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A Time for Family


A Time for Family
Janet Jeffries

 

Rating- G/PG

Warnings- None

Summary- Sappy Thanksgiving Fic

Disclaimer- Don't own the team or any of their associates as seen on the series. Oh, but if I   did...


 


A Time for Family

 

     Although he would never let on to anyone, ever, BA still felt slightly uneasy and out-of-place at any of Face's scammed residences.  The latest one no exception, but Face had asked him to come over this afternoon.  "Hey Face, I'm downstairs," he announced probably a little too loudly on the lobby phone.  But Face buzzed him up, anyway.

      Face met him at the elevator with a smile.  "Thanks for coming, BA."  As Face led him into the lavish condo, BA couldn't help but be impressed.  "Are you hungry?  Thirsty?  You should check out the view from that balcony over there. It's really great," Face says as he pours out a glass of milk for his friend.

     "What's up Faceman?" BA asks as he takes the beverage.

     Face runs a hand through his hair.  "I have something for you.  A present. Here," he says as he pulls a business sized envelope from his jacket pocket and hands it to BA.

     BA looks at the outside and reads the name of the travel agency before he opens it.  He pulls out the ticket jacket inside and opens it.  A train ticket with his name on it to Chicago and return.  BA glances from the ticket to Face. "Thanks man.  A ticket to go see Mama.  She will be so surprised.  How did you..."

     "Just a simple matter of making travel agents your friends.  A very healthy investment.  I know you haven't seen your mother lately, and we're not on a case, so...  Anyhow, Thanksgiving is a time for family.  And I am just glad I could help you be with yours this year," Face replies with a genuine smile.

     BA remained quiet for a few minutes, gently rubbing the ticket in his hand. Finally he spoke.  "But Faceman, I thought you and me and Hannibal was gonna do a turkey this year.  And maybe even break out the crazy fool."

     "I've spoken to Maggie and she is calling Hannibal as we speak and inviting him to Thanksgiving at her house.  Followed by the remainder of the weekend at this little cabin in the woods.  I believe she's as close to a wife as the Colonel is going to get and they need to take advantage of the holiday together. As for Murdock, I've arranged for him and Kelly to fly to her parent's home in Seattle over Thanksgiving.  I think it's about time Mr. and Mrs. Stevens meet their future son-in-law.  Don't you?"  Face says with a wink.

     BA smiles back, still clutching the tickets.  "Yeah.  Crazy fool better act normal when he there, though.  Might scare 'em.  And make Kelly join some convent to hide her from the fool."  He catches the painful expression that crosses his friend's face for a split second.  "Sorry man.  I didn't mean the convent crack."

     "No.  It was a good joke.  If I ever have a daughter and she brings home someone like Murdock, I'd probably want to hide her somewhere like that," Face replies, smile back in place.

     "So whatcha doing for Thanksgiving then?  Now that you've sent all of us away," BA asks.

     "All kinds of things.  I was going to call Donna- you remember, the pastry chef.  Or maybe Kim- she had that terrific barbecue over the Fourth.  And there's always Wanda or Stacey or Linda or..."

     "Okay, Faceman.  I get the picture.  Just make sure you have a good holiday.  I guess since I leave tomorrow afternoon, I'd better go home and get ready.  I'm sure Mama'll want to call and thank you on Thanksgiving so I'll talk to you then," BA says walking to the door.  Before he leaves, however, he turns
to Face and awkwardly offers his hand.  "Thanks again, Face."  He smiles again as his teammate grasps his hand in his own and returns the smile.

 

***

 

     "So Lieutenant.  Tired of my turkey surprises?"  Hannibal asks with a laugh on the phone a few hours later.  "You know, kid, not everyone got sick last year."

     "Just everyone but yourself, Colonel.  I had to come up with something this year that would keep you as far as possible from any kitchen I'm eating out of. Otherwise the health department or poison control might add you to their 'most wanted' lists, too."  Face replies in jest.

     "But really, Face, Maggie and I both want to say thanks.  It will be great to spend so much time together.  In the woods, away from everyone and everything.  Especially Decker.  And you're positive he's going to Florida?"

     "Yes, Hannibal.  I spoke with Crane himself this morning and reconfirmed the travel arrangements for Mr. and Mrs. Decker to visit her parents in Boca Raton.  Leaving in two days for a full week.  Nothing to worry about.  So have a great time with Maggie," Face says before hanging up the phone.

***

     The next morning, Face dons VA disguise #128, 'D. W. Murdock' and quickly cons his way into Murdock's room.

     "Face- you look so... so ridiculous," the pilot says as he bursts into laughter at Face's appearance.

     "You shouldn't laugh at your cousin.  It's not nice to make fun of family members," Face mockingly scolds as he removes the get up.  "Do you have time to take a walk with me?  I have a surprise for you."

     "I always have time for you, Facey.  So what's the surprise?  What is it? A surprise for me?  Which pocket is it in?"  Murdock questions as he grabs his leather jacket and leads his best friend into the hall.

     "Murdock, chill.  You'll see soon enough," Face replies as he is practically pushed outside by the excited man.  The two friends chat about inconsequential matters until they reach a partially secluded bench near the
property line.  "Okay, Murdock.  I've secured a week-long pass for you from here.  Tomorrow Kelly will pick you up and take you to that airstrip we like to use on missions.  From there you will fly to Kelly's parent's home in Seattle. It's about time you were introduced to her family."  Face pauses and smiles at the look of pure joy on Murdock's face.

