Thanks to everyone who reviewed!
To alliekiwi– no, they were just a random 12! Thought I would answer your question, since you asked!
Disclaimer: Nope. Don't own 'em. Never will.
Author's Note: Sorry for the wait. It was finished, but I was "temporarily" banned from the computer.
"Settling a Dispute" Part Two
0432 Local Time
Falls Church, Virginia
The four of them stood in front of the Admiral's desk, while AJ paced back and forth, fuming. He looked at them and sighed heavily again. Both Harm and Webb were wearing military fatigues, holding paintball guns and looking rather fearful of what was about to happen. Mac and Sturgis seemed to try to distance themselves from the other two, careful not to look into their CO's eyes. AJ glared at all them and then looked down at his ruined uniform.
"Uh, sir..., if I could explain...," Harm tried to amend, but AJ shot him an irritated look and he shut up immediately.
"Look at my uniform," AJ pointed at himself, then repeated loudly. "Look at my uniform!! I look like the freakin' mascot for...for that damn cereal with the rainbow!"
"Lucky Charms, sir," Harm filled in quietly, trying not to laugh. AJ was covered in paint and to be honest, it looked rather funny and he was having a hard time keeping it together.
"What Comdr.?" AJ said with a strained voice.
"The cereal with the rainbow...it's Lucky...," Harm elaborated.
"I know what it is, Harm!" AJ slammed his fist into the desk. Mac let out a small sigh. Even now, Harm hadn't learned when to shut-up! Sturgis glanced down to the floor, he too, trying to suppress his amusement.
AJ paced some more and tried his best to calm down, "Now, who's idea was this?"
"Harm." Both Clay, Sturgis and Mac said simultaneously and immediately. Clay even had the nerve to point at him.
"Well, geez, guys! Thanks for selling me out so quickly," Harm looked at them incredulously.
AJ walked over to Harm, got in his face and hissed, "You better have a damn good reason for firing those damn paintballs in my damn parking lot Comdr., or I'll have your head delivered to the SECNAV on a silver platter, do you understand what I'm saying?"
"Yes, I do, sir," Harm said, doing his best not to make eye contact with his CO. Never in his wildest dreams did he think this scenario up! He was just trying to win Mac back!
"Well?" AJ pushed.
"I did it for the Col., sir," Harm said, deciding that telling the truth was the best option.
"Harm!" hissed Mac. "Don't bring me into this!"
"Well, you are the reason I did it, Mac! And that's why Webb did it too, sir," Harm added, also deciding Clay shouldn't be let off the hook either. "We were fighting over the Col."
For this comment, Harm received a glare from Clay who then turned to AJ. "If I may Admiral..."
"Shut-up, Webb," AJ warned, then turned back to Harm. "And you two thought firing paintballs at each other would be the best way to woo the Col.? Is that it?"
Sturgis released a stifled chuckle at that question and Harm shot a glare at him.
"Well, I wasn't trying to woo her in that sense, sir," Harm chuckled a little, trying to explain. "I mean, I was trying to get her attention and I was challenging Webb to fight for her, I guess..."
"You guess?" AJ repeated angrily. "Well, your guess ruined my uniform!"
"Might I add, sir, that I'm just an observer," Sturgis pleaded, then pointed at the two of them. "I had nothing to do with this..."
"And I tried to stop them, sir," Mac added eagerly, not wanting to feel the wrath of AJ either.
AJ glared at Sturgis and Mac, but he determined that they indeed had just been watching the events unfold from the sidelines. His gaze on them softened and he dismissed Sturgis and Mac to the dismay of Harm and Clay. AJ glared at Harm and Clay and said, "What you two did out there was juvenile, unprofessional and down right stupid."
"We know, sir," They both agreed, happy to hear that his tone had calmed down a little bit.
"And while I should punish you in an appropriate manner, I want to do something else that will make me feel so much better," AJ said in a way that made Harm grimace.
"And that would be?" Clay asked.
"This," and then AJ punched Clayton hard in the nose sending him sprawling to the floor. Harm stepped back in surprise, "Ouch."
"I've been wanting an excuse to punch him for months now," AJ explained. "Thanks for being stupid."
"Well, your welcome, sir," Harm said uneasily.
AJ than surprised Harm and punched him in the face with almost the same intensity as when he punched Clay. Harm landed on the floor right next to Clay. Both men moaned and tried to sit up, clearly in pain.
