Chap 10

Ahhh and we're almost to the end of it.

CoverGirl sat behind the driver's wheel and waited patiently while her Ranger laboriously climbed in the passenger side and settled into the seat. "I can't believe you ate all that. You're going to die."

He slide down in the seat a little and nodded, closing his eyes. "I am. I am gonna die. Gonna explode. Be messy."

She shook her head. "Suicide by pie. Only you, Beach... only you. We should enter you in pie-eating contests."

He held up a finger. "I'll go fer that! More pie! But the last two times I entered pie eatin' contests.. they disqualified me."

She cranked up and began working her way towards the interstate. "Why would they possibly disqualify you? That's crazy."

He tilted his chin down and belched. "Ahh... better. They disqualified me on accounta I didn't stop eatin' pie when the buzzer sounded. But.. it was danged good pie..." He twisted himself down another inch into the seat. "I really am gonna die."

"Well.. you shouldn't have eaten that much. That poor waitress.. you traumatized her." CoverGirl grinned remembering how the staff had been taking bets on how much more the Army Ranger could eat.

"Oh please!" Beach snorted loudly. "You and your danged punning was worse. Just because they showed you a apple cobbler in that square pan.. you didn't have to go saying 'look Beach, pie R squared!' like that."

She laughed. "You're just mad because I made you snort a cherry out of your nose."

"Well.. it burned. I still can't smell nothin' but cherry pie fillin' now." He tried to sound disgruntled but broke into a grin. "That was the best stop-over ever. I'm gonna stop there every time I come through here." He put a hand on his stomach and groaned. "I'm gonna die. You'll hit a bump and I'll explode."

"Poooor Beach. I'll drive carefully. I don't want to have to hose bits of Ranger out of the cab." She watched him lean his head back against the seat. "I hope you can walk by the time we get to the base. I'm not about to carry your over-stuffed bulk into the Pit."

He smiled although he didn't open his eyes. "What? You don't want me on yer back?" He suddenly looked horrified. "Oh wait.. I didn't mean it like that..."

She thought about acting offended about it, but he was in SUCH a good mood, she hated to break it. "Oh it's fine, Ranger man. I know you didn't mean it like that.. not that I might not WANT you to mean it like that..." She leered at him and watched him turn beet red. "Ha! Look at you getting all embarrassed!"

"I ain't embarrassed." He swallowed hard. "You uhh.. you'd like that.. would you...?"

Now it was her turn to look away. "Uhh.. well.." She nodded towards the side of the highway. "Look.. umm.. trees. Look at all those trees."

He dutifully peered out the windshield. "Yep. Green."

"Yeah. Lots of green trees."

The cab of the deuce was quiet for a while.

CoverGirl eased off the gas pedal and downshifted to take the off ramp. She glanced over at the sleeping Ranger a few times but he didn't move. Once she was on the smaller roadway, she reached to whack Beach in the shoulder several times until he was awake and got a hand up to fend her off. "Wakey wakey wakey! Come on! Wakey wakey!" She laughed as he scrambled to defend himself.

Looking startled and trying to blink himself into coherency, he pushed her arm away from him. "Dang it! Get offa me." He sat up and sniffed a couple times. "We almost to the base?" Looking around the truck, he checked the sparse traffic. "Everything okay?"

"Everything is fine. All in order. I just wanted to wake you up." She smiled as he cursed softly under his breath. "Aww.. come on, I just was lonely driving with you asleep. We're almost back to base.. last chance to bug you unmercifully."

"Oh when ya put it that way..." He gave her a look from under lowered eyebrows. ".. I'm goin' back to sleep.." He pretended to slouch down in the seat and got smacked a few more times. Her whacks were a lot more playful and a lot less painful though, so he didn't protest too much. "Alright alright! Gawd you're an abusive girlfriend."

She stopped and stared at him for a second. "Wayne.. you just called me your girlfriend." He looked away, hoping he wasn't about to get yelled at for presuming. "You're so sweet." He puffed out a relieved breath. "I'm glad I volunteered for this trip." She grinned widely. "It's been fun."

"Yeah.. you're mental, Kreiger. You know that, right?" He settled in and stretched a bit. "It ain't been a bad trip.. you're good company." She beamed happily and he added. "When you ain't attractin' muggers, playing pranks on me, stealin' my food or picking fights with me on accounta you're bored."

She mock scowled at him. "Well.. I think I'll take it as a compliment.. despite your surly nature and little sniping quips. At least I got to leer at my boyfriend in bed." He blushed on cue and she preened at her success. "Even if you do drive like a grandma."

"I drive just fine. Ain't no one but you complained about my drivin' any." He deliberately didn't look at her.

She waited and finally started to open her mouth with, "What about.."

He interrupted. "That DON'T count! I told Duke to hold on! Ain't my danged fault that he can't stay in a sand rail when it turns up on two wheels!" He grumped to himself. "Sides.. he only broke his danged wrist fallin' out! That don't even count!"

She raised an eyebrow at him but let it go. She was feeling overly generous towards him. "Anyway.." She flipped a blinker light on and turned to start down the long entrance road, passing the airfield and the hangers. "Almost back to the Pit."

