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22 December 2008 @ 07:19 am
A Woman Waits for Me 32/39  
Title: A Woman Waits for Me
Chapter
: 32/39
Author: ladygray99
Pairing: Charlie/Colby, Don/OFC, David
Summary: When Don’s life slides into the darkness only family will help him find his way out. – Prep for the wedding begins.
Rating: PG13
Word Count: 1,992
Warning: none
Disclaimer: Numb3rs belongs to other people who are not me. I’m not making any money from this though I wish I were.
Previous Chapters: Part 4 of Whitman ‘verse. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31
Authors Notes: We’re going to pop into David’s head for this Chapter, okay? Honestly I still feel this chapter is a little rough and I’ve never quite gotten it into the shape I want but I need it here. Sorry.
Betas: swingandswirl and riverotter1951

 

Part 32
Things Unseen

David watched as Don paced in front of him and Colby. Don had wanted to speak to them both privately.

 “Okay Don, just spill.”

 “I need to request a favor from you both and you should both feel free to say no.”

 “Whatever it is…”

 “I have been asked to pick out groomsmen.”

 “Don it would be an honor…”

 “No.” Don cut in quick. “Don’t say yes yet. You don’t know what you’re getting into. This is going to be freaking huge.”

 “It really is,” said Colby.

 “Half the Bureau’s invited, I mean I’m talking about tux fittings, rehearsals, not to mention agreeing to be under the thumb of my father and Charlie, who have turned into some sort of maniacal evil overlords of wedding planning. Plus Charlie’s promising a stag night that could end in brain damage, liver failure or legal proceedings. I mean really, either of you, feel free to say no.”

 David looked to Colby who nodded in confirmation. David took a deep breath.

 “Don, I’d take a bullet for you, I think I can handle this.”

 Don nodded. “Okay, thank you.”

 ~

 The man at the tux shop had insisted that the only way to get everyone properly fitted in an hour was if all the assistants were brought in and everyone was fitted at once. This is how David found himself stripping in front of Don, Colby, Charlie, and Alan.

 “So, Don, does this count as sexual harassment?” David asked.

 “Only if Charlie makes a pass at you.”

 “Your place or mine, big boy?” Charlie said flatly, not even looking up from untying his shoelace.

 “Charlie,” Alan scolded.

 “There, now you’ve been harassed, feel better?” Don asked with a grin.

 “Strangely, yes.” David replied. Charlie shot him a teasing smile. David shook his head as he pulled off his shirt. On occasion he still had trouble putting together Don’s asexual walking computer of a little brother with Colby’s boyfriend who was practically the office flirt as well. The change hadn’t even been that gradual, David could practically pinpoint the day and it had been the day Charlie walked in wearing a thousand dollar suit knowing full well he looked hot, as opposed to jeans and a ratty t-shirt.

 “Oh, for crying out loud, Colby.” David heard Alan say. “Are you planning on invading somewhere single handedly?” David looked at Colby, who was unclipping a knife from around his calf and stacking it with three guns.

 “I was an eagle scout.” Colby said in his own defense.

 “So was I.” said Alan. “That’s why I keep a pocket knife on my key chain.”

 Colby shrugged. David unclipped his second and last gun from around his ankle. Truthfully he always thought Colby was a little overarmed but considering the life the man had lived he couldn’t really blame him. Not to mention all that armament was what was covering his back.

 David looked up to make a comment to Colby himself and froze, then quickly averted his eyes and went back to untying his shoes. David actually felt his heart pounding and he peeked up again to confirm what he had seen.

 Charlie was sitting on a table in his shorts, casual as anything, doodling in his notebook. David still had the occasional nightmare that featured lovable little Charlie covered in blood on a warehouse floor but he had the sudden realization that he hadn’t seen Charlie sans clothes since. And why would he? There had been that picture in the math journal but that had been almost abstract, black and white. The roadmap of scars across Charlie Eppes’ body was in front of him in harsh living color.

 He flicked his eyes to Colby, who seemed to take no notice. Don was occupied with something on his cell phone. Alan... Alan’s eyes were planted firmly on the floor. It could well be simple modesty about being undressed with four other men but something in the stiffness of his shoulders told David otherwise.

 David took a deep breath, quietly schooled his features and finished undressing.

 “So are we getting a classic tux, Don?” David asked.

 Don shrugged. “Hell if I know. All I know is I’m supposed to show up on the day and say I Do.”

