Chapter Ten: An Old Acquaintance
The feds had been onto a promising lead not long after the bridge bombing, which he had delightedly taken responsibility for, but when they raided the place he was long gone. It looked like he'd been tipped off by someone which only raised more questions. Relations were already strained between the feds and the Harris PD and that setback certainly didn't help matters.
The weather had cooled a little as Autumn got into its stride but it still remained warm and pleasant, a refreshing change from the stiflingly hot summer they'd endured. Reggy had finally gone back to work, anxious to get his teeth into a new case, and was in the process of finding someone to rent his apartment. He had now moved in with Kriss properly; although unopened boxes of his belongings still littered the apartment, creating a sort of obstacle course which they had to navigate through on a daily basis. Mokka, to Reggy surprise and just in overwhelming, followed in their path with such daintiness.
"You ready Kriss?" Reggy called as he grabbed his keys.
They were going out with the guys for the first time since Reggy's injury, this time with Brad accompanying them, and both were looking forward to it immensely, needing to forget recent events and enjoy themselves for a change.
Kriss walked in from the bedroom. Reggy turned and froze as he took in Kriss's attire and admired the view.
Kriss's deep purple shirt and black pants clung to him in all the right places and Reggy was once again struck by just how incredibly sexy he was. His hungry expression didn't go unnoticed by Kriss who smiled and approached him seductively. He grabbed Reggy's tie and slowly reeled him in, stopping when they were just a hair's breadth apart. "Do you like what you see officer?"
Reggy only managed a small squeak in response, his eyes dark with desire. Kriss laughed and gave him a kiss which Reggy strung out considerably longer than Kriss intended. "Come on," he chuckled, smacking Reggy's ass, "we're gonna be late."
The club was already fairly busy when they arrived, a little later than intended. They had to push through a throng of people to get to the bar where the others were standing, steady drinking already underway.
"Ahh, here they are," Greg smirked knowingly when they eventually reached the group. "Get held up boys?"
Reggy ignored him while Kriss just smiled innocently as they both accepted the flurry of hugs and back slaps in greeting. As Reggy went to get them some drinks Kriss moved to stand with Brad, who was looking a little intimidated by the group and gave Kriss a grateful smile. Kip was hovering around him like a moth to a flame, much to everyone's amusement.
"Stop looking so tense Brad," Kriss murmured to him quietly, "they're a bunch of pussycats really."
Greg overheard and looked at him indignantly. "Hey Kriss, you're destroying our street cred."
Kenney snorted. "Our street cred doesn't stand a chance with Kip here." Kip immediately jumped on his back and kissed his cheek sloppily with a grin as Kenney tried his hardest to shake him off.
Kriss chuckled, glad to see that Brad was also laughing at the pair as he finally relaxed, evidently finding the whole thing highly amusing. A bottle of beer was suddenly waved in front of Kriss's face which he took with a smile, leaning back slightly into Reggy's tall frame as Reggy wrapped an arm around his waist.
Kip had resumed his study of Brad, seeing him glance at Reggy and Kriss with a smile. He thought he caught a flash of envy cross his face briefly and wondered if his feelings for Kriss ran deeper than friendship. Kip couldn't blame him if they did; after all, Kriss was an extremely attractive man. However, the more he watched, the more he came to realize that Brad's gaze wasn't centered solely on Kriss but on both of them. It was obvious that Brad yearned for that kind of relationship as much as he did and that thought made his heart a little lighter.
"Okay," Greg said loudly, raising his hand, "now everyone's finally here and you all have drinks, I've got an announcement to make."
"Oh God, you're not gay too are you?" Kenney asked in alarm and there was a outburst of laughter.
"No," Greg smirked, "I'm definitely not gay."
"Thank God for that, I don't wanna be the only straight guy in the group."
Kip put an arm around his shoulder, breathing noisily in a bad impersonation of Darth Vader. "Come over to the dark side Luke."
"I'm not Luke, I'm Kenney."
"Oh, my mistake," Kip said cheerily, returning to his normal voice and removing his arm as the others cracked up.
