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Caleb Holmes
Many Happy Returns
Fri Mar 25, 2005 13:22

“Well, I really didn’t think you’d appreciate me out and about in just the robe, love.”

Now that was a mental image!

“I love you so much, Caleb. Even when you’re off shagging Bond girls.” Back in the town car, as the driver sped along side streets and through main thoroughfares, Caleb gaped at that last statement. Not only had she used his name, but she had made reference to… “I meant the movies not—bugger! Would you accept a verbal apology or will we wait until you come back?” He really couldn’t manage a word, still staring at the phone like it was some sort of twisted creation come to life. Somehow, he knew that she hadn’t meant the statement like that, but it was still startling. When he heard a sniffle come across the line, he knew he was in trouble.

“Whoever this is, I’m going to kick your ass for making a goddess frown.” Oh shit!

“Ben, it’s me.” No explanation needed there. “It was just a misunderstanding, that’s all. Let me guess, she stalked out the door to go be alo—” Screech! Oh my god… a cat! Caleb held the phone away from his ear as the shrieks continued. “I guess the kitten arrived.” GINO?! Ah-ha, she read the nametag!

“Caleb. A kitten. I… I don’t have the words.” Oh God, she was crying. Were all pregnant women like this?

“She likes the cat and no doubt will bestow lots and lots of affection once you wing your way back to us. Why don’t you call back tomorrow night – if you can?” It was Ben again, the Voice of Reason in the household. Thank God he was there.

“I’ll try, Ben. Don’t worry about the kitten and Hugh’s allergies, the cat doesn’t shed and his medication will arrive soon.” See? He thought of everything. The town car screeched to a halt, and Caleb piled out of the damned thing, briefcase and all. “I have to go, though. Send my love to her, please? And… take care of her.” Only after receiving an affirmative on both notes did he feel safe enough to end the call and power down the cellphone, slipping it into his pocket as he strolled into the office building that he had frequented over the last few days. Base of operations! And here he was, running late because of traffic. Feck.


Briefcase in hand, Caleb jogged to the elevators and flaming overrode the controls, speeding up to the necessary floor. An angry someone went to open their mouth, until they saw the floor button he pushed, and elected to stay quiet. That was all he wanted, to get there on time, hold the meeting, and be done with everything. To go home! That would be fantastic. First item on the agenda: snog the ever loving hell out of Lucy. Second was to go buy a new bed because he was going to break it to bits during the act. Trying to suppress a smile as he rushed onto the floor, Cynthia met him with a file, matching his long strides.

“You’re late.” Wow, thanks, I hadn’t noticed! “Something just happened; they’re waiting for you in the board room.” Oh shit, that couldn’t be good. Either Cynthia didn’t know what happened, or felt that she shouldn’t tell him. He hoped it was the former and not the latter, because the last thing he needed was loose ends to rid himself of right now. Rob would just love that. Quickly thanking the woman, he almost walked right into the board room, but stopped at the door. Deep breath! Right. Now he could go in.

The sight that greeted him was not a pretty one. He had worked with several of these men over the years, including the Bond debacle, and they were all looking the worse for wear now. One had his arm in a sling; a bloody bandage slapped about his upper arm, while the others looked tumbled and roughed up. The worst of it all was that the men were still in their elected costumes for the affair, looking like your atypical thugs. God give me strength! Taking a quick head count, he realized the principle was missing, and did it again. Oh shit.

“He’s dead.” It was Jenkins, who had always reminded Caleb of a typical FBI agent in the field, which he was anything but. Okay… “There was a shootout. We had to pick sides.” He didn’t need to ask which side they picked. These men were smart, they would have sided with the men they were watching to gain the upper hand and favoritism. “We got out with a few scrapes, but he took one to the back of the head execution style.” Ouch.

“Was anyone able to speak with him before the gathering?” All heads shook glumly in a negative response, and Caleb cursed. Damn it all! They could bring in the other side for the murder of a federal agent, and the attempted murders of the men in this room, but that wouldn’t help them any. “All right. This is what we’re going to do…”

It had gone too far.

