A MacGyver FanFic for Rockatteer and the MOL mob.
Author's Note: this story begins just before the opening Gambit of the Pilot episode. Pete Thornton and MacGyver both work for the DXS as field agents—Pete has not yet gotten his promotion to Deputy Director. I'm making up some names and throwing in some familiar faces when I can.
Feel free to throw me hints and (gently) point out my outstanding errors, and hopefully we can weave this story around the episode in a satisfactory way.
Chapter One: Separate Assignments
Pete Thornton held the phone lightly to his ear, hoping to hear the dial tone suddenly interrupted by a familiar voice. The line clicked and that voice began to speak, but Pete cursed softly; the tones of confidence and humor were there, but it had the flat and tinny sound of a recording. Pete knew for certain that his hopes had been in vain—he had reached the answering machine.
Pete hated answering machines, and he hated one certain answering machine in particular at this moment. None of the things he had to say could be recorded on such a device; such was the nature of his work. He rapidly composed an abbreviated message in his head, but when the beep sounded he hung up the receiver instead of speaking.
With a thwarted wrinkle on his brow, he picked up the phone again and dialed swiftly. It was answered in half a ring. "Thornton for Col. Barnard." He waited a few moments more before a deep voice rumbled over the line.
"No luck, sir… No, he wasn't home… possibly on another assignment…no, his machine didn't say when he'd be back… it's no problem, sir; I'm leaving now."
Pete hung up the phone again and sighed. "Looks like I'm on my own on this one," he muttered softly. He slid open a drawer and filled his pockets with some personal items, then hooked his jacket off its peg on the wall. Shrugging into it as he walked to the elevator, he couldn't shake the feeling that he shouldn't leave without sending his friend some kind of message.
Pete snapped his fingers as an idea occurred to him. He turned on his heel and marched back around his desk, where he rummaged through a deep filing cabinet. Extracting an object, he hurried down the hall and into the antechamber outside of the Deputy Director's Office.
The secretary looked up with a smile as he entered. "Mr. Thornton, did you need to see Col. Barnard?"
"No, Helen, thanks. I wanted to ask you a special favor. I'm leaving on an assignment, but I can't reach MacGyver. Could you see to it that he gets this message?"
Helen accepted the object with a raised eyebrow, but she agreed to give it to MacGyver as soon as she saw him. She had worked with field agents long enough to know that asking questions was a futile exercise.
That still didn't keep her from wondering in her private mind, "What on Earth does Pete Thornton want to say to MacGyver… with an umbrella?"
There's a popular saying: 'Into every life a little rain must fall.' It's one of those clichés that people say to one another when they can't think of anything really useful to say, kinda a way of saying 'Everyone has troubles—get over it' without sounding mean.
I like to look on such situations with a little more optimism, say, 'How do you know you're having a good time, if you don't have a bad time now and again?'
I guess the only question I can ask myself now, as I'm clinging to a vertical rock-face with nothing but my fingernails and eyelids, is 'Am I having a good time or a bad time?'
I haven't fallen yet, so I guess this is a good time!
To keep myself from realizing how very high up above the ground I am, and how extremely mortal I am feeling, I let my mind wander back to my childhood, to times when I'd tackled more than I should have and had come out with more-or-less rewarding results. Old Man McGinnis' palomino hadn't killed me that night, after all, and I had gotten an exciting ride out of the deal, even if Hector had eventually caught up with me and ruined my best pair of Toughskin jeans by ripping a hole in the… well, at least I didn't need stitches… the jeans did, though! Mom wasn't too impressed—I got grounded for a week and had to buy a new pair of school pants out of my allowance.
If I fall off of this cliff—which I'm currently climbing 'somewhere in Central Asia'—I doubt that there are enough pennies in my piggybank to pay for the damages I'll accrue… better to not fall and avoid finding out!
I'd spent the flight out here trying to figure out how a US plane carrying a top-secret experiment package strapped to a missile could go astray in the middle of these Asian badlands. Naturally, the guys who hired me didn't have a lot to say about it, and nobody on board the plane could shed any more light on the subject; they either couldn't talk about it, or they were out of the loop, like me.
I guess I didn't need to know…
Doesn't stop me from wondering, though…