Disclaimer: The JAG characters are not mine. I swear.
Author's Note: A "Going Away, Have a Safe Trip" present for jagchick105. This one's for you!
This story is just a bunch of random stuff that goes on at 2 in the morning when e-dog and jagchick105 either One: get bored or Two: get unmotivated to write. "Points" was our motivation, believe it or not. :) She's moving soon, and I wanted to wish her a safe trip cross the country and write her this special fanfic. Remember, points can work wonders.
Falls Church, Virginia
Harm released a huge yawn and stretched.
Man, he was so completely unmotivated to do any work today! In fact, it seemed everyone felt the way he did and had been feeling that way for weeks. Mac had already stepped into his office three times to start up some small talk about random things. It just wasn't like her to be up and talking to him every chance she got. Plus, she was drinking a lot of coffee. She only ate when she was bored.
Harm decided to make his rounds around the bullpen again to see what everyone else was doing...which was probably nothing. He stopped at Harriet's desk and smiled, "Hey, Lt."
"Hello, sir," Harriet sighed. "Back so soon?"
Harm laughed. He had already said "Hey, Lt." to her about five times today. He just nodded and said, "Yeah. I'm just completely unmotivated!"
"I know, I have no idea what's wrong with me sir," Harriet agreed. "This whole office is..."
"Boring," Harm sighed as he looked around. It wasn't that the caseload wasn't heavy enough. It was burdensome, but for some reason...no one wanted to do anything. Not even the Admiral could explain the lack of productivity and it was unlike him to be bored ever. Not to mention he would never let his staff fall behind because of boredom.
"Hello, sir," Bud said as he walked up.
"Hey, Bud," Harm yawned loudly again. He didn't mean to yawn like that, but this was the fourth time he had said "Hey, Bud." today. The three of them congregated around Harriet's desk, soon to be accompanied by Mac, Sturgis and Jenn. They made small talk and laughed. Anything to avoid the boring work at their desks.
"You wanted to see me, sir?" Harm asked as he stepped into the office. The office was dreary and dark...just like the past few weeks had been.
"Have a seat, Harm," AJ said from his desk, he also yawning a little.
Harm sat down and AJ folded his hands. He gave a weak smile, "How's the desertion case coming?"
"Well, sir, it's coming fine," Harm smiled. "The Col. and I seem to be on the same page with this case, sir."
"Were you and Mac too bored to argue, or something?" AJ asked amused.
"You could say that, sir," Harm chuckled, then added quickly. "But honestly, we both agree this time."
"Right," AJ sighed and removed his glasses. "Listen, Harm. This office needs a little...motivation. I received a tip from a good friend of mine."
"A tip?" Harm asked, intrigued. What could possibly motivate them to work?
"It's a book," AJ lifted it up. He slapped the book down and Harm took it. He read the title and laughed, "Sir, this is silly."
"No it isn't," AJ retorted, standing up. "There have been success stories."
Harm laughed again and read the title out loud, "Get My Point! The Motivation Points System That Works Wonders!"
"I know it sounds silly, but I'm willing to give it a try," AJ smiled, taking the book back. "Tomorrow, be prepared for something...different."
"Yes, sir," Harm chuckled and stood up. Harm paused and asked, "Sir, do you mind if I read up on that Points System?"
"Oh, by all means, go ahead," AJ nodded, handing the book back. "You should find it to be interesting."
Falls Church, Virginia
Harm road the elevator up, laughing to himself. He had read that book all night. What parts he could stand to read, anyway. It was utterly hilarious. Earn random points for doing random things? It didn't make sense. Why couldn't AJ just bark a few orders and make them work? Harm stepped off the elevator and sighed. He would let AJ do as he pleased. He was the CO.
Harm entered the bullpen and he was met by the entire crowd standing around a chalk board. They all seemed to be fascinated by something. Harm walked up to inspect the board and smiled. There was a table drawn on the board and at the top of each column had their names: Harm, Mac, Sturgis, Jen, Harriet, Bud, and everyone else at the office. He smiled at AJ, "The Points System?"
"Yep," AJ smiled. "Whoever has the most points at the end of the week, gets a surprise."
"What kind of surprise?" asked Bud.
"Well, that's just it, Bud," AJ laughed. "If I tell you, then you'll know what it is and that'll take all the suspense out of it. But if I don't tell you, you'll want to work for those points and see if you can win the surprise."
Harm chuckled again and said, "Are you serious, sir?"
"Very," AJ nodded and then barked, "Now get to work!"
Then something happened Harm hadn't seen in weeks. Everyone jumped at the order and started to make themselves busy. He watched amazed as officers and enlisted men alike started competing for the copier or racing to the law library.
"C'mon, Harm, why are you standing around?" he heard Mac laugh behind him. Harm cocked an eyebrow in surprise at her.
"Mac, are you going to take this seriously?" Harm looked at her like she was crazy. "All this system does is give you a random number of points for doing random deeds. There's no set guideline to how this works!"
"You're just afraid I'll get more points then you," she teased.
Harm's eyes narrowed and he stiffened and said, "Bring it on, Jarhead."
