F I R E W O R K K I S S E S
A -Connor/Abby and Sarah/Becker- fic.
You have been invited to the ARC Halloween 2009 Party.
It was always the most unexpected things in life, that were the best.
They were in the utility room and had been for quite a while, every now and again someone had come in to check in on them and they had shooed them away with either a few words or a bad look. They were working out the plan for Halloween 2009, the best Halloween yet. They had been looking forward to this for months, slowly working things out, formulating a plan. And today the day had come, tonight under the darkness, some people were going to regret they ever even met them. The ARC had been slightly decorated for the time of the year, with cobwebs hanging from the ceiling, and balloons attached to the main gate, which Lester had promptly took down. Sarah and Abby had been spending all day setting up the ARC for the festivities, drafting in the receptionists to do all the hard work. Anna, had been the most helpful, hanging huge skeletons from the walls. Of course Lester's office was Halloween free, with not one speck of the holiday season to be found. Like the grinch, but much much worse. They formed a circle, with coffee to talk about it. Their check list before the party, they were going to take a stop on the way to totally annihilate Christine Johnson's house.
"Cover of darkness" Connor asked"Check" Sarah smiled"Stunning outfits?' she countered"Check""Eggs""Check" shouted Abby from the ARC's kitchen, well kitchenette. Lester would never pay for a full kitchen they could use to cook things in. It had a fridge and microwave and a couple of cupboards. dropped his voice "Fireworks?"Connor grinned "Homemade for illegal boom"Sarah's face spread into a wide smile. "Excellent"James Lester burst in unannounced, causing Abby to drop the cutlery she was holding, sending it clattering to the floor with a loud, suspicious noise."Secret meeting?' he asked a little too sarcastically for the teams liking, they glared at his back hoping he could feel the smiled falsely "No sir, just disusing protocols" he said hastily shoving the wire cutters into his back pocket, he had absolutely no idea what the hell protocols were, just sounded like something Lester might just approve of. Things to make Lester happy: See also things that make the team swanned out again and the smile on Becker's face went sour, falling like a felled tree.
'If only he knew, that we where going to dig out that embarrassing picture of him at the Christmas party.'
'You didn't' Abby choked on her drink.
'Maybe I did, Abigail, maybe I did.'
Later that day.
They all couldn't wait to get home, last year had seen Stephen, Connor, Cutter and Abby go out and get drunk. But this time it was personal, because all year both Lester and Christine had been slowly ticking them off, more and more…until finally they decided that they would get their revenge on them, in a double attack. Becker personally had it in for Christine after the incident with the Terror Birds, anyway. And the reason Danny Quinn wasn't coming with them was that a certain someone was in a complete and utter mood with the man after some words were shared yesterday. Words such as 'solider boy' and 'Nancy G.I. Joe'
They sat huddled round a table in the ARC cafeteria, Connor and Abby sharing chips and talking about things in general. The party would be in full swing about nine, so they worked out Christine would be in at seven, giving her a full visual of their plan. The would have to time it right though, or she would suspect it was them. Connor speculated, that they would have about ten minutes to execute it and get away.
Connor had a bone to pick with Becker, Abby had said that he hadn't even asked Sarah to the party yet. Abby had asked Connor the minute she had heard and of course he had said yes, that way when Caroline had asked him, Abby had got up in her face and told her where she could go shove her invite. Abby was truthfully making him say this to Becker, so when this happened it was mostly her fault.
'Ever thought Becker, you should step up and say something to Sar- AHHHH!'
Becker viciously kicked Connor under the table and smiled at him sarcastically, Sarah frowned and glanced at Becker, who was blushing quite badly. She pretended not to notice the way he was diverting his eyes. Abby glared daggers at him, and kicked him back. Hard. He yelped and she smiled, falsely like he had just done.
'Im sorry Becker, was that your leg?'
Danny came and sat down next to them with a heavy sigh and everyone turned to see Becker glaring at him in a way that would imply that unless he moved, something would be torn from his vital anatomy, until finally Danny pushed his chair back and stalked away, they turned to watch him leave.
'What was that all about' Connor asked
'Nothing' spat Becker a little too fast and Sarah turned to look.
'If this is about yesterday..'
