Katie Turner swallowed down her nerves as she moved through the hotel, aiming for the door with number 238 hanging off of it. Inside was Special Agent Matt Flannery, from LA, one of the nicest guys she'd ever met, nothing like the jerks that she worked with in the Las Vegas office. Matt had come to Vegas with his partner to assist their very small, less impressive CNU with a high profile kidnapping. They got the scared 10 year-old boy back early this afternoon, and after a few hours downtime, she was ready to ask the handsome agent to dinner. Sure, they lived in two different cities and he might object to getting involved with a coworker, but they weren't that far apart, and Katie knew she'd kick herself if she didn't at least try. So, she knocked on 238, just as giggling punctuated by shrieks began to emanate from inside.
They stopped abruptly, and she thought she heard him telling his companion to hold on. Oh god, he already had a girl in there, how embarrassing. Though she was a little annoyed by the idea, after all, he'd only been in the city two days, and already he picked up some little bimbo to keep his bed warm? Her mother was right, all men really are the same: horny, arrogant, senseless jerks. Then the door opened and he smiled at her, and she couldn't believe that of him.
"Hey Katie, everything okay?" Matt, wearing only his boxers, held the door open just enough so he could stand in the opening, without her seeing his bedmate. Not that Matt was ashamed in the least, but other Agents didn't tend to handle that discovery well.
"Yes, I was actually just here to see if you had dinner plans, but you seem to move faster than I anticipated." It came out a lot nastier than she meant it to, and she immediately winced.
"Sorry, did I offend you?" Now Matt was becoming upset at her judgmental tone.
"Matt, just open the door," a woman's exasperated voice called from inside; a voice Katie recognized. He did as he was told, and his partner, Emily, came to stand beside him, clad only in the hotel bathrobe.
"Wow, does your boss in LA know about this?" She didn't exactly mean to say it, but it was the first thing that came out of her mouth.
"Yeah, she does. We've been seeing each other for a year and a half, without any repercussions in the field, so please spare us the speech. We've heard it before," Matt told her, wrapping an arm around Emily.
"Sorry, I guess I'm just a little surprised. I couldn't tell it from seeing you in the field, and that isn't something that is usually difficult to pick up." She was being completely honest. Usually if somebody was banging their partner, it was very easy to tell just by being around them. These two had seemed complete professionals the entire last two days.
"That's because we can separate work and personal, it's not as hard as you think," Emily defended them. They were tired of getting hostile, negative responses from the local agents when they went on field assignments. After several of these responses they'd gone back to getting two rooms (not that actually used both), and hiding their relationship just to avoid the incessant lectures.
"Right, well then, I'll be going then. Good luck with uh…that." She waved and left without waiting for them to say goodbye. Damn, he actually wasn't a jerk. Double damn, he was already taken.
Emily rolled her eyes and Matt shook his head, as he closed the door, and they meandered back over to the bed.
"At least we skipped the lecture this time," she told him.
"Yeah, but she clearly didn't approve, she was judging." He was more upset than she was from the encounter. He was tired of people making him feel like he was doing something wrong, something bad, by loving Emily.
"Hey, don't worry about her," she told him, turning him to face her and look in her eyes, as they sat down together on the bed. "We know what we have, and we know how much we mean to each other. If other people don't understand that, that's their problem not ours. Besides, since when do you care what anybody else thinks of us?" Normally, it would be Emily who was upset, and Matt trying to sooth her. After all, whatever they did would be more damaging to her than it would ever be to him. Women were judged much more harshly than men in their field.
"I know, and I normally don't give a shit…"
"Why aren't you more upset, you usually are?"
"The last time we were in Phoenix, Clyde, sorry Agent Tompkins, came to your door while you were in the shower, to thank us for our help. I answered your door in a bathrobe, and after he tried to lecture me, I kind of lost it. I got all my anger out then, maybe it was easier because I'd worked with him for two years and knew him." She shrugged, she had been genuinely surprised that Matt hadn't heard all her shouting.
