New in Town, Taylor?

Brian woke first, Justin’s hair tickling under his nose as the blonde squirmed a bit. The older man automatically released his grip and gently peeled himself off the smaller frame. He knew he should be grateful they’d slept through the night without one of Justin’s nightmares, but it was still disappointing that the younger man didn’t want to be held. Brian rolled his eyes at himself. When in the hell did he suddenly develop a need to cuddle? Obviously, he spent too much time with the munchers.

The detective stifled a groan as he rolled onto his back, the various aches and pains from yesterday’s adventure making themselves known. He was mentally taking inventory when he felt Justin scoot back until they were touching again.

Now, that was a first.

Unless he was awake. "Justin?"

The blonde just snuggled closer. Curious, Brian pulled away once more and waited, and soon Justin was inching over, seeking contact again. This time Brian wrapped himself back around the younger man and Justin murmured his approval before settling back down and snoring softly.

Brian sighed contently into the warm crook of his neck. This was a definite improvement.


The next time he woke up, he knew Justin was watching him. The blonde had rolled onto his back, and Brian was sprawled over the top of him. Brian lifted his head from Justin’s chest and was greeted by a shy smile. "Morning."

"Hmmm…" was all Brian could muster as he pressed their lips together.

Justin broke the kiss far too soon for Brian’s liking. "Did you sleep okay?" the blonde asked. He knew he’d kept Brian up sometimes when they were together.

"Uh-hmm… you?"

The artist could only moan in agreement when Brian nuzzled his neck.

The older man pulled back and looked into Justin’s eyes. "No dreams?" he asked. Even though he knew Justin hadn’t thrashed around like before, he wanted to be sure the blonde wasn’t just internalizing his nightmares instead.

Justin thought about it for a moment, reaching into his memory to see if any fragments came back, then shook his head.

He knew how patient Brian had been when he was having nightmares in New York. At first, he didn’t even realize he was having them, he only had a vague feeling of unrest when he woke, like something was stuck in the back of his mind and couldn’t get out. When Brian finally told him what he was saying in his sleep, pushing him away, the blonde had been mortified. However, the detective just took it in stride, convinced it was only temporary because of the upcoming anniversary. When it was over the anxiety would pass, he said, and it appeared he was right.

"And no more looking over your shoulder?" the older man asked.

Justin blushed slightly. "No, you were right. I was just being paranoid."

Brian cupped his cheek. "I would’ve been more concerned if you weren’t. You’ve been through a lot, but it’s over. Time to start fresh with someone else."

"Yeah? With who?" the blonde asked, trying to stop the smile that tugged at his mouth.

Brian’s eyes flashed impatiently. "Twat," he grumbled before initiating another hard hungry kiss.

But again he was thwarted. Justin reluctantly tore himself away after a few moments. As nice as it was to revel in this new… whatever they had, they needed to take care of Brian’s cuts again. He lightly touched the bandage on Brian’s forehead. "How do you feel?"

Brian growled in frustration. "Stiff," he replied, moving the blonde’s hand lower.


Despite, Justin’s protests, Brian insisted on going to work. The blonde gave up trying to convince him otherwise and stormed out to the car, as huffily as he could manage with his bad knee. While he waited for Brian to follow, he finally remembered to check his messages.

There were four ‘wrong numbers’.


A few moments later, Brian slid into the backseat beside Justin. One look at the other man and he contemplated just calling a cab. "Justin," he sighed, "I’m fine really, but this ridiculous argument is going to give me a headache before I even get to work."

The blonde took his hand, forcing a smile. "I know, I’m sorry," he offered contritely.

Brian studied him for a moment. Something wasn’t right. "What’s wrong?"

Justin shook his head. It was probably a coincidence, and he didn’t want Brian to think he was overreacting. "Nothing," he assured the other man. "Just take it easy today, okay?"

The detective didn’t believe him, but nodded. "I will, Angel. Don’t worry."


Later that morning, Emmett breezed into the blonde’s office. Justin cut the other man off before he could start. "I’m fine, he’s fine, everything’s fine, I don’t want to talk about it."

Emmett pretended to be insulted. "Well, I never--"

Justin smirked. "Yes you do, always."

"Touche," his friend conceded. "Anyway, what do you say we cut out early and play hokey for the rest of the day? Come on, Princess, I need a spa day after all that excitement."

Justin raised an eyebrow. "Something happen that I don’t know about?"

