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Event Horizon

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“Copy that! On it right now.” Happy exclaimed through the comms, opening the metallic door.
“I’m coming too.” Toby said, standing up.
“No, your leg hurts.” She protested.
“It doesn't.” He lied.
Happy nodded.
“Okay. Grab that bag then, and follow me.” She ordered, pointing with her finger to a spot behind him.
Toby followed the direction, but he couldn't see anything.
“Which ba…”
A thud. He heard a metallic sound that interrupted his sentence and made him turn toward the door.
“Happy!” He screamed, as he walked to the door as best as he could.
He knocked a few times but nothing happened.
“Happy!” He screamed once again.
Toby faced the other direction and laid to the door. He placed a hand to his comm and took a breath.
“Happy.” He said quietly. “Don't you ever do that again. Ever.” He uttered with a tough tone.
“Sorry Doc.” He heard back. “Had to. You're injured. I can't put you in danger.” She justified herself.
“I don't care, Quinn.” Toby shoot back.
“Oh boy, he’s angry.” He heard whispering.
“Yes, Sylvester. I am.” He replied. “Happy! Come back here and open this bloody door!” He spoke.
“Happy!” He tried again, even if he knew that no one would come back.
The door opened a bunch of minutes later, and Happy took a step inside.
“Done!” She said, removing the bag from her shoulder.
“Comms out.” Only said Toby. He stood up from the chair he was sitting in and reached her. “Comms out.” He replied and she followed his instruction. Happy haven't seen him so angry in ages.
“What's, Doc?” She said.
“Don't you ever leave me behind while you go into dangerous tunnels again.” He exclaimed. “I don't care if I’m injured, or dying.” He tapped her shoulder.
“Keep calm, black knight in shiny armor. I know what I’m doing.” She replied, removing his hand.
“I know. But I don't know what I could do if something happens to you, and I don't want to discover it today.” Toby whispered, resting to the nearest desk.
“Do you ever think before talking? Or you just run your mouth?” Happy poured out in anger.
“What?” Toby was in disbelief, he was the one who was supposed to be angry.
“Yeah, keep thinking about yourself, Curtis.” She said. “Maybe I don't want to discover what I could do if something happens to you, and that's why I locked you safe since you're also injured and not able to run?” She rhetorically exclaimed. “Just think for a moment.”
“Happy.” He said.
“Don't ‘Happy’ me.” She interrupted. “I’m right, you're wrong. Now pack up because I want to leave this place.” She ended, giving him her back to reach the door.
“No. I ‘Happy’ you if I want to, because you can't decide alone. We're in this together, for God's sake!” He almost screamed.
“Oh boy, Toby!” She rolled her eyes and threw her arms in the air. She made a few steps to grab her bag, but he blocked her.
“You can't see my point.”
“Wrong. I do, but I don't give a shit. Because I did what was right to me to keep you safe and I’ll always do what’s right to me to keep you safe.” She uttered. “So, shut the front door and grab your bag.” She put her comm back in. “Ready for extraction in five.”
“Glad you're back, guys!”
“Not now O’Brien. One husband is enough to discuss with.”

-

“I was thinking…” Toby started.
“And that's not good.” Happy replied.
He wrinkled his nose, but she smiled.
“I may have an idea to recover the money for Cabe in a quick way, but you won't like it.” He said.
Happy removed her eyes from the road just a second, to give him a bad glance.
“Not a chance. You're not gonna gamble, Toby.” She replied.
“I didn't want to.” He specified. “I don't feel the rush anymore. I wanted to give my services to help the baddies win.” He explained. “I don't have their contacts, but I may know where to find someone.”
Silence fell in the car. Toby watched Happy, to capture every sign of what she was thinking.
“No.” She said after a few moments.
“I thought so.” Toby replied. “And maybe it isn't a safe idea either, they are probably checking out bank accounts and stuff. Dirty money is synonymous with problems.” He shrugged. “But, maybe... you should try.”

