Summary: A Tori and Halo oneshot. Sequel of sorts. Just a way for us to incorporate some fun ideas we've had that we just couldn't bear to pass up. Enjoy!
Disclaimer: For the third time now, we own nothing of National Treasure except our own self-inspired characters.
Authors' Note: Yes, we're back yet again with a third installment of our self-insert series. But before you all get your hopes up, I would just like to reiterate what was said in the summary: this is just a one-shot. I'm afraid neither of us quite feel up to another long, epic endeavor, but in talking about sequel possibilities, we did come up with a few hilarious ideas that we couldn't fit into our last fic, but still just had to see put into action. Including the title, lol. So I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!
I Can't Believe We're Doing This Again
Shouting. Shouting. More Shouting. And then a little more shouting.
Yes, they had come to expect it by now, but no, that didn't make it any easier to sleep through.
Next to her ear, the brunette's husband groaned. "Make it stop…"
"I can't." Haley kept her eyes closed, refusing to concede defeat. "We've tried."
Phil rolled over, and Haley could just imagine him trying to fold the pillow up over his ears to block out the din. When it did no good, he sighed in abject surrender.
"How much longer?" He sounded so pitiful, it was almost endearing.
"I don't know. I can't see the calendar."
With an effort, he raised his head. "One week."
"One week too long," Haley muttered, and squinted her eyes. How she hated being blind without her glasses! "I can't see the clock, either. What time is it?"
"Ugh, it's too early for all this! But how much do you wanna bet Powell's still sleeping right on through it?"
Phil grunted noncommittally. "I'm not gonna bet anything, 'cause I know he's sleeping right on through it. But I didn't think she was such an early riser?"
"She didn't used to be. I swear, it's like she's rearranged her entire schedule around Shaw's, just to irritate him."
Her husband chuckled. "Well, that could be fun – if it wasn't also potentially life-threatening. Does Riley know what he's getting himself into?"
"Hehe, he'll find out soon enough. But it doesn't matter – they love each other anyway. He'll just have to get used to her cold feet."
"What? You think she'll try to back out at the last minute?"
"No, no, not that kind of 'cold feet' – I mean she literally has cold feet. And besides, I doubt they'll have these same kind of problems once they're married."
"Yeah, right – not unless Shaw stops by for a visit."
The shouting continued.
Haley rolled over to face Phil, smiling, and asked, "Do you think this is what it'll be like having kids?"
He grinned right back at her. "Teenagers, maybe. Although, I imagine they would sleep in later."
And then, abruptly, there was silence.
Haley's head perked up. "Do you think they've had enough?" she ventured hopefully.
But at that instant the shouting returned, louder than ever and accompanied by Shaw's unmistakable laughter.
"Or not." Haley proceeded to bury her face in her pillow, knowing all the while it would be of little help.
"All right, that does it." Phil hauled himself out of bed, and Haley wormed closer to the extra-warm spot he had vacated. It was still a strangely pleasant sensation waking up every morning with someone beside her; she was just glad Phil liked her beloved waterbed as much as she did.
Meanwhile, the man himself had swung open the bedroom door and stuck his head out into the hallway. "What the heck is going on out here?"
Shaw turned to him, grinning wickedly. "I turned off the hot water on her."
"Shaw, I am going to kill you!" The feminine screams coming from inside the bathroom had gracefully transitioned from angry and surprised to angry and spiteful.
Her antagonist only chuckled, unfazed and unimpressed. "You're welcome to try, luv, but hopefully this will teach you to just wait your turn."
"Never!" came the impassioned response.
Phil shook his head, disbelieving, as he observed the contest of wills. "Shaw, what's gotten into you, man? I've never seen you let anyone get under your skin like this before."
"I know, but this one's a…special exception."
"Well, don't worry. Only one more week until the big day, and then she's gone."
Shaw looked genuinely disappointed. "But then it won't be any fun around here. Who am I supposed to torment when she's gone? Haley's no fun 'cause she's such a good sport, and the rest of you have all lived with me before, so you've already been through it. I'm gonna be bored out of my mind once this one leaves."
Phil laughed, and clapped his friend on the shoulder as the older man strode over to join him. "Don't worry, I'm sure Ian will come up with some kind of constructive outlet for all that creative energy."
"One can only hope." Shaw suddenly sobered. "We haven't done much of anything since the President pardoned us last year."
"That's because the FBI's been keeping such a close eye on us since then," Phil reminded him. "You know Ian just doesn't want to do anything that could get us thrown back in prison."
