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"Anything else?"

"No that's everything"

"Nice place you got here"


Micah Simmons didn't know what else to do or say. Thatcher Montgomery had done more than enough helping her move into her new apartment on the cold windy November day.

"I almost forgot" he said breaking the silence "these are for you"

Micah took the large dark green shoebox and pulled out a pair of well-worn mountain boots.

"Used them for hunting and fishing" Thatcher explained "put them outside your door every night"


"Folks will assume that a man lives here and won't fuck with you" he explained bluntly


"Oh is right little lady"

A little embarrassed Micah stubbornly said "I'll be okay"

"I know you will" Thatcher replied "it's a precaution Simmons just take it"

A clap of thunder boomed and lighting flashed then the rain began to fall

"Looks like you won't need to do that tonight"

"You're staying?"

"You putting me out in the rain Simmons?"

"No" Micah said a little too quickly

"Just teasing Simmons" Thatcher chuckled

"I mean I already took up your afternoon" she tried to insist "and what about TJ and Hudson?"

"I told you the boys are with their grandparents for a few days" Thatcher reminded her

 Even five-year-old twin boys couldn't save from her alone time with their father.

"Hungry?" Thatcher asked "I couldn't help but notice the two steaks you put in the fridge I could cook those up"

"......Yeah I guess I am hungry" Micah caved in "I have some frozen home fries too"

"Steak and potatoes it is then" Thatcher said peeling off his leather biker jacket

Micah was a little distracted by how well Thatcher's grey long sleeve armor shirt fit. She knew he was a gym rat but damn his abs were the definition of washboard. Watching Thatcher move around in her small kitchen made it looked like he lived here too.

"Thanksgiving is in two weeks" Thatcher said taking note of how bare her food storage was "planning on going to family or are you ordering greasy takeout?"

"Haven't decided"

"You haven't?"

"That's what I said Montgomery"

Thatcher let out a low chuckle as he lit the stovetop

"When is your birthday again?"

"April 25th"

"Ah a Taurus" Thatcher said pouring oil in a pan "no wonder you're as stubborn as a bull"

Micah rolled her eyes as she took out a cutting board for the onions and bell peppers.

"It's bold of you to assume that I even celebrate Thanksgiving"

"Most Americans celebrate it"

"I'm not most Americans"

"Are you telling me that you got some Native in you?"

"I might" Micah said she chopped into a bell pepper "who knows given the history of this country. Did your boys go to school dressed as Natives for a program?"

"Well actually TJ was a Pilgrim and Hudson was a Native" Thatcher said humoring her


"Well if it makes you feel better we typically just focus on the togetherness of the holiday not the dirty history"

"That's nice"

"If you're not going to family and you feel like being social you're more than welcome to come to our Thanksgiving"

"I'll think about it"

"So it's a yes"

"It's an I'll think about it"

Thatcher carefully placed the first steak in the pan and a nice sizzle sounded

"Just so you know I do hunt my own turkey"

"You hunt turkey"

"Did I peak your interest Simmons?"

"I mean is that even legal?" Micah asked now peeling the potatoes

"It is" Thatcher reassured "I have a license for it. Nothing like having a real fresh turkey on Thanksgiving Day"

"The same day? Do you even season it?"

"Of course, I season it" Thatcher chuckled "I also have to chop it's head, pluck it's feathers, and gut it's----"

"Okay I get the picture Mr. Hunter-Gatherer"

"Just giving you my credentials"

The rain began to fall harder as the drops hit the window panes with unbelievable force.

"No way in hell I was going to drive through all of that" Thatcher said as he flipped the first steak

"That's only because I let you stay" Micah pointed out

"And I'm forever grateful" Thatcher chuckled "you sure are a block of ice Simmons"

"No I'm just being honest" she said "I'll make some sweet tea; the steaks should be done by then"

By the time everything was cooked it was going on nine which was pretty late for dinner; but the two had spent all day moving.

"This place allows pets right?" Thatcher asked cutting into his steak

"Yes but I'm not---"

"Sarge's mother Bluebell just had a new litter. They'll be ready for adoption in a month or so-"

"I don't want a dog"

"You don't like dogs?"

"I didn't say that" Micah replied "I said I don't want one"

"You need one" Thatcher said "you're a single woman living by herself"

"So?" Micah frowned "I'm just as much of a police officer as you are"

"You know what I mean" Thatcher said "you would get a German Shepard like Sarge"

"I love how you assume that I have German Shepard money"

"I can help you with the finances" Thatcher insisted "food, vet bills, etc but you need a dog"

"So, what about the boots?"

"You use those too but the dog is going to help a lot; especially as it gets older and bigger"

"Even with all that; they probably don't allow that breed"

"They can make an exception"

"You sound so sure"

"You must be forgetting that as a fellow officer I have some authority on that"

"Montgomery please don't get me evicted over a dog I don't even want"

"You won't get evicted"

Micah rolled her eyes stuffing her mouth full of home fries and Thatcher chuckled

"Do I at least get to pick the puppy myself?"

"Of course, as long as it's a male"

"What if I don't want a male?"

"A male German Shephard will be bigger and stronger especially if he's not fixed" Thatcher explained "Sarge is trained to kill if needed"



".... I'm not sure how I feel about that"

"I'll tell you what I'm taking the boys to see the puppies the Saturday after Thanksgiving" Thatcher said "you can come with us"

"Montgomery, I don't want the boys to be confused"

"What do mean confused?"

