Disclaimer: Just playing. I know I can't keep 'em...damnit!
Thanks to Mog for ATF
Part of the Everyday Collection
Characters: Buck, JD, (Chris)
Summary: Federal Agents dealing with the little everyday things in life.
Walking around the local supermarket, Buck couldn't help but chuckle as he noted his roommate's disgruntled expression.
"I should've guessed."
Buck studied the labeling on a package, feigning innocence. "Huh?"
"You...preparing me a cooked breakfast this morning I should've guessed you were softening me up for something."
Buck shrugged. "We gotta eat, Kid, and as I recall you eat at least half the stuff we buy so suck it up and get to shopping."
JD mumbled something and pushed the cart on ahead. He hated the supermarket.
As they drifted down one aisle, JD picked up a product and smirked to himself. He held it up to Buck. "Here you go 'Tone, Sugar Glow Body Wash for beautiful, radiant skin' wouldn't want your lady friends short-changed, would we?"
JD grabbed another product off the shelf. "Ooh ooh better yet 'Dove Pro-Age, 'cause beauty has no age limit." He chuckled at the expression on Buck's face, failing to watch out when returning the products to the shelves. He yelped at the smack to the back of his head, and turned, rubbing his head as he pouted.
"Oww damnit Buck " JD noticed an older female shopper looking their way with a scowl of disapproval and mumbling something about child cruelty. Dunne's smile was positively wicked, before switching his expression to mock pain.
"Oww Dad, please don't hit me again I'll be good, I promise."
Buck looked at his so-called 'little brother' as if he had two heads. When the female shopper passed by them admonishing Buck and threatening to report him for abuse, the confused brunet smiled, awkwardly. Turning to see the easterner cackling, Buck narrowed his eyes and quickly strode to catch him up. JD yelped when the shopping cart smacked into the back of his legs.
"Oww Jeeze, Buck," he squeaked, rubbing at his jeans to ease the stinging flesh. "Do I have to get you a learner's permit for that thing?"
Buck bobbed his eyebrows. "Oh sorry there squirt or should I say...son? Did I catch you?"
For a moment there was a stand-off, neither man wanting to relent. Finally, JD grabbed the cart and continued shopping, the sooner this was over the better.
Armed with Pringles, Doritos, Jello cups, candy, and ready-to- freeze popsicles, JD staggered back to the cart, which Buck had commandeered, explaining ladies loved to see a man shopping. JD sighed at Buck as he spied the man chatting up one of the shelf- fillers.
"Don't you worry there, bro I got it!"
Dumping his choices, JD waited for a response but nothing was forthcoming. 'Fine, I'll just get on with it' he decided, and headed off to get more.
Several trips later, Buck had finished talking and, smiling to himself, was tucking a piece of paper into his shirt pocket. The grin faded on seeing the accumulating groceries in their cart. He shook his head as he selected some of the items for scrutiny.
`Whipped butter, pizzas, cookies, juice, Pop Tarts how long have I been talking?' he wondered. Buck frowned at one item buried deep in the bottom of the cart.
Buck felt his stomach clench. Was he missing something with his roommate? He smiled as the youth approached with hot wings, milk, and more juice.
"I'm real glad we got us a cart," Dunne said sarcastically, as he dropped his awkwardly stacked bundle into it. "Sure wouldn't have managed without it."
Buck grinned, "Yeah, well you need the exercise. I see you stuck to the list."
JD frowned. "There was a list?"
Buck laughed and draped an arm around the younger man's shoulders. "C'mon let's get finish up and get outta here."
A half-hour later and Buck was at the checkout and scanning the area for his partner. Almost about to give up, he had one last thought and headed for the games section. Sure enough, there was JD sitting cross-legged on the floor, surrounded by electronic games and studying the boxes intently. Buck touched a hand to his stomach. There was that flutter again. Just watching his young friend sitting there like that, like...a teenager in Playstation Heaven, brought out all Buck's paternal instincts, despite the object of his concern being a fully- fledged Federal Officer. He stood there for some time, unwilling to disturb JD who was absorbed in his reading material. Finally, Buck moved toward him.
"Hey you uh, all done here?"
JD slowly raised his head, smiling as he acknowledged the older man. "Oh, sure I was just looking. Are you done, too?"
Buck nodded to the loaded cart, "Yup that should keep us going for oooh a few days."
Laughing, JD got to his feet with a grunt and a small grimace and began to collect up the games. Watching, Buck didn't miss the slight, but obvious difficulty.
"That's alright, sir. I'll do that for you."
A small hand clasped JD's as it attempted to pick up the games. When he straightened, the youth found himself looking into a pair of warm, chocolate-brown eyes.
"Uh no, it's okay Miss I kinda made a mess here, I'll "
"No, really," the store assistant insisted. "I don't mind. I'll probably find where they should be quicker, anyway."
