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14 September 2013 @ 10:24 pm
HALF LIVES 3: OUR LIVES, CHAPTER 31: "PRE WEDDING JITTERS"  
HALF LIVES 3: OUR LIVES, CHAPTER 31: “PRE WEDDING JITTERS
By binaryalchemist
Rating: This chapter rated R, for Roy/Ed foolin’ around
Pairing: Roy/Ed, Havoc/Hawkeye, onesided Riza/Roy, unrequited Al/Winry, past Al/Julia Crichton and Winry’s remarriage
Spoilers and Warnings: Post-Manga verse, Star of Milos, the FMA Novels and Prince of the Dawn game, FMA  OVA’s . Yaoi romance/angst/humor
Plot:  Roy and Ed have been together for 15 years now—Roy prepares to fulfill his 520-cenz promise to make Amestris a democracy, but just before Roy’s 50th birthday and his wedding to Edward a tell-all biography about Mustang is published  that sets the country on its ear---because the ‘truth’ about the Promised Day is about to come out, with Roy miscast as the evil genius behind it all…
SUMMARY: Ed and Roy don’t believe in  pre-wedding jinxes, but it seems as if the whole universe is throwing curve balls in the direction of their wedding, including dirty tricks played by their caterer, Ling Yao’s take over of the Presidential Palace, a protest march outside the front gates, a very sad day for Jean Havoc, and the Battle of the Blondes—Kelley Winchell, Roy’s biographer, up against  Alphonse Elric and film bombshell Gladys Turlough
AUTHOR’S NOTE: Feedback greatly appreciated---“Half Lives”, “Whole Lives” and other fics hosted at fanfiction.net at http://www.fanfiction.net/u/1651220/BinaryTales   and also at  my new host  at AO3 Thanks so much for your comments!!!
OUR LIVES, CHAPTER 31: PRE WEDDING JITTERS
By The Binary Alchemist 2012

           “Isn’t this supposed to be bad luck and all that shit? Seeing each other the day before the wedding?””
           “Mmmm… probably not. I could break a few mirrors and be sure if you like.” The hands that were wrapped around Roy’s chest smacked him lightly. “Ed, you know I don’t believe in all that crap.”
           “Oh yeah? Then what do you believe in?”
           “Well, I believe you are going to be the future Mr. Mustang in about---“ Roy glanced at his watch—“ let’s see—about 28 hours, and the house is in total chaos, and if I didn’t get us the hell out of there  I probably would have been provoked into barbecuing our wedding planners  with the snap of my fingers…and the chances of anybody actually chasing us down on horseback are fairly slim, don’t you think?”
           “We went riding just to get away from the commotion?”
           “Mmmhmm.”
           “On one horse….on the Ishballan double saddle?” Ed frowned, although Roy couldn’t see his face, sitting in the forward position on the imported tack that had been used for quite a number of obscene gyrations on horseback over the past decade and a half. “Stupid to waste such a good opportunity.”
           “Don’t be an idiot, Ed. If I had planned an erotic diversion, you would be sitting in front, it would be dark and we would be wearing certain garments modified for…how shall I put this? Ease of access----WHOAH!!!” A hand shot under his belt and into his shorts.
           “Let’s play a game.” There was a wicked snicker in his ear. “You wanna steer the horse? Have at it. However, I am better at flying an aircraft, and right now, I have my hand on the joystick…which means I’m the pilot here and I’m in control. How’dja like them apples, old man?”
###
           When Alphonse rounded the corner, he spotted a madman waving a cleaver and screaming himself purple in front of a parked delivery van ringed with press photographers.
           “That don’t look good,” Gladys Turlough pointed out. She was dressed to kill---and she was halfway hoping she’d get her chance. Alphonse had sweet-talked her into meeting with Kelley Winchell sometime today, and in hindsight regretted he hadn’t asked her to leave her six inch spiked heels at home. In a fight, one of her pumps could be as deadly as Lust’s fingertips.
           “Crap. That’s Chef Ramsay!” Alphonse turned to her and dropped his voice to a low and persuasive register. “Think you can charm the most famous chef in Amestris?”
          

