So this week's Castle (guest-starring Currie Graham) reminded me that I'd always intended to do a post-ep to the Mashburn episode (ep. 2.13) as a part of my established Jane/Lisbon AU-verse. This belongs in the series with Mutual Liberation, To hold but maybe not to keep, and In all Fairness. I don't know that you need to read any of the others, but I certainly won't dissuade you and it probably wouldn't hurt. If you haven't read them all you need to know if that Jane and Lisbon are in a relationship (of sorts), started sometime after the season 1 finale (but it's not exactly traditional).

Also, this one is going to be considerably lighter in tone than the rest of the series, because even the most angsty of series needs moments of levity right? Also, I wanted to see if I could actually write them established minus all the angst.

As always, I own nothing. And I hope you enjoy.


Overnight Abandon


Theresa Lisbon stood outside waiting for Jane to arrive. He'd asked her to meet him there for god knows what reason. At least they'd already closed their case so she figured she could be fairly certain that whatever insanity was brewing in the recesses of her consultant's mind, it probably wasn't professionally based.

Which just left the personal.

And while that did significantly decrease the probability that she'd end up having to bail Jane out of jail, or talk someone out of a lawsuit against either the CBI, her team, or Jane personally, she wasn't sure it would necessarily be simpler. At least when they were operating in the professional realm there were general guidelines, rules, to follow. Sure Jane was insane, but at least she generally knew what way was up. The personal could be a little more topsy-turvy.

Yes, she enjoyed his company; she wouldn't deny that. And whatever they were doing was, it had definite benefits. Lisbon grinned to herself; she didn't doubt that she knew she mattered to him on some level. But they'd also both admitted that the odds were almost 100% that whatever they were doing would end in disaster for at least one if not both of them. Heck, sometimes she thought the only reason either of them were in it at all was that they were both so desperate for some kind of human connection, they were willing to take what would have otherwise been an insane risk

After all, Jane'd basically tarred them with the same brush earlier in the week when he'd accused her of being jealous of Rigsby and Van Pelt's attempt to have some sort of normal life. Apparently her consultant figured both she and he were too far gone to have anything approaching a normal relationship. She wasn't sure whether she should be insulted, comforted, annoyed, or just plain depressed by the idea.

Lisbon took a deep breath. She didn't want to think about that today. It was a beautiful day. The case was closed, and notwithstanding the victim's depressed and grieving rocker boyfriend's near breakdown, the case had been almost fun. After all, it's not every case that features a multimillionaire who finds being a murder suspect entertaining. And Lisbon'd admit that watching Jane figuratively dance around Walter Mashburn had been an interesting diversion. But now that the case was done she wanted to forget about depressed musicians and the ticking time bomb that was Rigsby and Van Pelt's relationship; what she really wanted was to regain that sense of fun.

In the right mood Jane could be good at that. Now where was he? She scanned the street but couldn't see Jane's car anywhere. Which was surprising because it was distinctive enough that you could see it coming and, for all his flaws, Jane wasn't usually late.

The mystery was solved when he pulled up in a car that was significantly flashier than his usual. He'd somehow convinced Mashburn to loan it to him. Alternatively, Mashburn had been so enamoured with Jane by the end of the case that it was entirely possible the millionaire had suggested the loan of the car himself.

Still, when Jane told her to hop in she hesitated. Jumping into flashy luxury cars with dangerous men behind the wheel was hardly her style. She let her eyes drift over the car. It was nice, and she'd be lying if she said that Jane didn't look good in it, very good. Oh the hell with it. She'd wanted fun hadn't she? Before she could talk herself out of it Lisbon hopped into the passenger seat with a grin. She wasn't surprised when Jane ignored her request to stick to the speed limit, but as she let out an undignified shriek as he wheeled out of the parking lot she admitted that she also wasn't disappointed.

It really was a gorgeous day after all.

She wondered where he was taking her to dinner.


As soon as Mash'd offered to lend him the car, Jane'd thought of her immediately. He'd meant it when he'd said she could use a bit of frivolity in her life. Everything was always so serious with his Lisbon. If anyone deserved to be pampered a little bit it was her. Mind, you he hadn't really been all that upset when she'd turned Mashburn down. Jane admitted that while he may have been sleeping with her, he really didn't have any true claim on her. They were both free to do as they chose. And he'd admitted to himself a long time ago that Lisbon deserved more than he could give her right now. If she found it he had no right to stand in her way.

But that didn't mean he had to like it.