'Yes, it's about yesterday Sarah!'
'Stop being stupid, it was a couple of names.'
'He annoys me non-stop, and he can apologise.'
Abby and Connor just looked at each other and carried on shovelling chips into their mouths, and with a blatant disregard for Lester's sign saying;
'DO NOT EAT FOOD OR KEEP ANIMALS IN THE ARC!'
They carried it to the main operations room, sat near the ADD and carried on. The chairs there were office ones, so they turned around, and had wheels. Which was not a good idea, when Connor went spinning across the room, spilling chips everywhere-just as Lester walked past. Hastily he had apologised, and Lester had shown him the sign and then hit him with it.
When finally it had been time to return home, they had agreed to meet at seven, so the plan could be executed perfectly.
Connor pulled his outfit on, and watched Abby finish her make-up. She had white skin, and black and blue eyes. Red lips, painted with lipstick, and her hair was all back-combed and had sprays of brilliant, bright orange in it. She looked fantastic in fact if he didn't know any better, he wouldn't be able to recognise her. Nice ripped black and green dress, with the cloak over the top for the deed beforehand.
'Connor, sit.' she commanded, pointing to the chair.
He sat down in the chair and closed his eyes, ready to be plastered in cosmetics. She sat on his lap, straddling him so she could reach his face.
'Hold still!' she complained, and he sighed, closing his eyes.
She began to smooth the white make up on his already pale skin. She turned his head, and started to apply the eyeliner, drawing it across his eyes, making his large eyes even bigger, she took out the red glitter and wiped it under his eyes. He opened them to stare at her, his pupils darker in contrast to the eyeliner and she clapped her hands.
'You look, brilliant!'
'You too. Give us a mirror.'
He examined himself, looking like a zombie/vampire thing. Face completely white, in contrast to his shock of black hair. His eyes were hugely decorated with eyeliner, but the bottoms were glittering red. He looked at bit freaky actually. The flat was decorated with pumpkins, and cobwebs, spiders handing from the ceiling and Sid and Nancy in costume, looking like little vampires. They came skidding up and Abby disentangled herself to feed them a chocolate, which normally they weren't allowed and not to be left out, Rex chirped and nudged her arm. She laughed as the doorbell rang, and she put her hood up.
She opened it and stepped back so that Becker and Sarah could enter, looking equally as dressed up. It was weird to see Becker not in his usual military outfit, but he looked amazing.
His face was white too, but he had white powder shook into his black hair, making him look spooky and older, he had even painted his nails black. But he too had eyeliner on, both the bottom and the top of his eyes, with red eye shadow dotted around his face, fake blood painted on his cheeks and mouth. Sarah had a completely light green face, with fake blood coming from her mouth. Black eye shadow, and dark blue mascara, in contrast to the green also in her hair. It was a little backcombed and extensions, in many different colours, like pink, green and blue. Also wearing a red dress, underneath her black cloak.
'Wow, Abby, Connor, you look spectacular!'
'Thanks.' Connor threw Becker a box.
'What's in this?'
'Fireworks…put them under a road cone or something and honestly you have a fantastic explosion.'
Abby opened the door and gestured for them to leave. Boots thudded against the floor, and they checked what they had and set off down the street to the local shop.
Maybe they shouldn't be pulling a prank like this when they were civilised adults. . Sarah was the oldest at 28, followed by Connor at 26, Becker at 25 and Abby at 24. So, if they got in trouble….blame Sarah.
They went into CO-OP and stocked themselves with eggs. The shop keeper just stared at them, openly gaping and Connor cleared his throat loudly.
'Sorry….office party is it?' she directed this at Abby and Connor.
'Yeah, something like that'
'Taking your kids out?' she asked Becker and Sarah next.
'Kids? No, don't have any.'
'Really…isn't that a bit weird?'
Becker frowned at her, and she stared at him, raising her eyebrows at his appearance. They paid and left, stepping out onto the cold streets of London. Next they visited the chip shop and got more stares there, making them laugh at the expressions on the little kids faces as the adults got more and more into the festivities. London wasn't really equipped to handle all the people on the streets, and on a Saturday too. The people would make it easier for them to slip away, after the deed was done.
So. Christine Johnson.
