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Overnight Therapy - Chapter Fifteen


Title: Overnight Therapy

Author: LSM71059
Fandom: Spooks
Characters: Lucas
Rating: PG-13
Spoilers: Season Seven
Summary: Lucas North has someone to confide in and take care of him when the nightmares and bad flashbacks happen.
Disclaimer: All Spooks Characters are the intellectual property of the BBC.
The Inspiration for this story was taken from the song "South City Midnight Lady" by the Doobie Brothers
(Time Line for chapter: Between Episodes 7.03 & 7.04)


Chapter Fifteen

When Lucas dropped her arm, Lori knew they had to be close to Thames House. And Lucas confirmed that fact. It was time to put on the Sam Smith professional persona. 

So as they finished their trek, Lori started by introducing herself to Lucas. She winked first then stuck out her hand to shake. Politely but in a very serious businesslike manner Lori said, “Hello, I’m Sam Smith, the renovation project liaison for MP Enterprises. You must be Mr. North, the owners’ representative, nice to meet you.”

Lucas found it fascinating, but a bit disconcerting, how quickly Lori could switch from the kind, caring, and whimsical Lori he had come to know this week to the very serious businesslike Sam Smith. He likened it to a Jekyll and Hyde experience. He shook her hand following her lead by replying, “Excellent to meet you in person Ms. Smith. Yes, I am the owners’ representative. And please, call me Lucas.”

When they dropped the handshake, Lori pulled the key card out of her coat pocket holding it up. She said, “I’ll call you Lucas only if you call me Sam. I want to thank you for responding so quickly for my request for access to the project. Thank you for having this delivered to me. And since I have this, I imagine all the security clearances were in order.” She pocketed the card before continuing, “I appreciate you taking time out of your busy schedule to show me the lay of the land.”

They started walking again as Lucas said, “You are welcome. And yes, the clearances were in order. We appreciate all the data your firm has provided. May I say your project website is a vast wealth of information. It is my pleasure to give you a tour of Thames House Ms. Smith, Sam. Is Sam short for Samantha perhaps?”

As she opened her messenger bag to take out the quarter scale drawings for the project, Lori answered absently, “It is.” She showed Lucas the drawings pointing to the first page and said, “As you can see the renovations will begin in the garage area. Perhaps we could start there and work our way through the building in the order the renovation will take place.”

“Sounds very logical, we will need to sign in at reception first. After we can proceed to the car park,” Lucas said taking the set of drawings from Lori’s hands and tucking them under his arm.

They reached Thames House going to the front entrance. Upon reaching it, Lucas opened the door for her gesturing to go in saying, “After you.”

Lori paused a moment to close her eyes, take a deep breath and blow it out before proceeding in to the building. She thought, “Ok, you can do this. Be strong. Don’t be nervous. Hopefully there won’t be a big group to meet and it will be mostly one on one situations.”   

As he waited for her to enter Lucas thought, “Lori does the exact same thing I do when entering this building. She must be taking a moment to collect herself before we proceed in. Perhaps she isn’t quite as confident as she portrays and is a bit nervous with new situations. I think her shyness is a factor.”

“Thank you,” Lori said as she past him to enter the building. He directed her to the reception desk and showed her where to sign in. That being done, Lucas pointed her in the direction of the stairs. He said, “It’s only one flight down and quicker than waiting on the lift.”

“Works for me,” Lori said falling in to step beside him. They rapidly descended the stairs side by side. Lucas liked the way she could sync up with him. As they exited the stairwell in to the car park, Roz and Jo pulled in. Lucas motioned them over. He made the introductions, “Ros, Jo, this is Sam Smith the project liaison for the renovation project from MP Enterprises. Sam these are my colleagues Ros Myers and Jo Portman.”

As he made the introductions, Lori shook hands with the two women and handed them her business card. She said and nodded in acknowledgement, “Good Afternoon Ms. Myers, Ms. Portman.”

Ros nodded and answered for both, “Good Afternoon, Ms. Smith. I see Lucas is showing you round.” She turned to him, “Coming up to the Grid?”

Lucas said, “Eventually, we are getting started with the tour. Sam requested we go in the order of the renovation.” Lori watched the interaction between the others. She noted the reserve between Lucas and Ros.

“See you up there later then,” Ros said dismissively walking towards the lift.

“It was nice to meet you Sam,” Jo said before turning to follow Ros.

