Happy Birthday nietie! Hope you had a lovely day.
Title: Going For It
Pairing/characters: Becker/Stephen, Abby, Lester
Warnings: Occasional mild language
Disclaimer: Not mine. ITV and Impossible Pictures own them.
Word count: Approx 1125
Summary: All Becker needed was a date for one night. How difficult could it be?
AN: Birthday fic for nietie
AN2: Fills the trope bingo square ‘coming out (of the closet)’.
Becker was hiding in the locker rooms when Abby and Stephen wandered in, laughing at something. Becker hoped it wasn’t him they were laughing at. Right then, he wouldn’t be surprised if that was the case.
“Hi Becker,” Abby smiled at him. She paused, looked harder, and then added, “Are you okay?”
God, was he that obvious?
“Yeah, fine. Just...”
“Hiding,” Abby finished.
“No I’m not!” Becker protested.
Stephen had his back turned as he rummaged in his locker, but the chuckle was hard to miss.
Oh, wonderful, thought Becker.
“So you’re not hiding from that group of girls we passed in the corridor outside, then?” Abby was smirking.
“They’re still out there?” Becker asked. Even he could hear the slight note of panic in his voice, so he wasn’t really surprised when Abby giggled, and Stephen failed to disguise a laugh as a cough.
“They do seem quite keen,” Abby observed, still grinning. “And everyone knows you still don’t have a date for this formal dinner thing.”
Like he needed reminding! Honestly, exactly who had thought that inviting the core ARC team to a formal dinner with everybody who was anybody in the worlds of science, business, and politics was a good idea? Just because the anomalies had gone public, suddenly they kept being followed and interviewed and invited to do things. Becker frequently wished they could just go back to being a secret organisation, and let Jenny deal with the small talk and politics.
But no. They were all supposed to be guests of honour at this formal dinner, and Lester had told them in no uncertain terms that there was no getting out of it. Equally unavoidable, apparently, was the need for a ‘plus one’.
Which was the reason why he was currently hiding in the locker room from half the women in the ARC.
“Look, Becker, you need to get a date one way or another. Why not one of them?” Abby asked, more serious this time.
“Because I’m not even remotely interested in any of them,” Becker said.
“You need a date for one night. It’s not like you’re asking them to marry you!” Abby suddenly looked at him with a slightly unnerving stare. “Unless... Becker, is there someone that you are interested in?”
Becker decided it was probably safer not to answer that, but apparently the fact that he had probably gone bright red was enough confirmation for Abby.
“There is! Becker, you dark horse. So come on, tell me. Who is it?”
“I am absolutely not telling you.”
“Go on,” Abby wheedled.
“No. And before you go any further, I have been trained to withstand questioning and torture from far more skilled people than you, Abby Maitland.”
“Fine. But why haven’t you just asked whoever it is? At least that way those women might leave you alone once they know you’ve got someone.”
She did have a good point, Becker conceded. But there was one slight problem.
“It’s not actually that easy. I’m no good at that sort of thing. What if they say no?”
Abby stared at him, incredulous.
“Becker, have you looked in a mirror lately? No one is going to say no.” She paused. “Well, except me, but that’s mostly because I’m already going with Connor, and I have major philosophical problems about going out with someone who is willing to shoot defenceless animals.”
“Well it’s a good thing it isn’t you then,” Becker managed to grin.
“Seriously, Becker, whoever the lucky lady is, just ask her. It’s really not difficult.”
She patted his knee and then got up and grabbed a towel and change of clothes and headed for the showers.
Suddenly a locker slammed shut behind him. Becker spun round.
Shit! He’d completely forgotten Stephen was there. And now Stephen knew exactly how pathetic he was. Bloody wonderful.
Stephen didn’t seem to be laughing, though. He looked strangely thoughtful.
“Listen mate, Abby’s right. Just be confident, be yourself, and go for it.”
“If it’s that easy, why haven’t you got a date yet either?” Becker muttered, rather petulantly.
Stephen smirked. “I’m working on it.”
Before Becker could come up with a response Stephen walked out.
“Oh, that’s just bloody brilliant,” Becker muttered under his breath.
The date of the formal dinner was fast approaching, and Becker still hadn’t got a ‘plus one’. Abby had taken to pouncing on him every time she saw an opportunity to get him alone, and insisted on giving him the third degree about whether or not he had made a move. Even worse than Abby, though, was the ever more persistent, and ever more blatant, gaggle of women who somehow seemed to be waiting for him around every corner in the ARC.
Becker retaliated by finding ever more obscure places to hide. He wasn’t proud of it, but at least it meant he got a bit of peace.
With three days still to go, Becker was making his way across the atrium when he was cornered by Lester.
“Captain, it has come to my attention that you are still without a partner for the dinner on Thursday.” Lester did not look amused.
Behind Lester’s shoulder, Abby had been chatting with Stephen, but was suddenly doing a very bad job of pretending that she wasn’t listening.
“Might I remind you,” Lester continued, “That not only is attendance mandatory, but so is attendance with a partner.”
“Yes, I’m working on it,” Becker said.
“Might I suggest that you work on it faster,” Lester said in that voice he used when he expected to be obeyed immediately. So, actually, not much different to his usual voice.
Becker heard a giggle, and spotted the girls from palaeobotany loitering in the doorway, watching him.
Something inside Becker snapped. Enough was enough.
“Right. Fine. Leave it with me.”
He turned and marched over to Abby and Stephen, grabbed Stephen and dragged him into a fierce, bruising kiss. There was a heart stopping moment when Stephen failed to respond in any way, and then suddenly Stephen was kissing him back, his hand coming to rest on Becker’s hip and pulling him closer.
When they eventually parted, Becker was pleased to see that Stephen looked ever so slightly flushed.
“So, want to be my date for this dinner on Thursday?” Becker said.
“Thought you’d never ask.”
Becker grinned right back, and then kissed him again, just because he could.
Somewhere over to his left, he was vaguely aware of Abby and Lester watching them.
“Is it me, or did Becker just come out as gay right in the middle of the atrium?” Abby asked, somewhat rhetorically.
“Yes, I believe he did,” Lester said. He paused, and then added, “About bloody time, as well.”