           Every zoom lens swerved away from the chef and in the direction of the Ice Cream Blonde in her pink angora sweater. “Yoo hoo!” She waved and squealed. “Oh my gosh…is that Robert Ramsay?? The man who cooks for all them kings and presidents and stars?? Ohhhh, I’m soooo excited!!!” She drew a deep breath, dangerously straining the buttons on her satin blouse. “Why, you’re a celebrity!”  She scampered out to the van, D--cups leading the way. “I just love a man who can cook—don’t you fellas?” She winked at the press. “He really knows how to handle a hot piece of---“
           “MISS TURLOUGH!” Alphonse quickly interrupted, “I’m sorry I haven’t introduced you to Chef Ramsay before. So….ah…Chef…..what seems to be the problem?”
           “PROBLEM???” Ramsay swung around, the edge of his cleaver missing Gladys by inches. “I’ll tell you what the motherfeckin’ problem is, Sunny Jim! It’s that goddamn Dago importer, that bastard Bacalla! Said he was gonna send lamb for the wedding luncheon, right? RIGHT??  Fresh from Resembool, he said, right? Well,” his free hand grabbed the back door on the van, “I know Edward Elric don’t like his meat over done. You think THIS is fuckin’ rare enough??!??”
           He yanked the door open. A fuzzy head poked out. “Beehhhhhehhhhhhh!!: Cooing with delight, Gladys rushed forward to pet the bleating creature while Ramsay sunk his cleaver in a nearby tree curses burning the air. “Son of a bitch! How the hell am I gonna find time to butcher all these bastards---“
           “Oh no! You aren’t gonna kill these little babies, are you??” Gladys protested. “They’re so adorable!”
           “Adorable my ass—they’re dinner---fuck me, I gotta get these fuckers to the offloaded and---“
           “—and turned loose in the horse paddock,” Al cut in nervously. “Obviously, there’s been some sort of mistake..or…hahaha…a practical joke from an old friend. Besides, these are full grown sheep—they’ve still got a year’s growth of fleece on them--and you can’t make rack of lamb with something this old---“ The jaws on the faces surrounding Alphonse dropped to the ground with a near-audible ‘thud!”.  He cleared his throat and began again. “A Presidential Pardon, I think, might be in order. Ah….” He gestured helplessly to the van drivers. “You guys sort of…move ‘em down to the paddock---“
           There was a sharp “ahem!” somewhere behind him from Sebastian. “---after Major Havoc takes you through a security check, that is….”
           ‘Hey! What the fuck am I going to do about feeding’ the goddamn wedding guests? “ Ramsay demanded.
           Gladys hoisted her chest a full five inches and winked at the chef. “Let ‘em eat cake.”
###
           “He’s here.” Alphonse informed Sheska and Ruby.
           “Emperor Ling? Oh god—he’ll eat us out of house and home—“
           “—he’ll borrow the President’s car and take off into town and run up tabs in the best restaurants in town—“
           “—not to mention he’ll marry three or four women during the dessert course---“
           “—the Tsar is never this much trouble!”
           “---the Tsar of Drachma!” Sheska was fuming now. “You want to know what that filthy old man sent them as a wedding gift? A solid gold enameled…receptacle. For…afterwards.”
           “Afterwards? “ Ruby looked puzzled. Sheska was so embarrassed she couldn’t go on.
           “It’s for used…ah…protection.” Al stammered. “All the best palaces have them in the honeymoon suites. It’s traditional….flush something like that down a Drachman toilet and you’ll have a bigger disaster than they had at the Sun King’s palace when Ed’s hair stopped up the shower drain and we had sewage up to our ankles in the halls.”
           Ruby did the mental math and then shook her head. “They better give it to you, Al. Those two probably don’t use ‘em and you, on the other hand, own a shared interest in a rubber tree plantation---“
            “Be nice, Ruby!”
           “At least the Aerugoans sent all those doves to be released during the wedding, and a case of King Claudio’s best wine.”
            “I know,” Al sighed. “Ed’s thinking about having them grilled with rosemary. And Roy says that they’ll probably poop all over the guests.” He glanced at his watch. “Thank goodness Nina’s so good at managing people. Master Mei Chang and Dr. Petrovna Lobachevsky are having sherry with Nina, Winry, Gracia and Izumi in the sun room.”
