Good day, precious readers! You've stumbled into my first official Turks fanfic. You know the drill: I don't own any of the characters. Doesn't mean I can't do nasty things to them.
Well, here goes – wish me luck, amigos!
I. Between Floors
Soothing was the sound of the elevator doors sliding open, to the four tired members of the Turks, who stepped in after a hard days work. Admittedly, some of this little party had worked harder than others, but nevertheless, Reno, Rude, Tseng and Elena were glad to see the last of the 70th floor for the weekend. Friday evenings definitely brought a sense of relief to all employees (with the exception of the guards landed with monotonous graveyard shifts, patrolling the corridors and pressing little buttons on their monitors through the wee hours of the morning. They, on the other hand, were not quite so relieved).
As Tseng hit the ground floor button and the doors closed, his colleagues began to reflect lazily on the day's events.
"Can you believe they've fixed our coffee machine so all it churns out is Decaf?" Reno mused, shoving his hands in his pockets and leaning against the elevator wall. "If it didn't already taste like shit, it certainly will now."
Rude raised an eyebrow from behind his dark sunglasses.
"Decaf's not bad."
"Yes it is, Rude," said Reno blandly. "I can't function on decaffeinated coffee. You know me; I need a bit of a kick to get me started."
Tseng snapped his briefcase shut and sighed sharply, drawing the attention of the three other Turks. He fixed Reno with a frustrated glare.
"Is that all your day amounted to?" he asked.
Reno gave an indignant cry. "No!" he answered, pausing for a moment. "I did, in fact, dedicate a good portion of it to trying to find another coffee machine, on other floors. I searched the 48th, 49th, 50th, 64th – there's actually a good snack dispenser near the gym, I discovered. Heh. You whack it at the right moment and you get your money back, its awesome! – 65th, 6-"
"What about the report?" Tseng queried, clearly getting tetchy. "Or did your utter astonishment at what was going on with the coffee machine prevent you performing even the most menial task?"
Reno smirked. "Ease on, boss – there are a lot of big words in that sentence for this time of night."
Tseng was far from being in the mood to deal with Reno's sarcastic quips, and was just about to retaliate when Elena spoke up.
"Sir?" she said, fumbling in her black shoulder bag. "Sir, I…I managed to write something up. I mean, it's not very good, or anything…here."
She proudly produced a wad of papers, and handed them over with trembling hands.
A few moments of silence passed while Tseng flicked through her report. "Brilliant, Elena," he commented.
"Its not, really," Elena tittered, shyly tucking a lock of hair behind her ear. "I-I didn't cover everything."
"No, no, it's incredibly thorough," insisted Tseng. He beamed at the blonde Turk. "I'm impressed. I'd like to run through it with you in further detail next week. Perhaps over lunch?"
Elena bit her lip and her cheeks flushed a brilliant red.
"Here we go…" muttered Reno with a roll of his eyes.
"It's a sad day," said Tseng, brandishing Elena's flawless report at Reno, "When a rookie can do a better job than someone who's been in the position for years."
Reno scuffed the carpet with the toe of his shoe as he cast around for something to say. He cocked his head at Rude in a spur-of-the-moment attempt to shift the focus of the conversation.
"He hasn't done anything, either."
Rude looked up innocently. "I have."
Reno sneered. "Sure you have. I saw you in your office today, on your laptop, ordering from ."
"Mother's birthday," grunted Rude, looking slightly uncomfortable, "Shut up." he added, as Reno snorted.
Tseng pinched the bridge of his nose and closed his eyes in frustration. "Its Friday, it's late and I have a splitting headache," he said slowly. "I'm really not in the mood to deal with you two and your ridiculous excuses.."
Elena looked on, her young face knit with concern.
"I could always do some overtime, Sir," she blurted out suddenly. "If there's some extra work to be done, I-I would be happy to put in a couple more hours, if you want?"
Tseng sighed heavily. "No, Elena, you've already done more than your share, I couldn't possibly-"
"Oh no Sir, I insist!"
"Just because you want to get into his pants…"
This had come out a little louder than Reno had anticipated.
Rude cleared his throat and turned away, trying to hide the fact that the corners of his mouth had twitched into a smile.
"What?!" Elena yelped, rounding on Reno, her eyes flashing dangerously.
Suddenly, the elevator juddered. Elena temporarily forgot her assault on Reno, as the four members of the Turks looked at each other in slight alarm.
"…can't be good," said Rude.
Another particularly violent jolt sent them all groping for support – Reno toppled into a leafy potted plant in the corner.
The lights flickered once, then twice, and then to their horror went out completely, plunging them into inky darkness penetrated only by the faint glow of the numbers on the control panel.
A grinding screech sounded from somewhere above them, initiating a wave of panic.
"Oh god, oh god! Sir, it hasn't stopped, has it?"
"Someone press the 'open doors' button already!"
"Easier said than done, boss, can't see a bloody thing and I've got a branch sticking up my-"
"Rude, you're closest, you do it."
"…I can't move, someone's got my arm."
"Not me, Rude! I'm still stuck in the plant, yo!"
"Sorry Rude! I thought you were – someone else!"
"Oh yeah, that's right Elena – take advantage of him when it's dark!"
"Can we all stop yelling and just calm down?"
There was a collective "Sorry, Sir," from three different voices, and despite the horrible groaning sound the elevator was making, the Turks did manage to compose themselves for the moment.
"Let's not panic," continued Tseng. "I'm sure that-"
With an ominous and very final sounding 'clunk', the elevator dropped suddenly (causing Elena to shriek again), then stopped.
The atmosphere fell eerily silent, as the lights flickered back on again. The scene was somewhat different to when they had first gone off – Reno was clambering out of the corner, struggling to get out of the now half squashed and pitiful looking potted plant. Rude's dark sunglasses were askew on his nose. Elena, in her panic, had released him and had somehow managed to latch onto Tseng instead, her arms wrapped around his middle. Tseng raised an eyebrow at her and she gave an apologetic smile, stepping away.
"Well that's my excitement for the day," smirked Reno, yet looking a little shaken. He gazed up at the glowing floor number of '49' above the doors, waiting for action of some sort.
Rude moved over to press the ground floor button again.
Still nothing happened.
"Don't tell me," sighed Tseng, wearily. "We're not…are we?"
"Seems so," muttered Rude.
Reno leaned past Rude and hammered the control panel. Looking defeated when again, nothing happened, he flashed a tragic smile at the other Turks.
"Yep," he said. "We're stuck."