Of the three stories I wrote for the Summer Secret Santa on jello forever, this was my favourite so i thought i'd share it with you!
Pairing: Duh. Anyone who has read any of my fics knows my heart belongs to Jisbon!
Prompt: Jisbon undercover.
"Come on, just tell me."
"No Jane. It's none of your concern."
"It is. I'm making it my concern."
"No you are not."
There was once a time when such bickering would've turned heads in the CBI building. Ears would prick up hopefully at the raised voices, hoping to get some titbit of gossip that could be pulled out over coffee in the break room. Those days were long over. The sound of bickering was as familiar to the staff as the humming of the traffic in the street below, mere background noise.
Sometimes the odd person glanced up as two people strode past them, so deeply engrossed in their conversation that they didn't seem to realize how loud they were being. Once you got over the thinly veiled hostility they seemed to harbour for one another, it was easy to appreciate what a well-matched pair they were. She, petite, green-eyed, raven-haired. He, blond, wearing a custom-made suit and sporting a dazzling smile. They looked good together, most people thought. Now if only they could be as mentally compatible as they were physically.
They disagreed on nearly everything, and what they didn't disagree about; they fought about, sometimes arguing until they had shouted themselves hoarse. And still none of their colleagues got excited.
"Why are you being so defensive about this?" he asked her. "As your friend I have the right to be concerned for your welfare."
"You're my friend now? When did I start palling around with the thorn in my side?"
"Good call, Lisbon. Clean, but still very painful. Nice."
"Don't patronize me!"
Special Agent Virgil Minelli rolled his eyes as he heard the voices of his best agent and her whack-job consultant. The amazing thing was that he could hear the two of them going at it through the solid elevator door as if they were standing right next to him. He sighed. Today he had been doing battle with a rather nasty migraine and this was just what he needed, a trip into the war zone. What was worse, he was bringing news he was sure Agent Lisbon was not going to like and found himself praying that she didn't shoot the messenger. The doors opened, and it was like somebody had suddenly turned up the volume.
"I'm just looking out for you," Jane said, soothingly.
"By prying in to MY personal life, MY being the operative word here. Get this through your thick head. It is none of your business."
"Nonsense. Your business is my business."
"Oh, sometimes I just want to rip your head off!" she snarled at him.
"That would be ill-advised my dear. If you did that, one of these nice state agents around the place would have to arrest you, and we wouldn't want that."
"I'd bet you fifty bucks that the majority of them would want to come over here and help."
Minelli approached the two of them, who were still so wrapped up in their own little world they didn't even notice him approach. When he was standing beside them, he waited a few beats but they still paid him no mind as they discussed the finer points of ripping Jane's head off. He cleared his throat, loudly.
Lisbon broke off from a detailed analysis of exactly how she would dispose of Jane's body after she was finished with him and turned to Minelli in surprise.
"Oh hey, boss. When did you get here?"
Minelli refrained from rolling his eyes.
"He's here to arrest you for uttering threats against a state official," Jane goaded her, trying to draw her back into an argument. Minelli watched her try to keep from snapping back at him, but he knew Lisbon was the kind of person who always liked to have the last word, and nobody knew better than Jane how exactly to get under her skin. Sure enough, the bait was just too tempting.
"A state official? I hope you don't mean yourself."
"Of course I do. I work for a state department of justice and I am very valuable to its processes. Ergo, state official."
"The only way you would be valuable to this department is if someone put a million-dollar price on your head. I can just see it now. 'Wanted: Dead or Alive. Patrick Jane. Can be recognized by three-piece suits and overall air of smugness, which makes him think he is superior to everybody.'"
"All right, that's enough!" Minelli cut in; tired of witnessing a dispute that would be better suited to a pair of kindergartners in a playground then a pair of civil servants in a DOJ office building. "Can we adjourn to your office, Agent Lisbon? I have something I need to discuss with you."
"Sure, boss. Is it a new case?"
"Something like that. And it concerns both of you, so Jane you'd better come too."
"Sounds intriguing," said Jane. "I'm in."
