I don't own these characters.
"Masks! We finally get to use masks and Ethan is the one that gets to wear one! I mean I made the blasted thing, so why can't I be the one who gets to wear it?" Agent Benji Dunn ranted from the driver's seat of an unmarked van used by the IMF team made up of Dunn himself, Ethan Hunt, Jane Carter and the man sitting beside him in the passenger seat, William Brandt.
"I could have easily taken the job of getting the files from our target!" Benji exclaimed, looking away from the road to look at Brandt. Their van started to drift to the right towards the guardrail, the only thing separating them from a steep hill.
"Uh...ah, Benji?" Brandt questioned as he sat up a little bit straighter in his seat and gripped the handle on the door till his knuckles turned white. The driver looked back to the road and steered the car back into the lane. Brandt let out a long breath as he relaxed back into the seat before he shot Benji an angry look.
Benji was completely oblivious though, caught up in his disappointment of not being able to wear a mask on this mission. However, this mission was a simple one. Ethan, disguised in a mask, had one file to retrieve in a low security hotel room and only used Carter for back-up. Benji and Brandt took on the role of "look out" by driving around the block while the other two team members completed the fairly easy assignment.
"It's like there's a conspiracy going on! Let's never let Benji wear a mask!" The agent once again looked over at Brandt, and completely missed a stop sign. Luckily, the street was deserted and no one was coming.
"Oh my God." Brandt mumbled under his breath as he closed his eyes and reveled in the fact that he was still alive.
"Would you relax? You act like you're in a life or death situation!"
"Well with you behind the wheel, it is a good possibility I am!" Brandt shot back.
"I'm a good driver." Benji stated as if Brandt's suggestion was illogical.
"So almost taking out a guardrail and running a stop sign is considered good driving?"
"I didn't take out a guardrail! We weren't even close to grazing it. As for the stop sign...I'll admit I missed it...but I mean no one was coming and it was a one time occurrence."
Brandt gave him a disbelieving look.
He just shook his head. "Will you please just keep your eyes on the road?"
Benji rolled his eyes, but did as he was asked.
They were now on their seventeenth trip around the hotel when Ethan came over the radio telling them to meet them at the front of the hotel in five minutes. Brandt reported back, confirming the order. They drove around once more, Benji's eyes had yet to leave the road as he softly sung along to the radio and drove, while Brandt looked out the window characteristically quiet.
Benji made a right turn then nonchalantly drove through a green light. Unfortunately, someone else drove through the intersection but from the opposite direction. The front of the vehicle made contact with the passenger side of the van and sent it spinning out of control, then end over end in two complete cycles, before coming to a stop on its roof.
Benji groaned as the pain in the side of his head pounded with such force it made his stomach churn. He blinked sluggishly, then focused his gaze on his surroundings. In seconds he remembered the wreck as he saw shattered glass, smoke, an upside down view of the street they were on and blood. He knew some of it was his, but certainly not all of it. That's when he remembered Brandt in the passenger seat.
"Brandt?" He called out, before he turned his head as fast as he could without making his head spin. The concussion he knew he had was doing that enough. He didn't get an answer and panic started to rise in his chest. He saw his friend still buckled in the passenger seat, but couldn't see his face. "Dammit, Brandt! Answer me!"
Finally, like the miracle he was silently praying for, Brandt shifted in his seat, but bit back a scream. Instead, he settled on a muffled groan and slowly turned his head to look at Benji.
"Thank God, Will! I thought you were dead." Benji laughed with relief as he tried to figure out a way the best way to get out of the upside down van.
"I-if you don't get me out of here...I will be." Brandt replied breathlessly. Benji's head turned a little to fast at the sound of Brandt's voice and he had to close his eyes for a few seconds to make the world stop spinning.
He was about to ask Brandt to elaborate, but one look at the man's pale face told Benji that he just needed to get his friend out of the van.
"Okay...alright, not a problem man. Just uh, just give me a second." Benji replied while he carefully undid his seatbelt and eased himself down from the seat. With some effort he managed to open his door and climb out. He looked around to see the car that had hit them sitting in the middle of the street, but there was no driver. He noticed there was no one standing around on the street except Jane who was running after a man in the opposite direction while Ethan was running towards him, without his mask.
He didn't wait for Ethan to reach him though. He wobbly ran around the van to the passenger side and knelt down beside the window to see Brandt breathing heavily, his eyes shut tightly in pain. His right arm was dangling limply above his head while his left arm was wrapped around his stomach.
"Will?" Benji finally voiced his name shakily and got a groan in response. Before he could say anything else, Ethan suddenly knelt down beside him.
"Benji! There's a gas leak!" Ethan shouted as he looked through the window, which was completely busted, then back at Benji. "How bad is he?"
"I...I..." Benji stuttered for a moment, his concussion, fear and panic making his words get caught in his throat.
"I-I don't know... h-his arm looks broken and I think there's something wrong with his stomach."
Ethan nodded, and bent back down.
"Brandt. I need you listen to me, ok? Just listen. Benji and I are going to get you out of here. I need you to be as still and as limp as possible ok? Just let us get you out."
The agent nodded in understanding, before Ethan told Benji to go back around to the other side and undo Brandt's seat belt. Benji did and they eased their teammate down to the top of the van, resulting in a muffled cry of pain from Brandt.
