I don't own nothing, it all belongs to Kudos. Lucky them.
They were sitting in the living room, unwinding after the latest job. They'd conned a corrupt senator from America out of half a million for a gold mine that didn't exist. They deserved champagne.
"Cheers!" Danny said, wiggling his glass between two fingers. He laid back against the mustard yellow cushions and smiled broadly. "I told you it'd work out fine."
Albert, who sat beside him, almost spit his drink out. But being a gentleman, he managed to avoid doing so. Just. He stared at Danny, speechless. Stacy and Mickey on the other sofa, on the other hand, started shouting.
"You are such a wuss. First you screw it up and then you start wimpering about it. And now, suddenly, you're the hero." Stacy scoffed.
"You screwed up big time, Danny. If it hadn't been for Albert's quick thinking you wouldn't be sitting here. He's the one who saved our asses, and you know it." Mickey stated.
Danny rolled his eyes and leaned even furter back. "Yeah, well. If I hadn't screwed up at exactly the right moment, Albert wouldn't have been able to save the day. Besides, the mark was wary from the beginning. My mistake – if you want to call it that – only made him believe in us for real. It enabled us to pull it off and means that now he surely won't come after us."
Mickey opened his mouth to contradict this speech, but Ash managed to cut in. "In some warped way, Danny might actually be right. Collins was suspicious. But Danny's mistake made him trust us. I mean, he wouldn't expect anyone conning him to be that stupid!" he said, looking pointedly at the younger man.
"Yeah, yeah. It's typical of you lot to concentrate on my little hiccup, when the bottom line is that I'm actually the hero here."
Mickey groaned and Stacy rolled her eyes. "Ash, please! Don't encourage him."
"Why not, when he knows that I'm right. Deep down, you know it as well. Admit it." Danny said, looking expectantly at them.
"Never." Mickey and Stacy said in unison.
Albert put his glass down and walked out of the room, laughing. The rest of them chatted about the mornings events for a while.
Half an hour later, Mickey had gone with Albert to a horse race. Usually, Ash would have gone with them, but he had a bit of a headache and decided to stay at home nursing a whisky instead. He was sitting on the sofa with Stacy, watching the news, when Danny walked into the room.
Danny was still sulking. He sat down on the sofa in front of Stacy, blocking her view of the telly. "It's not fair. It was me who saved our skins, not Albert. Why can't you just admit it."
Stacy turned to Ash with a grin on her face. "Aww. Little Danny is still feeling sorry for himself."
Ash didn't answer, he just sighed and tried to cencentrate on the news.
Danny gave Stacy a saucy grin. "I'm not little. If you'd just let me, I'd show you ..."
"Danny! Not again." Stacy pulled a face and looked the other way. "Why can't you just accept that I don't fancy you!"
Danny winked at her. "Perhaps because I'm lovely. And hot. You know I am."
"No. You're just childish." Stacy replied.
"Come on, we both know you want me. And who could blame you!" Danny shrugged his shoulders, while looking intensively into her eyes.
Stacy just laughed "Down, boy."
A few moments later the quarrel was in full blossom. Danny grabbed a pillow from the sofa and smacked Stacy on the arm with it. She got up and grabbed a bottle of water from the table. "Just cool down" she said, as she started to pour mineral water over him.
Neither of them noticed when Ash turned the tv off and stood up to leave. He was almost out of the room when Danny grabbed Stacy by the arm and pulled her down beside him on the sofa. He started tickling her and she screamed with laughter.
Ash spun around. "Just stop it already, won't you." he shouted.
The two persons on the sofa froze and turned to look at him. "Ash?" Stacy questioned him and Ash turned red. He stormed out of the room.
"What's up with him? Doesn't know how to let loose, does he?" Danny said and started tightening his grip on Stacy again.
She wriggeled loose and gave him a stern look. "Cut it out." She got up and hurried in the direction Ash had left.
She found him on the balcony, looking out over the roof tops with his head in his hands. She stood back to watch him for a while, not knowing how to approach.
"I know you're there." he stated after a couple of minutes.
"You always do." she said softly and started walking towards him. She put an arm around him and felt him shake slightly under her touch. She gave his shoulders a squeeze. "What's wrong?"
"It just gets to me." He wasn't able to look up at her.
She stood silently waiting for him to continue.
"You and him. You're so close."
Stacy was taken aback. "What? We're arguing all the time. How is that being close?"
"There's a thin line between hate and love." he replied matter-of-factly.
"Tell that to Jeremy Clarkson and Piers Morgan." she joked.
He didn't smile, but looked up into the sky. "But you do love him, don't you?"
Stacy smiled. "No. He's like a brother. A very annoying little brother." She sighed. "Besides, there's someone else who's taken command of my heart a long time ago."
Ash finally looked at her. "Mickey?" he asked.
"No, silly. You!"
He looked utterly surprised.
Stacy gave a little laugh and looked warmly back at him. "How could you even think I'd fall for Mickey or Danny, when you're around?"
He turned around and put his arms around her waist. "Do you really mean that?" he asked, still uncertain.
She leaned in and wispered into his ear. "Of course I do. I love you, Ash. Always have and always will." She gave him a quick peck on the cheek and leaned back a little to look at his reaction.
She hardly had the time to see the big grin on his face and the warmth in his eyes before he pulled her into a close embrace.