CODA: A Twist.
2 walked out for their present show off weekend. "Hi, Generals, and Mac."
"Is he with a new company?" one asked.
"No, this is our boss at the lab and he wanted to see." He grinned. "It's a favor so we get a better lunch break next week." The generals all snickered at that. "Did you all get the tapes and stuff?" They all smirked and nodded. "Then let's go look at the toys." He let them inside the building. "Yes, thanks to those who complained that we were falling down on our corporate image, we got a bigger lab this time with more glass and trees." They laughed, smiling at the boy. "Though I'm still not wearing a suit for you guys. Suits suck." He let them into the show room. "Hold on. One's missing. Graham?" he bellowed.
"The other one has it, he said a wire broke last night when it got left outside. Something about now you're attracting squirrels."
1 brought it in a minute later. "The damn wildlife hates us." He let Mac take that one with a smile. "It's smaller. Hi, Generals."
"Hi, Xander," they said, smiling at him.
"Let me check on the snacks." He walked off to check on the meeting room full of food, and then went to security because they called to say Wendy was there. She was beaten up too. "What the hell?" he demanded, pulling her into the light to look her over. "What was it?"
"Two Granths," she moaned.
Xander stared at her. "Even *we* call help for that."
"Yay," she said dryly. "Got bandaids?"
"Of course. Graham, get me the first aid kit." He handed it over since he had already gotten it. "Thank you." He sat her down to work on her injuries. She pouted but let him. "Okay, where?"
"In the city?" She nodded. "We'll deal with it later. Do they have a cult? Usually they do."
"Not so many of them anymore," she admitted. "Faith's in town. I saw her last night."
"We can call her. You rest. Graham, go tell 2 and Mac." He headed for the vault. "And we're taking your SUV, Graham."
"Fine," he agreed. "I'll take your car so you have backup this time."
"Whatever." He got her able to move and helped her out to her bike. "Give me an address."
He nodded. "I can do that." He went back to the vault. "Mac, bad demons."
"Uh-huh." He followed him, gasping at the vault. "How bad are they?"
"Extemely. Complete with a human sacrificing cult included. Wendy got a lot of them and it's the sort of thing that we usually call in backup for. Wanna be backup, Mac?" He grinned and he helped Graham get what he wanted. "Get the two black ones too."
One of the generals walked in and whistled. "This is nice." He stared at Graham when he saluted. "I know who you were, soldier."
"And now we've got two bitchy demons in New York with a sacrificial cult," Xander quipped. "So we're going to handle that." He smiled. "This is the apocalypse vault, General Iwanka."
"I can tell."
"Talk to my nicer half." He carried cases past him. "We've got to handle it before it hits general knowledge by a lot of dead bodies."
"Of course, but I would like to see how those do in combat."
"We have tapes of everything in the ICW closet and the stuff we don't offer. All you have to do is ask," 2 told him. "Need me?"
"I'll have Wendy and Faith."
"And me," Mac told him.
"And him." He grinned. "Do business stuff."
One of the generals leaned out. "He can go help with the higher demons, Xander. It's not a problem. We understand those needs." 2 beamed and grabbed his own favorites, following out to Graham's SUV.
2 walked in with Faith, Wendy with 1 behind them. The cult of worshipers was chanting at the new body on the altar. "Mac," 2 said, with a nod. He nodded, calling for backup to wait outside. He nodded at his twin, then at Graham.
1 pulled out a gas grenade, tossing it at the group of worshipers. It went off and people started to scream and pray harder. The gas knocked them out.
2 moved forward with Mac and Faith, freeing the caged victims for Mac to remove. The one on the altar was barely living so Faith carried her out. Then they locked the warehouse and went after the demons. NYPD wasn't really set up to house demons or deal with major hellspawn. They headed into the antechamber. The spawn were fighting over a new slave girl. "Faith." She got the hands holding the girl and got her to safety while they and Wendy attacked with the weapons. Graham had some. Faith had some she got to use.
They fought back, shielded against things, and then the shields finally failed. One was fading but 1 threw something and it screamed. The other one lunged at him to help it. They got it in the vulnerable back muscles. The other was killed when it lunged for them for taking out his rival/mate. One down the throat from Faith's weapon was enough. Not too many things lived good lives with no brains. It fell and they got out of the way. They stared at the mess, then at Mac, who gave them a dirty look.
"Fire?" Graham suggested.
"Not in the city," Mac ordered. They grimaced at the mess. "Hydrochloric acid?"
"We'd need a shitload," Faith said dryly.
2 snapped his fingers. "Graham, I brought the dissolver." He went to get it and the NYPD guys came in with the EMT's to get the last few victims.
Mac looked. "Those are not victims, they're gassed and they were sacrificing the first victim." They nodded, cuffing them and letting the EMT's check them over.
"Must we? It stinks," Wendy pouted.
Faith stared at her. "You'd rather set a fire?"
"Slayer pyros," 1 teased. He helped Mac and 2 spray the remains down.
"I want to test this stuff in case it ends up stolen," Mac ordered.
"Yes, Great One," 2 quipped. "You can have anything that's left from this batch."
"Thank you. It looks like it'd be handy for those trying to hide their crimes."
1 shrugged. "Won't eat GSR. We know that for a fact."
"Good!" He helped finish cleaning up and they stepped back.
Someone cleared their throat and they turned to find a familiar Detective. "Flack," Mac greeted.
"They weren't people, right?"
"People eating," 2 said.
"Ah. But not human?" They all shook their heads. "The cult?"
"Sacrificing humans to them to make them stronger so they could stay longer and help them ascend to a higher state of power," 1 said. "Look for a lot of MBA's and the like in there."
"Uh-huh." He stared at the knocked out cult then at them. "You two know about this how...?"
"Past history, classified," Graham told him.
"I don't care about you being their gopher, Miller. And yeah, I looked when it started to show up at work." He looked at the three CSI, then at Wendy. "You again."
"ICW," 1 said firmly.
He nodded. "Okay and this is ...their sort of thing?" They all nodded. "Wonderful!"
"Flack, make sure this stuff gets back to the lab for analysis. It can eat remains to confuse crime scenes," Mac ordered, handing it over.
"Sure," he said, smirking at them. "Are there possibly other people stored or something?"
2 looked then pointed. "Any unused remains would be in there. If there's any other living that they thought were cute, they'd be in the cages," he said with another point.
"Okay. Disappear before you guys give us a migraine?"
"They wanted to set it on fire," Faith quipped. She walked past him, pausing to pinch him on the cheek. "You're adorable. Are you good in bed?"
He smirked. "Very but you're dangerous?"
"Only when I want or need to be."
"Faith's a very good friend, Don," 2 told him. "Faith, this is Detective Don Flack, homicide."
"Cool. So we might have to meet professionally if I have ta hunt." She walked out being swishy. "Wendy girl, why haven't you tried to tap that?"
"I showed up being a smartass on a scene and they think I'm dangerous. He did a really good job threatening me to stay away from his pack of CSI."
"Aww, an alpha dog." Faith winked back at him. "Cute too." They walked out together. "Bodies to the east, living slaves to the west," she told the female CSI out there. The twins had described her pretty well. Mac and the twins came out behind her and Wendy. Graham came out last. "What're we doing, boys?"
"Show off weekend," 2 quipped.
"Cool, weapons," Wendy said. "Can we, guys?"
"Generals," Mac warned.
"We can be subtle as bodyguards," Faith decided. They headed after the SUV, the sports car, and were going to have a great time today.
Flack came out, watching them go. "Four other living victims and a few dozen piled corpses, Stella. Sorry."
"What did it?"
"The human cult did it to the things Mac and them dissolved with this stuff," he said, holding up the sprayer bottle. "Mac said he wants to see what the hell it is since it ate the remains of the things."
"Things?" she asked.
"Huge ass things that the wonder twins pulled out of their vault for," he said quietly, staring at her.
"Aw, crap, I hate that stuff."
"That's Wendy's job."
"Oh, yay," she said sarcastically. "Get Danny to study that."
"Sure. Can I.... Go puke?"
"Go. I will be." He left, heading back to the lab. She went to check the bodies. It was bad. The penned up captives were taken to the hospital. Lindsay was there to help process them. She put on some gel to stop up her nose. This was bad. Mac should have to work it too.
Danny looked up as someone walked into the lab, smiling. "Don! Tell me that's a sample on my case?"
"No, it's stuff Mac and the twins were using to dissolve strange crap that was keeping and killing people." He put it on the table. "Stella delegated because she's got about twelve bodies that were partially eaten by the things."
Don nodded. "Yup."
"I got there after they were dead. After they and Mac used artillery from the boys' closet."
"Huh. Okay." He squirted out a sample and put it on a slide, looking at it while another sample ran through the machines. "This is nice." He dropped a drop of blood onto it and it ate it. "Interesting."
"Yeah. Mac wanted it in case it got out."
"Me too!" He let him see what it did to the blood.
"Damn," Don said. He backed up. "So this could be bad?"
"This could be real bad. Let me, Sheldon, and Adam test this stuff. Who's with her?"
"Montana's in the ER helping with the former captives."
