brbsoulnomming: (grimm - interrogation)
Bri ([personal profile] brbsoulnomming) wrote2011-11-20 08:16 pm

Grimm Fic - Seeing Red

Title: Seeing Red
Author: brbsoulnomming
Rating: Teen-ish?
Pairing: Background Nick/Juliette, pre-slash Nick/Monroe kind of
Wordcount: 5,279
Summary: "Look, my family would disown me if they found out I even looked at a Grimm without trying to get revenge on him, let alone was actually friends with one."

A sort-of Thanksgiving filled with awkwardness, alcohol, and the potential for violence.

Notes: For [ profile] coffeeordeath, who wanted Thanksgiving fic. Could be seen as either gen or pre-slash. Takes place after episode four, Lonelyhearts.

Nick wasn’t sure how much of a conscious decision it was, but after that first case with the blutbad mailman, he stopped wearing red very often, especially outdoors. It might not have been much of a precaution, since he’d been wearing red most of his life and nothing’d ever happened, but things had changed. He couldn’t be too careful.

Besides, there was Monroe to consider now. He’d probably have been a lot less willing to help out if Nick showed up at his house in a red jacket or something.

So outside, he tended to forgo the red. But when he was just hanging out at home, watching the game or curled up with Juliette, he didn’t worry about it. He’d always tended to just grab whatever was clean, comfortable, and close at hand (in ascending order of importance), and that wasn’t likely to change any time soon.

That morning was one of those days. Juliette had some nature documentary on the TV, which wasn’t exactly his idea of riveting entertainment, but it made her happy, so he put up with it. He was mostly reading, anyway – not Aunt Marie’s book, but the commercially available version of Grimm’s fairy tales. He had one arm draped loosely around Juliette, but she was wrapped up in a blanket, resting against him but leaning slightly away, paying more attention to the show than to him.

A fairly typical morning, as of late, at least when neither of them were working.

He was halfway through The Robber Bridegroom when the doorbell rang. Nick looked up and debated ignoring it, but a second ring before he’d come to a conclusion had him shutting the book and pulling his arm from around Juliette.

“If it ends up being a case, call me when you’re on your way home, or text if I’m already at work, so I don’t worry about you being out too late?” Juliette asked without looking away from the television.

“If it ends up being a case, I’m telling them to solve it without me,” Nick grumbled as he headed to the door, even though he knew that wasn’t true at all.

The bell’d been rung a third time by the time Nick got to the door and opened it, revealing Monroe standing on his front porch.

Nick’s first reaction was a smile, because he always had one of those ready for a friend, but it turned quickly into confused concern, around the time ‘what’s up?’ faded into ‘did you look up where I live?’ and ‘oh, shit, what’s up?’ It wasn’t as though he has any real objection to Monroe coming over, despite his decision to try and keep the Grimm stuff as separate from his personal life as possible until he had a better handle on it – so pretty much forever – but he wasn’t stupid. He knew Monroe wouldn’t actually make the effort to hunt up his address and come over if it wasn’t something serious.

Which he was only more certain of when he didn’t even get a chance to ask any of the above questions before Monroe was shouldering his way in, pacing into the hall, looking irritable and a little bit twitchy.

“What happened?” Nick asked, not bothering to hide either his worry or his weariness. It was Thanksgiving morning; he’d been hoping to get a break from both police work and Grimm stuff for at least a few hours. “Is someone in trouble? Are you in trouble?”

“No, it’s-” Monroe cut off there, as his pacing turned him back towards Nick. His eyes finally settled on Nick, and then they widened.

Nick could see fear and something darker there, for an instant, and then Monroe’s eyes were suddenly red, and his face shifted briefly before returning to human. Monroe snarled, tearing his gaze away and backing a few steps away from Nick.

“Do you just - enjoy taunting death?” Monroe demanded, his voice a pitch higher than normal.

It was only then that Nick remembered he was wearing his Winterhawks hoodie. His red Winterhawks hoodie.

“Oh, shit.”

“Just take it off,” Monroe grit out through clenched teeth, still looking at anywhere but him.

