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Against The Music by Kim Dunne [ - ]
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Category: CSI - Ship Ahoy! > Catherine/other male
Characters: Catherine Willows, Gil Grissom, Jim Brass, Nick Stokes, Other, Sara Sidle, Warrick Brown
Rating: R
Genres: Action/Adventure, Case, Drama, Pre-relationship
Warnings: None

Summary: A local disc jockey is killed at a radio station and the crew begin to investigate his girlfriend and his co-workers, one of whom Catherine becomes involved with.





Walking through the building, it was quiet. Maybe a little too quiet. They were used to it being quiet on the weekend, especially on the overnights, because there was only one person in the entire building, but this was different. This was an eerie kind of quiet. She was headed to the studio that she worked in and suddenly the scent of blood lingered. Down the hall there were smears of blood on the wall and headed down the hall. Walking slowly down the hall she entered the studio and slumped there in the chair was her boss. She covered her mouth with her hand and slowly walked around the chair and picked up the phone on the other side. With shaking hands she dialed 9-1-1 and told them what she found.

~~~~~~

"What do we have here?" Catherine Willows asks as she walks up to Gil Grissom in the crime scene at the radio station. Accompanying her were co-workers Sara Sidle and Nick Stokes.

"Dead radio DJ, found by the girl standing over there." he says pointing to the other side of the room where a younger girl stood talking to a police officer. "She called 9-1-1, I haven't talked to her yet. She came in to work the overnight shift and found her boss slumped in the chair, she didn't touch anything I guess."

Catherine looks at Gil and Sara. "Sara and I will talk to the girl." Gil nods and Nick follows him down the hall to the crime scene.

Catherine and Sara walk up to the shaking girl. "Hi, we're Catherine Willows and Sara Sidle from the crime lab, can we ask you a few questions?"

"Sure." she says tentatively.

"What's your name?" Catherine asks

"Michele Johnson."

"How long have you worked here?" Sara asks

"Almost a year, mostly overnights, but I've been on the weekends on day shifts sometimes."

"Did you notice anything when you first walked in?" Catherine asks

"Well it was weird because it was eerie and quiet, and that was unusual to feel that way, but I thought it was just me hating working here by myself so late at night."

"Are you the only person in the entire building that late?" Catherine asks

Michele nods and says "Yeah, I've always hated that, but the security has always been great, and there's never been a problem before, and none of us have ever expected there to be a problem. We all loved our boss."

"What was his name?" Sara asks as she was taking notes.

"John Gordon, he's run the radio station for about 3 years, and he's gotten us out on top, so I don't know. I mean we have problems with stalkers sometimes, but he's never mentioned anything to me about a stalker recently, I don't know if he's mentioned anything to anyone else."

"Okay, well thank you Michele, do you mind if we contact you if we have more questions?" Catherine asks

"No not at all, feel free to."

"Thank You." Sara says as the two of them walk away.

"So what do you think?" Sara asks Catherine

"I think we tackle the crime scene and see who hated this guy enough to either have him killed or stalk him." Catherine responds.

Catherine and Sara join Nick and Grissom in the search for clues to this murder.

~~~~~~

"Hey guys," Catherine calls out across the hall to them in the studio. "I have a theory."

"Let's have it." Grissom says with a slight smile. She always had the first theory and a lot of the time most of it checked out right.

"I think he came in here late last night unexpectedly. Then he saw someone behind him and started to run toward the wall and that's when he was stabbed, hence the blood marks down here. Then he was put in the studio chair slumped over and re-dressed..."

"Wait a minute...re-dressed?" Grissom asks

"Yeah, he couldn't have dressed himself that way by himself which is why I figure, there was someone else here and potentially another victim or an eyewitness slash suspect. I figure he was having sex and was interrupted by a stalker or a jealous boyfriend."

Grissom had to admit that sounded good. Potentially right too but it upset him that he didn't notice the body being re-dressed.

"So where's the evidence?" Grissom asks

Catherine frowns and says "Don't be such a jack ass Gil." and then she walks down the hall. Catherine rounded the corner and almost ran straight into a guy that was walking quickly down the hall.

"Hey!" Catherine says surprised. "You can't be in here, this is a crime scene."