Interesting as Walter Mashburn was, Jane wasn't definitely didn't like the idea of the man trying to seduce his Lisbon. The man might be arrogant and possibly slightly psychopathic, but he was also charming. Not that Lisbon had been buying what he'd been selling, but that wasn't been the point. Mashburn had his own jet. Even to someone as practical and self-sufficient as Lisbon the idea of jetting off to Paris at a moment's notice was probably an intriguing one. And like Jane'd said, she deserved a bit of empty glamour to distract her.

So when Mash offered to loan him the awesome car he was currently driving, Jane'd decided to ask her to dinner. If Lisbon wouldn't take Walter Mashburn up on his offer of a night of luxury then it was up to Patrick Jane to supply it. He was worried about her. She'd been sad lately, for obvious reasons. So he'd made a reservation for two at one of his favourite restaurants with every intention of asking her to dinner, like they were a regular couple. Because even though their relationship was far from normal, he wanted to pretend that it was, at least for the night. They both deserved one meal without the problems of their lives weighing down on them. He wanted to ignore the ghosts of his family, and hers, not to mention Sam Bosco, and the looming spectre of Red John himself. At least for the evening.

Because despite outward appearances, Masburn was right; she was broken. And yeah, it was attractive as hell, but it was also terrifying when you considered what she did for a living. Just how much more would she be able to break before the Lisbon he knew was lost?

If an evening at one of California's best restaurants helped keep her together then the expense be damned. When they'd started this thing Jane'd vowed to try and be there for her, and to be a place where she could feel. But he was beginning to wonder if maybe he was missing the point. Maybe he needed to be a place where she could relax, just for a little while, like she was for him.

He grinned as he pulled up behind her. She hadn't seen him coming in his borrowed ride. Then he watched in amusement at her momentary hesitation before she jumped in beside him. He'd seen the look in her eyes as she sized up the car. She'd desperately wanted to jump in the passenger seat from almost the first minute, maybe even more than he wanted her to.

Still, he laughed pretty hard when she yelled at him to slow down. After she let out the most feminine squeal he'd ever heard from the hardened CBI agent.

Yeah, this was gonna be fun.


"So, ya gonna tell me where we're going?" Lisbon asked him.

"Now where's the fun in that?" Jane wondered. "Just relax Lisbon enjoy the ride."

"I was just asking," she told him defensively.

"And your curiosity will be satisfied soon enough," Jane told her. He glanced over at her quickly, "I'm not going to take you to some dive bar on the other side of town Lisbon. I told you, it's a nice place."

"So, was Mashburn's offer to loan our evening's transportation his idea, or did you put it in his head," Lisbon asked, deciding to change the subject.

"Oh no, it was all his idea," Jane replied. "Like I said, he was so pleased about the new experience he wanted to show his gratitude. Course once I got the car I thought of you."

"A little empty glamour?" she asked with a grin.

He shrugged, "Something like that. I wanted to take you out to dinner."

"We don't usually do that," she said softly. And it was true. They'd never been out on anything even resembling a date. They weren't a couple. Not like that.

Jane shrugged as he pulled into the restaurant's parking lot, "Yeah, but I felt like it." He got out of the car and walked over to open her door for her, "Come on Lisbon; don't analyze it. Let's shake things up. Live a little," he told her with another grin as he held a hand out to her.

Again, she hesitated slightly before taking it. But when she did she sent him a smile in return. "Fine, but if something happens I'm not bailing you out of jail this time," she told him.

"Fair enough," he said. He held the door for her before following her in himself. "Hello," he greeted the hostess with a smile. "Patrick Jane, I have a reservation for two."

The hostess double-checked her book before grabbing a pair of menus, "Ah yes, Mr. Jane. You're on the terrace. If you'll follow me, I'll show you to your table."

Lisbon shot him a suspicious look, which he ignored, as they followed their waitress across the restaurant. "Your server will be right with you," the woman told them once they were seated. "Enjoy your meal."

"Thank you," Jane told her with a smile.

"Lisbon opened her menu as she glanced around the room. "This wasn't exactly what I was expecting," she admitted.

Jane grinned. "Oh? How so?"

She shrugged, "It's understated. Don't get me wrong, it's lovely. But when you said we were going out to dinner I was expecting something a little, I don't know, flashier. "

He'd be lying if the thought hadn't crossed his mind. But he'd known it wasn't the way to go with her. "But you've never liked ostentation," he explained. "If you did, you'd have accepted Mashburn's dinner invitation. Besides, anything fancier and we'd have been underdressed, which would have made you uncomfortable. And that's the last thing I wanted."

