Lease this WebApp and get rid of the ads.
Crash & Burn
Sun Dec 17, 2006 10:18

“Lucifer, where’s the large suitcase?”

“Back of the closet, top shelf!”

Caleb scraped a hand over the daily growth of beard he somehow hadn’t managed to shave this morning. It had been early, very early, when the phone had begun to ring with poor news. Moira had been the one calling, explaining that Matteo was falling into poor health, and requested his family present. The former agent was no fool; he knew the old man was politely asking for his granddaughter and great-grandson to visit him. He was just baggage.

But, regardless, Caleb had readied everything within a few phone calls between Moira and Vittorio Castelluccio, who was apparently Matteo’s right hand man, aside from his nephew. Only an idiot would not place two and two together, considering the fellow’s last name. So one of the calls he had made that morning was also to John and Sean’s house, though he could have just walked through their adjoining yards, he supposed.

A faint smile curled his lips, amidst the chaotic thoughts and planning, at hearing little James splash his Mommy and giggle like a little loon. Life really was good to them now. Finally dragging two large suitcases out of the closet, Caleb began packing some casual clothing, along with items that would likely be more appropriate, considering what their surroundings would eventually become.

They had been given a choice, either taking military transport which Caleb would arrange, or Matteo’s own. Honestly, it hadn’t been a difficult decision. As much as he had disliked it, Luciana’s grandfather would be able to get them there far more quickly than the government would. Once that was decided, John and Sean immediately set to packing, though there seemed to be a heated discussion going on in the background concerning that. Frankly, the green giant had seemed lost since Jay had left with her child.

There was just one more thing to do. Caleb hardly felt comfortable leaving the house empty, and while Benny was in town, he didn’t seem to be the greatest choice. But thinking of Jay reminded him…

“Nigel!” he practically shouted after a few rings of the telephone. “Listen, I need a favor.”

If this involves harvesting my organs for experimentation, forget it.

“You seriously need to stop watching the Sci-Fi channel. No, Lucifer’s grandfather is sick, Moira called this morning. He wants to see her and James again, before… Well, I need someone to watch the house. You still at Nigel’s place?”

Uh huh, and it’s seriously cramped with a huge Irish boxer that likes to kick your ass every morning. Consider it done, I’ll be there in an hour with my stuff.

“I owe you.”

Everything was happening so fast. Just a few minutes later he had managed to finish packing, laying out clothing for himself and Luciana on the flight over, as well as clothing for the munchkin, who had been dropped into his lap during another round of phone calls so Mommy could go shower. Entertaining his son – that word still brought a goofy smile to his lips – helped Caleb get his mind off of everything for a short while, until the neighbors wandered in through the back door.

At that point Caleb had to relinquish his hold on James so John could have his turn with the little tyke. Despite the man’s large size, he was absolutely amazing with children; something the former agent had witnessed first-hand in the past. Geno made people feel safe. Always competent and in control, no matter the circumstances.

It was a whirlwind of activity, people rushing about, especially once Nigel had finally arrived. The professor was given a run-down of all the activities in the house. Code for security bypass and activation, keys for the automobiles, weaponry locations, and everything else under the sun. The same was given for John and Sean’s home, which he’d visit every so often to make certain everything was fine. Then there was nothing else to do, and a car waiting at the curb for them.

Why did he have such a bad feeling about this?

Just four days ago Nigel had stood on the wide expanse of a front porch, giving a final wave at his brother and family. He wasn’t as silly as his siblings to believe that everything was just going to be peachy keen when they had found out Caleb was still alive, accepting them as his one and only family. But at least the older man had carved out a nice niche for himself.

Now… Now he was stuck sitting house, but at least he wasn’t cramping Nigel any longer. He felt immensely guilty about that, though the fellow professor smacked him upside the head every time he said so. Sacked out on the sofa in the parlor, a mug of tea near to hand, but still a good distance away from the papers that he was currently drowning in. It was times like this that the man remembered exactly why he had no social life, and would likely end up being a stuffy old codger in a tweed jacket.

God help him.

Sighing, Nigel hefted his uncooperative body off of the too comfortable sofa, and back into the kitchen for another mug. At least being here, and most importantly alone, he could wear comfortable clothing; much like the track pants and NYU shirt decorating his torso. His students would never let him live it down if they saw him dressed like this. Shuddering to even think it, the professor shook his head, finally pouring a drink after staring at the wall above the stove in thought.

SLAM! The kettle nearly clattered right out of his hand at the slam of the front door, palms automatically sweating. One, only once, had he been put into a position that Caleb and Devon were intimately familiar with, and the university professor had no desire to repeat anything like it. One person ran down the hall, someone shouting outside… Oh Jesus, Benny and Lara. What the hell were those two fighting about?

Carefully stepping out of the kitchen, Nigel remained quiet so as to watch the ‘conversation’ take place. Or he could have waited in the other room and listened to the shouting from there.

“…You showed up to a concert drunk. You drove me here, drunk. You and I are finished on a personal level.” Holy shit. Nigel was certain his jaw had dropped to the floor; barely even registering the fact that Lara had ran into his shoulder and pushed past, through the kitchen. Wow, when the hell had he been dropped into a soap opera? Sorry, ‘daytime drama’. Pffbt.

Nigel eyed Benny for a few long moments, before the young man made several crude remarks that were definitely not in his character, and went to raid the liquor cabinet. Oh, that was fantastic! No, really. Sighing, he eyed the kettle, and the open back door, before figuring someone else could use it more than he could. No, he could use a couple of valium right now.

