Excerpts below, shared to hopefully kickstart my creative engine! Enjoy, and let me know what you think:
McTrekkies (H50, McDanno):
“First of all, you are SO Captain Kirk–”
“And I don’t see where that’s an insult. He’s the Captain, he’s the hero. How is it–”
“He’s reckless, he’s impulsive, he’s–”
“You realize those are the same thing, right?”
“HE’S AN ANIMAL. A glory-obsessed animal! He destroyed his stepfather’s car and a Galaxy Class–”
“That’s Constitution Class. You’re mixing your generations now.”
Danny was already shaking his head as Steve strolled in behind him.
“Don’t even try to tell me you’re not Bones McCoy.”
Danny turned back to Steve, hands spread wide with a smile. “You mean the genius doctor who gets Jim on the Enterprise after he got caught cheating on the Kobayashi Maru? The one who pulls Steve’s fat out of the fire every time he gets into trouble?”
“Do you know you called him Steve just now?”
“That’s beside the point. You just don’t want to admit that my character is smarter and Jim Kirk wouldn’t be the same without his trusty Doctor.”
Deaton was waiting for him, and held the door open and nodded towards his office in the back. He could hear the barking of the various dogs that were currently recovering from illness or surgery and needed a little extra attention. Once Deaton closed the door it was thankfully quiet again.
“Doctor, if it’s all the same to you, I’d like to just write you a check for whatever we still owe. I’ve…” He shook his head. “I’ve just had enough of sympathy this week.”
Deaton shook his head. “There’s no balance to settle. Just a last bit of business that you might have forgotten in all of the goings-on.” He continued when Derek frowned. “Just before your parents came home, one of Honeydew’s puppies became ill, and you brought her here for fluids and treatment.”
Derek raised his chin with the memory, a tiny ball of fluff in his coat, burning too hot even for a puppy, and fading fast. “Right. We weren’t even expecting her. Honey was only supposed to have two.” He had forgotten her, and now she was gone too. “I’m sorry. I’ll pay for the…disposal. And for any treatment that–“
He blinked as Deaton reached under his desk, and he heard the sound of a crate being opened. A moment later, he accepted the sleepy, squirming ball of fluff that Deaton handed him.
“Actually, she pulled through just fine. She’d picked up a nasty case of coccidia, but she’s all clear now. She’s even had her first round of shots.” Deaton smiled. “We took care of her while you were dealing with the arrangements, but I thought it was time you two were together again.”
He looked at her as she licked and nibbled at his fingers, already prepared to hand her back over and tell Deaton to find her a home, he didn’t want any part of it anymore. The longer he held her, though, and the longer he felt Deaton’s eyes on them, he knew that this was the last bit of his family they both had left. Also, even as a bumbling pup, he couldn’t turn off what he’d learned during his Junior Showmanship days and what he’d learned by watching from the grooming table and at ringside. He could see her potential: the white blaze on her forehead, the white tip on her wagging tail, and her bright little eyes that didn’t know it was just the two of them against the world.
She reared up, her little paws on his chest, and meeped at him.
He stroked his thumb between her eyes and smiled for the first time in over a week. “Beaker.” He could come up with her kennel name later. “Thank you.” He wasn’t sure if he was thanking the puppy or Deaton, but he looked up at the latter and nodded to him.
Deaton smiled at them both. “I’m glad I could bring you together.”
Beaker promptly peed in his lap.
Rachael hadn’t arrived yet when the inner doors opened and he and Grace both stood up. “Detective Williams?” The vet looked young, but older than the techs that had come out to take the dog back to her. “I’m Doctor Kekoa. You’re the one that brought the dog in?”
“That’s me, that’s…what can you tell us, Doc?”
The vet looked at Grace, then at him. “Perhaps we can talk over here?”
Danny squeezed Grace’s shoulder. “Baby, I have to talk to the Doctor in private, all right? I’ll be right back. Your mom’s gonna be here soon, go ahead and wait for her.” He waited until she sat down and ached at the haunted look on her face; he took a deep breath, then turned to talk to the vet. “How’s ah, how’s he doing?”
“The dog is in stable condition. He has a fractured leg and a severely bruised hip, plus some bumps and scrapes from being thrown into the road. He needs surgery to set his leg, and he’ll need cage rest, medication, and close supervision for a few weeks while he heals.” She sighed. “We examined him for a chip, and it’s been too damaged for us to get a reading from it. As of now, we’re classifying him as a stray.”
Danny nodded. “But he’s stable? You can treat his injuries?”
“Detective, I know this may sound crass, but unless someone can assume the up front costs of his care, I’m afraid there’s not much we can do if he’s just going to go to a shelter.” She glanced behind him at where he knew Grace was waiting. “We can make it painless for him, and you can tell your little girl he didn’t make it. I just wanted to check with you first.”
Danny felt his ears, then his face heat up, at the memory of the dog’s trusting brown eyes before he let the techs take him in, and at the idea of lying to his daughter just to save a few bucks, and forced his jaw to relax as he answered her. “Doc, you are gonna fix him up.” He reached back to his wallet and offered the doctor his one credit card. “I’ll be back to take him home when he’s ready to go.”
“Detective, are you sure–”
“My apartment allows pets, you said yourself he’s going to be fine if he gets medical care, and I am not…” He pressed his fist to his lips. “I am not going to go over there and lie to my little girl so she doesn’t know that Daddy was too cheap to save an innocent dog.”
This was crazy. He was going to be paying on this for years if he didn’t go to a loan shark first. “You fix him up. I’ll deal with the rest when he’s ready to come home.”
Doctor Kekoa smiled. “I’ll get started right away. Leave your contact information with the front desk. They’ll take your deposit and they’ll call you to let you know how he’s doing and when he’s ready to be released.”
“Thank you. Thank you, Doctor. I’ll just…yeah. Go fix him up.” He ran his hand through his hair and turned to see both Rachael and Grace looking at him, the former anxious and the latter fighting back tears. He forced a smile past the debt he was going to rack up with this. “C’mere, monkey.”
He hugged Grace as she reached him and he picked her up, carrying her back to Rachael. “He’s gonna be okay, Grace. He has a broken leg, but the doc is headed back there right now to fix him up.” He kissed her cheek. “He’ll be up and around in no time.”
Grace hugged him tight around the neck. “Are you gonna keep him?”
“Am I gonna keep him? Well, someone has to look after him once he’s had his leg fixed, and they can’t find an owner for him, so it looks like I’ll be taking care of him.”
Grace hugged him again, and drew back to look at him with a very serious look. “He needs you, and he can keep you company like Mickey did. It’s not good for you to be alone all the time.”
Danny glanced over her shoulder at Rachael and wondered how much of what she said was what she might have overheard.
“She worries about you,” Rachael said, and her eyes softened in a way that suggested that Grace might not be the only one who worried.
“Well you don’t need to worry about me, Grace.” He hefted her on his hip and kissed her cheek. “What I do want you to do is go home and think of a very good name for this pooch that’s gonna keep me company. Can you do that for me? Soon as I get a good picture, I’ll send it to you, and by the time he comes home he’s gonna need a name.”
Grace smiled. “Okay, Danno.”