     "Face, are you serious?  A week away, free and clear?  With Kelly?  And her family?"

     "Yes, Murdock.  I've spoken to Dr. Richter and he believes it will be good for you and your relationship with Kelly.  So enjoy."

     "Wow, a real Thanksgiving with a family, Kelly's family.  But what if they don't like me, Face?  What if they are mean, or don't like Billy, or are secretly aliens?"  Murdock asks with concern.

     "Is Kelly mean?"

     "No,"

     "Does she hate Billy?"

     "No, she likes to play with him, too."

     "Is she an alien?"

     "Of course not, Face."

     "Well, what are you worried about?  You love Kelly, right?"

     "With all of my heart."

     "Then that settles it.  Because hopefully, one day you'll marry her, not her family.  Just be yourself.  People can't help but like you,"  Face replies with a smile as Murdock envelopes him in a bear hug.

     "Thanks, Face.  This is one of the greatest gifts anyone has ever given to me.  I mean it.  Thank you.  From me and Kelly."  Murdock finally releases his grip on his friend and looks at him.  "What are you going to do without me, Muchacho?  We always have turkey day together."

     "I've got some things lined up.  A dinner possibly with the lovely Irene. Maybe breakfast with Monique.  You know me.  Besides, Father Maghill asked me to help out at the orphanage making sure the kids have a good holiday.  Probably overbooked myself, but that's okay, keeps me out of trouble.  Now, I've got to
go, but make sure you have a great time this week."  Face allows Murdock to hug him again, before he walks to his 'vette and drives off.

***

     Later that morning, Murdock and Hannibal are talking on the phone. "Colonel, what about Decker?  I mean, Face has us spread out all over the place."

     "No worries about Decker.  He and the missus are going to Florida for a week.  Face checked and reconfirmed with Crane," Hannibal replies.

     "Face really went to a lot of effort for us.  So hung up on this idea of families being together.  I wish he had some kind of family to turn to. Besides us.  And we won't even be here," Murdock says.

     "I may just have a plan for our Lieutenant, Captain.  Let me call a few people and I'll get back to you.  In the meantime, I have a couple of things you can do for me.  I would like to give Face a Thanksgiving surprise of his own."

     "Count me in, Hannibal.  Anything for Face."

***

     Thanksgiving morning dawned clear and cool.  Face showered and dressed in jeans and a sweater for his duties at the orphanage.  Just another day for him, as it always has been his entire life.  And there was no way he was going to let his teammates mope around with him when they actually had others to go to. Family to celebrate the holiday with.  That's why he bought the ticket for BA, rented the cabin for Hannibal, and scammed the plane for Murdock.  A marginal expense, a little planning, and his friends were really going to have a great time.  That's why he did it.  To see them really happy.  To know that he could make that happiness possible for them.

     It was a pretty good day so far.  He had played touch football with some of the older children until some of the sisters asked for his assistance in the kitchen.  Some of them were around when he was here, almost twenty years prior. He helped peel potatoes, baste turkeys, and take biscuits out of the ovens.  It seemed like an awful lot of food for the small staff, himself, and the two dozen orphans, but he didn't say anything.  Just helped out where he could until the meal was ready.  Then Face was sent out to round up all of the children; time for the feast.

     Father Maghill caught his attention as he was following the last of the children into the dining hall.  "Templeton, I just wanted to say thanks for all of your help here today.  Sister Margaret told me of your proficiency in the kitchen.  And I know of your football game.  But do you think it is wise giving them pointers on bet making or taking?"

     "Sorry, Father.  I sometimes forget," Face replies meekly.

    "Don't be.  You should come around more often if you can.  The older ones really look forward to your visits.  Someone who lets them get away with murder, teaches them about life on the run..."

     "Father!"  Face says shocked as he looks at the priest.  Then he notices the smile forming on his lips and takes the kidding in stride.  "Hey, look at how I turned out.  I can't be all that bad of an influence, am I?"

     "Of course not, son.  I just wanted to let you know that your worldly wisdom, albeit a bit unconventional, is always welcome and appreciated here.  I heard what you did for your friends today.  That was very generous of you," Father Maghill says patting Face on the shoulder.  "Now let's get into that dining room and chow down.  The smells are driving me crazy."

     The priest holds the door open for Face to enter the room first.  Face's jaw drops as he sees his friends and their families standing with the children around the tables.  "Happy Thanksgiving, Face!" Murdock shouts as he comes to his friend's side and embraces him.

     "Murdock, what...  Why are you here?  Who are these people?  I...  I..." Face stammers.

     "We are your family Face.  And like you kept telling us, Thanksgiving is a time for family.  We just couldn't leave you behind.  So we brought our other family members to us.  To you, " Murdock says to his stunned friend.  "Now come on.  I saved a place for you at my table.  You have to meet Kelly's sister.  And BA is about ready to dive into the closest turkey he sees if we don't start eating soon."

     Face catches Hannibal's eye and smiles shyly at him.  "I... I don't know what to say," Face says quietly to no one in particular.

     "Then don't say nothin' except the blessing.  Food's gettin' cold and I'm hungry," BA shouts from a table full of young boys and his mother.  Everyone laughs and takes a seat, preparing for the prayer of Thanksgiving.

     Face gives the blessing he remembers saying as a child.  He adds a few extra lines about friendship and family feeling happier and luckier than he can ever remember.

 

The End

 


A Time for Family by Janet Jeffries

 

 


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