“How was I supposed to know you were going to suddenly make an appearance?” Nick asked, but he was yanking the hoodie off as he did, throwing it into the living room and out of sight. “It’s gone.”

“I didn’t realize you had a monopoly on suddenly appearing at someone’s house,” Monroe retorted, though he didn’t acknowledge Nick’s last comment and remained staring elsewhere.

Nick figured he was still trying to get himself under control, so he let that comment slide. “You want some coffee, or something?”

“Yeah, sure, that’d be-”

Monroe didn’t get to finish for the second time that morning, because Juliette picked that moment to wander in from the living room, likely out of curiosity from either hearing their voices or seeing Nick’s hoodie get tossed into the room. She still had her blanket wrapped around her shoulders, which also happened to be a brilliant shade of red.

Seriously?” Monroe asked, throwing up his hands. “I should have known coming here would be a death trap.”

“Juliette, would you go back into the living room, please?” Nick asked, keeping his voice deliberately calm.

“What? Why? Nick, are you-” She reached for him, dislodging the blanket from her shoulder and causing the red material to sway.

Monroe made a noise halfway between a whimper and a growl. “That’s it. I’m out of here.”

“Monroe, wait,” Nick started, but Monroe pushed past him, and Nick could see red flashing in his eyes.

“Not happening, man,” Monroe replied.

Nick didn’t press him. Instead, he called, “I’ll make this up to you!” as Monroe fled out the front door.

Juliette stared after him, then looked at Nick. “What was that about?”

“He has erythryphobia,” Nick lied smoothly. “Fear of the color red.” Yeah, he’d looked that up, under the assumption that he might have to one day explain something like this. It never hurt to be prepared.

Juliette blinked, confused, then her expression turned to sympathy. “Oh. Poor guy. I wonder how he deals with stop signs.”

“He ignores them,” Nick grumbled, remembering Monroe’s driving while hanging out the window. “But, uh, I think it’s mostly red clothing that’s the problem.”

Juliette nodded, though she didn’t look like she understood. “Who is he?”

“A friend of mine, Monroe. I met him on a case,” Nick said.

“What do you think he wanted?” Juliette asked.

Nick shrugged. “I don’t know. But if it was important, he’ll call me or something. Come on, let’s get lunch started before you have to get to work.”

After their Thanksgiving lunch, with Juliette off at work for the foreseeable future, Nick headed over to Monroe’s house to see what he’d wanted, and brought along a six pack of the beers he knew Monroe drank as an apology for the red stuff.

When he knocked on the door, though, Monroe answered it looking first irritated and harried, and then worried.

“What are you doing here?” Monroe hissed, stepping out on the front porch and closing the door behind him.

Nick raised an eyebrow. “You came over this morning, remember? I wanted to see what you wanted.”

“Couldn’t you just call, like a normal person?” Monroe asked.

Nick held up the beer. “I brought you this, you know, to make up for the red stuff.”

“Right, yes, beer absolutely makes up for almost making me homicidal – and that’s not sarcasm, it just sounds like it because I only have one mode right now, which is sarcasm – but you need to get out of here,” Monroe said.

Nick frowned. “Why?”

“Because a few members of my family decided to show up here with as little warning as possible. That’s what I was trying to warn you about this morning,” Monroe told him.

“Your fam – oh,” Nick said.

“Yes, oh. Look, my family would disown me if they found out I even looked at a Grimm without trying to get revenge on him, let alone was actually friends with one,” Monroe said.

Nick was absolutely aware of the danger, but that didn’t stop him from giving a slight smirk at Monroe’s admitting they were friends, or adding, “Wonder what they’d do if they found out you were a sidekick to one.”

Monroe somehow managed to glare at him and stare incredulously at the same time. “Forget taunting death. I think you’re actually suicidal.”

“Hey, I’m not wearing red.”

“That doesn’t take away my extreme desire to kill you right now.”

Nick grinned at him. “Yeah, but you won’t.”

“I might if you don’t leave right now,” Monroe replied, but any anger in his words was mostly hidden in tight, irritated worry. “You’re lucky they haven’t smelled you already or-” He paused. “Why haven’t they smelled you already? Hell, why didn’t I smell you before you got to the door?” Monroe stared at him, looking aghast and the slightest bit offended. “Are you wearing wolfsbane?”

