A/N This little fic is AU. I mentioned in my last fic that Penny was playing an assassin in a movie. And the more I thought about Assassin!Penny, the more I liked the idea. Of course, because I'm warped, we also have Assassin!Priya, Evil Genius/Mad Scientist!Sheldon and an assortment of other semi-recognizable characters. I may have had too much fun codenaming them, too. As always, thank you to SpaceAnJL, She Who Enables.
Disclaimer: If you think you recognize them/it then clearly they aren't mine and I make ZERO profit from them.
As the senior field operative, codenamed 'Husker' strode into the control center she was clearly grumpy. She slumped into a seat at the briefing table. The team leader, codenamed 'The Doctor', tapped her shoulder, three times and cleared his throat. "Oh, jeez, Doc, this isn't grade school, with assigned seats, and I sure as hell don't feel like playing musical freakin' chairs today." Nevertheless, she moved over one seat to the right.
"Aw, Husker. Did you wake up on the wrong side of somebody else's bed?" Another field operative, codenamed 'Scheherazade' said, her lilting voice snide.
"Shut up, 'Zade, before I make you less pretty," Husker said sweetly.
Scheherazade grinned at her. "Would you still love me if I weren't pretty?" She teased in a husky voice. She loved to torment the mechanical engineer, codenamed 'Tinker'.
Sure enough, his mouth gaped open and his beady blue eyes darted between the two women.
Before he could say something stupid, the team's bio-chemical engineer, codenamed 'Lucrezia' spoke, her childish voice tense. "This is not what we're here for."
"Quite right," The Doctor agreed, and since he was technically in charge, he called the meeting to order.
Of course Husker would never just let him be in charge, she had to challenge him in some way. "Aren't we missing someone?" She turned to Scheherazade, "'Zade, where's Lassie?"
Scheherazade shrugged. She was not responsible for her brother. "How am I supposed to …."
Just then, the communications operative, codenamed 'Lassie' came stumbling into the room. His original codename had been much nicer, but Tinker had started calling him Lassie, due to his inability to talk in front of their female team members. As mean as the nickname was, it unfortunately stuck. After three years, no one, except of course the Doctor with his eidetic memory, could remember the original.
Lassie held his hands up in supplication for being late. He opened his laptop and started to load something.
"What is it, Lassie," Tinker started. "Got something to show us?"
"I do not believe that such banalities serve any purpose," The Doctor said.
"Did Timmy fall…?"
"Doc's right. That's enough, Tinker." Husker interrupted.
Tinker subsided. The Doctor might scowl and give strikes. Husker would simply bust your nose if she thought you'd gone too far. Tinker liked it a lot better when they were bickering with each other. He certainly got away with more.
Lassie finished loading whatever he wanted to show them, and displayed it on the screen. It seemed that there had been an incident involving the formula for some specialized fuel that had gone missing. One Joyce Kim from North Korea, a known agent, had managed to liberate it from Caltech. A Dr. Leonard Hofstadter had been working on the project.
The Doctor spoke. "We are to determine Hofstadter's involvement, stop Kim, and retrieve the formula and fuel if it's been created." He nodded to Husker.
"Okay, Scheherazade you're on Kim. Do whatever you need to. I'll bring in Hofstadter, Lucrezia, you'll need to do your magic. I want to know how involved he is in this. We'll start with you in case he's just a dupe," here she turned to the senior interrogator, codenamed 'Sphinx', "but Sphinx be ready with something in case he's in on it. Doc, is the fuel dangerous?"
"Not if it the formula was executed correctly. It might be unstable, however, if any of the measurements are incorrect."
"Swell," Husker said. "Tinker, something to contain it then, if you would."
"As Milady wishes," Tinker said with a florid bow.
"Yeah, don't do that."
They all went their separate ways to fulfill their diverse assignments. When Tinker walked into The Doctor's lab, fifteen minutes later to get the specs for the containment unit, he found Husker sitting at the desk, going over the intel on Hofstadter. She was firing questions at The Doctor. "What's the difference between a theoretical physicist and an experimental one?"
"Experimental physicists, as a rule, take the work of other, theoretical physicists and attempt to prove or disprove what they've done. They seldom come up with anything original."
"Ah, do they serve a useful purpose?"
"Rarely, if they manage to prove something that is in question." He came over to read over her shoulder. "Dr. Hofstadter doesn't even appear to pursue even that much originality. He is running experiments that have been run elsewhere and re-creating them." There was clear disdain in his voice.
"Why?" She asked, perplexed.
"Occasionally they may stumble upon unexpected results."
"Huh," she said thoughtfully. "He must not have much self-esteem or confidence."
"It would be unlikely." Without turning his head from where he was peering over Husker's shoulder, he addressed Tinker. "Did you want something, Tinker?"
"Well, yeah, some idea on the containment unit?"
The two men wandered to the other side of the lab to discuss the specs needed. With a last puzzled glance at Husker, Tinker left. "What's his problem?" She asked once they were once again alone.
"He seems perplexed as to your presence here and apparent knowledge of basic psychology."
"Dumbass. Does he think I got this job just because I'm blonde and look good in skimpy clothes?"
"In a word, yes. You have never disclosed the nature of your discipline, or indeed, that you possess a discipline."
