Hearing Things

by Tiffiny

ATF Alternate Universe

Disclaimer: No rights. No profit. No nothin'.

Warnings: The boys just wouldn't leave me alone until I wrote this down. Hope you all enjoy it. If you hate it, blame Buck. He's the one who made me do it. In the meantime, I'll be hiding behind Mr. Larabee. (The scary one) Feedback is a wonderful thing. It might even lure me out from Chris' shadow. <g>

Buck Wilmington stood just outside the door to Vin Tanner's apartment. His raised fist, poised ready to knock, hovered uncertainly in the air as its owner leaned towards the door frowning intently.

"Whatcha waitin' for, Buck? Christmas?" JD Dunne's voice could be heard quite clearly from his position at the taller man's elbow.

"Sssshhhhh. I heard something in there." Buck now had his ear pressed against the door.

"Do we have ourselves a situation, Mr. Wilmington?" Ezra Standish' s languid voice belied the swiftness of his actions. His gun was out and at the ready before he had completed his sentence.

JD had also drawn his weapon and moved into position at the side of the doorway. "We got you covered."

Buck glanced over at JD and rolled his eyes in exasperation. "Oh, for Pete's sake, JD. You've been watching reruns of NYPD Blue again, haven't you?"

As JD began sputtering in denial, Buck turned to his other side. "Put your toy away, Ezra." he indicated the other man's small derringer. "It ain't that kind of a situation."

"Might I inquire as to the nature of this 'situation' you apparently find so fascinatin'?" Ezra's voice held more than a touch of sarcasm, as he popped the derringer back into its place beneath his sleeve.

"Yeah. What Ezra said." JD sounded a bit grumpy as he also put his weapon back in its holster. He muttered under his breath. "Like Buck should talk. Mr. Magnum PI. At least NYPD Blue is about real cops." JD was a bit sensitive about his TV viewing habits.

"Quiet, you two. Come here and listen to this." Buck had his ear to the door again and a wide grin on his face.

"Isn't that eavesdropping, Buck? I don't think Vin would..." JD's protest was cut short as Buck grabbed his ear and pulled it in the direction of the door.

"Oh, for the love of...Just do it, JD." he ordered, ignoring the younger man's muffled yelp of pain.

"Really, Mr. Wilmington. I fail to see the point in indulging ourselves in such..." Ezra's protest was also cut short as JD let out a squeak of surprise.

"You gotta hear this, Ezra." JD's earlier moral outrage had apparently gone the way of the dodo.

Ezra sighed. "Very well. But if Mr. Tanner should discover us listening, I fully intend on placing the blame squarely upon the two of you."

"Ssshhhh..." was the southerner's only reply. He soon discovered why his comrades were so intent as he heard a familiar voice.

Hold it gently, but with a firm grip." Chris Larabee paused for a moment, then continued. "That's right. Now tell me how it feels." Their team leader's soft voice had a way of wrapping around words and sending shivers down your spine.

"Feels good. Different, but good." Vin Tanner's soft drawl sounded slightly bemused.

"Now what should I do, cowboy?" Vin's question evoked a snort of laughter from the three eavesdroppers.

"You just go ahead and sink yours in the hole right here. Nice and easy." Chris' response caused JD to turn bright red and the other two men to press their ears closer against the door.

"How am I doin?"

"It went in that time. I think you're getting a feel for it."

"I reckon maybe I am. The rest of the team should be here soon. They any good at this?"

"Buck is real good at this. He used to do it all the time when we were younger."

Buck's head shot up in outrage and he backed away from the door. "I don't know what the hell he's talking about." His indignant protest only made Ezra and JD laugh harder.

When the three of them had recovered sufficiently, they again pressed their ears to the door.

"Don't think JD would be much of a challenge. Not enough experience. And Ezra would be too afraid of getting his clothes dirty." Now it was Buck's turn to laugh at the looks of outrage on his friend's faces.

"Well, I'm ready to play again. How about you, Vin."

"Sounds good to me. Should I go first?"

"Yeah. Try doing it a little harder this time. The balls won't break, you know."

At that, the three men outside could contain themselves no longer. They burst into howls of laughter and ran down the hallway, careening around the corner just as the door opened and Vin Tanner appeared.

"I coulda sworn I heard somethin' Chris," he told the older man with a frown.

"Probably just the neighbors. Come back inside and let's play another game before the boys get here."

"All right. Think the boys'll be surprised when they see my new pool table?"

The End