Lisbon felt her lips curving up into a smile. Jane was really oddly sweet sometimes. "What happened to not seducing me over a meal?" she asked him playfully.

Jane smirked pleased, "Who said anything about seducing you?"

"I suppose I just assumed," she said as she played with her water glass.

"Tsk, tsk." Jane told her. "Assumptions my dear? I expected better from a trained investigator."

"Well, maybe I was projecting then," she admitted with a shrug, pleased when his eyes widened in mild surprise. "If you don't want to though..."

"I never said that," Jane interrupted smoothly. When she raised an eyebrow he continued, "Although it was never my main goal I certainly wouldn't be upset..." he trailed off. "As it happens though, at the moment I just want to enjoy a nice meal with you."

Lisbon felt the warmth coiling in her abdomen. "Like normal people," she whispered.

"Exactly," he told her with a smile as he met her eyes. Really, so far this evening was going quite well. At least in his opinion.

Lisbon broke the silence first, "So what's good here?" she asked.

"Everything," he told her.

"Really?" she asked sceptically.

"Absolutely," Jane confirmed with a nod. "Would I lie to you?"

She shot him a look.

"Alright, maybe I would," Jane admitted. "But this time I'm not."

"We'll see about that," Lisbon muttered as she flipped through her menu.

"Oh, you're not going to try and find something you won't like just to prove me wrong are you?" Jane asked. When she continued flipping through her menu without looking at him, he shook his head in exasperation. "Lisbon that's just cutting off your nose to spite your face."

"Not if what you say is true and everything really is good," she pointed out.

"Which it is," he told her. "But we both know you'll enjoy some things more than others. You shouldn't let your constant need for control get in the way of a good meal."

Lisbon sat back in her chair and crossed her arms. "Alright, if you know me so well then you tell me. What will I enjoy?" she asked him.

Jane sent her his patented all-knowing grin, closed his menu and leaned back in his own chair, silently observing her.

Before Lisbon could speak, the waitress arrived and introduced herself. After filling their water glasses and informing them of the specials she asked if they wanted to order drinks.

"We'll start with some of your house red," Jane told her with a smile. "But I think we're also ready to order as well. I'll have the soup of the day followed by the peppercorn, medium-rare. My friend will have the house salad, dressing on the side if it's not too much trouble and that sinful sounding pasta special with the cream sauce. Oh and don't skimp on the cheese"

After checking briefly with Lisbon, who waved the woman off in amusement, the waitress left them. Jane turned back to his dinner companion. "So?"

"Alright," Lisbon said with a shake of her head. "Alright, you got me," she told him good-humouredly. "So are you planning on predicting what I'm going to do for the rest of the evening?"

"Just when you're being particularly stubborn," Jane replied. "Personally, I think you should just relax and enjoy yourself."

Lisbon leaned forward, placing her elbows on the table conspiratorially, "And what makes you think I'm not," she asked with a grin.

Jane leaned towards her himself, tucking a piece of hair behind her ear absently, "My apologies dear," he murmured, trailing a finger along her jaw line.

Lisbon glanced briefly at the view before meeting his eyes again, "So, what's your favourite colour?" she asked suddenly.

Jane's forehead creased in confusion, "Hm?" he asked, amused.

She shrugged semi-self-consciously, "You said you wanted a normal evening," she reasoned. "I figured that included small talk."

"So you asked my favourite colour?"

"First thing that came to mind," she admitted. "Though I suppose we could discuss the weather if you'd prefer."

"No, no, favourite colour's fine," he replied, pleased at the chance to have a bit of silly conversation with her. He paused, considering. "Green I suppose. I've always liked it. Couldn't tell you why. It's such a nice solid colour."

Lisbon smiled as she took a drink of her water.

"I suppose, this is the part of the conversation where I ask you your favourite colour," Jane remarked.

"But you've never been one for tradition have you?" Lisbon asked. "Go ahead and guess," she told him indulgently. "I know you're dying to."

"Another challenge?" he asked playfully. "Don't you trust me after my masterful deduction about what you wanted to order? Very well." And giving an exaggerated shrug, Jane proceeded to make a show of examining her to deduce her colour preferences, much to Lisbon's amusement. Placing a finger to his temple and closing his eyes, Jane spoke, "It's coming to me. Yes, it's... canary yellow," he told her as he opened his eyes. Lisbon's smile widened. "No?" he asked. "Ah well," he told her with another shrug. "It probably would have taken me a while to get to emerald green that way anyways."

