That's how she would describe the weather.
New York was in the grip of one of it's summer heat waves, which was precisely the moment that Maintenance discovered that the air conditioning in the 1-6 needed an overhaul. They had been without cooling for approximately three hours, since eight in the morning.
Olivia Benson neither knew nor cared why the A/C needed an overhaul. All she knew was that the light cotton shirt she'd hastily thrown on this morning was going to end up in the workout clothes pile.
She was glad she wasn't wearing the wool she'd almost grabbed. If she had to ruin a shirt with excess sweat, it might as well be one of the cheap ones.
She stared blankly at the limp paper in her hands, trying to remember what the hell she was doing. She, Elliot and Munch were driving the desks today. Their first call had been taken care of far too quickly, and they'd found themselves back at the precinct. Fin had lucked out and had been needed by the Narc squad in the 2-1, something having to do with one of his old cases.
"Hello, Counselor. What brings your esteemed self to the seventh level of Hell?" Munch grinned at ADA Alex Cabot from behind his desk, sweat layering his mop of hair flat against his skull. A small desk fan did nothing to alleviate the heat, merely moving the muggy air across his skin. Olivia envied him that much.
Alex smiled, either at his appearance or his classical reference, her light suit perfectly pressed and falling against her calves at just the right height. Olivia allowed herself a brief once over, taking in the cool composure of the ADA, the small heels of her black pumps just high enough to accentuate everything that was right about her body.
"I needed the statement from Fromansky." Olivia tried to keep her eyes from tracing the smooth line of Alex's calves as she leaned against her customary corner of the detective's desk.
From behind his desk, Munch nodded. Olivia frowned slightly as she remembered the nervous rookie who had collared a serial rapist by accident. She hoped the kid took advantage of the city shrink.
"Then I realized that I hadn't had the pleasure of your company today." Munch laughed at the absurdity of Alex's statement. Olivia smirked, wrapping her hand around the cool sweat of her icy soda, the only relief from the oppressive heat that she had.
"Any word on how long you have to suffer?" The general question was aimed at all three of them, Alex shifting to look at Olivia and Elliot. She caught Olivia's eye and smiled slightly. Olivia smiled back weakly. She could feel the heat pressing in on all sides of her.
Alex reached over and plucked the soda from Olivia's loosely grasping hand. Any protest died before it could form, Olivia being too caught up in staring as Alex wrapped her full lips around the straw, taking a long pull of the chill liquid. The bright blue of Alex's eyes captured her, preventing her from shooting a confused, questioning look at her partner if only to confirm what she was witnessing.
The small fan on Munch's desk whirred steadily. Shouts and masculine catcalls sounded faintly through the hallways outside. Across her desk, Olivia could acutely feel the heavy stare her parter was levelling on them.
Alex lowered the soda back to Olivia's desk, a smile barely curving her lips, her eyes dark with promise. A visceral thrill shot through the detective as her body responded to the sultry message in Alex's eyes.
"Uhh...Maintenance said they should be done by two."
Bless Elliot for breaking the spell Alex had woven over her without a word.
Wait, Alex wasn't looking at her anymore.
"I'm sure you'll all find ways to cope with the heat."
With a last, small smile for Olivia, Alex swept from the squad room. Olivia stared as she told herself to turn away. She couldn't be looking at Alex that way. She was just making sure that Alex got out ok.
A hand appeared in front of her face, snapping it's fingers. Olivia jumped and turned, glaring at Elliot.
"Stare at your girlfriend later, we've got cases to work on."
"She's not my girlfriend." Olivia gritted out through a suddenly clenched jaw.
Munch let out a short bark of laughter. Olivia shot a glare at him. If this continued, she'd be doing nothing but glaring for the rest of her career.
"Make sure to let her down easy, then. I don't want to have to bust my ass because you're too chickenshit to go on a date." Elliot ducked his head down, returning to his paperwork.
Munch grinned, tossing his pen down on his desk. "If she's been bad before, can you imagine what she'd be like when she got turned down by you? I'll turn myself into the CIA just to get away from it!"
Olivia shook her head. "Fuck both of you."
"Hey, Munch, you think she's heard about that time Liv here had half the strip club trying to get her to pat them down?" It would be sad. Kathy was going to hate it, but there was really no choice. She had to kill Elliot.
"I wasn't there for that, but I remember this one time we went over to the Village and Olivia left with at least a half dozen numbers." Munch wiped his forehead, sweeping away some of the rivulets that had formed.
"You had numbers too, Munch," Olivia shot back.
"I got two! And one of them was supposed to be for you! It makes an old man weep to see how youth is wasted on the young."
"Young! I'm thirty six!"
"All the more reason for you to jump at whatever chances you get." Munch grinned at her.
"Unlike you, old man, there's an active interest for women of age, and I've got the ultimate aphrodisiac!"
"The badge. Not even ADA's are immune." Elliot remarked boredly. He looked up at Olivia. "So you going after her or what?"
Olivia stared at him blankly. "Going after her?"
Elliot shrugged, flipping over paper he was working on. "Y'know, ask her out to lunch. That thing I'm going to do when I finish with this paperwork. She owes you a drink, anyway."
She could feel Munch's grin. It permeated the damn air, resting on her shoulder like some sort of vulture waiting for it's kill.
"Anything to get away from you two." Olivia stood, grabbing her soda. "Fucking lunatics."
"Tell her we say hi, and thanks for the show."
Olivia growled and stalked from the squad room.
Damn meddling craptastic ass spelunking crotch grabber!
Olivia dashed a hand through her sweat dampened hair. There was something satisfying about stringing together curses until their original meanings were lost in an avalanche of profanity.
She navigated the halls of the station with ease, her long stride taking her out the front door rapidly. She paused at the foot of the steps and stared at her hand. The soda continued to sweat, it's icy chill cooling her hand.
Slowly, she brought the straw to her lips and took a long, satisfying suck, acutely aware of the last person who had taken a sip. She could feel the slight residue of Alex's lipstick, could almost taste the other woman...
Satisfied for now, Olivia lowered the soda and swaggered toward the deli around the corner. A turkey sandwich, air conditioning and some uninterrupted thinking time sounded damn good right about now.