Nick’s grin turned sheepish as guilt warred with defensiveness. “I wasn’t sure you’d even answer the door that first time if you could smell it was me.” And after that, it’d become habit.

“Oh, sure, now you learn to be sneaky,” Monroe grumbled.

“Good thing I did, today,” Nick pointed out.

Monroe gestured dismissively. “Yeah, yeah, congratulations you, you managed to hide from a group of blutbaden. Now go do it somewhere else.” His eyes darkened a bit. “One of us might as well be able to.”

Nick frowned. “Why would you want to hide somewhere else?”

Monroe made another gesture, frustrated. “I told you, bad things tend to happen when we get into packs. Besides, my family – they’re like the postcard for awkward reunions. Awkward, uncomfortable reunions that drag on forever because no one wants to be the first to back down.”

Nick considered that for a moment, then held up the six pack, shaking it slightly like an enticement. “Come hide with me, then. Play hooky.”

Monroe rolled his eyes. “I can’t just play hooky from Thanksgiving. Anyway, shouldn’t you be with that girl of yours? Or the rest of your family, bragging about all of your kills over your jagerbar head centerpiece, or however you guys Grimm up Thanksgiving?”

Nick felt his shoulders slump slightly, and quickly straightened them again. “Marie was all I had left of my family.”

Monroe paused, looking uncomfortable. “Oh. Sorry.”

The front door opened before Nick could reply, and a middle aged man bearing a slight resemblance to Monroe looked out.

“Edward, are you-” the man cut off when he spotted Nick, his gaze moving down to the beer in his hand before looking back up to frown at him. “Ah. We didn’t realize you were expecting company.”

He was eying Nick with a mixture of curiosity and suspicion, as if there was something unsettling about Nick that he couldn’t place. He was also sniffing the air slightly – subtly enough that Nick likely wouldn’t have noticed if he wasn’t looking for it. Nick did his best to project harmlessness, something he was normally fairly good at.

“Plans I didn’t have a chance to cancel, since you guys gave me such short notice,” Monroe said, holding himself very still. “And by short, I mean none.”

The man shifted his gaze to Monroe. “If you’d mentioned you had plans before, we probably wouldn’t have come at all.”

Monroe snorted. “Yeah, you would.”

The man smiled slightly. “Your mother is quite persistent.” He looked back to Nick, frowning again. “Aren’t you going to introduce us?”

“Right,” Monroe said, obviously trying – and failing somewhat – to hide his tenseness. “Nick, this is my uncle Jameson. Uncle Jameson, Nick.”

Nick smiled disarmingly. “Nice to meet you, and I’m sorry for the interruption. Like I was telling Monroe, I’ll leave you guys to it, catch up with him la-”

Jameson shifted suddenly, red eyes narrowing in furious comprehension. “Grimm!”

He lunged for Nick, claws outstretched, but Nick dodged, his own hands palm out in an obvious ‘I mean you no harm’ gesture. That unfortunately had no affect on Jameson, who tackled him. Nick rolled, moving with the force rather than trying to resist it, and took control of it as they tumbled off the porch so that he ended up on top of Jameson. Nick promptly pushed away, rolling to his feet and backing off. When Jameson also leapt to his feet and came for him again, Nick pulled his gun.

“Stay where you are,” he said. “I don’t want to hurt you.”

“Lies,” Jameson growled, though he stopped moving. “You’re a Grimm.”

“No he’s not,” Monroe said quickly. He’d moved when they did, following with them, and stood a bit away from them, equal distance from both of them but not getting in between them. “He just looks like one. It’s unfortunate, really, but he can’t help being that ugly-”

Nick wisely resisted the urge to protest that, thought it was partially due to the fact that Jameson cut Monroe off with a slight sneer.

“I may be considered soft, boy, but I’m not an idiot,” Jameson said. “Why else would he have a gun pointed at me?”

