Disclaimer: I don't own the characters and I don't make any money off of them.
A/N: Thanks as always to ritt, the world's best beta and sounding board! She also knocks out writer's block and leaps tall buildings in a single bound...
Setting: on the freeway in Don's personal vehicle (I changed this a little).
Situation: Don has just been pulled over by CHP and informed he was not only speeding, but his license has expired. This is the conversation with the patrol officer and what Don thinks.
"Great," Don muttered as a CHP car came barreling after him, lights flashing and sirens wailing. "Of all the mornings…" He carefully steered the small hybrid vehicle onto the shoulder of the road and let the window down. He'd just fished out his wallet when the officer appeared next to him, giving him a curt nod. "Officer," Don smiled.
"Do you know why I pulled you over?"
Because I was speeding, Don thought, but he knew not to confess to a crime that has yet to be proven. "I'm not really sure."
"You were doing eighty in a sixty-five," the cop informed him.
Okay, step number two. "I'm sorry. I'm late picking my brother up and I guess I took my eyes of the speedometer for just a minute."
The patrol officer remained unfazed. "That's all it takes."
No sense of humor, this one. Oh well, he can't help but react to step number three – after all, no fellow law enforcement officer would give me a ticket once he realizes I'm one of the good guys. Don flipped open his wallet, fully expecting to see his license and FBI identification card staring back at him – only it wasn't.
"I'll need you to hand me your license."
"Of course," Don fumbled as he removed the requested item, his mind racing as he tried to remember what he'd done with his FBI ID. He was still digging through every nook and cranny of his wallet when the cop spoke up again.
"Mister Eppes, did you know this license is expired?"
"What?" Don demanded as he unthinkingly snatched the piece of plastic away from the officer. "You've got to be kidding me!"
"I don't think traffic laws are a joke, Mister Eppes. Do you?"
Don but back a sigh and shook his head. "Of course not. It's just… I mean, I am in law enforcement – FBI."
"Then you more than anyone else should know the importance of complying with our laws."
Don started to respond but quickly thought better of it.
The other man started scribbling in his ticket book. "I'll have to issue you two tickets. One for speeding and one for having an expired ID." The cop gave him a sideways glance and Don was certain there was a trace of amusement behind the mirrored sunglasses the patrol officer wore. "I suppose you could show me your FBI identification."
Don groaned. "I would love to do that, officer – you have no idea how much. But it seems that I don't have that with me."
An eyebrow appeared over the top of the sunglasses and the cop smirked. "An FBI agent without his ID? Now that would be a first." He resumed writing on his pad, finishing up with an intricate signature, before tearing the tickets out and handing them to Don. "Court date is on the back. You can call in to inquire about the fee."
"Thanks," Don muttered in disgust. Under his breath, he added, "This'll teach me to volunteer to pick Charlie up from the airport. Especially in his own car."
"Sorry, Officer…" Don glanced at the ticket. "… Daniels. Just thinking out loud."
"All right then, Mister Eppes." The cop tipped his hat in salute and grinned. "Drive carefully now and have a nice day."
Don watched in his rearview as Daniels climbed back into his car and disappeared down the road, no doubt to make some other motorist's day. Don cranked the small car to life and eased back onto the freeway, pocketing the ticket as he went. There is no way in hell I'm telling Charlie I got a ticket. He'll never let me live it down.
As he pushed the car up to the speed limit – and not one mile over – he tried to figure out where he could have possibly left his ID card.
Charlie grinned as he saw Don pull alongside the curb at the airport. He threw his luggage in the trunk and slid into the passenger seat. "What took you so long?"
"Traffic," Don growled, never taking his eyes off the road.
"Oh, it's bad today?" Charlie asked innocently.
Charlie nodded and reclined his seat, content to close his eyes and relax while his brother drove. Once they got home and Don had gone inside to grab a beer, Charlie would make sure to put the plastic ID card he had hidden in his pocket back in its rightful place. He'd debated whether he should have taken the ID card in the first place, but had consoled himself with the fact that it wasn't Don's badge or primary identification. And it's not like he'd paid a cop to give Don an undeserved ticket. No, he'd just asked his old buddy Robert Daniels to keep his eye out for the small, hybrid vehicle, conveniently giving him the tag number so there would be no mistake about who he was pulling over. The dinner he would take his friend to later that week would simply be a thank you for all of the hard work he did for the CHP.
A car flew past them, drawing Charlie form his thoughts. "You're going a little slower than usual, Don. Why don't you speed up?"
"Because speeding is highly overrated."
The younger man bit his lip to keep from laughing out loud. "Since when do you feel that way?"
"Since this morning," Don shot back. "Look, I thought you were going to sleep or something. I'll let you know when we're home."
Charlie shrugged and closed his eyes. Don's learned his lesson about speeding, he sing-songed in his head. Maybe now he'll stop buzzing me on that motorcycle he doesn't know I know he has.