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new characters belong to me. Please request permission before using them.

Boredom (or Boys and Their Toys) By Laury

He was bored. Bored...bored...bored....

He couldn't remember the last time he had EVER been so bored. Well, that wasn't REALLY true...he could remember it...he just didn't want to right now....

So he didn't. Memories.... HIS memories were not generally very pleasant... what few memories he had, anyway.... So for the moment, THIS MOMENT, he chose to NOT think at all.

So he dropped his head to the desk .....and sighed. Eventually, he lifted his head and placed his chin upon his folded arms as he gazed around the room. He thought to himself, "What to do.....what to do.... What CAN I do?"

Another sigh escaped his lips..... Then he saw it....REALLY saw it. It was

just sitting there on the desk. SLOAN'S desk.

He was quite aware of her fondness for small toys and gadgets. And he knew

that she and Ed often traded such things between them for just this type of occasion....BOREDOM.

So he reached out and lightly touched the small object....and jumped. IT JUMPED. Well, sort of, anyway.... It actually HOPPED instead of jumped.

He gazed around the room.... wondering if anyone had heard the noise the object made.... No one seemed to. Actually, no one was even around.

So he touched it again. This time it didn't do anything. So he picked it up and examined it.

It was a duck...perhaps "ducky" was a better term. He had heard Ed use it several times and the term always seemed to make Sloan laugh. Was it just the silliness of the word? He wondered...

This "ducky" was made of light plastic and was painted or colored bright yellow. It's feet were bright orange and the tiny wind-up mechanism was white.

He touched it with reverence...after all, it wasn't his toy. So he should be careful, right? Careful, hmmm.

He placed the "ducky" in the palm of his hand, and balanced it there until he turned it around with gentle fingertips. His left eyebrow shot up as the tiny object made another sound. It seemed so loud in this small room....

But no one was around and no one came to see what all the noise was about....so he continued to hold the tiny object in the palm of his hand.

Sitting straight in the chair, he leaned forward to glance left and then right as he made sure no one else was near. He stretched out his senses and found that he was truly alone.

A gleem of mischief shone in his eyes as he chewed on his lower lip and eyed the small wonder. Again, he glanced to and fro and made sure no one was around.

A small smile tugged at the corner of his upper lip as his eyes twinkled with expectation and delight. Quickly, he wound up the "ducky" and then placed it upon the desk.

The "ducky" wobbled as it walked across the desk. The noise it made seemed

deafening, at first, until it didn't matter any more. Only the silly, wobbly walk of the "ducky" seemed to matter.

Pleasure. GUILTY pleasure radiated from him as he slammed his body into the chair and watched the "ducky" walk across the desk. His hand flew to his mouth as he covered up the grin that appeared there.

His eyebrows nearly reached his hairline and his eyes were huge as he continued to wind up the "ducky" and watch it wobble as it walked across the desk.

This was done over and over. Time flew by.... His concentration never wavered from the "ducky"....

He was no longer a man....no longer a Dominant....no longer an ADULT. He was just a little boy....playing with his wind-up ducky....

And unbeknownst to him....he was the center of attention for two very surprised and dumbfounded scientists.....

Scientists Sloan Parker and Ed Tate watched in awe and absolute amazement as FBI Agent Tom Daniels.1.6 Tom Daniels...Chameleon Tom Daniels...Dominant extra-ordinare Tom Daniels played with a wind-up toy duck.

Ed couldn't keep the grin off his face as watched the normally somber man through the office window and thought, "Well, I'll be......anyone that can play like that....with so much intensity and joy.....can't be all bad.... I guess I'll have to give the guy some credit. Well... just a teeny, tiny, itsy, bitsy, teeny, weeny bit anyway...."

Sloan also couldn't keep the grin off her face as she watched the man she had come to rely on and care about play with such sheer delight. The sight touched her soul and she had to dab away sudden tears as she thought, "What was he like as a child? Did he even get to play as a child? I'll have to leave more of these silly toys around so he can play with them whenever he wants.... away from prying eyes...." . They continued to stand there and watch the man as he continued to play with the tiny object. Sloan cherished every stolen moment of it and then grabbed Ed and yanked him away from the window. She placed her finger to her lips and said, "Shhhh..." as she continued to pull him further into the lab.

