Disclaimer: I do not own Patlabor. Now is when I would put in a little joke, but I can't think of any, since I haven't been watching the show for very long!

It was past noon and lunches were left at the office in the break room. They sat on the table collecting dust as time on the clock ticked away. Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock. No one had been around for two hours. SV2 had been called out to deal with an emergency situation at a construction site half and hours' drive from where they were. Apparently, a former worker, having just been fired for drinking and negligence, stole a labor and was threatening to destroy everything there, and then take his own life. As soon as they loaded up into their vehicles, and Noa and Ohta in their labors, they knew the situation would not end well.

Noa was particularly worried. Dealing with emotionally distressed people was always difficult, but she had been having her own issues to work through. She and Shinohara had been getting closer, but then, just as she was about to confess to him, they had a small fight. Now, Noa wasn't sure she could do it.

When they all got to the site, it was a wreck. The building under construction had been partially knocked down, and some police cars were pretty busted up. The containment unit had done all they could, but it was up to the labor division 2. Ohta had gone ahead with his gun, trying to scare the man into submission. The man was afraid, and hid behind a half-built part of the building. Ohta moved in, thinking he had the upper hand, but the man then pushed on some steel beams. Noa moved in and moved Ohta out of the way.

The fight had only been done from a distance, as the distressed man threatened to blow himself and anyone else who got close into bits and pieces. Fighting and shooting wasn't helping, and Ohta was running out of bullets.

"Noa, do you read me?"

"Yes, Asuma. Have the negotiators arrived yet?"

"No. They probably got stuck in traffic."

"I see… we have a plan then?"

"…"

"Asuma?"

"None that we can think of. We're hoping one of you have a plan."

"I say we just stay the course! This damn criminal will give up eventually!"

"Ohta, he isn't a criminal!"

"What do you mean! He's resisting arrest and is being violent, hence a criminal!"

"No! He's just… confused right now…"

Alphone took a step from out behind the building to stand in the line of sight of the man. Said scared man jumped and aimed a grenade launder at Alphonse. (He found it in the site.)

"S-stay back, or I'll shoot!"

"Attention, sir… we don't have to continue this fight!"

"Noa, what the hell do you think you're doing!"

"Nagotiating with the 'criminal'. I don't think the negotiators will get here in time, so we have to do it!"

Asuma opened a private line between the 2 pilots and their captain.

"Noa, are you sure about this?"

"I think she's crazy! This is why women shouldn't be in this job! They're way too soft!"

"Well you shooting your gun off sure isn't helping!"

"This is Goto speaking."

"Captain?"

"What is it, Captain?"

"I have just received word that there has been an accident and the negotiators can't make it. Noa, try to see if you can talk him down."

"What!"

"Calm down, Ohta. Noa has a talent for this sort of thing."

"Hmph. Fine!"

"Okay, go ahead, Noa, but be careful."

"Right."

Alphonse took another step.

"I said don't get near me!"

"Listen to me a minute, okay? You don't want to do this…"

"Yes I do! My life is ruined! If I lose this job, I've got nothing left! My girlfriend left me, and my parents died a month ago!"

"I'm so sorry… no one should have to deal with all of that at once… but listen. You can get out of this! Just put the weapon down and step out of the labor, and we can get you into a counseling group or something!"

After a minute, the labor lowered the launcher, and everyone let go of the breaths they were holding. The man started to power down his machine, but then the ground began to shake.

"Oh, no!"

"Darn! Of all the times to have an earthquake!"

Noa was having trouble keeping her balance, and the fact hat the ground was shaking made the man in the labor nervous. Before he could react, his hand slipped and he squeezed the trigger.

"Noa, look out!"

"Huh?"

She couldn't dodge. The canister hit the front of the labor and bounced off, but before it got too far, it exploded. Alphonse was badly damaged, and Ohta ran up behind it to catch it as it fell. Asuma coughed and waved a clipboard in front of his face, waiting for the smoke to clear, and when it did, he was in for a rude awakening. Alphonse wasn't moving. It was damaged, and Noa wasn't responding, even as Ohta called.

"Noa? Noa, answer me! Noa?"

"NOA?"