"Human cultists too."
"Even better!" He smirked. "You're giving me a headache."
"Me too. So, anyway, Mac's with the twins. That Wendy girl and a new one, named Faith, went with them too."
"So we got two?"
"Yeah and the second hit on me the same way the first one did." Danny smirked at him for that. "I can't help it I'm hot." He walked off. "Mac's probably got his cell."
"Sure. Tell Adam and Sheldon to come here."
"Fine." He went to the other lab where they were working. "Guys, Mac had the twins hand over stuff that can dissolve crime scene evidence. Danny needs help figuring the shit out."
"Really?" Adam asked, all happy now. He had been frowning.
"Really. He's back in lab 2." They went to check that out.
Mac got off the plane with the sample, taking a cab to the crime lab. He walked in and signed in, smiling at the receptionist. "Lab to lab transfer."
"I'll get the lieutenant down for you, Detective." She paged him.
Horatio walked out. "Mac Taylor. How are our former interns?"
"More scary than I imagined when you introduced us but they're hell in the lab and we love them." He held up the sample. "We should talk."
"We can do that." Horatio led him to his office, letting him sit down and put the container on the desk. "What is this interesting thing?" He turned it around to look at the sealed container then opened it to look inside.
"It is something the twins created that will eat blood, fluid, and skin tissue."
"Interesting." He looked at it in the light. "GSR?"
"No. It will not eat that. It will dilute it."
Horatio smirked at him. "Those two are very wicked."
"Yes they are. Especially when they go out to the clubs." Horatio laughed and nodded. "That is your sample. I've got Flack and Danny dropping off one with the agent they selected in DC."
"Very interesting." He paged someone. "Calleigh." She smiled. "The twins created this very interesting liquid that can dissolve crime scenes."
She took it to look at in the light. "That's very interesting. Is it in the open?"
"No," Mac assured her.
"Wonderful. Any reports?" Mac handed over a CD from his pocket. "Awww, I love the twins. I'll tell Speed so he can look it over too." She bounced off with it.
"I've met Abby, who the boys interned with before us, and she scarily is starting to remind me of her," Horatio said, making Mac laugh. "How are they really?"
"The last show off weekend went *very* well. I went as a perk. The generals were amused at me being there with them. And then there was a demon eating people that their human cults were sacrificing. The generals were *very* pleased with the things they hadn't been shown yet." Horatio smirked. "They broke into their apocalypse vault and let their design crew show it off while we went to handle the problem. My lab was a bit pissed that I didn't help them sort out the remains, but I was wanting to see into the vaults myself. If they ever decide to take over? We're doomed."
"Too many would help them if they did," Horatio said.
"Yeah, we saw a few of those. One took one of the profilers Xander interned with to get his attention. Rasputin, one of their stalkers, died and tried to leave them his company." Horatio snickered, still smirking. "Instead Alex argued them down to just giving them the shrine. A lot of pictures all the way back when Sunnydale High was still standing."
He shook his head. "That's probably a bad thing."
"His siblings are safely confined."
"Good!" Horatio leaned back. "So they're working out?"
"They're well liked in the lab. We love the boys. They bring a lot of life to our lab. We give them too many hours to seriously date, but we love the boys."
Speed stomped in. "It eats blood."
"I saw that," Mac assured him with a smile.
"What doesn't it eat?"
Speed shuddered. "Can they destroy that formula?"
"Danny figured out how to replicate it, all but two chemicals. It didn't last as long and it bubbled more, leaving more residue."
"Wonderful," he said grimly. "Tell them I'm going to paddle them."
"You can if you want. They haven't been able to date recently," Mac offered. "They've had overtime." He smiled.
"Good idea. I may come do that." He stomped off shaking his head. "Wolfe!" He came out of his lab. "Help Calleigh and I figure out this formula. It's a crime scene cleaning solution."
"For clean up teams?"
"For criminals. The twins developed it."
"Damn it," he muttered. He did come help. He knew a lot about cleaning products and their formulas.
Horatio and Mac shared a smile then decided to have lunch. They both needed to get out into the sun for a bit.
Don got him and Danny signed in and into the office they needed. "Agent Booth?" Danny asked.
"I am and you must be the two I got told were coming from the cryptic voicemail. Let me get Doctor Brennan over here." He paged her phone and they sat down. She walked in and closed the door. "What is in the container?"
"It is something a certain pair of twins created," Danny said. He handed over the CD and she got the container. "It can eat blood, bone, flesh, slime, ectoplasm, snail slime, everything but GSR. That it only dilutes."
"That's handy," he said, taking the CD to run on his system for her. She came over to look over his shoulder. "The twins did this?" Danny smirked and nodded. "Is it in the open?"
"No," Danny said. "But also on there are the tests where I figured it out to all but two chemicals. It leaves more residue, it bubbles more, and it doesn't have a great shelf life."
"This could be very helpful in my field of skeletal examinations," she told them. "Are they going to sell the formula?"
"They said for something like this, they would let top level labs have the formula," Don assured her. "That's basically you guys, us in Manhattan felony, Miami-Dade's felony since they interned there, and Las Vegas. LAPD might but they have a leak currently." He grinned at the agent. "From the way they talked about you, you might have stupid stories that would make them blush and quit fussing at things?"
"I may have two or three," he admitted. "Why?"
"They fussed over my last skinned knee like I was their cub," Don said.
Agent Seeley Booth smirked. "They've never been mothered outside what Willow did to them, but they will fuss over their pack."
"Pack?" Danny asked.
"Pack?" Brennan echoed.
"They do tend to gather a family pack around them," Booth said. "That means it's a compliment, but hand them candy or make them pout. No one I know has ever gotten them to quit fussing if they wanted to."
Seeley smirked. "It's good that you're considered pack."
"Doesn't Zach know these twins?" Brennan asked.
"Yes," Danny said. "They said if I saw you to tell you to say hi for them since he was working and couldn't take their call last weekend."
"I can do that. Hodgins is going to see him tonight." She went back to the information. "Is the formula on here?"
"Yes," Danny said, smiling when she snatched the CD and walked off with it and the sample. "So, anyway," he said dryly, cracking Boothe up.
"Yeah, they're goofy, fun loving, get put down by the girls in their life a lot, and you should thank God you never met Anya."
"Is she like Faith and Wendy? We've met them."
"No. Anya was more blunt than Brennan but her things were sex and money. That's a lot of what she talked about, loudly, without caring who overheard her critiques and needs." They both groaned. "The sort who made them pay for things."
"Was she like the others they draw?" Don asked. "I got a list of those from the BAU guys when they came up to us."
"No, well... Maybe. She was in vengeance. She punished men who cheated on women."
Danny moaned. "So this trend of their dating bad girls goes back how far?"
"As far as I know, from birth."
"Then I'm gonna make sure they do all the overtime they can," Danny decided. He stood up and shook the agent's hand. "Have fun with that."
"I can probably do that."
Don shook his hand too. "Write more letters. They said to. They said it's hard when Danny and Mac make them do overtime so they can't get anyone to sleep with them." He walked off, going to keep Danny out of trouble in case the twins' bad habits had rubbed off on him too. Don himself had been contaminated slightly with his last one being an arsonist. And he never spent time with the boys.
Seeley followed Brennan to the lab, watching his squints and pack play with the new chemical toy. The twins had given them a nice present for his birthday.
"Booth, we found a card in the carrier," Hodgins said, handing it over.
Seeley grinned as he opened it, laughing at the boys' humor. Yeah, they were still Xanders. They had sent him stripping succuba on a card. He put it into his interior jacket pocket. He loved those two idiots.
2 looked around then snuck his twin out of the lab. Mac wasn't back yet. Stella was on a scene. Danny and Don had just landed so they weren't back yet, and hadn't called to check in. So yeah, they could go clubbing tonight!
Hawkes saw them and sighed. "Adam, the twins look like they're going to find more psychotic women."
"Or men, they are bi," Adam said absently. "Warn dispatch just in case. Mac said to if they snuck off while he wasn't here."
"Maybe we should set them up," Sheldon said, dialing that number. "It's Doctor Hawkes. We were told to warn you if CSI Harris, both of them, were headed out to the clubs?" She reported on that and told him why. "Thank you." He hung up. "They've got a whole incident report form for them?"
Adam looked back at him. "Yeah, they need it. Their last one was going to bomb us to make us give them back. They got stopped by a traffic cop." Hawkes moaned, shaking his head. "So yeah, they want warned. Who knows what this one will have." He got back to work. Lindsey walked in. "We might have scenes later since the boys are going out."
"What boys?" she asked.
"The twins," Hawkes told her.
"Oh, them." She shrugged. "I'm sure they can handle it."
Adam looked at her. "Maybe but it's better to be forewarned than have to suddenly deal with something."
"Yay." She got to work as well. "Where are Danny and Mac?"
"Mac went to hand a sample to Miami and Danny took Don to help him do the same in DC," Sheldon told her.
"Something the twins came up with that eats body and fluid evidence on crime scenes but doesn't leave a trace," Adam said. "It's neat stuff, but not real good for the lab."
"Why were they working on that? They design weapons."