"So what is it then?" Reggy asked Greg once the chortles had subsided. He was genuinely curious, although he had an idea of what it might be..
"Yeah, don't keep us in suspense Greg," Kip said excitedly, looking like a little boy on Christmas morning.
"Well," Greg said, pausing for dramatic effect as all eyes fixed on him, "this time next year I'm gonna be a father. Piper's pregnant."
There was an explosion of noise as everyone rushed forwards to congratulate and hug him, huge smiles all round.
"I'm so happy for you buddy," Reggy grinned, "I bet Piper's over the moon."
Greg gave an answering snort. "You have no idea, she has baby names picked out and everything."
"How far along is she?" Kriss asked with interest.
"About eight weeks. I know it's still risky at this stage but we wanted to tell you guys."
"I'm sure she'll be fine," Kriss smiled. "Who's her ob/gyn?"
"Spot the medic," Reggy murmured in amusement, receiving a playful elbow in his stomach from Kriss in return.
"Doctor Mortimer over at Hollow Hospital. Do you know her?"
"Yeah, she's very good."
"Okay, enough questions," Reggy said firmly, raising his bottle. "Let's concentrate on celebrating."
As the evening wore on Reggy was happy to see Kriss relaxing and enjoying himself. The six of them chatted, laughed, and generally enjoyed each other's company after too long an absence. As far as Reggy was concerned, there was no better tonic for their troubles. Brad and Kip had really hit it off and stayed next to each other pretty much all evening, pointedly ignoring the smirks and teasing comments sent their way. Reggy was determined to get Kip back for everything he'd had to endure when he'd started dating Kriss. He smiled as the man in question returned from the bar with more drinks. He'd barely reached Reggy when they heard a shout behind them.
A fairly attractive man in his forties was approaching, smiling widely. There was something about him that immediately raised an alarm in Reggy's head; he'd learns to sense these things after fifteen years in the force, and he was proved right the next moment.
"Asshole alert," Brad muttered loudly and Reggy stepped a little closer to Kriss protectively.
"Hi Casimir," Kriss said unenthusiastically, not returning the smile.
Casimir stopped in front of him, completely ignoring the others. "God, how long has it been?"
"It's been a while."
"You're looking good," Casimir said appreciatively, his eyes wandering down Kriss's body and Kriss felt Reggy tense beside him. "Are you seeing anyone at the moment?"
"Yes he is," Reggy interjected firmly.
Kriss couldn't help smiling at Reggy's possessiveness. "Casimir this is Reggy, my partner, Reggy this is Casimir, an old....acquaintance." Casimir had been eying Reggy distastefully, like something he'd find on the bottom of his shoe, but looked back at Kriss quickly when he heard his introduction.
"Acquaintance?" he smirked, "we were a lot more than that Kriss. Why don't you give me a call sometime? I don't mind sharing."
"No, but I do," Reggy said fiercely, putting an arm around Kriss who leans into him and gave him a reassuring smile.
"Sorry Casimir," Kriss said cheerily, "but I wouldn't date you again if you paid me. Anyway, I'm with Reggy now."
Casimir looked Reggy up and down sceptically. "What's he got that I haven't?"
"Hmm, let me think," Kriss put a finger to his mouth and pretended to ponder the question. "Well, he's kind, gentle, funny, loyal, generous, great in bed.....in fact he's everything you're not. Now, if you'll excuse us, we've got celebrating to do."
The others were desperately trying to contain their laughter as Casimir looked at him indignantly for a moment, then stalked off.
"That was awesome Kriss," Greg chuckled.
Reggy pulled Kriss close and hugged him. "Great in bed huh?" he said in Kriss's ear.
"You'd better believe it," Kriss smirked.
The club became slightly less crowded and slightly more rowdy as the late night became an early morning. Despite the alcohol consumed, all six of them remained relatively sober although it did mean frequent trips to the bathroom. Reggy was waiting patiently for Kriss to return after having gone several minutes ago.
