Terror and Tenderness ( ... In the Night)
Disclaimer: I do not own, nor did I create, any of the A-team characters (main or support) nor do I own, nor did I create, any of the episodes. That credit is due to Stephen J. Cannell and his associates. Any familiar catch phrases also belong to the Cannell team.
Spoiler Alert: None needed for this piece.
Author's Notes: I started out to write the third installment to my "... In the Night" line. I was developing two separate pieces at the same time to see which I thought was the best fit. Then it dawned on me that they'd work well together as a long story. So I combined them. This is the end result I hope you enjoy where I took it
Summary: Face starts to act on feelings he doesn't realize he has.
Lunch Date: by LAGC
Face wasn't sure where the idea had come from but he went with it nonetheless. Now there he was standing just outside her office. She didn't know he was coming - since the impetuous idea had been to pop in and ask her to grab lunch. The Team hadn't seen her in nearly three weeks. The last mission was too seedy and truly had no justifications to drag her into the danger zone with them. "I guess I just want to touch base with her, to let her know we are all safe and sound and back around." Face had rationalized to himself.
He had stopped just outside her office door when he heard her speaking to some one. It was a male voice he didn't recognize. Judging by the tone, this guy was a colleague and they were discussing a recent staff meeting.
"Yes, I think the meeting went as well as they usually go, Jim."
"I was just grateful that no new and improved policies were forced upon us." Jim replied.
"Yes that's always a good thing. As you can tell by my desk, I already have enough to handle."
There was a pause in the conversation, so Face thought about entering her office. He could see Jim was leaning on her desk.
At that moment Jim asked, "Would you like to have dinner with me this weekend?"
She faltered for a moment, cleared her throat, then replied, "I'm flattered, Jim. But I'm sorry I'll be away this weekend."
"Oh, okay. Maybe another time." Jim replied. Both he and Face noticed she didn't accept that rain check.
Jim excused himself and exited her office. Face pretended to be reading the notices on the office bulletin board, and to be unaware of Jim. After all no one likes a public rejection.
Assuming that it was Jim returning, she glanced up distractedly when she heard Face walk in. Her nonplussed expression quickly turned into a huge smile when she realized it was Faceman.
She bounced out of her chair to shut her door.
"Hi there!" Face said.
"Hi back at you. I'm glad you're ...you guys are back." She said giving Face a quick hug. Then a worried expression filled her eyes, "Is everything ok? Do you need something?"
Face chuckled comfortably, "Yes, we are all fine. No, I don't need anything."
This was met with a questioning gaze from her.
"I was hungry and in the neighborhood. So I thought I'd stop in to see if you wanted to grab lunch. I can fill you in on the last mission while we eat." Face explained flashing his smile.
"That sounds like a great idea! Let me shut down my computer and grab my purse."
She was organized within a minute and they headed toward the elevator. Just as the elevator door was about to close a hand jutted in. A slightly flustered Jim followed it into the car. "I'm glad I caught you. I meant to give you this." Jim was saying as he jumped into the elevator. Face noticed that Jim was grinning in what he hoped was a charming way. That was until he spotted Face. "Oh hello." he said skeptically.
She smiled and accepted the file now dangling in Jim's hand, "Thanks Jim." Realizing that the two men were sizing each other up, she continued, "Jim this us my friend Templeton. Templeton this is Jim Connors." The men exchanged salutations and a stiff hand shake, just as the doors opened onto the lobby.
"Well, have a good afternoon, and thanks again for the file." She said as they exited and Jim remained in the car.
Once outside Face asked her where they should go to eat. She opted for an open air cafe about two blocks from her building. The waitress promptly took their drink orders. They perused the menus and we're ready to give their orders when the waitress returned with their ice teas.
"Do you eat here often?" Face asked.
"Actually not really. I don't usually go out for lunch. I have supplies in the mini fridge in my office. So this is a nice treat." she replied.
"I like the open format. I'd prefer this over eating at my desk most days." Face continued.
"Well eating out is always much more fun when someone is with you." she countered with a smile.
The waitress came with their lunches. A club sandwich for her and a burger for Face.
"So where are you going this weekend?" Face asked between bites.
She glanced at him in confusion, "What makes you think I'm going away this weekend?"
Face silently chuckled to himself and thought "Con rule number one - never forget your cover story."
"I heard you turn down Connors' dinner invitation with the excuse that you'd be away this weekend."
"Oh that. I was just trying to turn him down kindly."
Face could tell she wanted to drop the subject but for some - bizarre even to himself - reason he wasn't ready to yet.
"He seemed nice enough. Why the rejection?"
"I've worked with him for a while now. I know there isn't any spark there, so why should I waste his time." she answered in her 'drop it now' tone.
"Oh but you can't be sure until you give him a chance." Face teased or prodded, he wasn't quite sure which.
"Look, Face, I know when I am attracted to a guy and when I'm not attracted to a guy. Ok? Enough. Tell me about the mission and the Team."
They spent the next hour slowly eating and chatting about the Team's 17 day mission in the rural hill country of Texas. They had outwitted and defeated an unscrupulous rancher who was illegally diverting and controlling the natural water supply for the region. People and animals were suffering because of this. That's why the client had hired them. They both laughed as Face told her about Murdock dressing up as Cowboy Chuck for the span of the mission which of course led to increasingly violent threats from B.A.
"Oh my Gosh! Look at the time. I need to get back." she suddenly declared. Face motioned for their check and paid. She offered a protest which he quickly squelched with a smile and shake of his head. He walked her back to her building.
"This was a wonderful lunch. Thanks for surprising me. I had been missing you ...guys." She said giving him a quick hug.
"You're welcome. Hey why don't you come by the penthouse after work. Everyone is still there, I'm sure they'd be glad to see you." Face invited.
"Ok sounds like a plan. I'll be there around 5:30-6. Ok?"
They parted ways at the lobby door. She entered and he headed off to his 'vette, cautiously parked a few blocks away.