Lisbon led the way to her office and offered Minelli the seat behind her desk. She took one of the opposite chairs while Jane preferred to stretch himself out on the couch with him arms behind his head
"So what's this new case?" asked Lisbon at once. Jane thought that it simply wasn't right to look so eager at the thought of more work. The team were stretching themselves thin already with five open cases, the last thing they needed was another one.
"It's not a case exactly," Minelli hedged. "More of a project."
"Well whatever it is, we'll do it," said Lisbon, and Jane could practically see her mentally rearranging things to make room for this new job.
"Glad to hear it," said Minelli, working hard to keep the smirk off his face. When she found out what she'd just agreed to, she was going to flip.
"The Narcotics squad have planned a huge sting which is going to take place in two weeks," he said. "The operation is part of a Federal attempt to break up a nation-wide cocaine-smuggling ring. We've been charged with dealing with the California component, based in Los Angeles. "
"If it's a Fed case, why can't they do it themselves?" asked Lisbon.
"The California chapter is the smallest so as per usual they're focusing on the big, juicy arrests for themselves and leaving us the scraps," he said, grumpily. "But scraps or not, it's still a huge publicity coup for the CBI. It'll bring lots of good press."
"OK. So what, the Narcotics boys have asked for me as extra back-up or something?"
"They've requested that you be part of the operation yes," said Minelli evasively.
Lisbon shot a sideways glance at Jane. "Look boss, I'll be more than happy to go with them to provide a little more firepower but I'm not sure Jane's the right person to bring along. If it's going to come down to a shootout, I think one of my agents would be a better choice."
"Hey!" Jane protested from over on the couch. "I'm a good shot. You know that, you saw!"
"You're not a field agent," she said. "You're a consultant."
Minelli raised his voice slightly. "The LAPD have offered us the use of their entry team in return for shared credit in the arrests. We'll have plenty of units so we don't need you to take part in the arrest."
"I don't understand. What-?"
"Settle down, woman," said Jane. "Let him finish." But there was a twinkle in his eye that made Minelli think that he might have guessed what was coming.
"We need you to pose as a potential buyer. If we can arrest one of them in the act of selling to you we might be able to persuade them to testify against the others in return for leniency when we raid the rest of them."
She looked perplexed. "You want me to go undercover?"
"No, Lisbon," said Jane. "He wants us to go undercover. Together. Am I right?" he asked Minelli, who nodded.
"Together?" repeated Lisbon. "Together as what?"
Jane addressed Minelli once more. "From the way you're trying your best not to smile, I'm guessing you want us to pose as a married couple. Would that be correct?"
"WHAT?" Lisbon exploded, so loudly that passers-by peered through the window to try and see what was going on. "Me…married…him? No way. No!"
"May I remind you Teresa, that you did already agree to this," said Minelli.
"Well that was before I found out that you wanted me to pretend to be married to it!" She jerked a thumb in Jane's direction.
Jane got up off the couch and came to stand beside her. "I'm a little hurt," he said. "Would it really be that torturous to be fake-married to me? I think I could be a very good fake husband if you let me. I'll cook you dinner, and do the laundry, and mow the fake lawn at our hypothetical house-"
"Oh, shut up!" she snapped at him. "Can't you get someone else to do it?" she pleaded her boss. She looked desperate that Minelli found he felt a little guilty. Lisbon was in many ways, like a daughter to him and he hated to see her so upset.
"I'm sorry, Teresa,' he said. "But all the undercover personnel are on other assignments and we don't have time to train and brief anyone else. Besides, you two fight like a married couple already, so you won't even have to do a whole lot of acting."
Lisbon just glared at him, though it didn't have the same detrimental effect it had on most people. It probably had to do with the fact that Minelli was her superior, and though they were on reasonably good terms, in the end she had to do as she was told.
"This is going to be a blast!" said Jane enthusiastically. "Count me in!"
Minelli nodded. "Good. Teresa?" he asked his agent.
Lisbon was as stubborn as they came, but she was no fool. She could tell there was no way of getting out of this now, she had agreed after all. She made a mental note not to agree to anything in the future without finding out what it was first.
"Fine," she said irritably, and Minelli smiled at her.
"Thank you," he said. "It might not be so bad. You'll see."
Somehow, she doubted it.
Minelli handed them each a manila folder. "Here's all your background information as well as your new names, driver's licences, and IDs."