Emmett emoted pain. "Yesterday was very traumatic for all of us. Brian’s part of our little queer family now and I couldn’t bear it if anything happened to him."

"I know, Em." The blonde was struggling to keep a straight face at his friend’s theatrics. "I shouldn’t make light of your pain. And thank you for the offer, but Brian will be here soon and I want to get this clock hung up before he gets here. I’ve been trying all morning, but it’s been one interruption after another. Now that the rest of my day is cleared, I’m going to show my new… boyfriend…I think…that I love his gift and then go home and give him a personalized deep tissue massage you can’t get anywhere else." He handed the clock to Emmett, ignoring his gaping mouth. "Can you give me a hand? Janine is being a pain the ass," he yelled loud enough for the woman to hear him.

"I’ll give you a pain in the ass," the woman called back, banging her stapler for good measure.

Justin laughed. "That’s new, last time it was the three-hole-punch." But Emmett wasn’t laughing. "Em?"

"Oh, Princess," the man lamented, shaking his head, "I so wanted things to work out with the dishy Detective, but," he set the clock down and backed away from it, "that’s just…I don’t know what that is!" he exclaimed.

The artist rolled his eyes. "I like it."

"Then it must be love," Emmett replied, rallying his spirits, "but I really must talk to him about-"

"Leave him alone. I like him just the way he is," Justin warned. Before his friend could protest any further, the blonde thrust a hammer and nails at him and gestured to the chair he had pushed against the wall.

Justin used his artistic eye to direct Emmett to the best position on the wall he had chosen. The older man had just finished hanging the clock when Lindsay burst in.

"Justin, I need to talk to you about—what is that?"

"It’s a cuckoo clock. Brian gave it to me," the man replied defiantly. "Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m expecting a conference call."

Justin just told Emmett he had cleared his schedule, so why was he lying about a conference call? "But you--" Emmett started, then paused. Justin’s cold glare at Lindsay would’ve frozen hell. "But you don’t need me right?" the man backpedaled. "‘Cuz I got that appointment…"

"No, that’s fine. I’ll see you later, Em… Lindsay." He nodded curtly to the woman and then busied himself with paperwork on his desk until he heard his door close.

Justin left the stack of papers and limped over to his sofa. He propped his leg up and laid down. He had a few minutes before Brian came to pick him up and he just wanted to relax and digest everything that had happened in the last twenty-four hours.


Emmett grabbed Lindsay’s arm as soon as the door closed. "What’s going on with you two?"

The woman yanked her arm back. "It’s none of your business," she snapped.

"You work for me," the man corrected tersely. "If whatever is going on affects how you two work together, it is my business."

Lindsay gave an exasperated sigh. "I know, I’m sorry. I’m just worried about him, and he’s not taking me seriously."

"About what?"

"About Brian and the accident. It’s one thing to have his history…you know, with Eric. And then he gets involved with someone who’s a human target for a living. I tried to warn him it’s just going to get worse, but I don’t think he believed me, and who can blame him. His worst nightmare came true yesterday. Brian was hit by a car, it doesn’t get any worse for Justin, now does it? And the driver just took off! Who knows who it was. I can’t help but wonder if it was really an accident. It could’ve been anyone from his past trying to get even. Mel says I’m just paranoid, but I can’t help it. He’s the father of my son and he’s in danger every day. How am I going to explain it to Ricky if anything happens to him? And if I feel this helpless I can’t imagine how scared Justin is. You talked to him, is he alright?"

Emmett shrugged. Everything happened so fast, he hadn’t really thought about it like that. "He seems fine," he replied, pushing the sudden nagging fear away. Justin would’ve said something if he were worried.

Lindsay nodded. "You’re right, I’m just overreacting. Being a mom can do that to you." She suddenly checked her watch. "Speaking of, I gotta run and pick Ricky up. I’ll be back in about an hour." She kissed Emmett’s cheek and hurried down the hall.


Having overheard his friends through the thin door, Justin struggled to keep the rising panic under control. The artist went to the phone and called Brian’s precinct. He needed to be sure it wasn’t someone from the past trying to hurt Brian. What if Eric was back?

No, it wasn’t true. He’d just call Danny and find out what really happened yesterday, then everything would be fine. Justin’s hand shook as he clutched the phone. Why hadn’t he realized it yesterday?

Because he thought it was over, but it wasn’t.

Justin squeezed the phone harder and forced himself to calm down. It was. Eric wasn’t trying to hurt him or Brian, and as soon as he talked to Danny, he would know for sure...