His gaze wandered across to where the restrooms were and his eyes immediately narrowed when he saw that Kriss had been cornered by Casimir on his way back out. Casimir seemed to be talking quite intensely but Kriss was very clearly not interested in what he had to say. As Reggy watched, Kriss tried to move past Casimir who then grabbed hold of his arm firmly.
Reggy felt white-hot fury bubble up inside him and quickly started moving towards them. Greg caught sight of Reggy's expression and followed his gaze, eyebrows rising as he took in the scene. Figuring Reggy might need back-up, he took off after him. Kip, Kenney, and Brad looked confused at their sudden departure before noticing who they were heading for.
"I'll fucking kill him," Brad said venomously as they all got up to follow.
"I think Reggy's gonna take care of that," Kip said grimly.
Reggy had almost reached them and could now make out what was being said.
"You'd better let go of my arm Casimir, or so help me God..."
"Oh come on Kriss," Casimir slurred as he pressed his body closer, the stench of alcohol on his breath, "I know you still have feelings for me...admit it."
"If you seriously believe that then you're more deluded than I thought," Kriss said icily. "I'm not the person you used to know anymore and I love Reggy. Now let me go."
"I suggest you do as he says," Reggy said loudly behind Casimir, seeing a brief look of relief cross Kriss's face. Kriss was perfectly capable of taking care of himself but Casimir was a lot bulkier in stature so he had a weight advantage.
"Or what?" Casimir challenged, his lip curling derisively.
In an instant, Reggy had Casimir up against the wall with his arm pinned behind his back painfully. Greg arrived at that point, followed shortly by Kenney, Kip, and Brad. Once they were satisfied that Kriss was unharmed they turned to enjoy Casimir's obvious discomfort.
"You'd better let me go before I call the cops," Casimir warned breathlessly and Kriss was pleased to hear his voice tremble slightly.
There were several snorts as Reggy pulled his badge out of his pocket and slammed it on the wall in front of Casimir's face, making him jump. Then he twisted Casimir's arm higher so that he let out a squeak of pain.
"Now, I'm only gonna tell you this once," Reggy said, his voice dangerously soft. "If you ever come near Kriss again, police officer or not, I'll shoot your fucking balls off. Got it?"
Casimir nodded, fear evident in his eyes, and Reggy released him roughly. As Casimir began to hurry away Kriss called to him, moving out of the supportive huddle which his friends had created and ignoring their concerned glances.
"Hey Casimir, wait a minute. I need to give you something."
Reggy frowned and Casimir's expression was a mixture of confusion and a little hope as Kriss approached him. "What?"
Without another word Kriss drew back his fist and punched Casimir hard in the face, hearing a satisfying crack. Casimir stumbled backwards, clutching his bleeding nose and Kriss shook his hand with a grimace.
"Hey, that's assault," Casimir yelled and pointed at the others. "You all saw that."
"Saw what?" Greg asked innocently, turning to Kenney. "Did you see anything?"
"No, I didn't see a thing. Kip?"
"Nope, I must have been looking the other way."
"Oh, what are the odds?"
There were several sniggers of amusement.
"Just get the fuck outta here Casimir," Reggy spat.
Casimir muttered mutinously and headed for the exit, swaying slightly as he threw the door open furiously. As soon as he'd gone Reggy was instantly at Kriss's side, checking him over and examining his bruised hand carefully.
"Nice right hook Kriss," Greg said appreciatively.
Kriss turned to him and grinned. "I've owed him that for a long time."
"Too bad we couldn't kill him," Brad said, sounding disappointed. "We would have been doing the world a favor."
Kriss shook his head in amusement then hissed in pain as Reggy gently flexed his fingers.
"Sorry," Reggy whispered. "Greg, can you go and ask the bartender for some ice please? We need to keep the swelling down."
"I live to serve."
Kriss raised his eyebrows at Reggy with a grin. "Are you after my job?"
"I've had to deal with my fair share of fist fights Kriss. You know, you could have broken something."
"I did," Kriss smirked, "...Casimir's nose."