Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters or places mentioned in CSI. I do own Hailey, from the tip of her pink hair down to the toes of her Chuck Taylors.
Spoilers: Takes place during season 5, right after DtD. Greg's in the lab sometimes, the team is still together. Anything is fair game.
A/N: This one is for my sister. She is Hailey, living under an assumed name. The hair and taste in music remains the same. Also, a huge thanks to Sprogy, who agreed to take on betaing duties for another WIP.
Pure humorous fluff for the first couple of chapters, but spiraling down into the land of angst in chapter five. Lots of drama to come. Hints of GSR and CWR. Since no one can seem to decide how old Lindsey is, I have decided to make her about thirteen and a freshman. Also, I realize that on the show the police station and the CSI lab are actually separate buildings, but for plot purposes I have smooshed them together with a maze of hallways connecting the two.
Chapter 1 A younger, punker Brass
"So what do you think?" Nick questioned the man walking beside him down the hallway. "Do we have enough for a warrant?"
"I hope so," Warrick replied. "I'm itching to get a look inside this guy's apartment."
They were working a murder case, and all they had so far were a few stray hairs and their suspicions about a next door neighbor who couldn't come up with an alibi. They needed more, which is why they were now standing outside Jim Brass's office, hoping for his help in getting a warrant to search the man's apartment.
"Damn, doesn't look like he's here." Warrick scanned the apparently empty office.
"Light are on, so maybe he just stepped out. I'm going to use the phone to page him." Nick was just reaching for the phone when the black chair behind Brass's desk suddenly swiveled around.
"Don't touch that."
Nick was startled enough by the voice that he lowered his hand and took a step back.
"Just kidding." The occupant of the chair smiled. Nick and Warrick couldn't help but smile back. Instead of the middle aged, weather homicide captain they had come to see, the two CSI's were now facing a confident teenage girl, sitting in the chair like she belonged there. With trained eyes they took in the sight before them, each noticing the short crop of bright pink hair, the multitude to piercings in her ears (those weren't really screws in the bottom holes, were they?) the black t-shirt the proudly declared 'Flogging Molly' and the glittering eye shadow. She looked to be about fifteen or so.
"Can we help you with something?"
"Are you lost?" Both men found their voices at the same time.
The girl laughed as she shook her head, taking delight in the expressions on their faces. "No, I'm cool. Just hanging out while I wait for my uncle. I was talking to Doc Robbins, but then David brought in a body and for some reason the doc wouldn't let me stay."
If possible, the men looked even more confused.
"Your uncle?" Warrick asked.
"Yeah. Uncle Jimmy. I'm staying with him for a while. He just picked me up from the airport, but then he got a call and we had to come straight here."
"Uncle Jimmy?" Nick was the one to ask this time. He was pretty sure he knew who she meant, but was having a hard time believing his own thoughts.
"Jim Brass." Her eyes glittered with amusement as she stood up and held out her hand. "I'm Hailey Brass. Are you guys cops or CSIs?"
"CSIs." Warrick accepted the proffered hand, surprised to find Hailey's grip to be firm. "I'm Warrick. Warrick Brown."
"Uncle Jimmy is right. You do have a Lenny Kravitz thing going on." Turning to the other CSI, Hailey took in the short brown hair and all-American looks. "That must make you Nick Stokes, Crime Stopper."
Nick also shook her hand, shaking his head at the same time. "I am never living that down, am I?"
"Would you rather be known as 'the guy who thought helicopters dropped scuba divers into trees?'" Hailey quipped.
"I'm going to like you, girl." Warrick commented.
"Sorry about that, kiddo. Hope you weren't bored." Jim Brass walked to his office, not noticing until he stepped inside that more then just his niece were present.
"No sweat, Uncle J. I always find a way to entertain myself."
Brass took in the amused look on Warrick's face and the slightly embarrassed expression on Nick's. "That I don't doubt, kid."
"I know you probably need to get home, Brass," Warrick began, "But Nick and I were hoping..."
Jim sighed. It seemed he was stuck at work for at least a while longer.
"Chair's all your, Uncle Jimmy. I'm gonna wander the halls and see how much trouble I can get into before it's time to go." Hailey stepped out from behind the desk, nodding to her uncle and winking at the two visitors as she passed them on her way out the room.
"Something tells me it's going to be an interesting year," Brass remarked before turning the conversation to talk of judges, evidence and warrants.