"So you're saying I need to scream at somebody?" He teased.
"No…I'm saying it doesn't matter, she doesn't matter."
"You're right. I'll just go with the sixties hippie philosophy," his serious expression suddenly became a grin. "If loving you is wrong; honey, I don't want to be right."
She laughed at him, as he pulled them down onto the bed, capturing her lips in the process. His fingers made their way back under the bathrobe to gently travel along her abdomen, causing her to jump every so often. When they reached her sides, and began dancing, she started giggling and shrieking once again. Since their plane didn't leave until the next afternoon, they had all night love each other, and every intention of using it.
"Oh Christ, look at all that traffic up ahead," Matt groaned, switching on the radio and pressing buttons, searching for a traffic report.
"Relax, we'll get home," Emily laid a hand on his thigh, and rubbed up and down.
"Not if you keep doing that. No way can I drive with your hand anywhere near there…at least without getting us into an accident." He said, kissing her.
Emily grinned, and removed her hand, choosing to hold his instead.
"Okay folks, looks like we have an accident on route 108, going east to the airport. And this is a big one, several cars and a tractor-trailer, it's going to be real long wait, better switch those flight reservations," a traffic newscaster finally broke in, explaining the jumbo line of cars.
"I'll call the airline, and see when the next flight is." Emily picked up her phone, dialed information, was transferred to the airline, and began a conversation with the attendant.
Matt stuck his head out the window, hoping to see an end to the line of cars, but there literally wasn't one in sight. He couldn't even see the back of the line behind him. Of course, the westbound lane was empty, since no cars could get through.
"That one, yes thank you. I know, we'll be there." Emily finally hung up, exhausted from her negotiation with the airline attendant.
"Sounds like that went well."
"Wonderfully. Southwest and American trade off who goes to LA, and the Bureau always books with Southwest, so we can only trade our flight for one of those. Our original flight was 1:30, and Southwest has the 3:30, which we'll never make with this traffic. Then American has a 4:30, 5:30, and 7:30, and Southwest doesn't come back until 9:15. So we have," she checked her watch, it was only twelve, "six and a half hours to kill before we need to head to the airport."
"It only takes a half hour to get there from the city," he corrected her, as that would put them at the airport at seven.
"Yes, but in the Post-9/11 world, you have to get there two hours early, especially since most of these people are heading the same place, and we're flying into to LAX. They are going to be worse going there, than leaving it." She rattled off the reasons for her calculations, sort of looking up at the ceiling as she thought.
"Yes ma'am. How about we get lunch then?"
"Can we get out of here?" She looked toward the back and the front of the sandwich they were in the middle of.
"Sure we can." He turned the wheel, backing up the tiny bit he could to the car behind him, then turned the wheel in the other direction, and went forward a tiny bit, then he repeated the same thing several times, Emily cringing, and hanging on firmly to the dashboard and door. Finally he had enough room to drive out of the lane, and make a tight u-turn, getting them westbound. "Told you I could."
"Nice job," she rolled her eyes, men and their need to prove driving skills.
"Hey, did you see where we are?" He asked noticing the buildings around them for the first time.
Emily followed his gaze, "cheesy wedding chapel city?"
"Some people travel miles to wed in one of these chapels."
"Good for them. I mean come on Elvis, Aliens, Cowboys, something that looks Halloween themed, what happened to a priest and a white dress? Or hell, even a judge? Why do people feel they need all the excess, all the show, shouldn't it be enough just to promise each other forever? If you need some gimmick like these, not to mention several cocktails to tie the knot, what's the point?"
Matt grinned at her diatribe and pulled over, a sudden idea coming to him.
"What are you doing?" He pulled them onto a piece of road between the Aliens and Elvis.
"Are you a gamblin' woman Miss Lehman?" He asked with a smile and a bad Old West accent.
