Warnings: Heidi Humor Fic. Eating and drinking can be hazardous to your health while reading this fic.
Authors Notes: For everyone else that knows exactly what Im talking about here, and cringe on a consistent basis. For Cin, and all the hard work she does behind the scenes.
Okay. The clock says its been five minutes, but I dont believe it. It cant be. Mark that down as a record. Wait, no, its fast 4:56, 4:57, 4:58, 4:59 . . .
Heck. I thought they could do it. Five minutes without someone hitting the wrong button, striking the wrong key, clicking the mouse wrong, or generally screwing up his computer. Well, Im saving what Im working on right now as I answer. "Yeah?"
"On my way." I leave my desk, trot through the office laggings not a good move when Chris screws something up - and look over his shoulder. Hes done it again. How the heck does he manage to do that so often?
"It did it again."
I refrain from rolling my eyes and going with the obvious I see that. I chose the more sedate "Uh-huh", and reset the spreadsheet so it accepts his formulas. "Chris."
"What?" Hes already reading another expense report, and I recognize the form as Ezras.
"Dont hit the delete key in the formula box, okay?"
"Fine. Thanks, JD."
Im leaving because one - Ive been dismissed, and two - I dont want to be around for the yelling session when Chris finds whatever Ezra hid in there.
Glancing around, everyone looks like theyre doing something. Of course, with this group, looks are deceiving. Oh, crud. Bucks working on a report. Okay, Ill get maybe three minutes done before he tries to access the wrong site and the internal system locks his computer. Again. Maybe some preventative measures are called for now. "Buck?"
"Dont try to access those pages again."
"I wont. Ive gotta get this report done." He gives me this wounded look.
"Yeah, right. I know you. Please? The web page has to be done by tomorrow for the Law Department to review."
"Dont worry, and get back to work. I swear, you should be done with that thing by now."
Now I do roll my eyes. The reason Im not done is because when I get to the point where I cant stop, it never fails - someone yells my name. Come on, guys, Nathan, Ezra, and Josiah are just as good as I am, but do you bug them? NO!
I drop back in my chair, and start working on the easy stuff that I can stop at any time. The real meat of the web page Im updating will take my full concentration, and I cant do that with
that happening every few minutes.
"Did you restart?" I quit saying reboot two weeks ago, because Bucks idea of a reboot is to either kick it off the roof, or put his boot on the main unit and give it a nudge.
I yell, "You went to the page again."
"Buck." I wait him out.
Hitting my forehead with my palm, I shake my head, run, and reset Bucks system. Resettings a five-minute process of three restarts and several illegal commands to get around the Bureaus block, and prevent them from realizing Buck did it AGAIN. See, hes the reason we nearly lost Internet access, because he got the system locked in an adult pop-up ring, and it wouldnt stop until it overloaded.
That gave Chris a headache, Buck a pair of ringing ears, and a scathing lecture for me from Chris to figure out how to block Buck from doing that again. I couldnt, but the ATF did. So every time he tries to access the page, his computer freezes. I have less than two minutes from the time he locks it up until Tech Support finds out someone did it again. If they find out, theyll start backtracking, but it takes those slowpokes longer than it takes me to fix his system. Saying I can get to it quick enough. If I get to it within the first two minutes, I can hide him from the main computer, and then unlock his terminal.
"STAY OUT OF THAT SITE!" I whack him in the head and walk away.
I make it four minutes, twenty nine seconds before my names called again. Its Vin. Thats okay.
"Yeah, Vin?" I walk over, squatting down beside him.
"Can I move this paragraph down here, without havin ta retype it?"
"Sure. Thats the cut and paste function." I know that if I can get him to do it himself, hell remember forever, and hell also write down notes after Ive left. I wont get this question again from him, unless he cant read his notes. "Take your mouse and highlight the section you want to move."
"Okay." He did that.
"Go up to the top and click on the scissors."
"Ey, its gone!"
"Not really. Just hidden for now. Now, put your cursor where you want it, and make sure thats right where you want the paragraph to go."
"Reckon here works."
"See the clipboard?"
"Looks like a suitcase."
"Your choice. Click on that."
"There she goes. Thanks, JD."
"Anytime, Vin." I walk back to my desk, listening to him scribbling down how to do that.
I rub the back of my neck, looking to see where the next question will come from. Bucks actually typing his report. Wow. Josiah and Nathan are working quietly, and sos Vin. Ezras using his laptop because he swears the computers here are cursed and conspiring against him.
And theres a yell. I cringe.
Hey, its not me!
"GET IN HERE!"
Chris isnt happy, but Ezra carries himself into the office full of dignity. The door slams. Uh-oh. A closed door means its gonna be a good dust up over something on the expense report that Chris doesnt want the rest of us to hear.
Well, Im going back to work. I dont even look at the clock; I just keep working. Eventually, Ezra comes out, but it stays quiet. Hey, its time to go home. They went a whole hour without a question. That may be a record.
"Kid? Quitting time."
"Yeah, I know, Buck. Im staying for a bit."
"The web page?"
"Want me to stick around?"
I smile up at him. "No, thats okay."
"Call me if you want a package."
Once everyones gone, I really get to work. See, the web page was giving me all kinds of fits. First I had to take down the firewall, which didnt make sense, because I didnt have to take it down before, but now I do. Then I had to download everything again, and upload it back into the site. Once I changed everything I needed to, I had to check every link to make sure they all worked. Finally its all ready to go, but now it wont upgrade.
I cussed. Long, loud, and fluently, because its nearly six oclock, Im fighting this system, and Im just tired of dealing with computers.
My head falls into the keyboard. Chris. "What?"
"You all right, son?" He lays a comforting hand on my shoulder.
"The web page wont work right, and its due tomorrow. Im sorry, Chris."
"Thats okay. I got you another week."
"Huh?" My head snaps up so fast to look at him I think I gave myself whiplash. His eyes look almost kind. They twinkle a bit, too.
"Did you think I didnt notice you work with a perpetual cringe?"
"Yeah. Youre waiting for the next person to do something to the computers and yell for your help. I noticed whenever you have big projects due, thats when everyone gets on the computers and youre helping them more than youre doing your job."
"Its okay." I half-shrug. "Im the computer guy. Its my function."
Chris gives me a gentle smile. "Youre also a highly trained Agent that shouldnt be babysitting grown men who are in various stages of terror about using new technology. Figure your back hurts every night when you go home from bunching your muscles like that."
"Howd ya know?"
He gives me this look like its a no-brainer. "Because, JD, I know my team. And starting next week, six of us are going to a computer class hosted at the college. Were going to improve our computer skills, so you dont have to do all these late nights."
"Which means no more cringing."
"I can deal with that. Thanks, Chris."
"Save your thanks for after we come back from class. Well know just enough to be dangerous." He pats my shoulder affectionately.
"Is a massage a legitimate business expense?"
He laughs as he walks away from me. "According to Ezra it is."