She was trickier, living on the outskirts, so they regrouped and got into Becker's Hilux, to cruise round to the outer-city limits of Westminster. They blasted the music up, making sure they turned heads in the normally posh, quiet part of London. They pulled up about twenty minutes later due to the traffic and parked around the corner, pulling the fireworks from the boot, getting a cigarette lighter and finding a perfect spot. It was lit up well but they were prepared for this, Becker handing Connor the wire cutters from earlier, and making his way to the electricity trip box. He cut the red wire, plunging the entire street into the darkness of the night.
Christine had left her blue recycling bin out, In the middle of the road to be ambushed. The only thing was they had about ten minutes before the reserve power switched itself on, illuminating them. The eggs were abruptly thrown on her car, walls and door, leaving the slimy mess that would be seen pretty soon, so they placed the fireworks into the plastic bin and lit them, before absolutely pelting it back to the car.
There was a huge bang, a screech and sparks. They looked up to see the most beautiful sight of a huge bin, spiralling in the sky, falling straight onto Christine's lawn, still with fireworks bursting out. The curtains twitched, and they ducked behind the car.
'Well done Connor.' Abby congratulated him with a high-five on his homemade fireworks, that were now lighting up the dark sky, wheels of blue and red, crackling and fizzing out.
Connor and Abby wouldn't have said anything, but they were happier now than ever, they had friends of their own age and mind. Stephen and Cutter would have liked it, sure, but there was something that only someone young, with a childish set of mind that could get the real enjoyment from it. They didn't have friends outside work because of one simple reason- the official secrets act. They couldn't tell anyone what they were doing, so it was nice to be able to be with people you didn't have to hide most of your life from. Becker and Sarah were nice, friendly and they were good to have a laugh with. It was about friendship, because although they were best friends, they were the last of the original team. There from the beginning,. Through everything, the death and the lost. And they could get over that now, because they had someone to support them. The party now, would be the most amazing thing ever, seen as Christine would have no idea what happened.
A huge rattling bang, alerted them to the fact they probably should go and Sarah tugged on Becker's hand.
And he ran as fast as he could to the front of the lawn, taking a sticky piece of paper from his pocket and applying it to the window, before ducking, out of sight and running back over. The door swung open, illuminating the lawn with light, and a rather pissed Christine stood there, looking at her mangled bin.
'What was that?'
'A huge picture of Lester from the party with 'Meet me at the ARC tomorrow, hottie'
Connor rolled that over in his head. 'That's bloody brilliant.'
They slammed the doors to the cars shut and Sarah turned to him.
'The party then?'
'Yeah, Jenny planned it apparently, couldn't resist turning up to see all her old friends for just one night. She tries to forget about us but you just never can I suppose.'
'Should be good then , if Jenny had something to do with it, I mean if it was up to Lester, there would be a few sausage rolls and a balloon.'
They pulled off their cloaks, revealing what they had on underneath. Becker had a zombie costume on, with bits of white material hanging everywhere, which, made him look really creepy. Connor was wearing vampire attire (aka, a cape) over trousers and a black top, with rips in it, and the skin underneath painted red.
They set off, driving as fast as they could get away with in the 30mph zone, and after making sure Christine was not following them parked up in the busy car park, over the flyover and crossed the walked into the main entrance and were met by a sight they sure were not expecting to see.
The whole ARC had undergone a huge renovation, with decorations hanging on every available surface, walls, ceilings, tables, statues, lab doors you name it. A huge balloon in the main operations room was filled with lots of others, on the walls were cobwebs and spiders, skeletons and pumpkins, even gravestones. The music was loud and ringing, with bands like Paramore and Muse playing, the bass vibrating through their bones.
The floor had been covered in a sort of green moss like material, with plastic fixtures, crowds of people stood admiring the decorations, like people at a zoo. In the midst of it all stood Lester and Jenny, Lester looking quite horrified, Jenny looking pleased as anything. She caught their eye and came rushing over to greet them enthusiastically.
Jenny was wearing a white dress, which could easily pass for a wedding one that was ripped and stained with red paint like blood, again her face was cream white, with red haphazardly slashed across her face and under her eyes, she even had contacts in, they were a weird violet colour. She had a smile plastered across her face and she hugged them all, in turn.