 “Charlie picked the tuxes.” Alan said.

 “Really?”

 Charlie looked up from his notebook. “You think I was going to let a bunch of feds pick out tuxes? We’d all end up looking like rejects from the Hoover administration or an old Bond movie.”

 “Hey,” Don objected. “I think I run a pretty hip office.”

 “Hip yes, color coordinated, no. I used some of my old work into light waves to make sure the colors don’t clash with the bridesmaids’ dresses and as the mostly gay little brother I felt it was my duty.”

 “Mostly?” David asked with a raised eyebrow.

 Charlie shrugged. “I have my moments.”

 “I’m just afraid I’m going to end up looking silly.” Alan groused.

 “Dad, you will look great, I promise. You’ll be fighting off the ladies with stick.” Alan rolled his eyes as the fitters traipsed in with an entire rack of clothes.

 “For the groom.” The head fitter said, handing Don a set of hangers. The rack was quickly emptied and David found himself standing on a box with a guy attacking him with a piece of chalk and muttering to himself.

 “Hey, Charlie. I suddenly know what your chalkboards feel like.” David said.

 “I treat my chalkboards very well. Good ones are damn hard to find these days, no one makes them.”

 “He actually bought one off eBay.” Colby said. “Had it shipped all the way from Kansas.”

 “It had never been used. It was pristine, a completely virgin field of dark green. I set it up in the solarium.”

 David shook his head. Charlie was using the tone of voice men usually reserved for talking about their mistresses. “I don’t know Colby, I’d be jealous if I were you. Hearing a man talk like that.”

 “The chalkboards and I have come to an understanding, sort of a time share thing.”

 “You’d be the first to manage it,” said Don.

 “Damn straight.”

 Don turned around on his box and posed a little. “So guys, whatcha think?”

 Don was dressed all in black, except for a deep green vest that seemed to be made of the same satiny material as the tie. David wasn’t sure but he thought it might have done something to the color of Don’s eyes.

 “You look great Donnie.”

 “Thank you, Dad.”

 “Yeah Don, you look good.” David said.

 “Ramundo?” Charlie called to the guy who was buzzing around Don. “Can we get some cufflinks, silver or white gold with a stone or something that goes with the vest.”

 “No problem.”

 “Great.”

 The assistant fiddled with the tie around David’s throat then let him turn to face the mirrors. David had to admit the even with the fitting chalk he looked good. The jacket was made of top line material, the shirt felt like high-end linen. It was cut similar to Don’s and like Don’s it was all in black except where as Don had a green vest and black tie the groomsmen and Alan had black vests and deep green ties.

 “So Charlie, what’s the plan for this stag night Don keeps alluding to?” David asked.

“Ah, that is my little secret.”

 “At least tell us who’s coming?”

 “It’ll be us. Ian if he’s in town.”

 David chuckled. “The great Ian Edgerton in an LA bar crawl.”

 “We’re trying to talk Larry into coming.” Don said.

 “Larry?”

 “Well for the entertainment value if nothing else.”

 “Donnie, don’t go getting Larry into any trouble.” Alan warned.

 Charlie laughed. “Dad, I promise you if Larry wanted to get into trouble he would not need Don’s help. I mean, we’re talking about the guy who managed to orchestrate the theft of every vending machine on the MIT campus.”

 “That was Larry?”

 “Well, he was the idea guy.”

 “How’d he manage that?” David asked.

 “He got a grad student to hack into the computers of the vending machine company and fiddle with MIT’s account so all the machines were called in for servicing on the same day. I mean can you picture an entire campus of nerds without access to caffeinated soda or junk food? I’m told you could hear the screams clean across the Charles River.”

 “Remind me never to piss off Larry.”

 “Well, they did steal our cannon first.”

 A phone rang. It got pulled from a pile and tossed by an assistant to Don’s out stretched hand. “Eppes... okay... great. Got it.” Don clicked the phone off. “LAPD just picked up our guy. They’re sending him over.”

 “Great,” Charlie replied. “Ramundo. We’re going to have to wrap this up quick. Duty calls.”

 ~

 It was late when David pulled open the right drawer in the file room. Technically the file he was pulling was an unsolved so it was still in the building. He wasn’t even entirely sure why he was looking. Why something in him needed to know so badly. The doctor’s reports were cold and clinical, the initial victim statement was fractured, but the pictures told the story. Bruise erupting, hasty bandages to stop the worst of the bleeding before proper stitches could be put in, thick wet wounds already beginning to ooze with infection, little dots of blackened flesh, you could almost smell the nicotine stink from them, fluid dried on that wasn’t blood, cheeks pale with shock and cold and blood loss. The worst part was how detached Charlie’s eyes looked, how bizarrely calm as if it were all happening to someone else.