-

“So, we have to slow down the breath to mislead the security. We’ve done that before.” Walter explained as everyone was in front of the screen.
“Apparently, killing and bring back to life members of the team, is a very Scorpion thing.” Toby said ironically. “Who will be our sacrificial lamb?” He demanded.
“Our best option is Happy.” Walter said.
Toby scrunched his nose, then he turned to Happy behind him. “Welcome to the club, Love. You have the pleasure to become a zombie. For the sign-up, Sly’s your guy!”
“How we proceed?” Happy asked, ignoring her husband.
“Toby,” Walter started. “You need to bring Happy inside to wake her up, then, you have to leave quickly. Happy, you have around three minutes to change the channels of the cameras and connect ours. Then you can go up the ventilation pipes and place the four cameras there, as you go out.”
Happy nodded, followed by Toby.
“Sly and Cabe will be in the main room, to check the connection, while Paige and I will go to have a little chat with the doctor.”
Toby stood up and clapped his hand. “Let's kill another Scorpion!”

“Who are you?” Asked the skinny man at the check desk.
Toby tapped on his badge. “Daily replacement.”
“Whose absent?” The guard asked.
“Not a clue, mate. They just called me to bring this corpse down.” Toby replied.
He nodded, but he stood up to check Toby's badge and the corpse.
“Okay.” He said, opening the door. “You know how it works?”
“Affirmative.”
Toby pushed the gurney inside.
“I partially kill my wife every day just to bring her back to life.” He whispered to himself.
He pushed the button to open the door and slid inside. Once the door closed behind him, he quickly put out of his pocket the phial with the oils to wake her up. He opened her mouth and let a few drops fall in, then he lowered and kissed her.
“Wake up, Princess.” He whispered.
Happy opened her eyes.
“Hello.” She said.

-

“Toby.” Called Paige. “Toby!” She tried again, approaching his empty desk. “Oh, there you are.” She said when she found him sitting at the center table. “Toby.” She said, placing a hand on his shoulder.
Toby jumped in surprise.
“Paige!” He exclaimed. “You scared me.”
“You were absent.”
“That's why you scared me.” He pointed out.
“Are you okay?” Paige demanded, taking place just near him.
“Uhm.” He grumbled. “Just a little discussion with Happy. Nothing too serious.” He explained.
Paige nodded. “Now I understand why she slammed everything in the kitchen.”
Toby shrugged his shoulders and rolled into his hands a wrench.
“After all these years,” Toby started, throwing the tool in the air to catch it again in the fall. “Sometimes I still feel like she pushes away anyone who could possibly care about her.”
“I’m no shrink,” Paige said. “But even if she changed a lot since I first met her, she's still Happy.”
Toby smiled.
“At least, she doesn't shut you often as she used to do.” Paige added.
Toby laughed and threw again the wrench in the air, missing it this time. The tool fell on the floor and slid a few meters toward the kitchen.
“I shut everybody out.” Exclaimed Happy. She was standing behind them, a few centimeters by her tool. She lowered to grab it and took a few steps toward them. “Don't take it personally.” She said. “It's just easier.”
“It's also really lonely.” Paige added, lowering her voice.
Toby stole the wrench from her hands and stood up. “But she's not.”

-

Happy was caught in a conversation with Water when Toby slid in front of her.
He placed a hand on the back of her neck and without giving her the chance to counterattack, he kissed her.
Slowly, but vigorously.
Happy froze in the moment, but she let herself go and she closed her eyes.
She raised her hand and placed her palm to his abdomen, as he moved his hand from her neck, to her cheek. Then, as he came, he slid away.
Toby reached Ralph near Sly’s desk and raised his hand to give him a high five with a mischievous expression on his face.
“Happy?” Walter called, embarrassed by what happened.
Happy looked at Toby, with her hand still in the air.
“I can't even get mad.” She said incredulous by her own words. She lowered her arm and watched Walter.
“That was freaking good.”

-

Cabe said two thousand times to lock the main door, but after all those years, they didn't do that. That's why a little, old lady, followed by two guys, was standing in front of part of the team with a truly unpleasant face.
“I need Toby Curtis.” She said. “He works here, right?”
“Who's looking for him?” Happy shoot back, crossing her arms.
“Does he work here?” The woman repeated.
“I said. Who’s looking for him?” Happy demanded once again.
“Who are you? His mom?” She exclaimed with a laugh.
Happy took a step ahead. “His wife.” She said firmly. “Now, who are you and what do you want from my husband?”
The old lady smiled and looked at Happy from head to toe.
“I like you.” She said. “You're a tough one.” She took a step towards Happy and prolonged her hand. “Rhonda Thomas. I need Curtis’ help.”

