Pairing: Charlie/(Colby), Don, Ian
Disclaimer: Belongs to other people, not me.
Warnings/Squicks: crying babies.
Summary: Who’s scarier, a screaming baby or a trained sniper?
Previous chapters: Part of the Vignettes ‘verse after A Fight and 9 Months Ago
Notes: Just had an urge to get Ian in the same room as a baby. Feedback please?
A Complexion for Tears
Ian Edgerton was talking with Don when he heard the blood curdling, banshee scream of a very angry infant. He spun around in time to see Professor Eppes scurry across the office making a bee-line for his brother, several bags thrown over his shoulder, and a screaming infant in his arms.
“Hey Charlie.” Don said with a wince. “I though dad had her today?”
Charlie looked terrible. There were dark rings under his eyes, his hair hung limp and snarled around his face, and he had three days of really bad stubble.
“There was some accident down at the site he’s working on and he had to run, and she’s got an appointment for booster shots in twenty minutes, and the notes you need are here somewhere, and she had the hiccups all night so hasn’t slept.”
Ian watched as Charlie tried to rummage though a bag with one hand while trying to sooth the screaming baby with the other.
“Here, let me take her.” Ian said.
Charlie held the baby a little closer and leaned back, away from Ian.
‘Well he’s got the defensive instinct down at least.’
“I’m the second oldest of ten unlike you, youngest of two.” Ian held out his hands.
Charlie carefully handed over the baby and eyeballed Ian for a moment until he was sure the child wasn’t about to be dropped on her head. Once he seemed satisfied Charlie dived with two hands into a bag pulling out stacks of paper, sorting them out on a nearby desk.
“Her name’s Esther.” Don whispered to Ian.
Ian had spent an unpleasantly large amount of his adolescences hushing screaming babies. He gently bounced her up and down until the screams settled into mild fussing.
“There, there sweet thing, settle down.” He wiped her face with the edge of the blanket. “Don’t cry darling, you don’t have the complexion for tears.” Esther settled down a little more. “There we go. Aren’t you a pretty little thing? Gonna break hearts aren’t you?” Ian looked up from the baby and noticed more than slightly predatory looks on the faces of some of the female agents.
‘That’s right ladies, tall, dark, and scary is good with kids. Come and get me.’ Ian thought.
Charlie handed a large stack of paper over to Don. “I really don’t have time to explain, just flip to the last page for the punch line, it’s circled in red. You have my cell number if you get confused.”
Don looked over his frazzled, haggard, brother. “Have you and Colby though about a nanny or something?”
Charlie shook his head. “Summer break is in a week and I can stay at home, and by the time we get back she’ll be almost old enough for the CalSci staff/student day-care.”
Ian tickled Esther’s cheek. “You’ll know your periodic table of elements before any other girl in school.” Esther yawned and began to doze off.
Charlie slung the baby bag over one shoulder, his laptop bag over the other, took Esther back with a quick thank you, and scurried out of the office as fast as he’d arrived.
As soon as Charlie was out of sight Ian began to laugh. He actually had to sit down he was laughing so hard.
“Would someone please tell me how that happened?” Ian gasped out.
Don looked up from Charlie’s results. “That is the result of Charlie sticking his thing where it didn’t belong and now dealing with the consequences.”
“And Granger is still speaking with him?”
Don shrugged. “Colby apparently has the ability of almost infinite forgiveness. Who knew?”