A/N: This is, without a doubt, one of my dumber stories. (Just look at the opening line! XD) But I had an idea and decided to run with it. Enjoy!
"Nothing like a tadpole up your sleeve to wake you up in the morning."
MacGyver did his best to ignore his new friend wriggling its way around his elbow, but it wasn't easy. Especially when two more joined the party.
MacGyver was up to his nose in murky water, hair plastered about his face with river weeds and algae. If he was lucky, he looked like just another river rock to the guards patrolling the moat. Kneeling in the cold mud with his numb fingers interlaced in the submerged branches around him, he was sure starting to feel like it.
"Well… people do like to tell me that I've got a hard head."
The clamp of boots on mud warned MacGyver of a coming patrol. He took a breath and lowered himself until only his eyes were above the water. He watched the reeds along the moat rustle and listened to the noisy snuffle of a Rottweiler.
MacGyver couldn't see the dog, but he knew what it was from the earlier glimpse that had sent him scrambling into the moat. He generally liked dogs, but the presence of the guard dog had been an unexpected complication. MacGyver's consolation was that the guard dog only made it every fourth rotation of the guards, meaning he had another twenty minutes before the dog would pass by the moat again.
Once the boots were out of earshot, MacGyver lifted his head and softly blew his nose clear. After taking a moment to slowly shake his sleeves clear of tadpoles -and be grateful none had swum into his nose- MacGyver crawled onto the shore.
Keeping low, MacGyver crept through the reeds to the chain-link fence on the other side. He raised his head just enough to scan for patrols, then pulled off his jacket and threw it over the strands of barbed wire at the top of the fence. He quickly scrambled over, then pulled his jacket back after him and raced to a clump of weeds, where he again dropped to listen.
No shouts gave him away, so MacGyver took another few minutes to catch his breath and put his jacket back on while another patrol passed. He ran to the long, low building made of concrete overgrown with ivy sprouting over the wooden roof.
MacGyver peeked in the nearest window. In the darkness beyond, he could make out big, boxy shapes. Trucks and vans, full of weapons that had been recently stolen and were on their way to being sold to a violent resistance.
Unless MacGyver could prevent it. His job was to locate the weapons and get evidence of to whom the weapons were being sold. With any luck, the evidence would be enough to put the arms dealers behind bars.
MacGyver slipped along the edge of the building, checking each window as he passed. He found more rooms of vehicles and a dim room full of bunks before he reached the corner.
MacGyver checked his watch, then ducked around the corner. He hid behind some broken crates draped with dead ivy to watch the next patrol pass.
MacGyver went to the next corner and peered around. The path was clear, and he saw a smaller, shed-like building across a stretch of roughly chopped weeds. There wasn't any cover around the building, not even ivy, and a narrow tinted window on the far side of the door.
"I wonder if the office manager is in. I have a few suggestions about their… explosive tenants."
MacGyver touched his earpiece. "You hear me, Pete?"
"Barely," Pete responded, his voice garbled. "What happened, Mac?"
MacGyver winced. "Took a swim. Sorry, Pete. Is the tracker still good?"
"Yeah, we've got you. Are you in trouble?"
"No, but I've found what we're looking for. How soon can you be here?"
MacGyver tapped his leg. "Sounds good to me."
"Mac, what's wrong?"
"Except I've got ten minutes before the dog's close enough to smell one big tadpole poking around."
MacGyver eyed the shed. The heavy metal door didn't have a lock on the outside, but MacGyver was willing to bet that there would be some kind of lock on the inside.
MacGyver scanned the area, then ran to the shed. He flattened himself against the wall and paused only long enough to listen for any shouts or gunshots, then slid along to the door. No way to check inside, MacGyver decided his chances were better against whoever might be inside over the guards he knew were outside. MacGyver tried the handle and, finding the door unlocked, thrust it open.
The room inside was small, crowded further by a desk and chair. A computer sat on the desk and papers were piled around it. A wooden crate spilled thin metal rods, a myriad of detonators, wires, and tools. Luckily, there was nobody inside, though the rifle leaning against the desk suggested it wouldn't be that way for long.
MacGyver slipped outside, then ran back to the broken crates. He grabbed some boards and hurried back inside while hugging the armload of boards to keep as quiet as possible.
Not quiet enough. Just before he closed the door, MacGyver heard a bark. Hissing between his teeth, MacGyver slipped the door bolt into place.
MacGyver put two of the boards against the window. He took four more of the boards and tied them into two long boards with the wire. He wedged these between the boards over the window and far wall. At most, it would slow them down if they came through the window.
MacGyver glanced at the computer, then rejected the idea of trying to hack in when he heard more barking. Instead, he pulled the cord out of the outlet. He dug out another coil of wire, and a wire cutter tumbled out with it. Grinning, MacGyver cut the cord a few inches above the plug. He stripped the cord with his pocket knife, then twisted the exposed wires to the coiled wire. A metal rod was attached to the opposite end of the wire, then shoved between the bolt and the door strike.
More barking came from outside. MacGyver guessed the dog was near the river and headed his way. He plugged in his makeshift defense and backed away from the electrified door.