           “Uh oh!” Ruby snorted. “Peta Lobachevsky is the only woman that scares me worse than Izumi Curtis. The only thing worse than a genius is a crackpot girl genius---and a carrot top to boot! I can’t stand those bug-eye glasses of hers.”
           “Her father is the head of Stoltovgrad University and an old friend of Ed’s---“
           “—and he wants to get his mitts on Maes as a son in law—“
           “Ruby.” Al’s frown “Enough. It’s nearly three—go pick up Dr. Marcoh at the airfield—he’s arriving with Dr. Chen. Sheska? I’m sure Sheng Yao could use some help keeping the Emperor out of trouble. See what you can do.”
           “Right, Al.”
###
           The gear for the honeymoon—the real honeymoon—was in Maes’ workshop.  The word in the press was that Roy and Edward were heading up to The Eagle’s Nest, an elegantly appointed hunting lodge in the North built for former Fuhrer Bradley. In truth, the newlyweds were heading up to a rustic cabin in the woods near one of their old favorite camping sites. While presidential decoys headed off in the limo with empty suitcases in the trunk, Roy and Ed would be climbing into an old army jeep with bedrolls and fishing gear and a big sack of books—they could endure no food or water better than no reading material—and heading west. It would be a brief respite of privacy in the middle of the mayhem of the Parliamentary hearing and the election, but it was just what both men craved; a few days of  peace and quiet, fishing, reading and sex—and not in that particular order.
           There would be guards in the woods—that was understood. Roy’s old friend Charlie, along with Havoc and Breda would be tenting out of sight but close enough to provide firepower should the lovers be disturbed by any intruders. They were aware there was probably going to be some alfresco sex and skinny dipping in the creek, but the trio had been around the couple for too many years to be fazed by anything they might see or hear.
           Havoc had stopped by to drop off his back pack and rucksack when he saw someone was already adding their gear to the load out---
           It was Riza Hawkeye.
           “Aw…shit.
           She turned around, lowering her bedroll and rifle to the pile but everything in her expression told him not to push it.
           ‘Not pushing it’, however, was not Havoc. “You aren’t going.” She didn’t answer. ‘You are not on the roster.”
           “I am now.”
           His head dropped to his chest. He sighed, puffing out a great cloud of cigarette smoke. “On Mustang’s honeymoon….you’ve invited yourself to Mustang’s….honeymoon…unbelievable.”          
           She drew herself up, giving him a look that would have intimidated anyone except a man who had loved her and shared her bed for years. “It’s my responsibility—“
           He lifted a hand to cut her off.” “Do what you want,” he told her wearily. “I’m done.”
           “Jean---“
           There was pity in his eyes but she was too blind to see it. “It’s Havoc, Colonel.” He snapped to a salute. “Ma’am.”
###
           “Hiya, Toots!”
           Somebody was banging on her hair dryer. Kelley Winchell opened her eyes and all she could see was a pair of D-cups that were pointed like angora-covered funnels about an arm’s length from her face. She flipped up the hard shell of the dryer and her eyes followed the sweater up to the face. When she saw who it was, she slammed the dryer bonnet back down over her rollers.
           The knuckles rapped again, a little harder this time. Kelley ignored it.  “Magazine.” She commanded, holding out a newly manicured hand. The newest issue of Movie Mirror was placed carefully in her hand by the easily intimidated manicure girl so as not to smear the lacquer that had just been applied to Kelley’s nails.
           “Hey! I wanna talk to you, Kelley Winchell!”
           The hand reached out again. “Chocolate.”
            A confection was laid on her palm, wrapped in bright foil. Kelley sniffed it critically. “Amedei?”
           The manicurist forced herself to smile. “It’s…Perugina. It’s a Baci. It means ‘kiss’. In honor of the President’s wedding. It’s still Aerugoan,” she added anxiously. “They are very good, Miss Winchell.”
           “It’s not from Amedei, it’s crap!”
The blue and silver chocolate kiss pinged off the back wall. Gladys Turlough looked down at the writer in disgust. “Cow!” She turned to the manicurist. “How much do you get paid to put up with her bullshit?” The manicurist ducked her head and mumbled something pitifully low. Gladys dug into her handbag and handed the astonished girl a 50,000 cens note. “G’wan, honey,” the actress told her kindly. “Nobody talks to a workin’ girl like that. Not around me. I’ll square it with your boss. Get goin’. Take the afternoon off—go buy a dress or somethin’.”
