by Resonant

"Sir, I ..." Jim began.

"Sir?" Simon sat back in his chair and laced his fingers together. "This ought to be good."

Jim stood up and closed the door. "This," Simon said, "ought to be really good."

Jim couldn't quite meet his eyes. "There's something that I feel I should inform you of." Simon looked at him inquiringly. "I'm not sure if there's a department policy that would cover this," Jim said, rubbing his mouth on the back of his hand, "but it's something that I felt you should know about, and then you can take whatever action you feel is necessary, because I ..."

"Spit it out, Ellison, I'm on the clock here."

"It's Sandburg," Jim said. "Sandburg and I. Have a relationship. A personal relationship."

"Just let me call CNN," Simon said tartly.

"A romantic relationship," Jim said doggedly.

"And?" Simon said.

Jim's head came up. "What do you mean, 'and'?"

"And you want your overtime synchronized? And you never got around to changing the beneficiary on your life insurance? And you need a new badge because you've decided you want to hyphenate?"

Jim frowned. "Sir, what ..."

"My point is, Jim, why are you telling me this now?"

"Well, I thought, when a new development like this happens ..."

Simon snapped upright in his chair. "New development?" At Jim's nod, he put his hand over his eyes and sighed, "Christ almighty. You two are even denser than I thought."

There was a brief silence.

"Um, let me make sure I understand," Jim said finally. "You mean to tell me that all this time you thought ..."

"The evidence," Simon said, "points that way, Detective."

Jim took that in. "And you figured this had been going on since ..."

"There are various theories on that," Simon said. "I believe the Brown camp is of the opinion that you two were an item already when Sandburg moved in, while the Connor camp holds that it wasn't until Blair was kidnapped -- "

"Shit." But it was impossible to ignore the humor of the situation. "Well, listen, the next time the Brown and Connor camps have an opinion about my private life, could you issue me a bulletin? Might come in handy to know what's going to be happening to me a couple years down the road."

"There's a small but vocal minority in Dispatch that has you two adopting a baby," Simon offered, and Jim snorted. He was getting some of his equilibrium back.

"So since you've believed, all this time ... then I take it that it's not a problem?"

"No, of course it's not a problem," Simon said. "Department policy is, and I quote, personal relationships between employees are to be handled at the discretion of the supervisor. Which would be me. And as long as you two aren't necking in staff meetings or having shouting matches on stakeout, I'd say the supervisor's discretion is ..."

"... discreet," Jim finished. He smiled. "Thanks, Simon," he said.

"Don't mention it," Simon said, and as Jim opened the door, he shouted, "And I really mean don't mention it, Ellison."


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