Disclaimer: The characters within are owned by Stephen J. Cannell and ABC.
Summary: Bill and Ralph use the 'magic jammies' to locate a bunch of stolen weapons.
AN: I would like to thank htbthomas for betaing this fic for me. This was written for JoZPierce for Yuletide 2011. Takes place sometime during the second season.
"Okay, kid, let's try that again," instructed Bill Maxwell as he watched his partner prepare to take off.
"Just let me catch my breath for a second, Bill," Ralph Hinkley answered, standing a few feet away from his friend.
Since that fateful night in the desert that brought them together and given the pair a powerful red suit, they had been trying to live up to what the 'little green guys' wanted them to do. It did not help that the instruction book was lost and Ralph had to muddle his way through using the suit. So, on the occasional weekend they would head out to the desert and practice.
How they got the suit always crossed Ralph's mind when he and Bill worked with it.
"Same as before, Bill?" Ralph asked, ready to take to the air again.
"Yeah, try to slow your descent before coming in for a landing and get your feet out underneath ya. That way you'll be landing under your own power instead of crashing into something," Bill stretched his back out remembering the last time he tried to get Ralph to land on his feet.
Ralph stood away from Bill, took three running steps and was in the air. His flying was still a little erratic but improving.
"Looking good, Ralph," Bill told his friend through the communicator. "Now come on back and land on your feet."
Ralph made a perfect, at least for him, turn and headed back the way he had come.
"All right, kid, now start slowing down and once you get close enough to the ground, land feet-first."
As instructed, Ralph started to slow down but the ground was getting closer and closer. That meant he wasn't slowing fast enough. He tried harder to decrease his speed but it still was not helping. The only option Ralph had left was to see if he could land on his feet at a run and hope for the best.
Bill could see what his friend was trying and thought, I hope you know what you're doing, kid. That thought also passed through Ralph's mind as he made his attempt.
He turned himself to a standing position which seemed to help Ralph slow down even more but it still was not enough to stop firmly. When his feet hit the desert sand, Ralph could not run - he sank down a bit and skidded right into Bill, knocking them both to the ground.
"You okay, Bill?" Ralph asked as he helped his partner to his feet.
Winded, Bill replied, "Yeah, I think that's all for today."
Once Ralph had changed out of the suit, they headed back to the city.
"You know, Bill, I like how we come out and work with the suit... but lately you've been really pushing hard to get the basics fine tuned. Why?" Ralph asked after a while in the car.
After a brief moment of silence, Bill provided an answer, "There's been some rumors floating around the Bureau that a large weapons cache is somewhere in the LA area."
"Has anyone followed up on those rumors?"
"Unfortunately no, since there are several active cases, there's not enough manpower or resources available to investigate. So, that's where we come in, kid. Me, you, the counselor and the magic jammies are going to look into this."
"And by using the suit, we'll be able to figure out how valid this rumor is. Okay, now I understand the extra time with me in the suit," Ralph said.
"This is certainly something the little green guys gave us the suit for."
"You don't have to convince me. Where do we start?"
When they finally made it to Ralph's place, they were pleased to find that Pam was there waiting for them. Before heading to Ralph's, they had stopped over at Bill's to take a look at some case files that might help in determining if the weapons cache was real or not. That was when Ralph contacted Pam and filled her in on what was going on.
Pam Davidson, besides being an attorney and Ralph's girlfriend, was the only other person who knew about the suit. A time or two, she had been instrumental in some of Ralph and Bill's exploits. It also helped that she could get them out of trouble if they needed her legal services. So, Ralph had given her a brief overview of what Bill wanted them to look at and to meet them at his house.
"So, Ralph tells me you're looking for some gunrunners," stated Pam as the two men entered Ralph's home.
"Yes, but it's more than likely that there are more than guns involved in this, Counselor," Bill told her as he deposited some files on the dining table.
Once the trio was settled around that table, Bill explained a little more to both Ralph and Pam about the weapons. Of course some of them would be various types of guns, but the scuttlebutt also included grenades, rocket launchers, land mines and the possibility of some missiles.
"You have got to be kidding," Ralph said dejectedly. In the past, they had run across some gunrunners but this was a different matter altogether.
"I wish I was, kid. That's the reason we really need to find out if this is legit or not," Bill said knowing full well the importance of locating those weapons if everything he heard was true.
For roughly an hour, the three of them tried to come with some kind of plan and to find a place to start looking.
A few days later
Their progress on finding the weapons was going nowhere. The only good news, if you could call it good, was that the rumors turned out to be true. Since he had no active case to investigate, Bill was ordered to look into it. Carlisle, who was Bill's boss, was not overly happy to give him this assignment. Of course, Bill was thrilled because when he and Ralph solved the case, he would get great pleasure in rubbing it in Carlisle's face.
At his desk, Bill was looking at the new information he had received concerning the case. As he had suspected, the weapons were definitely more than guns. Bill read reports from different parts of the country about all kinds of weapons being stolen and various sources were pointing to Los Angeles being the place for the weapons being stored.
When he finished reading the last report given to him, Bill's phone began to ring.
"Agent Maxwell," Bill answered swiftly, "Hold on a second while I grab a pen and some paper."
The person on the other end gave Bill some valuable information that could help him bust the people that are involved with the weapons. Once the other person hung up, Bill completed writing down what he was told.
"Wait until the kid hears about this," Bill said silently to himself.
He now had a solid lead to a possible location for the weapons and it was one he could really use Ralph and the suit on. Grabbing the phone to call Ralph about this new development, Bill was about to dial Ralph's number when he took a look at the clock.