"Yeah, but I also know that he's good enough to pull something big and still get away with it if he wanted to. How else do you think he managed to stay out of trouble with the law for all those years? Kid, I still have to tell you about some of the jobs we pulled back in England – long before your time."
"Well, you'll just have to regale me with all the thrilling details sometime."
The two friends then heard the sound of someone deliberately clearing their throat, and they looked back into the bedroom to see Haley, now sitting upright in bed and pointing none too discreetly at Shaw.
"He's gonna get us arrested," she whispered, addressing her husband.
"Again, you mean," he finished with a grin.
"Come on, Haley, give me a break," Shaw defended himself. "All I've done recently is harass that poor girl in the bathroom like there's no tomorrow."
"Yes, I think we can all testify to that," she replied, "but, Shaw, do you really have to make her last days in the world of singleness such a living hell?"
"Naturally. She deserves nothing less, that one. And besides, it's helped distract her from all that nerve-wracking garbage that comes with weddings."
Haley let out her breath in a quick, hapless sigh. There really was no arguing with this guy. No wonder the young lady in question had been so adamant about not letting Shaw walk her down the aisle on her wedding day. It would serve him right if he caught the bouquet or something equally embarrassing for someone of the male persuasion.
Still, he had admittedly surprised them all by actually offering to do it. But clearly, the bride-to-be did not trust him, and with good reason. So she had opted for Patrick Gates instead. Personally, Haley had given Powell that particular honor. It had seemed only fitting, since he had been the first one to suspect the romance developing between her and Phil over three years ago.
"Just don't go messing up anything for the honeymoon, okay?" she pleaded. "A romantic two weeks in Venice is not something to be interfered with."
"Don't worry, Haley," Phil placated her. "Shaw may have done some pretty crazy things in his time, but even he's not stupid enough to mess with a woman on her honeymoon."
"Why, thank you for the compliment, Phyllis; I'm glad to know you think so highly of me. But I do think I'll get that girl a gun for her wedding gift. Being married to Poole, she'll probably need it."
"Don't you have anything on your mind besides guns, Shaw?"
The Englishman stared back up at his tall friend, perplexed. "Sure. Guns anddynamite."
"And a beer bottle."
"Of course – that goes without saying."
Still in bed, Haley laughed until her face hurt. "Well, at least you didn't say 'Guns and Roses'," she at last managed to remark around her side-splitting laughter. But then the brunette grew suddenly serious, rearranging her face into a petulant pout.
"Hey, wait a second – how come I didn't get a gun for my wedding gift?"
"Because Phil already has plenty of his own, and he's not scared of 'em. That computer geek will probably have a heart attack when he sees it, though."
Haley had to choke back another laugh. "Oh, Shaw, I still don't know if I should call you 'terrible' or 'terrible-ly hilarious'."
He winked at her, eyes alight with a familiar mischievous gleam. "Either one works, Sweetheart."
"I thought Phil had a monopoly on calling me 'Sweetheart'. Isn't there a copyright or something?" She raised her eyebrows at him, but the bald Brit only shrugged.
"Even if there is, what's he gonna do about it?" He playfully elbowed the taller man standing next to him. "Phil knows I can still beat the crap out of him any day of the week. Right, kid?"
Phil rolled his dark eyes and shoved his colleague out of the way. "Yeah, sure. Whatever you say, Shaw."
At that moment, the bathroom door swung open, and Tori, dressed in a heavy bathrobe and with her hair wrapped up in a towel, issued forth with a cloud of steam for her entourage. She glared venomously at Shaw, "hmph-ed" with her head held high, and turned on her heel to march off down the hall toward her bedroom.
Shaw chuckled as she stormed away, gleefully rubbing his hands together like a little boy intent on teasing his younger sister to the point of death. "It's just too fun making her mad! Easy, too. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to go eat the rest of her favorite breakfast cereal before she gets downstairs."
And then he was gone, whistling as he went. A very bemused Phil stared after him a while, then came to his senses and shut the door, locking it with pronounced intention. He climbed back into the sloshing waterbed, and Haley snuggled up close to him, seeking refuge under his strong arm. For a few moments, they simply lay there together in blissful silence.
That was, of course, until Haley whispered, "Wait for it. Wait for it…"
"SHAW!" And then the subsequent, mocking laughter.
His breath warm against her ear, Phil let out a weary, longsuffering sigh.
"One more week."
Tori's A/N: Okay, Shaw, definitely not cool, Man! No one messes with my Cap'n Crunch and gets away with it! But anyway, hope you enjoyed. Oh, but there will be one more part of this filled with special features. Hope you enjoy!