GOOD DEEDS CAN BACKFIRE
Bodie comes to the rescue of a perfect stranger and saves her life. The lady is happy; really happy. Bodie, however, really does not want her attention. Doyle comes up with an idea to get rid of her.
A first time story.
Written: April 2015. Word count: 3,515.
Hands in pockets, Bodie wandered along the street. He had a rare evening to himself, Doyle having arranged a date with Susie. Bodie could have joined them and double-dated with one of Susie's friends, but he wasn't keen on Susie, a little of her went a long way. To be honest he couldn't see what Doyle saw in her - not even the obvious! So he'd made an excuse, invented something he'd promised to do, given Doyle a look when he'd just raised and eyebrow and laughed his knowing laugh and waved Doyle off.
Now here he was alone on a late summer evening, just wandering down to the nearest pub. He turned a corner and saw a woman, her head in a book, about to step of the pavement right into the path of an HGV.
"Bleedin' hell!" He raced towards her, grabbed her arm and pulled her to safety. Another second and . . . "Careful, love," he said, gripping her slightly more tightly than perhaps was necessary. He saw death and destruction every day in his job; he even caused it; he should be used to it, he was used to it. However, seeing a perfectly innocent woman about to be killed right in front of him had, to his surprise, shaken him somewhat.
The woman who had dropped her book as he had grabbed her, now clung to him and stared wide-eyed and open-mouthed as the HGV pounded past them. "Oh, my God," she murmured. "Oh. My. God. I . . . I nearly . . . Thank you. Thank you! Thank you! You saved my life. You're a hero. You're my hero," she added, turning her attention to gazing up at Bodie.
Bodie found himself more than a bit embarrassed by quite how fulsome she was being. Okay, so he had saved her life, but it wasn't as if he had risked his to do so. He had simply pulled her back from the road; he hadn't dashed into the road to grab her. "That's okay, love," he said, finally letting go of her arm. "Anyone would have done the same."
"Oh, no they wouldn't. People don't help other people today. It's too much trouble. You really are a hero," she gushed, as she went on gazing up at him. She wasn't bad looking; in fact she was very pretty. She had blonde curls, big blue eyes and very kissable lips; she had too much make-up on, but most birds these days did wear too much. She wore a nicely fitting dress which revealed just enough to be tempting, but wasn't slutty; she was a good few inches shorter than Bodie, even in heels, slim without being thin and had a fairly posh voice, any breathing man would go for her.
And Bodie was a breathing man, but he was also still a bit embarrassed by quite how effusive she was being. He shrugged and put his hands into his pockets. "You okay now?" he asked.
She nodded, although to his eyes she looked rather pale beneath her make-up. "Yes, yes, thank you . . . ?" she trailed off and raised a questioning eyebrow.
"Bodie," he said.
"Just Bodie?" She smiled and raised a hand to brush her hair back; he noticed she was trembling slightly.
He nodded. "Yeah. Just Bodie. Don't like my Christian names," he added.
"I'm Hannah. Hannah Harpingdon." She held out her hand. After a second or two he took it and shook it; it fitted nicely in his. "And you really must let me buy you a drink to say thank you."
"There's no need. Really. All I did was -"
"To save my life." The effusiveness faded and she swallowed hard several times and he noticed she was trembling somewhat more. Shock often hit people a bit or even a fair bit after the event. She looked as though she needed a drink. Oh, well, he guessed he could extend his 'good Samaritan' act a bit further. It wouldn't be hard sitting and looking at her across a table.
"Okay. Thanks," he said. "There's a pretty good pub around the corner; I go there quite often. Come on," he put his arm around her shoulders; she really had started to tremble. "You look as you need a stiff brandy."
She leant against him just a little. "Thank you, Bodie. I rather think I do."
In spite of her protests, Bodie led Hannah to a table and left her to fetch them both a drink. She sipped the brandy and slowly some colour began to filter back into her cheeks and the trembling stopped. Bodie downed his whisky in two swallows and made no objection, once she started to look a bit better, to her offer of another.
"Look, Bodie," she said, sitting back down and putting his whisky and a glass of white wine for herself down. "I know you don't think you did much, maybe you make a habit of saving people's lives." She laughed lightly; it was a nice laugh.
"Thanks. Not exactly a habit," Bodie said.
She smiled. "Anyway, you might not think you did a lot, but to me . . . Well, I really am grateful and . . . Would you have dinner with me? I really feel a drink isn't enough to say 'thank you' properly."
Bodie stared at her. Why the hell not? After all he was at a loose end. "Okay, thanks. That'd be nice."
