Deeks kept his grin in place even as he wanted to exhale in frustration. Even tipsy Pollard was still hard to crack. But he grasped onto the one sliver of information Pollard had given them. Whatever he was into, he was in it with his friend Colton. And that was a lead they hadn’t had before.
The conversation continued for the next few hours and Deeks watched as the men continued to drink, a lot of the usual guy talk filling the time between rounds. And thankfully the guys were so focused on their drinking that none of them seemed to realize Jimmy had stopped drinking, allowing Deeks to keep up the guise of being drunk while keeping an eye on Pollard.
Kensi’s hand, sliding to his side as she turned in the booth to face him, was warm. Her eyes were bright and her face flushed in the perfectly convincing display of a very drunk and incredibly hot woman. Putting on the display of infatuation towards her didn’t take much of a stretch.
“Are you going to get me another drink?”
With just the trace of expectation in her voice, Kensi tilted her head to the side, her lips curved up in a sultry smile. Deeks shifted his eyes to the guys around the table, noting how they watched with obvious interest. They hadn’t had much luck with the ladies that evening but they sure seemed curious to see how he would do.
With a slow grin, Deeks leaned closer to Kensi, reaching a hand towards her neck. With his palm lightly grazing her neck, Deeks lifted the thick curtain of her hair and bent his head to nuzzle her ear. Kensi’s body shook with an unmistakable shiver that made Deeks grin. She couldn’t hide that involuntary reaction from him. Though based on how her fingers tightened against his side, she wasn’t trying to.
“Your wish is my command,” Deeks said smoothly, his voice low against her ear. He slid out of the booth, tossing Kensi a wink before he circled around the other four guys, pointing at them with a sweeping finger. “Keep an eye on my girl while I’m gone.”
Deeks turned his back on the booth and headed towards the bar, still trying to keep his ears tuned towards Pollard and his friends. He heard Kensi laugh, that loud guffaw that had occasionally terrified him in the past. Funny how he now found it endearing.
The bar was relatively quiet though the stools were full and most of the pool tables were occupied. Deeks ordered another round of drinks for the table, turning around to face the room while bracing his arms on the curved banister of the bar. Seeing the silent juke box in the corner of the bar, he remembered back to his alias, Jimmy Satterlee, a good time guy who liked to sing along to the jukebox.
Motioning to the waitress to take the round of drinks to the table, Deeks pushed off from the bar and sidled over to the jukebox, hitting the button to flip through the song options. He was a bit lost in the shuffle of songs, looking for something that struck him as just right, when he felt Kensi come up behind him, her arms going around his waist, her thumbs slipping through his belt loops to anchor his back to her front. Her chin came to rest on his shoulder and Deeks felt the exhale of her breath against his cheek as she tried to peek over his shoulder to see what he was looking at.
“Don’t tell me you got bored without me,” Deeks teased, turning so he caught Kensi rolling her eyes.
“Javier was getting handsy. I thought it would be better to remove myself from the situation rather than create a possibility where Jimmy might have to kick his ass,” Kensi replied, all trace of tipsy Kacey gone.
Deeks froze, shifting his eyes to catch Kensi’s eyes with his and feeling the flash of anger straighten his back. Kensi’s hand slid midway up his chest, her palm flat and restraining.
“Are you serious? What did he do?”
“Nothing you need to worry about,” Kensi replied smoothly, the pressure of her hand intensifying when he stayed silent. “Seriously, it was nothing. Calm down, cowboy.”
Seething a bit internally, but knowing Kensi was right, Deeks nodded and turned back to the song selections. It was the reality of what they sometimes encountered with their jobs. They couldn’t always just be Kensi and Deeks, friends and partners and so much more. Sometimes they had to be people like Kacey and Jimmy. People with different histories. People they didn’t always want to be.