When he found out the detective was unavailable, he left a message for him to call back as soon as possible.


When Brian arrived later, Emmett, Janine, and a group of interns were just returning from lunch.

"Why Detective Kinney, you’re tardy," Emmett chastised.

"Crime doesn’t punch a clock," Brian replied drolly.

"Speaking of clocks--" Emmett started, but one of the students pushed forward.

"You’re a police man? Are you here to arrest someone?" a girl asked.

"’Cuz she’s volunteering," another girl chimed in.

Janine shushed them both. "Brian, this is the new group of interns working for Justin this semester. Jamie, Eve, and E."

Brian raised an eyebrow. "E? Like the drug?"

The girl batted her eyes. "Yes, I am. Wanna frisk me?"

The other girls giggled. "She just wants to see your nightstick," Jamie added.

Justin heard the commotion and came out of his office. "That’s off limits to anyone but me."

"Meeoow," Eve snickered.

Justin slipped his arm around Brian’s waist possessively. "Hi, baby."

Brian struggled to keep a straight face at E’s disappointed pout. "Sorry I’m late, dear," the older man replied in falsetto.

While the two men exchanged a passionate kiss, Janine wrapped her arm around E’s shoulder. "Don’t feel bad, I made the same mistake," she sighed. "And that shiner just makes him look even more butch. You couldn’t have known."

"Does he have a hot, single partner?" Jamie asked hopefully. "I want one of those nightsticks too."


A collective groan from the girls tore the men apart. "Don’t you ladies have an assignment to be working on?" Justin hinted. "In fact, here comes Lindsay now. I’m sure she’d be happy to take you to the vault and help you get started."

Lindsay scowled as she removed her coat, but didn’t argue.

"So, I hear you’re in for some personalized pampering this afternoon," Emmett interjected. "On the way home stop at Splash. I had Bobby put together a little basket of goodies for you."

"I see you have a plan," Brian said to Justin.

The blonde nodded. "You don’t mind do you? I just thought we could relax."

"Sounds good," Brian replied huskily. "I could get used to this."

"Don’t," Lindsay snapped. "Next time you could be dead."

Brian felt Justin stiffen, and gave him a reassuring squeeze, ignoring the woman. "But before we go home, I need to stop at Mel’s office."

"She’s working," Lindsay protested. "Don’t bother her."

"She’s my lawyer, I need to see her at the office," Brian replied curtly. "Unless you want me to come by the house later. Although then she could bill me time and a half."

"We don’t need your money," the woman snarled.

"Then what were you bitching about yesterday?"

Lindsay turned red and started to argue when Emmett cut in. "This is not the time or place. Lindsay, why don’t you go freshen up. Boys, enjoy the day. Ladies, I’ll take you downstairs. Janine I hear a phone ringing."

"We don’t have to work with her, do we?" Eve asked anxiously as Lindsay disappeared to the rest room.

"I hope not. What a bitch," Jamie muttered under her breath.

"So, Stretch," E turned a studious gaze to Brian, "what’d you do to get her panties in a bunch?"

Brian grimaced. "She’s the mother of my son."

The girl snorted. "No wonder you’re gay."

"Justin," Janine interrupted, holding the phone out to him, "Detective Logan is returning your call."

"Oh, um…" the blonde avoided Brian’s gaze. "I’ll take it in my office." He pulled away from Brian, tossing over his shoulder, "Be right back."

But Brian followed him and shut the door behind them. "What’s going on?"

"Nothing, I just…I just wanted to ask what happened today," Justin lied. "You know, you were late and I was…" Justin feigned regret, "I was checking up on you. I’m sorry, I know I shouldn’t have worried, but it’s--"

"Bullshit. Angel, you are the worst liar I’ve ever met." And twice in one day.

Justin cringed inwardly, but he couldn’t tell him the truth. Brian would just think he was being paranoid again. "I’m not," the blonde insisted.

The detective leveled him with a cool gaze. "You are," he replied and then turned to leave. He didn’t know what Justin was up to, but he wouldn’t tolerate any secrets between them. He thought they’d decided they wanted more than a half-assed romp, but if Justin was going to pull away again, he wondered why he shouldn’t just cut his losses now.

"Where are you going?" the artist asked nervously.

"To Melanie’s, then home." The older man opened the door and paused. "You can come over if you decide you want to talk."

"Brian, wait," the blonde protested, but the man was already gone.

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