Peter Grodin considered himself one of the luckiest bastards in Denver. His life was going great. He was happy with his apartment (until the next time the water pipes broke, that is), he had an amazing girlfriend, Mary Johnson, and he had few, if any, problems with his job. Of course, having your boss also be your closest friend might make it easier for him.
He'd known Elizabeth Weir for a long, long time. Longer than just about anyone in the Denver area, except for Judges Ernest and Catherine Littlefield. Peter had met her when she was working as an ADA in Colorado Springs, fast becoming one of the rising stars in the legal profession. He'd started out as just one of the many interns that surrounded her, but for some reason, she had singled him out and kept him close.
In the beginning, theirs had been strictly a working relationship, colleagues who had didn't have the desire to stab one another in the back at the first opportunity. He had enjoyed working for Ms. Weir on her various cases, as well as being able to share in the triumphs they had worked so hard to achieve. Over that time, however, he often saw something else in her eyes, a loneliness that was evident in her pretty green eyes despite the walls she kept up around herself.
Slowly, the two began to grow closer, spending more time together. They kept it discreet, having no wish to incite the gossip hounds into blabbing about them and turning them into something they were not. Peter was well aware of Elizabeth's physical appearance, she was beautiful, but he just wasn't attracted to her, not in that way. But the closer they grew, the more he learned about Elizabeth, seeing what lay below the serene and stern veneer of ADA Weir.
He learned that she was married, much to his surprise. He'd seen her attend several functions and Elizabeth had always come stag, never hanging on anyone's arm. What surprised Peter the most was that he recognized the husband's name: Simon Wallace. Wallace was a junior partner in one of the most prestigious law firms in Colorado Springs, known for both the fact that he was believed to be well on his way to making senior partner and for the rumors of the various mistresses he kept hidden throughout the city, if not the entire state. Not that anything of the latter was known for fact, but rumors had to start somewhere.
When Elizabeth spoke of her husband (a exceptionally rare occurrence), there was never any love in her eyes, only resigned acceptance. She confided in him, telling him that she had only married Simon on her father's wish, before he died. And although Peter did not tell Elizabeth, he was horrified at the very thought. Albert Weir was another name that had been well-known in Colorado Springs, being a successful and innovative contractor. Obviously, as brilliant as he'd been, he must not have been aware of what he was asking his only daughter to do when he asked her to marry Simon Wallace.
Eventually, Peter worked his way up through the DA's office, landing himself a spot as Elizabeth's aide. He hadn't been there a month when Elizabeth had been offered a promotion to the bench. Though, the only drawback - if it was one - was that it would require her to move out of Colorado Springs and north to Denver. Elizabeth wasn't about to turn down such an opportunity for anything.
Most certainly not for her husband. Wallace hadn't liked the idea at all, demanding that she think about how it would look if he was husband to a judge for the state of Colorado. Bad enough that she was an ADA. Peter, who had agreed immediately to accompany Elizabeth to Denver, knew that it was the final straw for her. She pulled out the big guns and demanded a divorce. Of course, as much as Wallace complained about his wife's profession, he disliked the idea of losing her share of the money they both brought in even less. He fought her until she threatened to air all of his dirty laundry, and she had plenty of that. If the legal society caught wind of the crap he'd been pulling, Wallace would have been finished. With no other choice, Wallace agreed and the divorce proceedings went ahead, albeit slowly.
The move from Colorado Springs to Denver was hectic and chaotic for both Peter and Elizabeth, but it quickly proved to be worth it. Elizabeth had friends in Denver, such as the Supreme Court Judge, Ernest Littlefield, and his wife, Judge Catherine Littlefield, and even a few others, all of whom were willing to help her settle in.
Things finally seemed to be settling into a nice, comfortable routine for them when Elizabeth's path crossed with one John Sheppard from Carter, Hammond, and O'Neill. At least, that's when Peter pinpointed the change. Something settled over Elizabeth, a cloud that was secretive, and yet she never seemed happier. There was a bounce in her step that had not been there before and Peter knew that it was more than just finally signing the divorce papers, forever freeing her from that bastard Wallace.
Peter was no idiot, and he had a fairly good idea of what went on in her chambers when Sheppard went in there, whether she summoned him or he made an appointment to see her. Not that he'd ever tell. He'd spent too long watching his friend's back to ever betray her trust like that. Her actions may not have been wisest ones, but if it kept her happy, then he'd do whatever he could to keep her that way.
The sound of soft laughter coming through the door to Elizabeth's chambers didn't even phase him anymore. The door opened and John Sheppard stepped out, looking as he always did in his trademark rumpled suit. There was a faint smile on his face, not out of the ordinary for anyone else that might see him, but to Peter, it spoke volumes.
As did the fact that Elizabeth stood in the doorway, watching him leave as she pretended to sort through the mail he had quickly handed her. Elizabeth Weir was in love, whether she admitted it to herself or not. Peter's known her too long not to see it. And if the look in Sheppard's eye was anything to go by, the feeling was returned.
Peter shook his head inwardly. He'd known life in Denver would be interesting, and he didn't regret coming at all. Just as his friend had found something special, so had he.
Life was good.