Title: A Little Distraction
Alatri ^..^ alatri@att.net
Warnings: serious n’ silliness
Feedback: Comments, critiques, suggestions, etc, all welcome. ;-)
Disclaimer: Only mine in my dreams. ;-) This story was written for free entertainment purposes only and may not be reproduced for profit or altered without permission.
Notes: Set about two years previous to the movie.

Arrrrgh!!!! I can’t do drabbles... o.O I tried, really I did... {sigh} (This was an attempt to respond to Mackzazzle's drabble challenge to use the line I want you to just lie back and think about... in the story.)  Ah well, have fun anyway! ^__^

A Little Distraction

“Deeeeex!” Joe’s hands fought to find purchase on the walls as he was dragged down the hall. He’d tried to get loose from the thing that held him, but the grip on his leg only got tighter as he struggled. Twisting his head, he could see Dex running up and he knew a moment of relief, then struggled harder. The metal jaws continued to clamp down... then the machine stopped moving. “Thank goodness...”

Sitting partly up, Joe regarded his situation. His left leg was trapped very firmly within a pincher-like grip of a maw in an otherwise unremarkable looking hunk of machinery. The rest of him was in a rather awkward position as his leg was three feet up and the rest of him was sprawled on the ground face up. Tentatively, he tugged at his leg. Then he winced as the pressure increased. And kept increasing. His struggles became more desperate as the metal pressed into the bone on his shin and he could feel it continuing ---

“Stop moving!”

A hand appeared in the middle of his chest, pushing him down to the floor. Joe’s focus was mostly a red haze and he barely recognized Dex. “Dex, get me out of this thing!”

“I’m working on it! But you have to stay still!”

“Dex, it has my leg, and---”

“I said I’m working on it!” Both hands were now holding him down. “Just stop moving, already! It’s set up with an equal-force reaction base and every time you push it, it pushes back – the only difference is it’s not letting up on the pressure when you stop! So stop pushing it already!”

It was very difficult not to move. Joe did his best.

“That’s better, Cap...”

Joe felt the hands leave his chest and he opened his eyes and looked up at Dex frowning at the machine. Dex glanced down at him, “Take it easy, Joe; I’ll get you out, but it might take a bit.” He scowled at both Joe and the machine.

Joe tried to settle and then winced at the pain and then winced again as the pressure increased.


“I’m trying... it’s a little hard when an armor-plated killing machine has your leg in a vise!”

“I don’t actually think it’s a killing machine. More likely it was a---” Dex broke off his speculations at the look in Joe’s eyes. “Uh, never mind.” He moved over to one side of the machine and Joe lost sight of him. Then he got a cramp in his leg...

“Joe!” Hands held his leg still for the time it took him to recover his self control.

“Dex, I can’t.” He hated to admit it, but he just couldn’t. It wasn’t his style at the best of times to stay still, and at a moment like this, when the pain was pooling up behind his eyes and all he could think about was getting loose...

He heard a long sigh. “Okay, Captain. We’ll try this another way. While I work, I’m going to talk to you. You’re going to listen, you’re going to concentrate on listening, and you’re going to answer. You’re NOT going to think about your leg.”

That might work. If he had Dex’s voice to hold on to...

“Okay.” The hand was back in the middle of his chest, pushing him down. “I’m putting my handkerchief over your eyes to keep your distractions down.” Joe closed his eyes obediently and he could felt the cloth gently settling and the cool fingers smoothing it out and brushing across his forehead. “How’s that?”


“Okay.” There was a rustling sound as the gentle hands were removed from him and Dex moved away. “Now Captain, I want you to just lie back and think about pink feathered tutus.”

Of all the things... “Pink feathered tutus???”

“You remember,” Dex’s voice was laced with humor, even as Joe could hear the sounds of machinery being tinkered with, “Three weeks ago, Vanderness Avenue, that shop with the---”

“Oh yeah. The girls.” Joe’s mouth curved up in a grin. They’d been walking along the street at night, and then saw this group of older teenagers looking at a pink ballerina outfit in a display window. They were each talking about wearing it, which had prompted Joe to start picturing some of them in it, which had prompted Dex to start joking about Polly wearing it... Actually, they both thought she would do quite well in it – they just didn’t ever think they’d be able to get her into it.

“I was thinking... what if it wasn’t Miss Perkins in that tutu...”

“Um?” Joe was being nicely distracted by the thoughts of Polly in the outfit...

“How about Franky?”

Joe’s mind flipped around and his mouth opened in a whistle... “Captain Franky Cook in a pink feathered ballerina suit...” He started busting up laughing while being careful not to move.

“But she’d sure look good!”

The mental image Joe had in his mind agreed with Dex one hundred percent. Better than good, actually... he wondered...

“I bet she’d do it if you asked her.”

“I’d get a clobber in the jaw if I asked her!” But he couldn’t leave the image alone... “On the other hand, if YOU asked her...”

“Uh...” Dex’s blush was almost visible in his voice. “I don’t think so. I may not get the uppercut, but...”

“Yeah... Too bad.”

“Though... If we BOTH asked her... in private... and swore we had no recording images and would keep silent through eternity...”

Joe’s mouth twitched up, “You know, my boy, I think you’ve got something there... I think she might...”

“And then if we---” Dex’s voice broke off with a sharp stillness. There was a smell of burnt electrical wires in the air.

“Dex?!” with an enormous effort of will, Joe didn’t sit up.

“I’m okay. Just a bit... Hold still for a bit longer.”

“Dex, if you...”

“Joe, if you keep holding still for just another minute, *I’ll* wear the danged tutu!”

The image was... Joe held very very still.

“Okay, now, I’m coming over to your side, but don’t move. I think it’s deactivated, but we’ve got to get your leg out, and I don’t want to risk movement while I’m trying to open it.”

“Gotcha, Dex. Good boy.”

“Right, Cap,” the humor was back in Dex’s voice.

“Can I also get you to wear that---”



“Absolutely not.”

“Even if... it’s loosening.” Joe breathed a sigh of relief as the pressure around his leg gave way. And then he hissed his breath in as pain regained its foothold.

“Easy, Cap’n.” Dex’s voice was soothing. Joe felt a firm grip take hold just above his calf, and it would have been painful except he knew it was Dex. “Hitch yourself back a bit, please... I’m going to keep your leg steady.”

Joe did that.

“A bit more...” There was a sigh of relief from Dex, “That’s got it,” and his leg was gently lowered to the ground.

Taking the handkerchief off his eyes, Joe sat up awkwardly but with enormous relief. “Good boy, De---” He broke off as he took in the image of a slightly blackened Dex in front of him.

“Just singed, Cap’n,” Dex hastened to reassure him, “I’m okay.”

“Singed, right.” Joe didn’t quite believe him, but with his leg in its condition, he wasn’t in any shape to argue.

“It’s a good thing we were on our way *out* of the fort when this happened,” Dex remarked casually, “Imagine if all the defenses were still active.”

“Thank you, I’d rather not.”

With a bit more ingenuity, they managed to get up and moving out again.

“Dex, for all your good work back there...”

The look Dex gave Joe was slightly disbelieving, but he responded anyhow, “Yes, Captain?”

“*I’ll* wear the damn tutu.”

There was a silent pause as they continued to hobble their way out.

“Do you think, if we got three matching ones...”

“I’m sure we can just share.”

“This could be interesting...”

“So, you’ll call Franky...?”

“Just as soon as we get back to base and your leg is out of the hospital.”

“Good boy, Dex.”