“Okay. Let's check everything once again.” Toby exclaimed as Happy was connecting the hidden microphone. “Objective’s Richard. No improvised actions. Just observe and analyze to discover how he’s cheating...”
“Keep the focus on the guy and ignore a certain Phillip if he tries to introduce himself.” Happy finished with a nod.
“Hey.” Toby said, placing his hand on hers and blocking her actions for a moment. “You know I would have gone, but…”
“Even if you're out of the game, they know who you are?” She retorted. “Yeah, you said that nine or ten times.” She exclaimed.
“I don't like the situation. I know those places, they're not easy.” Toby replied with a serious tone.
“You weren't either, yet.”
“I’m serious, Happy.” He squeezed her hands. “I can be your eyes and mind, but you'll be physically on your own.”
“If you survived all those years, I can do that.” Happy finished, without irony in her voice.
Toby nodded, but when she came back to work on the cameras, he called her once again. “Hap.”
She raised her eyes. “I’ll be careful.”

“Are you sure, Doc?” Happy whispered.
“Like the day I say I do.” Toby confirmed.
“Tell me when you have his eyes in sight.” Happy spoke.
“Sly, zoom in. Hap, right. And..” He said prolonging the sound of the a. “When.”
“Miss, your turn.” The croupier announced.
“Just mime one.” Toby ordered.
Happy raised a finger in front of her face and the croupier gave her a card.
She took it and she showed it to Toby from her glasses.
“Lovebird, you have just won everything!” Toby uttered.
Happy turned all her cards on the table, provoking sounds of disappointment from the other gamers, their suspect included.
She felt a rush of adrenaline, the same she used to feel when she ran her bike.
“It's like winning a rare piece’s online auction with a good price!” She said.
Toby stopped and placed a hand on his comm.
“Wait.” He said. “You're not gonna start to gamble, don't you?” He asked.
“Of course not, Dummy.” She whispered back.
“Just checking.”

-

She thought it was insane. Lovely, but insane.
She had watched him doing that for years.
Every case, every holiday, every event.
Everything recorded in that big red book she was holding right then, right in front of his stupid dummy face she loved too much.
She took a deep breath, then she took a step forward.
“I’m your wife, Dumbass!”
“I’m sorry?” He demanded.
Happy raised her left hand and showed her ring, moving her fingers.
“Oh! That’s a lovely ring, Mrs. Clever! Are you an engineer?” Toby demanded with a smile.
Happy frowned as she tried to find the right sentence to say.
“Okay, the direct approach still doesn't work.” She whispered, more to herself than to him. She took a breath. “Listen to me, Toby.” She started. “It's quite late. You don't remember any of us, but we know you and you have to deal with it.” Happy spoke. “There is no one, except us and please, come back inside because it's freaking cold out here.”
Happy found him in the parking lot of the hospital, she just arrived to bring him their book when she spotted his familiar hat. As he did the previous afternoon, he asked her who she was and Happy replied the same way. The doctor told her to be patient, Toby only needed two days to recover his whole memory, but she was starting to freak out, and not only because they were freezing outside in the night.
“I’m looking for something, or someone.” Toby replied. “I don't remember.”
“Why don't we wait inside?” She proposed, as she hugged more the book.
“We?” He demanded. “Do I know you?”
“Oh boy!” Happy exclaimed rolling her eyes. “This is exhausting!” She uttered.
Without waiting for a reply, she grabbed Toby’s hand and she dragged him inside. He tried to protest, but she ignored him until they arrived in the room he was occupying.
Once inside, she pushed him back and he fell to the bed.
Surprised, he smiled with a mischievous look. “Oh, you like control.” He said.
“As if this is new.” She replied.
Happy gave him her back just to grab a chair to sit. She threw the red book on his legs and Toby began to switch his gaze between the two of them.
“What is this?” He demanded.
“It's a book.” She simply said. “But it's not magical. It won't open by itself.” She exclaimed, crossing her arms and aiming at the cover.
Toby grabbed the first page and turned it.
“Quintis.” He read out loud. “What's a Quintis?” He asked, looking at Happy. She scrolled her shoulders and pointed to the book, sign that he needed to go on.
Toby followed her instruction and changed the page.
He looked at the photo glued to it and wide opened his eyes.
“Wait! Are we married?”