'Connor, Abby! Sarah, Becker!, so good to see you! You. Look. Amazing! Who did your make-up?'
'Well, Sarah did Becker's and I did Connor's' Abby swung her head round to stare at the hordes of people flooding in through the doors. 'Ermm, how many people work here?'
'More than you think Abigail Sarah Maitland.' Jenny laughed
'How's it been going without me?'
'Oh you know, we had a knight and a Dracorex, my brother went through to the future, I um..' Abby trailed off.
'Yes I heard about you and Connor.'
How the hell, did she do that, Abby thought as she watched Connor and Becker talking to Anna, from reception over at the other side of the room.
'Whatever.' she hissed and Jenny smiled secretively.
They respectively had a few complementary drinks, socialised with the Special Forces team that Becker led, finding out that they were nice blokes. Hemple, Redfern and Weavers were in on the trick on Christine, and found it hilarious that they had the guts to get her back after what they did to them. They swapped stories, like in Sibir with the Russians, when Connor had been run over by a large dinosaur and broken his wrist, as the end of the world of the dinosaurs loomed on the other side of the anomaly, and they shut it in time. Or the time when Lester and Danny had gone to South Africa, and the rest of the team had to deal with a huge anomaly opening up in London, with Saunders against the team personally. They were all dressed up, the forces, in the same outfit- white faces and wigs on that made them look ghost like, with green sprayed in their hair.
Sarah checked the clock, it had just gone nine, they were early. Christine would be here any minute, and as they regrouped in the corner, the doors slammed open.
A.. only slightly pissed off looking Christine Johnson stormed into the room and everyone turned to stare as she pointed an accusing finger at Lester.
'You! Someone, and I have a fairly good idea who… put a firework in my bin ' she pointed at the group in the corner.
And they pinned this,' she presented the picture of Lester to himself 'to my window!'
They were really trying not to laugh, but people were starting to look at them as they stood near the table, heaving with silent laughter at the look on her face, and the picture of Lester had been one of when he got drunk one time and stripped off…to umm… his under garments, singing High School Musical on stage, at the previous Christmas party.
'This is not over Christine' Abby mimed Christine's voice a little too loudly.
'When people say that James, it usually is'
And that was the end, for Connor called out.
'Enjoy the display?'
And they ran, out of the main operations room, they split up, Connor and Abby running outside, and Sarah and Becker hiding in the labs.
Sarah and Becker.
They were lying in the air vent, Sarah on top of Becker, otherwise they wouldn't fit, he pushed the hair back from her face and shushed her again. Listening to every little sound that might be the wrath of Christine Johnson, the noise inside the lab indicated that she was looking for them. It was particularly small for a vent they thought, and the metal dug hard into Becker's back, causing him to wince in pain and Sarah to tell him to not be a baby and 'man-up' which had led to a whispered argument about his masculinity.
'Come on out, I know your there.' Christine's boots clicked on the floor.
Sarah looked at Becker desperately. 'What do we do?' she whispered
He looked at her, eyes wild and did the first thing to come into his head, and he kissed her.
She had just enough time to give a startled cry- and she would deny that sound to her dying day- before his lips settled on hers. Not that she was complaining or anything, but she kind of needed air, for things such as, oh that's it, breathing.
And he didn't stop kissing her either- a plus- but she was concerned that Christine would hear them, every small sound echoed around the vent.
Although she might possible have heard Sarah's phone.
It started into a loud ring, and her and Becker broke apart as she tried to think where it was.
'Turn it off! Turn it off!' he hissed.
'I can't!' she wailed
'Where is it?' his eyes were dark and had a hint of annoyance.
'In my pocket'
He reached round her and slipped his hands into her pocket of her jeans, pulling it out and handing it to her, she hurriedly tried to turn it off but instead pressed accept, and it echoed on loud speaker and fell out the vent, the tones of Abby and Connor filling the room.
Sarah? Becker? You there? Its your bestest mateys in the world!! You're missing it! Or has the Witch of the West got you?
Becker opened the vent, and Sarah crawled out, kneeing him in the face while she did so, and stood up to be confronted with Christine. Becker shimmied out and lurched up unsteadily.