"If they don't know I have a degree in psychology, it makes it a lot easier to stay on top of them."
"Indeed. I often forget how sneaky you are." While his words weren't admiring, his tone definitely was.
"Aw, you sweet talker."
"Really, must you ...?" And he was off. She ignored his rant, continuing to read the dossier on Hofstadter.
Eventually, she interrupted him. "Sounds like if I show a little interest in him, I could probably get him to follow me willingly and not have to snatch him. Maybe a little judicious flattery?"
"That sounds like an adequate plan. Now, I have work to do, get out of my lab."
She narrowed her eyes at him.
"Please," he said grudgingly, well aware that she would have no compunction about punching him.
"I'll see ya' after while, then." And with that she left. He stared after her for a few minutes, and returned to his work.
Several hours later, Husker had Dr. Leonard Hofstadter in one of the interrogation labs. He was in a chair similar to a dentist's chair. Lucrezia was approaching him with a needle. Her high voice attempted to be soothing. "This will only hurt if you struggle, Dr. Hofstadter. Please hold quite still."
He struggled not to struggle. He was restrained in the chair, and was more than a little anxious about what was going to happen. That pretty blonde must have had something to do with this. She had walked into him at the Chinese place, spilling soy sauce on his clothes. He'd been flattered by the attention after she had bumped into him. She had fussed, offering to have his pants cleaned and to replace his meal.
His one clear thought as she'd stripped him of his pants at her apartment was that it was the most pleasant pantsing that he'd ever had (and he'd had a few). The next thing he knew, he was waking up secured to this chair. He should have known that pretty blondes don't go for guys like him.
He'd held still enough that the needle had barely stung. He felt himself growing more and more relaxed. "Hello again," he said to the small strawberry-blonde when she came back into the room.
"Hello, Dr. Hofstadter. How are you feeling?"
"Really, really relaxed." He gave a silly little giggle.
"Excellent," she turned from him, and grabbed some medical equipment. She checked his vitals and spoke to a camera mounted on the ceiling. "I think he's ready, Doctor."
"Proceed," a dispassionate male voice said.
The rest was a blur to Leonard. He knew that she had asked him question after question, and that he'd answered. Something about Joyce Kim. He gave another little giggle. He couldn't believe that a hot Asian chick had been so totally into him. Maybe that blonde had wanted him after all. After all, he was nice, he was smart, and their babies would be smart and beautiful. He was unaware that he spoke all of this aloud as a stream consciousness.
The Doctor dared a glance at Husker's appalled expression. "Not to mention imaginary," he said quietly to her.
She gave him a sidelong look. He gave her a little smile. She grinned back at him. Then her expression sobered. "I think it's pretty clear he was a dupe for Kim. 'Zade said she caught up with her in New York. She's on her way back with the formula. Kim hadn't had time to use it yet."
"Excellent." He looked at the monitor. "And Kim?"
"Will not trouble us again." She paused. "What do you think we should do about Hofstadter?"
"What do you suggest?"
"He's clearly a security risk. He's too smart to be left to his own devices, like with the fuel. And too horny. We should terminate him or bring him in. But I don't see letting him run loose."
"Let him have a small lab?"
"He's got family, and they'd probably miss him if we terminated. But with remote contact, and no unsupervised interaction… he might even be useful. On the other hand, his usefulness is limited, and we'd have to feed and shelter the little…."
"Homunculus," he finished.
"Ooh, great word, what's it mean?"
She snorted a laugh. "So the bottom line is, will the benefit outweigh the cost?"
"I don't believe that he is evil, and thus would prefer not to terminate him. However, there is one more point that must be considered; he believes that you have a romantic interest in him and may pursue you."
"Then I terminate his homunculus ass."
"Very well, perhaps I will let him test some of my theories. That might keep him out of trouble."
"That's your call, Doc. I sure as hell won't be able to use him in the field."
"I should say not."
"Except maybe as bait." Her grin was shark-like.
He gave her a disapproving glare.
Her grin softened into something more friendly. "Damn, it's been a long day. I think I'll head on home. You wanna' grab a bite?" She asked him as she headed for the elevator.
"Well, it's Monday. And as you know, Monday is…," he is interrupted by Tinker.
"Szechuan. Jeez, we all know what night it is. "
The Doctor sniffed in disdain. "Someone will have to pick it up, of course." He said as he hit the elevator button.
"Yeah," Husker continued. "They said they won't deliver until the damn elevator is fixed."
"If only they knew," Tinker laughed, as the elevator disgorged them on the 4th floor.
"If you'll call it in, Doc, I'll change and go get it." Husker said over her shoulder, as she opened the door to 4B.
"Very well," he replied from his own door across the hall. "Who all will be joining us?"
Tinker answered. "Lucrezia is finishing up with Hofstadter; Sphinx will be up in a few, so will Lassie. Just get one of the Happy Family Meals, and that should do."
The Doctor paused, gave a tiny smile and said. "Acceptable."
A half hour later, they were all gathered in 4A, sharing the meal. Husker, from her place next to The Doctor, surveyed their team. Most of the other teams thought that they were misfits, but they had the highest mission success rate. She shared a pleased look with The Doctor, and returned to her meal.
A/N Please note that the opinions expressed in this fic do not necessarily reflect my own or anyone else.