"Damn, Ralph won't be done teaching those hooligans he calls students for another half hour." Bill placed the phone receiver back in place.
Ripping off a piece of paper from a notepad on his desk, Bill scribbled down the address he was heading to and placed it in his pocket. Bill hastily left the Bureau so he could tack that note to Ralph's door to let him know where he was going.
"Thanks again, Pam, for picking me up," Ralph said, appreciatively. "If I didn't have my briefcase with me to do some grading, I would've flown home."
"You're welcome, Hon, that's what girlfriends are for," Pam replied with a smile as she grabbed Ralph's hand to give it a gentle squeeze.
Ralph picked up their joined hands and kissed the back of Pam's for her kind words as they pulled into his drive way.
"Looks like someone left you a note," Pam said as she parked her car and noticed the note on Ralph's front door.
They both got out of the car, went to the door and Ralph showed the note to Pam.
"It appears that Bill has a lead to where the weapons are. Given the directions, he's going to the warehouse district. Hope he doesn't get himself into any trouble before I get there," Ralph told Pam, handing the note over to her once he finished reading it.
"You never know with Bill" Pam gave a short laugh.
Ralph smiled and nodded in agreement as he went quickly inside and changed into the suit. A couple of minutes later, he was outside wearing the magic jammies.
Pam helped him secure his cape, making sure he was ready to go.
"I'll follow you out there," Pam told him and then kissed his cheek. "Be careful, sweetheart."
"I always try to be," replied Ralph as he took three swift steps and was airborne.
Before following, Pam locked Ralph's door and got into her car to go to the location written on Bill's note.
Not long after Bill left the note with the directions, he was in the warehouse district. Not wanting to be seen, he left his car not too far from the warehouse he was going to check out. Luck seemed to be on Bill's side as he saw a couple of guys loading a truck with crates and one had accidentally broken open, revealing weapons.
As the weapons were being picked up and re-crated, Bill made his move towards the truck and the warehouse. With his gun drawn, he was about to move in, when Bill heard the familiar click of gun being prepped to be fired.
As Ralph closed in on the warehouses, he noticed a familiar looking car and went in that direction. Of course, in typical fashion, he crashed into a nearby garbage bin. It did not take Ralph long to get himself out of the bin and cleaned off when Pam arrived and parked her car right behind Bill's.
Pam asked Ralph once she came over to him, "You haven't seen Bill around?"
Ralph shook his before replying, "No, but there's an easy way to find him."
He got into the driver's side of Bill's car, flipped the sun visor down and began to concentrate.
It was not long until Ralph got a holograph of Bill's location. "He was caught just outside where all the weapons are stored. They're questioning him to see if they have to worry about anyone else finding them. Unfortunately for them, they're right about Bill not being alone. Honey, I want you to use Bill's radio to call for back up and to stay here. I don't want you anywhere near those weapons."
Before another word could be said between them, Ralph turned invisible and headed towards his partner.
Ever since Ralph could control his power of invisibility, it had come in handy just like it would now in saving Bill and ending this weapon smuggling ring. The first thing he did was take care of all the guys outside of the warehouse. Ralph loaded everyone up in the back of the truck.
He made sure all the guys were tied up tightly so they could not move. Ralph did the same to all the men inside. Once that task was done, he searched for Bill. Taking a look towards the back, Ralph spotted Bill.
"Agent Maxwell," the ringleader said, tossing Bill's ID back at him. "I assume you aren't alone – because who would be stupid enough to do that?"
At that moment Ralph dropped down on the man that was talking to Bill, knocking him down. To his surprise, Ralph remained on his feet.
"Look at that, Bill, all that practicing paid off!" Ralph proudly exclaimed while he easily broke the ropes that held Bill to his chair.
"Great work, kid, I'm glad you made it here. Where're the others?" asked Bill as we picked up his ID.
"All tied up in the truck."
Before either of them could say another thing, the guy who had been questioning Bill had a little surprise for them. "You two aren't going anywhere." The man then flashed a hand grenade at them.
Ralph immediately asked, "Bill, how long do we have if he pulls that pin?"
"Just a couple of seconds and this whole warehouse will go up with it because there's still a lot of weapons and ammo still in here," answered Bill as he kept his focus on the man with the grenade.
Not wanting to serve even one day in prison, the guy pulled the pin. With a burst of speed he did not know he had, Ralph grabbed Bill and super-speeded out of the warehouse. Just as they were about a hundred or so feet away, the warehouse went up in a ball of flame.
The force of the blast pushed Ralph and Bill away but Ralph used his body to protect his partner.
"You okay, Bill?" Ralph asked as they slowly stood up from the pavement.
"Yeah, kid, thanks for the save," Bill stated as he brushed himself off.
Sirens could be heard in the distance. That was Ralph's cue to get out of there.
Ralph's house a day later
Ralph, Pam, and Bill sat outside as Ralph grilled some hamburgers. As they ate, Bill informed about what happened after Ralph left.
"That warehouse that blew wasn't the only one that had weapons in it," Bill started his tale after a bite of his burger. "A few of the guys that Ralph tied up gave us two other locations. Those two were loaded with so many weapons that you could start World War Three."
"I'm not only thankful you guys found them but that you both weren't hurt," Pam said, squeezing Ralph's hand and giving him a warm smile.
"I believe this calls for a toast," Ralph said. He and Pam grabbed their wine glasses while Bill grabbed his can of beer. "To a job well done."
With a round of "Here, here", they celebrated another completed case.
AN: I would like to hear what you thought so leave a review. No flames please.