JD smiled, trying hard not to stare at the pretty young brunette in front of him. "Uh do do you work here?" He winced, as did a watching, grinning Buck. "Aw shit, sorry stupid question of course you do "
Buck winked at his housemate and continued on to the checkouts.
The girl smiled. "Actually, I'm only here temporarily I start the final year of my degree in a few months."
He went to extend his hand and realized their hands were still clasped. "Um I'm JD," he smiled widely and was left in no doubt the girl liked what she saw, as did he..
"I'm Beth, I was wondering...would you like to go out for a drink sometime? Oh, uh, I am twenty-one. Are you?"
JD chuckled, "Yeah just." He nodded. "Sure I'd like that. Do you have a cell number?"
She smiled and they both laughed when they had to let go of hands so they could exchange numbers.
By the time JD caught up with Buck, the brunet was moving through the checkout. Buck chuckled at the grin on the youth's face. "You get a number?"
A nod and a grin was the reply.
Buck nodded approvingly, his own grin widening. "That's my boy."
While the news channel played quietly in the background, the roommates were enjoying coffee and cookies in the CDC's kitchen. Hoping his timing was right, Buck pulled out the Advil PM packet.
"Are these for you, Kid?"
JD quickly swallowed a piece of cookie, he'd forgotten about buying them. "Yeah thought I'd give `em a go."
"They looked good on TV."
Buck sighed, "You know what I mean why? Are you in pain? Are you not sleeping?"
Dunne focused on the empty cookie plate, desperately wishing there was another one there to divert attention away from him.
"Drop it, Buck, it's no big deal."
Wilmington grasped JD's hand. "Yes, it is. Now you can talk to me right here, right now, or I'll just pick up the phone and you can talk to Chris."
JD stood, his hand still in Buck's grasp. "Why do you always do that? Why bring Chris into it? It's my business, Buck, I'm entitled to my privacy please, just leave it."
Buck tugged at the hand and JD dropped back into his seat.
"I know you're entitled to your privacy, Kid, but you being in pain? Come on how can I not be concerned?"
JD looked at Buck for the longest time, then sighed. He propped an elbow on the table and rested his head in his hand. Tense fingers slid through his hair, pushing it back from his eyes.
"It's my back okay? It still hurts occasionally from the recent fall and it sometimes stops me from sleeping. It's really no big deal honest, Buck." He looked at the concerned face in front of him. "Really it's only now and again. Usually after a day sitting at my desk."
Remembering the pain JD was in after tumbling down an escalator during a recent bust, Buck stood and pulled the youth up with him.
"What are you doing?"
"Taking you to the hospital."
"NO!" JD tugged and dug his heels in for all he was worth, but made no headway as a determined Wilmington held tight and dragged him through the apartment.
"Damnit Buck no why do you think I haven't said anything? I don't need this, I'm fine!"
"You're fine when the Doc says so come on."
Buck was in the ER waiting room and sitting, waiting for JD to be examined. He smiled at the familiar face that rounded the corner and proceeded to drop down next to him.
"No he's still being examined. He's gonna be mighty pissed at us that you came out here."
Chris shrugged. "I'll risk it."
Buck smiled. He loved how Chris was once again starting to show how much he cared. "Thanks, Pard."
JD looked dismayed when he exited the examination room and spotted Chris sitting next to Buck in the waiting area. Prescription in hand, he approached the seated pair.
Buck stood. "Well?"
"Hi, Chris," JD acknowledged his boss's presence.
"JD." Chris directed his attention to the youth's hand. "Well? I see you have a prescription."
JD nodded. "It's for an anti-inflammatory and a mild sleeping pill, should I need it." He looked at Chris. "I won't need it."
"So," Buck cut in, "No unforeseen damage?"
"Naw, just some fresh swelling around the impact area. I guess it's always been there and I must've aggravated it."
Chris nodded and stood. "Good, let's go get this filled." He took the prescription from JD and headed for his truck. "I'll see you back at the loft," he called back.
The two made their way to Buck's truck. Buck observed the expression on JD's face. Oh boy, he knew that look.
"Chris insisted," he pleaded.
"What is Chris psychic now? Damnit, Buck you called him."
The brunet stopped and stared at the boy. "Okay, I care and I called him, so sue me. You know how Chris is about things like this. Better he comes here now, than chews our asses out tomorrow when we tell him." Buck raised his eyebrows. "You knew we had to tell him."
JD sighed. He couldn't really argue with that. Chris expected honesty from his men, and didn't tolerate attempts to cover up something that could cause an individual, or the team, a problem on the job. After traveling a while, they approached the parking area for their apartment. Both men huffed out a soft laugh when they spotted four vehicles, complete with concerned drivers waiting for them. They were both touched at the interest.
Just as they parked, a black Ram pulled in alongside. JD grinned and stepped out of Buck's Chevy to greet their teammates. He glanced back at Buck, and bobbed his eyebrows.
"Good thing we went shopping."