what if I object?” Colby asked in a teasing tone that Nikki was glad to hear back in his voice.
The look Nikki fixed Colby with was enough to have him pulling out his phone and dialing Liz’s number in no time.
“Hey Liz. Your girlfriend’s crazy. Come save me,” Colby spoke into the small phone, feigning distress.
Nikki just laughed and unlocked her car door.