Reaching down, Gladys yanked out the power plug. The dryer went silent. Before Kelley Winchell could shout, Gladys grabbed Kelley’s right hand, one thumb poised just above Kelley’s fingertips. “You and me are gonna talk, Toots. Come along quiet---or….I’m gonna…smear….your polish.”
“You wouldn’t dare.”
“All ten fingers---and---“ a silver nail file now glinted in Gladys’ hand and hovered near the writer’s knee. “—if you don’t move your ass before I count to ten, I’m gonna poke a hole in your nylons.”
###
“Idiots.”
Dr. Marcoh shook his head as the black presidential staff car rolled through the front gates of Rose Hill. The front part of the property had been designated as public parkland during Roy’s administration. The private residence was accessed through an ornate wrought-iron gate nearly fifteen feet tall set into a serpentine wall of aged brick—as beautiful as it was practical, because the ivy that crawled over the bricks was a cover for razor wire and spikes and trip wires that set off alarms all over the estate. It was Russell Tringham’s apprentices  job to tend the ivy keep it looking elegant without getting themselves stabbed or sliced in the process. Russell had also used his plant alchemy to enhance certain toxins in the ivy so that it would itch and burn dramatically when brushed against the skin. Thankfully, an antidote for the rash was kept at the guardhouse where Havoc ran grounds security.
Ruby saw a few dozen rough looking men outside the gate, waving placards. “Amestrian Populists—OUR TIME HAS COME!” “Government BY THE PEOPLE!” “NO MORE FUHRERS!”
“Alchemyk Weapons Kill Babies”—Ruby shook her head over the misspelling---“FLAMING ALCHEMIST—GO HOME!”
           “He is home, moron.”  She glanced at the rear view mirror. Marcoh looked alarmed. “Fuck ‘em, Doc. Bunch of nutters. Once Samuelson gets his ass handed to him in the elections, they’ll be gone. It’ll be over.”
           Tim Marcoh shook his head. “Will they? I wonder….”
           Dr. Chen agreed. “One must never underestimate the power of foolish people in small groups….”
           The man with the misspelled sign dashed towards the car. “MUSTANG KILLS BABIES! BABY KILLER! BABY KILLER!”
           Ruby flipped the man off. “Fuck you, mac. Get out of the way!” She pounded the horn and the guards along the perimeter hurried to assist. “Get this clown off my car!” she snarled.
           In the back seat, Tim Marcoh bowed his head. Would death be the only true peace he would ever find---would the horrors of Ishbal never be laid to rest?
           A perceptive Dr. Chen laid his hand comfortingly on Marcoh’s shoulder. “A clear conscience is the strongest armor against the arrows of the past. The good you have done—the lives you have saved, the ills you have cured—and the remorse in your deepest heart---these have made you much loved and a gift to this world, my friend. And you are only a failure if you allow the past to consume you. Keep your eyes on the days ahead, my friend, and let us turn our minds towards this happy occasion.”
###
           The security briefing occurred before the assembled guests were gathered in the dining room for afternoon tea. The last guest to arrive was Mrs. Bradley, leaning on Selim’s arm, a smiling Maes welcoming them in. Collins, making his bow to the guests, reported immediately to Sebastian as Major Domo of the estate. “Sir.”
            “Collins. I will be assigning the security details as soon as Colonel Hawkeye and the military security team arrive. I am quite sure I do not have to remind you that you will be working very, very hard this weekend. I expect you to be on form, on time, in uniform and prepared for any emergency.”
           Collins bowed to his superior. “With His Excellency the Emperor and His Excellency the President in residence, I am yours to command, Sir.”
           “Very good. Allow me to introduce you to our esteemed counterpart from the Empire of Xing. This is Lan Fan, the Emperor’s own bodyguard. A formidable master of the martial arts and as dedicated to her service as Colonel Hawkeye is to protecting President Mustang.”
           Ran Fan simply glared at Sebastian for a moment before answering. “More.” She pulled a curiously carved mask over her face and stood impassively to one side as they waited for the Colonel.

