January 07 --- Bee in a Bottle

Holiday: I'm Not Going To Take It Anymore Day

"C'mon, BA, we have to move it or those guys will be long gone before we get there."

"No way, Hannibal. I've had it. You say we ain't flyin, I end up on a plane. Over and over. You must think I'm dumb as a rock. It ain't happenin no more!"

"BA, we have to meet Amy in..."

"Amy ain't goin anywhere without you."

"What about the client? We told him..."

"He'll be okay with just you guys. You done it before, you can do it again."


"That's it, Hannibal! I'm not goin out that door, I'm not gettin knocked out, and I'm not getting on no airplane!"

BA stomped into the next room, leaving Hannibal with his mouth hanging open. He immediately closed it, frowning deeply. He looked over at Face.

"I think he meant it, Face. I really think he meant it."

Face was staring at the door BA had just flung shut. "I don't know, Hannibal. Maybe it's just too soon after the last time. I mean, it's only been a week."

"Hmm, yeah, maybe." He pulled a cigar, holding it absently. "Maybe we could do this one without him."

"Oh, no, Colonel." Murdock sat up straight in his chair. "Did you see those mug shots? These guys are huge. And there's five of 'em."

"We've handled worse odds than that, Captain."

"Not without the Big Guy, we haven't. C'mon, Colonel, you gotta persuade him to come with us."

"And just how do you propose I do that? Ask him politely to step outside so we can hit him over the head with a two by four? I don't think he'd go for it."

"Well, you'd better come up with something soon, Hannibal. We have to pick up that plane from Arnold by four o'clock or we'll be flapping our arms all the way to El Paso."

Hannibal gave Face a sour look. "You're the one with the silver tongue, Lieutenant. How about I leave it up to you?"

Face held up his hands. "Oh no! The last time I talked him into something, he damn near broke my nose afterward. Sorry, but he's your sergeant."

Hannibal looked once more at the door and shook his head in defeat. "Well, we'll just have to take our chances, guys. He won't let any of us near him to shoot him up, or hit him with anything. Go ahead and get in the van. I'll let him know we're heading out." He moved toward the door. "At least he'll be able to come pick up the pieces..."

Face looked at Murdock, rolling his eyes. Murdock closed his and shook his head. They stepped outside, closing the door loudly behind them.

"BA? You win. We'll take care of this one - this time. But you better figure out what to do about this flying business, and soon! Understood?"

No answer from the other side of the door, but Hannibal knew BA had heard, just as he knew BA had listened to every word they'd said before, waiting to hear their plans for him. Muttering, Hannibal stalked out of the apartment, slamming the door behind him.

BA opened his door almost immediately, and stepped to the window. He saw Hannibal, Murdock and Face standing by the van, talking. Hannibal kept shaking his head, gesturing toward the apartment with his cigar. Moments later the three had driven away in the van.

BA smiled triumphantly. For once he'd won. And it wouldn't be the first time. He'd make sure of that. Hadn't been nearly as hard as he'd thought it would be. Hannibal hadn't even tried to order him to come along. Heck, if he'd known it would be this easy, he'd'a done it a long time ago.

Chuckling, he grabbed his wallet and headed out the door. There was a nice restaurant down the street, serving Chicago-style pizza as a specialty. Wouldn't be the same, of course, but it was as close as he'd get to the real thing.

He closed the door carefully behind him, and started to turn toward the street. He felt a sting in his neck, just before the world turned black.

The van pulled up in front of the apartment, Face and Murdock stepping quickly out to gather their fallen teammate. Hannibal moved over to the corner of the building, next to the door, grinning widely.

"Your timing was perfect, Amy. He never knew what hit him."