Quiet Nights (after 'The Fix')
by Kassidy Rae
He was strung out on horse against his will, but it's all over now, no problem. Back to normal.

Right, sure.

Except for those quiet nights when no one is there to put on the act for. He's got it together enough to play the game, be who everyone expects, except for those damned nights. Too quiet.

Lying in the dark in bed, eyes closed, he feels the needle slip into his arm. All the hollow reassurances -I'm okay, it's done, over, don't talk about it -they disappear, just evaporate. Because the real Hutch wants it, God he wants it, a tide that takes over his body, warm rush, relaxing.

Everything is okay, nothing matters. Floating.

What would Starsk say if he told him there's nothing better than that rush at the end of the needle? Not sex. Not even friendships meant to last foreverů.

No. He sits up in bed with a jerk.

Yeah, the game would be up, all right, and that's not gonna happen. Just wait for tomorrow, he tells himself, for the streets and the badge and the partner, for their strength that reminds him of who he is: street-smart, cool, quick on his feet. Him and Starsk, striking fear in the hearts of low-lifes everywhere, caring enough to make the wrongs right. Remember?

He remembers. His body, wound up tight with the all-too-familiar longing, relaxes. Don't forget breathin', says Starsky in his head. Very important. Hutch smiles.

C'mon, I got your back. Wait it out. Just 'til morning.

He gets up, makes some coffee. And he waits.

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