-

“You will end up in jail. Again!” Toby screamed, trying to outclass the noise of that old equipment.
“Said the man who has been arrested four times and even more in the last three years.” Happy replied, crossing her arms.
“To help other people and friends. And you’ve been arrested with me in half of those occasions, so.” He said, lowering his voice as the noise did the same.
“Clearly mistakes.” Happy replied. She grabbed her wrench and tightened two nuts.
“One of those was caused by your mouth, Darling.” He provoked. “And not the occasion I wanted to.”
“Perv!” She uttered.
“Guys!” Cried out Sylvester.

-

“You should have told me!” Happy exclaimed. “I could have prepared me better by studying some of the mechanics!” She finished, pointing to the big wheel behind her.
“It’s not a surprise if I tell you where we’re going!” Toby replied. “And you don’t need to study, Love. You have everything you need in that beautiful head of yours.” He said, rounding her shoulders and leaving a kiss to her temple.
“Your friend owes me one!” She said, turning to face the Ferris wheel she had to fix. “Repeat what's the deal.” She asked, starting to walk. “I can't believe you really brought me to an abandoned luna park by night.” She exclaimed then.
“It's just closed, Hap.” Toby corrected her. “And Ian is a friend.” He added. “You're the only one who can find the problem.”
Happy turned to face Toby, she snorted and came back to him to grab her backpack he was holding.             
“Plus,” Toby added when she gave him her back. “For a mechanical genius…” He started to walk to follow her. “What's better than a date to a luna park to play a bit with gears, nuts and screws?”

-

She lowered her head just for a moment to find the strength to appear strong in front of the others.
But he had learned how to read her.
Cabe placed a hand on Happy’s shoulder.
“Don't worry, Kid. We know where he is.”
Happy rose her gaze to look at him.
“Bring him back to me.”
Cabe nodded.

-

Happy sat on the couch and crossed her legs. She briefly looked at the two boxes labeled San José, California.
“Do you think we can do that?” She demanded to Toby, who was reading a book on the armchair.
He raised his head and stared at her.
“Sending the boxes tomorrow? I’ll go before work.” He replied. “Your dress will be there before the bride, I promise.”
“I mean…” She aimed at the house, then she swung her head between Toby and her.
“Oh.” Toby exclaimed, catching her point. “You mean, getting married and have a lovely, happy and difficult life?” He said in a sentence that sounded as question.
Happy nodded. “We didn't have great examples of happy family.”
“Or married life to emulate…” He added, closing the book and leaving it on the armrest. “But…” He stated. “We can do better.”

-

Happy sneezed for the fourth time in an arc of three minutes.
She grumbled, leaving her tools to grab a Kleenex. “Happy, why don't you go home?” Sylvester tried to propose, cleaning the air with the fear of the germs.
“No.” She replied, emitting a muffled sound. “I’m okay, it's just a cold.”
“Seems more like temperature, Hap.” Intervened Toby. He won a bad glance. “Your eyes are shiny and your cheek red.” He said anyway. “If you catch it in time, you can quickly kill it.” He suggested.
“I hate you.” Happy exclaimed, blowing her nose once again. “It's your fault.” She said.
“Why?” Demanded Sly.
“He was sick last week.” Happy pointed out.
“Yeah, but he didn't show up at the garage.” Sly remembered.
Happy froze for a moment, then she sneezed again.
“She stole my coffee the day before.” Toby intervened, reaching her to give her, her jacket. “We probably drank from the same spot.”
“Gross.” Exclaimed Sylvester with disgust.
“Before we made out.” Toby whispered then into her ear.