Lisbon's triumphant smile turned into a sigh, "Okay, very clever," she told him, rolling her eyes when his grin widened. "So I guess that means we have the same favourite colour."

"If this was a traditional date," Jane couldn't help pointing out, "this would be the part of the evening where we both exclaimed over finding that we have something in common."

"We have something in common regardless," Lisbon told him. "If this was a traditional date we'd be placing far more importance on the fact."


There was a brief pause in the conversation before Jane broke it, "So, what's your favourite movie?" he asked with a smile.


Their meals arrived almost immediately after that, but it didn't disrupt the conversation. For the most part, the topics were light, favourite movies, books, hobbies. Nothing that could be connected to either of their less than perfect adolescent years or any of the later tragedies and stressors in their lives. For one evening at least, they weren't Patrick Jane, a man who'd already had his heart ripped out of his chest, and Teresa Lisbon, a CBI agent who refused to falter no matter how many times life blindsided her. They were just Jane and Lisbon, Patrick and Teresa, a man and a woman out for a meal.

And as they'd both hoped, it had been fun.

Sure, Jane'd teased his companion for most of the evening; she was far too adorable when she was flustered. And Lisbon'd responded by mocking him every chance she got. But he didn't mind that. Actually, he kinda liked it. At least she wasn't boring. And he was becoming fond of the way her lip curled slightly whenever she scored a hit.

Besides, in his opinion her eyes twinkling with fun across the table from him was a good look on her.

"So that was one hell of a case huh?" Lisbon remarked, as she pushed the last few bites of her pasta around her plate.

Jane was impressed they'd gotten this far without mentioning work. "I guess it was a little out of the ordinary, even for us," he agreed. "Though the motive was as old as time," he added as an afterthought. For all that the circumstances surrounding the murder had definitely been interesting, a women murdered to cover up a jealous plot was far from groundbreaking.

"Still, how many cases feature one of California's richest men letting you drive his car off a cliff?" Lisbon asked.

Jane grinned, remembering that. He was still mildly disappointed she hadn't been there to see it herself. Cho just wasn't as fun to bend the rules around. For one, the taciturn agent rarely cared. And besides, Jane admitted that he may have wanted to show off for her, just a little. "Ah yes, good old Mash," Jane replied. "I'll admit he had his moments."

Lisbon almost snorted, "His moments? Jane, you were almost enamoured of the man," she told him. "I thought the two of you were going to start trading phone numbers and making dates to do other foolish things in a variety of motorized vehicles. It looked to me like it was the beginning of a beautiful friendship."

"I admit, I was intrigued by him," Jane replied calmly. "But for all his good points, Mash does have slightly psychopathic tendencies, which are a bit worrying."

Lisbon decided to ignore the irony of that statement, "Still, he does have nice cars to make up for that," she told Jane.

"Well, if you like them, I'm sure Mash'd be more than happy to show them to you up close," Jane replied. "For all your talk about my potentially epic friendship with our friend Walter, I'm not the one he'd prefer to have at his side."

"Oh please," Lisbon replied. "Walter Mashburn doesn't actually care about me one way or the other. I struck his fancy briefly. And if I hadn't turned him down I doubt I'd have crossed his mind again."

Jane frowned slightly, "Don't sell yourself short m'dear." He told her. "You're a lovely woman, and I can assure you Mash's interest was genuine. Although yes, I admit, it probably wouldn't have been permanent. But the man was definitely attracted to you."

"To what my, what was it? Oh yeah, my damaged intensity?" Lisbon asked with a smile.

To her surprise Jane didn't smile back. "Yes," he told her, running a finger over her wrist. "You're an intriguing woman Teresa Lisbon. I certainly can't fault Mashburn for his taste, though I can't say I'm all that upset that you turned him down."

Lisbon glanced at him surprised. "You were the one who said it would be good for me!" she exclaimed. And his apparent approval had stung, just the littlest bit.

"Nothing like encouraging you to have dinner with another man to allay suspicions is there?" Jane asked with a grin.

Lisbon laughed. "Yeah, thanks for that."

"No problem," he replied easily.

"So when I turned down his offer for a night on the town you decided to take his place?" Lisbon asked curiously. "To provide some empty glamour?" she asked.

"Like I said, I thought it would be good for you," Jane told her. "And you deserve it. You deserve a good time."

"Even if I'd gotten it from someone as irritating as Mash?" Lisbon couldn't resist asking.