"You better be ready, Squid," she shot back. They both stuck their tongues out at each other and hurried off to their offices. They both figured, whoever got all their cases done and filed away the fastest would earn the most points. It only made sense.
Falls Church, Virginia
"Now, Mac gets 20 points for finishing off the desertion case and for finally agreeing with Harm about something," AJ smiled and the bullpen chuckled at that. He wrote the number 20 under Mac's name. "Harm gets 22 points for winning the Rooter case and Sturgis gets 33 points for working hard and for not kissing my ass and trying to get on my good side."
"Thank you, sir," Sturgis grinned, proud to be in the lead.
"Now that's ridiculous," Harm pointed at the chalk board after AJ had finished putting the points up. "How could Sturgis get 33 points and I only get 22? He wasn't even in court today!"
"I guess I worked harder then you did, buddy," Sturgis laughed. "Better luck tomorrow."
"Yeah, Harm," Mac poked him. "Don't be a sore loser. Besides, I thought you said this was all silly anyway. Just have a little fun. At least we're getting our work done."
"I guess you're right," Harm sighed, still mad that Sturgis earned more then him. Then he shook his head! This was ludicrous!!! He told himself not to get worked up over this. They were just points that meant nothing!
Then he thought of the "surprise" at the end of the week. A part of him wanted to know what it was and he sure as hell didn't want to lose to Mac! She would rub it in his face for all eternity! Damn it! He had to win!
One week later...
Falls Church, Virginia
Harm and Bud walked by each other, but didn't say a word. There wasn't any time to socialize! They needed to finish their work and earn their points! They had to find out who was going to win the "surprise"!
So far, the score looked like this. Mac had a modest 345. Harm had 366. Both Bud and Harriet managed 328. Jenn just a meager 256. But Sturgis was leading the pack with a whopping 434 points! How he earned them, no one knew...but with the way AJ handed points out...it was anyone's game.
Hell. He gave Mac 55 points for making his coffee "just right". Sturgis got points for coming in on time every day, which naturally pissed Mac off. She was never late thanks to her internal clock. She wanted points for being on time too, but AJ didn't give them to her. Let's just say, no one had been in Mac's way since that incident.
This system was completely disorganized and so utterly silly, but for some reason everyone had to keep going. They had to earn the points and know the prize! And Harm had to admit, it felt good to be rewarded everyday for doing something...even if the points meant nothing. AJ was now congratulating everyone on working hard and he also seemed more...chipper then usual. Like for the first time, he was enjoying his job.
In the past week, when everyone wasn't trying to earn points, things had become a little more friendly. It was strange really. You would think everyone would be at each other's throats all the time, but that wasn't the case. Some officers had even broken "The Rules of the Points System" and offered some of their points to others who weren't doing well.
Miraculously, the bullpen's productivity was back up and the place a much more friendly place to be.
But now, it was crunch time. The work day was almost over and they had to get in the last few points that they could!
Harm and Mac stepped out of their offices, both holding a document that needed to be signed by AJ. It was also the last thing they both had to do before the day was over. It was all a matter of who would get to AJ first to get it signed. After a slight pause, they both booked it across the bullpen. They slid on the floor in their shoes, trying not to run into random chairs or desks.
They pushed and laughed, acting like children as they raced for the door. Mac got there first and opened the door. Harm raced in after her and easily bumped her out of the way. She landed in a chair with a soft plop and Harm slapped his document down on the desk. AJ looked up and frowned, "What happened to knocking first and saying, Permission to enter?"
Harm snapped to attention and Mac hopped up out of the chair and snapped to as well. They both said, "Sorry, sir."
"I guess we got caught up in the game, sir," Harm added to clarify.
"It's fine," AJ said, signing Harm's paper first to Mac's dismay. Then Mac handed hers to him and he signed that.
Harm and Mac walked out together and she hit him, "You cheated."
"I got there first, fair and square," Harm grinned.
Moments later, AJ came out and walked up to the board. He looked at his little paper and with no further ado or explanation of the points, he began to write the scores on the board. Everyone crowded around and when he was finished, only one voice shouted with joy.
"Yes!" Harm jumped up and clapped his hands. "I win!"
The final scores; Mac: 455 Harm: 522 Bud: 433 Harriet: 423 Jenn: 315 and Sturgis: 521. Harm had beat Sturgis by one point!
Harm proceeded to do some gay super bowl touchdown type dance. Everyone laughed until AJ stopped them and help up a package in his hand. "Harm, here is the prize."
"Alright," Harm said as he took it. "Thank you, sir."
Harm opened it and frowned. Everyone looked at him, waiting for him to pull it out. Mac sighed and said, "C'mon, Harm. What is it?"
Harm pulled out the container and announced, "It's Tang?"
"Tang??" the whole bullpen repeated in surprise.
"Well, of course," AJ laughed. "I gave out a prize that no matter who wins, everyone can share. Good work people. I want to see this same kind of motivation next week."
AJ disappeared into his office and Harm shrugged. He held up the container and asked, "Tang anyone?"
A few moments later...
Everyone got a glass of water and stirred in the orange powdery substance.
Harm took a very, very long sip of his glass of Tang. Mac watched and giggled, "Is it good?"
Harm smacked his lips at the tart taste and said in a very sexy voice, "It's awesome."