There was nothing Face was afraid of more than disappoint hi CO, that happened to be his lover too and friend and father, sometimes. The young man was so fond of the Colonel to trust him with his own life and he was shocked when the older man had quietly declared he was in love with him a little over two years ago, because how could this great man feel affection and *love* for him, who was universally considered as hot-headed, stubborn and impossible to live with? Anyway, after Face's initial stupor, the two men had developed a strong relationship; it took them a while to learn to trust each other, especially for Hannibal because he was afraid of losing his lover in case he would meet someone younger than him; but Face proved to be completely loyal to him and the Colonel was immensely proud of his boy to ask him if he wanted to move in his own home (a temporary one, of course, since they were always moving and never stayed in the same place for longer than one year, but home at least); it was now almost a good ten months they lived together, with up and downs, obviously.

In two days it would be Hannibal's birthday and Face knew the Colonel didn't like to party or to be too loud about the "circumstance". Last year they couldn't properly celebrate the occasion because they were on a difficult mission but this year they were lucky: they have just returned from a mission (nothing difficult, a simple Covert Operation, just routine for the legendary A-Team of Colonel's Smith) and Face was determined to do something special for his lover. He was lucky, too, because Hannibal had a meeting with the General at 15:00 and that gave Face time to organize a little something without hurry and without having him around. But he couldn't decide what to do: he thought about asking some of the guys of the base to come to their home to celebrate, along with Murdock and BA, obviously; the idea was tempting but it was more *his* kind of thing, he wasn't sure Hannibal would appreciate so many people to invade his little private space outside the base. He thought about telling Murdock and BA only, but he was sure the pilot couldn't hold back his excitement and in the end they would had half the soldiers and the officers of the base at their little private party and it wasn't what he wanted. Face wanted to surprise Hannibal, he wanted to do something the older wouldn't expect from him, something very special to show him how much he loved him; no, a birthday party wasn't enough!

Maybe he could cook him an aphrodisiac dinner, with oysters and champagne; but where to find oysters and champagne in the desert? And he was an awful cook, too! Maybe he could wait for the Colonel completely naked on the kitchen table, wearing sushi, waiting for the older man to devour him and the fish, like Samantha did in an episode of "Sex and the city"? But again, where to find Sushi? And in that episode, Samantha's boyfriend was late and she got tired of waiting for him. Face wasn't sure Hannibal liked sushi, anyway. He knew Hannibal liked strawberries and he knew that he could find, somewhere and someway, but he had already did something like that on their anniversary (when he managed to scam a delicious frosted covered cake with cream and strawberries). He couldn't think of anything else when suddenly he thought of roses! It was a lady's thing, alright, but surely Hannibal had never received flowers in his whole life. If the situation was on reverse, if it was his birthday, he would have liked the idea. Decision taken, Face talked to some old friend who owed his a favor in order to organize the most beautiful private birthday party of the Colonel's life.

When Hannibal came home, after the meeting, and he entered the main door he almost didn't recognize the place as his own. Candles everywhere created an intimate and romantic atmosphere, roses petals on the floor formed a small path that led to the bedroom; there, on the bed, there was a note from Face: "Go get dressed, my love; I'll wait for you in the sitting room. Please, wear your official uniform." Nothing else, just that simple request. Hannibal, delighted by the situation, did showered, shaved, brushed his teeth then carefully got dressed as he was asked and went into the sitting room where Face, wearing his official uniform himself, looking more gorgeous than usual, was waiting for him with a huge bunch of red roses in his lap. The Colonel held his breath in surprise and blushed, involuntarily taking a step back; Face noticed the gesture and cursed in his mind – he should have known Hannibal wouldn't liked the idea! – and started to get up, putting the roses on the near table but the older man stopped him.

"No, please, Face, don't… I'm sorry, I didn't mean to upset you!".

Both men were embarrassed to show their emotions. Finally, it was Face who spoke first.

"If you think this is stupid, I'll give the roses to the new female lieutenant of Colonel Miller's team!" he declared quietly.

Hannibal felt himself blushing even more. "I've never got roses before. They are beautiful! I'm absolutely surprised, Face!" Red roses meaning love, it was just perfect.

The colonel fell silent, unable to talk another word, afraid of bursting in tears in front of his lover. Face understood his discomfort and also knew the older man wasn't refusing him nor his gift; he silently offered the bunch of red roses to Hannibal, who accepted them with a shy warm smile.

"Happy birthday, John!"

END