           She arrived a full half hour late, “Uncharacteristic,” Sebastian observed to Ran Fan. “Colonel Hawkeye, is everything secure? Any issues?”
           “Protesters at the main gate,” she answered curtly. “They’ve been dealt with.”
           Havoc and Charlie followed after her. “An unnecessary show of force,” Charlie added. Hawkeye was about to bark out a sharp reprimand when Charlie pointed at his credentials. “I’m in Ops, Colonel. Civilian. So if you don’t like what I have to say—“
           “Ladies…gentlemen….if you please!” Sebastian clapped his hands sharply. “This is a cooperative effort between the State Military security, the Imperial Guard and Special Ops. May I emphasize the word cooperation. And may I also stress that it is desirable for us to have as few incidents as possible that could be deemed ‘front page news’.  Now then—Collins, pass these out, please—as Major Domo of the estate, I have your assignments for the wedding day. Collins—I am placing you over the family and friends, Ran Fan—your customary place is with the Emperor and his retinue. Havoc—the President and the wedding party. I will oversee the house. Dr. Knox will coordinate with the medical staff—I don’t want to see any worse medical issue than an upset stomach or hangover but we will be prepared for anything. Ramsay will have all foods tasted—Charlie will make sure no one tampers with the food. I daresay Charlie will also have to avail himself of Dr. Knox’s team to treat his indigestion—we have quite a large luncheon planned. We will also have to see about getting those surplus sheep moved out of the paddock and transferred to the petting zoo.. Colonel Hawkeye—your team will survey the grounds---“
           “My place is with the President.”
           “---the grounds, the stables and the gates. Next—“
           “My place,” Hawkeye emphasized, is with the President.”
           “Goddamn it,” Havoc muttered. “Give it up and give Roy some space to breathe.”
           “You’re out of line, Major!”
           Sebastian clapped his hands sharply for order. “For the sake of peace, Colonel, you and Major Havoc may swap assignments—“
           Havoc opened his mouth, then promptly shut it. “Whatever.” Privately he made up his mind to speak to Alphonse the first chance he could. Maybe he could talk some sense into Riza before she hurt herself any further, mooning over the man she couldn’t win and pushing away the man who was now only half-certain he could love her forever.
###
            “If I pay you, will you go away?” Kelley poked angrily at a half-eaten chicken salad sandwich that Gladys had ordered for her.
           “Why are you so goddamn mean?”
           “Because I’m good at it. And being nice doesn’t pay the rent. Now,” she checked her nails for any smudges, “why are you bothering me?”
           “I’m your date.”
           A bite of chicken went down sideways and Kelley hastily gulped down some water. She coughed for a minute or two, gesturing for Gladys to refrain from slapping her on the back. Once she got her breath back, she informed the actress that she hadn’t quite heard her correctly. “You’re finding me a date?”
           “I AM your date, Toots.”
           “I don’t like other women.”
           Gladys smiled. “You don’t like anybody, so there shouldn’t be a problem. See, you’re not exactly friends of the family…but Mistah President says he wants you to be there for some damn reason---and he says bring your notebook.”
           This was preposterous. The idea---that Roy Mustang would even suggest such an outrageous thing….”Out of the question. I will go with the press corp.”
           “You ain’t the press, Toots. You’re a blood suckin’ leech and you tried to hurt a really good man. Mistah Alphonse says if I can’t persuade you, he can send Colonel Hawkeye over to give you a ride.”
           Alphonse Elric…. The memory of that motorcycle ride they took together still made her knees faintly weak.” Alphonse put you up to this?”
           “Yeah.” Her eyes sparkled. “He’s a swell guy. And I’m goin’ because I’m gonna sing for entertainment. So here’s the deal: go as my date or that tight-ass Colonel Hawkeye escorts you—and she’s nowhere as much fun as I am. Didn’t I just buy you lunch? Didn’t I pay for your damn manicure? I know how to treat a lady---I even know how to treat a lady-in-name-only, if youse excuse the term.” She wrinkled her nose. “How else you gonna get in the VIP tent with all the swells if I don’t get you in? It ain’t like you gotta kiss me, fer Leto’s sake. You ain’t my type.”
           “Why I never---“
           “Don’t knock it ‘til you try it, Doll. You have no idea how much fun you can have in bed with a good gal-pal, a pound of chocolate, some champagne and,” she waggled two fingers, “the right kind of manicure!”
###
           “Where do you think you’re going?”
           Ed shrugged, gathering up his dressing gown, tooth brush and a change of clothing. “Ah, you know Gracia and Winry. All that wedding superstition. They say I gotta sleep somewhere else tonight. It’s bad luck for us to see each other after midnight.”
           Roy lifted one eyebrow. “Have you considered exactly how many guests we have under our roof tonight? Between our friends and Ling’s entourage and the extra security teams, there isn’t a room to spare in the whole house.”
           “I figured I’d bunk with Maes.”
           “Who’s probably bunking with Collins….or Peta….or both.”
           “Okay, then. I ‘ll stay with Al.”
           “Do you know for sure he’s not sharing his bed with Gladys Turlough.”
           “Al?” Ed chuckled. “Not with that one.”
           “She’s female,” Roy began ticking off items with his fingers. “She’s got a pulse, and she probably owns more sex toys than we do.”
            “She gave Havoc the clap, you forget.”
           “And you gave Al the condom receiver from Tsar Dimitri.”
           Ed shook his head in exasperation. “Okay, fine. I’ll stay here.”
           “I knew you’d come around.” His fiancée offered him a smug grin. “Now get under the covers.”
           “Well….I guess its okay if there’s no fucking.”
           Roy looked innocent. “I wouldn’t dream of jinxing our wedding day by taking advantage of you.”
           “Good.”
           Ed snapped off the light.
           A few minutes later, he noticed a soft, rhythmic sound. A skin-on-skin sound he was embarrassingly familiar with. He slapped the pillow over his ears. “Go to sleep, goddamn it.”
           “Mmmmmmm….yeah…..hnnnnnggggg!”
           “Quit it, you jerk!”
           “Did you say ‘jerk’?” The slap-slap cadence grew louder. “Was that a suggestion?”
            A fist in the dark socked Roy on the shoulder. “It was an order. Knock it off!”
           “Take it easy, Ed. I’m a big boy. I can hold out till tomorrow…if you can…”
           Cursing into the mattress, Ed squeezed his eyes shut and tried to sleep, knowing that the man beside him was naked, hard and laughing at him—the last of which was what got to him more than anything else.
           He tossed. He turned. He mentally repeated the periodic table of elements.
           Abruptly, he rolled over and grabbed his lover’s cock. His tongue was about to flick down for a taste when a voice in the dark stopped him. “It’s after midnight, Ed. You want to give us bad luck?”
            “GODDAMNIT!!!!!”