Finally seeing the right song, Deeks pushed a few quarters in the slot and made his selection quickly so Kensi wouldn’t see it. He turned around, resting back against the jukebox, a wide grin on his face. Kensi raised her eyebrows curiously and he could almost see her ears perking up to listen for the first notes of the song.
Deeks waited too, wanting to see the look on her face when she recognized the song. He didn’t have to wait long. The strains of the guitar wailed just slightly and mixed with the steady drums, the bass setting a slow beat. Kensi’s curious eyes turned soft, her lips melting into a warm smile. And when Deeks led her away from the jukebox to the small opening in the middle of the bar that served as a dance floor, she went willingly into his arms, her body falling against his and moving along seamlessly to the slow turn he took around the floor.
“It’s late in the evening,” Deeks sang quietly in Kensi’s ear, continuing the verse to the end “And then she asks me ‘Do I look alright?’ And I say ‘Yes, you look wonderful tonight.’”
Kensi’s soft and pleased laughter in his ear had him smiling and Deeks kept singly lowly, substituting words where he’d forgotten them, but always remembering the refrain of ‘Darling, you are wonderful tonight.’
Sneaking a quick glance at Kensi’s face, he was surprised to find her head bowed slightly, her eyes fixed on where her hand was on his shoulder, her thumb lightly brushing his collarbone. The look on her face was a mixture of pleasure and concern. Allowing a look back at the table where the guys were, Deeks noted they were still only halfway through the round of drinks he’d sent over.
“What’s going on in that head of yours, Kens?” Deeks murmured, keeping them swaying around the dance floor, the expression on his face in line with Jimmy’s easygoing attitude, even as he wondered and worried over the emotions flickering over Kensi’s face.
“Just trying to get my footing, I guess. We’re partners and then we’re these people. But how does that work with what we are when we aren’t partners? What happens when we go home?” Kensi wondered. A couple months earlier Deeks might have been on high alert at her questioning words. But he recognized them for what they were. They weren’t full of doubt about how they could take that leap to being more than partners. They were full of longing to try and figure out how to make the jump. And how to make it work. Kensi wanting to make them work was worth the months of separation and months of missing her, especially if it meant holding her in his arms now.
“I like to think of it as that we have the best of both worlds,” Deeks replied. “We get to work together as partners on the job, and then we get to go home and be partners in every other way, too. What could be better than that?”
Deeks spoke honestly, knowing that while it was so simple to him to take that leap, it was a little more complicated for Kensi. She was still finding her way and needed him to be patient. And he was more than willing to be patient for her.
“When you say it like that it’s hard to argue with you,” Kensi said wryly.
“Then don’t argue with me,” Deeks replied simply. Kensi’s peal of laughter was genuine.
“It’s sort of my default setting,” Kensi replied, but then she smiled, reaching up to touch his face. “But I’m working on changing that.”
Deeks grinned in response and was working up a teasing response when he caught sight of Corporal Pollard getting up from the booth, phone in hand, walking quickly towards the front door of the bar to exit outside. Keeping up the appearance of a slightly drunk sway, Deeks circled Kensi around, noting the rest of the guys stayed at the booth. Colton watched Pollard go with a slight and lingering interest, but then turned back to the guys.
“Pollard just left in a hurry to take a call,” Deeks replied.
Kensi nodded, alert and all business while keeping step with him as they danced. “What do you think? Follow him?”
“Yeah, but not out the front. Colton might catch on. If we head towards the back we can get out the door by the kitchen and come around, maybe hear who Pollard is talking to.”
Kensi nodded. “Right. So we need a reason for some privacy.”
Deeks was about to ask what Kensi had in mind, but then her lips were on his, her fingers cradling his head and sinking into his hair, and he lost a few seconds in the insistent brush of her mouth on his before he realized Kensi was urging him towards the back of the bar. He couldn’t stop smiling then, matching Kensi kiss for kiss, wrapping an arm around her waist and pushing her against a nearby wall and into the shadow of the hallway and out of sight. Somewhere behind him he was pretty sure he heard Colton yell an encouraging Go Jimmy! from the booth.