"And that can be handy for special ops work," Sheldon pointed out. "They agreed to hand the formula over to some top level labs that wouldn't leak it into the open."
"I guess that's nice of them. Still, why do it?"
"It probably came in handy during handling things in Africa," Adam said dryly. "They had a few times when they were attacked."
"Did they date them too?" she sneered.
"No, but they did end up near some civil wars," Sheldon said, making her shudder. "That girl Wendy is from Somalia and it's starting back up there. When they were helping her, that village got attacked and they had to help handle it."
"I still like the pirates that thought they were aid workers," Adam said, shooting a grin at him. "Sheldon, your plant sample is annoying. I need the textbook."
"I can get it for you." He went to do that.
"Pirates?" she asked. "Like the ones on the news?"
"Yes. They thought the twins were aid workers and took them hostage. They were going to ransom them. Then one of them got real pissed at it." Adam shrugged. "It seemed to work. The pirates gave up or died." She shuddered. "They said it wasn't pretty, Lindsey, but they protected a lot of people when they got attacked. They also got to places after the attacks and still kick their own butts over that." She slumped. "The twins are very protective of those they're helping." He got back to work once Sheldon handed over the textbook. "Aloe."
Sheldon looked and nodded. "Okay, what is aloe plant doing in an alley in the Lower East Side?"
"No clue," he said, handing it over. "Any on the skin from a lotion?"
"I'll go ask Sid. Thanks, Adam." He walked out to put the book back and go down to the morgue.
Adam looked at her. "They still have nightmares from walking into a few villages they didn't get to in time," he said quietly. "When Alex was crashed in the break room last month, Stella woke him up from one." She shuddered. "They have never been anything but protective and Mac treats that like military service time."
"I guess it sounds like it."
"Yeah, it does," Don said from the doorway. "The twins escape?"
"Clubbing we think. Mac said to warn dispatch so Sheldon did."
"Good!" Danny went to check ballistics then come back. He leaned in. "They left sixteen billion reports again and two samples?"
"I just left the samples," Lindsey admitted.
"That's fine. They can do them tomorrow," Don decided. "We should all rest in case they get kidnaped again." He walked off shaking his head. "That agent guy, he was pretty decent."
"He was," Danny agreed. "Not like the local Feds that take over scenes." They went to log out, since traveling was covered for the lab, and had dinner then went to their homes. Danny definitely needed rest in case one of the twins caused a problem.
2 broke the officer trying to stop him from crossing the barrier's arm and walked over him. "Mac, he needs a medic, and that's not 1."
Mac stared at him. "Don't injure the patrol cops."
"You tried to tell me my twin was dead!" he shouted back. "It's a clean break and it'll heal in four weeks." He looked at the burned remains, then at him. "Not our cars either. It's an Aston Martin but it's a later version than the classic we drive."
"Boy!" someone shouted.
"We thought it was his twin," Mac shouted back.
"He still hurt my officer!" he shouted back, stomping over. Xander took him down and stared at him coldly. "What the hell are you!"
"Pissed as shit that someone created a scene meant to make people think my twin was dead," he said coolly. "I didn't hurt him that much. It's a clean break. He'll be fine." He let the guy go and walked back over to the car. He walked around it, shaking his head. "Skull's shaped wrong. Ours isn't as broad across." He kept walking around it. "Can't be our car anyway, the hunting packs are in fire and bomb proof inserts." He came back to stare at Mac. "He's pissed somewhere," he admitted. "I can't tell where but he's going to lose it soon." He looked at the car, then shrugged.
"It wasn't someone we dated either. They'd know not to piss me off. He's the angry one but I'm creative and deadly in my own right." He walked off considering it, walking over that officer again. "There's a special bond between twins, Officer Hays," he said, reading it off his name tag. "You can't get between them when one's in danger. They'll go through you. But I'll pay for the medical bills to get that casted and x-rayed." He got into his car and sped off. "Why did we not keep the GPS on him?"
Mac looked at the horrified supervisor. "He's panicked about his twin brother," he said calmly, helping him up. "They're my ballistics techs." He went to help the officer as well. He checked his arm. "That is a very minor break and you should be able to work since he only broke the smaller bone." The officer stared at him. "Really. He's sorry but he's in a snit over his brother being taken."
"They're like those weird twins, aren't they? Psychic and all that?"
"Only very strong emotional spikes go between them. Right now, he's more angry and upset. If he finds whoever did this first, he's going to create a bigger scene to process." They nodded and let the other CSI in. "Alex said it's not Xander." They sighed in relief. "It's the wrong car, the head's in the wrong shape. Alex is also presently going to destroy someone. Soon." They got to work faster. They had to get there before he did. With the artillery he had access to? Mac decided to call Graham. "Miller, Taylor. 1's been taken by someone. They set up a fake scene with a burned male in an Aston Martin. He already has. He said it's not him, the wrong car year, and he's pissed as hell. Can you lock the vaults?" He smiled. "Thank you." He hung up. "He's going to get Faith to help him." They all groaned. "But Miller won't let him into the company's vaults."
"He moonlights?" the shift commander demanded.
"They run a weapons design firm," Stella said, looking at him. "They mostly do artillery."
"Oh, shit," he said, looking horrified at Mac. Mac nodded. "Handcuff him in the lab."
"We're going to but for right now, he's talking to sources we can't to get information from. That one I have GPS on. I dropped another dot on him when he showed up."
"Thank God." He walked off, taking his guy to the ER.
"Flack, find him once he's done questioning, tail him, bring him back to the lab or call me for backup if he's going immediately. I don't care who he destroys to get his twin back."
Don nodded. "I can do that. Any idea where he is?"
"Midtown probably but I've got a GPS dot on him."
Don smirked and went to his car, getting the coordinates sent to him. A patrol gave him a ride and it was nice. They ran into Xander coming out of a demon bar, thankfully. He got out and the patrol car took off. "Xander." He looked up. "Mac wants you protected."
"They're not coming after me."
"So? He thinks you need to destroy stuff to get him back. He said do it from the lab or I'm with you the whole way. If we're going now to call him and let him back us up."
Xander stared at him. "What if it hinges on strange things?"
"Yay." He looked around. "No Faith?"
"Her first big work project isn't going well and she had to redo it on the losers who work with her."
"Ah." He nodded. "Then we'll go." Xander sighed but nodded, taking him to the car. He slid in and looked it over. "This is sweet."
"It was our third car change in a year," he admitted. "We went with something so expensive they wouldn't want to blow it up."
"I can see why, kid." He smiled. "How many more demon bars?"
"One. One of the local head guys and it's like mafia."
"Will they need to be cuffed?"
"No, I'll have an axe." He drove there, contemplating his twin's predicament. He knew who had him but not where. Someone seriously wanted to piss him off again.
"So, date?" Don asked.
"No. Leads back to Wolfram and Hart and their shutdown for stupidity."
"Okay. So this is payback by one of the lawyers you turned in?"
"Yup. And they're going to be extra sorry." He pulled into the bar's parking lot and got out, getting behind the seat to pull something out. It was a battle axe. Single headed, long handled, shiny silver with tracings all down it. He walked inside and the bartender glared. "Stuff it, bitch." He walked into the back area. Two guards tried to stop him but the demons saw the axe, saw the look on his face, and moved. Quickly. "Good idea." He walked in and paused then headed for his target. A few moaned. "I'm not here for you today and I'm not here to kill him. Yet. Unless he's helping the reason that my twin was taken?"
"I heard he was killed," the target demon said. "I'm sorry for his loss. You were each other's sanity."
"It was a play scene. Wrong car, since I'm driving it, and not him." The demon gave him a horrified look. Xander leaned down, axe on the table. "But I know who did it and you know where they'd be."
The demon swallowed the spit from his stalk mouth. His eye stalks were wobbling. "I may. Who? I'd rather not be killed."
Xander smiled. "It's for incentive. No one seems to believe I'm me without an axe in my hand anymore." He stood up. "Karten."
"Aw, damnation," he muttered.
"Yes, he is," Xander said dryly. "Since I heard he's Wolfram and Hart."
"Yes, he is, Knight." He stared at him. "He has three possible addresses but he has three street gangs, all human, who may answer to him. He's an ally that gets them out of jail."
Don coughed and held up his badge. "We have officers if we need backup, sir. All we need is where so we can find him."
"Because he's ready to lose it like he did on that last set of pirates," Xander said quietly. "And I hate missing those events."
The demon nodded his head and stalks, writing down the addresses. He handed it to the detective. "There, and thank you for being so kind."
Xander smiled. "Faith's at work."
"Huh, well, she knows how to sell a scary image," the demon offered. A few laughed. "Does Wendy work?"
"Most of the time. Something minimal though." He stared at him. "If there's any more of that sort in *my* town, get rid of them? I'm damn tired of not being able to get laid because everyone thinks I'm too dangerous."
"Sure, I can pass that along," he promised, nodding again.
Xander beamed. "Thank you, Hubert." He walked out and kissed someone on the cheek. "Congrats on the egg."
"You saw that?" she demanded, one hand on her pouch.
"No, he saw it last night and that it might cause a slight ...argument." He stared at her.