….TO BE CONTINUED….
          
         
 
 
amethyst_koneko: kitty Edamethyst_koneko on September 16th, 2013 01:06 am (UTC)
the future Mr. Mustang Yeah, I admit it. I squeed. ^_^ There was a part of me tho that wondered if Roy ever considered becoming the future Mr Elric. :)

a madman waving a cleaver and screaming himself purple Can you believe it took me till now to put two and two together and realize where Chef Ramsay got his name? D'OH! :D

“They better give it to you, Al. Those two probably don’t use ‘em and you, on the other hand, own a shared interest in a rubber tree plantation---“ XDDD This line for the win!

The Eagle's Nest. I see what you did there! ^_~ Wonder if anybody else knows the significance of this reference. :)

Riza. *sigh* Havoc's not the only one feeling pity for her. :( What the heck is she thinking? What possible good can come from her tagging along like this? “My place,” Hawkeye emphasized, "is with the President.” smh. :/

Gladys vs Kelley! Smear the nail polish AND poke a hole in the nylons?! gasp! The woman knows how to fight dirty! XD

“Don’t knock it ‘til you try it, Doll. You have no idea how much fun you can have in bed with a good gal-pal, a pound of chocolate, some champagne and,” she waggled two fingers, “the right kind of manicure!” Now why doesn't it surprise me that Gladys knows this? :) Gives a whole new meaning to her being the "Ice Cream" Blonde! ^_~

“I figured I’d bunk with Maes.” “Who’s probably bunking with Collins….or Peta….or both.” hehe! My money's on both! :D

“It’s after midnight, Ed. You want to give us bad luck?” "GODDAMNIT!!!!!” LOL! That was mean, Roy! :D

With all this going on the day before the wedding, makes you wonder be afraid! what the actual wedding day will bring! :)
The Binary Alchemist: BEATbinaryalchemist on September 16th, 2013 10:41 pm (UTC)
"The future Mr Asshole" is what Ed would call himself ::grins:: They won't be changing names or hyphenating but I think Nina will--she is very proud of her Poppy.
Ahhahhaaa! You caught Gordon!!! I do throw these little bits in and I love it when somebody catches me!!
And you caught the Eagle's Nest--originally mentioned in "Cease Fire"--seemed very appropriate to name Bradley's getaway after Hitler's retreat
Riza....I can almost understand why he turned to Gladys if she is throwing her happiness away with both hands...
I've come to love Gladys---I would definitely want her on MY side in a fight--especially a cat fight!
Don't forget, it was a three way with another blonde that Havoc caught his dose from --Gladys is a real "Trapeze artist"" (nudge nudge wink wink))
Given the choice between sex and science, Peta actually prefers science--but Professor Lobachevsky won't get off her back about settling down. She and Maes are old friends and cocomspirators and she knows and supports his relationship with Collins--btw, she is modeled after Agatha Heterodyne!
Already at work on the wedding--and thank you for being one of the few still reading this---your feedback helps me keep going.