Jane shrugged, "I knew you wouldn't accept. Not your style. And like I said, I was hardly crushed when you turned him down. He'd have treated you like a toy Lisbon, a new experience for him to collect. And you are not a toy." Then he deliberately lightened his tone, "Besides, I rather like being the arrogant jackass in your life."

Lisbon felt a shiver run up her spine. Was this... was this Jane being possessive? She knew the idea ought to have worried her, but she found she rather liked it. To start, it was flattering as hell. "Staking your claim are you Jane?" she asked.

He smiled, even as his heart gave an odd little thud. Was that what he was doing? He supposed he was. He wasn't sure how he felt about that. "And if I am?" he asked.

Lisbon grinned, "Well, I guess it's a good thing for you that I only have enough patience for one arrogant jackass in my life. And I already have to put up with you at work."

"Your praise is overwhelming," Jane replied. But he smiled as he said it. It was far more than he'd been expecting anyways.

"Fine, thank you for a lovely evening Jane," she told him.

"You're welcome Lisbon. But last time I checked the night wasn't quite over yet," he told her. "Dessert?"

Across the table her grin turned sinful as she left the innuendo unsaid.

"Watch it woman," he practically growled at her. "You've already put ideas in my head with all your talk of staking claims, and if you keep that up you'll miss out on the famous chocolate cake."

He watched as her expression turned from almost predatory to one of far more innocent anticipation. "Ah, I've got your interest now have I?" he asked her.

"I suppose what I had in mind can wait," she told him with a demure smile.

"Patience is a virtue," Jane confirmed, as he caught the waitress' attention. As for his Lisbon, well, he had a couple of ideas of his own when he finally got her alone.


About an hour later the pair left the restaurant. Lisbon was quite pleased with her evening. Jane'd been in rare form. He'd been as charming and entertaining as he knew how, but he hadn't been out to embarrass her or to make her uncomfortable. There'd been no prying into her life, no unbelievably awkward attempts to try and get her to talk about the things that were bothering her. None of that. He'd just been... nice.

She knew it couldn't last, but as she felt Jane put his hand on the small of her back to lead her out the door, she admitted to herself that it'd been a lovely little escape from reality. As Jane steered her towards the parking lot she turned to thank him again, when she felt him suddenly duck her into the shadows around the corner of the building.

Almost before she knew what was happening Lisbon felt her back up against the wall and Jane's hands in her hair while he kissed her languidly. She wrapped her arms around his neck and with a soft groan and kissed him back. As he deepened the kiss she pulled him closer. For all his talk about not intending to seduce her, she'd known exactly where the evening was headed the second he pulled up in that ridiculous car.

Although, as she felt him slide one of his legs between hers while one of his hands slid down to trace patterns on her hip, she admitted that she really didn't mind.

A few minutes later Jane pulled away from her. He hadn't actually intended to do that. He hadn't been lying when he'd told her that seduction hadn't been his primary object that evening (though he'd always figured they'd get there eventually). But the consultant admitted that he'd seriously underestimated how irresistible a flirtatious Teresa Lisbon sitting across the table and sparring with him for the better part of three hours would be.

He smiled softly at her as they both caught their breath. "I hope you had a good time," he told her.

When he saw her answering grin, he resisted the urge to roll his eyes, instead settling on another quick kiss. "You're incorrigible," he told her.

She snickered, "That's rich coming from you," she replied as she started towards the car.

He just shrugged, "Maybe. But I'm learning there's far more mischief in you than you'd like people to believe Teresa Lisbon."

She just sent him another smile as they approached their borrowed ride. Suddenly she turned. "Thank you for a lovely dinner Jane." She told him.

"My pleasure," he replied. "Like I said, you deserve to relax a little, let your hair down."

"You really want me to feel good Jane? To let go?" she asked as she sidled up to him.

"I think you should give it a try Lisbon, it might be good for you," he told her candidly, curious as to where she was going with this.

"I see," she told him with an enigmatic smile. "And this sudden concern for my mental state has nothing to do with the fact that you want to be the one to help unwind after a hard day at the CBI?"

"This isn't about me," he insisted as he let her back him up against the car.

"Isn't it?" she asked, tilting her head to the side. "Not even a little Patrick?" she asked. "Are you telling me that a part of you doesn't like the idea of helping me let loose? Of seeing me embrace my wilder side? Living a little?" She moved closer, grinning when he swallowed. "Are you honestly going to stand there and try and convince me that watching the very buttoned-down Agent Lisbon let her hair down and unbutton the top buttons of her blouse doesn't intrigue you?" She placed her hands on his shoulders and slowly slid them down his chest, her voice suddenly husky. "Are you saying that you wouldn't want to help me with that for more personal reasons Patrick?"