“Uh, maybe because you jumped on me like you were trying to strangle me?” Nick suggested, for all the world like he hadn’t been able to see that those outstretched hands were really claws. He used his free hand to flick back a corner of his coat, revealing the badge clipped to his belt. “We like to call that assaulting a police officer.”

Jameson hesitated at seeing the badge, looking uncertain. “You’re a police officer?”

“Yeah, and you’re lucky he’s not the kind of cop who tazes everyone who looks at him funny. Just – go back inside before you make things worse, so I can try and convince Nick that my family’s crazy, but not normally in the attacking random people way,” Monroe said.

His tone was similar to one he’d used on Nick before, the one that said ‘stop talking about this in front of the Muggles’ – apparently even fairy tale characters liked Harry Potter.

For a moment, it seemed like it was going to work. Jameson was still eying him with suspicion, but also with growing uncertainty, while Nick continued to pretend that he had no idea the man was anything other than human and absolutely couldn’t see any claws, fangs, or angry red eyes. Jameson even took a step or two back towards the front porch. But then the door, which Jameson had left partly open, opened wider as two women – one a little older than Jameson, one who looked roughly Nick’s age – stepped outside.

“Edward, what-” the older woman started, but cut off when she saw Nick and Jameson’s stand off.

There was a moment of silence. Then the older woman snarled and flew down the steps, shifting as she joined Jameson, followed closely by the younger woman.

“What are you doing here, Grimm?” the older woman demanded.

“Well, I was visiting a friend,” Nick replied conversationally, as if he didn’t have a gun pointed at them. “But now I’m making a mental note to always call before stopping by in the future.”

Monroe groaned. “So much for a peaceful resolution.”

“Hey, have a little optimism,” Nick commented. “We can still get out of this with no bloodshed.”

“Fine, so much for getting out of this without my ass getting disowned,” Monroe replied with a growl.

He’d moved closer to Nick now, which Nick couldn’t help but notice, and knew the others wouldn’t miss it, either.

Sure enough, the older woman’s eyes narrowed. “You’re allying yourself with a Grimm? Are you insane?”

“Trust me, I’m still asking myself that,” Monroe muttered. “Look, he’s not like the other Grimms, okay? He’s reasonable.”

Nick wondered briefly what it said about the other Grimms, that tackling Monroe to the floor, accusing him of kidnapping, searching his house, and later dragging him into help solve said kidnapping was considered reasonable behavior in comparison. He kept that observation to himself – at least until later, anyway, when he wasn’t faced with three angry blutbaden.

“Yes - reasonable,” the younger woman said with a snort. “That’s why he came here on Thanksgiving to point a gun at us.”

“Actually, I came here to bring Monroe some beer,” Nick said helpfully. “Which, by the way, is all over the porch now. The gun only came after I was attacked.”

“You still came here unannounced, armed and wearing wolfsbane to hide your scent,” the older woman growled.

“I’m a cop. I’m always armed.” Nick didn’t have a response to the wolfsbane thing, other than what he’d already told Monroe. Which was true – along with a little bit of ‘it’s funny getting Monroe to growl at me’ – but he doubted either of those would go over well.

“He’s telling the truth,” Monroe said. He’d moved even closer now, near enough to touch.

“And you think that makes things better?” the older woman demanded. “A Grimm with the power of the law behind him, in charge of enforcing that law? He’s more dangerous than any of the rest of them! A ready excuse to hunt us down and the means to make it justified in the eyes of human law.”

Nick kept up his casual demeanor, refusing to allow the implications of that to affect him. Or at least not to let it show. “I’m a cop. I protect innocent people, I don’t hunt them down.”

The younger woman snarled. “You’re a Grimm. To you, innocent means human. You’re no different from the rest of them, except maybe to be worse.” She glared at Monroe. “And if we have to go through you to get him, we will.” There was a threat in her voice – likely intended to force Monroe’s hand, get him to step aside – but she still meant it. And Nick knew just by looking at the other two that they’d back her up.

Nick dropped the friendly demeanor, making the adjustment from treating this like a situation with people he was trying to talk down but were also a potential threat, to hostiles in a situation that needed immediate resolution. Like he kept saying, he was a cop; his first instinct was to protect. Without moving his gun from the three shifted blutbaden, Nick reached out to grab Monroe’s arm, carefully nudging his friend slightly behind him.