-

“Why is Happy so… happy?” Ralph asked her mom. Paige shook her head.
“I have no idea.” She said.
Happy was cleaning the shelf behind Toby’s desk, where she kept some nuts and back up tools, and she was mumbling a song.
Paige has never heard Happy sing, or mumbling a song. She looked around, no one was in sight except Happy.
“Good morning!” Exclaimed Paige, walking to her desk.
Happy immediately stopped to sing and turned to them.
“Hey.” She said with her usual tone. “Ralph!” She added when she saw him, making a gesture with her head.
“What were you singing?” Ralph asked, toddling toward her.
“Nothing. I wasn't.” Happy replied dismissively.
“Yeah, you were.” Paige intervened.
“No.” Happy said, leaving the rag on the shelf and starting to walk to her workbench.
Ralph looked at Paige and she patted his back, aiming at the kitchen. “Let's go to eat something.” She said.
“Someone said eat?” Demanded Toby entering the garage at that moment. “Good morning, fellas!” He exclaimed. “Ladies.” He added when he saw Paige and Happy. “Where are the others?” He asked, leaving his bag on the couch, and removing his jacket.
“I don't know.” Paige replied. “Only Happy was here when we arrived.”
“And when I arrived,” Happy intervened. “There was no one.”
Toby walked to his desk and left the jacket on the back of his chair.
“Wonderful!” He exclaimed, sitting down and placing his feet on the desk. “Relax!” He uttered.
He brought his hands behind his head and he closed his eyes, starting to sing the song Happy was mumbling before.
“What are you singing?” Ralph tried again.
Toby opened his eyes and looked at the boy. “I don't know the title, I have this song stuck in my head since yesterday. It's the last one I heard before going to bed.” Toby explained.
“Happy.” Ralph called. “ Do you know the title?”
“Why should she know?” Toby asked.
“She was mumbling this song too before.”

-

He tried to read, but he was so tired.
Curled on the couch with his head on the big cushion, Toby couldn't keep his eyes open.
He turned off the television and threw a blanket over his face, to shield himself from the light.
“Haaaappy.” He mumbled. “Turn off the lights, please.” He begged.
“Did you say something?” Happy demanded, popping out from their room.
Toby raised an arm and pointed to the ceiling.
Happy tapped on the wall and switched off the bulbs.
“Love you.” Toby whispered.
“Toby,” she called then. She exited the room and reached the couch. She patted his legs to make him move a little, so that she could sit.
“Why don't you go to bed?” Happy asked.
He mumbled something she couldn't understand.
“What?” She exclaimed.
He removed the blanket from his face. “I can't.” He said. “Christmas’ spirit took my strength.”
Like every year, Paige obligated them to decorate the garage, but if usually, everyone was involved, this time only Happy and Toby sacrificed themselves. Since Walter, Cabe and Sly were occupied with a case, the Quintis couple did all the unboxing, decoration and lights process. Under Paige’s direction and Ralph’s comments.
“Speaking of.” Said Happy. “You still have to tell me what do you want for Christmas, Doc.”
“Surprise me.” He replied.
“Oh, no.” She said, patting his back. “That's your field. I want a pure materialistic thing I can easily buy to make you happy.” She explained.
“I don't know, Hap.” Toby replied, putting himself up in a sitting position. “I don't think I need something.”
“What if, we skip the presents this year?” She proposed.
Toby gained a shocked expression. “No way, Quinn! I want you unwrapping a gift.” He exclaimed. “It's a nice thing to have a box under the tree with your name on a label.”
“So, let's avoid big stuff.” Happy said. “We can buy little things, even a keychain. Just for the unwrapping thing, and we can put in a jar, the amount we intend to spend.” She explained. “We can use that money for us, or the kids, or the house!”
“Happy.” Toby said. “Why did you come out with this great idea after ten years?”
“Because I run out of gift ideas this year.”

-

“Quinn! Curtis!” Paige uttered. “Where do you think you're going?”
Happy stopped, a hand on the door’s handle, the other one with her truck’s key in it. She turned to Toby, just a few steps behind her.
Paige raised a paper in front of her face.
“Groceries.” She simply said.
“Oh, no.” Toby exclaimed. “I’m bloody tired.”
“We all are.” Paige replied.
“Can I go tomorrow?” He demanded, but Paige shook her head in denial.
“Okay. I’ll go next week. Hap, this one is yours!” He put his hat on and surpassed Happy to go home as quick as possible.
“Hell no, Doc.” Happy replied. She grabbed him by the back of his jacket and dragged him behind her. “I’m tired too.”
Paige left the list on her desk. “I don't care who will go. If you’ll go together, or if you challenge each other.” She exclaimed. “Groceries. Done. Tonight.” She ordered, and she started to walk to the back door, to take her car and go home.
“Okay.” Toby spoke. He turned to Happy and opened his arms. “Together?” He proposed.
Happy shook her head and crossed her arms.
“I have a better idea.”