"So I heard." The guy says with a frown as he tries to walk around Catherine.

Catherine grabs him by his shirt and says "Hey are you deaf? You can't be in here."

The guy then takes a swing at Catherine to try to get her off of him. Catherine ducks and swings the guy around so she had him in a headlock with his arm twisted behind his back against the wall.

"Hey hey hey." The guy protests. "I give up, I'm sorry."

Catherine eases up on him and guides him to an empty office. "Sit down." she commands. The guy sits and Catherine continues. "What's your name?"

"Mark Richards."

"And what are you doing here?"

"I work here. I'm the morning DJ on that station."

"Okay, did your boss mention anything about having any stalkers recently?"

Mark shakes his head, "No, he just had his girlfriend, if anything you should ask her."

"Who's his girlfriend?" Catherine asks

"Michele Johnson. She also works here."

Catherine looks at Mark like he had two heads. "Are you sure that's his girlfriend? She's the person that found the body. She didn't say that they were 'dating' Are you sure they really are an item?"

Mark nods "Yeah, I've seen them making out before in the studio, I know they are dating. It's weird that she didn't mention it. She's a good kid generally."

"What do you mean by that?"

"Well she's been in trouble before for having sex in public places. I think that's what attracted John to her. He's got a wild streak himself."

"Have you ever seen them having sex here in the studio or in the building at all."

"Nope, I can't say I have, but I'm not around them when their together because I can't stand to watch it. It's disgusting, plus I don't like watching 'happy' couples."

"How come?" Catherine asks

"Ever since my girlfriend and I broke up I just haven't liked to see people happy. I know it's wrong but I'm not happy...so I don't know."

"I know that feeling." Catherine says looking down for a minute as she felt Mark's eyes watching her. She looks back up and locks eyes with Mark briefly before saying "Uh...Okay, well I guess that's all I need for now, but I'm afraid you'll have to leave now, I'll be in touch."

"I hope you are in touch." Mark says as he stands up and locks eyes with Catherine as he left the room and out of the building.

Catherine sighs. This is the last thing she needed, to get involved with a suspect in her case. Grissom would have her head for this.

Sara walks in and says "Gris wants us to head back to the lab to process the evidence we have now."

Catherine nods and follows her co-worker out of the building to their black Tahoe.

~~~~~~

Gil was deep in thought in the radio station's studio when Nick interrupts his thoughts. "Grissom, you might want to come see this." Grissom followed Nick down the hall to the station's break room. There lying in a pool of blood was a young lady.

"Our second victim." Nick says looking at Grissom

Grissom says "process her, then join Sara and Cath at the lab to get results."

Nick and Warrick start taking pictures and collecting evidence to return to the lab.

Grissom walked back to the studio and started in there. He gathered what felt like hundreds of finger prints on the board from all of the DJ's. He gathered several hairs off of the chair and floor. He collected several odd looking papers from around the studio. Lastly on the chair he used his ultraviolet light and found out that what Catherine said made a hell of a lot of sense. Seminal fluids were evident on the chair. So he collected them to see how fresh they actually were. A few hours later, he returned to the lab with his evidence to start processing.

~~~~~~~

"Finger prints are a big bust. Obviously they don't have anyone working there that has been previously convicted of any type of crime. Nothing comes up, except one, but it kind of makes sense too. Michele's fingerprint came up and as we learned from Mark, she dated the victim, and worked there as well. She also has been convicted of minor sexual related crimes." Catherine reveals to Sara.

"Who's Mark?"

Catherine and Sara look behind them to see Grissom standing there looking at the two of them.

"Mark is the morning DJ on the station. He was in the station yesterday and tried to attack me, but we got things figured out and under control. He told me that Michele Johnson and John Gordon, the victim, were dating for several months. She was convicted with some public sex offenses." Catherine fills her boss in.

"Why was he there?"

"Because he works there." Catherine says

"Did you process him?" Grissom asks

"Gil, he's not a suspect in the case."

"Catherine, emotions can not be a part of your cases. Find him, process him, return to the lab, and let the evidence show that he is not a suspect." Grissom says

"Gil, I've been here for long enough to know what to do."

"Then interpret the evidence Catherine." Grissom says as he walks out of the room giving Catherine the Grissom look that everyone always feared.