“Try it. If you touch him,” Nick said calmly, eyes narrowed and dangerous. “I will kill you.”

He was already calculating how to take them out. They weren’t stupid, they’d attack him all at once to take advantage of their superior numbers, but he could shoot two of them before they could get to him. Debilitating shots, not fatal – despite his words, this was still Monroe’s family, and whatever Monroe’s relationship with them, Nick wasn’t going to be the one to take that away. The third he’d have to fight, but he knew their weakness: hit a bundle of nerves in their lower back, and they’d be down long enough for Monroe and him to get out of there.

Nick’d started trying to figure out who would be the best to take out first, going pretty much entirely by instinct, when Jameson frowned at him.

“You’re speaking the truth,” Jameson said.

“Yeah,” Nick replied, then paused. “Which one are you talking about? Because I’ve been speaking the truth the whole time, and-”

Monroe elbowed him, and Nick shut up.

“A Grimm protecting a blutbad,” Jameson stated, his tone a mix of disbelief, curiosity, and something almost like amusement.

“A cop protecting a friend,” Nick countered, but the words didn’t have any harshness to them. “If we could just forget about this Grimm thing, that’d be awesome.”

Forget-” the older woman started, but Jameson placed his hand on her shoulder.

“He is right about one thing, at least,” Jameson said. “Whatever else, he is a police officer. Attacking him now will bring us troubles we do not want, Louisa.”

Louisa paused, apparently considering that, then changed back into human form. Jameson followed suit immediately, and the other woman waited a few moments, obviously reluctant, before changing back as well.

“My brother is right,” Louisa said, grimacing. “For the moment.”

“Are you serious?” the younger woman asked. “Of course he claims to protect the blutbad he’s ensnared as a pet, this means nothing.”

Monroe growled. “Shut up, Sarah. What are you, four, resorting to name calling?”

Nick stepped aside, handing control of the situation back to Monroe in a move he figured would be more effective than anything he could say.

“Don’t like hearing the truth, Monroe?” Sarah asked, oblivious to Nick, but Jameson and Louisa were eying him speculatively.

Monroe rolled his eyes. “Just because your boyfriend-”

“Edward,” Jameson said softly.

Monroe held up his hands. “Yeah, yeah. But she started it.”

“I’ll finish it!” Sarah informed him.

Sarah,” Jameson said, half annoyed and half exasperated.

Sarah crossed her arms, but didn’t say anything else.

Louisa was still glaring at Nick, and Nick held her gaze, refusing to back down. Or – fidget uncomfortably, though he was slightly less successful on that one.

“Mom,” Monroe said, and Louisa turned to look at him. “You’ve made your point, all right? Go back before you miss dinner.”

Louisa sighed. “Your father isn’t going to be pleased with this.”

Monroe shrugged. “Dad’s never pleased.”

With a final glare, Louisa stalked off down the driveway. Sarah followed her, pausing only briefly to shift and snarl at Nick. Jameson lingered, looking between Nick and Monroe.

“I’ll try to talk to them,” Jameson told Monroe.

Monroe snorted. “Has it worked yet?”

Jameson smiled slightly. “No. But there’s always a first time.” He looked at Nick, eyes flashing red briefly before he got himself under control. “I almost hope you are what you say.” Then he was gone, joining Louisa and Sarah in a car parked across the street.

Nick watched them drive away, then ventured, “So, uh-”

“Whatever it is, don’t say it,” Monroe warned.

Nick made a face at him. “I was going to suggest getting drinks. Lots of them. Somewhere else, since the ones I brought are plant food.”

Monroe grimaced, then nodded a concession. “Yeah, okay, that was worth saying. But you’re driving.”

Nick considered taking them to the pub near his house – one of his favorites, and one where he almost always had a tab going – but if they went somewhere, he’d have to drive home afterwards, which meant he’d have to limit himself. And it really wasn’t a two beer kind of night.

Monroe raised his eyebrows when they turned down Nick’s street. “Trying to get out of paying for the tab?”

