Twelve Times Lucky

By

Annie

EMAIL: Annie

It's been a blast being part of the nicest list around. I've been here since 2003 and don't plan on leaving anytime soon. I've made the best friends here and continue to make new ones. So, Happy Anniversary SA. I love ya!

"You know, Jim" Blair began in a suitably serious tone, "this is starting to become monotonously regular."

Jim spared a quick glance down at him, his lips twitching up in an empathetic smile. He flicked his eyes back up and sighted along the barrel of his Sig Sauer again, his hands completely and utterly steady. "What has, Chief?" he asked conversationally.

"Oh, you know this whole 'Blair getting held hostage by the bad guy' stuff." Blair twisted his head up and around, wincing as the man behind him tightened his grip on his hair and dug the barrel of his gun deeper into the soft flesh of his throat. "I'm thinking of taking out hostage insurance," he told the man mournfully, "but the premiums would be hell to pay."

The perp grinned nastily at him. "You do this often? Find that hard to believe, a little nerd like you."

"Oh yeah, man." Blair nodded as well as he could given the meaty hand that felt like it was tugging his hair out by the roots and the cold metal gouging a probably permanent furrow in his neck. "You wouldn't believe the number of times this has happened to me since I partnered up with Ellison there."

"You're a cop?" The perp moved a step back, yanking Blair with him, while keeping a wary eye on the cop in front of them. "Riight. Sure you are, Tiny Tim. And I'm Princess Leia." The man snorted a laugh.

"Did I say I was a cop?" Blair asked, watching as Jim matched their step back with a forward one of his own. "No way, man. I mean, all I did was ask to hang around the PD so I could write my dissertation on closed societies, using the police force as my model, and next thing you know I'm doing Ellison's paperwork, fixing the captain's computer and sorting out the love lives of the entire Major Crime Unit. When I'm not being the flavor of the month for 'Hostages-r-us', that is."

"You got it rough, kid," the man said. "I almost feel sorry for you."

"Yeah. I feel sorry for you too," Blair remarked casually as he felt the man back up into the formidable presence of Captain Simon Banks and heard the familiar growl of "Cascade PD. Freeze!"

He felt the gun jerk beneath his chin and twisted, throwing himself to one side, feeling the sight on the barrel slice through his skin. There was a loud booming noise that sounded like a jet breaking the sound barrier and then he hit the ground and the world fogged over.

~oOo~

"Hey, Chief, you with me? You hear me, buddy?"

Blair opened his eyes and frowned up at his partner. "Of course, I hear you, Jim. I'm not deaf… just… ouch!" He rubbed a hand over his aching forehead.

Jim levered him up and propped him against the car.

"You okay, Sandburg?" Banks crouched next to them. He held a handkerchief in his outstretched hand. "You might want to put some pressure on that," he said, motioning toward Blair's neck.

Blair reached out, only to have his hand batted away as Jim's large one took the cloth and pressed it to the gash.

"You'll live, Junior," he said, grinning into Blair's face.

Blair smiled woozily back at him, seeing the relief in Jim's eyes. "So how many times is it now?" he asked, wincing as Jim kept up the firm pressure.

"Twelve in the last three years," Jim replied. He pulled the cloth away. "It's stopped bleeding but you'll need to go to the ER. You were out for a couple of minutes, probably got a concussion."

"Twelve what?" Banks asked, looking perplexed.

Blair looked up as his most recent captor was hauled past them, looking suitably hangdog. "Twelve times since I started working with Jim that I've been held hostage or been kidnapped."

"Twelve times?" The hostage-taker pulled to a stop and looked down at them. "Jesus, man, you weren't kidding. You need to find yourself another job."

"Let's go, loser," Henri Brown said as he yanked the man along to a squad car.

"Come on, Chief, let's get you taken care of. And no, you cannot come home tonight. I'm not staying up all night waking you up every hour to see if you remember who the President is. I've done that nine times already in the past three years. Enough is enough."

"Come on, Jim. You know I hate hospitals." Blair allowed himself to be pulled to his feet and stood, wobbling uncertainly as Jim hooked an arm around his waist before he could hit the sidewalk again.

Banks moved to his other side and ushered him towards Jim's truck.

"Hey, Simon, what's the date today?" Blair asked as he was helped up into the passenger seat and strapped in.

"March 20th. Why?" Banks replied.

"Hey, Jim, I knew it, it's our anniversary." Blair grinned over at his partner as Jim climbed behind the wheel. "You wouldn't leave me in the hospital on our anniversary, would you?" he wheedled.

"Oh for crying out loud, Sandburg. Fine. I suppose you'll expect me to let you lie on the couch while I feed you chicken soup and Tylenol too." Jim threw the truck into gear and gave Simon a long-suffering look as he pulled away from the kerb with a rubber-burning squeal.

Banks shook his head and grinned as he watched the truck roar off toward the hospital. He'd take good odds it would go down just the way Sandburg wanted. "Happy anniversary, guys," he murmured.

The End