"How did you get all these so fast?" Lisbon wondered.
"I have my ways," said Minelli mysteriously. "Now we'll need to get you installed in your new place in L.A as soon as possible. Be ready to leave tomorrow."
"Tomorrow? But what about my team?"
"Appoint one of them to be in charge while you're away. That person is the only one you can tell what you're up to. Due to how important this operation is we can't risk our cover being blown."
"Sure, because my team are secretly criminals working to destroy the CBI from it's very core," she said sarcastically. "I trust them."
"I know you do, and so do I," he said soothingly. "But the Feds were very clear. Strictly need-to-know."
"OK, OK. Cho's in charge."
"Good. Now once you've done that I'll organise for you both to take the rest of the day off and prepare yourselves. Try and get used to calling each other by your new names if you can, we don't want any slip-ups later."
"No-one will believe Lisbon's gone home early," Jane pointed out.
"I know. That's why you're both suspended."
They both looked up at Minelli in surprise.
"Don't worry, I won't be filing any paperwork, and it won't show up on your record," he said, more to Lisbon then Jane, who really couldn't care less about such mundane things as suspensions. "We just needed a legitimate reason for you both to be away for a while."
Lisbon was still taking all this in, when he rose from his chair. "Your 'suspensions' will be effective in about half an hour. Good luck." he said, and went out.
As soon as he was gone, Jane eagerly opened the folder he had been given, and flicked through it until he found his new ID.
"William Hayne," he read. "That's not so bad. And I must say, this photograph is quite flattering as well." He turned the card around at all angles, admiring it.
Lisbon sat with the folder in her lap. Once Jane had finished marvelling at his photograph, he turned to her.
"Come on, let's see yours then," he said, snatching it from her.
"Hey!' she shouted, grabbing for it. "Give it back!"
Paying her no heed, he quickly located her ID. 'Your name is Rachel Hayne, but it says here your maiden name was Pearce."
"Great," she said, sardonically.
He closed the folder. "Well I guess there's only one thing left to do."
"Shoot ourselves in the head so we don't have to go through with this?" she suggested hopefully.
"Don't be stupid."
"Who said it was stupid? Seems like a great idea to me."
Jane opened the blinds in the office and pushed the door slightly ajar.
"There's something I need to ask you," he said, much louder than necessary. "It's really important, and it's about us, and our future."
Then when he came back he took her hands in his and lowered himself down on one knee.
"What the hell are you doing?" she hissed at him. "Get up!"
"Come on, if you're going to be my fake wife, I can at least fake-propose to you," he whispered back.
"You're more beautiful then all the stars in the sky," he continued, loudly again. "And you are my heart's one desire."
Lisbon resisted the urge to projectile-vomit. Could he be any more pathetic?
"Shut up!" she snapped at him. "People can hear you!"
He lowered his voice again. "That's the idea,' he informed her cheekily. She tried to pull her hands away from his, but he was holding them tight so she couldn't get away. "Now we can be suspended because of our 'illicit office romance', instead of the usual boring reasons."
"I'm perfectly OK with the 'boring' reasons," she said.
"I know you are," he said. "But I'd much prefer to go out amid the scandal of a steamy affair. Way more fun."
At this point, one of the women from Payroll happened to walk past the office. When she saw what was going on, her eyes lit up. She rushed out into the bullpen.
"Come quick!" she squealed. "I think Jane's popping the question to Lisbon!"
"No way," said Trey, from Cyber Crimes. "It can't be."
"I'm sure it is!" she said, unperturbed. "He's down on one knee and everything!"
There was a deafening screeching sound as forty-odd people rose as one, pushing back desk chairs and a virtual stampede as they raced across the room to Lisbon's office. Rigsby, Cho and Van Pelt were in the lead. This they had to see.
Jane heard the thundering of his approaching colleagues and grinned at Lisbon, who looked so pale that he thought she might faint.
"I am going to kill you," she said in a voice so quiet it was almost threatening.
"Not much chance of that," he whispered back. "You can barely stand, let alone do me any physical harm."
"Give me a minute and I'll get there."
Outside the door, they could hear pushing and jostling as everyone vied for the best spots.
