Jim Gordon woke slowly. He stretched and rolled over only to realize that he was alone. He barely opened his eyes to see the tiny bit of sunlight around the heavy blinds.
His conscience and sense of duty combined to stomp on the strong urge just to bury his head under his pillow and go back to sleep. He peered at the large red numbers on the clock on his nightstand. "That can't be two in the afternoon."
He grunted and rubbed his eyes. He found his glasses on the stand. He slipped them on and frowned when he didn't see his cell phone in its usual place right next to where he always put his glasses.
He sat up and swung his legs out of bed to sit on its edge. He bowed his head to rub the back of his neck. "Come on. Get up," he quietly told himself. "You can't stay in bed all day, no matter how much you might want to."
He threw an old blue bathrobe on over his boxers. He opened the bedroom door and that's when he smelled it: eggs, bacon, and coffee. He followed his nose to the kitchen. "You stole my phone."
"No, I borrowed it. You can have it back later." Horatio Caine glanced at him from the stove. He smiled. "I was just about to wake you. Sit down."
Gordon sank into the kitchen chair. "Good morning or should I say afternoon?" he asked dryly.
"You only slept eleven hours."
Caine didn't face him but Gordon could hear the smirk. Gordon rolled his eyes. "I was hoping to get into the office at a reasonable hour today. I've just gotten my office back and there's already a mountain of work waiting for me."
"It'll all be there tomorrow," Caine returned evenly.
"By tomorrow, it won't just be one mountain, it'll be a whole damn chain," Gordon replied, completely deadpan.
Caine stiffened. "So?" he challenged.
Caine turned suddenly. He put his hands on his hips. He was dressed in old jeans and a t shirt and he was barefoot but the stance still got his mood across. "Jim, you need a day where you don't have to be Commissioner Gordon. I already talked to Stephens. We agreed today is for you."
"H--" Gordon tried again.
Caine wasn't about to be interrupted. His eyes sparked as he held Gordon's gaze.. "You survived a military occupation by Bane and his followers. He couldn't stop hunting you cause he knew how important you were, how important you still are."
Gordon's face flushed. "No, I..." he stuttered in embarrassment. He dropped his eyes.
"He tried to shake public confidence in you when he told Dent's true story, but that doesn't matter. Everyone knows you never stopped fighting." Caine crouched down in front of Gordon. He took Gordon's hands. "I've been out and about. The people still trust you." He squeezed and dropped his voice to a low, compelling whisper. "You're the last of their heroes still standing."
Gordon jerked his hands away. "I told you not to call me that," he hissed.
Caine cupped Gordon's face in his hands. He waited for Gordon to meet his eyes. "Batman's dead and so's Dent's reputation. There's no dark knight and no white knight. There's you."
Gordon let out a shuddering breath but made no move to pull away. "No pressure there," he mumbled.
Caine laughed and kissed him. "Never think you're alone."
Gordon returned the kiss. "I don't." He sighed heavily. "I know what I have to do. I'm just so tired."
"So, let me help you."
"Okay." Gordon sniffed. "Something's burning."
Caine jumped to his feet and returned the stove. "Shit! Sorry."
Gordon watched Caine dump the charred remains into the trash. He offered a wry smile. "Nice try. I'm not very hungry anyway, but that coffee smells good."
Caine filled two mugs with black coffee and handed one to Gordon. "I'll try again a little later."
Gordon took a sip. He closed his eyes to enjoy it. "So, if I'm not allowed to work, what am I allowed to do today?"
"Relax. Sleep. TV, but only Abbott and Costello or The Three Stooges. No news. No phone." Caine paused and arched his eyebrows suggestively. "Anything to shut your brain off for a few hours."
Gordon flushed again but for a different reason. He cleared his throat. "Are you going to help me with that?"
"It would be my pleasure."
Summary: If Horatio has anything to do with it, Jim Gordon's getting a day to himself whether he wants it or not.