"Um, honey, I'm knocked up," she called. Her boyfriend and her lover both glared. "The Knight *saw* it!"
"We won't fight," they agreed. "We'll be good parents, whichever one of us it is." Xander beamed at them and walked out with Don following him.
The female demon put a hand on Don's arm. "He's humming. You're going to need excavation gear. Or the people who did whatever will."
"They took his twin. It was someone from Wolfram and Hart?"
She tensed up and nearly started to cry. "Oh, God, no. We'll make sure they're all gone, Detective. We like peace. We like that the Knight encourages peaceful relations and demons to move here. Really!"
He smiled. "We like that too. I won't lie and say some wouldn't be freaked out but most of us would rather have peaceful things than what they handled a while back with their human sacrificing cults."
"They did that?" she asked.
"Yup. With Mac. Their boss."
"Ooooh. We'll make sure anyone like that is turned in, sir. Is that one agent really Angel?"
"No clue. I have no idea who Angel is. He works with the Manhattan Felony lab, he works with me, he interned in Miami and with the BAU." She nodded at that and a few made notes. "He still has pack members in all places." He walked out. Xander had made it to the car so he climbed in before he took off. "She asked me a question."
"You stop some apocalypses and they look at you funny," he said dryly. "I should be able to tell which one he's in without having to go in."
"Good. Let's scout each, I'll give Mac a report, we'll get backup, and then toast that sucker."
"Works for me. Lighter fluid?"
"I prefer cuffs and letting them burn in the light of day if they're flammable that way."
"Some may be," he admitted.
"I'll handle that paperwork then." The boy grinned at him and they drove off, quickly. Traffic was thankfully light tonight. Don called in reports to Mac as they hit each spot. One of the gangs spotted them but Xander had a gun. Openly showing it. They stayed away from the car. "Feel him?"
"No." He parked and thought at his twin, then sighed and shook his head. "I don't know." He got out and walked over to one of the gang kids sizing up his car. "Touch it and I'll use your nuts for target practice, kid." The guy sneered at him. "I'm from near LA. I've seen tougher that just crossed over." He found the head guy and walked over to him. "Got a question."
"Why should I answer?" he sneered.
"Because I'm going to kill someone tonight. It can be you. It can be the person who has my twin brother. Your choice." He smiled sweetly and innocently. "It wouldn't be the first time." The guy stared at him. He stared back and the guy eventually looked away. "Which site is my twin at? I've heard your lawyer has him."
The head guy stared at him. "Why would our lawyer have your twin?"
"I'm one of the people that turned their shitty corporation in to the Feds. I'm also from somewhere he'd love to own. Plus, we deal in artillery and guns." The guy moaned and shifted. "So, is he with one of the three gangs? Is he at the apartment? Or is he at the new office?"
"Not that I've heard of," another young guy said. "I've heard it said he took over another gang's warehouse and paid them with stuff."
Xander stared at him. "Which one?"
"The one on eightieth."
"That's a huge neighborhood. Got a cross street? A gang's name? Anything to narrow that down? Because my twin? The last time he got this pissed? He wiped out part of an army in Africa." They all shuddered at that. "Like I said, someone's going to die. All I want is my twin back. If I get him back, then I'll be a happy camper." He smiled at the young punk. "So, got a cross referencing point?"
"The Ghetto Boys have that neighborhood," the head guy said. "You from LA?"
"Just outside it. Called Sunnydale. Huge ass death rate there. Over thirty percent some years." They all looked disgusted. "We helped bring that down." He stared at the young guy again. "The truth?" He nodded. "If I find out he's here, I'm coming back with SWAT."
"Nah, he's there," the head guy said. "Paid them off with something chemical."
"Thank you," he said, walking off. He smacked one on the head. "Eyes off my ride. It's bad enough some of my bitches blew up my last few." The guy stared at him in horror. "What can I say," he said dryly. "I've dated serial killers." He smiled. "But you're cute and nicer. Bi, baby?" He shook his head and backed off. "Pity. At least you look like you have something to brag about, maybe." He got into the car and they drove off.
"Don't bait the gang kids," Don begged quietly. "They shoot at us."
"They shoot at me and I ruin their lives," Xander reminded him. "And protect you."
"Seeley told me about the pack stuff."
Xander grinned but didn't glance at him. "Having a good pack is important." He found the right neighborhood after a call into the gang unit. Yeah, his twin was in there being disgusted. He got out and headed closer, then whistled and got the tank out of the trunk. She rolled over and went to search for him.
Don found the video display. The tank had to move to the next building over but it worked. He called Mac to tell him what he saw. Including all the dead or knocked out bodies of the gang. That wasn't going to make anyone happy. He went to stop Xander. "Wait for backup," he reminded him. Mac, a lot of cops, and HAZMAT rolled up. Mac took point, getting a nod from Don. Xander had his axe again and the officers were giving him funny looks. They moved in and checked the bodies, letting HAZMAT have them for now. The people who had Xander tried to keep him. They lost. 2 threw the axe at one of them, splitting his chest with it. Out came purple blood. And he died.
1 looked then grimaced. "You were messy on me. How am I supposed to clean that off these pants?"
"I'll buy you new ones," 2 promised, getting him free. "Any others?"
"Upstairs. The rest of the board." They smirked and went up to arrest them too. It was a lot of prisoners. Who the FBI swooped in and took for them. 1 got the glare at all of them as they were led off. 2 was wiggling his fingers as they were led past.
"We'll get you," one sneered. "The slayers can't save you."
"The slayers don't usually save us," 1 pointed out. "Didn't tonight. And hey, next time, I'll break bad."
"Or he'll call and we'll both do it." 2 smirked evilly at him. "Even though he is the more evil half." The demon sneered all the way to the van. 2 looked at his twin. "Are you okay?"
"I'm fine. They thought I was whiny."
"Why? I complain more."
"I know. They're still getting us mixed up."
"We find that impossible to do," Don offered. They both smiled and hugged him. "Reports, boys. We want to know what they wanted him for."
"Sure," 2 sighed. "By the way, I threatened a street gang."
"Huh. Interesting night. Was it the same gang where I had a guy decide to turn bi for the night to have me?"
"No. Different gang."
"Pity. He was pretty damn good."
"Boys," Don complained.
"Yay," they said dryly.
"You're gay?" one of the watching officers asked.
"Bi," they answered in unison then smiled. "But picky." The officer shuddered.
"You wouldn't make the cut anyway, Officer Jones. You're not used to fun. It shows in the way you stand. You're tense, you're uptight, and you're going to break one of these days."
"Go find a woman if you don't have one," 2 agreed. "Please." They finished the reports and handed them over. "We're going to the office." Don nodded. They walked out together, going to the car. It was still good so they got to go to the office and pet guns to calm down. That had been close. The tank got to help their new engineer, who still loved her. It was a good reward.
The head of SWAT walked into Mac's office the next morning. "That tank they used last night?"
"The boys created her. Her name is Pippen and there's a few others around for tactical use. They can put pinchers and other things on it. Their personal one for security has a rubber ball cannon that hurts a lot from what I've heard." He smiled. "They'll set a good price for us but it's self-guided. It's very good at surveillance, which is what they built it for, as well as their home security system."
"So partially useful but not totally? Can we borrow it?"
"Yes. They have three others at the lab just outside the city. Two are smaller so can't go over debris as well, one's the same size and has a pincher attachment instead of the ball cannon."
"Good to know. Can we field test them?"
"They said I could." The other officer smirked at him for that. "They're said to be asleep on the couch in their office out there."
"I heard they're twins."
"They are. One was very pissed off last night."
"I heard." He stared at him. "Are they sane?"
"Quite sane, just used to being protective since they went to Africa. In some of the worst parts. They had run into pirates, civil wars, all sorts of things."
"Good to know. They're field techs?"
"Ballistics. Minor in field."
"Even better. Rambo?"
"The one without the eye patch."
"I'll keep that in mind." He smiled. "I know we got briefed because of their dating habits."
"Yes they do have that problem," he agreed dryly. "Let me know when you want to field test them."
"I'll arrange it." He smiled and left. Mac sent the boys a text message. They usually had at least one phone near them in case someone needed them. He still had to decide if he was going to suspend 2 for acting up that way at a scene. Plus threatening a street gang. They had asked a uniform to not bring the crazy white cop with only one eye back, they were scared of him. Mostly because he might turn more of them gay. He got back one from Miller's phone saying he'd tell the boys after they got done sleeping together on their office couch. They had locked the door, shut all the windows, and settled in to calm each other down. So he was fighting the incest rumors again. Mac sent back one saying he knew they weren't but to please let them know.
The boys came in Monday wearing dark glasses and looking pale.
"Hangover?" Danny teased with an evil look.
"Headache not a hangover. We don't usually drink," 2 complained, glaring at him. Danny was still too happy looking. "We'll gladly spread it if you want."
"Nah. But you'll get picked on."
"We bite," 1 reminded him. "Hard."
"Blood tastes good," 2 agreed.
Danny snickered all the way to his lab. Those two would bear the picking on pretty well.