Next he took one of the detonators and pulled out the wires. Using the wire cutters, he crimped the bigger opening and put the smaller to his lips. When the barking got close, MacGyver blew.
The barking broke off with a yelping howl that moved away and brought a chorus of startled shouts. Annoyed voices rose amongst them, with a couple headed toward the shed.
A shout came from outside, followed by a flurry of curses and a loud bang on the door.
"Hey, Pete?" MacGyver said.
"Any chance on you getting here a bit quicker?"
"Just hang on!"
"Sure." MacGyver clicked his tongue. "Easy."
Glass shattered, making MacGyver flinch back. But the barrier held against the pounding from outside. MacGyver picked up a board and sidled over to the desk. He scanned the papers on top, then grabbed a list of names and folded it to stick inside his jacket.
Outside, the shouting abruptly broke off, then someone was yelling to get back. MacGyver spun toward the door.
The force of an explosion threw MacGyver against the wall. He slumped to the floor, clumsily covering his face and neck to avoid the debris. His vision was blurry, no matter how hard he blinked.
A goon pounced through the opening. MacGyver snatched up his board and swung, still half-blind, and felt it connect. MacGyver scrambled over his falling form, his vision clearing in time for him to see the half-dozen goons waiting outside with their guns pointed at him.
MacGyver spun around the corner of the building as bullets hit the wall, grunting in surprise, "Yeow!"
MacGyver pushed off and ran toward the opposite corner of the shed. If he made a break for it, he could maybe make it to the fence before-
Something caught on MacGyver's foot. He sprawled on the ground hard, knocking the air out of his lungs, but he pushed himself onto his back. He immediately froze when he spotted a pistol pointed at his face.
"MacGyver!" Pete's voice yelled through the earpiece. "Mac, talk to me!"
The man standing over MacGyver had the same camo cap, well-worn green shirt, mud-stained jeans as the rest of the goons, but something about the clever grin on his face and knowing glint in his ice-blue eyes set him apart. He kept the pistol pointed at MacGyver, but there was an ease in his stance, one that said he could overpower MacGyver if he decided to fight.
Not that MacGyver wouldn't try.
"Stay down, MacGyver," the man said with just enough of a British accent to be noticeable.
"So you know my name," MacGyver said, not liking how clearly dazed he sounded. "But I don't know yours. That's a bit unfair."
"Mac, what are you talking about?" Pete asked.
"Shame," the man said, then lifted his head as the rest of the goons stumbled around the edge of the shed. "Good job, men, you very nearly let him get away."
"He's slippery," complained one of the men.
Another goon, nursing a clearly broken nose, hefted his rifle and growled, "Let's just shoot him and be done with it."
"Now, Yancy," said the first man, "Let's not be hasty. If I wanted him dead, I'd do it myself."
MacGyver blinked slowly. It had been a trap, then? And with Pete still on his way, MacGyver had to stall them.
"Gentlemen, go get the trucks," the man said. "Davis, tie him up, please. Hands behind his back."
Yancy curled his lip reproachfully, but turned and loped away. All but one of the goons followed.
MacGyver was rolled onto his back by the burly goon, then it occurred to him that now was as good a time as any. He kicked out, missing the man who'd caught him, but catching Davis off-guard long enough that MacGyver was able to scramble to his hands and knees.
Sharp impact in the center of MacGyver's back sent him face-first into the weeds. He gasped for air, fighting to collect his senses. The cold muzzle of a pistol pressed against the back of his head, freezing MacGyver in place.
"I said stay down," murmured a softly accented voice in MacGyver's ear. "It would be a shame to go through all this trouble to catch you alive if I had to shoot you here, wouldn't it?"
A muffled exclamation came from his earpiece. MacGyver grimaced, but tilted his chin in agreement.
"Very good. Davis, can you tie a knot or no?"
"Yeah, yeah," Davis muttered.
MacGyver's arms were pulled behind his back and his wrists were tied tightly together. He was then hauled to his feet and pushed toward the main building.
Garage doors opened at the back of the building and a dozen trucks and vans roared outside. The back door of the closest van was thrown open as the trio approached, and MacGyver was shoved inside.
MacGyver, unable to keep his feet under him, tripped and face planted the floor. His eyes crossed and his ears briefly rang before clearing in time to hear the angry words behind him.
"-want him as undamaged as possible, do you understand?!"
"Yes, sir," Davis grumbled.
"The sentiment is appreciated and shared. But it was about time I hopped along."
MacGyver rolled onto his back as Davis and the boss climbed inside. Davis forced MacGyver back onto his stomach.
"Watch his hands," the boss said.
MacGyver held back a wince. He flinched when the boss leaned down, but the man only pulled out MacGyver's tiny, transparent earpiece.
"Peter Thornton," he said into the earpiece. "I have your man. Come after us if you wish, but know now that your efforts will fail."
The boss dropped the earpiece, then stood and stepped on it. Now MacGyver did wince.
"These guys had disappeared many times before. And it looks like this time, I was disappearing with them."