“And you, Jo,” Lori said. After the two women disappeared in to the lift, Lori reached over to take the drawings out of Lucas’ hand. She winked at him as she did giving him a slight smile as their hands touched. He smiled slightly back at her. She flipped the drawings to the right page then walked over to the area where the project would begin on Monday. He looked over her shoulder following her as she paced off the dimensions. Stopping at the furthest corner, she turned around, and said casually, “So your colleagues, tell me about them.”

“You met Ros and Jo. Ros is the team leader. The rest of the team consists of Ben Kaplan, Malcolm Wynn-Jones, Connie James and our Section Chief, Harry Pearce. You will most likely meet them later this afternoon,” said Lucas.

Lori let it go at that and moved on, “I’ll not bore you with the structural details so we can move on to the next floor.”

“It is not boring at all to me. Originally, I went to University to study architecture,” Lucas shared as they made their way back to the stairwell.

“Then that makes you the perfect Owner’s Representative doesn’t it?” Lori teased. At the First Floor, Lucas showed Lori how the access card worked. He said, “It works the same for all the areas. You have an all access card. So if for any reason, it comes up missing you will need to notify us immediately.

“Let’s hope that won’t be necessary,” Lori said. They made their way back to the reception area and Lucas helped her off with her coat before taking his off. He left them in the care of the front desk attendant. They headed down a side corridor. Ben emerged from the records room as they passed by. Lucas made introductions as he had in the car park. Ben and Lori shook hands and exchanged greetings. She handed him a business card.

As he pocketed it, Ben asked, Will you be up to the Grid this afternoon Lucas?”

Lucas confirmed, “We will as soon as we are done walking the project.

Ben nodded, he handed Lori his card and said, “If Lucas isn’t available feel free to contact me. She thanked him and he was off down the hall. Lori said, “He seems like a pleasant chap.”

“Ben is one of the good ones,” Lucas said. Two hours later, they had walked the entire project save the floor with the Grid on it. Lori was impressed with Lucas’ level knowledge regarding Architecture. Lucas was intrigued with Lori’s ability to flip her personality on a dime. One moment, Lori was winking and teasing him. The next, Sam Smith was conducting business. His colleagues had definitely met Sam not Lori. Lucas said, “Ready to see your office suite we have reserved you?”

“More than ready,” Lori said. “I can see I need to start working out more again. I’m beat from all the walking,”

That got a smile out of Lucas. He thought, “I’ll have to offer to work out with her.” He said, “It’s down the hall from the Grid. Let me introduce you to the rest of the team before we see your domain.”

“If we must,” Lori sighed, feigned weariness, and pretended to faint against the wall as they waited for the lift to the Grid.

Lucas shook his head in amusement, patted her shoulder and pulled on her arm to help her straighten up. He whispered in her ear, “Courage, Lori, Courage, we are almost done and then we can go home to have dessert that’s waiting for us.”

Lori was ready with an excellent suggestive retort but she didn’t get to use it. The doors opened on the lift revealing Connie James. Lucas and Lori entered the lift. He introduced the two. Lori nodded at Connie standing on the opposite of the lift from her. She didn’t shake her hand or give her a business card. There was something about Connie that didn’t sit right with Lori. It gave her a cold chill up her spine. Since they were only one floor down, the lift ride was very short. 

Connie went to her desk and Lucas guided Lori over to meet Malcolm. She genuinely liked Malcolm instantly. Not only because of Lucas’ demeanor around him but Malcolm himself had a very warm and inviting personality. Lucas made Malcolm blush slightly when he praised his technology skills. Lori shook his hand and handed him her card. She said, “Now I know who I can call when I have trouble with my computer.”

Malcolm said, “Very pleased to meet you Ms. Smith. We’ve been anticipating your arrival.”

“Please call me Sam,” Lori said with a warm smile.

“Sam then, and I am Malcolm” he responded returning her smile. He offered, “Would you care for a cup of tea?”

“That would be lovely,” Lori said.

“Please have a seat while I get the tea. Lucas would you like one?” Malcolm said pulling out a chair for Lori.

“Yes, that would be grand,” Lucas said giving Malcolm a rare smile.

Lucas leaned against the desk crossing his arms and legs. He said in a low voice only she could hear teasing, “I’m not sure who is more smitten you or Malcolm.”

Lori gave him a sideways look as she took her seat before responding teasing right back, “He is so charming and such a gentleman. What Lady wouldn’t fall for him in a heartbeat, jealous?”

Before Lucas could retort, Malcolm returned with the tea. They sat around drinking it and chatting about the project till Ros came in and interrupted. She asked, “Lucas, has Ms. Smith met all of the team?”

“All save Harry,” Lucas said.

“That may have to wait, he’s out this afternoon,” Ros said. “If you would excuse us I need Malcolm.”