THE NEXT DAY
"So what did you get up last night?" Doyle asked, as they sat side by side cleaning their guns.
"Saved a damsel in distress." Doyle laughed. "No, mate. I did, really." And Bodie told Doyle about it. "She was really grateful," he ended with.
"Yeah, I bet she was. Bet you took advantage of her gratefulness, didn't you?" Doyle laughed his dirty laugh and gave Bodie a knowing look.
"Actually," Bodie said, pushing the chamber of his gun back and forth before reholstering it. "I didn't."
"She didn't offer to come across then?"
Bodie shrugged. "She did; I declined."
Doyle stared at him, surprise obvious on his face. "Why the hell'd you do that? You feeling all right, Bodie? Want me to call a doctor?" he laughed again, but beneath the laughter Bodie saw more than a hint of seriousness and even a flash of concern.
He grinned at Doyle and shrugged. "Didn't feel like it, I guess. Too bloody hot! That wasn't the reason; it wasn't even that he hadn't fancied her; he had - what wasn't there to fancy? It was just . . . Well, to be honest he couldn't put his finger on it, not really. There had just been something about Hannah Harpingdon that had made him hesitate and finally decline her offer. An intensity that he wasn't sure he liked.
Doyle nodded and put his own gun away. "You're bloody right there. Far too hot to sleep with anyone else."
"Oh, so the lovely Susie didn't come across. Poor Raymond." He patted Doyle's thigh.
Doyle shrugged. "The so-called 'lovely' Susie and me had a blazing row in the restaurant. She accused me of not paying her enough attention; of not ringing her enough; of always working or being with you."
Bodie shrugged. "None of which you could deny." Doyle laughed. "Ah, well, plenty more where she came from. How about we go out tonight? Drinks, dinner, forget all about birds."
Doyle smiled and nodded. "You're on!" Then his look became a little more serious and he said, "You know, Bodie, sometimes I -"
He fell silent as Cowley came into the room; he was frowning and his frown deepened as he saw Bodie. "There you are, Bodie. What have you been up to with the minister's daughter?"
Bodie and Doyle had both stood up when Cowley had gone into the room and now looked at one another. "Bodie?" Doyle asked.
Bodie frowned and then said. "Oh, bleedin' hell. I thought I recognised the surname. Sir, whatever the minister said I -"
"The minister is full of praise for you, Bodie. As is Miss Harpingdon who happens to be downstairs; apparently she wants to ask her," he paused and for a moment his lips twitched, "hero something."
Bodie groaned. "Oh, God, she's not still calling me that, is she? Look, sir, all I did was to grab her and stop her from walking out in front of an HGV. I didn't do anything to warrant being called a hero."
"Yes, well. Miss Harpingdon sees it in quite a different light, and the minister was more effusive than I have ever heard him. Now you know I don't approve of your conducting your private business here, but in the circumstances, I am prepared to overlook it - this time," he added.
"But, sir, there is no personal business. I saved her life; she bought me dinner; I walked her home; we shook hands and said goodnight. I never expected to see her again."
"Och, well, whatever you expected or didn't expect, she's downstairs and you are, for once, going to be a gentleman and see her." He made his way over to the phone, punched in a number and said, "Terry, show Miss Harpingdon up to my office, please."
"Your office, sir?"
"Aye, Bodie. My office; where I will also be."
"Mind if I tag along too," Doyle asked lightly.
Bodie shot him a look. However, Cowley nodded. "Aye, Doyle, given I need to talk to you and Master Bodie here about an assignment you may also come along." Cowley turned and headed towards the door.
Doyle grinned. "Come on then, hero." He sauntered after Cowley.
Bodie sighed and trudged behind both of them.
"Good morning to you, Miss Harpingdon," Cowley said, waving her to a chair.
"Thank you, Mr. Cowley. I do hope you didn't mind me coming to see Bodie. However, when I told Daddy about the incident, about Bodie saving my life," she turned big eyes on Bodie and smiled. "And told him his name and described him, he said he thought he knew him. Once he told me the man he had in mind worked for CI5, I knew it had to be my hero." Again she turned to look at Bodie. From behind him, Bodie heard Doyle snort softly. "And so I had to come and thank him again. He saved my life."
"Aye, Miss Harpingdon, so I understand. I like to think I train my boys well."
She smiled. "You do, Mr. Cowley. You really do. Now I know I shouldn't really be here. Daddy said ordinary people couldn't just walk in and out of the building and I won't do it again. However, I wanted to come and ask Bodie if he wanted to come to the opera with me tonight. Daddy has a box - he won't be there," she added gazing at Bodie.