 David jumped as the door beeped open and quickly tried to file the pictures away.

 “Hey David I was heading out and...” David tried to hide the photos from Colby but it was too late “What the fuck?” Colby actually pushed him away hard enough that he impacted on the opposite wall. “What the fuck!” Colby said again. He scraped the photos back into the folder and roughly shoved it back into the drawer. “What the fuck are you doing, man?” Colby shouted.

 David shook his head not having a good answer. “I’m sorry. I just...”

 “You just what?!”

 “I just...I realized I didn’t know.”

 “Didn’t know what?” Colby snapped.

 “How bad it was.”

 Colby gave him a disgusted look. “It was bad, okay?”

 “No it’s... look, we all know Sherwood nabbed Lecroft and he’s dead in a ditch somewhere and it’s better than he deserved, it’s just... if the NSA hadn’t got him it would have... there would have been a trial and public records and follow up reports... and... ” David shook his head. “I realized, anyone else I would have known how bad it was and... I guess I was worried, man.”

 Colby looked at him, ice coming from the sweet farm boy face. “It’s a little late.”

 “I know, it’s just...Charlie’s okay, right?”

 “There are good days and not so good days. We take the good ones and we deal with the not so good ones.”

 David nodded. “He’s a lot stronger than he looks, isn’t he?”

 “Yeah. A lot weaker, too.”

 David nodded understanding. “And...” David took a deep breath “He’s a little nuts, isn’t he?”

 Colby gave an almost chuckle. “Yeah, but when you’re that smart they just call it eccentric.”

 David looked at the floor for a bit. “You know I give you a bit of shit, man, but...you and Charlie, it’s good, I don’t know, two of you together never seemed weird. It’s like something that just always was.”

 “Seeing as how you are literally the only guy in the office who hasn’t checked out Charlie’s ass at least once, that means a lot.”

 “No problem. Hey, I’m sorry about...” David waved vaguely at the drawers.

 Colby shook his head. “Don’t worry about it. I get it.”

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Erinstarlettmalfoy on December 21st, 2008 06:44 pm (UTC)
Hello! Sorry for being M.I.A. yesterday! Loooong day.

I know you said you were unsure about this chapter, and that it was a little rough, but it's actually been one of my favourites so far. It's always nice to see a story from another character's point of view, and poor David has been so quiet until now lol. And, I liked the small moments of humor mixed in with the morbidness that comes with David being curious about Charlie.

The last thing is: it always amuses me when someone references the state I live in. Hehe, especially when it's referenced as this far-off, strange place. :P Lol, someday people will realize that it's all city and suburbs out here, not farmlands and fields. I suppose we would have an old chalkboard or two lying around, however. ::winks::
ladygray99ladygray99 on December 21st, 2008 06:46 pm (UTC)
I'm a California girl. You all are just that weird flat bit in the middle and it looks like nothing but farm when you fly over. ;-)
Glad you liked David though.
fredbassettfredbassett on December 21st, 2008 08:11 pm (UTC)
Nice chapter. The idea of the boys wedding planning is rather fun :)
ladygray99ladygray99 on December 21st, 2008 08:24 pm (UTC)
You just know Alan's a closet wedding planer. :)
Devo79: crydevo79 on December 21st, 2008 09:39 pm (UTC)
I just saw that this was 32 out of 39!

32 out of 39!!!!!

Aaarrgggghhhhh.

What am I gonna do when this ends?
ladygray99ladygray99 on December 21st, 2008 09:51 pm (UTC)
With any luck I'll have a vignette done as well as some random smut. And you can always go back and re read the whole 'verse from the beginning and comment on overall flow and overarching themas.
Devo79devo79 on December 21st, 2008 10:08 pm (UTC)
Oh yeah...I could *wanders off*
ladygray99ladygray99 on December 22nd, 2008 07:18 am (UTC)
I'm not entirely sure how to take that?
Devo79devo79 on December 22nd, 2008 02:17 pm (UTC)
*snorts*

Am I making you nervous?
ladygray99ladygray99 on December 22nd, 2008 06:24 pm (UTC)
Always
ninou1ninou1 on December 21st, 2008 11:01 pm (UTC)
David insights are good. There's nothing rough about it, in my opinion.