Sheldon ran into them in the halls. "Hangover?" he asked loudly.
"We don't drink, Doctor. We do however bite and like it." 2 stared at him. "They're headaches. Really." He backed off at that. "The next one, I get to bite." He nodded, going to spread that around. They made it to ballistics, a quiet radio, and a darker room. Their scopes were lit so they wouldn't have a problem.
Mac walked in and turned on the overhead lights, earning moans. "You'll get a worse headache, boys." He came over to look them over. "Any idea what caused this?"
"Concussion," 1 admitted.
"In his case. I've got carryover from it," 2 said grimly.
"Hmm. Have Sheldon make sure you're fine for duty, Xander."
"I'm fine. I've had plenty." He got back to work. Mac pulled him away from the table. "I need to do that," he said calmly.
"Not until you get clearance. That is the rule we go by. Either him or Sid, boys." 1 stomped off. "Car accident?"
"Lab accident. Someone blew something up and it carried into the area he was working in. Sent him flying into the unlit crucible setup in there. Iron into his temple."
"Did he go to the ER?"
"He's fine. It's not our first concussion, Mac."
"Still. Medicines? Scans to make sure there's no blood clot or anything?"
"We had been drinking beers the night before so our blood was too thin," he admitted. "He's fine. I've only got a headache from him."
"Fine." He went to check. He was down with Sid. The boys liked Sid better than they did Sheldon since he tried to tease them at times. "Sid, is he fit for duty?"
"He's got an atrocious headache and a bad mood to go along with it. He is tired from not being able to rest very long. His headache is increasing his grouchy mood too. He'll be fine but I'm sure they'll bite someone. Probably someone who tries to tease them."
"I can let him go home."
"He'd still need someone to wake him up at set intervals."
"True, but I can make sure his twin doesn't work overtime today."
"If you can talk him into it. They're a bit stubborn." Stella walked in holding her arm. "Did you run into something?"
"Grumpy, hung over twins," she complained.
"One of them has a concussion," Mac told her. "Not a hangover."
"Has a headache from lacking sleep probably," Sid told her. "Someone has to get up and get the poor person up."
"Maybe I'll forgive them for this then." He smiled and bandaged her. "Thank you. They're vicious."
"They're in pain. Like any good dog, they bit," he reminded her.
"Uh-huh. I'll smack them around when they're better."
Mac walked her back up there. He looked in ballistics, and found Don hanging around. "The twins?"
"Got called to testify." Mac moaned. "I warned the DA's office. I pity that defense attorney."
"Me too. 2 bit me," Stella complained.
"You probably taste good," Don teased with a grin. "You're a beautiful, exotic species with good taste." She walked off shaking her head. "Should I make sure they head home tonight?"
"Please." Don nodded, going to find them and let them know that. Mac went to work in ballistics for the day. He hated concussions.
2 walked into the court room, still in sunglasses but now in a suit and had his hair fixed. He took his oath and sat down, glaring at the prosecutor.
"CSI Harris, are you hung over?" he asked bluntly.
"My twin has a concussion. It's led to a lack of sleep so I have a throbbing headache. I'm protecting myself from the brightness of stupidly ugly power ties like the defense attorney put on his client and against the damn sunlight coming in."
"Why would your twin having a concussion bother you?" the prosecutor demanded.
Xander lowered his glasses to look at him. "Because people with concussions have to be woken up every few hours fully enough to answer some sort of stupid question. Which means I had to get up every few hours fully enough to do that." He pushed them back up. "And your shoes don't match very well."
He looked down then at him. "Why did you have to get up?"
Xander looked at the judge. "Can I have your gavel for a minute to bang the stupidity out of him?"
"No. It's not allowed." He looked at the prosecutor. "If his twin isn't dating, who would?"
"Oh, I never thought of that."
"Thinking, it's a good thing," Xander said dryly. "Especially since it's well known that we live together."
"No, there's been no evil wenches recently or psychotic boyfriends. We're almost missing them at the moment." He shifted to cross his legs. "Do you have something pertinent to ask? I'm about to pass out from the stench of aftershave." He glared at the bailiff, who moved further away. "Thank you."
"You were the ballistics tech in this case?" the prosecutor asked, handing him a file.
He flipped though it. "I gathered in the field. My twin ran the test fire and comparison." He handed it back. "Because I was still out there and there was a possibility it was an officer's gun. It was the same make, model, and had an NYPD tag on it. So we rushed it back to the lab for him to do for me."
"I see. You're identical twins?"
"Except for me missing an eye, yes."
"How did that happen? Does it impact you in the field?"
"An insane preacher decided I'd have visions and popped it with his thumbnail," he said blandly. "It was before our trip out of the country and our training after that trip. No, I'm fully competent and able to compensate for it, Counselor. I learned really hard when I was in Africa being attacked."
The lawyer swallowed. "All right, so you're fully able to work scenes with it? It doesn't hinder you finding evidence?"
"I find looking around by turning my head compensates for things that I might miss by just looking in one direction." He sipped some of the water the bailiff gave him. "Thank you, bailiff." He got a nod back. He looked at the lawyer, taking another sip.
"So you're fully qualified to work field cases?"
"Yes. And my certifications were top level again this year. My twin actually got a bit lower because he found a second case during the tester case they gave us and it took his time from the primary one's goals to solve that murder. A note was made that he had been working dual cases from the same scene but he got two points lower for handing in a conclusion and confession about an hour after the time limit. On both of them."
"I see." He nodded. "So you're in the ninetieth percentile?"
"Ninety-seventh," he corrected blandly.
"That's fine. You found the bullet how?"
"We found the gun how," he corrected. "The bullet hadn't been pulled yet. The later comparison to the bullet in the body happened during the autopsy. The gun's test fire and running against the system happened first to see if it was an officer's gun. As to how the gun was found, it was partially under the victim's leg if I remember right. There were two shell casings, two shots in the body, and we later found an additional shell casing that did not lead back to that gun by the dumpster. That one led back to a robbery spree and someone shooting his partner for us."
"All right, so you found the gun yourself?"
"Those are my initials."
"In Detective Taylor's report it said he found the gun." He let him see it.
"No, it says a gun was found. It did not say he found it." He handed it back. "He found the third shell casing, I got the body since I'm better at delicate, fine detail work like body searches for evidence."
"I see." He reread it. "It states 'gun was found under the victim's leg and shell casings were found under victim's side." He looked up. "He's not talking about his own actions?"
"No, I think he meant what he said since further along it mentions *he* found a shell casing by the dumpster." The attorney read it and nodded. Xander stared at him. He was pausing for some reason. Xander glanced at the judge then at him. "Any other questions, Counselor, or can I get back to work? I find gunpowder to be soothing."
"Um, one." He turned to look at him. "Is this concussion from your twin spreading?"
"Just the lack of sleep giving me a headache." He stared him down. "Unlike our coworkers who thought it might be a hangover, and one that got bitten, I know what's causing my headache." He took another sip.
"I have no more questions."
The defense attorney looked at him. "You have to yearly certify?"
"Bi-yearly. We certified just before we got out of school and then this year for next year."
"What is your rank this year?"
"Because no one can get perfect unless you have microscopic vision," he said bluntly. "That case we got a faster confession. This last one was harder."
"I see. So that lacking eyesight doesn't bother you?"
"And the person who popped your eye out?"
"No, he popped my eye itself," Xander said blandly. "His fingernail punctured my cornea and caused my eyeball to split and drain. They could not save it," he finished. The man shuddered. "And no, it doesn't really hinder me in the least. That's why I look around while I do things like looking at scenes, driving, anything like that."
"You don't have any adaptive gear in your lab?"
"No. Our monitors are the same size. We both prefer to put our comparison samples up on it instead of in the microscope's view itself. It lets us see finer details easier."
"Do you perhaps need glasses?"
"No, my last check had me at 10/20. Why?"
"Your twin's eyesight is just as good?"
"His was 20/20. He had a sinus infection that day."
"Interesting. So did you see the comparison between the two bullets?"
"Mac wanted to look at it once we got back. By the time the autopsy was halfway done, the comparison was done, and so was the report. It needed spell checked and that version accidentally got handed over by Mac. We corrected it by giving them the spell checked version. No facts were changed and no people were mutilated in the process of spell checking it."
"Was that a threat?"
"No. It's something your client said to me when I questioned him the first time."
"Was it the ballistics that led you to him?"
"No, it was his DNA on her that led us to him."
"I see. Her?"
Xander pointed. "Those are girl parts," he said dryly. "She was mid-transition to male." He leaned back. "We thought she was fully male until the autopsy. It turned out he was about three-quarters done and only needed the genital surgery."
"Oh." He looked at the pictures then at him. "You remember that with a migraine?"
"I remember a lot of things. Even with a headache."
"I suppose that's fine. Your Honor, I'd like to call him back when he's in a better mood?"
"Granted. Call the other one so we can get done with him too please," he told the prosecutor. The twins changed places, the first handing over his glass on the way out.
1 sat down after his oath, staring at them, then at the judge. "Forgive me if I drift a bit. I'm really tired and it's making me mean."
"He did tell us you were concussed. We can call you back if it's too much to handle."