"Depends on the gamble I'm taking," she smirked. What was he up to?
"We haven't gambled at all since we've been in Sin City, so I thought we'd gamble on a little coin toss." He watched for her reaction, and she nodded for him to continue. "Tails we go get ourselves lunch, heads we walk into one of those little chapels and say our nuptials."
Her eyebrows rose and her mouth opened; had he really just suggested they flip a coin to maybe get married?
He knew she'd never do it, and while that disappointed a small part of him, another part counted on it.
Emily realized he was bluffing, expecting her not to agree, but she couldn't resist his little challenge. "Sure, why not."
Now his eyes bugged out, did she really just agree to that? She's bluffing, she had to be bluffing, but rather than end their game, he grabbed a coin and tossed it in the air. It landed on the back of his right hand, and he quickly covered it with his left, before either of them could see. He swallowed nervously, suddenly not sure if he was dreaming.
Emily's heart was beating eight-hundred miles a minute, pounding in her ears, coursing in every vein. She watched him lift his hand up to reveal George Washington's powder-wigged head. Oh. My. God.
Matt's eyes were wide as he stared at her, were they actually going to hold each other to this bet?
The next morning Cheryl was in her office, checking over paperwork in completed case files. Making sure her agents turned in all their paperwork, and that she'd thrown in her own. If she'd known how much more paperwork she'd be shuffling, she'd might have stayed a negotiator. Speaking of negotiators, her two best walked in together, back from a field assignment in Sin City. If she could trust anyone to behave there it was Emily and Matt; though Matt was rubbing off a little more on his partner than she'd like. She stepped out to greet them, and see how it went.
"Hey, how was Vegas? I heard the kid was found and returned, the mayor already called Washington with praise, and they called me, very pleased with both of you." She smiled at them, chances are, if she gets a kudos call from D.C. it was about Matt and Emily.
"Yeah, Carter wasn't physically harmed, but he'll need therapy for a while. He's a sweet kid." They had been there when HRT stormed in and got the boy, and the scared child ran for the first woman he saw, still untrusting after four men had held him captive. He clung to Emily, until they were able to get him to his mother and father.
"Glad to hear it, and everything else went well?" Matt and Emily both froze, what was she talking about? Did she know already?
"Everything else?" Matt's voice cracked slightly as he asked the question.
"Yeah, hotel, travel, Bureau credit card, that everything else." Cheryl looked at them curiously, what was wrong with them? Oh god, she hoped they didn't have another fight.
"Oh, yeah, all good. We had to postpone our return flight because of an accident on the highway to the airport, but otherwise all good…" Matt stared at his shoes.
"Are you guys…okay?" Cheryl asked, eyebrows knit and mouth set in a tense line.
"What, yeah of course."
"Sure why wouldn't we be?" They commented simultaneously, adding to her suspicions.
"Hello? I'm looking for Matt Flannery?" A man in a FedEx outfit walked in with a slim package.
"Right here." He waved the man over.
"Hey, I've got an overnight, sign for package for you from Vegas." Emily grabbed the package quickly, as Matt signed, both hoping to get the man out ASAP.
"What did you get from Vegas?" Cheryl asked, dubious expression on her face.
"Oh, nothing," Emily lied poorly.
Cheryl looked from one to the other; something was definitely off with them. "Okay, in my office, we need to talk."
She watched both faces fall, as they walked in behind her, seemingly realizing they couldn't hide whatever it was they were trying to keep secret.
"So, somebody tell me what's going on." She asked, standing in front of them, leaning against her desk.
Emily sighed, and opened the package, examining the contents briefly, before turning it over to Cheryl.
The first thing she saw looked like a wedding photo. Emily was in a simple white dress and Matt in a tux, as they smiled at the camera, a small handful of peach roses in her hand. She glanced up at them, her mouth falling open slightly, then back down to the next picture. They were slow dancing, pressed very close together, Emily resting her head on Matt's shoulder. She flipped to the next picture, which was a lot less alien to her than the first two. This was a candid of the couple, they were facing each other, engrossed in some conversation, two flutes with traces of Champaign at the bottom in front of them. She flipped again to see what she'd feared, a marriage certificate issued in the state of Nevada.
