There's No Such Thing As A Free Ride

A "missing scenes" interlude from Free Ride

An NCIS:LA fanfiction


Maxie Kay

After watching the 2012 Christmas episode, I couldn't help thinking there was something missing. And thus this story was born… Think of it as my early Christmas present to you all.

Now, this story is rather different from my usual style, in fact it goes hand in hand with my story Distinguishing Features, and also features the long-awaited return of crack-fic plot bunny. In other words: expect complete insanity!

"A clipboard? Really?" Deeks looked at the offending article in considerable disgust. "My entire disguise consists of a lousy clipboard?" He sent a disgusted look in the direction of Kensi and Sam. "How come they get to dress up in uniform and I get a frigging clip-board?"

It really didn't seem fair. Not fair at all… Although looking at Kensi in that incredibly tight uniform was reward in itself. Does military attire normally come in extra small and skin-tight? he wondered and then decided just to enjoy the view, which was, after all, the entire point of that particular costume.

"Don't pout," Sam advised.

"I'm not pouting. It's just the way my lips work, isn't it Kensi?"

Kensi was slightly preoccupied in making sure she didn't breathe too deeply and thus pop all the buttons on her shirt, which was at least two sizes too small. Maybe three. The material was stretched to maximum capacity, that was for sure. And why on earth had she chosen today of all days to wear a push-up leopard-print bra in shades of fuschia and black? Consequently, she was not exactly paying attention to her partner and only half-heard his question.

"Your lips work just fine, Deeks," she replied automatically.

Sam tried his very best not to choke, mainly because he still hadn't recovered from the last time he did that and Callen had insisted on giving him mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Really, it was high time Callen found himself a girlfriend. Sam might be willing to share a lot of his life with his partner, but he sure as hell wasn't going to share his wife too. That was a step too far.

"I don't have a uniform either," Callen pointed out.

Deeks didn't actually care about that and he wasn't about to let go of this any time soon. "I'd look great in a uniform. Really great. I've got the legs for those tight pants." It was well-established that modesty was one of his characteristics.

"You've got the butt too." Kensi just couldn't help herself: the lack of oxygen getting to her brain was having a serious effect on her cognitive processes. How come she was always the one squeezed into revealing outfits when demographics demonstrated the show had as many female viewers as it did males?

Callen decided it was time to inject a little sanity into the proceedings. "I'm sure Shane has a good reason," he said smoothly, and in the manner of one who knows he has top billing on the show.

I'll bet he does, Kensi thought sourly. It all made sense, because the Great Shane was male. And Australian. She knew exactly why she was the only one who needed a shoehorn to get into her jeans.

"Joint top billing," Sam reminded him.

He would never dare refer to The Creator in such a familiar fashion. He knew his place, which was why he'd been rewarded with a hot wife, while Callen had… that was right, Callen had no-one. Secretly, that pleased Sam. That was what happened when you thought you were the star of the show and took liberties with the name of The Creator. The result was that Callen didn't even get to cast longing looks at Kensi any more, not since Deeks had appeared on the scene. And now Nell was off-limits too. There was no way a new major character was going to be brought in as a love interest for Callen, for reason of pure economics: The Creator had earmarked all available money for explosions. "The bigger the better" seemed to be the motto around the set, which suited Sam fine, because he was not only the tallest member of the team, he also had the biggest muscles. Heck, even his muscles had muscles. So that only left Hetty. Which was… interesting, Sam thought.

"There is a very good reason for Mr Brennan's decisions." Hetty strode forward and effortlessly dominated the scene, in the way that Oscar winners tend to do.

"It's Deeks' hair, isn't it?" Kensi said, wondering if wardrobe possibly had a shirt that wasn't going to asphyxiate her.

"What's wrong with my hair?"

"Absolutely nothing, Mr Deeks. God knows, I need at least one male member of my team who is not follically challenged. No, The Creator knows better than to put you in tight fitting clothing."

Deeks looked mortally offended. Kensi just wished The Creator exercised similar powers when it came to her costumes.

"What's wrong with my body?" he asked plaintively.

"Nothing," Kensi reassured him and then ran her hands over his biceps, having given up all attempts at restraining herself. "Absolutely nothing at all." Two of her buttons flew off with considerable force as she said this, ruining a camera lens and exposing her bra to the world. Deeks found that the day had suddenly got a whole lot better and that the focus of his concentration had suddenly shifted.

Leopard-skin? Really? I wonder if that's part of a matching set?

"And that, my dear Mr Deeks, is the problem. You remember that episode where you went surfing?"