“Here, sip at this.” Sighing, he studied Lara; not under any pretenses mind you, he truly was concerned over her mental well-being. Especially considering how Benny was being an absolute ass. “Let me borrow your phone for a sec?” What an odd request. A series of numbers were punched in from memory, and he listened to the odd, hollow ringing.

Lara? Everything all right? Figures Mick would answer Devon’s phone.

“It’s Nigel, and not quite,” he murmured, absently rubbing the singer’s back in an effort to calm her somewhat. “Benny’s over here, and absolutely shit faced.” He could just imagined the ‘And you called me for that?’ expectant look upon his brother’s partner’s face. “Apparently he went to the fundraiser tanked, drove her here tanked. I’m calling in reinforcements.” Like it or not, his brother was huge. Damn it, why did John have to go with Caleb and Lucy?

He WHAT? Devon suddenly shouted in his ear, which led Nigel to believe the two had shared the phone only like those intimate could. There was cursing and scrambling in the background, accompanied by Mick’s calm voice. “We’ll be there in five minutes.” And the line went dead.

“They’ll be here in a few minutes, hon.” Sighing, Nigel eyed the woman, who was slowly calming down her breathing, and wrapped an arm around her shoulders. “At least they can kick his ass like I can’t.” It brought a muffled laugh from him, which he quickly smothered, knowing it was a nervous reaction. But it couldn’t be helped! There went the giggles again. A cough and laugh from Lara, which was better than nothing. “Oh c’mon, look at me! I’m a professor! I still trip over my own feet.” A crash sounded through the open back door, causing him to cringe. “Just a few more min—”

“He-eeey! What’re you doin’ with mah gal, Nige?” Oh shit. Shit, shit, shit. May we repeat this again, please? Nigel certainly was, like a mantra in the back of his mind.

“Benny, why don’t you go grab a drink?” Deter the drunk with liquor, until reinforcements arrived. Terrible idea, and one that wasn’t working either, because his not-so-little brother stumbled down the stone pathway Lucy had so carefully laid out when she moved in, towards the gazebo. “Keep your ass planted right here, Lara,” Nigel murmured in a low tone, shooting her a meaningful glance.

“I to-oo-ooold you, she’s… uh… she’s mine!” Well that cleared everything up nicely, now didn’t it? To stall Bennett and buy a bit more time, Nigel climbed out from beneath the gazebo, blocking his brother’s path at the bottom. “Heeey, I just wanna see my baby-girl.” Oh God, his breath reeked of Captain Morgan’s, and another half-dozen unidentified liquors.

“C’mon Benny, why don’t we go back inside?” Nigel even gave him a helpful little nudge towards the house.

He never saw it coming.

Benny’s fist collided with the side of his head, likely losing a lot of force in the wide arc the drunken man had taken, but it still hurt! Nigel stumbled against one of the support beams of the gazebo, staring at his brother, who was puffed up like a proud peacock. Oh screw that! “Get your ass inside the house. Now, Bennett.” Punctuating his sentence by grabbing the man’s belt, Nigel half shoved and dragged in that direction. At least this time he was able to duck the blow. Now he’d had enough.

Minutes later, the scene wasn’t pretty. Devon and Mick had come rushing through the house and out the back door, to find Nigel straddling Bennett’s chest, warding off his hands like one would a child. After the first blows were exchanged, the drummer had tripped and knocked his head. Nigel never claimed to be a great fighter, but he prayed to God that the young man’s swollen lip was freaking permanent. He didn’t even want to look at his eye in the mirror.

“Get him the hell out of here. Take him to Dad’s, or something. I don’t care,” Nigel muttered, hopping away from that bit of mayhem, only to watch his brother and partner. He didn’t want to know any more, didn’t care. Benny could go dry his ass out and try to make amends with Lara later. “C’mon,” Nigel murmured, holding out a beckoning hand to Lara. “Let’s go see what he trashed.”

  • Tea Totaling Pt 2Laramie, Wed Dec 13 00:42
    Nevertheless, she eased herself into the off-white sleeveless gown, and ignored the suspicion that she looked more like Mae West than the character she'd be portraying. At least Jay wouldn't be... more
    • Crash & Burn — Holmes, Sun Dec 17 10:18
      • The Danger ZoneMichael | Laramie, Tue Dec 19 21:56
        Mick stared down at the prone lump on the ground, vaguely wondering if he’d hit the young man too hard. Devon was still catching his breathe from pulling one brother away from the other, a hard glint ... more
        • More than Traveling WoesHolmes, Sat Jan 13 19:30
          Note: Italicized text is spoken Italian. Caleb hated trans-Atlantic flights. They were boring as hell, especially if you were stuck in a commercial airliner. Luckily for his family, they had not... more
          • NotesLara, Sun Jan 14 23:57
            Omelets. The smell drew her from beneath the covers. Borrowing a tee shirt for modesty’s sake, and deciding that if Nigel was man enough not to mention her nudity then she would do the same, Lara... more
            • Post ScriptsDevon & Caleb Holmes, Mon Jan 15 01:33
              Florida’s Best. Hmph. Nigel had grumbled to himself all the way upstairs, into the shower, and through the entire bloody ordeal. Thankfully the bath was attached to the guest bedroom, so it wasn’t... more
              • Other ScriptsLara | Kitty, Mon Feb 12 14:01
                It was the squeeze that did her in. Nigel was turning into a nice guy right before her eyes, and Lara didn’t like it one bit. She all too clearly remembered how arrogant he’d been during Jay’s... more
                • Happily Ever After?Italia | America, Sat Mar 10 15:49
                  “Moira, you need to sleep .” Caleb was beyond frustrated, and couldn’t show it one wit. His sister was running herself ragged, worn threadbare thin by taking care of Matteo. The former agent would... more
Click here to receive daily updates