TITLE: Dance with the Devil
SUMMARY: Danny decides to prove Lindsay wrong.
SPOILERS: 4x03 "You Only Die Once"
DISCLAIMER: I still don't own the show or the characters.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: A little post-ep from Wednesday's episode, just because it popped into my head.
Unbeta'd, so all mistakes are my own.
Dance with the Devil
Lindsay had absolutely no idea where Danny was. They'd had to cancel their dinner plans when the suspect's car came in, but he had promised to make it up to her once they finally closed the case. Well, here it was, nearly midnight, with all perpetrators behind bars, and Danny was nowhere to be found. She had half-expected him to be the one to find her, bouncing on the balls of his feet like he did when he was excited about something. He surprised her like this a lot, taking her out on spontaneous dates, stretching their lunch break to the limit by insisting that they go all the way to Little Italy to eat. Those reasons were precisely why she thought it odd that he was missing in action.
She eventually found him hunched over a table in the trace lab. His back was to her, so she couldn't tell what he was doing, but he was mumbling to himself. He did that sometimes – talked to himself while he was working, generally when he probably thought no one could hear him. She was unable to make out any words, just indistinguishable grunts. He had shed his lab coat, and his jacket was draped over one of the stools, so he had obviously intended to seek her out and gotten sidetracked. As she made her way into the room, she realized just what had him so distracted.
He was playing with the self-healing material from the suspect's car. She bit her lip to keep from laughing as he pounded at the slab of metal with a hammer, then hooked it up to the battery and watched it reshape itself.
"Shouldn't that be in the evidence lockup?" she asked, grinning, as she made her way around the table so that she could face him.
He glanced up at her, and she marveled at the look on his face. He looked like a kid on Christmas morning who couldn't wait to play with his new toy. "This is so cool." He put another dent in the metal, then eagerly attached it to the battery with the clamps. "You know, if my car had been made out of this when I was a kid, my old man wouldn't have been able to ground me half those times."
Lindsay rolled her eyes, knowing full well that Danny's bravado was all talk. He may very well have considered himself a hellion when he was younger, but she knew that most – if not all – of his stories were exaggerated. She crouched down to meet his eye level. "So you got into a lot of accidents in high school?"
"Oh, yeah," Danny said, in that same tone he used when he spoke of his time in the music industry. He had once told her that he 'played for a while'. She eventually learned that he was the bass player in a band in high school that basically frequented the drummer's garage. She thought it was cute that he still tried to impress her. "Me and Louie used to take the car over to the New Rochelle Mall and drag race some of the guys in the parking lot."
"Wow," Lindsay deadpanned, assuming that it was more Louie than Danny who did the racing. She was fairly certain that Louie would not have let Danny do that in his car. "So you were a regular Speed Racer, huh?"
He froze mid-motion, the hammer poised above his head ready to strike, and fixed her with a glare. "Actually, I used to pretend I was Batman."
She smiled. "Because that makes it better?"
He dropped the hammer. "All right. That's it. We're going back to my apartment, and we're going to watch every Batman movie ever made until you agree that the Batmobile is cooler than the Mach 5."
Lindsay made a face. "Every Batman movie ever made? I assume you're not including Batman and Robin among those, since that can hardly qualify as a Batman movie."
Danny shook his head. "The main character is Batman, ergo it technically counts as a Batman movie. The performance of the lead actor can't be taken into consideration when you're attempting to classify them."
She secretly loved it when they argued. Danny argued everything so passionately, so seriously, even something as ridiculous as which fictional car was better. The more involved he was in an argument, the more serious he got, and the more frantic his gestures became. Like now, as he tried to convince her of the finer points of the fourth Batman movie, he was waving his arms above his head. It was reminiscent of their debate on the merits of the designated hitter.
"And just because you don't like George Clooney doesn't mean you can totally discount an entire movie from the franchise," Danny finished, slamming his palms down on the table.
Lindsay cocked an eyebrow. "I'm not sitting through that movie. It's a disgrace to the good name of Batman." She waited a beat, letting that sink in, before she added, "And the Mach 5 kicks the Batmobile's ass."
"You have yet to offer up any concrete proof to substantiate your claim." He folded his arms across his chest, and she enjoyed the view of his biceps to which she was being treated.
"It's not a claim, Danny." She matched his posture. "I don't have to back it up. It's my opinion."
"Well, it's wrong."
Lindsay made a disgusted noise in the back of her throat. Danny could not stand to be wrong. She actually found his stubbornness rather endearing, but she wasn't about to let him know that. "Oh, really? Well, I think I'm right. And so I am going to go back to my apartment and have a Speed Racer marathon." She gave him a smile and made her way back around the table. "Good night." She dropped a chaste kiss on his lips and headed for the door.
She was almost out into the hallway when she heard his voice behind her.
She stopped but didn't turn around, that smile still playing on the corner of her lips. "Did you want something, Mr. Messer?"