Benji cringed at the sound, while backing out of the van and then stumbling back to Ethan. He could only helplessly watch as Ethan reached in and placed his arms under Brandt's and pulled him out.
This time Brandt did scream as his broken right arm was jarred and his stomach was straightened out. Benji cringed even more as Ethan dragged the agent to the other side of the street while Brandt screamed through gritted teeth and begged for him to stop. Ethan collapsed when he felt that he was far enough away from the van. He was sitting down, Brandt's back leaning against his chest and Benji kneeling beside the two of them, his hands hovering over Will's stomach unsure of what to do.
Before Ethan could ask what was wrong, the van exploded with a loud bang. Both Ethan and Benji hovering over Brandt to protect him from flying debris. Luckily they were a safe distance away and the three of them watched the van burn with odd fascination until Jane appeared next to them.
"Are you guys alright?"
"J-just peachy." Brandt mumbled as he tried to shift in Ethan's grasp, but stopped when he felt a sharp pain in his stomach.
"Ahh...Don't move." Benji stated and hesitantly added, "You've got a piece of glass sticking out of your stomach." He offered a small sympathetic grin when Brandt paled even more and glared at him.
"We have to get him to a hospital." Jane said, reaching for her phone and dialing 911.
"Don't let Benji drive." Brandt replied, on the verge of passing out, but his light-heartedness could still be detected.
Benji scoffed. "This was not my fault! That car hit us. Our light was green!"
"Yeahhhh," Brandt slurred and drug out, "like the... color of my face when you ran that s-stop sign."
Jane had hung up the phone after confirming their location to the EMTs and shared a look with Ethan before breaking up their banter.
"Speaking of the guy who hit you, he's in the wind. I couldn't catch him."
"Try to find something in his car before the paramedics get here." Ethan said as he adjusted his grip on Brandt who had lost his battle with consciousness.
Ethan watched the ambulance that was transporting Brandt and a nervous Benji to the hospital drive off before turning to Jane.
"Did you find anything?"
"Yeah." She replied with a grim look on her face. "We've got a big problem."
"What is it?"
She took a deep breath and swallowed audibly while handing him a busted cell phone. She watched his jaw clench and his knuckles turn white from the death grip he had the phone in. He was breathing heavy when he turned to look at her with hard eyes.
"H-hello?" Benji's voice came over the phone as distracted and Jane soon found out why when she heard Brandt's voice in the back ground singing Billy Joel's song New York State of Mind. "Brandt. Brandt! Inside voice, man. Inside voice. We talked about this, remember?"
She rolled her eyes and shook her head, though Benji couldn't see her. "Benji!"
"Dear God, Jane! Not so loud please! Between you and the Billy Joel cover band concert, the mild concussion I have will soon be turned into a hemorrhage!"
"Benji! How's Brandt?"
"Um...he's high as a kite right now. I feel cheated. They clearly gave him more pain medication than me. Apparently a broken arm and a small puncture would deserves more drugs than a mild concussion."
"Benji listen to me. There's a hit out on Brandt."
"A hit? What? Are you joking?" Benji rambled in disbelief with a soft laugh.
"No, Benji. This is serious!"
"No, no. No! Jane, there can't be a hit out on Will. He's...he's...Brandt! A guy who, who, who is guilt ridden if he doesn't hold the door for the person behind him when he comes out of the gas station, for crying out loud! Who on Earth has a hit out on him?"
Silence greeted Jane for so long that she would have thought that agent Dunn had hung up if she hadn't been able to hear Brandt's singing in the background.
"IMF. IMF? I thought you said IMF. This concussion must really be getting the best of me."
"No, Benji. It is the IMF. The man that hit you guys is an agent! We found evidence of the hit on a cell phone that he must of lost in the crash. Listen, we're almost to the hospital. Just stay with Billy Joel until we get there, okay?"
"Ahh...sure!" Benji replied, still trying to process the situation through his concussed brain. "I would say with pleasure, but I'm not really fan of Billy Joel...or Brandt when he's doped up on pain medication."
Jane knew it was just Benji's way of remaining calm, so she just assured him they would be there soon and hung up.
"Whoooo was that, Benji?" Brandt smiled up at him with a dopey grin.
"Uh, that was Jane." He replied as he looked outside the hospital room for anything suspicious. Seeing nothing, he walked back in and sat down next to his friend.
"What did...she have to say?" William blinked owlishly.
"Umm, she uh...she said that um...that when she got here she wanted you to sing We Didn't Start the Fire."
"Ohh. Well, I better get in Only the Good Die Young before she gets here."
Benji grimaced at the irony unbeknownst to Brandt but tried to cover it with a smile. "Sing it quietly." He said as if talking to a child and patting the agent's leg. He wasn't surprised when Brandt began to belt out the tune. He could only sit and sing along as he waited for Ethan and Jane to arrive.
This was eventually going to be a one-shot, but I decided to add more to the end and I ended up making it a multi-chapter story. If you're interested in reading more let me know! Thanks for reading!
P.S. The Billy Joel choice was based on Jeremy Renner singing New York State of Mind on Jimmy Fallon a long time ago, but you can see it on youtube. He is an amazing singer! :D