1 shrugged. "I've had worse concussions and had to do bigger stuff than this." He looked at the prosecutor. "Get on with it while your mental hamster is still able to work today, Counselor. Before I puke on you."
"You examined the gun?"
"Compared it to the officers' guns on file?"
"Yes. I found it matched to that idiot there," he said with a point at the person behind the table. "Officer Jenkins."
"Thank you. How would the defendant gotten hold of an officer's gun?"
"He hadn't finished the forms for it yet but the night before, he was mugged coming back from a movie with his girlfriend." He took a sip of water and grimaced. "Warm." The bailiff refilled it for him. "Thank you, bailiff." He looked at the prosecutor again. "The defendant in question was his neighbor, knew he was an officer, knew he wore his pistol off duty, and knew that they were going out for the night."
"You were watching the interrogation?" he asked.
"No, there were a total of four talks. I and my twin were in on the second one and the one with the officer. I pulled him in to talk to him when I found it was his gun. I had one of the senior detectives with me and he handed over the paperwork he had been working on all day long. If he hadn't had so many forms to fill out for that, we would've already had that noted in the system and wouldn't have had to scare the crap out of him by dragging him into interrogation." He took another drink. Then looked at the bailiff. "Dude, quit bathing in the male sauce?" he asked quietly. The bailiff coughed and moved away again. "Thank you. My stomach's a bit touchy and your Axe spray is a bit loud." He took another drink and put the glass down. "Before you ask, no he couldn't have done it. He was within plain sight of over twenty officers filling out that paperwork when the victim was shot."
The prosecutor coughed. "All right, so you questioned without authority? Or without internal affairs being present?"
"If we had found out a call to IA was warranted, we would have. In this case, he had reported verbally that his gun had been stolen, and IA gave him the two feet of paperwork to fill out because of it. Tracing back where he got mugged led us to looking for some of his neighbors, which worked with the DNA results as I found out."
"You participated more than needed in this investigation?"
"Mac was out for the second interview because of a similar scene to this one." He waved a hand around. "He spent most of that day waiting to be called for a whole ten minutes of testimony. My twin and I interviewed him with the senior detective assigned to the case with us. Then Mac was back for the others."
"I see. So you were involved in this case beyond ballistics?"
"Are you trying to prompt me to get contempt of court charges?" he asked. "Just ...don't. I'll puke on you or bite you, dude. I'm in no mood for verbal jousting. Just be calm, be quick, and be concise for a change. Please."
"I agree," the judge said. "That wasn't even a clarification. CSI Harris, please don't verbally bite the lawyers."
"If I must." He finished the water and put the glass back down. "Yes, I'm involved in many cases. I'm a full CSI even though I am a ballistics tech. It's the job."
"I'll call him back later if we need more testimony, Your Honor," the prosecutor offered.
"That's fine. Defense?"
"Sir, is he literally going to bite?"
1 stared at him. "From my experience, you're the sort that's too careful to pick up anything sexually so your blood is probably clean outside of your drug habit. Maybe the meth you've been doing would make me sleep," he said dryly. "Before you ask how I know, my sense of smell is pretty high right now and as I walked past you I smelled meth on your suit. That and the condition of your hair and teeth speak of it." He stared the man down. The lawyer shrank back. "But no, I wouldn't bite you. I have taste and you're not worthy to be one of my usual psycho posse that tries to date me." The judge laughed just a bit. "I have serial killers who want me who're prettier than you." He stared at him. "Got any other questions?"
"No. I don't believe you can clarify anything for us at this time."
"Then you're released and I hope you feel better soon, CSI Harris."
"Your lips to the Goddess' ear," he muttered, walking out. He ran into Don, who was waiting patiently. "What?" he whined.
"Mac said to get you home before you bit someone less worthy than Stella." He nodded with his head. Xander hugged him and let himself be walked out. Don took the gun from the guards. Don had heard the whole testimony and it was cute. Mac would be getting a call but it was adorable of the twins. He got them both home and it was better. They went to separate bedrooms for him and all that. He drove back to the lab, checking in with Mac. "The one with the concussion is upstairs, his twin is downstairs. The bedroom upstairs has a built-in bathroom."
"That's fine. I got told they were amusing?"
"That one sent the defense attorney to NA hopefully. They both baited the prosecutor. What did they say?"
"I got sent an email from the prosecutor to please warn him that they were sick sooner next time."
Don snickered. "Xander asked if he was asking stupid question to make him earn a contempt of court charge."
"Usually he's more subtle and smooth."
"Maybe. I heard they asked one defense attorney in Miami if their mental hamster had stopped turning the wheel."
Mac snickered. "I heard. Thanks, Don."
"Not a problem, Mac." He walked off happier.
Mac called and left a message for the prosecutor. "This is Taylor in the lab. I want to know how they did today. They don't often have to testify and today was not a good day I'm sure. Please send me transcripts or a copy of the tape. Thank you." He hung up and got to work on the next case. Sometimes it was stupid how much paperwork he had to do.
2 walked in the next morning alone. "He's staying in today."
"Thank you," Mac offered. "How's your head?"
"Still giving me a headache from all the waking up." He yawned. "We'll be fine though. Why? Who said something?"
"The prosecutor swore about you for nearly ten minutes."
"He's clearly a pussy who needs more language skills then," he said bluntly, walking off. "He pissed us off first. His brain hamster is retarded."
Mac moaned, shaking his head. He made a sign and put it on the door to ballistics. Xander smirked and made his own versions, putting them on the corners he had. That way everyone knew he was still in a bad mood, had a headache still, and would continue to bite until further notice.
Stella looked, rubbing her sore arm. "Thank you for the warning," she said from the doorway. "Do I have any reports?"
Xander looked at the usual spot. "Don't know. There's a few there." He shrugged. "Get them and toss them at people's heads for me?" She smiled and grabbed them, walking off to give them over. He got back to work. His twin was pouty and miserable at home. He should be too. Of course he got an idea he sketched out and then got back to work.
The head DA stomped in later that afternoon while he was sketching. "Is that lab work?"
"No, this is for my private lab's work and I'm on break," he said bluntly. He stared at him. "You hire a lot of people who had brain rotting from law school. Is that on purpose? It seems like it sometimes."
"My people are very good."
"Then they just ask stupid questions on purpose?" The DA sneered. Xander waved a hand. "I've seen teenage girls do that better." He got back to it. "Mac!" he shouted, holding his head. "Visitors!" He finished up and put it into his bag, looking at him. "Which case were you hear about?"
"The one yesterday, young man."
Xander stared at him then snickered. "If you're trying to be threatening, I know teenage girls who do that better too. Even in the middle of the night in jammies. So just save yourself the posturing time for in front of the cameras. Your guy knew we had headaches and the other one of us had a concussion."
"You had a hangover."
"No, I had a hangover from lack of sleep. Not like someone else gets up in our house to wake up my twin when he needs it. We have no mythical roommate, neither of us is dating right now, and gee, we live together. Everyone but you seems to understand that." Mac walked in. "No matter what your delusions of our incest may be, I'm sick and tired of it and I'm not in the mood to put up with it today. If you want shit, spit it out. We're blunt, rude, and lower class kids."
"I know many of those that're nicer," he sneered.
"Who helped protect their hometowns?" He stared him down. "By the way, I can tell. How is Sova?" The man turned puce and backed away. He smirked. "Yes, we're the White Knight of Sunnydale." The man fled. "Good! Send someone with some sense next time!" he shouted. He looked at Mac. "I don't care about harmless demons but I'll be damned if I'm going to be threatened by one." He handed over a report. Then dug out the design. "How about that?"
Mac looked it over. "It's compact. Will it have enough power?"
"Don't know." He put it back up. "I'm without work?"
"Apparently." He walked off with the reports. "Take a twenty minute nap, Alex."
"Yes, sir. Thank you." He went to the exemplar cabinet and curled up in there on his jacket.
Mac called the DA's office. "He is sorry but he's still not feeling great and he thought you were threatening him." He hung up and looked over the reports. "Stella, yours and Danny's cases have reports," he said, spotting her.
"Finally. Where is the grouchy one?"
"I told him to take a short nap."
"He's not in the break room."
"He's in the exemplar," Adam said, handing her one of his own. "That blue stuff is a professional lubricant." He walked off to check on the boy and close the ballistics door and put up a sign saying he was napping. He stared at Lindsey. "It can wait. He's finally getting some uninterrupted sleep," he said quietly.
"Why can't he sleep at home?"
"He has to wake up the other one for his concussion. Not like they live with someone else."
"Oh." She handed over the box. "I only need the registration. It was found near the scene but hasn't been fired or cleaned in a while. It has dust."
"I can do that," he promised, smiling as she huffed off to complain. He spotted Sheldon watching. "Is she jealous?"
"Maybe." He shrugged. "I can run that."
"My gun. I haven't gotten to play with any for a while." Sheldon smiled, handing him another few samples. "Ewww. Can't DNA do that?"
"She has. It's your turn. It was inside a puddle of something slimy."
