Okay, first thing I'm going to do when I see the kid is strangle him. I don't care if Simon is here to witness it. Hell, instead of arresting me he'd probably offer to help. I mean where does the kid get off pulling this kind of shit again? I will never understand what goes on in that head of his.
Speaking of heads, like my hairline isn't receding enough as it is? God, he goes out of his way to do things to speed up the process. I swear, thanks to him, in another couple of years there ain't gonna be anything left up there.
It's revenge that's what it is. Every since he had to cut off his hair for the academy, he's been doing stuff to piss me off and stress me out. I mean fine, I know he's ticked about the hair thing; but I mean come on already, hit me, yell at me, cuss me out. Enough with doing these little things that he knows annoy the hell out of me.
I mean, how hard is it to pick your wet towels up off the bathroom floor. And let's talk about those algae shakes the kid still insists on making every morning. Okay, after four years I've gotten used to the smell. At least as used to it as I'm going to get. Thank God I can dial it down. But does he have to leave the dirty blender sitting on the counter all day. Nothing beats coming home at night and getting hit in the face with that stench as soon as I walk through the door.
All right, I know I shouldn't be complaining. Sandburg sacrificed a lot for me. A whole lot. It still amazes me what the kid did for me. Especially after all the shit I've put him through over the years. So, I've been cutting him some slack. I mean how many other guys would bring the kid lunch in the afternoons so he doesn't have to eat the food in the academy's cafeteria. I mean I was there. Even after all these years, I still remember it. When I was in the
Rangers, I learned the most effective and painful ways to torture a person; and none of it comes anywhere close to what a person goes through after eating that food.
God, what is taking so long? I hate waiting. I would try to focus in with my hearing. Just to check things out. But, lately my senses have been screwed up. Sandburg seems to think I have some repressed guilt about the whole dissertation thing. Yeah, like I didn't know that already. I've been living with myself for close to forty years now. Does he really think I need him to tell me that I'm slightly nuts?
I mean, I know that any sane person wouldn't do half the shit that I do. But hell, the kid is usually right there beside me when I'm doing it so what does that say about him? And the kid gets mixed up in some pretty outrageous situations all on his own. Does the name Iris ring any bells? At least when I go nuts over a woman I can blame it on the pheromones.
And why does everyone here keep staring at me? You'd think they'd never seen anyone pace before. Okay, maybe the growling is a little bit much but I'm majorily pissed off right now, as my partner would say. So, excuse the hell out of me if I need a way to vent some frustration. It beats putting a hole in the wall. Believe me, I've thought about it. Only problem is, I couldn't decide whether to use my fist or my head.
I blame it on the kid. Before he came along, I was perfectly happy to keep all of this shit bottled up. Now after years of his 'Come on man, tell me what you're feeling. Let it out, Jim' crap, it's like I can't keep this stuff inside me anymore. Tell you the truth, sometimes I don't know which is worse. Keeping it bottled up or not being able to keep it bottled up anymore.
Before he came along, I was a cold, unfeeling son of a bitch. There are times when I curse the kid for making me change. Times like when we pulled his lifeless body out of that fountain. I've never been so scared before in my entire life, not even when the helicopter went down in Peru. God, I don't think I could go through losing the kid for real. If it ever did happen, that would be the day I'd pick up my gun and eat a bullet. No way would I be able to deal with that kind of pain.
And that totally pisses me off. Knowing that despite all my defenses, the kid somehow managed to weasel his way into my heart. And then he goes and does something incredibly stupid like this. It's like he does this stuff just to see if I care what happens to him. How stupid can you be? Of course, I care what happens to him. But it's not like I can let him know that. I'm Jim Ellison, ex-covert op, ex-Army Ranger and current Major Crimes police detective.
I don't do that nurturing crap.
Hell, after Brad Ventriss' goons attacked the kid, I just helped him up and brushed him off. Sure, I wanted to rush him to the nearest emergency room. But was I going to do that? No. I may be nuts but I'm not that nuts. Blair would have kicked my ass up one side Prospect Ave. and down the other.
Blair? The kid's name should be Sybil. One minute he's pissed because I act like I don't care, and the next he's pissed because I act like I do. All I can think is 'Make up your mind, Kid.'
Shit, what are they doing back there? Would it kill one of those assholes to get their ass out here and tell me what the fuck is going on? I swear, in about two more minutes I'm going back there to see for myself. No more of this 'Just have a seat, sir, and someone will be with you in a moment' bull. Last time I checked a moment wasn't fifty freaking minutes long. Don't these idiots realize it's my partner back there?