"I wore a wetsuit." Deeks managed to drag his mind away from the enticing subject of Kensi's underwear, but only for a second. I wonder if she's wearing a thong? Certainly, there were no sign of any VPL. He knew, because he'd looked.

Hetty smiled at the memory. "Indeed you did. I remember it well."

The female members of the production crew all nodded in agreement. At least half of the male members did the same.

"So? What's the problem?"

"The problem is that there is no problem. No problem at all with your body. And yet curiously enough, that is the problem." Hetty often had enigmatic lines to deliver, ones that sounded good and yet did not actually make any sense. Nevertheless, she delivered the speech with her normal aplomb.

Callen could feel his brain beginning to melt. He wished more than anything that Deeks would move over so he could get a good look at Kensi too. How come I get a male partner? A bald male partner, who is taller than me, rather than a hot brunette with interesting taste in underwear?

Sam tended to favour tighty-whities and they didn't do a thing for Callen. He was able to conveniently ignore the fact that Kensi was taller than him too.

Hetty continued in the manner of one who is accustomed to commercial breaks ruining the dramatic flow of a scene. "You had rather an effect when you appeared in that wet-suit. People simply haven't been able to stop talking about it or thinking about it, far less re-watching those scenes. In slow motion. Over and over again." She spoke from personal experience. Thank God technology has moved on from tapes, because mine would be worn out by now.

"Really?" Deeks looked absurdly pleased with himself.

"Really," Kensi assured him, in heartfelt tones.

"Excuse me?" Callen felt Hetty was forgetting something. "I wore a wetsuit on the show. Twice."

"Did you really?" Somehow that had slipped from Hetty's mind. "How very nice for you. Nevertheless, CBS has been inundated with requests that we see a lot more of Mr Deeks, if you know what I mean."

Kensi knew exactly what she meant. There was a lot of Deeks to see, after all.

"I bet Kensi would like to see more of Deeks too," Sam said slyly.

"She was going to. Up at Tahoe."

Deeks sighed at the thought: a cabin in Tahoe, with the possibility of being snowed in. Perfecto. It wouldn't be at all difficult to arrange for Kensi's mother to have a small accident that prevented her from travelling up there with them. Nothing major, of course. Or maybe it would turn out that she was allergic to pine needles? But of course, all that was ruined now. Typical. There was delayed gratification and then there was cruelty to dumb animals. Not to mention audiences.

"Tahoe." The words escaped Kensi's lips in a sigh. It was much easier to breath now that her blouse was unbuttoned all the way down. She had to give it to Deeks, he really was very nimble fingered.

Tahoe. That seems awfully familiar. The minute Deeks mentioned a cabin in the woods, along with a hot tub and skiing, it was like all these bells started to chime in my head. I'm sure I remember being in Tahoe with Deeks. In fact, I'm certain I remember being in Tahoe, in a hot tub – with Deeks. Only there's just one problem: I've never been to Tahoe. So how come I remember it all so clearly? Especially the sex…

And then it came to her – that all happened in a story, called Stormy Weather, where she and Deeks went to Tahoe and stayed in a cabin with a hot tub and went skiing and tobogganing. Of course, they did a whole lot more too, because the story that went further than the show ever dared to. It was looking an awful lot like someone in the production team read fan-fiction and Kensi wondered if this meant she and Deeks were finally going to be allowed to get their thing together. She hoped so.

"I read a story where we went to Tahoe," she said slowly.

Deeks dragged his eyes up to meet hers. "Me too."

"We had an amazing time there." I remember dancing and you lying naked in the hot tub as the snow fell and then we were making love on a fur rug in the firelight. How come these things never happen in the show?

"Oh, it was amazing alright. Right up to the point where I got maimed," Deeks responded dryly. "Why do some writers like maiming me so much?"

Hetty shook her head. "I'm afraid that takes us back to your body, Mr Deeks. You do look rather fine, wearing bandages and nothing else. Very fine indeed."

For a moment, Deeks wondered how she knew he wasn't wearing anything else but bandages in the hospital, but then he decided it was probably safest not to ask. Safest if he wanted to stay sane, that was. Why did they have to write Hetty as all-seeing? It wasn't fair. In fact, it probably amounted to sexual harassment. And if anyone was going to be harassing him sexually, then it had better be Kensi.

"You can look, but don't touch. Okay, Hetty?" Kensi had no such scruples about putting her boss firmly in her place. Deeks was her partner, after all, and that meant she had first dibs on him and his body. It was one thing for Hetty to supervise Callen getting into an outfit she had chosen, but quite another for her to interfere with Deeks. Especially if he was naked at the time.

