Written in response to our recent challenge on Chit Chat on Author's Corner – Pick Your Own Pairing Challenge. My chosen pairing was Rossi/JJ, and my assigned topic was "There's a creepy-crawly (or creature) in the house and A makes B get rid of it-but humanely." You'll see that I've tweaked that topic just a little bit! Thanks to Tracia (ilovetvalot) for being a wonderful friend, beta, and co-author. I refuse to write without her…ever!
Written in response to our recent challenge on Chit Chat on Author's Corner – Pick Your Own Pairing Challenge. My chosen pairing was Rossi/JJ, and my assigned topic was "There's a creepy-crawly (or creature) in the house and A makes B get rid of it-but humanely." You'll see that I've tweaked that topic just a little bit!
Thanks to Tracia (ilovetvalot) for being a wonderful friend, beta, and co-author. I refuse to write without her…ever!
Letting out a sigh of contentment as he stepped up onto his wooden wrap around porch, David Rossi felt his body start to relax as he reached for the doorknob. It was a gorgeous Friday afternoon, their team was on stand down for an entire week, and he had very serious plans to do absolutely nothing for the next seven beautiful days.
Well, he amended with a smile as he stepped into his airy kitchen, he planned to do a little bit more than nothing…he planned on being very occupied with his lovely wife. His wife who had made him a very happy man when she finally married him just four short weeks ago. His wife who had beat him home and apparently had started dinner, if the delicious aroma of roasting chicken invading the air was any clue.
Now what other treasures had she prepared for him to find?
What he didn't expect to find was his normally sane wife currently camped out smack dab in the middle of their dining room table. And from the look on her face, she wasn't exactly enjoying her change of altitude.
Raising one brow as he met her obviously frazzled eyes, he asked, drily, "I take it your investigating new uses for our furniture?"
"Where have you been?" Jennifer Jareau Rossi demanded from her newfound perch, rising up on her knees as her eyes searched frantically around her. Holding up her clenched hand, she waved her cell phone in his direction as she exclaimed, "I've been trying to call you for an entire hour!"
"Dead battery. My phone died on the way home," Rossi answered, narrowing his eyes as he realized that the woman he loved was troubled. His long legs eating up the distance in the long room, he moved toward the table as he asked, "What's wrong, Jen? Are you hurt? What's scared you?"
Swatting at his hands as he attempted to pull her from her safety zone, she snorted as she declared, "I'm not leaving this table until you take care of…" And pointing over his shoulder, she yelled, "THAT!"
Turning in the direction of her wavering finger, Rossi couldn't stop the grin that started spreading across his face as his eyes found the object of her dissatisfaction curled around the potted plant in the corner of the adjoining sunroom. Shaking his head, he said, a chuckle in his voice, "Jen, honey, it's just a snake. I'm sure that…."
"JUST A SNAKE?" she yelped, bouncing furiously against the sturdy table, her long blonde hair flying around her shoulders. "I don't know what cave you were raised in, Rossi, but I do NOT share my residence with creatures that are designed to murder me in my sleep! If my gun wasn't already locked upstairs, I'd have blown that thing to kingdom come! Get it out!"
Taking a few steps toward the sunlit room, Rossi took a closer look at the obviously harmless reptile as he said, knowingly, "I thought so. This is Buddy. He's harmless."
Narrowing her eyes as she stared in shock at the man that she had heretofore considered perfectly rational, JJ ground out, "Are you out of your ever-loving mind, Rossi? Saying that spawn of Satan is harmless is the same as saying that Jack the Ripper was merely out on midnight strolls! GET. RID. OF. IT!"
Letting out a deep sigh as he recognized the steely tone in his lover's voice, Dave held up a hand as he said, "Buddy's my barn snake. You just hadn't met him yet since you've only lived here for a month. Every now and then he takes a trek. The door must've been open and he found a warm place to take a nap for the afternoon."
"Well, I hope he enjoyed his last tiptoe through the tulips. If you won't take care of him, I will. Give me your gun, Rossi," JJ ordered, holding out her hand as she scooted toward the end of the oval table.
"Let's not resort to violence just yet," Dave replied, reaching for a small basket on the side table as he moved toward the corner of the room.
JJ watched in horror as Dave deftly captured the slumbering reptile's head. Shivering as the slinky snake wrapped around his arm, she yelped, "Dave! Do you have a death wish? Just shoot the thing and put it out of my misery!"
Slipping the reptile off his arm and into the deep basket with one skillful move, Dave smiled victoriously as he said, "See, babe? Everyone's safe and sound, Buddy included. Now he can move back to the loft where he belongs, and we can have our house back." Wriggling his eyebrows, he added, hopefully, "And maybe we can find a more enjoyable way to spend the rest of the evening. I think I can find a few reasons for you to come off that table."
"Oh, hell no!" JJ snapped, curling her legs underneath her as she sat cross-legged in the center of the oak table. ""Don't even THINK about touching me after you let that thing touch you! And until you've searched every nook and cranny of this house, I'm perfectly happy to spend the rest of the evening right here, thank you very much."
And as he plodded through the back door, JJ's mutterings hanging darkly in the air, David Rossi couldn't help but wonder how his perfectly wonderful weekend had suddenly taken a turn for the worse. Staring down at the wicker basket he held at arm's length, he grumbled as he moved toward the barn and unceremoniously dumped the unwanted visitor onto the hay, "Let's get one thing straight, snake. You pull another stunt like this, and I'll have no problems letting my wife use you for target practice and turning you into snakeskin boots. There's a new sheriff in town, and she ain't real fond of your kind, if you get my drift."
And as a completely oblivious Buddy the snake slithered away into the straw, Dave turned back toward his home. Maybe this time…just maybe…he could start all over again with his less-than-thrilled wife.
But just as he stepped onto the back porch, his wife's shrill shriek rent the air…and David Rossi winced as he belatedly remembered that snakes often travelled in pairs.
And just like him, Buddy had a wife.
There is ONE day left to sign up for the October Challenge, "The Candyland Challenge". In the spirit of Halloween, the rules are simple. Name a candy, a pairing you'd like to see written and the pairing you normally write. You'll be assigned a pairing and a candy by October 1st. You will have until Halloween (October 31, 2010) to post a story with your candy prompt and pairing. It does NOT have to be a Halloween story...it just must contain a reference to the candy. For example, if you were assigned a "Goo Goo Bar" as a candy, you could make that the candy an actual BAR in your story. The more creative, the better. Sign-ups are at the forum (Chit Chat on Author's Corner) or you can shoot us a PM (ilovetvalot OR tonnie2001969) if you're interested.
Also, don't forget to get your nominations in for the first EVER "Profiler's Choice Awards. Nomination ballots and rules are at the forum. Ilovetvalot is still willing to write a oneshot of your pairing choosing to the next five people to complete a ballot. This is a wonderful opportunity to give your favorite stories and authors the recognition that they deserve on ff. net. Also, please remember, in the interest of just saying "no" to self-promotion, ilovetvalot and tonnie2001969 are NOT eligible for nomination.