"Sir, what was that for?" Harm moaned. "I thought you were thanking me for being stupid..."
AJ tugged on his sleeves, feeling slightly better and looked down at Harm with a smile playing on his lips, "That was for destroying my uniform."
Falls Church, Virginia
Mac was tapping her pencil on her desk when Harm came in, a stack of files in his arms that completely blocked his face. He set them down on her desk and smiled sheepishly, "Hey, Mac."
"Hey, Harm," she stared curiously at the stack, then looked up at him and smirked. "How's your eye?"
"Oh, this?" he pointed at his slightly swollen left eye; the injury sustained from AJ's fury. "It doesn't hurt as much as my back. Do you know how much paperwork I've been lugging around?"
"How much?" she smiled.
"Think the Imes debacle...only ten times worse," he grinned.
He watched as Mac tried to hide her amusement, but couldn't. She started to laugh and he looked at her curiously, "What's so funny? You find the Admiral punishing me amusing?"
"No, not that," she smiled. "I just...wow, Harm. Paintball? Where the hell did that come from?"
He laughed and said, "I don't know, Mac. At the time, it seemed like a good idea..."
"Was it?" she asked curiously.
"I don't know yet," he replied wistfully. "You tell me."
Their eyes locked and Mac found herself at a lose for words. She went to open her mouth, but before she could say anything, Harm snapped his fingers and stood up, "Hold that thought...I forgot I have a present for you."
"Hopefully not this stack of papers," she joked.
"Nope, something better," he said, skipping back out into the bullpen and popping back in with a dozen roses. "These are for you."
"Oh!" Mac gasped in surprise and stood up to take them. "Thanks, Harm...but, what are these for?"
"I decided to just go with the roses this time," he smiled at her, then added quickly, "There's one more thing you might want to know..."
"What's that?" she asked.
"Rabb!" yelled the voice of a very angry CIA agent.
"Webb's here," Harm grimaced.
"What did you do?" Mac said to Harm as Clay stormed through her office door, covered in paint. He was holding the Admiral's freshly cleaned uniform and that too, was covered in paint...again. Harm turned around and smiled, "Hey Clay, I thought you were supposed to get that cleaned?"
"It was clean until you ambushed me!" Clay yelled, startling people in the bullpen.
"Harm..." Mac gave him a stern look.
"Hey, it's not like we called a truce or anything," Harm shrugged. "So I was still obligated to fight if I wanted to. Not that, that matters. I didn't fire anything at you."
"You're lying and you know it," Clay began then heard the booming voice of AJ.
"Webb? Is that my uniform still covered in paint?" AJ bellowed from across the bullpen.
Harm grinned wickedly and waved goodbye. Clay glared at Harm and turned to AJ to explain what had happened. Sturgis popped into Mac's office quickly and handed Harm his paintball pistol back, "You owe me big time! You're lucky he didn't see me!"
"Thanks, Sturgis!" Harm smiled wide and took the gun. Sturgis quickly hopped back out and Harm turned to Mac and smiled, "I win."
She looked at him and sighed heavily, "No, you cheated."
"So? Clay doesn't know that," he shrugged. He then sat on her desk and asked, "So, where are we going to dinner?"
"Wait. Dinner?" she looked at him.
"Yeah, I "won". You were the prize. Now I want to take you to dinner," Harm explained.
"Now, hold on, I never said you won me," she pointed at him. "You said you won me and frankly, I'm not some trophy to be won."
"C'mon, Mac. Do you want to go to dinner or not?" Harm pushed.
Before she could answer, there was a loud smack, a hush over the bullpen and the loud thud of Clayton Webb hitting the floor.
"Now get my damn uniform cleaned!" AJ yelled at him. "I'm sick of your damn excuses!"
"Ouch." Mac grimaced and Harm chuckled to himself.
AJ looked in Mac's office and glared at Harm, "Did I not give you enough work to do, Comdr?"
Harm quickly hopped up and grabbed the files, but before leaving he turned to Mac, "Dinner?"
"Uh...," Mac paused to see Clay just now getting up off the floor. He looked pathetic and dinner with Harm suddenly started to look much more appealing. She turned to Harm and said, "Pick me up 7?"
"Deal," he smiled.
"Coming, sir," Harm replied, hurrying out of Mac's office.
Mac laughed to herself and sat down. She picked up a one of the roses, breathed in the scent and smiled...