Kensi tore her mouth from his, her breathing giving her away as she took an unsteady gulp of air before stepping away from him and running a hand through her hair. Deeks wanted to smooth a hand down her arm but he resisted, knowing they needed to concentrate on the job at hand.
The darkness of the hallway kept them hidden and Deeks followed Kensi, sensing her move silently down the hallway until they reached the exit, the only sound the latch on the door releasing. Kensi slipped into the night and Deeks followed her, flattening his back against the exterior wall of the bar, taking a quick inventory of where they were.
There were a few vehicles parked in the rear of the restaurant, but by the looks of the picnic table and empty cans and cigarette butts this was where most of the bar employees took their breaks from work. Keeping right at Kensi’s heels, Deeks followed her around the edge of the building, ducking down below the few windows and staying in the shadows. As they reached the front of the building Kensi paused, holding up a hand to stop him from bumping into her.
Freezing in place, Deeks listened, finally picking up on what had made Kensi pause. Pollard was on the phone, and talking loudly enough for them to hear.
“I told you, I’ll get you the information. I got my guy on the inside. He knows when the shipments are going to happen. And I can get you better stuff than last time.”
Kensi glanced back at Deeks, an eyebrow raised. The weapons that had already been stolen were enough to take control of a small country. What else did Pollard have his hands into? And who was he talking to?
“Look, there’s no need for threats,” Pollard replied, his voice turning high as he tried to contain obvious fear. “I told you I can deliver and I will. Just give me a couple days and I’ll get you what you need to know. And then you pay me, you get what you want, and we both leave happy.”
When Pollard hung up the phone he sighed heavily, concern creasing his brow. For all his earlier bravado, he was worried about whatever deals he was making. Which made Deeks think it was dangerous and he was in over his head. Pollard’s uncertainty was something they could take advantage of, if the situation presented itself. But first they needed to figure out who he was working for.
After a moment to collect himself, Pollard pocketed his phone and went back inside, the muted sounds of people talking and laughing mixed with the clink of glasses fading as the front door closed. Waiting until she was sure they were alone, Kensi turned around to face Deeks, her eyes narrowed and her voice low.
“What do you think he has up his sleeve?” Kensi asked.
Troubled, Deeks shrugged. “I don’t know. But we need to see if we can figure out who he’s talking to. And I think we should look into his buddy Colton.”
Kensi nodded in agreement, then looked back at the bar. Sensing her question, Deeks shook his head. “We’re not going to get anything else out of them tonight. Pollard is too tense and Colton saw us leave out the back.”
He didn’t mention that it would help Jimmy’s credibility if he showed up the next day with a few stories to tell about his wild night with Kacey. Even if it might make his skin crawl to tell made up stories about Kensi, if it helped his cover he would do it.
“Let’s go meet up with the guys and check in with Eric and see if he can get us anything else to follow,” Kensi suggested. Deeks nodded his agreement and led the way over to his motorcycle, enjoying Kensi’s eyes widen with surprise. Before she could protest or suggest they take the car her alias drove to the bar, Deeks reached into one of the saddlebags and pulled out an extra helmet for her.
Strapping his helmet on and straddling the bike, Deeks started the motorcycle, enjoying the rumble of the engine as it roared and then idled to a purr. Without another word, Kensi got on the back of the motorcycle, cinching the chin strap before she settled behind him, tucking her feet up and reaching around his waist to link her hands together tight and low. Feeling her secure and warm behind him, Deeks took off, allowing a grin on his face at how Kensi’s arms tightened around him and she pressed closer to his back.
They drove into the night, the staccato sounds of the motorcycle fading into the darkness.
Mel M. is a contributor at wikiDeeks.com. Follow her on Twitter: @imahistorian
If you want to read more fanfics from @Imahistorian go to fanfic.net: https://www.fanfiction.net/u/2885391/imahistorian