Unlike Rob, Caleb was a more hands-on type of person, which allowed us to find him right in the thick of things. He wasn’t so ignorant that believing a costume and some makeup would make him invisible with the plants; all that would do was make the family suspicious. No, he needed to be in a place where he could see everything going on, and react when needed. Which was how Caleb discovered himself on the banks of a landfill, wanting to retch at the sights and smells that the lovely city of New York offered during the late hours of night. Wishing he had brought a mask, or a god damned air freshener to hang around his neck, he ducked his head down to stare through the binoculars again.

He was uncomfortably close to the action, but had to be if anything went wrong. Unfortunately, all the men had been needed for this, and he had to draw from an outside source for backup. A few other men were laid out just like him, from separate vantage points along the way, eyes glued to the squat building before them. Usually the action took place outside on a smoke break, and this was no exception. Just like every other man out here working for the government, he heard the conversation over a wireless transmitter that delivered it all to a small earpiece. But the way things were going, it wasn’t looking pretty.

Wha’ tha’ hell do’ya think you’re doin’, Richie?! Definitely a small time Family, chocked full of idiots and leaks. They would have never made it in the real world anyhow, and Caleb was all too happy to take them down. But when guns were drawn, he inhaled sharply, waiting… waiting… Then the Family member gave a wild laugh and pointed the gun into the air, letting off a round.

“Drunk…” Caleb muttered into the mic, shaking his head. What a load of idiots. Though he really wasn’t sure what to think of the gun being pointed in his direction. Out here at night… they couldn’t see him! Another round went off, and then another; the fool was shooting haphazardly into the night! Shots fired. Repeat, shots fired. Really you jackass? Hunkering down, he turned toward another part of the compound, hearing another shot fired. He would have never imagined that the bloke would’ve gotten lucky though.

“Son of a bitch…” he managed to hiss, biting down on the leather of his gloves. It was either that or scream; whether it was pain or rage, he wasn’t all too certain. Report injuries. God damn it, he was just here to watch! Listening as the men ticked their way down, it got to him, and he was reluctant to answer. Report. “One. In the thigh.” Grunting, Caleb tried to inspect the wound, but had no luck. It was dark, and he couldn’t use a damned flashlight. That bastard got lucky?! Hah, no kidding. “Lucky shot.” At this rate, he was going to become addicted to pain medication. “Continue.”

Caleb had gone so far as to wrap his thigh with excess cloth, hoping he wasn’t about to bleed out or anything like that. Observation continued for another two hours, until things became too heated for anyone in the area. Three more agents injured, those that had played at being thugs, and the operation was over. He had to call it at that point; these men weren’t cut out for this type of work. They didn’t understand what it took to do something like this. “Move in,” he suddenly said over the connection. “Call the meds, and take ‘em all down.” To save face, all the agents would be arrested, but taken off in other cars for the time being. They could play good cop bad cop later, when he was home.

“You did good,” Rob said, one of the first to arrive on the scene after it was secured. Now he was driving Caleb to the military hospital for treatment. If he had been stubborn, the agent would have said give him a Band-Aid. But he wanted this bullet out—of—his—leg! Now!

“How was that good?!” he demanded from the backseat where his leg was propped up. “One agent dead, the rest of them injured to one degree or another. I would not call that good, Rob. I’d call that a screw up.” So he was harsh on himself, but that was how he saw it.

“I handed you a ham.” What?! “It wasn’t a ruse, but we didn’t think we could get anything out of the Family. So I gave it to you.” Now Rob was laughing; true hysterical laughter, full of mirth. “And you fukking blew it apart!” Yeah, that made him feel a whole lot better. “We got information from them we didn’t even know existed. Connections and deals, everything. You did good.” But they were cut off from that line of thought when he screeched up to the emergency room door, on-call doctors and nurses rushing to meet the car. He hated these places.

“Thanks for coming to get me, Ben,” Caleb murmured as he settled down into the passenger seat of the car, giving the man a grateful smile. Lucy was at theater practice right now, and would be for hours, so he had plenty of time to waste. “Let’s go to the theater, okay? We can sneak in the side door and go up to the lighting balcony.” Apparently he had become rather fond of that route ever since Phantom. Hell, sometimes he even missed that show. There was something about being Erik that resonated with him, though he didn’t dare think too much on it.