“Of course,” Lucas said straightening from the edge of the desk collecting his and Lori’s tea cups.

“Thank you for the tea Malcolm. It was delightful making your acquaintance,” Lori said as she stood up and extended her hand to him. She wasn’t going to let Ros run her out without extending her thanks. Plus, what was with Ros acting like she wasn’t even in the room. Two could play that game. She didn’t even give a look in Ros’ direction.

Malcolm took her hand shaking it with one and covering it with the other. He said, “And you Sam, please don’t hesitate to contact me if I can be of service,”

Lucas and Lori left the Grid area and made their way down the hall to her suite. He used his access card to open the door. He flipped on the lights. There was a small reception area with a desk and three guest chairs. Each of the other three walls had a door.

The first revealed the plan room complete with racks for the plans and a drafting table with lighting over it, a row of file cabinets and a storage cupboard.

The opposite wall in the reception area led in to the conference room. It had a table large enough to sit ten comfortably. On one wall was a cork board and the other wall a wipe off white board. The wall opposite the door had cabinets that when opened revealed a television, DVD player and sound system on one side and a microwave and counter space with a refrigerator under it on the other.

The last door directly across from the main door opened up in to Lori’s office. It was spacious enough to hold her credenza with a computer and printer on it, desk and chair, two guest chairs and a large overstuffed leather couch along one of the side walls. The other wall had cabinets. Lucas opened them to reveal a counter with a bar and mini fridge under it and a microwave built in over the top. Her own television/DVD player built in and lateral files on the bottom. He said, “This is a grand set up. If it doesn’t suit, let me know I’ll move down here.”

Sitting down behind her desk putting her messenger bag down and leaning back in her large black leather chair putting her feet up on the desk, Lori said, “Oh, I think I will be able to make due.”

“I need to tend to a few things on the Grid before I can leave for the day. Would you like to wait here for me or would you prefer to go now?” Lucas asked hoping she would want to wait.

“That’s up to you, Lucas. I can just as easily work here as at the apartment, “ Lori said leaving the decision in his hands.

“I would like to escort you home. So why don’t you work here and I will return as soon as I can,” Lucas said. 

“Sounds like a plan. See you in a bit,” Lori said with a smile as she straightened up in her chair and started to unpack her messenger bag.

Lucas returned the smile before taking his leave. He left the door to her office open but closed the outer door making sure it locked behind him. Lori let a sigh of relief out after he left. She’d managed to survive meeting his team and didn’t have to do it in a big group. For all her bravado, Lori had never managed getting over her stage fright when dealing with groups of people she didn’t already know. She could take on the world as long as it was one on one or maybe two on one but more than that if anyone looked close they could see her terror.

Turning her chair around to the credenza, Lori fired up the computer. She logged on to her AliasSamSmith e-mail to see if any of her boys needed tending to. There were e-mails from everyone but Donovan. He rarely wrote to her at this address. Seven of them were just checking in to touch base and say Hi. And she cheerfully wrote back to them. The other three had various situations/problems that wanted Lori to comment on.  She took her time composing responses adding at the end of each message reminding them if need be they could call her day or night.

She was drained both emotionally and physically after finishing. She looked over at the couch and thought it would be a good place to take a nap while she waited on Lucas. She turned off the lights in the suite with the exception of the one in the reception area. Lori slipped off her shoes before lying down on her side and drifting off.

Down the hall, Ben had claimed Lucas’ attention wanting his input on a few cases he was currently working. When they finished, Ben offered to buy Lucas a beer after work to repay him for his help. Lucas said he’d have to take a rain check. Ben nodded and said to let him know when he’d like to collect.

Lucas then moved on to Ros. She had several items to discuss with him on upcoming matters that were most likely going to come to a head next week. He added his comments when it was warranted but for the most part, just listened to Ros. For the last item on her list, she called over Jo and Connie. Jo gave Lucas a quick rundown the Intel she had gathered to date. He told the ladies to call him if they needed help but Lucas felt Jo had a good handle on the situation.

Lucas went to check in with Malcolm. He didn’t require anything but took the opportunity to let Lucas know how lovely he thought the project liaison, Sam Smith was. Malcolm reiterated his earlier offer to be of service if needed. Lucas thanked him and said he would pass on his offer to Sam.

When he emerged from Malcolm’s area, Ben, Jo and Connie had left for the weekend. Ros was shutting down her computer preparing to go. He politely wished her a good weekend before she and Malcolm left together. Lucas sat down at his desk for the first time since he had left for lunch. He looked over his own e-mail. There was nothing that couldn’t wait till Monday. He shut down his computer before heading back down the hall to collect Lori.

