Title: Changing Tactics

Author: Jedi Buttercup

Rating: K+

Disclaimer: The words are mine; the world is not.

Summary: Perhaps she had been hasty in identifying Sheriff Carter as the town's weak point. 450 words.

Spoilers: Eureka post-3.2 "What About Bob?"

Notes: Week 2 entry for the eurekatag community.


"It's not going to be the same when you're gone," the sheriff said, his words transmitted over the internal network of cameras in Lab 27 to a feed on Eva Thorne's laptop. "Not by a long shot."

Eva sighed in frustration, chin propped on her hand, as she watched Jack Carter and the hologram avatar of his friend, Dr. Deacon, stare off toward the artificial sunset. Their body language indicated a significant level of familiarity; it seemed that even Eureka's jack-of-all-trades and recently revealed traitor had not been untouched by the sheriff's inexplicable brand of charm.

Perhaps she had been hasty in identifying him as the weak point when she'd drawn up her strategy for reshaping the town's operations to her specifications. As the most notable-- and least intelligent-- newcomer in a town largely populated by insular geniuses, fingering him as the scapegoat for her initial changes had seemed like the natural choice. But rather than reacting to the data with suspicion and alarm, the town's notables had closed rank around him instead.

Even Dr. Stark, whom Eva had assessed as a natural ally when planning her approach, had referred to the good sheriff as one of Global Dynamics' "greatest human assets" when she'd seized the chance to get the interfering law officer and his most obvious supporter out of her hair. For all their harsh words and apparent competition over Dr. Blake's affections, Stark and Carter showed the same lack of self-consciousness in one another's personal space as the sheriff exhibited with Blake herself, or Dr. Deacon, or any other of the denizens of the town she'd observed interacting with him.

Quite simply, the man seemed to be everyone's friend. And despite the very real increase in chaos represented by the graph since his arrival, he also seemed to have an improbable instinct for piecing together just the right clues to solve each problem that fell into the town's lap.

A change of tactics seemed to be in order. If Eva couldn't dislodge this potential thorn in her side by brute force methods, perhaps she could distract him instead-- by giving him what he wanted.

Yes, that had possibilities, she concluded. It ought to keep his focus away from her maneuverings and on his personal life instead-- and clearly, the best place to start would be to arrange the pardon and release of Henry Deacon from his prison sentence.

Ah well. She could already see several possibilities for making lemonade from that sour necessity; she had time on her side, and the complete support of the Department of Defense. Her success was guaranteed, despite the initial roadblocks she had encountered.

"Very well," she murmured, and picked up the phone.

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