Mac sighed in relief as the final scene of Die Hard came to an end, the movie fading to black before the credits began rolling. "Don't you dare start it over." He growled, his position stretched out on the couch, injured ankle wrapped in an bandage and propped up on Jack's lap, gave him a clear view of his partner's uninjured arm reaching towards the remote control balanced on the armrest. "I mean it, Jack."
"Aww, come on Mac." Jack complained, the movie back to the main screen now, Jack's finger hovering over the play button. "We only watched it once."
"Exactly. We already watched it once. And knowing you, you've watched it at least three times just last week." Mac said, holding his hand out for the remote.
"No, I just had it on for background noise while I did some stuff around the house." Jack defended, tossing the remote to his partner anyway.
"Exactly. Your house. Not mine. You're lucky I let you have a choice at all. Now it's my turn to pick what we watch." He declared, turning the dvd player off and scrolling through the tv guide searching for the science channel. "Besides, I'm hurt. That means you have to be nice to me."
"You say that like you're the only one who got banged up on that last job." Jack said. "You see this sling, pal? I'm not just wearin' it to make a fashion statement!" Jack knew he was fighting a losing battle and finally conceded. "Fine. Watch whatever you want. But I refuse to sit through another documentary about making ball bearings. Or bridge building. Why can't you like cool smart-people shows? Like,"
"Fighting robots?" Mac interrupted Jack's rant, stopping on the show and shooting a glance at his partner, finding him warily intrigued.
"Depends." Jack said cautiously. "You know how I feel about robots man. Are they making the decisions about the fights? Like, doin' it on their own?"
"Nope. It's like those remote controlled cars you could get as a kid. Just with saws and flames and stuff to tear each other apart, no AI." Mac replied with a smile, knowing that he had found a winner.
"Awesome." Jack declared with a grin, setting back and watching the show. The first commercial break he found his mind wandering to his partner though. It wasn't like Mac to play up being injured, even if it did mean getting him out of watching Die Hard again. "So…" He drawled. "How's the foot feelin'?"
"It's my ankle, not foot." Mac automatically corrected. "And it's fine."
"Whatever. Not hurtin'?" Jack continued.
"It's fine, Jack." Mac insisted. "Seriously. I don't even notice it unless I try to walk on it without my crutches. Which," He added quickly upon seeing his partner's glare. "I would never try."
"Yeah right." Jack said with a sigh. "You're supposed to stay completely off it for a week, kid."
"Jack. It's just a sprain. Nothing I haven't dealt with before. I know how far is too far to push it. I'm fine." Mac insisted for what felt like the millionth time since hopping out of the Phoenix's infirmary on his crutches, Jack, left arm in a sling, hovering beside him.
"No, it's a bad sprain." Jack corrected. "And Doc said that a sprain like that can hurt worse than a broken bone."
"Well it doesn't. But since you brought up the subject of broken bones, how's the arm?" Mac changed the subject, pointing to Jack's arm.
"Hey, now, it's not broken. Just a fracture." Jack reminded him. "Hardly nothin'."
"Fracture is a type of break." Mac countered back. "And if you're allowed to bug me about a little sprained ankle, I get to check on your broken arm.
"Naw," Jack pressed on, purposely ignoring his partner's questions. "Fractures aren't nowhere close to broken. Look at it like this, you're drivin' down the road, right? And a tiny little rock flies up and hits your windshield. Takes a chip out of the glass. That ain't broke. You keep drivin like nothing happened."
"Yeah till you hit a pothole and that little chip splinters all the way across your windshield." Mac interrupted. "Or there's a sudden temperature change and the atmospheric pressure shifts too fast and causes the crack to expand…"
"Hush up. Let me finish my analogy." Jack continued. "A break is like when some punk kid decides to go down the street bashing in car windshields with a baseball bat. That's a break. That's somethin' you have to worry about. So when you hear a doctor say the word 'broken' you can worry. As long as it's just a crack, fracture, whatever you wanna call it, I'm fine."
"You done?" Mac asked with a smirk.
"I feel I made my point." Jack replied smugly.
"Okay, well, one, that wasn't an analogy. It was a metaphor." He continued on, ignoring Jack's eye roll. "Two, you completely ignored my question, which I'm assuming means that your deflection was just a ploy to keep from admitting that your, forgive me for using the forbidden word here, broken, arm really does hurt?"
"Honestly, man, I'm fine." Jack insisted. "I've lived through way worse."
"Exactly. So have I." Mac answered. "Truce?" He asked, holding out his hand in a closed fist, waiting for the familiar tap of his partner's nuckles against his own.
"Truce." Jack agreed, reaching over with his uninjured arm, careful not to disrupt Mac's ankle in the process. "But only if you agree to tell me if it does start botherin' ya."
"Sure." Mac agreed easily. "Same thing goes for you though."
"Hey, hey, shh." Jack said suddenly, looking away from Mac and purposely not answering his partner. "Show's back on."
Mac smiled and turned his attention back to the television, their discussion on hold for the time being. It could wait. They had four more days before returning to work and if Mac knew his partner at all, Jack wasn't planning on leaving any time soon.