SAFETY DANCE (EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES)
Season 1, post 1x09.
Disclaimer: Leverage and its characters are not mine. Don't sue.
A/N: This is a pointless scene with neither context nor depth, just almost-but-not-really team bonding. Reviews are always wonderful but not solicited, and thank you for reading!
"I can be a stripper," Parker insisted. "Why can't I be a stripper?"
Hardison grinned, more at Nate's expression than the possibility of partial Parker nudity, and added helpfully: "That is a good question. She should strip if she wants to… And leave y'all behind. Because y'all don't strip and if you don't—"
He made a quailing sound and swallowed the rest of the song, sinking in his chair to escape Eliot's glare. It was the sort of glare that would make the Grim Reaper cry.
"Because you can't, Parker," Eliot growled finally, redirecting his glare to the thief.
She eyed him indignantly. "Why can't I? I can. I can rappel off a building, I can swing around a pole."
Sophie reached across the table to set a placating hand on Parker's arm. "No one is questioning your ability to strip, Parker. You'd make a fine stripper. It's just that this man, this very bad man, will be trying to… well…"
"Hit on you," Eliot suggested tersely.
"Exactly. And you do remember what happened the last time a mark hit on you, don't you?"
"Yeah," Parker said, perking up a little. "I hit on him back."
"You stabbed him with a fork!" Eliot said.
She quirked her lips and gave him a look that suggested he was being rather slow. "Of course. That's what I meant."
Eliot groaned, clearly one comment away from banging his head on the table, and only an intense desire to live stopped Hardison from laughing. Fortunately, Nate had finally pulled himself together well enough to take charge again: "So, Parker, we're not going to ask you to be a stripper—"
"I think it sounds kind of fun," Parker chirped hopefully.
Eliot's forehead hit the table.
Nate gave her a stern look. "No, Parker, it does not sound fun."
"No," he said flatly. Parker crossed her arms and leaned back in her chair with a petulant huff, which Hardison privately thought was adorable and Sophie sort of smiled at. But Nate, who Hardison suspected would be unaffected by a room full of fluffy kittens, plowed on, expounding on the details of his latest hairbrained plan and then ending it all with, "And this way, everyone gets to keep their shirts on."
Hardison and Eliot locked eyes a second before Parker wheedled, "I kind of like taking my shirt off."