Half an hour later, Caleb was up on the empty lighting balcony with Ben, watching the performance. Lucy was distracted to all hell, being called down by Richard several times for her inattentiveness. Part of him wanted to walk on stage in a dramatic entrance, but he knew that was simply stupid right now. So instead, after watching his lover for a short while, he dragged Ben out the door to the car. He knew what had to be done, and rapidly began an evil plotting session with the die hard romantic, getting a few valuable pieces of advice. Of course, talk of proposal was introduced by Ben, but Caleb quashed it quickly; he had to see if Lucy could live with his profession before he asked her to stay with him for the remainder of their lives. He just didn’t want her hurt.

By midnight, and with the gay couple’s help, Caleb had managed an arrangement via delivery to shock the hell out of him. The apartment smelled like a florist shop in the middle of spring. She would absolutely love it. Then he kicked the men out. I love you guys to death, but go get a hotel room. Even paid for it! Then tossed them out the door as midnight came around. With the lights turned off, he waited impatiently, knowing how close to the wire he was cutting his time here. But he felt like he was floating, and wasn’t sure if that was due to the painkillers or the sheer thought of having Lucy back in his arms.


“Hello?” Yes! Quickly struggling to his feet, and propping the cane against his leg, Caleb waited for the light to be switched on. He was momentarily blinded by the brightness, his eyes having long since adjusted to the darkness, but still… The look on Lucy’s face was priceless. “Oh my god… Ca—” Screw this! In two steps he was in front of the girl, pulling her into an embrace and a kiss that made his leg twitch! Now that was a warm greeting if you ask me.

“Hi princess…” he managed a teensy bit breathlessly. Couldn’t help it! She tasted good. “God, I missed you. I’m sorry I didn’t call on the way, but…” By now he was leaning on a cane, favoring the injured leg. “Things got a little out of hand.

“Now that I have you though…” Cackle. All his; for the night! Later he would explain what had happened, in as much detail as she wished. But until then he was going to show her how much he had missed her.

Even if it took hours!

  • Whiskers on KittensLucy Avellino, Fri Mar 25 02:45
    “Still wrapping your legs around strange men, princess?” Choke. Nearly expire on the spot. A confused jumble of thoughts and emotion swept ramshackle through her brain at that moment, Lucy only heard ... more
    • Many Happy Returns — Caleb Holmes, Fri Mar 25 13:22
      • Hijinks AwayLucy Avellino, Sat Mar 26 13:01
        “Hi princess…” The two most beautiful words in the English language to her right now, floating on the air despite his next comment. Rather embarassing, really, only noticing now that he was using... more
        • Practice Makes Perfect!Caleb Holmes, Sat Mar 26 23:38
          Life was good. Infinitely happy that he was home, able to sleep in a bed with his lover, take care of the odd little family that he had found, and he was home ! There was only one drawback in his oh... more
          • Stressfully CleanLucy Avellino, Mon Mar 28 18:34
            “Oooh, we’re early!” Well, of course they were early, it was only four o'clock! Caleb had been in a jovial mood all afternoon, however, which she attributed to the steak-and-potatoes meal he'd... more
            • Inciting MayhemCaleb Holmes, Tue Mar 29 00:08
              Broadway! Titter. Fantastic! Giggle. Bravissima! Squeal. Caleb’s head was beginning to hurt. “No, it was very kind…” He could hear Lucy off amongst her own throng; somehow it reminded him of the days ... more
              • Blithering Idiots -R- UsLucy Avellino, Tue Mar 29 23:13
                “Good morning princess. Want some juice?” Not especially, but she wasn't going to argue with the agent when he had his 'work' face on. Big ole scowl meant to frighten the dickens out of your average... more
                • Cloak and DaggersCaleb Holmes, Wed Mar 30 15:40
                  Oh shit, now he was in for it. “You went to New York and didn’t tell me?” Caleb cringed as they entered the apartment they shared, trying to valiantly carry Lucy’s burden of an over weighted duffle... more
                  • Theatre Rats and Street MiceLucy Avellino, Thu Mar 31 00:28
                    “Sweetheart, we’ve got to go. It’s begun.” Tragic films had started with better lines. ‘It’ – that undefined event that had to happen was unfolding now. Lucy glanced around the silent theatre;... more
                    • High NoonCaleb Holmes, Thu Mar 31 02:17
                      “What in the hell happened?!” Practice had been called on account of Gino returning, and now he was plopped at the piano with David seated in the director’s chair, interrogating him endlessly. “Where ... more
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