“Figured we might want more than one beer and half an onion ring,” Nick teased as he pulled into the driveway.

“Cheapskate,” Monroe commented, unbuckling his seatbelt.

Nick grinned at him. “Maybe I just wanted to bring you back to my house and get you drunk.”

Monroe snorted. “Sorry, I’m not that cheap of a date. Or is that your new Grimm tactics, lure us in and take us out?”

“Damn. There went my plans for the night,” Nick said, climbing out of the car.

Monroe followed him out. “I’m just too clever for you.”

“Or so you think.” Nick led the way to the front door, letting them in and gesturing towards the living room. “I’ll get some drinks. Make yourself at home. No red, I promise.”

Nick headed into the kitchen to grab another six pack out of the fridge, and, after a moment’s consideration, a bottle of whisky. When he returned to the living room, he found Monroe sitting on the couch, flicking through channels. Nick set the alcohol down on the coffee table, handed Monroe a beer, snagged one for himself, and sprawled out on the couch next to him.

They kept to lighter topics, even as they broke into the bottle of whisky, until a few hours later, when Monroe looked around the room with a frown.

“Where’s your girlfriend?” he asked, as if he’d just now noticed she wasn’t home.

“Working,” Nick replied.

“On Thanksgiving?” Monroe asked.

Nick shrugged. “She always has. She’s a vet, they usually get emergencies today. Thanksgiving used to be me and Aunt Marie, anyway, but-” Nick cut off. He didn’t think he’d had enough alcohol to go there. “Juliette considered not doing it this year, but I told her it was fine.”

“That why you decided to come bug me?” Monroe questioned.

Nick quirked a slightly rueful smile. “I didn’t think you’d have your family over.”

“Trust me, I wasn’t planning on it, either,” Monroe grumbled.

“What were you going to do?” Nick asked, curious.

Monroe made a dismissive gesture – a slightly more wild one than usual, likely due to his alcohol consumption. “Work, probably. Same thing I do any other night.”

Nick frowned. “But it’s Thanksgiving.”

“Yeah, well, I told you, I’m pretty much a loner,” Monroe said.

Nick took a drink of whisky. “Not anymore.”

For a moment, it looked like Monroe wanted to say something. Then he shook his head, and asked, “How’d you end up with Thanksgiving off, anyway?”

“By accident,” Nick replied. “I’ve always taken it off when I could before. I volunteered to work this year, but turns out they didn’t need me.”

“What, no gruesome murders on Thanksgiving?” Monroe asked.

Nick chuckled. “Tonight’s usually the fire department’s area. You’d be amazed at how many people try to deep fry frozen turkeys. We’ll get called in tomorrow, after people’ve had to spend more than twenty-four hours with their in-laws.”

Monroe grinned, an expression more like a baring of teeth than a smile. “Know the feeling.”

Nick turned over the bottle of whisky in his hands, took a drink, and passed it on to Monroe. “So exactly how screwed are we?”

“On a scale of one to ten?” Monroe took a gulp of whisky. “Not completely boned. My family’s – complicated. They run the gamut from keeping as close to the old ways as possible without drawing attention to themselves, like my grandmother, to practicing Wieder Blutbaden, like my uncle. And everything in between. Pretty much the only thing they have in common is their hatred for Grimms.”

Nick grimaced. “That’s encouraging.”

Monroe shrugged. “Nothing for you to worry about. You know, more than you already had to worry about groups of people out there hating you.”

Nick snorted. “Thanks.”

“That’s what you get for being a Grimm,” Monroe replied unsympathetically. “Anyway, they’re not stupid. They won’t be hunting you down anytime soon. Me, on the other hand.” He scowled and drank some more whisky.

“Shit. Sorry?” Nick offered.

“Yeah, you better be,” Monroe commented.

“Would it help if you told them you were playing me?” Nick suggested. “Just getting in close to kill me, or manipulating me into taking out your enemies or something?”

Monroe stilled. “How do you know that’s not what I’m doing?”

Nick laughed.

Monroe just raised his eyebrows.

“That was actually a serious question?” Nick wrinkled his nose. “I told you already. I trust you.”