"You know what I mean"

"They're five years old Simmons" Thatcher said "they're just learning to write their names"

"Kids are smarter than you think"

"Their mother died a month before their first birthday" he went on to say "they don't really know what a mother is"

"I'm sorry"

"No problem" Thatcher said "my boys like you and they aren't confused about anything"

Micah didn't know what to say about that other than sorry. Thatcher rarely ever talked about his late wife and she couldn't blame him.

While the first-born twin TJ was his namesake Thatcher Bronson Montgomery Jr; the second born twin Hudson Lawrence Montgomery was named for Lorraine Hudson. A beautiful nod to her maiden name and masculine version of her first name.

She would never be forgotten, and Thatcher always made sure his sons knew the kind and loving woman their mother was.

"If anything Simmons I'd say you're confused about us" Thatcher continued

Micah snorted in response knowing full well what Thatcher meant by that

"Don't flatter yourself Montgomery"

"You don't think I'm handsome?"

"You're my coworker" Micah said "besides I'm not attracted to white men"



"Interesting" Thatcher chuckled "you just let a white man move you into your new apartment and cook you dinner"

"You helped" Micah corrected him "I wasn't some damsel in distress"

"Nothing wrong with being a damsel Simmons you're still a woman" Thatcher said "besides maybe there's a white man that's attractive to you"

"Doubt it"

"You'd be surprised"

"Are you attracted to black women?"

"I am"

Micah wasn't even sure how to address that so she tried to flip the script on him.

"Is that why you helped me?"

"No" Thatcher chuckled catching her game "you're my coworker"


"You are very beautiful woman though"

"Did I ask you what you think of me?"

"Didn't have to you were clearly fishing for it"

Micah bit her lower lip but didn't say anything further.

"Still confused about us?"

She looked up from her now empty plate to see Thatcher looking right back at her with his sea green bluish eyes

She didn't answer but instead eyed the clock and the continued rain outside.

"It's late"

"Nine-thirty is late for you?" Thatcher chuckled

"It is after moving shit around all day"

"Good thing I moved most of that shit around"

Micah ignored Thatcher and made her way to the sink.

"I'm sleeping on the couch?"

"Not sure where else you're going to sleep"

"I remember setting up a king size bed---"

"It's a queen"

"I'm just teasing Simmons"

"Well you tease too damn much"

"Ah there's the stubborn Taurus" Thatcher chuckled "do you have an extra blanket?"

"I'll dig them out"

Thatcher got up and joined Micah at the sink

"You're leaving first thing in the morning"

"That's a shame I was hoping we could do breakfast since we made dinner"

"Pick up a bacon, egg, and cheese from Dunkin' Donuts on the way home"

"Wouldn't be the same"

"I don't give a damn"

"Well I do give a damn"

"Give me your damn plate so we can both go to bed"

"So I am going to bed with you?"

Thatcher grinned and Micah took his plate and gently dunked it in the soapy water

"You're impossible" she grumbled

"You're my best friend too Simmons" Thatcher replied


After the dishes were washed and cleaned Micah went to dig out one of her many blankets and pillows for Thatcher to borrow.

"Alright Montgomery this my favorite blanket so please don't drool---"

Micah stopped mid-sentence when she walked in on Thatcher pulling his shirt off in the middle of her living room.

"What are you doing?"

"Getting ready for bed"

"By taking your clothes off?"

Thatcher chuckled "It's just my shirt Simmons"

Micah didn't why she felt her heart jump slightly when he said that but it did.

"You were saying that this is your favorite" Thatcher said taking the dark green blanket from her

"Yes it is" Micah replied "don't drool on it"

"Oh I would never dream of doing that sweetheart" Thatcher said teasing her a little

"Just keep your saliva in check"

"And you have a pleasant sleep too Simmons"

Micah simply nodded and left Thatcher to settle down for the night.





Thatcher immediately sat up and looked over at the clock he put on the wall.

It read two fifteen in the morning


Micah's cry cut through the entire apartment. Pushing back the blanket Thatcher got up and quickly made his way to Micah's bedroom. He came to see Micah thrashing about almost fighting the bed sheet back.

She was having a nightmare.

She was reliving her twin sister's death.


Thatcher's heart sank. He was on the scene the say Simone Simmons's body was found. Beaten and battered with her throat slit. Murdered by her own fiancée.

He remembered having to hold Micah back the whole time.

Although not appropriate any other time; Thatcher made the quick decision to pull the bedsheet back and lay down next to Micah. He gently gathered her in his arms; she still sobbed and fought him.


"No" Thatcher said gently but firmly "I got you Micah. I got you"

Micah froze in Thatcher's embrace; he rarely ever called her by her first name.

Suddenly embarrassed Micah tried turning away but Thatcher wouldn't allow it.

"Look at me Micah"

There was some hesitation but eventually she did look into his eyes

"Do you always have nightmares about your sister?"

".... I miss her"

"Of course, you do" he reassured wiping her tears with his thumbs

"EH! YOU DONE SCREAMING LIKE A FUCKING BANSHEE?" The neighbor next door snarled


"Montgomery please don't" Micah pleaded knowing how her work partner can get


Thatcher was going to say something back but Micah gently squeezed his hand.

"I'll talk to that asshole in the morning"

"I have to still live here" Micah reminded him

"Forget about him; are you okay?"

"....I'm fine"


"I am"

"Okay Miss Stubborn" Thatcher chuckled gently "you want me to stay or back to couch city?"

".....stay please"

Thatcher took the comforter and pulled it over both of them

"....thanks" Micah whispered despite hating how vulnerable she was right now

"Try to go back to sleep"

It did take a while for Micah to fall back asleep but when she did Thatcher was right there.



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Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.