The opera? The opera? Bodie didn't dare look at Cowley or at Doyle.
"Well, Bodie," Cowley said. "Don't keep Miss Harpingdon waiting; answer her."
Bodie forced a smile onto his face. "Thanks, Hann - Miss Harpingdon," he corrected.
"Hannah," she said firmly. "You save my life; you get to call me Hannah."
He smiled again. "As I was saying, thanks, Hannah, but you see me and Ray," he nodded to where Doyle lounged against the bookcase, "already have plans for tonight, right, Ray?" He shot Doyle a look and held his breath. He thought Doyle would go along with him, but sometimes you never could tell what Raymond Doyle would do from one minute to the next.
Doyle pushed himself upright and nodded. "Yeah, that's right, mate. Plans."
"Oh, dear, that's . . . Oh, I know. You could come along as well, Mr. Doyle. Daddy's box is easily big enough for four of us. You could bring your girlfriend. Oh, Bodie, please do say yes."
Bodie and Doyle glanced at one another and Doyle shrugged. Bodie hid a sigh and turned back to Hannah. "Thanks, Hannah," he said through slightly gritted teeth. "That would be nice."
Her smile lit up her face and she clapped her hands together once. "Oh, good. Thank you. We'll have a lovely evening. We'll have supper afterwards. I'll send three tickets round as soon as I get back. I'll see you later, Bodie," she said, as she stood up. "My hero," she added, beaming at him. Then she turned to Cowley. "Thank you, Mr. Cowley," she said. "And I promise you I won't disturb you again; I won't just turn up. Bye for now, Bodie. Mr. Doyle," she nodded at Doyle.
"Miss Harpingdon," Doyle said, moving to open the door for her.
"Well," Cowley said, when the door closed behind her. "I don't make a habit, as you know, Bodie, of interfering with my agents' private lives. However, just remember this: she is the minister's only daughter; his only child in fact, and his wife sadly died last year. Remember that, Bodie."
"Yes, sir. And it's not as if - Yes, sir," Bodie said swiftly. "Now about this assignment . . ."
TWO MONTHS LATER
Bodie and Doyle sat in a third floor room in a condemned block of flats. It was Doyle's turn to stare out of the window through the binoculars and Bodie's turn to make the tea.
"I don't know how much longer I can put up with this, Ray," Bodie said.
"For as long as Cowley tells us we have to," Doyle said, glancing at Bodie for a moment.
Bodie rolled his eyes. "I don't mean this. God, this can go on for as long as the Cow wants it to; the longer the better."
"Ah," Doyle said, his tone knowing. "You mean . . ."
Bodie sighed and trudged over to the window with two mugs in his hands. "Yeah, I mean the oh-so-demanding-somewhat-dotty Miss Hannah Harpingdon." He slumped down into a chair.
"Reckon the Old Man's getting tired of it as well. But what can he say? She is the minister's daughter." Doyle blew on his tea.
"Half a dozen times now she's just turned up when we've been on the job. On the job, Doyle. Half a bloody dozen times. How does she even know where we are?"
"Maybe she's having you followed." Doyle laughed.
Bodie shot him a look. "Don't joke about it. The thought had crossed my mind more than once. I'm becoming paranoid, Ray."
Doyle flashed him a sympathetic look and all hints of teasing fled from his face. "Have you thought of actually talking to her, Bodie? Telling you're not . . . Well, not interested in her like that?"
Bodie sighed. "I've tried. But she doesn't hear. Doesn't want to hear, I guess. All she wants to do is follow me around, buy me things, show up with coffee and cakes when we're working and -"
"Call you 'my hero'?" Although Doyle said it in a joking tone, Bodie clearly heard the edge of sympathy in his partner's voice.
"Yeah. God, it's got to the stage where I almost wish I'd let her walk under the HGV."
"Bodie!" Doyle shot him a shocked look.
Bodie sighed. "I know; I don't really mean that. It's just . .. What am I going to do, Ray? Come on, you're meant to be the bright one; you're meant to be the one with ideas; you tell me what to do."
Doyle put his head on one side and stared at him for a moment, he seemed to be seriously considering something. Then he shrugged and grabbed his RT. "Lewis? You and Caine there? Bodie and me are gonna check out something, so keep an eye on the house, will you? . . . Yeah, about twenty minutes . . . Thanks, mate." He flicked the RT off and put it and the binoculars down.
He stared at Bodie again. "Okay, I've got an idea."
"Not sure you'll like it."
"Oh, I will, Ray. I will!"
