Disclaimer: Neither the show nor the characters belong to me, they belong to ITV1. Nonetheless, I love to borrow them from time to time. The idea of the story as well as the story itself – including all possible pre- or sequels published afterwards – are mine.
Summary: Becker discovers a feeling he wasn't sure he was even able to feel. Written for the just-kiss-her prompt "Becker gets a twitchy eyebrow whenever someone else (aka male and not him) gets too close to Jess." made by mercscilla.
Warnings: none so far
Author notes: I'm not sure I'm doing this right with the link and all. It's the first time I ever wrote for a prompt and only the second time I wrote for the fandom. So I hope this was what you had in mind with your prompt. :)
"You're doing it again," Abby mumbled next to him, and he didn't even have to look at her to know that she was grinning from ear to ear.
"I don't know what you're talking about," he grumbled, his eyes refusing to turn away from the scene in front of him.
It wasn't that he had actually claimed her or anything. He didn't have a right to. And she had every right to talk to other men. Even if it was Sergeant Miller, who never tried to hide the fact that he had a certain interest in the young field coordinator, and who had just handed her a huge bouquet of flowers – with roses. Even if she was smiling at him like that…
Becker didn't notice his was clenching his fists until his fingers started to hurt in a cramp. He had never been jealous, not like this. It wasn't exactly hard for him to win a woman, if he wanted to, which most of the time he didn't. He'd had a few flings over the years, but nothing serious enough to feel even the slightest hint of jealousy.
But every time he watched Jess with other men, he found a sudden urge to kill one of his own comrades.
"Well, every time you see her with Miller – or any other man for that matter – you look like you're ready to kill someone," Abby told him, trying her best but failing to hide the chuckle. "Not to mention your eyebrow."
"What about my eyebrow?" he grumbled.
"It's twitching again," she replied. "As it always does when you're nervous – or angry."
He huffed something not understandable.
Jess was laughing about something Miller had said, and the other man used the opportunity to touch her elbow, causing Becker to draw in a sharp breath.
"You know," Abby said, her voice low as she was leaning in closer as if telling him a huge secret. "I wouldn't worry too much about Miller. There's another man she likes much more than him."
Becker's head snapped around, eying Abby suspiciously. "Who?" he burst out before he was able to stop himself.
"Well," she replied, grinning at him. "He's been talking a lot about one particular man ever since I met her, and she's nervous every time he's around, even though she can hide it pretty well most of the time."
Becker mumbled something about not having ever noticed any of this.
"Oh, and she blushed once he brought her chocolate," Abby added with a slight chuckle.
Chocolate? Wait, she wasn't talking about… Had anyone else ever brought her chocolate?
Becker turned to stare at her.
Abby rolled her eyes. "Yeah, you, Captain brilliant," she near enough growled, before heading off in another direction than the ADD. She turned in the corridor, though, calling out, "I hope you got her something nice for her birthday."
Becker grumbled. Did she think he'd forgotten about it – after Abby had been nagging him with innuendos the entire week? Or did she think he hadn't bought anything for her? He just hadn't been able to get her alone a single second to give it to her.
When Miller started making a bee line for the main corridor and finally out of the ADD, Becker took his chance and moved forward.
"Oh, hi, Becker," Jess greeted, a little too exuberantly, and she was sure she flushed again. Damn, she hated that he always had that effect on her. But the prospect of him hopefully congratulating her for her birthday made the stupid butterflies rise in her stomach again.
"Hey," he greeted, stuffing his hands in his pockets. "So… um… Are you enjoying your birthday?" Great way to start the conversation, really…
"Oh, yeah," she burst out. "Everyone's really sweet today and… Well, Abby and Connor surprised me with a birthday breakfast. Abby even baked a cake. And then Emily and Matt made me this huge present of some new software for my computer. They said Lester gave some money for it, too, but didn't want them to tell me. And then Miller brought me flowers, which is kind of sweet."
He smiled, a little bleakly. "Well, great. Um… I… I got something for you, too." He nervously fished the small box out of his pocket, handing it to her. "Happy Birthday, Jess."
Her face lit up. In fact, she seemed to be beaming as she took the small present from him. "Thank you," she whispered, looking at the box in her hand. It was neatly wrapped in blue paper with a pink rose attached on top. She couldn't help but wonder if he'd packed it himself.
Carefully, she unwrapped the present. It was too small and too square to be chocolate. So she wondered what it might be that Captain Becker would give to her for her birthday.
"It's… nothing special," he told her, feeling more and more nervous as he watched her unwrap the small box. "I mean… I just saw it and it reminded me of you, so I thought you might like it. But if you don't, that's okay."
"I'm sure I'll love it," she said, before she had time to think about her words. Fortunately, she bit her lip before she burst out that she'd love it because he had given it to her.
Becker drew in a breath as Jess revealed the small velvet box. What if she really didn't like it?
Looking at the box in awe, she tried to keep her hands from shaking too vigorously. It was too large for a ring and too small for a necklace. But it clearly was a piece of jewelry. Carefully, opening the box, she gasped when she looked at its content.
It was a pair of earrings, silver with a small heart made of a blue gem.
She stared at Becker, tears shining in her eyes, and then back at the earrings.
"As I said they… sort of… reminded me of you," he mumbled, unsure what else to say. "The gem is a… sapphire."
"They're beautiful," she whispered. "Thank you."
He smiled, letting out the breath he hadn't known he'd been holding.
Jess quickly took out the earrings she was wearing, and carefully put on the new pair. She examined herself in one of the black screens. "They're beautiful," she repeated. "I love them."
"Um… Jess?" he asked carefully.
"Yeah?" she smiled brightly, as she turned back to him.
"I was… wondering… if you… I mean," he stuttered. Okay, collect your thoughts and just ask her already! "Would you like to have dinner with me tonight?"
It wasn't that hard, was it? he heard Abby's voice in his head.
Jess stared at him for a second, then she stood up on tiptoes and wrapped both her arms around his neck. "Yes," she exclaimed. "Definitely yes."
Sighing with relief, he wrapped his arms around her and gently pulled her closer to him. Noticing a movement, he looked at the corridor leading away from the ADD and saw Miller stomping away.
He couldn't stop the triumphant grin from spreading all over his face. Miller had witnessed the whole ordeal – and hopefully now he understood that Jess was not at all available.