"I love it when Kensi's bossy," Deeks confided to Callen. "It shows how much she cares."

Kensi flicked through the script and was a little miffed to discover that yet another opportunity to maim Deeks nicely had been missed, along with the corresponding chance for her to show just how much she really did care. After all, what could be more seasonal than red blood and Deeks swathed in white bandages, looking like some delectable Christmas present just waiting to be unwrapped? Really, some people didn't know an ideal opportunity when it was handed to them on a plate.

"Maybe it's time to get some fresh blood in on the writing front?" she suggested.

Callen was firmly in agreement with that. He was all in favour of a writer who would get him some action – and not the sort that meant haring around after miscreants. No, some romantic action was long overdue, because all sorts of people were talking about his "bromance" with Sam, and that wasn't right. Was it?

"Yeah, that way they won't write an entire episode without me again," Deeks said sourly: he was still smarting over that.

"Don't worry, that's not about to happen."

Hetty was sure about that. She'd seen the backlash that little experiment had produced after all. To say the fans had not been happy was an understatement. As a result of the outcry The Creator had hired two new bodyguards, just in case. That meant he had less money to spend on explosions, which in turn made him very unhappy indeed. Shane liked explosions: he liked them a lot and had been rather put out when the Navy were so unreasonable about blowing up an aircraft carrier. Had they no idea how good that would have looked on-screen? Some people had all the artistic sensibilities of a warthog. In a huff, The Creator decreed there would be no explosions at all this Christmas – apart from the snog Nell planted on Eric, of course.

"And anyway, they do write in a small maim for you," Hetty added, patting his hand consolingly. She was as partial to maimed Deeks as the next red-blooded woman after all.

"Small? It's practically miniscule." Kensi had just reached that part of the script and she was not impressed. "First Deeks is knocked out, then he goes missing, so that I'm doing my 'frantic with worry about my partner but trying not to let anybody see how much I care' bit – and then what? Nothing."

"Not nothing. In fact, we cut to me and Sam. The stars of the show," Callen reminded her.

Kensi ignored him. Surely they all had equal billing? "Just like I said: nothing happens."

"I don't actually mind not being maimed," Deeks said, but nobody was listening.

"You were unconscious, bound and gagged. And they cut away!" Kensi was still struggling with the injustice of it all. She could have rocked that scene. That was a golden opportunity for a really touching moment between partners. Touching in both the emotional and physical sense, obviously.

A smile eased its way languorously across Hetty's face. "It seems that, unlike most of the general population, none of the crew have indulged themselves in the latest genre of fiction to hit the best-seller lists. Otherwise they would have extended that scene somewhat."

"Fifty Shades of Deeks?" Sam picked up the reference immediately. "That could work."

"Oh, it does. Believe me." Just to demonstrate the point, Kensi grabbed Deeks and dragged him off-stage. "We might be gone for some time," she announced happily.

Things could be worse, after all. According to the script they were going to be stranded on an aircraft carrier for two days (and two nights) with nothing much to do. Well, Kensi was sure she could find some way to pass the time. And if they ever did make it to that cabin in Tahoe, then they could just take up where they left off.

I'm not taking my mom with us though. No way.

Callen couldn't help feeling that someone somewhere had got their priorities all wrong: Sam was flying home to his hot wife; Nell had snogged Eric's socks off underneath the mistletoe and it was a pretty fair bet Kensi and Deeks were not going to be whiling away the hours with a nice game of Monopoly. Everyone was neatly paired off except him. And Hetty, of course. Giving the matter careful consideration, Callen decided he really didn't like the way she was looking at him.

"Needs must, when the devil drives, Mr Callen," Hetty said sweetly and extended her hand. Well, it was Christmas and she'd been a good girl all year. Now it was time to let her hair down and have a little fun. One way or another, there were going to be explosions on the set this year. "And cheer up - worse things happen at sea, after all."

Did they really? Callen wasn't quite so sure about that. And then he remembered there was no such thing as an entirely free ride. Well, if that was the case, then somebody was definitely going to pay for this. He was going to make sure of that - even if he had to maim Deeks himself.


Merry Christmas, everyone!

And yes – in my story Stormy Weather, Kensi and Deeks really do go to a cabin in Tahoe (complete with a hot tub) and then go skiing and tobogganing! They do a whole lot more too… Anyway, I couldn't resist writing this piece and I had great fun doing so. I hope you enjoyed reading it too.