Whoa, I gotta have a seat. I think it just finally hit me. The kid's going to be my full-fledged, official partner now. No more telling him to stay in the truck. Not like he ever did before. But at least then I could pretend that he would listen to me. Now, I'm not even going to have that. Dam, now I'm not even going to have the comfort of the illusion that the kid would stay out of harm's way.
Gee, illusion or delusion which one was that again? I'd be fine with either one. Is a little delusion too much to ask for? There are some things I would be perfectly happy not knowing. Like knowing that the kid's going to be carrying a gun now. A gun that he would do anything to avoid using. I mean I know the kid's a fast talker. But, even he can't out talk a bullet.
Oh man, I think I'm going to be sick now. That's it Ellison, bend over and put your head between your knees. Deep breaths now. God, here comes Simon. I swear if he so much as touches me, Captain or not, he's going down. I can't deal with anyone right now. Think, Ellison. Right, the glare. Doesn't work on the kid anymore but maybe it'll work on Banks.
All right, I still got it. One look at the glare and Simon backed off. That's right, Sir. You do not want to get me any more pissed off than I already am. And you might just want to keep the handcuffs ready. Cause if someone doesn't come out here pretty fucking soon I'm going to start doing some damage. Starting with that woman at the admitting desk. She hasn't taken her eyes off of me since I got here. What is so interesting about me?
Oh, that's right. I've just been stalking around the room for about an hour now. She probably thinks I'm gonna go psycho and start trashing the place. Well, I tell you what lady that's a very real possibility.
Shit, I can't sit still. Back to pacing again. Not like you can do a very good job of it in here. Take five steps and then you have to go around the stupid potted plant sitting here in the middle of the aisle. Exactly how many times have I stubbed my toe on it now? Twenty? Thirty? One more time and I'm going to chuck the fucking thing out the front doors.
And exactly why are these people letting their kids crawl around on the floor? Don't they have any idea how dirty it is down there? Not to mention how I'm going to have to listen to them bitch if I accidentally step on one of the little rug rats.
Rug rats. Shit. I still can't believe Sandburg has to watch Saturday morning cartoons. Even more amazing, he's got me watching them with him. I can't believe the kid thinks that Batman could whoop Spiderman's ass? Well, that may be so, but Superman would wipe the floor with both of them. Pink and the Brain ain't half bad though. And I always love it when the kid laughs at Ren & Stimpy and milk comes out of his nose. Sometimes it makes a mess on the couch, though.
God, it's been sixty-three minutes since I got here. Where the fuck is the doctor? Wait, here comes someone now.
"Are you here for Blair Sandburg?" the doctor asks.
When I don't respond, Simon looks at me for a second and then answers the guy. I know he's wondering why I don't say anything. But, I swear if I open my mouth right now I'm just gonna shove the doctor up against the wall and tear him a new one for making me wait so long. Yeah, patience is definitely one of my virtues.
Finally, I'm being taken back to see the kid. Simon's coming with me, mainly because he's concerned about the kid too. But, I also know he wants to try and keep me in line. Yeah, take your best-shot, Sir. Only one who has been able to do that is the kid, my partner, and now I'm finally going to be able to see him.
I walk into the room and he's sitting there on the gurney, his legs dangling over the side with his feet swinging back and forth. He's got a huge grin on his face and that mischievous look in his eyes. Part of me wants to walk over, grab his arms and shake some sense into him. The other part wants to take him home and start to mother hen him. Yeah right. The kid would be pissed no matter which I did.
The kid looks up and sees me. He knows I'm severely pissed right now. So, he does what he always does in a situation like this. He holds up his left arm that is now sporting a blue cast and says, "So, man, tell me the truth. Think it brings out the color of my eyes?"
What could I say to that?
Grinning, I shake my head and reply, "Only you could have managed to pull off something like this, Chief."
Batting those blue eyes of his and putting on his best 'Who me?' expression he says "I don't have any idea what you're talking about, Jim. This could have happened to anyone."
"Yeah right, Sandburg," I answer. "Anyone could just happen to be in a Wonderburger that ends up being robbed. Anyone could then think to distract the robber by throwing a milkshake in his face. Anyone could then just happen to slip on a wet spot created by said milkshake. Anyone could then collide with the robber sending the both of you crashing into the salad bar that, by the way, knocked him unconscious and broke your arm when you banged it against the sneeze guard. Yep, that could happen to anyone all right. As long as their name is Sandburg, that is."
"You're just pissed because you missed out on getting your double cheeseburger," he retorts.
"Well, at least you got your salad," I say as I pluck a piece of lettuce out from behind his ear. "And from now on, Chief, you're staying home and doing the laundry while I go out for dinner."
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