Sara looks at Catherine and watches Catherine's anger boil over as she throws a coffee pot across the room. It shatters on the floor and Catherine storms out.

Nick and Warrick walk in after Catherine stormed out and look at the broken pot on the floor and then they look over at Sara with quizzical looks on their faces.

"What's going on?" Nick asks

"Well, let's just say that Grissom and Catherine are having issues with each other again." Sara says stooping down to clean up the broken coffee pot.

~~~~~

"Grissom!!" Sara calls down the hall to her boss.

Grissom turns around "What Sara?" he asks

"Have you seen Cath? She was supposed to meet me an hour ago and I haven't heard from her."

"Haven't seen her since the break room this morning." Grissom says as he turns around and walks away.

The shrill sound of Sara's cell phone cut the silence after Grissom left. "Sidle" she answers

"Sara, it's Catherine. I'm sorry, I'm tied up at the radio station for a little while, I'll meet you back at the lab in an hour."

"Is everything okay?" Sara asks her co-worker.

There was a moment of silence which made Sara believe that it was not. "Oh yeah, everything's fine, I'll see in an hour." She hung up the phone and Sara stared at her cell phone. She shrugged her shoulders and walked down the hall. Catherine could take care of herself.

~~~~~~

Catherine was not liking this one bit. The radio station was completely empty but the eerie silence that came along with it was loud enough. She shivered a little even though it was not a bit cold out.

"Hey, I thought I saw your car out there." a voice said behind her.

Catherine jumped about a foot and whirled around.

"Sorry, didn't mean to scare you." Mark said.

"No, no that's okay. I just wasn't expecting anyone to be in here. Actually I'm glad you're here."

"Well, good because I'm glad to see you here too." Mark said with a dazzling smile.

Catherine sighs and says "No, that's not the reason." she pauses for a minute. "I'm getting hell from my boss for not processing you because you're a likely suspect."

Mark's smile vanishes, "Oh, it's like that..."

"Mark come on, you know I wouldn't do this if I didn't have to."

"No, you know what I know. I know that you probably haven't had a descent relationship in years because of this damn work that you do. You can't get involved with anyone because to you their all suspects. If you took my advice and followed up on Michele, his girlfriend, you might actually get somewhere."

"Mark..." before Catherine could finish her statement, their was a third person in the room and she leveled her gun at Catherine's head.

"Well well well. Mark I thought I warned you not to get involved in this investigation, but now since my cover's blown, I guess you're all going to pay for it."

"Michele, put the gun down. You're already in enough trouble, don't make it worse for yourself."

"This place is not going to miss one investigator and one DJ. Don't try to talk me out of it tootsie, you're coming with me. Now get up and put your badge, your purse, and your gun on the ground now!!"

Catherine did as she was told and walked with Mark and Michele out the side door with a gun leveled at her head.

~~~~~~

Sara finally got really worried an hour later. She had been worried since the phone call, but now she knew she needed to find Grissom and get down to that radio station.

Grissom was in his office looking at his bugs that were on display.

"Gris, we've got a problem."

"With the case?" he asks without looking up.

"No, Cath called me an hour in a half ago and she said she'd meet me here in an hour and she's not here."

"She's probably just running late Sara, you always get worried over nothing."

"Grissom you didn't hear that phone call, something sounded wrong. Maybe I'm totally off base here, but please something doesn't feel right."

Grissom finally looks up. "Okay, let's go."

The car ride over to the radio station was very quiet. Grissom kept his eyes on the rode and drove. Once there they saw the CSI Tahoe sitting there right by the side door.

"See I told you everything was okay." Grissom says climbing out of the car.

The two of them walked in to the radio station and listened. Nothing was heard. They walked in to the station and Grissom felt his stomach drop. There sat Catherine's badge, purse, and gun in a neat little pile, but no Catherine was there.

"Shit shit shit." Grissom says looking around. "Sara call everyone in, we have a missing officer."

Sara picked up her walkie-talkie "Missing officer, I repeat all units be alert, we have a missing officer. All units please respond, be on the look-out for CSI Catherine Willows, missing for about one hour."

