Caving With Chris

by Purple Lacey

Ninth story in the Angel Girl series.

Standard disclaimers apply.

This is just a snippet that popped into my head and wouldn´t go away. Don´t expect anything in the way of plot.

Thanks to MOG for creating the ATF universe and allowing us to play in it.

Chris wanted to run his fingers through his hair in frustration. The fact that he couldn´t just added to his frustration level. How in the world had he gotten himself into this mess? He felt like a complete fool. He would never be able to live this down. It was true what they said; no good deed ever goes unpunished. That was what had started this whole fiasco, his desire to help out his friend. He should have had his head examined. He knew better, but must have suffered from temporary insanity. That´s the only explanation for how he found himself dressed as a clown, leading a pony around the backyard of Buck Wilmington´s home giving pony rides to a group of screaming two year olds.

When he had offered to help Buck with Angela´s second birthday party he had visions of helping decorate or clean up afterward. He hadn´t minded when Buck had asked him to take charge of the pony rides. Horses were something he was familiar with and comfortable around. It wasn´t until he had shown up on Buck´s doorstep that he had found out he was supposed to do it dressed as a clown. He really owed Buck for that one, and payback was definitely going to be as much of a b***h as he could make it. He had been set up all the way around. Buck had not only failed to inform him of the costume requirements, but had timed the telling for when Chris was holding Angela. His emphatic, “No clowns! No way!” was met with a stricken look in the child´s eyes, and when she had said, “No cwowns?” in that disappointed little voice he had caved right away. That no good son of a b***h Wilmington had known he wouldn´t be able to say no to Angel when she had that look on her face, damn him! So here he was, clown suit, face paint, multicolored wig, and red foam nose in place. Thank God he had been able to talk Angela out of the floppy shoes. That would have been the last straw.

His head was starting to ache from the childish squeals ringing in his ears. He kept reminding himself that he couldn´t just pull his gun and start shooting, although the image of Buck with a target painted on his forehead had sustained him for the last half hour. Luckily for all concerned, the party was winding down as parents rounded up their toddlers and said their goodbyes.

Chris gratefully handed the reigns over to the rental pony´s owner and hurried inside to remove his costume. He stopped in Buck´s den and poured himself a large whiskey from his friend´s liquor cabinet. He downed it in one gulp, set the glass down on the cabinet, and continued upstairs to the guest bathroom where he had left his clothes.

Chris walked into the bathroom and put his hands on the sink, leaning forward to glare at his reflection in the mirror. “You were a SEAL, for Pete´s sake,” he thought to himself. “You have commanded men in life or death situations and never flinched. You have intimidated hardened felons into babbling their confessions with nothing more than a glare. You command the respect of the whole ATF, so how did you let one little girl put you in this situation? You´re supposed to be a battle-hardened warrior, and look at you now; a marshmallow. Where is your self-respect, hmmm? What´s so hard about saying the word no? You tell those hardheaded idiots you work with no everyday and make them listen. You´ve even gone toe to toe with Travis and refused to back down. So, why can´t you say no when that little imp asks you something? ” Chris shook his head at his reflection. “That is just pathetic.”

At that moment, Angela ran into the bathroom and grabbed Chris around his knees. Chris bent down and lifted the child into his arms.

“ ‘ou da bestest cwown ever, Unca C´is,” Angela said, reaching out to squeeze the foam rubber nose he still wore with a giggle. “T´ank ‘ou for commin´ to my pahty!” Angela wrapped her arms around his neck and gave him a big kiss on his red painted lips.

“You´re welcome, Angel. Happy Birthday,” Chris said and hugged her back.

Chris looked at the joy and happiness beaming at him from the sparkling blue eyes of their little Angel, and knew he had helped to put it there. “Okay, so I´m a marshmallow where this child is concerned,” he thought, “I can live with that.”

The End

Author´s Note: So what´d you think?
Feedback is welcomed.