Author's note: I originally wrote this after I had seen the season 2 episode, Games of Chance. In it, Kim Brown comments that Bob 'stole her away from Ethan' with a radiator. This was my take on how that might have happened.

Disclaimer: the characters aren't mine, and are the property of Shawn Ryan and CBS. No copyright infringement intended.


Pulling over to the side of the road, Kim Harrington sighed in frustration and rested her head against the steering wheel. Her piece-of-junk car had given up the ghost, again. Thinking about it, she was amazed it had lasted this long after the last repair job, but she relied on her car – it was her only way of getting to her waitressing job. As a college student, she needed all the shifts, and extra money that went with them, that she could get. Glancing up, she could see small wafts of steam curling out from under the engine. Great, Kim thought. I don't know much about cars, but this looks bad. This is the last thing I need.

Relieved that she wasn't too far from home, Kim gathered her things, locked her car, and begun to walk. As she walked, her thoughts turned to trying to work out just how she was going to get her car repaired. If the problem was major, which she thought it might be, then Kim was certain that her finances wouldn't stretch to cover the costs of repairs. No car meant no transport. No transport meant no way of getting to work. Not getting to work meant getting fired. And that, Kim thought, was the last thing she needed right now.

It was times like these Kim really wished Ethan was still around. Her ex-boyfriend had ended their long term relationship without explanation when he'd finished his undergraduate degree and gone onto grad school in California a few months ago. They had met when Kim started college and Ethan was a senior. To Kim and many of their friends, their relationship had seemed pretty strong. Obviously, we were wrong, thought Kim wryly.

She was startled out of her thoughts when she collided suddenly with someone. Glancing up, Kim murmured

"Sorry, I wasn't looking…..oh, hi Bob" She'd run into Bob Brown. Kim knew the tall, well built soldier from the diner she worked at. They had had several conversations, which had lead to a friendship. A mutual friend had once told her that Bob was interested in her. Kim couldn't deny that Bob was handsome, but she had long ago decided she didn't want to date and/or marry a soldier (having grown up as an Army brat), plus she was dating Ethan at the time so nothing had eventuated beyond friendship.

"You look like you've got something on your mind" commented Bob, as he fell into step beside Kim.

"You could say that," Kim replied. "My car's died AGAIN and I think its pretty major this time. I rely on my car to get to work, and I just don't know how I'm going to afford the repairs."

Bob thought for a moment. "I can't promise anything, but what about if I had a look at it? I know a bit about cars, so maybe I can fix it. If not, I have some friends who can probably help you out. Do you want me to have a look at it now?"

"That would be wonderful," replied Kim.

A few hours later, things were looking decidedly up for Kim. Bob had looked at her car, and while he pronounced the damage serious – a busted radiator - he was confident that a friend of his could be of assistance. He'd also asked Kim out to dinner. Kim had initially been in two minds, but had accepted the invitation. Even though he was a soldier, Kim sensed after today that there was something different about him when compared to the other soldiers she had known. He genuinely seemed to care about people and wanted to try and make things right for them. "Anyway", thought Kim. "It's just dinner. Nothing more."