by ljc


Summary: Simon's POV again.

Warnings, Ratings: None except Simon's a bit tipsy and he thinks a bad word or two. Maybe PG.

Disclaimer: All characters, places, and objects from The Sentinel belong to Pet Fly Productions, UPN, Paramount and the SciFi Channel. No money is being made. No copyright infringement is intended. This story was written by ljc with the love of the show in mind.


Simon had partaken of an extra beer or two, to his chagrin. It was a good thing there was a designated driver. Tonight it was Henri. 'H' was one person that had no problem having a good time even without the effects of liquor. This party was a good idea. With exam results posted, they'd all been glad to celebrate Sandburg's coming graduation from the Academy.

For the moment, Simon sat alone on the balcony. He was nursing his last beer ... and it 'was' his last beer this time. He hadn't gone into the cool night air with the intention of letting his troubled thoughts intrude, but that's what seemed to have happened. Everyone else had drifted to some other corner, while the beer seemed to have loosened his restraint on his own thoughts. They usually allowed only brief journeys into the 'sentinel zone', no pun intended. Hell, he could make a pun if he wanted to ... 'the sentinel zone'. Ha. Now he 'knew' he'd drunk too much. What he really needed was to sleep it off, but he knew his thoughts wouldn't ease up on him, not tonight.

This probably wasn't the time to dwell on hard questions, and harder answers. Tonight, he didn't want to be one of the 'inner circle'. It was just too hard, especially when he was the one that denied himself complete entry. But what would he do if what they all feared ... happened ... and Blair couldn't find the answer to the latest sentinel crisis? The whole mess would land in 'his' lap. And he just didn't want to be responsible ... and he 'would' feel responsible. He didn't want to lose either, or both, of his friends to something he didn't understand the first thing about!

That's why he'd held back. Not because he didn't want to do his part, but because he didn't know if he could 'know' his part ... if that made any kind of sense. He and Megan were the only two who knew the sentinel secret. He knew Sandburg had approached Megan as well. “Just in case,” he'd said. Just in case ... Blair couldn't come up with an answer to help Jim. That would devastate Sandburg. Or just in case ... Blair wasn't there ... to help Jim. Or what if, God forbid, when even Jim's abilities weren't enough to 'bring Blair back'. And Simon wasn't even sure where Jim had brought him back from. Heaven? Hell? Limbo? Or something else entirely too strange that Simon definitely didn't want to know about ....

But that wasn't really true any more, was it? He certainly had never been 'quiet' about being upset with them, or anything sentinel-related that had disturbed his 'routine'. He knew his own honest reactions had been the cause of their hesitation to reveal more to him. There were things that they had left unsaid, that perhaps were better revealed. He'd had time to think, and he was a little ashamed of himself. He knew he needed to understand, because who else would, if not him?

Somehow he had to let them know that he was willing to do what he could instead of playing the blustering fool. Instead of wrapping himself in 'denial', as if that would protect him from his duty. And after all, what secrets could be so hard to hear, from these two men that had placed their reputations, their lives, their sanity on the line for him more than once, for his son, too, and their colleagues ... comrades ... in the Major Crimes Unit.

This was a turning point in their partnership. They were going to become 'official' partners, instead of being just an extraordinary cop and his singular ridealong observer. Maybe Simon's 'guardianship' needed to grow also. He knew, in his heart, about friendship, and about duty. Maybe the 'inner circle' needed three fully informed members, because Jim and Blair had given enough. They deserved at least the comfort of knowing that 'someone' knew 'everything'. In case the worst happened ... especially if it happened to only one.