Hailey soon grew bored with the sterile white walls of the police station. With a few twists and turns down the many long corridors, she soon found herself in the glass lined walls that marked the CSI's domain. She was surprised to hear the faint sounds of Ima Robot, and followed the music down the hallway. It grew in volume as she walked towards the labs, reaching a crescendo outside of a room marked 'DNA.' She just watched for a minute, entertained by the sight of the spiky haired lab tech dancing around the room as he carefully balanced a tray of test tubes in one hand. At one point he tripped over something on the floor, but caught himself and the tray without spilling a single drop. Hailey couldn't help herself. She applauded.
"What the..." Greg turned, momentarily alarmed by the sound. Grissom was supposedly off tonight, but you never knew when he might pop in.
"Good taste in music too."
Greg set the DNA samples down on the table before reaching for the CD player, turning down the volume. "Can I help you?" he queried.
"Why does everyone keep asking me that? Do I look lost or something?"
Greg seemed momentarily taken aback, until he noticed the twinkling of her eyes. "You're just a bit younger and a little...cooler... then most the people who usually come in here."
"I'll take that as a complement. I'm Hailey."
"Greg Sanders, DNA genius," he introduced himself. "So you're not lost. Perhaps you're in search of the best cup of coffee you've ever experienced? I just put on a pot of my special brew, Blue Hawaiian. You haven't lived until you've tasted this stuff."
"Five minutes, and you've already discovered the way to my heart," Hailey joked as she accepted a mug of the fragrant beverage. She took a sip, closing her eyes in appreciation. "Perfect."
"So, Hailey, got a last name?"
Hailey took another sip before answering. "Brass," she stated.
Greg, who had also taken a sip of his own coffee, almost choked at her announcement. "Brass?" he sputtered, the expression on his face half confusion mixed with shock. "Any relation to..."
"Captain Brass? Yeah, that would be my uncle."
Greg did a double take of the teenager standing in his lab, looking for any sign that she was related to the homicide captain that he was secretly a little scared of. Not as scared as he was of Grissom, but still. Any common feature that might exist was obscured by the makeup, hair dye, and vastly different expressions.
"You, and Brass are...I mean...wow." Greg took a sip of coffee to steady himself. An image of the cop and the teenager standing next to each other flashed in his head, and he suddenly relaxed.
"That is just, like, cool. Very cool. I'm glad to meet you, Hailey."
"It's mutual, Greg." Hailey tipped her mug against Greg's in a mock toast.
"So, what are you doing in the neon lit city of ours? Visiting your uncle for a vacation?"
"Visiting, yes. Vacation, no. I'm moving in with my uncle for a year while my mom is teaching in Spain," Hailey explained.
"A year, with Brass." Greg couldn't keep in the slight shudder at the thought.
"He intimidates you too." Hailey noted. "Back in Jersey, he had all the rookie cops running scared. Next time I come in, I'll bring the picture I have of my fifth Christmas. Hard to be nervous around a man after you've seen him dressed as Santa Claus."
"S-S-Santa?" This time, the coffee in Greg's mouth went flying into the room, dispersed as a fine mist that might have resembled blood splatter if the color had been different. "Captain Brass, dressed as Santa Claus? This I've got to see."
They were both laughing at the thought when a new voice interrupted them.
"I'm guessing it's not my DNA results that you find so amusing." Sara walked into the lab, taking in the chuckling lab tech and the girl seated beside him. "Paying teenagers to do your work, Greggo? Isn't that a little high schoolish," she joked dryly.
"Sara. No, your results will be ready in a minute." Greg set down the mug of coffee, tucking away the image of Brass in a Santa suit to enjoy at a future time.
"Hailey, this is Sara Sidle, the smartest CSI you'll ever meet. Best solve rate in the lab. Sara, this is Hailey, Brass's niece. She just moved to Vegas."
"Nice to meet you, Hailey. And its second best solve rate. Grissom's first," she corrected.
Hailey had to smile when Sara mentioned the night shift supervisor. She had heard stories about the two of them from her uncle. "Nice meeting you too. Sounds like you guys actually have work to do, so I'm going to go see if Uncle Jimmy is ready to take me home yet." Retracing her path, Hailey left the lab and followed the maze of hallways back to the police station.
"There you are. I was just coming to look for you." Brass was waiting in the corridor just outside his office. "Let's get out of here before someone else finds me."
"Sure thing, Uncle J."
"So, where did you disappear to?" Brass asked as they climbed into his truck and fastened their seat belts.
"Just wandered. Met Sara and Greg. Greg is awesome, plus he really knows how to make coffee."
"You are your mother's daughter," Brass remarked. "Not a shy bone in your body, is there?"
"Right, and your so shy and reserved yourself, Uncle J. Must be a family trait."
"Must be, kiddo, must be."