Disclaimer: I don't own the characters and I don't make any money off of them.

In the Line of Duty by 3rdgal

Special Agent Don Eppes is a great FBI agent. He's competent and confident, and willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done, even if it means putting himself at risk. How do I know this? Well, we've been working together very closely for quite a while now, and I have enjoyed every minute of it.

I'm not the only one that enjoys working with him. All of the members of his team- Reeves, Granger, and Sinclair- are happy to be working for him, too. They have a tremendous amount of respect for him, evident in the way they listen closely to his thoughts and suggestions, and obey his orders without hesitation. We would all do anything for him, and that includes taking a bullet to save his life.

Which is exactly what I did.

It was a hairy kidnapping case from the start. These same kidnappers had murdered their previous victim as soon as the ransom had been paid. Their current victim was a five year old little girl and nobody wanted a repeat of previous events. The case was so important to Agent Eppes that he had called in his brother, Charlie, to consult, and he eventually led us to the abandoned building where the kidnappers were hiding out.

The standoff between the FBI and kidnappers was intense, lasting well over five hours before it happened- the little girl somehow escaped and came running out of the building toward the swarm of police cars. We all saw the glint of sunlight off metal as the kidnappers took aim at the little girl. I sensed Agent Eppes' breathing and heart rate increase as fear for the little girl took hold in his veins. I knew what he was about to do, and how dangerous it was going to be, but, like I said before, I would do anything for him.

Together we bolted from behind the safety of his SUV, angling to get between the little girl and the kidnappers. Just as we reached her, I heard a gunshot and felt a bullet slam into me.

"Don!" I heard Charlie's panicked cry in the distance as his brother and I fell to the ground.

We lay still, hearing FBI agents run past us, taking control of the scene. When he was certain the situation was under control, and the kidnappers in custody, Agent Eppes stood and handed the little girl to an awaiting EMT. Then he turned his attention to me, holding me in his arms, gently probing the spot where the bullet had struck me.

"Don!" Charlie called out again as he rushed to his brother's side. "Are you okay?"

"I'm fine, Charlie," Agent Eppes assured him as his hand moved to rub the newly formed bruise on his chest.

Charlie turned his gaze to me and his face paled. "Oh my God," he breathed shakily. "That would have been your heart."

"It's okay, Buddy, the kevlar vest did it's job."

He's right, I did. And I would gladly do it again.

The End