Jane grinned as her hands slid lower. This evening really was going far better than he'd ever anticipated. "Of course I'd help you Teresa," he told her, his voice as intentionally seductive as hers had been. "Why don't you let me take you back to your place, then, after I return the car, you can show me exactly what you have in mind?"

Lisbon's expression turned almost shy. "Are you sure you're willing to go along with it? It's just, it's something I've always wanted to do."

Jane's mind reeled at the possibilities. What could she possibly be talking about? Then as he looked down at her and saw her biting her lip he realized he didn't care. Whatever it is, it was fine with him. As long as she kept smiling at him like that. He sent her his most devilish grin in return. "Teresa, I promise to help you as much as possible to discover your inner daredevil," he told her. "I'm sure we'll both enjoy it."

Lisbon's smile widened and he felt her hand in his pocket. "Good," she told him. "You can start by letting me drive," she told him as she held up the keys in front of his face for just a second. Before he could grab them back she'd managed to evade his grasp, skipping around to the driver's side of the car and leaning against the door.

Jane turned to face her, still a little shocked. "What?"

"Drive, Jane," she repeated slowly, a huge smile still on her face. "You know, when you put the keys in the ignition, turn the car on and steer towards wherever you happen to be going."

Jane paused, she wanted to drive? But... but... he was driving! Mashburn had given the car to him for the evening. And he liked the idea of driving her around while she squealed from the passenger seat about how fast he was going. Besides, when would he ever get a chance to drive a car like this one again? On the other hand, she did look pretty happy with herself. "You want to drive?" he asked a second time, enunciating each word slowly as he tried the idea on for size.

"Yup," she confirmed. "After all, you boys were making such a fuss over these things all week, I thought I'd give it a try. And isn't all the power supposed to be exciting? Come on Jane. Tell me you don't like the idea of me driving a multimillionaire's car, zooming around California, with the top down?"

He admitted when she put it like that the idea was starting to sound more and more appealing. Still, he felt like there was a principle here that could not be ignored. "But..." Jane started

Lisbon leaned over the driver's seat conspiratorially, as if confessing a secret. "I might even exceed the speed limit a little," she told him in a stage whisper.

Jane met her dancing eyes. She was so obviously pleased with herself. He'd never stood a chance. "Fine, you can drive it back to pick up your car, but I get to drive it back to Mashburn's" he told her.

She beamed at him, as she jumped in the driver's side. "Okay," she told him. "I assumed you had to pick up your own car anyway."

"Yup, Mash's holding the Citroen as collateral," Jane admitted.

"Thing's probably worth about as much as the rims on this baby," Lisbon muttered.

"Not in my heart," Jane told her.

"Face it Jane, your car's one good pothole away from falling apart," she told him.

"Ouch. A fatal shot. My car has character."

"Think it has enough character to make it back to my place for a nightcap? Or have I wounded both of you too deeply," Lisbon asked.

Jane pretended to consider her request. "I suppose we could be persuaded," he admitted.


"Well, we could see if you could break loose, get into more trouble than just a speeding violation," Jane told her as he raised his eyebrows.

"Why do you think I want you to come back to my place?" Lisbon asked as she started the car. Grinning gleefully when the engine roared. "This is awesome!" she exclaimed. "Buckle up!"

Jane grinned and did as he was told. He looked at the expression on her face. If he'd known driving a fast car would do this to her he'd have never even suggested that she let Mash take her out. He was normally reasonably free from petty jealousies, but when it came to a happy Teresa Lisbon the thought of another man making her smile like she was made him have to consciously stop himself from balling his hands into fists. Jane supposed the only way to ease his momentary anxiety was to let her take him back to her place and stake her claim as she was clearly planning.

Yup. His life was tough.

When Lisbon laughed again as she accelerated out of the parking lot, Jane moved from passive enjoyment to mentally planning other ways of giving Mash novel experiences. In his mind the equation was simple: Novel experience for apathetic millionaire = Temporary loan of car, Temporary loan of car = Greater chance of Lisbon looking like she did. And Jane thought he'd enjoy more of this new, happy-go-lucky-Lisbon.

When she turned to him and grinned Jane couldn't even bring himself to regret that he wasn't driving. He'd wanted to give her a relaxing evening free from the typical restraints of her life, even if it was just for one night. As he watched the speedometer creep up out of the corner of his eye he realized he'd more than met his goal.


The end

A/N: Well personally, I think that went reasonably well.