Characters: Dee, Ryo, Ted, Drake, JJ.
Setting: After Vol. 7.
Summary: Dee’s birthday has gone from bad to worse thanks to a domestic disaster.
Word Count: 1040
Written For: Theme Prompt: 006 – Unexpected Company at fandomweekly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own FAKE, or the characters. They belong to the wonderful Sanami Matoh.
Some days Dee’s life just sucked beyond belief. He stared numbly at the ruins of his kitchen, and what would have been his lunch now splattered all over everything. What had he ever done that was so bad he deserved this? He racked his brain but couldn’t come up with anything; the universe must just really hate him.
‘Happy birthday to me,’ he thought glumly. Bad enough that he’d ended up having to work a half-day despite booking the whole day off months in advance, but now this… It was so unfair! There went his plans with Ryo as well; he’d have to call his lover and cancel. His top priority had to be sorting this mess out, and it would most likely take him the rest of the day. “Worst birthday ever,” he muttered as he pulled out his phone to call his partner.
“Hey, babe. It’s me.”
“Dee! Is everything okay?”
“Not even close.” Sighing, Dee shoved one hand through his hair and winced as he dislodged bits of plaster and god knew what else. “I know it’s short notice, but I’m gonna have to cancel on ya.”
“Why? What’s wrong?”
“My new goddamned microwave just blew up on me. I managed to put the fire out, or I think I did, but between the smoke damage and the massive fuckin’ hole it blew in the wall it’s gonna take me the rest of the day just to clean up.” As tempting as it was to abandon everything and simply walk out, leaving the mess to be dealt with later, everywhere smelled of smoke and for all he knew something might still be smouldering. Last thing he needed was to go out and come back to find the whole apartment burned down, along with everything he owned.
“My God!” Ryo gasped. “Were you there when it happened?”
Dee snorted, amused despite himself; Ryo could be such an airhead at times. “Course I was there, dumbass! I was usin’ the damned thing, rustlin’ up a snack for lunch! It didn’t just come on all by itself.”
“Oh. Right. Are you okay though?” Worry was clear in Ryo’s voice. “You weren’t hurt were you?”
“Slightly singed is all, nothin’ serious, but you’d best cancel our reservation ‘cause there’s no way I’ll be able to make it. This is turnin’ out to be one crummy birthday. Look, I gotta go, this mess isn’t gonna clean itself up and I think somethin’ might still be burnin’ somewhere. I just wanted to let ya know so ya wouldn’t show up at the restaurant and think you’d been stood up.”
“Okay, Dee, be careful and if you need anything at all… Well, just give me a call.”
“Thanks, babe. Love you.” Dee hung up. Too bad Ryo was still at work; he could’ve used another pair of hands dealing with the mess. “Stupid modern technology! Had the damned thing less than twenty-four hours!” he muttered angrily as he began the task of cleaning up. “Should’a known there might be somethin’ wrong with it; box looked like the delivery guy bounced it all the way up the fuckin’ stairs.” Just his luck that the elevator was currently out of order. Pulling out his phone again, he took photographs of the damage. He was so getting a refund.
An hour later he’d still barely made a dent in the mess, although he’d managed to manhandle the ruined microwave out onto the fire escape and dealt with a couple of things that had still been smouldering. When someone knocked on the door he groaned in despair; the last thing he needed right now was company. It was probably the landlord, or his downstairs neighbour, wanting to know what the hell was going on up here. He wended his way through the mess and threw the door open.
“Whaddaya wan…” His words trailed off at the unexpected sight.
There in the hallway were Ryo, Ted, Drake, and JJ, their arms laden with cleaning supplies, quick drying plaster, paint, and brushes. He could scarcely believe his eyes.
“What’re you guys doin’ here? Shouldn’t you be at work?”
“I told the Chief what happened,” Ryo said. “He gave us the rest of the day off to help you get sorted out.”
That was a surprise. “I’ll be damned! Guess the old badger must like me after all!” Dee stepped back to let his lover and their friends in; unexpected they might be, but definitely not unwelcome. “Thanks, guys, I really appreciate this.”
“You’d do the same for any of us,” Ted pointed out.
“Besides, it’s your birthday,” JJ piped up. “We couldn’t leave you to deal with this mess all by yourself. That would be mean, and I was going to come over later anyway; I got you a present. Happy birthday, Mr Studly!” The smaller man thrust a neatly wrapped gift into Dee’s grubby hands.
“Uh, thanks, JJ. I’ll open it later.” Dee set it down out of the way; JJ’s crush on him was a pain in the ass, but under the present circumstances he could afford to be more tolerant than usual. He could use all the help he could get.
“Alright,” Ryo said, taking charge. “Let’s get to work, there’s a lot to do if we’re going to get the place cleaned up and the repairs done by tonight. Then we can all go out for drinks and pizza.” He threw a smile Dee’s way. “Not much of a birthday party, but…”
“Right now this is better than any party,” Dee assured him. “Thank you. Times like this you really find out who your friends are.”
As the other detectives spread out and began cleaning, sweeping up plaster rubble, washing down the kitchen units, walls, floor, and even the ceiling, Dee felt his gloomy mood evaporating. Sure, it wasn’t the relaxing birthday he’d been hoping for, his home was in disarray, and his romantic dinner with his lover at their favourite restaurant had gone out the window, but thanks to the guys he worked with, he didn’t have to deal with the disaster all by himself. No matter what happened, he knew they’d always be there for him, and in the end, that was what mattered.