He nodded and bent to get the box of gear put back together. "Yeah." He glanced at his watch. "We're back early.. be a couple hours until dinner even. I should be able to get all the paperwork turned in, get the truck unloaded and the stuff inventoried." Ducking his head slightly, he glanced over at her. "You'll eat dinner with me, right?"

CoverGirl nodded, giving him a smile. "Of course.. but are you sure you're going to be able to eat?"

"I can always eat." He lifted upwards to glare down at the greenshirt on gate guard duty when she pulled up. "DID YOU JUST WAVE THIS TRUCK THROUGH WITHOUT CHECKIN' IT!" The guard jumped and looked up at him. "You do NOT pass a vehicle through this danged gate without checkin' it!"

"But but..." The greenie stuttered a moment. "But it's Corporal CoverGirl driving and.. I thought.."

BeachHead glowered at him darkly. "You THOUGHT what? You thought it was fine to disregard protocol on accounta Barbiedoll here is drivin'?"

Looking up at the ex-model and making the poor decision to try for masculine points, the greenie gave just a hint of a smirk. "Well.. yes Sergeant major."

CoverGirl leaned back in the driver's seat and plugged her right ear with a finger as Beach lunged to the window over her lap. "Easy Beach.."

He ignored her. "DON'T YA MAKE ME GET OUTA THIS DANGED TRUCK AND FIX YER DANGED PRIORITIES BOY! I swear ta Gawd I WILL break ya myself if'n ya wanna make me!"

The greenie shook his head. "No Sergeant major. Checking the vehicle now." He ran the most thorough check possible and then came back around to her door. "You're clear." A quick wave and the gate rolled open.

She nodded to him. "Thank you." Beach leaned over and she shoved him back on his side. "Beach says thank you too." There was a low growl which she ignored. Taking the rumbling truck into the base and threading it through to the motorpool, she pulled it into a deserted garage section and shut the engine down. "Well.. we're back." She looked at the Ranger who made no move to open his door.

He glanced over at her. "Yeah." Suddenly he tugged off his mask and slid across the seat closer to her, reaching to take her face carefully in hand. Even though he moved slow enough for her to pull away, it was still one of the most overt moves he'd ever put on her and for a few seconds, CoverGirl was too surprised to respond. Then her hands came up to twist around behind his head, pulling him in and kissing him deeply.

They broke the kiss to breathe and he sighed. "Yeah.. time to go... uh.. get to unloadin' the truck..."

She smiled as he made no move to leave the cab. "Yeah.. we should get right on that.." Another kiss followed her words, and she scooted closer to the very warm, very male body next to hers. "In just one minute... " Her slender form pressed up against him and he reached to tug her half into his lap.

His voice was soft.. "Maybe... maybe a few minutes... ain't much to unload no how.." His hands drifted down to her back, pulling her in so he could trail his lips along her jaw to her ear and kiss the tender skin under it. Her eyes fluttered slightly and she sighed softly.

"Sergeant major?" The eager young voice came from entirely too nearby and CoverGirl cursed inventively in strangled mutters.

Beach tilted his forehead into hers and sighed heavily. "Yeah.. we're back to the Pit." He kissed her elegant cheekbone very gently. His hands stopped roaming and came to a rest on her shoulders.

She slumped just a little bit. "Yeah.. I noticed. Just how attached are you to that greenshirt? If say.. he just disappeared.. or.. well.. if there were only scattered parts of him found?"

He chuckled softly at her and stole one last quick kiss. "That'd be a lotta paperwork, Barbiedoll. Plus Hawk gets mad as a wet hen if Joes kill any of their teammates. Just gets right under his skin. No one wants to make Hawk mad. It's almost a cardinal rule, you could say."

"Sergeant major?" Williams sounded closer to the truck although it was parked up on the higher section and they were mostly hidden from view. He certainly didn't sound like someone about to give up and leave the motorpool though.

Beach looked at the ceiling of the truck briefly then dragged his balaclava back onto his head. "Yes Williams!"

The eager voice sounded so happy, Beach just knew he'd feel a slight amount of guilt in about five minutes when he got done kicking him. "You're back, Sergeant major!"

"Yessss... Williams. Very freakin' observant." Beach kicked his door open and gave CoverGirl one last apologetic glance. She shrugged at him and smiled. He dropped out onto his feet on the motorpool floor. "Williams! Since you're so danged eager to come bother me.. you can do the danged maintenance on this deuce. The driver's door sticks.. and it needs a new tire on the right front.. and then you can...."

CoverGirl listened to the deep accent giving Private Williams a string of duties to perform, hearing him branch into ordering the truck unloaded and the proper forms to be located and brought in to him as other greenshirts and motorpool attendants appeared as well. Taking a deep breath, she twisted in the driver's seat to boot the door open.

"Hey! Sergeant Hardass! You gonna let me fall out on my head or you gonna come give me a hand down out of this stupid deuce? I gotta pee!"

End Story

Yes, that's the end of it. No more! I hope it was as fun for you to ride along as it was for me to write it! As always, thank YOU for reading and feel free to review or PM me with comments or questions!