"Yay." He went to start them running while he looked up the gun's registration. He handed that to her when she huffed around him later on. "Owner died after someone was shot outside his apartment. The noise made him jump they think. His son's listed as being an officer."
"Thank you. Is he still asleep?"
"He hasn't slept right in days," Sheldon told her.
"I don't see why it's such a big problem."
"Because a concussion means you have to get up every two hours," Sheldon told her. "Then slowly work your way up to real sleep. It's been two days. That means his twin is probably sleeping about three to four hours at a time. Which means he has to get up and wake him up every three to four hours."
"Why can't an alarm clock?"
"Because you need to be woken fully enough that there's no chance it's keeping you down. Usually you get to answer some pointless question," Adam told her. She sighed and walked off.
"He'll probably try to give her one if she complains to him," Sheldon sighed.
"He's mean right now. He bit Stella when she thought he had a hangover."
"Someone will stop her," Sheldon assured him. He heard the bang and winced. "I hope."
Adam went to look. Danny and Mac were heading the same way. It was in ballistics but she had opened a cabinet and had it fall on her. Xander was still asleep in the exemplar.
Danny looked in on him. "Hey, Xander?" he called, waking him up. "You good? Lindsey just tipped a cabinet on herself."
"I'll fucking kill the bitch," he mumbled, standing up and coming out to stare at the mess. He glared at her. "You made it, you clean it the hell up." She gaped in horror. He stared back. "I'm not here to be your daddy and clean up after you. You messed up my lab, you clean it up again." He walked out. "Getting some caffeine so I can deal with people again."
"Curl up on the couch instead," Mac called after him. "He's right. You created the mess, you clean it up."
"You're not supposed to be in there anyway," Mac told her. "Just clean it up again." She huffed but set things back where they should go. Thankfully they were all boxed. She glared when Danny stayed.
"I'm protecting you for when he comes back." He made a note on the log sheet in there. That way it was in the official ballistics records if the other shift's guy can't find things. Mac came back smiling slightly. "He resting again?"
"I had Adam take him home. He's in no shape to be here today. He should have called off."
"I still don't see what the big deal is," she complained. "We go on short sleep all the time."
Danny looked at her. "Obviously you've never had a concussion, Monroe. My last one lasted for ten damn days of migraine like pain, light sensitivity, all that. Plus double vision and nausea. That's without the complication of having to be woken fully every 2 hours for most of that week. Which just helped that headache so very much, really," he finished sarcastically. "If you want, we can mimic it for you or give you one."
"No, thank you." She finished up and stomped off. Danny made another note, getting the three she missed that had landed under the desk. Then he went back to his own job. Ballistics was clear. The twins were the best in efficiency around the labs. They even showed up in other overloaded labs to help out. He loved the little freaks, but he felt sorry for the headaches. Especially since 1 had probably shared it over the stupid twin bond thing that no one else would ever understand.
Lindsay was still complaining but Adam had picked up something heavy so Danny grabbed his arm and walked him off. "C'mon," Adam complained. "That way she's experienced one and can do all the tests she wants."
"No," Danny ordered, handing him to Mac, and his heavy object. "She's still whining." He walked off again. "Montana, go find something more constructive to do," he yelled into that lab. "Like check the kits." She huffed off again.
Sheldon sighed. "I'm not a violent man," he admitted.
"I took Adam ta Mac for the same thoughts," Danny warned.
"I saw. It was a good idea or I'd have to treat her."
"You're not an ER, Doc. Even if you are great." He smirked and they got back to work while Mac got Adam calmed down again. "Well, one out of three hires being a bad idea is actually a pretty good average for this lab," Danny said a while later. Sheldon laughed and nodded.
1 walked in a few days later and put things down on the table. "Stella, that's for you, Sheldon, and Danny, maybe Don if you're feeling generous, and Mac of course." He kissed her on the cheek. "I'm sorry I bit you."
"It's all right. I've had a concussion before. Not Lindsay?"
"No. She created her own mess from what I heard." He walked off. "Danny, you and Sheldon have an apology in the break room with Stella. Mac and Don too if they want."
"Thanks, kiddo. No lesser clone today?"
"He's getting pretty with the current problem stalker. She's taking him shopping in handcuffs. Yes, before you ask, Dispatch does know. They told me to come to work today." He gave him a look. "So I'm going to go check on my lab and we'll see what prettiness he brings home." He went to his lab and kicked the door shut then came out and went to Mac's office, pulling him out of his chair and to his lab by his wrist.
"I can walk, Xander. You could've asked."
Xander stood in the doorway and pointed. "Does that look wrong to you?"
Mac walked in and looked. "Your laptops were moved. Probably by the cleaning crew."
"Mac, my laptop's supposed to be in the desk drawer. Locked up. The same as my twin's should be." Mac stared at him. "Even with a concussion and I don't think he was doing anything that would've kept him from doing that since he assured me he locked them up before taking his nap."
"Crap," he muttered, turning them on. It came up with the security protocols. "It's been violated." Xander came in to get into the messages to see what they wanted. "Did they download anything?"
"No. They tried to get two case files and company information." He let him have that report and moved to the other one. "They managed the password on this one and only managed to get into the personnel list." He printed that off and the message from the security system. He also called Graham. "Our laptops were raped at the office. Personnel lists as far as I can tell. Please do." He hung up. "We'll be switching them out so they can be looked over."
"That's fine. Is anything else touched?" Xander walked around, finding something odd. He held up the wrapper with his fingertips. Mac stared at it. "Yours?" Xander shook his head. "You're sure?"
"We don't eat this type. It sucks." He put it on the table. "The chocolate's still soft on it. It's been less than a day." He walked out, heading for AV. "Please copy down the tape from ballistics for the last day and a half." The tech looked at him. "Someone tampered with our laptops. They have designs and things on them plus cases." He nodded, copying it down for him. Xander took it back to watch with Mac. There was a large spot of static. Mac went to question the AV tech about it happening elsewhere as well as what caused this one. "I swear if this is Wolfram and Hart I'm going to hunt every single scum sucking lawyer on the planet to take them out," he muttered. He got into something else. He turned on their spare computer to check the current list of files against their last backup. Something was wrong. Mac came back grimacing. "Sixteen cases that aren't listed on the last backup are listed on here. We've only had three."
Mac came over to look. "Some were updated as well," he complained. "Out. Let me run a full forensic test on this lab, Xander." He nodded. "Where's your twin?"
"He's shopping by force of handcuffs. Dispatch told me to come in while they handled it. Apparently they think we're scary again." He walked off, heading to where his twin was. SWAT hated to see him but yay! He walked into the store past them, heading right to his twin and his twin's captor. "Do you mind if I have my twin back now? Someone tampered with our company laptops and tried to screw with our lab with the PD."
"You're cops?" she demanded.
"CSI," 2 said, pulling out his ID.
"But you're wearing an eye patch."
"Yes, I am." He smirked. "I can do both." She slumped and let him go. "Thank you." He kissed her on the cheek. "Try again when it's not a bad day, dear. Or just ask next time, that might work better than handcuffs." He walked out with his twin. "How much?"
"They managed to crack your password and got personnel lists. They got into the casefiles. Mac's doing a full forensic look over ballistics."
"Yeah, really." They walked off. The team leader got in their way, scowling, hands on his hips. "Hey, I haven't seen that since Horatio did it to us last time for wearing leather pants on duty. Someone screwed with our lab. I needed him back sooner." He walked his twin off. "One of these days, one of us has to date a normal woman who cooks."
"You could hit on Speed."
"He said he's straight. Which is a pity. I'd tap that in a heartbeat." They got into a cab and went back to the lab. They came off the elevator to Feds. "Gee, did they screw up and touch our lab, Mac?" 1 asked.
"No, they think it's dangerous someone broke into your personnel lists."
Xander looked at one. "Who told you that had happened?" They all gasped at him. "Because we didn't call. He was being held hostage in Nordstroms and I went to free him faster than SWAT was. Mac, did you call them?"
"No. That's an interesting question though, boys. Danny!" He came jogging up the hall. "See who called these agents."
"We heard through gossip," one defended.
"I just got back from a few days off for a concussion," 1 said bluntly. "What gossip?" She flinched away from him. "Fuck it, until we know otherwise, you're dirty. Danny, want help?"
"You can't question since they compromised your lab." He got a few patrols to help him drag them to an interrogation room. This might be a happy day after all. Those agents hated working with them so they treated the whole lab like garbage.
Graham walked in, handing 2 a laptop. "With the diagnostic program on it," he said quietly.
"Thanks." He went to hand it to Mac and start it running on their laptops.
1 led Graham down to the viewing room. "Do you know any of them?"
"That's Riley's wife," he said with a point. "She tried to bug me the last time I saw her. When I was telling off that agent about the pirates."
"Huh." They shared a look then 1 nodded. "Interesting. Anyone else?"
"No. I think a few may be Homeland."
"They're all carrying FBI cards." He went into the room, startling Don Flack. "So, Mrs. Finn," he said bluntly, making her give him a horrified look. "Yeah, had to have Graham bring something down to help us with whoever broke into our lab." He looked at her. "You're Homeland and carrying and ID and badge from the wrong agency. Will the FBI or Homeland like that?"
