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02 October 2009 @ 01:40 am
Drabble dump, September edition  

She was pretty impressed, to tell the truth. That is, she was used to outlasting guys at drinking games, no matter what they threw at her. It was just the way it'd always been. Dad went zonking after a few hours, Mom lasted most of the night, and Peter could go a couple of days at that. But Claire was the Energizer Bunny of tequila. That was how it went.

So why was she so damn disappointed that Nathan went down like a stone?

"All my dads are such disappointments," she thought, raising a glass. "Cheers."

Mohinder pulled over, trying hard not to roll his eyes. This had better be Matt playing a prank. He certainly had been driving under the speed limit. "Is there a problem, Officer?" he said, turning toward the open window.

An unfamiliar face blinked back at him. "I'm going to have to ask you to step out of the taxi, sir."

Mohinder shivered. Well, crap. Had he run a red light? What had he missed? This was bad. New York had become so strict with traffic violations now that the city was in debt, and...

"Hands behind your head. Slowly."

What the fuck?

"What is this about?" he asked.

"Just do as I say, sir." No humor in the voice.

Mohinder's patience broke. "Now see here, I think I deserve to know what the problem is," he said, turning back stubbornly to look at the officer.

"The problem," growled the officer, "is that you're a wanted man."

"Wanted!?" Mohinder gasped. "For what? By whom?"

"By me."

And Mohinder turned to see the other officer, the one he'd been marching toward without even facing.

Matt's accomplice shrugged and backed away. "He made me, man, I'm sorry..."

Mohinder grimaced and slammed his shoulder into Matt, laughing the whole way. "You've got a hell of a way of surprising a man at work."

"No good?" Matt said, grinning back. "Then let's take that taxi of yours home and see what surprises I might have for you there."

"Ando, mite mite, ninth wonders rocks dot com. Did you see this? There's fanfic!"

"What? what are you about?" Ando yawned.

"Mr. Isaac's comic," Hiro said. "I Googled it and look, there's fan fiction!"

Ando peered at the screen. "But the people in that comic are real. How can you have real people in fanfic?"

"Haven't you ever been to Mandarake?" Hiro chided him. "There's SMAP doujinshi all over the store."

"Never mind that," Ando growled. "The people in Ninth Wonders are US. Are you telling me we have fans?"

"Ano..." Hiro pointed to one of the links, looking sheepish.

Ando squinted and read out loud. "A love story of two best friends traveling through time together.... love story? Are you telling me..."

"It's really sweet!" Hiro protested. "Even I kind of want to see us all love-love after reading it."

Ando backed away. A lot. Very quickly.

"I said, kind of!"


Torchwood, team fic, everybody starts speaking without censoring their thoughts

Nobody really thought much of it when Jack said "Good morning, Ianto. You'd look wonderful in nothing but that tie." It was the sort of thing Jack tended to say.

It was when he turned to Gwen and said, "How are things with that useless lump of lard you call a fiance? And by the way, fancy a quickie?" that everyone knew something was off.

As Jack lay recovering on the floor from the punch to the gut, Gwen turned to Tosh. "He's not the one I'd fancy a quickie with. You should wear stilettos more often."

"Never mind that," Tosh said, "something's removed our inhibitions, you damn tart who'd sleep with anything."

"It's a problem," Gwen agreed, "and I wonder if you'd take a threesome with Owen, since it's probably the only way you'd ever get him in bed."

"Let me look at recent Rift activity while I fume about the fact that once you sleep with one girl they think you'll sleep with any."

"I'd be up for a threesome," came a voice from the medical pit.

"Well, at least he's unchanged," Ianto mumbled. "Does anyone mind if I molest Jack while he's unconscious?"

Three voices in unison declared, "We mind."

"Hey Sam, have a look at this clipping,
Be careful, the paper is ripping."

"It looks like a job."

"This poor naked slob.
Looks like he was killed after stripping--"

"What's the matter? You stopped on a dime."

"Dude, this doesn't happen all the time,
Either this is a curse,
Or something even worse.
Cause it looks like we're talking in rhyme."

"Oh my God! That's a hell of a switch.
And I'm really suspecting a witch.
Could be dangerous, though."

"Come on, screw that, let's go!
I am gonna kill that heartless bitch!"


"Are you actually talking about sodomy?"

