A/N: Last week, I was put in charge of baking the cake for a coworker's birthday. It was a specific recipe and brought me no small amount of hell to complete. When I was telling the tale of the ingredients attacking me in the store, the search for a Bundt pan, and the fiasco of baking two cakes, another coworker (also a Spooks fan) brought up the idea that Lucas would have kicked ass at this whole birthday cake thing. Our conversation quickly fell into the ridiculous and I wrote up this first chapter. Only days later, the MI6 cupcake plan came out and I knew I had to post it. This is absurd, so don't read it if you don't like funny. Set early S9. And thus endeth the longest A/N ever. :)
"We Have a Situation"
It's already been a rough day on the Grid and it's not even noon yet. Ruth sighs as she flicks through the files on her desk. She's still not convinced that Beth is trustworthy – something about her bottles of wine disappearing challenges her faith in the young woman – and Lucas has been moodier than ever. Plus there's the strain between herself and Harry which, quite frankly, will probably never go away for better or worse. She glances over at his office and sees him talking animatedly on the phone. Her heart constricts – how she'd love to smooth that furrowed brow with her lips, to massage the tension in his shoulders away, to…
Her mind is wandering into dangerous territory and she forces her mind back to work. She's still sighing over papers when Harry steps out of his office.
"Meeting room," he snaps. "Now."
The team shuffles in, Tariq frantically typing something on his mobile. Ruth shakes her head and follows the younger spooks into the room, clutching her notebooks to her chest. The only seat open that's not on the completely other end of the table is right next to Harry.
She sits down stiffly, doing her best to avoid brushing elbows with her boss. As long as she doesn't touch him, they can be professional. Or at least she won't want to rip off his clothes and tell him to take her right here on the meeting room table…
NO, she thinks firmly. Focus on what he's saying. Pay attention!
"We have a situation," Harry says, looking around the table at his officers.
"Is it a bomb?" Dimitri asks excitedly. "I can go diffuse it!"
"No," Harry says slowly.
"It's South Americans, isn't it?" Beth's eyes are glowing. "I'll take them!"
"No," Harry repeats, starting to sound annoyed.
"It's the Russians," Lucas says knowingly. "It's always the Russians."
"Actually, lately it's been anyone but the Russians," Ruth says. Lucas shoots her a deadly look.
"It's not the damn Russians," Harry snaps.
"This chair squeaks," Tariq says, leaning back and forth, the loud squealing of metal making all the spooks cringe.
"Thank you, Tariq, for making that amply clear," Harry growls. "Now, unless you all want to be shipped off to Siberia, I'd recommend you shut up and listen."
Ruth bites her lip as the others sink into their chairs, grumbling quietly.
"Right," Harry says, staring at his officers. "I assume I may continue?"
They all nod silently.
"Good. Now," he begins again. "We have a situation. Six has decided that we don't embarrass them enough through our work, so they're going to try to beat us at recreational activities as well."
"What, like skiing?" Beth says.
"Don't be stupid, Bailey," Dimitri says, rolling his eyes.
"Bailey has a point," Lucas says, flicking his head back and staring down everyone around the table. "What kind of recreational activities?"
"If you could all shut up for one minute, I might be able to tell you!"
Ruth smirks at the surprise on the others' faces. She slides slightly closer to Harry.
"Thank you. When I said 'recreational activities,' what I meant was…" He blushes slightly and Ruth raises an eyebrow.
"They've challenged us to a baking contest."
Beth and Dimitri's mouths drop open. Lucas starts sifting through his pockets, no doubt looking for his folding knife. Tariq types on his phone again. Ruth turns to Harry.
"What do you mean, a baking contest?" she says, watching his face.
"You're the bloody analyst!" Her gaze hardens and he sighs. "I'm sorry, Ruth," he says softly. "I just… I don't know how we're going to win."
"The same way we do everything," Lucas says, finally pulling out his gun and pulling the slide back. The click shocks Tariq enough to drag his attention from his phone.
"And how's that?" Harry says, eyeing the gun warily.
"I don't think we can win by shooting the judges, Lucas," Dimitri says. Lucas glares at him.
"Want to bet on that?"
"Look," Beth cuts in, "I'm as gun-happy as old Ruskie here, but I think Levendis has a point. You can't exactly hold a gun to a judge's head and expect them to pass your sugar sculpture off as the best. We might have to play fair."
"That's ridiculous," Lucas mutters.
"Anyway," Harry says, "we've got to come up with a plan. Apparently there are three categories: cakes, cupcakes, and fancy dessert."
"I'll take fancy dessert!"
Everyone stares at Lucas as he waves his arm in the air.
"I'm good at fancy desserts," he says seriously. "I make a mean crème brûlée. It's the only reason the Russians let me live," he adds conspiratorially to Beth. She nods indulgently, not letting him see her skeptically raised eyebrows.
"That takes care of one spot. Who wants to be Lucas's partner?"
Tariq lets out a cheer and raises his hand.
"Right. Tariq, you and Lucas will cover the fancy dessert."
"What?" the techie says, his head snapping to Harry.
"You just volunteered to be Lucas's baking partner," Harry says, furrowing his brow. "You were shaking your hand."
"Oh, it wasn't about volunteering," Tariq says, holding out his phone. "The PM just started following me on Twitter."
"What?" Harry says. "What is a twitter?"
"That's not an approved piece of technology," Ruth says, staring at the phone.
"The PM follows you?" Dimitri says indignantly.
"Along with all of GCHQ, most of Section C, and a few people who go by Nefarious_Nigerian 1, 2, or 3."
"What the hell do you say that's so interesting?" Beth says, snatching up his phone.
"Everything I say is hilarious," Tariq says, his chest puffed up proudly.
"Tariq, I don't think Nefarious_Nigerian 1, 2, or 3 follows you for your butter-knife sharp wit," Dimitri says. "I think it's more due to the fact that you say things like, 'off 2 find killr. looking in2 nigerians. watch out ppl.' It kind of gives our plans away."
"You're just jealous because the babe in Section A doesn't follow you," Tariq says. Dimitri's jaw tenses and he goes bright red.
"Can we return to the present and forget about Tariq's twitters?" Harry growls.
"Tweets," Ruth corrects.
"Whatever. Now who's going to do the cupcakes?" When no one responds, Harry sighs. "Right. Dimitri and Beth, you're doing cupcakes."
"Cupcakes, Bailey," Harry snaps. "You and Levendis. Cupcakes."
"What the hell is a cupcake?"
Dimitri stares at his partner. "What, did you live under a rock?"
She punches him.
"So that leaves you and me, Ruth," Harry purrs. "Making the cake."
A/N: So what do you think? Worth continuing with? Reviews are greatly appreciated… :)