Question: How would things progress for our favorite globetrotting, crime stopping duo if that mid-credits ending scene had gone just a tad... differently?
Hobbs couldn't have thought of a better way to end his workout cool down than with a friendly little call to the most ornery of his new English frenemies. A call that happened to be timed to line up just right with a little something Hobbs was calling 'poetic justice'.
So, with a million dollar smile quick to spread across his sweat drenched face, the man who'd just pumped more iron than most people dreamed of touching in their lives hit the appropriate contact and let it ring.
"What, need me to step in and save the world again?" Came the brusque voice that never failed to make the bodybuilder chuckle. Even from thousands of miles away.
"Naw, just calling to check up on my bestest buddy," Hobbs lied with a barely restrained chortle. "How's London this time of day? Look like rain? Or just more of that depressing excuse for sunshine you poor 'blokes' get when Mother Nature gets bored of torturing you?"
"First, the rain cut off at five this morning and second, I'm pretty sure it's your lot Mother Nature's got a grudge against. What with your bloody boiling heatwaves and blacktop melting, unrelenting 'sunshine'."
"Oh, I miss this when we're not together," Hobbs found himself saying as he shook his head in amusement.
"You mean, the only time I get any peace and quiet?" Shaw griped back, sounding like he might have been picking a stein off a bar.
"If that's what you call spending time in the most depressing armed assault and robbery capital of the world, then yeah," Hobbs said as he gave the gym floor a sidelong look.
This was turning out even more perfect than he'd been hoping. Especially the part where he could hear Shaw mutter something unfriendly under his breath and set his mug down with a firm clunk.
Yep. The LA based heavy hitter was going to enjoy his payback.
"But really," Hobbs started up again, before the angry spy could put his next insult together, "I just called to check in and say hi, and now that I've done that I'll-"
"Wait," came a request Hobbs hadn't been expecting. In a voice far more tired than it had been up until then. Tired enough that he felt compelled to do what he'd been asked and wait. Feeling just a little nonplussed while he did.
"I, um, I wanted to apologise for, uh, for that stunt I pulled with airport security. Back there. During the mission," said the spy who it sounded like was twisting around and doing his best to keep what he was saying from reaching any ears but Hobbs'. "It was a dick move and you won't find me pullin' something like that again. On account of us bein' professionals, and all."
"So, wait a sec," Hobbs started with a confused shake of his head, "are you saying you're sorry about that stupid con you pulled?"
"Like I said: dick move," Shaw assured, voice laced with an acute sort of unease. The kind any spy's took when they were forced to tell the truth.
"Wow. I honestly wasn't expecting to hear that. Like, ever," Hobbs admitted. Eyebrows furrowing deep as he came to a sudden, very mature decision and scrambled to pull out a second cellphone. Selecting the most recently messaged contact and typing up a fresh text as quickly yet quietly as he could with just his off hand.
"Yeah, well don't expect to hear it again," the Brit started with considerable more bravado than he'd used a moment before. "It's not often I muck it up that bad."
"Huh, I suppose not. Considering you did help me save the world last week," the man juggling two phones at once admitted as he pressed send on his muted secondary communication.
"Uh-uh, you're the one helped me with that one. Ask anybody," Shaw challenged, voice radiating smugness and self-satisfaction.
"Uh, I already did and they agree that it was actually you helping me," Hobbs informed, attention split like only someone with considerable practice at such knew how as he waited with baited breath for a reply to his clandestine, urgent, text message.
"Oh really? Who'd you ask then?" Shaw demanded to the sound of a mug leaving a hard surface, as if for a long draft.
"My daughter. Among others," Hobbs informed. Just a moment before the text he'd been waiting for lit up his off hand phone. Which he held up in a victorious fist pump before putting his full attention back on his ongoing conversation.
"Nope, that's favoritism there. Ask somebody who's not genetically predisposed to being in your corner," Shaw said, sounding rather pleased as the unmistakable sound of someone licking foam off their stubbly upper lip came through the mic.
"Uh-huh, well, I'll do that when you ask someone other than your own ego. How's that sound for fair?" Hobbs challenged right on back.
"Bugger off," said the guy obviously tired of being distracted from his pint. Ready to go back to enjoying his private indulgence in that quaint little pub all those thousands of miles away.
"Okay, that I can do," Hobbs assured, mouth morphing into a smile as he did. "So long as you promise to enjoy the rest of that beer, my friend. You've earned it."
"Don't tell me what to do, 'friend'," Shaw said, sounding as if he had exactly zero plans to do anything else regardless.
"Alright," Hobbs acquiesced with a chuckle. Then with a quick clear of the throat, he added, "And, hey, man, thanks for the apology. It means a lot." Something he'd never thought he'd say to this particular hard-nosed spy.
"Like I said: don't expect to hear it again."
"Wouldn't dream of it," Hobbs assured, once again smiling at the spy's gruff disposition. "And like I said: enjoy the beer."
Hobbs pulled the phone from his ear as the call was terminated from the other end, slipping it back in his pocket with a thoughtful hum.
Strangely enough, he wasn't disappointed. Even though his carefully laid out plans for a little off-hours sting operation had been ruined. In fact, whatever had just happened instead, in a weird way, had him feeling kinda... good.
Good enough that he held up the secondary phone he found he was still holding and reread the response he'd gotten from the high ranking Interpol contact he didn't 'officially' have.
'Copy that. High value asset police extraction called off.'
"Whew, you dodged a bullet with that one, Shaw," Hobbs said to himself as he stowed his secret secret-business phone and turned for the locker room.
"I mean, that guy, admitting he was wrong? Never thought I'd see the day," he informed the heavy bag as he made his way out of the gym proper. Knowing even as he rubbed a towel across his still sweat beaded face, that after that unexpectedly pleasant interaction, he was going to be making the next call to his caustic, foul-mouthed English connection sooner than he'd expected.
On account of him actually wanting to.
Since this is my first stab at either of them, please feel free to let me know whether Hobbs or Shaw felt right!
Thanks for reading! Hope y'all enjoyed chapter one!