It was the constable's shout that quieted the entire room. Before then, it had been a very discreet conversation in the middle of a very staid, respectable ballroom. But now dancers and drinkers alike looked Jack's way, and he laughed, stood, and addressed the crowd.

"It goes on, you know. It always has. You can't just shut your eyes and pretend it never did."

"A consequence of the sin that's infected the modern world," the constable argued. "In my grandfather's day..."

"I knew your grandfather," Jack declared. "Did you ever notice that boy he kept to prune your orchards? That was a happy-looking fellow. You want to know why?"

The constable staggered back, red-faced.

"How many in here have ever been hunting, or playing at some game, or laboring hard, and you looked across at your fellows and were unable to tear your eyes from the sweat on his brow?" Jack announced, turning in a slow circle. "And ladies, how often do you look at your bosom sisters and actually stare at their bosoms? You can fool your husbands, but not me. So don't you look all shocked!"

"I don't recall inviting this sort of lunatic fringe element!"

The host of the party, a foppish sort of fellow, was pushing his way through the crowd. "I say, you can't just start talking such blasph..."

Jack reached forward and laid a long kiss on his lips. He wrapped his arms around the man, who ceased to struggle after a moment and, to cries of shock from the audience, slowly raised his hands to tangle in Jack's hair, pulling him closer. For a long, long time, they kissed, heedless and uncaring of the society folk around them.

Tearing himself away, Jack held the dazed, giddy man at arm's length. "Look down," he said loudly. "All of you. See what's happening in your trousers, then tell me it's just a fringe element."

And, his greatcoat whirling in his wake, he left the party behind.

Sometimes Mohinder's there when Peter gets home. His big, ugly empty space seems warmer then, and the contents of the fridge aren't a gut-pinching reminder of his loneliness, they're a source of pride against Mohinder's constant carping. "You need to take better care of yourself," he lectures, and Peter sticks his chin out defiantly in the manner of a college kid who's enjoying his newfound malnutrition. The other thing Mohinder carps about is the wall of fame, and Peter has only to remind him about the map with the strings he painstakingly reconstructed from nothing more than memory and sparse notes. Mohinder glares at him. Peter glares back. The huge, empty room seems almost claustrophobic.

Sometimes they order in. Mohinder's got a taste for good New York pizza after several months in the Wild Southwest. He scrapes the cheese off the top of the box, and Peter calls him a slob and unhygenic. Mohinder counters that in case he has a heart attack, he's sure Peter knows a competent paramedic.

Sometimes Peter asks him about what he discovered in Coyote Sands. Mohinder doesn't answer, but his eyes go coal-black and he looks through Peter, or just above his head. And then he smiles and changes the subject.

Sometimes, when they hug goodbye, Mohinder closes his eyes to feel the touch of the soft hair on Peter's arms. He breathes in the warmth of the embrace and just for one silent second wishes. And then he goes.

Sometimes Peter stares at the door for five minutes after he's gone.


the soft accent lilting and gorgeous, the first thing that had captivated Matt as he’d listened to his then-antagonist’s scathing review of his restaurant’s steak. --the original drabble

"Hardly a haven for gourmets, Matt's Grill is the sort of place you go when you want to satisfy your hunger, and you don't particularly care whether the process of doing so is at all pleasant."

Matt read it again.

He paced. He picked up a pair of tongs and clutched it, Psycho knife-style. He dropped them. He read it again.

Mohinder Suresh had made no secret of who he was, coming up to Matt and pleasantly introducing himself, and Matt had done his best to make a meal for him that best showed off his signature cooking. What had his niceness got him? This.

"Order your steak medium-rare at your peril. Steak comes in one setting: charred almost beyond recognition. And don't expect to taste the meat beneath the veritable ocean of sauces and spices. The upside is, your tongue will be numb enough by the end not to taste the positively wilted vegetables that come with."

He'd had a little warning. After an evening full of stealing nervous glances -- at the reviewer's profile as well as his expressions -- Matt had decided to pour on the charm. "So what did you think of your gourmet cuisine?" he'd said, smiling broadly as he walked over.

Mohinder had gotten up. "You," he'd said pointedly, "are not gourmet."

That wasn't the worst of it, but that was the part Matt remembered.