She felt his hand on her forearm and craned her neck to look at him. He ran his fingers lightly down her arm, and she shivered from his touch. He gripped her hand firmly in his, then turned her around, and she was left speechless by the look in his eyes. His face was soft, the way it normally was when he looked at her, and his eyes had darkened into a smoky cobalt color. She had once told him that when he looked at her like that, it made her think that all he had to do was concentrate hard enough and all her clothes would just vanish. So naturally, he gave her that look quite a bit.
"Miss Monroe," he said, his voice low and husky, "have you ever danced with the devil by the pale moonlight?"
She blushed all the way to her hairline, even though there was nothing remotely sexual about what he'd said. It was the tone of his voice, more than anything. That was the tone he used when he was trying to seduce her. And he was very, very good at seducing her. Though, truthfully, it required very little effort. She was crazy about him. He could say something completely nonsensical, and she would kiss him just to shut him up.
"I can't say that I have," she murmured.
He licked his lips. "Would you like to?"
She laughed to cover up the fresh wave of arousal that threatened to knock her over, but she knew Danny could tell regardless. "So you're the devil, are you? I've always wondered what he looked like."
Danny said nothing in response to that. He only smirked, tightening his grip on her fingers and leading her down the hallway to the elevator. She wanted to ask where they were going, but as he hit the button for the top floor, she realized that he was taking her to the roof. She felt herself smiling and dropped her eyes to stare at the floor, hoping Danny didn't see the flush that was creeping up her cheeks.
It was chilly – New York City had finally caught on to the fact that it was October – but she was comfortable in her jacket and warmed by Danny's touch, simple as it was, as he led her across the roof to a fairly open spot. He motioned that she stay where she was, and he fished something out of his coat pockets – his iPod.
"This doesn't exactly count as moonlight," she said, glancing up at the sky. The moon was visible, but the light was coming from the nearby buildings. From this vantage point, she could even see the bright blob of neon that was Times Square.
"Well," Danny shrugged, fiddling with the speakers he had produced from God knows where, "it's as close as we're going to get in Manhattan."
Lindsay smiled faintly as the first chords of music came from the speakers. "It's nights like these when I miss Montana the most." She sensed Danny come up behind her even before he wrapped his arms around her and pulled her against him. She leaned into him. "I love autumn. It's always been my favorite season."
"Hmmm," Danny murmured, pressing a kiss to her temple. "I always preferred winter. Matched my mood most of the time."
She took a deep breath, inhaling the crisp scent of fall, and nearly burst out laughing when she recognized the song Danny had chosen. She leaned back to look at him and said, "Well, you also think that the Batmobile is better than the Mach 5. So I guess nobody's perfect."
Danny groaned and spun her around, then pulled her close to him again. She gripped his right hand firmly, bracing her other hand on his chest. She snuggled as close to him as humanly possibly, breathing him in, and he held her in place with a hand at the small of her back. "Okay, you also have to take the driver into account. Wouldn't you much rather be Bruce Wayne than Speed Racer?"
Lindsay rested her head on Danny's shoulder. "No. For starters, Speed has a much cooler name. He also has a genuine occupation."
"Race car driver can hardly be considered a genuine occupation." He spun her around a couple of times, letting his fingers trail along the exposed skin of her back.
"At least he works for a living." She cupped his cheek, then ran her hand through his hair, making it spike.
Danny rolled his eyes as he turned into her touch. "Bruce Wayne doesn't need to work. He owns several major corporations, all of which he oversees."
"Last time I checked, 'billionaire playboy' was not on the list of occupations. Besides, Bruce Wayne is a flake. He's with a different girl in every movie. Speed is a much more loyal character."
"I'll give you that," Danny said, his tone soft. The hand on her back gently found its way underneath her shirt. "But I have to call his sexuality into question."
Lindsay lightly slapped Danny on the shoulder. "Danny!"
"I'm just saying. Yeah, he has a girlfriend, but they never do anything. He also wears a neckerchief."
"So do sailors."
Danny spun her one last time, then brought her crashing back to him before lowering her into a dip. "I fail to see how that's a viable counterargument."
She opened her mouth to respond but was silenced instantly as Danny's lips pressed insistently against hers. She was vaguely aware that he was pulling her back to her feet, because all she could truly focus on was the way Danny's mouth moved over hers. She parted her lips eagerly when his tongue requested entrance, returning the gesture with a thorough exploration of her own. She fisted her hands in his hair and pulled him even closer, trembling a bit as his arms wound their way around her waist. She knew that part of the reason behind the sudden kiss was because he wanted to win the argument, but she didn't particularly care. If he wanted to kiss her like this, she wasn't about to complain.
When they finally broke apart, and she had managed to somewhat recover her senses – and her breath – she said, "You're the devil."
He smirked and ran the pad of his thumb lightly along her bottom lip. "I think we established that."
She cocked an eyebrow. "And the Mach 5 is still better."