Told You So
"No! Absolutely not!" Blair backed away from Jim, holding his hands up in protest. He shook his head firmly, his hair whipping about his face.
"You promised," Jim retorted.
Blair glared at him, already realizing with a sinking feeling that he was losing this argument. "Did not."
"Did too," Jim shot back at him. "You said -"
"Children, children!" Simon's voice rang out across the bullpen. He stepped out of his office and approached the bickering pair, giving each a share of his gimlet glare. "Last time I checked, this was a police station, not a kindergarten."
Both men looked rightfully abashed. Jim spoke up first. "Still, you were here when we made the bet, Simon. A free dinner for whoever nailed the perp." He gave Blair a glare of his own and a small shove with his hand. "I won and it's my choice."
Blair rolled his eyes. "I can't believe with all the great restaurants out there, you chose that."
"I doubt you could afford any of the great ones," Jim fired back, a small sarcastic smile curling his lips.
Blair drew himself up to his full five feet eight inch height. "I'll have you know I got a grant yesterday. The rent, including last week's back rent is on the kitchen counter at home."
"Well -" Jim began but whatever he'd been about to say was ambushed by Simon grabbing each of them by an arm and ushering them toward the door of the bullpen.
"Enough!" the captain ordered.
He let them loose and turned to Blair, spearing him with a no-nonsense stare. "You will honor the bet. End of story!" He turned to Jim. "And you will stop gloating about it and stop yanking the kid's chain."
"I'm not a kid!"
"My choice stands!"
Simon sighed and rubbed at his temples. Since Ellison and Sandburg had begun a relationship, they seemed to argue more than most normal married couples. Even he and Joan hadn't argued - He stopped that thought before it got going. He and Joan never seemed to get along at all. He wondered sometimes why they'd gotten married in the first place. He pointed to the elevator. "Go!"
"Yes, sir." Both men glanced at him like chastened schoolboys and did as they'd been bid.
Blair crossed his arms over his chest and couldn't help a slightly self-satisfied smirk from breaking out. "I warned you."
Jim glanced up at him from where he sat in front of the toilet, his face as white as a sheet. "Don't start with the lectures now, Chief."
Blair couldn't seem to stop himself. "How many times have I told you, you might as well?"
"Shoot the lard straight into your veins," Jim finished with him. His face twisted and he looked distinctly uncomfortable as he clutched at his stomach. "Oh god," he moaned, " just the thought -" He shot to his knees with amazing alacrity for someone in so much pain, emptying what little was left of the night's victory meal into the toilet bowl.
Blair felt immediately contrite. What the heck was wrong with him? A little ribbing was fine but where was his empathy? It wasn't as though Jim hadn't nursed him through a bout of food poisoning or the latest stomach bug a time or two. Stepping over to the washbowl, he moistened a washcloth and filled a glass with water. Crouching down next to his lover, he gently rubbed Jim's back.
The vomiting finally abated and Jim slumped back down, resting his head against the wall, his eyes closed, looking like death warmed over. Blair wiped Jim's face with the cool cloth then held the tumbler to Jim's mouth. "Just a few sips," he suggested, "to get rid of the taste."
Jim nodded and swallowed the water, his eyes remaining closed. "Thanks," he said finally, his voice sounding scratchy.
Blair leaned in and kissed his clammy forehead. "No problem. You think you're done? Want to go upstairs and lie down?"
"Hell, yes," Jim said with a sigh. He opened one eye and stared at Blair. "Any chance you can carry me?"
"I don't think so," Blair said with a small smile. If Jim was cracking jokes, hopefully the worst was over. "I so don't need a hernia at my age. How about you lean on me though?" He stood and held out his hand, allowing Jim to pull himself to his feet then wrapped an arm around his lover's waist. "We'll have you in bed in no time."
Blair lay beside Jim, gently massaging the other man's still sore stomach. "Jim?"
"I'm sorry for teasing you tonight. It wasn't fair to do that when you felt so lousy."
"Apology accepted." Jim's voice was drowsy. "No fair ragging me when I feel better though."
"You have to admit I was right," Blair said. He shifted closer to Jim and stroked his hand across Jim's belly. "Does that feel better?" At Jim's nod and small smile of contentment, he continued, "I mean, you win the bet and have the opportunity to go to Marin's or The Rose and instead you choose Wonderburger?" He shook his head sorrowfully.
"Simon was right," Jim whispered. "I was just yanking your chain but when you got all bent out of shape about it, I couldn't back down."
Blair leaned up, resting on one elbow, incredulous. "You what?" He slapped Jim on the stomach more forcefully than he intended. "You asshole! Serves you right then."
"Blair?" Jim groaned. His eyes shot open, his face draining of all color. "Think I'm gonna -"
"Oh, Jim, no! Oh, man!" Blair stared down in disgust at the mess that coated his chest, stomach and nether regions. "Well, thanks."
Jim moaned and lay back down, clutching at his belly. He turned to his side, curling his lanky frame into a ball and began to rock. "You're gonna have to clean it up too, Chief. I don't think I'm up to it."