"Should your tastes venture toward the vegetarian side, beware: the salad greens are fully aware they're secondary to the main event, and they've shriveled in shame."

That's it, this Mohinder Suresh was a moron. Maybe he'd been raised on tea and crumpets. God knows that accent sounded that way.

That accent had also done things to Matt that even now he was embarrassed to think about. Especially considering Suresh had just walked into his office.

He was utterly gorgeous. His cheekbones glinted against the light. He was almost hard to look at. Matt tried not to look. He honestly tried.

"Listen," the Suresh fellow said.

"No, you listen," Matt said. "I'm not gourmet, OK? I've never been gourmet. I don't wanna be gourmet. I'm Matt, and this is Matt's Grill, and you can take us or leave us."

"I'll take you," the reviewer said.

"Yeah, that's pretty much what I thought you'd-- what?"

And then those cheekbones actually tinted rose against brown.

"Don't get me wrong, I think your food's abysmal," Mohinder said. "And you probably think the same about my reviews, so I figure that makes it even. Right?" He didn't wait for Matt's response. "But you-- I mean, I haven't been able to get your face out of my mind. That's so rare for me. And I thought if there's any chance-- I'd better come down here and make my case, before--"

Matt kissed him.

Nothing moved in the small office for a good minute.

"I've changed my mind," Mohinder said between labored rasps when they broke apart. "You are gourmet."

Astrid has decided she likes it when Walter flails.

And by flailing, she doesn't just mean waving his arms and legs around wildly, which he often does, but also when he stammers, and when he fidgets, and when he looks like he's got a hot coal in his pants that he's desperately trying to shake loose. All those motions fall under the heading of flailing to her, because the same emotion underpins all of them: Walter is excited. And when Walter gets excited, her world tends to get very interesting.

She will never tell him that these days, when a body is wheeled in, in her mind she's rubbing her hands together. And that when he sends her on a bizarre shopping trip, she spends the whole time frantically cogitating theories as to why he would need five paper clips, a Pacemaker and a stuffed giraffe today. Or that when he reveals his plan, she's thrilled to be surprised yet again.

But she has to stifle a laugh every time he makes an inappropriate comment, or says something that makes Peter snap, "Walter!" or in general acts like the kind of guy you'd expect to emerge from a seventeen-year stint in a mental hospital.

Because Walter loves his work. And with him around, Astrid's starting to feel the same way about hers.

She may just end up flailing herself one of these days.


Astrid blamed the tank.

Olivia kept going back in, kept chasing the white rabbit of her ex-lover into the darkest corners of her mind. And Astrid admired that. It was part of why she had such a crush on Olivia -- in the intellectual sense, of course. She admired her drive, her instinct, her devotion to justice and the truth. The culmination of that sort of crush was to work with her, and Astrid had happily achieved that.

It was just that going back in the tank meant Olivia in her undies. Again. And where Walter and Peter pretended not to even notice -- professionalism first for the rogue and the nutjob -- Astrid, the consummate professional, found herself blushing. Blushing and sneaking looks at Olivia's white stomach, her deerlike legs. The gentle flush of her breasts against wet cotton. And when Olivia was pumped full of the drugs, and they put her in the tank, the last thing Astrid could see was her face, serene, her soul turned inward, floating gently on the surface of the water lighter than a lilypad.

And when she came out of the tank, Olivia was dripping wet, all arms and legs and water. That's when it finally occurred to her: Wet Olivia was starting to make Astrid wet, too.

She was the herald who delivered missives from faraway kingdoms. Fleet of foot and reliable, if somewhat audacious, Daphne never took the time to exchange pleasantries with the royals or their court. Mohinder found her beyond intriguing: her elfin features, her mop of sand-colored hair, her tendency to grin as though she was thinking much too quickly for anyone in the room.

He waited for her once outside the throne room, blocking her passage. "You never stay," he complained.

"Why should I?" She turned her pert nose up. "I have other places to be."

"Just for one night," he pleaded, his eyes turning up through thick lashes at her.

"Oh, I know what you want," she said, peevish. "Sorry, you're too skinny for me. I like a man with some girth. A little oomph."

He stared at her. "Really. Why on earth?"

In answer she slipped quick as a dragonfly through his outstretched arms. "More fun to run rings around them," she said with a genial grin, just before vanishing.