A/n: A response to my own DAR challenge. I mean, I had to get Logan something for his birthday! This would slot in somewhere in late S1, I expect.
I'm trying my best to write fluff but there is a minor cliff. I have real trouble ending chapters without them.
Disclaimer: I still don't own it.
Max stepped silently into Logan's office and just watched him for a moment, a smile playing over her face. He was sitting at the computer as usual, completely oblivious to anything but whatever bad guy Eyes Only was trying to take down this week. The words, 'God, he's sexy when he's concentrating,' flitted through her mind; she spoke, to try and pretend she hadn't thought that.
"Knock, knock," she said.
"Hey, Max," he replied, without looking at her.
"Gonna feed a female? Or are you too busy?"
"Sorry. I need to hack the security camera feeds for a warehouse in sector six so my people can torch the place."
"Arson's not usually your thing; what's in there?"
"The largest shipment of cocaine in the north west. I bust the place on TV, half the city will be scrounging round looking to get a fix. Including the cops."
"Gotcha. Mind if I help myself?"
"Knock yourself out." Max took the phrase literally, constructing a huge sandwich for herself before returning to watch Logan.
"So you need me to do anything?" She mumbled around a mouthful of ham salad.
"Got it covered. Your night at Crash can be uninterrupted for once."
"If this thing goes well, you wanna come along and celebrate?"
"No, thanks. Got another job lined up."
"You know what they say about all work and no play…"
Finally, Logan turned to snap at her. "Max, do you mind? I'm trying to concentrate here."
"Ok, ok, geez, Logan, even Normal takes a lunchbreak. Would it really kill you to kick back for a while?"
"Not me. But a hell of a lot of others, if those drugs get out on the streets. Just eat quietly and go, all right?"
"Fine." Max proceeded to bolt down what was left of her sandwich and dumped her plate in the kitchen before she left. Logan was so absorbed in his work he didn't even notice the sound as she slammed the door behind her.
Max stepped out of the elevator and went to unlock her bicycle from the railing she'd chained it to, muttering angrily under her breath.
"Damn workaholic… what's wrong with the guy… if it wasn't so cute I'd kick his ass…"
"Hey, Max," said a familiar voice. She looked up to see Bling walking towards her, grinning. She flushed, hoping he hadn't heard her last comment.
"Hey, Bling. You won't be smiling long; his crankyness is not in the mood for interruptions."
"For a change," he said, rolling his eyes. "Course, it's to be expected."
"What d'ya mean? Is there anything wrong?" Her annoyance temporarily forgotten, Max stared at the trainer with concern, bordering on fear.
"What, you mean you've forgotten? Or did he never tell you in the first place?"
"Tell me what?" She was getting really worried now.
"What's today, Max?"
"I meant the date."
"November tenth… Oh my God. I totally spaced! Tomorrow's Logan's birthday!"
"Uh huh. Hey, don't beat yourself up; I only know because I've read his medical records."
"Why is his birthday making him so pissed off? You'd think he'd be happy…"
"I don't think he sees getting older as a good thing."
"How old's he going to be? It's not like a big milestone or something is it?" she asked desperately.
"Thirty two. But that's not his problem. One, he doesn't have any living family, so it reminds him of the people who aren't going to be around. Two, he avoids giving out personal information about himself so none of his friends or contacts know."
"Makes sense, I guess. Never really thought about it."
"And three… it's the first, since the shooting. Reminds him he's going to be in the chair for the rest of his life."
"Oh. Guess that means a party's out, then."
"I'd say so. Don't worry, he'll get over it in a couple of days. And if he doesn't, I'll kick his ass myself; I don't happen to find it as cute as you."
Max blushed crimson. "If you even think about breathing a word…" she began.
"Hey, I'm not suicidal," Bling said. "Your secret's safe with me."
"It'd better be," she told him, still red as she mounted her bike and rode off back to work. "Later!" She called over her shoulder. Bling watched her go, shaking his head in amusement before heading up to deal with his intractable patient.
"Hey! The reason they call it a lunch hour is it lasts an hour! No longer!" Yelled Normal as Max halted her bike in front of his desk.
"Get off my back, Normal, I have more important things to think about," she snarled, her eyes searching the building.
"Cindy!" She said, as her best friend rolled in to pick up a package. "I need your help."
"Not on company time, you don't," said Normal.
"What kind of help?" Asked Cindy, looking worried.
"Come here, I'll tell you…"
"Oh, fine, just ignore me. I'm docking your pay for this, Missy!" Both women ignored him and headed for the lockers.
"This something to do with those black helicopter dudes of yours, boo?" Asked Cindy quietly.
"No; even worse. I'm totally in over my head, Cindy; I am so screwed…"
"Max! Calm down and tell me what's up!"
"Tomorrow's Logan's birthday," she said in a rush. Max's best friend cracked up laughing.
"Hey! This is serious!"
"No doubt, boo, no doubt," said Cindy, trying to get herself under control. "But the idea that you forgetting your boy's birthday is worse than people trying to kill you is…" she dissolved into a fit of giggles.
"Hey, if Lydecker shows up I can handle it; I was made that way. But Manticore did not have a class in giftwrapping; what am I gonna do?"
"Ok, girl, let's think this bitch through. Now Logan is not a party kinda guy, so that's out, right?"
"Great. One thing you don't have to organise. Next thing on the list; present. Any ideas?"
"You're kidding, right? There is nothing he could want that I could a) afford and b) find in time for tomorrow unless I stole it, which would really piss him off."
"Don't have to be something you bought, Max. It's all about the thought. You could make something, or take him somewhere… and of course there's always the old failsafe."
"You pick out your favourite couloured bow and tie it round your neck. Now that's a present he'll be itchin to unwrap…"
"OC!" Max wailed. "You're not helping!"
Blame Aerie for the bow comment; it was her idea.
So, what did you think? Rest up tomorrow…