Champagne and Stilettos

It was Detective Marty Deeks' second month serving as the LAPD liaison to the NCIS Office of Special Projects. It was also his second month being partnered with Kensi Blye, the lone female agent on the team led by the no-nonsense G. Callen.

The tall, athletic woman was something of an enigma, and therefore a challenge, to Deeks. She was in prime physical condition and could clearly play with the big boys. Deeks took every opportunity to analyze her when she wasn't looking. Not an ounce of fat on her and just the right amount of curves in the right places. Dark mismatched eyes that nothing escaped and long, glossy dark hair that Deeks' fingers itched to run through. Then there was that sassy mouth. Several times each day he wondered what it would be like to kiss those luscious lips and shock the hell out of Kensi.

Okay, so I'm ogling her. What's the big deal? Is my tongue hanging out? Probably. But she's a smokin' hot babe and she's right here under my nose. It's not like I can ignore her.

But what was her agenda? Was she one of those women who had to steamroll over every male she encountered? Was she a man-hater?

That thought gave Deeks pause for a moment and he had a sudden flashback of some TV nature program where the female insect literally bit the head off the male after mating.

The team was downstairs on the shooting range and Kensi was drilling the absolute hell out of the poor paper target. The fourth member of the team, ex-Navy SEAL Sam Hanna, pulled his earmuffs down and chuckled. "Bad second date, Kensi?"

"Sam, how many times do I have to remind you, she's not a second date type of girl," said Callen. A smile hovered on his lips.

Kensi took a deep breath, no doubt preparing to blast the two senior members of the team. However, before she could respond, Eric Beale, tech wunderkind, stuck his head in the door. "Callen, Sam, Hetty would like a word."

Sam threw up his hands. "Hey, I promise you I turned in all my receipts."

Callen, too, was on the defensive. "And I did not get any blood on that Egyptian cotton shirt I wore to Arkady's club." He rubbed his chin thoughtfully. "However, there might have been some spatter on the pants."

Sam looked at Callen. "Come on, G. We might as well get this over with. You know Hetty has to have the last word."

"As well she should since she's our boss," added Kensi with a little smirk.

Callen and Sam departed wondering aloud what Hetty wanted.

Kensi pushed the button to pull her target back in. "Think I'll go clean my weapon now," she said. The target rolled up and stopped in front of her.

"Hold up, Kensi. What did this target ever do to you?"

She turned to him with a frown and narrowed eyes. "What?"

"Well, there's shooting and then there's . . ."

"There's what, Deeks? Out with it."

". . .there's annihilation. Is this what you do to bad second dates?"

Kensi regarded the target again, but ignored the dig about her dating life. All her shots had obliterated the heart. "You call it annihilation and I call it perp down and good guys still standing. Let's see yours."

Deeks pushed the button for his target. It clattered to a stop and Kensi studied it. "You're all over the place and what's with these in the shoulders?"

Deeks ran a hand through his hair and Kensi tracked the movement without realizing it. "Yeah, not my best outing. Too much caffeine this morning. But I'll have you know those shoulder shots blew out this guy's rotator cuff. That'll be a bitch to recover from."

"You think?" asked Kensi.

"Yeah, one of my few friends on the force tore his in the gym and it was months before he was back to a hundred per cent."

"He could just switch to his other hand and you'd still be dead." Kensi sounded almost triumphant with her analysis.

"Okay, I'm glad the good guys, a.k.a. us, are still upright. But what about the bad second dates? Do you have a lot of those?" he asked with raised eyebrows. "Don't try to dodge the question." He was more than eager to find out what Sam and Callen were referring to earlier.

"None of your business, surfer dude."

Never one to let a juicy subject drop, Deeks plowed ahead. "But we're partners and partners share."

"Yeah, stuff like ammo and intel. Not necessarily personal stuff."

"I didn't mean I wanted to share your toothbrush." Although I wouldn't mind sharing your bed. Deeks had been plagued with what some people might deem inappropriate thoughts about his new work partner since day one. On the other hand, he thought they were quite appropriate and Kensi had starred in several dreams already.

Kensi's face scrunched up in disgust. "Eeew!"

"All I'm saying is that I'm open to anything you might want to reveal. All in confidence, of course."

Kensi shrugged. "There's nothing to reveal."

"Not yet anyway," said Deeks.

"Did anyone ever tell you you're very nosy?"

"A ha! You call it nosy and I call it persistent. Persistence is what makes me a good cop."

"If you're such a good cop, why aren't you still at LAPD?" She jabbed a finger in his chest. "Yes! Score one for Kensi!"

Deeks couldn't help but grin. Kensi wanted to ignore his hypnotic blue eyes and goofy charm, but everyday she felt her iron resolve slipping a little more. What is wrong with me? I used to be stronger than this.

"So that's how it's going to be. I was brought in to be a conduit of information and cooperation between LAPD and NCIS." He paused dramatically for several seconds. "And to be your partner. Apparently, they can't let you off the reservation without a partner."

"Conduit? That's an interesting term for whatever it is you do here," said Kensi.

Deeks laughed and did not seem to take offense. "Princess, you haven't even begun to see what I can do here."

"What did you say?" Kensi was taken aback for a second by the royal title and said nothing. She snatched the paper target down and stuffed it in the trash, then stashed her weapon at the small of her back. "I'm off to the armory," she announced with a flip of her ponytail.

Deeks knew he'd one-upped her. "Score one for Deeks!"

"I heard that," called Kensi over her shoulder.

"I meant for you to. Hey, wait up."

As they rounded the corner, they found Hetty standing there. "Ah, Mr. Deeks. I have some more paperwork about your new position that needs signing."

"More? I thought I signed away my first-born and gave a kidney last week."

"Yes, I know. Uncle Sam seems to thrive on duplicate and triplicate forms even in the age of the internet," observed Hetty drily. "Come along. Time's a wasting."

He glanced at Kensi. "Okey, dokey. Catch you later, partner."

Kensi gave a little nod. "Hope your hand doesn't get a cramp."