Doyle shrugged, leant forward, put his hand on Bodie's knee and said quietly, "Okay. Look, she's gonna turn up here, ain't she? Any time now?"
"You can count on it. It's almost lunch time; no doubt she'll turn up with sandwiches."
"Okay. So what would happen if," Doyle trailed off, licked his bottom lip, looked away from Bodie for a moment, before looking back. "If she caught us in a clinch?"
Bodie stared at him. "You and me?"
Doyle nodded. "Yeah. Kissing," he added, his voice soft. "Reckon that would be enough to get rid of her, don't you? Reckon she'd get the message."
Bodie swallowed. As ideas went it wasn't the worst he'd ever heard. "Reckon it would," he said. "Could you?"
"Kiss you?" Bodie nodded curtly. Doyle shrugged. "Yeah. Could you?"
Bodie hesitated for a second. He'd kissed plenty of people he hadn't even liked, let alone fancied. He nodded. "Yeah, sunshine, reckon I could."
"Good. Because look," he nodded towards the window, "Miss Harpingdon's on her way. Come on," Doyle stood up, pulled Bodie to his feet, put his arms around his neck and tipped his head back a little clearly offering Bodie his mouth to do what he wanted with.
Bodie didn't hesitate. He put his arms around Doyle's waist, pulled him nearer to him and put his mouth on his and began to kiss him. As they kissed Bodie waited for the awkwardness to creep in along with the distaste or even a stronger emotion. However, instead it felt right; it felt more than just 'right' it felt bloody perfect. Doyle tasted of tea and the woodland aftershave he favoured. He fitted into Bodie's embrace and as he pressed himself a bit closer to Bodie, Bodie for a moment wondered what it would be like to kiss him when he was naked.
So stunned by the thought he began to pull away. However, Doyle tightened his embrace and deepened the kiss, parting his lips beneath Bodie's mouth and encouraging Bodie to plunder his mouth with his tongue; Bodie didn't need inviting twice.
Suddenly the sound of the door opening had Bodie pulling Doyle just that bit closer. "Hello, Bodie, I thought I'd - Oh!" Hannah gasped; her shock was clear.
Feeling something of a bastard, but knowing it had been the only way to rid himself of Hannah, Bodie lifted his head, let one arm fall from around Doyle and looked at her. He wondered idly why he didn't feel embarrassed; why he still had one arm around Doyle. He also realised he was tensed for an outpouring of disgust.
However, Hannah just stood there, her hand to her mouth, her eyes wide. Her cheeks were slightly flushed and her surprise was obvious. However, there was a look in her eyes that Bodie couldn't identify, but didn't think was disgust.
"Sorry, love," he said softly. "I didn't . . ." He quite deliberately trailed off.
She shook her head. "No, Bodie. You don't have to apologise. I'm the one who should. You tried more than once to let me down gently. I just . . ." She shrugged. "I guess I didn't want to hear what you were trying to say, but it all makes sense now. I won't bother you again."
"I -" Bodie fell silent when Doyle discreetly nudged him.
"You are still my hero," she said, biting her lip and blinking hard. "You did save my life and I know for you that is a commonplace thing, but for me - Well, it meant a lot. I hope you'll both be happy. And don't worry, I shan't tell Daddy; I won't cause any trouble for you. Goodbye, Bodie."
"Bye, Hannah love," he said gruffly.
She smiled and turned to Doyle. "Goodbye, Mr. Doyle." Bodie realised for the first time that actually she had never called Doyle by his Christian name; she had always called him 'Mr. Doyle'.
Doyle nodded. "Bye, Miss Harpingdon."
She smiled. "Carry on looking after him."
"Oh, I will," Doyle said. "I certainly will." Bodie almost shivered at the hint of sensuality in Doyle's tone.
The door closed behind her and silence fell over the room. Slowly Bodie turned to look at Doyle who stood quite still, which was a rare state for him, just staring at Bodie. "Ray?"
"Yeah, Bodie?" Doyle sounded almost hesitant, worried even.
Bodie swallowed; he could just shrug it off, say something about whose turn was it with the binoculars, make a joke even. Or he could - "That kiss . . ."
"Yeah?" Doyle was still watching him; his look was slightly guarded but also hopeful.
Sod it. Why bother talking? Bodie put his other arm back around Doyle and pulled him nearer to him.
He was about to begin kissing Doyle again when Doyle gave him a cheeky look, fluttered his eyelashes and said in his saccharine-sweet tone, "My hero."
"Daft bugger," Bodie said, yanking Doyle as close to him as he could get him before he kissed him hard!
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