We've seen what Charlie abduction has done to his family and Colby, and it's good to have someone looking at it in his own way.
Also the piece about David telling Colby how he sees Colby/Charlie relationship is nice, sometimes you just need to here those words. I'm sure, Colby was glad to hear them coming from his best friend.
ladygray99ladygray99 on December 22nd, 2008 11:12 am (UTC)
Colby really did need to hear that from David. It was one of those things that was left unsaid for too long.
riverotter1951: Qiriverotter1951 on December 22nd, 2008 06:18 am (UTC)
This is excellent with the tuxedo fitting organized like a military operation.

Interesting - David looked at the floor for a bit. “You know I give you a bit of shit, man, but...you and Charlie, it’s good, I don’t know, two of you together never seemed weird. It’s like something that just always was.” - and Colby understanding what David is trying to say.
ladygray99ladygray99 on December 22nd, 2008 11:13 am (UTC)
Alan and Charlie are determined that NOTHING is going to go wrong with this wedding even if they have to organize it like an invasions.
mikes_grrl on December 22nd, 2008 11:49 am (UTC)
I love the comfortable humor of this chapter, everyone poking each other good naturedly because of their discomfort over the fitting room situation.

I suspect Charlie's plan for the party are not as dangerous as he is alluding to, but the suspense is fun. And loved this:
...not to mention agreeing to be under the thumb of my father and Charlie, who have turned into some sort of maniacal evil overlords of wedding planning. Plus Charlie’s promising a stag night that could end in brain damage, liver failure or legal proceedings.

Evil wedding planning overlords! Bwwwahahahaha!

Like Starlett I loved the fact that this focused on David, and his perceptions and realizations. It must be supremely weird to be involved in the Eppes dynamics at any level and I forget that, being so wrapped up in your great stories, so it was refreshing to have David come in with a dose of reality. Excellent chapter all around!

ladygray99ladygray99 on December 22nd, 2008 11:54 am (UTC)
Thank you. I do like writing bits from the outside once in a while. Sort of a peek through the window. And I would fear the stag night if I were you. :)
ladygray99ladygray99 on December 22nd, 2008 11:56 am (UTC)
And yes I just happen to be up at one in the morning NZ time but about it head to bed. :-)
wcpjfditdov on December 22nd, 2008 09:34 pm (UTC)
Why does David need to realize that something is not quite right with Charlie? Love your humor as always.
ladygray99ladygray99 on December 23rd, 2008 12:20 am (UTC)
it might come up a little later.
chocolate is not meant to be ice cream.: charlieickysheep on December 23rd, 2008 12:46 am (UTC)
nice one... with a mostly gay charlie :) really had to laugh about that...
and I liked the way David sees everything especially charlie. Nice to see things from another point of view.
well, so I'm waiting for the wedding :)
ladygray99ladygray99 on December 23rd, 2008 12:48 am (UTC)
wedding in a few day. got to have the stag night first.
Mia: theboysmia_dcwut_09 on January 2nd, 2009 12:16 am (UTC)
yay colby and david talk
i love their conversation i knew it was a matter of time before david got curious
ladygray99ladygray99 on January 2nd, 2009 12:18 am (UTC)
I didn't know it was going to happen. David just tapped on my head one day and asked.
Miamia_dcwut_09 on January 2nd, 2009 12:44 am (UTC)
thats kinda of the best pt of writing when something you did expect happens
twins_m0m on January 16th, 2009 07:40 pm (UTC)
I liked this being from David's point of view. You don't write him very often. I think you did a good job of capturing him. Loved Charlie being the gay fashion designer for the group. I don't think Alan or Charlie (or Colby for that matter) will let Don get cold feet and bolt. Colby and David's talk at the end was very nice. I think it helped both of them to talk about the craziness that is Charlie. I think it helped their friendship.
ladygray99ladygray99 on January 17th, 2009 02:24 am (UTC)
I do like writing David but he has a very mellow laid back muse that isn't very pushy so he doesn't get a lot of screen time. I hope to work on that more this year.
laura_trekkielaura_trekkie on January 18th, 2009 05:16 pm (UTC)
The guys sound very smart! I wonder what Charlie's got planned for the stag do?

Nice bit with Colby and David at the end.

Laura.
ladygray99ladygray99 on January 19th, 2009 04:47 am (UTC)
drunkenness and debauchery