~~~~~~

Catherine was devising a plan as they traveled to God knew where. She was glad she had called Sara earlier, she knew everyone was looking for her now. Michele was constantly on the cell phone with someone. They had been driving for about an hour. She was trying to hear what Michele was saying on the phone.

"Yeah, I got the nosy little bitch." she pauses "Yeah, him too. We're going to the condo." she pauses again "Nah, no one's gonna miss her. See ya, Bye."

A minute later they pull into a driveway of a large house. Catherine and Mark were led at gun point out of the car and into the house. Catherine was starting to worry. What was she going to do to get out of this.

Once inside the house Catherine takes a chance on something, "Michele, do you really think you're going to get away with this?"

Michele laughs and says "No one else knows I killed my boyfriend and his mistress. Everyone at the station thinks I love him dearly."

"But you know you don't want to do this."

"Right now I have no choice." Michele says

"You always have a choice of what to do." Catherine persisted

"Listen tootsie, I've killed two people, and it's about to become four, so stop trying to delay me, it ain't working."

Mark was silent the entire time, but he knew what he was doing. Catherine and him exchanged a quick look. Catherine kept turning and talking at the same time. Michele turned toward her each time and her back was towards Mark. Mark quickly jumped on Michele's back and took her to the ground. Catherine grabbed her gun and leveled it at Michele as Mark tied her up with some rope on the ground.

Catherine reached over and grabbed the phone. She watched Michele as she dialed the familiar numbers.

Mark held on to Michele the entire time not turning his attention for a minute.

"Sidle." Sara answers on the first ring.

"Sara, it's me."

"Catherine, where the hell are you, you had us scared shitless."

"Yeah, like it was all a big plan. Look Michele did it. She took Mark and I here, I don't know where we are though. She said it's her condo. We've turned the tables on her for the time being. I've got her gun. Just be careful when you guys get here."

"Alright Cath, hang in there. We'll find out where her condo is."

"Okay, see you in a bit."

She hung up the phone and walked back over to Michele and Mark.

"You guys can't do this. Hold me here against my will." Michele says

Catherine just shakes her head at her, not letting the gun waver as she settles in.

~~~~~~

Sara and Grissom stood outside the condo door. The police officers were called in and they bust down both the front and back doors.

As soon as they appear Michele starts crying "Thank God you're here. They are holding me here against my will. Please help me."

Grissom and Sara run over to Catherine.

"Cath, you okay?" Grissom asks the CSI.

"Yeah we're fine."

The CSI's watch Michele be escorted out screaming at the top of her lungs "I didn't do anything! They did it!"

Mark walks over as Catherine hands Michele's gun over to the officers. "I don't think anything was fired out of it. Not by me anyway. I don't know what she did before she took us." The officers nod and walk out.

"Grissom this is Mark, and Mark this is my supervisor, the guy I was telling you about." Catherine says

"Oh yeah, the guy that thinks I need to be processed." Mark says with a slight smile.

"Look Catherine..." Grissom starts.

"No Gil, I want you to hear this." she looks down for a minute "I'm sorry that I let the way I feel affect the way I do my job. I know that's not acceptable. That's why I went back to the radio station. I wanted to find Mark and process him, but by the time I did, Michele came in."

Grissom holds up his hand indicating for her to stop. "Cath, I know you have it tough being a single mother with a terrific daughter like Lindsey. I get a little carried away when anyone in my department lets a relationship or a feeling affect the way they do their job. I don't want you to not have relationships when working as a CSI. I just want you to clear that person as a suspect first. That means all physical evidence, not just a gut feeling you have. I know I've taught everyone that gut feelings usually turn out right, but we have to let the evidence tell the story. That's all I'm asking."

Catherine nods and says "Thanks Gris." Then she takes Mark's hand and walks out of the condo.

Grissom sighs and looks at Sara "You think she forgives me."

"Yeah Gil, anyone would." Sara says leaning over and giving him a kiss on the cheek.

Grissom smiles and takes Sara's hand and walks out of the condo. He had a hard job trying to be open-minded about everyone that he came in contact with. But he knew how Catherine felt. He sometimes let his personal relationship with Sara affect the way he thought about things. He loved all his CSI's and he vowed to himself that he would be a little more objective about things from now on...besides, no one wanted an up-tight boss.