"No, they won't," Don said dryly. He pulled out his cellphone and called the main number. "This is Detective Flack. I'm at Manhattan Felony Crime Lab and I need a supervisor. We have pretend agents." He smiled at her. "That would be more than acceptable, yes. Yes, that building. In interrogation. I'll have one of the CSI waiting so he can brief you on the way up. Thank you, ma'am." He hung up. "Xander, go wait on their version of IAB."
"Sure," he agreed. "Name?"
"Perkinson. Don't accept anyone else."
"Agreed." He left to do that, smirking meanly. His twin was going to have a lot of fun with this information. He leaned in. "Mac, some of those agents aren't FBI." He went down to the sign-in desk. He *knew* the guy coming in wasn't FBI. He snickered when he produced the right badge. "Yeah, right," he said dryly, drawing attention. "Hi again." The man backed up, giving him a horrified look. "Call the FBI. Never mind. I know someone." He called. "Garcia, it's me. 1 yes. I need the regional supervisor for New York or the Internal Affairs guy in the lab up here ASAP because we have some agents who're pretending to be FBI." He smiled. "No, I'm sitting here looking at one of the guys Riley's working with and his wife's one of them. Please." The guy attacked him so he hung up and kicked his ass. "Not bad coming off a concussion," he said dryly. The patrol guys were staring. "He's with the group of idiots that Flack has in interrogation 2. Please drag him that way? And his fake ID," he said, handing it over.
"Sure, Harris," one agreed. "What's going on?"
"Someone decided to screw with ballistics." They shared a look and the officers shuddered but took the agent off. Xander waited. The Secret Service guy coming in got an odd look. "I'm waiting on an FBI supervisor, which detective did you need, Agent...."
"Somers. I'm here to speak to Mac Taylor about an upcoming visit."
"He's in ballistics, but he's running a forensic audit. Let me call." He took the phone from the receptionist. "Mac, me. A Secret Service Agent Somers is here. Okay." He hung up. "He said he'll be in his office in about ten minutes and to please go wait on him. He knows you won't touch anything." The agent smiled and nodded. Someone came huffing in a few minutes later. "ID please," he ordered. The man stared at him. "We've had agents pretending."
"Penelope Garcia said that you wanted to see me, CSI Harris?"
"We have some Homeland agents using your agency as a cover the day after, or the day of, my lab being broken into and my files being phished."
"No wonder I got called." He called in someone else to report that and followed him to interrogation. "Detective Flack."
"SSA Perkinson. Long commute?"
"They had the phones diverted in the local office," he admitted.
"I called a friend in the DC office to have her get the word up here," Xander said with a smile.
"That works for me," Don said. "Out, Xander." He nodded and left, going to watch. "His lab was compromised. These agents showed up out of the blue claiming to be FBI, when half of them are from Homeland. This one was dragged up after attacking Xander for proving he wasn't FBI. Xander got a bit pissed."
SSA Perkinson nodded. "What did they phish?"
"Their private company's personnel records, distorted or edited some of the case files," he said, handing over the preliminary list Mac had given him. "That's the starter list."
"This is... fairly evil. Huh." He sat down, staring at them. "Mrs. Finn, Mr. Rochefort, and Mr. Morgan. I know you're all Homeland. Their ID's, Detective?" Don handed over the box, letting him text his people to find their real status. He put the ones aside that were FBI. "Tigress is after me. He should be here soon. They go to him."
"Sure," Don agreed. "We don't wanna step on any toes this time." He smiled.
"Good idea. We love to lead this dance." He smirked at all of them.
Yeah, this was going to be fun. The head of the local Internal Affairs bureau was let in by the kid as well. "You got told?"
"I'm pissed as hell." The badges got handed over. "Good. Let me deal with our people first and then we'll deal with the fake agents."
"We are agents," Sam Finn protested.
"Yes, but not the way you're going, young lady," Perkinson said bluntly. Someone else was let in. "Who're you?"
"He's my counterpart," the FBI IAB guy said. "These are yours," he said, handing over that stack. "Are they allowed to do that?"
He looked. "No, they're not." They settled in to get a good statement. Between them, not even the hellmouth or demon battle trained could lie. It'd be stupid if they tried to.
1 and 2 both sat in Mac's office later that night, sipping sodas. "Willow," 1 called. "We need you right now. It's a threat to the line."
She appeared, staring at him. "What threat to what line?" she demanded.
"The slayer lines," 2 said, handing over the notes. "Riley's group was turned against us because we're with the Council. Someone wants it to go back to being one slayer, one watcher."
"We knew we had one." She read it over, grimacing. "Buffy's going to be *so* pissed. She had a date tonight. Anything else yet?"
"No one's sure what the guy looks like," 2 told her. "They don't know and they've talked with him in person. Also, look farther back." She flipped back again and went pale. "Yeah, someone saved her. They stupidly came after us here."
She looked at them. "Are you two safe?"
"Willow, we make artillery," 1 pointed out.
"Good point." She left, going back to the slayer house. "MEETING!" she yelled as she walked. "It's someone trying to kill slayers!"
"Damn it, I have a date!" Buffy yelled back. She stomped down and took the information Willow held up to look through. "Summon them back. Or make sure they're absolutely safe. I know Faith and Wendy are with the twins. Make sure they're safe first." Willow nodded, moving to call around and do that. "Giles!" she bellowed. "I don't have a date tonight after all. He's part of the plan to bring down the slayers!"
"What?" he said, coming down to get the information. He read it through twice. "Oh, dear Lord," he muttered. "I want to see him tonight, Buffy. Can you get him back here?"
"Sure, I'll be unable to pick him up due to a flat tire." She went to have Dawn call. She could lie better than Buffy herself could any day. Spike had taught her how.
Giles went to make plans with the other senior staff. Someone was going to die and it was not going to be his girls. He found Willow making something. "How do we know?"
"Some of them tried to get Xander." He groaned, shaking his head. "Exactly." She smirked. "They're not happy either."
"I dare say not," he agreed. He went to call them to make sure they were safe then went back to talking to the senior staff. If it wasn't an apocalypse, it was a conspiracy. It never seemed to end. Thankfully they had made plans for such occurrences.
2 looked at their ladies. And Graham. "1's in the car guarding us. Anyone heard from Cleveland recently?" They all shook their heads.
"I know I got a voicemail from them," Wendy said. "But my phone had a glitch and shut itself down. It ate it."
"That's because there's a move to stop the lines." Faith moaned, shaking her head. "Yeah, including the Finns." They all stared at him. "Including trying to screw in our labs and get company information." Graham shuddered. "Graham?"
"We're safe. I've checked. We're hacker proof. We have one on staff."
"Good." He looked at the girls. "That leaves you two vulnerable. Would you two like to come share a room at our place?"
"Are you planning on getting something bigger?" Graham asked. "You don't have great security. It's good but not great, even with the mini-tank."
"That's an option we're looking at. We might not mind something bigger if this is going to be a long-term necessary step." He looked at the girls again. "We can share a room. That would let you two share or one have the couch."
"I think I could like that," Wendy said, looking at Faith. She shoved her long, thick black braid back over her shoulder.
Faith nodded. "I agree," she decided. "How bad?"
"He wants to make sure that all the HM's are closed, there's only one girl because it brings too much power, and apparently the guy has some power. Even people who've met with him don't know what he looks like."
"Shit," Faith muttered. "I've got stuff I can put in storage."
"I'll start looking for a bigger place for those two tonight," Graham promised. "You can store the stuff you won't need immediately out at the company. We have a few rooms for those who sleep out there."
She smiled. "Might be handy, yeah. Thanks, Graham."
"Not a problem. I'm kind of the head of security now and then too." He smirked at the girls then at his boss, who was giving him a dry, unamused look. "Len said so."
"Fine. Whatever. The company?"
"Is fully shielded. The corporate car is bulletproofed. I made sure before we left DC."
"Can we switch out for a new one? That one's well enough known."
"Maybe. I'll look into that. Plus tell Len to be more careful about things. We'll get you guys somewhere you'll maybe like, Xander. Don't worry so much and let us handle some of the finer details."
"I've got an apartment full of stuff," Wendy admitted. "I can sort tonight and head over then." Faith nodded she had the same thing. "You sure, Graham?"
"I'm certain. They can't set us on fire or bomb us. The shield prevents the bombs from going off. By the way, after that, we went searching and found three that were in a shielded, stunned state. It worked very well all the way to the gate." Xander grinned at that. "So, let me do that. I'll have Len or someone come pick up the extra stuff, ladies." He stood up and put money down. "Be safe. There's not enough of you as is. Too many dirtbags in the world." He left them, making plans with Len. Thankfully someone had magically shielded his cellphone from eavesdropping.
"So, pizza tonight?" 2 asked with a grin.
"I can do that," Faith agreed. "Get some and let's go?" They nodded and Xander went to the counter to put in their order. She and Wendy made plans. They had been taught battle planning by the twins. This was event planning but about the same thing. Xander came back and added in another few points to consider, getting smiles for it. Not that they were shopping slayers like the others, but even they had some clothes.
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