Title: Save My Bike
Author's Note: Written for the commentfic prompt: Leverage, teamfic, First time Eliot got hurt to protect them
Disclaimer: I do not own Leverage or profit from this.
Genre: Gen, One-Shot, h/c
Spoilers: None, but set relatively early.
Police checkpoints were the worst. Nate was pretty sure everyone in the car would agree to that. They were especially bad when three of your passengers were internationally wanted thieves and there was a $3 million dollar stolen 8th century bible in your trunk.
"Hardison, is this ID gonna pass inspection?" Nate asked when they were three cars back from the checkpoint.
"Visually, yeah. If he runs it through a scanner well, I won't say it's gonna be 'bad' because that wouldn't even begin to cover it," he replied from the backseat with Parker. He received a glare from his companions and put his hands up in defeat. "I'm sorry but magnetic strips are HARD, so sue me."
"What's going on?" Eliot asked over the com line. He was about a half mile back on his motorcycle, having refused to be stuck in a crowded car between Hardison and Parker despite the chilly Chicago weather.
"Police checkpoint, it got set up faster than I've ever seen. This could be a problem. You might want to find another way back into town," Sophie suggested.
"And come pick me up before you do," Parker requested, considering jumping out of the car as they inched closer to the front of the line.
"I'll take care of it," Eliot said calmly and they could just barely hear the sounds of his bike revving.
"Eliot, these cops are just doing their jobs, you're not going to hurt them," Nate ordered. "Besides, that would just bring us a whole lot more trouble. Not to mention the fact that they've got guns. Just hang back, I'll try to talk us out of this."
"You can never make things easy, can you Nate?" Eliot asked tightly, but they were next in line and Nate was rolling down his window as he put on his best innocent face.
In the backseat Hardison and Parker turned around to see a single headlight approaching behind them, fast.
"Uh, Nate …" Hardison warned him, pointing behind them.
"He's coming to get me," Parker whispered excitedly.
Just as the patrolmen started to ask for Nate's ID the cop turned around to watch as the speeding motorcycle flew down the highway towards the checkpoint without showing any signs of slowing.
"Hey, stop!" the cop yelled moving into the middle of the road.
"Eliot, no!" Nate shouted, watching as the hitter headed straight for the barricade. Then at the last second the bike turned sharply. The highway had no barrier and Eliot went off road, going completely around the police checkpoint before getting back on the cement and speeding off. That was all the cops needed to see and every policeman in the area got in their cars to take off after the speeding motorcycle, assuming him to be the lone thief they were after.
"That works too," Parker noted happily, waving as they all left. Nate wasted no time starting the car again, eager to find an off ramp in case there were more checkpoints.
"Eliot, I don't suppose you have a plan beyond distracting the cops from us do you?" Nate asked somewhat flippantly, hating when his people went off plan and beyond grateful the cops hadn't immediately shot at the hitter.
"Actually I do," Eliot replied. "There's a bridge coming up soon, I'll lose them there but I'm gonna need to be picked up."
"Where?" Sophie asked.
"That's a bit up in the air. Uh, Hardison?" Eliot said, his voice becoming slightly more worried as he drove.
"Is my GPS waterproof?"
"Get him on the couch. Parker, start a fire. Sophie, blankets are in the closet, end of the hall."
As the girls went to their tasks Nate and Hardison dragged an almost unconscious, soaking wet, shaking Eliot over to the couch.
"'m alright," he muttered from blue lips even as his eyes slipped shut.
"Yeah, most people who jump off bridges into frozen rivers are fine, I'd totally believe that," Hardison replied sarcastically, huffing as he maneuvered the hitter onto the couch cushions.
"Eliot, stay awake," Nate ordered when he saw Eliot's eyes had closed. They opened again, just enough to glare in Nate's direction. "You're gonna be okay."
"Get him out of those clothes," Sophie instructed when she returned with a pile of blankets that she dropped on the couch before disappearing down the hall again.
"He ain't gonna like that," Hardison muttered.
"Tough," Parker replied as she forced her way through the two men and started to pull off Eliot's boots. Two knives fell from each piece of footwear but Parker was too focused on her job to steal them and just pushed them aside instead. Behind them a fire crackled as Nate worked on Eliot's pants while Hardison removed his jacket and shirts trying not to stare at the scars revealed underneath. When he was naked they wrapped him up tightly in several blankets and pushed the couch as close to the fireplace as possible.
"His breathing's not great," Hardison announced ominously. Everyone chose to ignore that particular comment.
"Parker, go boil some water so we can soak his feet," Nate requested. Just as the blond disappeared Sophie reappeared from the bathroom with a brush and blow-dryer.
"We have to dry his hair," she explained and the others agreed. He would not get warm with wet hair.
Eliot was still shaking violently and though his eyes opened and closed every now and then he wasn't truly conscious. It took some shifting but eventually Nate and Hardison got the hitter sitting up enough for Sophie to brush and dry his hair just as Parker returned with the water for his feet.
The night went on like that for some time. None of them resting as they were constantly changing Eliot's blankets, taking his vitals or checking the fire or drying the old blankets in the dryer so they could be used again. It was four hours until Eliot stopped shaking and seemed to sleep fitfully.
When there was nothing more to be done the four team members sat on chairs behind the couch, not able to stand the intense heat of the fire themselves. They all just stared at the fire for awhile, deep in thought until Parker spoke up.
"Why did he do that?"
Hardison shrugged, "Not a whole lot of other ways to get the cops off your tail. Faking your own death works."
"It almost wasn't a fake," Nate mumbled, elbows on his knees and a drink dangling from his fingers.
"He could have just left. We warned him about the cops, he could have just ran," Parker pointed out.
"He probably figured it would be easier for the four of us to bust him out of jail, than for him to bust us out," Hardison guessed but that just seemed to make Parker more confused.
"How did he know we would bust him out if he got caught?"
Sophie looked at her with a knowing smile, "Parker, would you have broken Eliot out of jail?"
"Yeah," she replied without hesitation.
"Then there you go. We all know each other now, he knows us. He knew we'd come back for him," Sophie explained. "He trusted us to be there."
"No one's ever trusted me before," Parker replied quietly, looking at the floor.
"Hey," Hardison said softly, touching her arm. "I trust you."
"Me too," Sophie added.
They looked at Nate. He waved them off, "You're all a bunch of thieves! But yeah."
Parker smiled brightly, "Thanks."
"If y'all are done being sentimental, I'm trying to get some sleep."
They all started at Eliot's voice and then laughed lightly.
"Sorry," Parker whispered loudly.
"S'alright," he replied, still not moving from the couch.
"Get some rest," Nate ordered. "We'll leave you alone."
Eliot could hear them walking away and knew it might be the only chance he had to say what needed to be said.
They all stopped and turned, not saying anything when Eliot paused and then finally added:
"Thanks … for saving my bike."
The team smiled. Eliot's bike was at the bottom of the river.
Hope you enjoyed, just a little h/c nugget.