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What, was "Rudy" on cable last night?

. . . Yes.

happy coffee-face, lounging coffee-face
Eliot Spencer vdistinctive
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75 Godiva, Wednesday night
Eliot was still in full-on "pretend everything is fine" mode, so he was on his couch with Parker and Hardison sat in dignified positions next to him (well, that was the intention, anyway, Parker didn't sit still well even when she was human) and a bowl of popcorn on the coffee table.

They were watching a movie. It wouldn't have been Eliot's first choice, but Parker had seemed slightly more like she was paying attention when he paused on the title while flipping through the options on one of Hardison's streaming services, so he'd settled for it.

About halfway through, he pulled the Hardison bear into his lap.

When the delivery guy showed up with the telegram, he found himself squeezing Hardison hard enough to set off the voice box.

"Wuv you beary much!" Hardison said.

"Shut up," Eliot sniffled. "You saw nothing."

[ooc: for one]

"*chirp?*" Parker nosed at Eliot's hands, then gave another chirp as she sniffed Hardison-bear.

Eliot idly scritched at her head and scooped up a handful of popcorn to offer her. Setting off another declaration of "wuv" from Hardison.

"I know, I know," he said. "It's about baseball. But it's -- I get it, you know?"

He wasn't around in World War II, but he served in the army, and he left loved ones behind to do it. These women might as well be Aimee and Trudy.

Only, you know, playing baseball.


And in a heartbeat, Parker was no longer a ferret. Or clothed.

"More popcorn, please... I love this movie too."

Sorry, Parker, Eliot was going to be staring at you for a bit first.

"I'm gonna need to hug you, now."

Parker gave him a startled look. "Okay?" This didn't happen every day. Other nicely affectionate stuff, but hugging? Not as much. "Are you all right?"

Eliot was pulling her in before she quite finished the second syllable on "okay". He laughed when he heard her question.

"A little better just now, darlin'," he said. "You were a ferret again. Do you remember that?"

Parker leaned into him, because this was nice. Also, she was a little chilly.

"Awwwwww. No! Wait. Sort of?" She frowned, snuggling closer and trying to remember. "Did I ride on Val?"

"Coupla times," Eliot agreed, not letting go yet.

Hardison got squished enough by the hug to let out another faint little "wuv".

"Also Hardison's a teddy bear."

You two left him alone, Parker. Which was fair, considering how often he wandered off on you over the years, and it wasn't their fault, but still."

Parker gave Hardison a mystified look, and snugged him in closer between them. "How does that even work?... Sorry?" She paused and added seriously, "I didn't plan it, I swear. And it wasn't even a holiday, so. No warning, even worse, really sorry?"

"Ain't your fault," Eliot grumped. He stopped squeezing, but he was going to just rest his arms around her, anyway. "Just -- real bad timing. I mighta done a pretty good Nate impression for a coupla days, there."

There was no beer left in the house, for instance. Or in the loft.

And Luke's had been low, until they got their next delivery.

Parker gave him a soft kiss on the lips, and leaned in to play with his hair. "Did it help?" It always looked like it helped Nate, sort of. But, well. Nate.

Eliot snorted, closing his eyes and enjoying the feel of her very nimble, very human fingers on his head. "Yeah, not really. Think I kinda ruined my rep with my latest employee."

You'd ruined that rep with Kanan ages ago, Eliot. For some reason, he kept talking to you anyway.

"I stole your beer," Parker said thoughtfully, swinging one leg over his lap in order to move even closer. "You really had a lot of it, didn't you." Don't do that, Eliot. Nate was nobody's idea of a role model. "I'm glad it didn't work. And I'm glad to be bigger than a cat again. And I'm glad we're home. People get so weird when I'm naked in public." She didn't really *care*, per se, but it made Eliot growl in the not-fun way, and Hardison stare at the ceiling a lot, and get kind of strident with people and mentions of 'personal space.'

"But being naked in my living room is encouraged," Eliot said. He held up the Hardison bear and glared at it, but for the first time since Saturday, there wasn't really any heat in that look. "Now we just gotta wait for the island to give us him back and we'll be set."

Parker kissed the bear on his nose, then got an idea and smooched the little fuzzy lips. "Maybe that will help?" Did you kiss the bear yet, Eliot?

"Pretty sure it's not a sleeping beauty thing."

No. No he did not.

"You didn't kiss me either, did you. I'm pretty sure I'd remember that."

"You wouldn't've sat still long enough."

Also, she was a ferret.

Understandable. If now a source of much teasing in the future.

"Kiss the bear and let's go to bed. Maybe when we wake up we'll have our usual Hardison huggy-bear back."

Eliot gave the bear a despairing look. "It won't be the same."

Whine harder, Eliot.

"Hardison won't mind. He'll be sad you didn't kiss him, Eliot." Because Parker would so tell him later, count on it. "Pleeeeeeeease."

It was a new word she was trying out sometimes.

"I think being a ferret messed with your head," Eliot grumbled. He closed his eyes and sighed dramatically. And leaned in to kiss the bear on the nose.

"I wuv you beary much," the bear said.

"I swear to --"

Parker snickered, hugging Hardison-Bear beary close, and kissed Eliot as a reward. "C'mon, let's go upstairs so I can get warmed up. And you can hug us both."

"I wasn't nearly this obnoxious when I was a wolverine."

The only thing he remembered from being a wolverine was the smell and texture of frozen meat.

Parker snorted, tugging on Eliot's arm as she got up. "Sure. You keep telling yourself that. I'm going to find any video Hardison took of that and make him replay it when he has thumbs again."

Eliot let her pull him to his feet, then promptly wrapped himself loosely around her again. He knew she wasn't into hugs but she was naked and more importantly here and not furry and --

It'd been a long weekend.

"Video of me being bad ass? Sounds like fun."

Wolverines were definitely bad ass.