Ed understood immediately and motioned to her that they should make some loud noise to announce their presence.

Tom's senses sprang to life as he jolted back in the chair and sat bolt upright as he anxiously scanned the area for any people. He couldn't see anyone but he certainly could feel them as he scrambled to put the "ducky" back in its place upon the desk.

Unfortunately, his quick reflexes overreacted and the "ducky" went flying across the small office and onto the floor just as Sloan and Ed could be heard conversing loudly about some unknown scientific phenomenon. Unable to retrieve the "ducky" without being noticed, Tom opted to lean upon his open hand, elbow on the chair arm as he expelled air in a sign of complete and total boredom.

Sloan and Ed stopped and stared at him as they both grinned at the same time. Ed opened the office door and they both came in to stand before an apparently very bored Tom Daniels.

"What? Did you get bored without us?" Ed asked innocently.

"No, no....I was just....ahhh..." Tom practically stuttered as he looked at Sloan and felt affection and tenderness rolling off her ~ toward him.

Sloan smiled broadly and asked innocently, "You don't get bored at the lab,

do you Tom?"

"No, no...of course not..." he stammered and cleared his throat. "It's just.... I...uh....usually do more....uh...physical type of things....."

Ed's eyebrow rose slowly, "Physical, huh?"

Sloan's grin increased as she added, "Physical, huh?"

Tom scrunched up his brow and squinted at the two of them and tried to read

their emotions. Both were thinking bland thoughts about experiments and monkeys and....stuff Tom just wasn't interested in....So he casually got up

from the chair and walked to the door of the office and announced, "Yes, physical. As in walking, running, moving.....and not just sitting....or doing nothing...."

Sloan and Ed both squeeked, "Oh..." as they tried to stifle the giggles that were trying to bubble out of them.

Tom had to force himself to look at them and not down at the "ducky" which now lay resting on its side on the floor. He needed to get them out of this room soon, so he decided to change the subject and asked, "How about some lunch?

It's your turn to decide, isn't it, Ed?"

Ed looked at the ground as did Sloan. Finally, he responded, "Uh, yah. My turn... uh...why don't you go ahead and decide, Tom?"

"All right but I think we need to go out...." he tried to make eye contact with them but found that he couldn't as he continued to read emotions of affection and humor coming off both of them."How about that Chinese place down the street?"

Ed glanced back at Tom, eyes wide, a small smile playing at the corners of his mouth and responded, "Sure. Sure...sounds good to me..."

Sloan could barely contain herself as she moved through the door, just behind Ed and just ahead of Tom and she quietly said, "Uh, Tom? Would you pick up that wind-up duck for me? I guess I must have knocked it off my desk earlier today....silly me..."

Tom just stopped and stared at her....surprise clearly written on his face as he tilted his head to the right. "Sure. Sure, no problem... " he answered quietly as he turned around and picked up the small object and gently placed it back upon her desk.

Just before he turned back around, however, he couldn't quite stop himself from tapping the "ducky" lightly on the head...making it bounce slightly....as a small, childish smile played upon his lips.

As he caught up with Sloan and Ed he asked shyly, "Would you both mind if we went to the mall instead? I'd like to buy you both some more little toys for your desks and maybe you can explain to me how they keep you from getting bored?...."

Ed turned and placed his hand upon his heart as he bowed toward Tom and asked skeptically, "You're gonna buy us some toys for our desks? You - Tom Daniels - are gonna buy us some toys? I gotta see this...." He said with his eyes wide and a grin upon his face.

Sloan put her arm through Tom's and hugged him close as she said fondly, "Well, Mr. Daniels....I guess we're going to have to let you get bored more often....."

Tom leaned slightly away from her as he stared into her earnest and VERY happy face. Suddenly, he leaned back into her and bumped shoulders with her as he asked innocently, "Who said I was bored?"

Sloan just shook her head, smiled and thought, "Boys and their toys...it must be something universal.... "

The End