'Crap.' he muttered
Christine leaned scarily over them as Sarah shrank back into Becker's frame, they searched for exits but the place was blocked off, they had no choice but to be trapped, with the full wrath of Christine.
'I could have you sacked you know, for what you did to my house. I suppose they were your fireworks I found in my wheelie bin?' she hissed menacingly.
Becker's eyes shifted to Sarah and she shrugged, she had nothing.
Thankfully, the door crept open and Lester poked his head round the door, a amused expression on his face.
'Christine, I do hope you are not terrorising my staff?'
She smiled falsely 'No, James wouldn't dream of it. I was just leaving' and with a glare at them both she walked out the room, her shoes clicking on the floor.
Sarah rounded on Becker, menacingly. 'What was that?'
'You snogged me?' she accused with eyebrows raised
'Last kiss for the condemned man, a little embarrassing seen as we haven't been killed. Its not like I fancy you or anything.' he blushed uncontrollably, and stammed, falling over his words.
'I was on top of you Becker, one piece of your anatomy doesn't lie.'
She patted him on the chest and walked out, leaving him standing there like an idiot.
Connor and Abby
Standing hand in hand, Abby and Connor watched the midnight, sky, they had gotten past Christine, and Becker and Sarah had gone home- together. Abby turned to him, her face illuminated only by moonlight and she sighed.
'What's wrong?' he asked her.
'I was just thinking- you get used to being alone, with Cutter, Stephen and Tom gone. Have you ever realised, that we have no other friends?'
'Im not good enough for you eh?' Connor joked and she looked at him a little worriedly.
'I was only-'
Jenny clapped him on the back, 'Your fireworks soon' and she walked off, leaving them alone.
People were swarming out the back of the ARC, into a small garden used rarely and only built for this purpose of utility. They hadn't realised how many people were actually in on the operations, then again, were they in on it, or did they not know about all the dinosaur chasing they did day-to-day? Connor briefly wondered what life would be like if everyone knew about the anomalies, if they could get real funding for the operations. But he knew that thinking that was dangerous territory and had led Stephen to his untimely death.
Instead he preferred to live in the moment, because knowing all the things hed seen, if you looked too far into the future, you would not like what you saw.
Abby's hand squeezed his and he looked down to see her eyebrows raised.
'Dreaming?' she questioned.
'Right and wrong.' this mirrored something Stephen had once said, and he mentally shook himself to clear his head of the memory.
A fireworks burst loudly into the air, and there were oohs of appreciation from the crowd, as red, blue and green merged in one spectacular display.
She really looked at him then, surveying the way he had grown up in the three years since their lives abruptly and without warning crashed into one. She said he could stay at the flat until he had got himself sorted. He stayed there THREE years, and counting- he could stay forever if he wanted. And she wouldn't change it for anything, in fact if there was one thing she could change; it would be that they had met faster.
'I don't know how often I say it Connor, but I really do love you, and I mean that.' The words were said deadly serious, and it left him with hope, and optimism.
Now it was his turn to look at her like she was crazy, and maybe drunk but he smiled a nervous one be it that, but it was there. And that gave her hope.
'I-I-Um..I-' He stammered, adverting his eyes to the floor, until she pulled his chin up so she could look at him.
'Just say it Connor.' she stared into his soft brown eyes, and watched as the resolve in them hardened. They were risking their friendship, and they knew it.
'When you were dangling off that cliff, all those months ago Abby, I don't regret what I said. I meant it. And id would do it again.' he blurted all this out in one go, and he just looked at her like she might slap him.
She grinned though, and thought her heart might just possibly explode.
'Back at you' and she grabbed hold of the lapels of his jacket, reached up and kissed him on the lips, and he wound his arms round her waist, so she didn't have to reach so far, and happily and willingly returned the gesture. When they did finally break away, she kept her arms round him and her head in his chest, and he leant his cheek on her hair.
"I really hope we can spend the rest of our lives like this." Connor said eventually, breaking the silence.
Abby chuckled and leant in to kiss him again, slowly and passionately.
'Im sure we can come to some sort of arrangement.' then she cocked her head.
'Yes?' he frowned, his eyebrows knitting.
'You have lipstick all over your face.'