(A/N) For my AU prompts series on Tumblr.
Nobody actually asked me for this one (I don't think it's even on the prompt list!) but since my AU muscles have been flexing, this popped up in my brain. Cisco as Q isn't that original, I guess, but what the hey. Thanks to hedgiwithapen on Tumblr for coming up with some of the gadgets. Also, I would like to share that you people are lucky I didn't title this License to Chill.
She'd been trained in stealth since before she could remember, but all the same, when she slipped into C's lair, he called out, "Agent Frost, my very favorite spy!"
She stood blinking at his turned back. She'd evaded all the cams in the hallway, disabled all the proximity alerts. There were no mirrors or reflective surfaces in this room, nothing that might have warned him. How did he do that? she asked herself.
He looked over his shoulder with a smile. "Hey, like the new hair. They're going thematic with this cover, aren't they?"
She pulled an ice-white curl over her shoulder and made a face. "I don't think it goes with my skin tone."
He looked her over and shrugged. "You won't curdle milk."
He just grinned at her. "Got everything ready for you."
Of course he did. She'd gotten her assignment half an hour ago, but she would bet C had everything prepared since this morning. For a guy who seemed to live in the bowels of HQ and had never, as far as she knew, gone out in the field, he knew everything.
"So, all the usual toys. Bugs, detectors, more of your favorite ice grenades - "
She smiled over the palm-sized balls that could be squeezed and then thrown to create a sheet of ice, either to trip up pursuers or for her to slide to safety.
"And I got you four new Icicles."
The clear plastic knives that could get through almost any security system were her signature weapon. About a year back, he'd tweaked the plastic formula so that she could remotely trigger a self-destruct in each one. It would "melt" and be gone in under two minutes minutes. No fingerprints, no residue, nothing to trace back to her if she had to discard one.
"Nice. Anything new?" There always was, even if it was a tweak to something.
"Oh, you got me. Have a look."
He handed her a double-ended lipstick, color on one side, balm on the other. She looked up skeptically. "Blue? That's a tough look to pull off."
He grinned. "Put it on."
She pulled out her favorite compact, she swiped the blue lipstick across her lips and watched it smear on a dark pink, like crushed raspberries.
"Red 27," he explained. "You can get practically the same effect from the ones at Walgreen's, but I thought it was fun."
"It is a neat trick, but how is this going to help me in the field?" She could imagine the cognitive dissonance distracting somebody. Maybe.
"The color? It'll make you more beautiful, naturally. And it'll keep you from mixing it up with your regular lipsticks. Not to mention, it counteracts what's in the balm."
She looked at the waxy white end of the lipstick with more respect. "And what does the balm do?"
"Neurotoxin." He waggled his fingers. "Nighty night."
His smile softened, became less sharklike. "Temporarily. Eight, ten hours or so."
He knew she preferred not to kill if she could help it. Sometimes she couldn't help it.
He pointed at the blue end. "One coat of that will counteract several coats of the balm, but if you feel your lips start to tingle, wash it all off fast. Soap and water if you swing it."
She capped the lipstick, twisting it tightly closed. "All right. Anything else?"
"A new mini-cam." He handed her a box. "Stills, video, audio, heaps of storage, and it's platinum. On a necklace so you can wear it somewhere fancy."
She opened it and went still at the sight of the pendent. "A snowflake?"
"I thought it was pretty."
She looked at him suspiciously. Nobody was supposed to know her real name.
Of course, she wasn't supposed to know his real name either. But it was her job, wasn't it? To find out things she wasn't supposed to know.
Cisco Ramon looked back at her, innocence written all over his face.
She shook herself. Agent Frost, snowflake, it wasn't that far of a stretch. She made herself smile at him. "I love it." That, at least, was the truth.
"Great." He checked the time. "Your flight to Moscow leaves in fifteen minutes."
She scooped everything together and stashed it in her bag. She would sort everything out later, on the plane. "I'd better go catch it."
"Hey," he said, and she paused at the door of the lab, turning back.
"You know the deal," he said. "Those toys aren't yours. You need to bring them back to me. In person."
And there it was - the reason she always stopped down here and had him equip her personally. He was the only person in the organization who seemed to think that between the success of the mission and her continued existence, the latter was more important.
He was wrong, of course, but it was still nice to hear.
She smiled at him. "Don't I always?"