A/N: There wasn't much left so I didn't want to wait for a reason to post. Now I can work on 2C without being bogged down by fluff.


Chapter 11:

The trio had just located their seats when the lights in the auditorium dimmed. Casey looked behind them at the other parents, scanning the crowd anxiously for one in particular.

"Is Ellie still mad?" he asked.

Sarah, sitting beside him, looked at him in disbelief. "She's missing her niece's first performance, what do you think?"

Casey grunted, turning to face the front again. "I wasn't going to hurt him," he reiterated for what felt like the hundredth time. "I just wanted him to get off the playground equipment."

"I believe your exact words were: When I get my hands on you, I'm going to skin you alive—"

"I was kidding!" Casey said. "Kid can't take a joke."

Sarah looked at him, shaking her head. "The kid can't even tie his shoelaces, Casey. Stop trying to justify what you did, you were arrested. The law isn't on your side." After a moment to collect her thoughts she added: "And neither are we."

Chuck stared straight ahead, unwilling to put himself between the two.

"I thought after the favour we were even," Casey grumbled.

Sarah grumped. Had she said that? "Fine." Twisting her lip, she realized she was pretty grateful for his help. "Thanks for pulling through."

Casey shrugged. "I figured the techs owed me a favour or two. Besides..." he drawled with a wink. "How could I let my little girl down?"

"Actually, Casey," Chuck interrupted, leaning forwards in his seat to see past Sarah. "She's my little girl."

Casey smirked. "What? Walker never told you about our thing on the side?"

Chuck blanched but before he could say a word, Sarah was already working on the answer.

She punched Casey in the arm—hard, and yanked his tie down, threatening to strangle him. "I don't care if we are in an auditorium full of children, I will kill you John Casey if you so much as insinuate one more word—"

Casey laughed despite the pain that was being inflicted on him. "You deserve it for all the crap you said about me and St. Clair."

Chuck rolled his eyes. He tugged Sarah away from Casey before they were both arrested for misconduct.

"Shh...the play's starting."

_

It's a school production with toddlers and cheap cardboard cutouts but the three in the audience couldn't have been more enthralled.

"Oh my God, there she is!" Sarah whispered, excitedly squeezing her husband's hand.

Charlotte toddled onto the stage with a slew of other toddlers in pseudo-lambskin but she was by far the most precious lamb. No bias there, naturally. It was a combination of her size and the costume itself, but the little girl epitomized the innocence and sweetness of the nursery tale.

Charlotte gave a little half-wave for the audience, and then toddled behind the other lambs to hide from the spot-light.

"That's a really nice costume, Sarah," Chuck whispered, pecking her on the cheek.

Sarah narrowed her eyes at him but she was too excited to say anything. The costume was hand-made, Casey had assured, just not by her mother. The disaster of Sarah's good intentions had already been put somewhere where it would never again see the light of day.

Charlotte didn't speak a word but the three sitting in the third row of the auditorium lapped it up all the same. If there was an award for standing still and not making a sound, she'd win hands down. Everything went along without a glitch.

Then, ten minutes into the play, one of the toddlers tripped over his costume and fell flat on his face. Padded by layers of wool, it didn't even look like he had actually hit the ground but everyone on stage froze. The toddlers looked to one another, looking as lost and misguided as a flock of actual sheep.

Then Charlotte, the model lamb, spoke up.

"Aw...damn it." The pronunciation was spot on and in the suddenly silent auditorium, her little voice was ample to carry across the room.

Chuck choked and Sarah turned to Casey with a look that spoke full of ill intentions.

Charlotte realized her mistake and looked to her uncle for help.

"Aw crap," they both said in unison.


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That's all folks, it's been fun! Thanks for reading!