Monroe made a face. “Would you stop saying that? Every time you do, I feel myself losing a little bit more blutbad cred. I’m not the trustworthy type, okay?”

Nick rolled his eyes. “You want me to buy that, you should stop doing things that prove I can trust you. Like guarding my aunt, or watching a suspect for me.”

“Hey, I made you pay me for that,” Monroe protested.

“You made me give you money for drinks, I never actually paid you,” Nick pointed out.

“You paid for my drinks, same thing,” Monroe said sulkily.

Nick watched him for a moment. Except it must have been more than a moment – admittedly, time was a little soft and fuzzy right then – because Monroe frowned at him.

“What?” Monroe asked.

“I think it bothers you because you’re not used to having someone trust you,” Nick informed him. “You don’t know what to do with it, and you don’t really think you deserve it.”

Monroe shifted uncomfortably. “Thanks for that, Sigmund Freud.”

Nick ignored him. “But you do.”

“Do what?” Monroe asked.

“Deserve it,” Nick replied.

“All right, you’ve definitely had enough alcohol,” Monroe said.

“You’ve had more than me,” Nick protested. “Who was the one laughing at a Snickers commercial twenty minutes ago?”

“Shut up,” Monroe said. “You were laughing, too.”

“At you.” Nick grinned. “And you repeating ‘I’m only helping,’ in that high pitched voice a dozen times.”

“And I’m going to do that next time you call me to bug me into helping you,” Monroe told him. “Then you can explain why you suddenly started laughing to your partner.”

“I never call you in front of my partner,” Nick said.

Monroe raised an eyebrow. “Ashamed of me?”

Nick snorted. “Don’t want to share you. Hank finds out where I’ve been getting some of my leads lately, he’ll try to take you for yourself.”

“A bit possessive there. You sure you don’t have some blutbad in you?” Monroe asked.

“Isn’t this the part where you’re supposed to ask me if I’d like to?” Nick asked, completely deadpan.

Monroe stared at him for a moment, expression unreadable, then his eyes narrowed. “You are a really bad person. Even for a Grimm.”

Nick smirked, then shook his head. “Anyway, no. I’m just a cop. We’re always trying to poach sources from each other.”

“So your partner’d try to poach me?” Monroe asked, sounding amused. “Maybe I’d rather work with the cop who isn’t a Grimm.”

“You wouldn’t have nearly as much fun,” Nick said with a grin.

Monroe eyed him. “Fun? Is that what you think I’m having?”

“You know it’s true,” Nick replied. He hadn’t missed the way Monroe’s eyes had lit up outside the Blue Moon bar at the prospect of doing Grimm work.

“Hey, there’s the alcohol talking again,” Monroe said. “Which, great, means I’m definitely going to have to call a cab. Thanks.”

Nick made a dismissive gesture, that might’ve been the slightest bit flaily. “Just stay here. I’ve got a guest room.”

Monroe raised an eyebrow. “So you can go wandering around in red again? Looking for a little homicide with your morning coffee?”

“No different than any other day. Except, hey, this’ll be fresh, much better than some of the stages of decay I’ve said good morning to,” Nick commented.

Monroe snorted, but he looked almost amused. “Remind me not to try to out gallows humor a homicide detective.”

“Wise decision,” Nick agreed. “And here’s another one: more alcohol.”

“I’m starting to get suspicious about how often you bring me and/or pay for alcohol for me,” Monroe said, but he took another drink of the whisky before handing the bottle back to Nick.

Monroe didn’t end up calling a cab. He also didn’t end up using the guest room, because late in the night – long after Juliette’d called to say she had been planning on going out with some friends and offered to sleep at one of their houses, to make up for scaring Monroe off that morning – and after a lot more alcohol, Monroe fell asleep on the couch.

Nick attempted to cover him with a blanket, and was mostly successful. The blanket was on him, anyway, it counted. It meant that Nick only had enough energy left to sprawl over the couch under a blanket as well, but Nick didn’t see anything wrong with that.

Tomorrow might be another story, but for the moment, Nick was content.


Notes (2): For anyone who hasn't seen it, this is the Snickers commercial mentioned.

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