A/N: Thanks to those who reviewed, and, as promised, here is the next chapter :) Hope you enjoy. I'm sorry it took me so long, my USB had an unsceduled clearout.
Disclaimer: If I could trade my rabbit for the rights to Numb3rs, I probably would...
David was already by Don's side, helping him sit up and calling 911 by the time Colby had removed both weapons from the body of Dana Green.
Don was assisiting he was fine, holding a bloodied hand over a wound in his arm, the other bullets having buried themselves in his vest.
"It's just a flesh wound, seriously," Don was saying, getting to his feet and rolling his shoulder with a grimace. "She dead?"
He motioned with his head to Green, even though he already knew the answer.
Colby nodded, keeping his eyes everywhere but the body.
"Alright, Colby, stay here, we'll send the coroner up to get her. David grab her guns, lets go," Don was already headed down the firescape his hand still held on his arm.
Once they reached the bottom of the stairs, Megan and a pair of paramedics jogged over to Don and David, who nodded and took the guns over to the LAPD officers.
"I'm fine," Don shrugged the female paramedics hand off his his shoulder as he walked himself over to the back of the waiting ambulance.
Megan smirked as she walked back to the car she had arrived in, headed back to the offices where she would, no doubt, run into Charlie and be hit with a barrage of questions regarding Don's whereabouts. She shook her head as she watched Don sigh and resign himself to being poked and prodded by the paramedics.
"How're you doing Don?" Colby asked, walking over as the coroner wheeled the body over to another vehicle waiting to take him, and the body, to the morgue.
"I'm fine, just a flesh-wound, like I said," Don told him, standing, thanking the paramedics and pulling his shirt back on. "Come on, lets get back."
Colby didn't miss the suppressed grimace as Don buttoned up his shirt and pulled a blue FBI jacket on. He also didn't miss the tightness in Don's face as he slipped into the passenger seat of the car, which was unusual in itself, and began to pull his seat belt around himself.
But Don didn't miss the covert glances he kept getting as Colby drove the car back to the offices, but he couldn't say he didn't feel greatful. His team really cared what happened to him and that was fine with him. Now if only Megan hadn't told Charlie he should be able to keep it from him...
"Hey," Charlie said as Megan walked in, carrying a file.
"Hey, Don's just behind me," she told him, gesturing with her head towards the door while opening the file.
"You got them?" Charlie inquired, following Megan back to the war room.
"We got her, Charlie," Megan sighed, looking up as Don walked in behind them.
"Charlie, I'm taking you home," Don said picking up a few of Charlie's papers and making for the door again, a slight grimace on his face as he bent his arm and took a deep breath.
Charlie didn't notice, however, as he grabbed rolled up maps and graphs, shoving his laptop into a bag.
Charlie muttered a quick 'bye' to the team as he followed Don down to his car.
"Dad said he'd make steak so I thought I'd stay overnight," Don told him, pulling the car out of the car park and onto the road.
"Okay," Charlie had his head bowed and was scribbling in a notepad when Don's eyes darted across at Charlie's mumbled reply.
"So, you guys went to that new italian place downtown last week didn't you?" Don asked, trying to make conversation.
"Mmhmm," Charlie mumbled another reply and Don sighed, giving up on conversation and letting his shoulders relax, wincing as it pulled the stitches in his arm.
"Hey chuck, we're here," Don said, earning himself a glare from Charlie. He smirked and got out of the car, grabbing the papers he had carried to the car.
"Hey dad," Charlie said, smiling at Alan as he opened the door, finding him sat on the couch with a newspaper.
"Boys, the food isn't ready yet, I thought you'd be home later than this," Alan admitted, moving to stand up.
"I think I'm gonna go get changed," Don said, retreating to his childhood bedroom to change into some jeans and a T-shirt.
"Hey, Don, dad sent me to-" Charlie froze in the doorway.
Don hadn't quite pulled his t-shirt on when Charlie had come in, so he was practically displaying the whirlwind of colours across his chest and the bandage around his upper arm.
"Charlie-" he started, but the words just stopped after that.
Charlie remained stood in the doorway, his face slightly pale and his mouth closed tightly and he appeared to be swallowing.
"Charlie, I didn't want to worry you, I-"
"Dad wants you to come down and eat," Charlie interupted, shaking his head slightly as Don pulled the T-shirt down over the bruising and pulled a jacket over the bandage.
"Right," Don rubbed his brow. "I'll be right down."
Charlie left quickly, walking down the stairs and taking his seat at the table.
"Donny, before you sit down will you just grab me the pepper?" Alan asked, pointing to the cupboard where the pepper was housed.
Don nodded and grabbed the pepper, pulling his chair out and sitting down.
"Charlie tells me you caught the donwtown sniper," Alan said, striking up a conversation.
"Yeah, she's not gonna be shooting anybody any time soon," Don said, filling his mouth with food. "Mmm, this is good."
"Don't talk with your mouth full," Alan scolded, watching Don fill his mouth again.
"Sorry," Don said after swallowing his food. "We wouldn't have been able to get her without Charlie's maths."
Alan turned to Charlie with a smile, expecting to see him looking equally as happy.
Charlie looked up and smiled, though Don could see it was faked.
"You know I'm really not hungry right now, I'll heat it up later," Charlie told them, coughing and getting up, leaving the elder two Eppes' to eat their food in contemplative silence.
Don found Charlie scribbling on his chalk boards in the garage when they had finished eating and Charlie froze as he entered.
"Hey Charlie," Don sighed.
"You were hurt because of my findings," Charlie mumbled quietly.
"No Charlie," Don told him, leaning on the table that had been put in the middle of the garage. "I got hurt because of Dana Green. She shot the gun not you, you just did what you do most days, give me you're much appreciated findings."
"Charlie, this is not your fault," Don left no room for argument with his tone.
"Are you okay?" Charlie asked, motioning with his hand to Don's arm.
"Yeah, I'm fine," Don smiled and this time so did Charlie.
"Thats good," he said, turning back to his chalk board.
"You know what I said at the table was true. We really couldn't have found Green without you," Don told him, a serious look on his face.
"Sure you could, its what you guys do," Charlie told him turning around again.
"Maybe but it would have taken us much longer and more innocent people would have died," he said, watching Charlie shift from foot to foot.
A few hours later saw Don and Charlie aruing about something neither of htem could actually remember, Charlie still winning however.
"Chuck, don't make me go get the scrabble board out," Don warned, pointing behind him as he laughed and started walking backwards.
"I...I... I already... told dad... th-theres pieces missing!" Charlie stuttered as Don grinned.
Yepp. Things were definitly looking up.