"This suspension is coming at just the right time for me," he said in a carrying voice so that everybody outside could clearly hear it. "Because it's made me realize that this job has been holding me back from what I really want, and what I really want… is you."
Muffled giggles and whispered 'aws' could be heard from outside.
"You are the most controlling, domineering woman I have ever met," he went on. "You're so damn stubborn that you drive me up the wall and even when you know you're wrong you always have to have the last word, but you're the best thing that's happened to me in a long time and I am completely and madly in love with you."
She felt herself flushing with pleasure, and immediately was disgusted in herself. She was getting all stupid over a fake proposal. Jane was spouting off emotions he did not feel and here she was, lapping it up.
Good Lord, she needed to get a life.
"So now I am going to ask you the most important question a man will ever ask in his life," said Jane. "Will you, Teresa Lisbon do me the honour of becoming my (-'fake', he mouthed)-wife?"
The assembled spectators waited with bated breath for her answer, and Lisbon who felt that now she was here, she may as well do the thing properly, looked into his eyes. To her surprise, along with the glint of pleasure he was getting from her embarrassment, she also saw something that looked scarily like…hope.
She'd been planning on saying no, just to screw him up, but now she wasn't so sure. Had some tiny, insignificant part of him actually meant that?
Taken aback, she answered without thinking.
There was a split second's pause, and then the room erupted into applause. Women squealed with delight and hugged each other, while men opened their wallets and exchanged bills.
At the front of the crowd, Rigsby and Van Pelt's jaws dropped in unison, and even the briefest expression of surprise crossed Cho's features as the 'newly-engaged' couple turned around to face them.
"Give her a kiss!" shouted Katie, the woman who had called everyone over. There were shouts of agreement all round.
"Do we have to?" Lisbon asked Jane, quietly.
"If we wanna sell this, we do," he said. "Don't worry, I'll make it quick."
"I mean it, I am going to murder you," she hissed. "Slowly and painfully."
"Go ahead and threaten me all you want, but could you at least pretend to look happy?" he asked her. "We just got engaged."
"Fake engaged!" she snapped, as loudly as she dared.
"Come on you two, what are you waiting for?" came a shout from the crowd.
"They're getting impatient," said Jane nervously.
"Just so you know, I am not going to be the one to tell all these people that we aren't really getting married," she said.
Before she could respond, he pulled her into a passionate kiss, amid cheers and wolf-whistles. Rather then pulling away, she found herself kissing him back, her fingers running through his hair, forgetting about everyone watching. There was nobody but the two of them in the world.
Minelli had heard the commotion from upstairs and came striding through the crowd.
"What the hell is going on in here?" he demanded. "The whole building can-"
He trailed off as he saw Lisbon and Jane entwined around each other, kissing as if they were teenagers on a first date.
For the first time in his life, Virgil Minelli was rendered speechless.
"They just got engaged," sighed Katie. "Isn't that adorable?"
There were several words that came to his mind as he watched the spectacle, none of which he could say out loud but it was safe to say that they were mostly of the four-letter variety and 'adorable' was certainly not one of them.
"All right, everybody back to work!" he barked. "I'm sure you all have reports to finish!"
The crowd dispersed, muttering things like 'killjoy' and 'bitter old man.' Soon, only Lisbon's team remained, still rooted to the spot with astonishment.
Jane and Lisbon broke off from the kiss, breathless and red in the face.
"Whoa," said Rigsby, alerting them to the team's presence.
"Something you guys want to share with us?" asked Cho.
"We'll explain later," said Lisbon.
They were still so floored by what they had seen, the three agents obeyed straight away, with no further questions.
Jane and Lisbon smiled at each other.
"I think we sold it," said Lisbon.
"Yes we did," said Jane.
"Bravo," said Minelli dryly and they both cringed as they turned around to face him.
Minelli tried several times to form a sentence but failed. Eventually he was able to get out a single word.
Lisbon looked to Jane for the answer. Minelli noticed that they were still holding hands. He looked pointedly at them. Jane and Lisbon seemed to realize what he was getting at, and immediately let go, though he suspected that they did so rather regretfully.
Jane plastered on his most winning smile, the one that had got him out of numerous tight corners in the past.
"We were just, uh, practicing?"
Hope you liked it. I sure had fun writing it!