"What did you two do?" She asked, finally looking up at them, shock written all over her face.
"Uh, we thought that was pretty self-explanatory," Matt mumbled, as Emily elbowed him.
"No, I get that you got married, but what possessed you? I mean you don't look drunk." Now, that she could understand, but it didn't seem to be the case.
"You don't want to know," Matt told her firmly.
"Oh, yes I do."
"No Cheryl, trust me, you really don't," Emily tried.
"No, no, I really, really want to know."
Matt and Emily exchanged glances, and then Matt shrugged and turned once again to face Cheryl. "We flipped for it."
If she was surprised before, there were no words to describe what she was feeling right then. It was as if they just told her they were really British Intelligence, undercover in the FBI, 005 and 006, right ahead of James Bond himself. She blinked and then went behind her desk and sat for a few seconds, before abruptly picking up the phone.
"Lia, I need you in here now." She didn't even wait for her to respond, just hung up and waited, until the analyst entered, glancing at Matt and Emily in confusion. She was followed by Duff and Frank, who'd been with her when Cheryl called, and were as alarmed as Lia.
"Everything okay?" She watched Matt and Emily sink down a little further in their chairs, as Cheryl handed off the stack of paper, marriage license on top.
Lia gasped and her eyes bugged out, causing Frank and Duff to start reading over her shoulders, jaws dropping at the words on the paper.
"I don't believe it, how could you not tell me!" Lia looked at her best friend accusingly, as the negotiator slid further into her chair.
"It wasn't planned Lia, we did it yesterday."
"Tell them why, because that's the part I think I might have misheard," Cheryl instructed.
Emily sighed, and straightened up a bit before admitting, "we flipped a quarter."
"What…?" Duff vocalized what they were all thinking.
"Tails we get lunch, Heads we go to one of the wedding chapels. It landed on heads." Matt spoke as if he were discussing something, anything, logical.
"Seriously?" Frank stared at them as they nodded. "How the hell much did you two have to drink?"
"They were sober," Cheryl filled in.
"No way, you had to be wasted to do that. At least Emily had to be."
"Nope Frank, not a drop of alcohol in me when I said my vows," she answered, proudly. At least they hadn't done it because they were wasted.
"I can't believe it, I wish I could have be here to see you two get married!" Lia gushed, seemingly the only one to move passed the shocked phase.
"You may be in luck, there's a DVD in there," Matt pointed to the pile in her hands. She immediately dug through, the pictures and pulled out the disc.
"Quick Cheryl, put it on." Matt and Emily remained in their seats, as the foursome gathered around Cheryl's computer screen to watch the video. It opened with a god-awful little ditty from the little chapel, before Matt and Emily appeared on screen, smiling at each other, hands joined, a minister before them. He opened with a short speech about marriage, before leading them in their vows. They had to turn the volume up to hear Matt and Emily, because it appeared they were almost whispering, intent that their vows were only for each other. Then they said their 'I dos', shared a very passionate kiss, and stood simply holding each other for awhile, as the camera went to black.
"Oh congratulations!" Lia ran over and hugged them both.
"You didn't even look nervous," Cheryl commented, still in disbelief.
Matt shrugged, "I suppose we weren't."
"Well then, congratulations." She smiled finally, and came around and hugged them. Duff and Frank followed with their own congratulatory hugs and handshakes, as men do.
Frank suddenly started cracking up, and they all looked at him for an explanation. "Cheryl sends the two of you to Vegas once, and you can't stay out of the wedding chapels?"
So, I thought I'd do a different take on an old, often used theme, just fun fluff. Hope you all enjoyed, thanks for reading, and thanks to those who review.