He let himself back in to Lori’s suite. First thing he noticed was the light out in her office. He quietly made his way to her doorway and looked around to see her asleep on the couch. As he checked his watch, Lucas wondered to himself how long she’d been asleep. He’d been gone for three hours. 

Lori sensed someone was watching her. She opened her eyes and looked towards the doorway seeing Lucas in silhouette. She sat up stretching and said in a soft voice still full of sleep, “Are we ready to go home?”

“I am if you are,” Lucas answered.

Lori stood and flipped on the lights to the office blinking from the brightness. She slid on her shoes before going over to the desk to retrieve her messenger bag. She said, “I’m ready for dessert. I managed to work up quite an appetite this afternoon.”

“Then we best get you home so you can dig in to that Coconut Cake,” Lucas said. 



( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 15th, 2009 07:22 am (UTC)
Mmmmm, I can't wait to for Lucas and Lori to get home to that Coconut Cake (insert devil icon)

Will we have to wait long for this?
Mar. 15th, 2009 01:56 pm (UTC)
It depends on my schedule. I started a new position last week that leaves me little free time to write. But I will try to get something written soon.
Mar. 15th, 2009 02:50 pm (UTC)
My dear authoress,

My question was rhetorical. I am enjoying your story immensely. However, the last thing I would want to do is for you to feel pressure.

The Coconut Cake will keep!
Mar. 15th, 2009 02:53 pm (UTC)
My Dear Reader,

I am pleased to know you are enjoying the story. I didn't feel pressured, just wanted you to know why if I didn't get around to posting as often as I would like.

And we all know cake doesn't keep that long! Well, I guess we could put it in the freezer couldn't we?
Mar. 15th, 2009 08:02 am (UTC)
As a shy person, I can relate to Lori and Lucas's reaction to entering the building!!!

And Tubbs and I had a great time discussing your fic yesterday!!!
Mar. 15th, 2009 01:57 pm (UTC)
Yep, it's what shy people tend to do before entering any place.

You and Tubbs will have to fill me in on the highlights of your discussion.
Mar. 15th, 2009 06:32 pm (UTC)
I know - I do it too! :) It was all good btw! We were saying how much we were enjoying this story as well as swopping recommendations. (I now have a reading list like you wouldn't believe!)

Looking forward to reading more when you get the chance to write. Good luci with the new job, hope all goes well.
Mar. 16th, 2009 12:58 am (UTC)
I'm so pleased to hear you are enjoying the story.

I'd love a peek at your reading list if you cared to share

Thank you on your good wishes on the new job. After being unemployed for eleven months it was hard to get back in to working mode..
Mar. 15th, 2009 01:01 pm (UTC)
OOOH, coconut cake...with ooey, gooey icing? Can't wait...
Mar. 15th, 2009 01:58 pm (UTC)
Cake, cake, cake what is it about the cake? There was a whole chapter prior to that line you know..............LOL
Mar. 15th, 2009 08:48 pm (UTC)
Loved that you gave Malcolm some attention. He is one of my favorites.

Well I am definitely looking forward to Coconut Cake.

They are becoming so comfortable with each other. I could fall in love with this couple. Be a Lucas and Lori shipper.

Thank you.
Mar. 16th, 2009 01:01 am (UTC)
Malcolm is a favorite of mine too.

There will be cake, I'm just not sure when I'll be able to serve it up.

That's one of Lori's gift to make people comfortable with her if she chooses to do so.

You are welcome. Thank you for commenting.
Mar. 17th, 2009 10:09 pm (UTC)
I cant believe it took me three days to remember this was posted here. Life gets in the way sometimes...

So, they can be professiona when the time comes. Is it me or Ros is being kind of rude with Lori/Sam?
May I say I love Malcom? He's such a good man. You can always know where you stand with him. I really like the way he called her Lori when there's nobody around... Like a little secret game between them.

And Cake... I think Cake is an euphemism to what we are all waiting for. A kiss. It's that or it's that we are really hungry LOL.

Great chapter!!!
Mar. 18th, 2009 01:37 am (UTC)
Don't you just hate it when that happens?

Yes, weren't they doing well behaving professionally when need be? Yes, Ros was very dismissive of Sam Smith. You may, because there is more than enough Malcolm love to go round. The game is afoot and Lucas/Lori will play it to the hilt.

I think you all are really hungry but I'm not sure it is for the coconut cake. LOL

Thanks for the kudos.

You are welcome.

( 14 comments — Leave a comment )