“Happy!” Toby called. “Can I open my eyes?” He asked, but he didn't receive answers.
He cheated, by peeking and he saw a note with a bag on his desk.
He grabbed the little paper and opened the zip.
His face lit up and he smiled at the contents, that he gifted her for her birthday just the year before Paige arrived.
He unfolded the little note and laughed.
“I’m hiding in the garage with a laser gun. Here's the other one. The loser will buy groceries. Good luck.”

-

“Cabe! Can you please tell her I’m right?” Toby exclaimed, entering into the kitchen.
“I’m afraid not, Doc.” Cabe replied, giving a bite to a banana. “But if you explain, it's still a not, but aware of.”
“My daughter won't have boyfriends until her thirties.” Toby exclaimed. He crossed his arms and rested his back to the sink.
“Don't you think it's a bit early, Doc?” Cabe demanded. “I don't think you can control, predict it or force her.”
“Toby!” They heard screaming.
“Oh, boy.” Toby exclaimed.
Happy entered with an angry expression on her face. “Why is your daughter crying?” She said, holding the baby into her arms.
“I want a boyfriend!” The girl cried out.
“See?” Toby said, pointing to the girl. “It's never too early, Cabe!” He uncrossed his arms and took a few steps to reach Happy and take the kid into his arms.
“She's six, Doc.” Cabe pointed out.
“Prevention is better than cure!” Toby replied, starting to move around to calm the baby.
“I want a boyfriend!” The girl cried out again.
“Monkey,” Toby started. “You're too little to have a boyfriend. Why don't you wait a few decades?”
“No! I want it now!” She sighed.
Toby rolled his eyes. She was stubborn, it took her just a few years with them to grab like a sponge Happy’s strong attitude.
“Isn't daddy enough?” He tried, then.
“You are mommy's.” She simply explained.
Toby stopped and looked at her, then at Happy.
“Sweetie, what do you mean?” He demanded.
“I want you for me because I want to be happy like you.” She explained, lowering her eyes.
“Aren't you happy with us?” Happy asked, taking a few steps toward them. Building a relationship with the girl has been so easy for them. They found the right way to communicate, and not even once they could feel, or imagine, that the girl wasn't happy.
She nodded vigorously. “I’m super super happy!” She exclaimed, throwing her arms to the air. “But I want daddy for me, because the other dad didn't want me, he only cared about the mom.”
Toby looked at Happy, then he fixed his gaze to the little one.
“Listen to me, Honeybee.” He started, gaining her full attention. “We are not like the other dad and mom. If I’m mommy's, as you said, it doesn't mean I can't be yours. We are yours, both. We love you, Honey. More than anything else. I, we will always be yours, if you let yourself be ours.” He said, smiling at her.
“I love you, like I love mommy.” He stated, then he moved closed to her ear. “To be honest, I love you a bit more, but don't tell mom.” He whispered, bringing his finger in front of his mouth. The girl did the same and giggled.
“I’m sorry if I upset you.” She apologized.
“You didn't, Sweetpie.” Toby gave her a kiss on the temple. “I just love you so much that I don't want to share you with another boy, not now that you're six and I’m supposed to be your one and only.”
“You are, daddy.” She said, hugging him and resting her head to his shoulder.
“When I’m older, I want my boyfriend to have a hat, like you.” She said then.
Happy laughed, followed by Cabe, and Toby scrunched his nose.
“In twenty-four years, Love.”

-

“You have the keys!” Happy screamed when she heard for the second time in a row, the familiar sound of Toby ringing the door.
She was totally hidden behind the box with papers and documents, just near the big column of ‘I don't remember what's inside’ boxes.
Toby volunteered to go out to buy something for dinner and she was glad, because she was totally covered in dust, and she didn't want to go out with the rain.
Happy heard the door close with a thud.
“Hap!” Toby called.
She popped out from behind the box and screamed back.
He followed her voice and found her in their second room.
“I thought you were still on the kitchen boxes.” He said.
“I was tired of ladles and dishes.” She replied.
Toby entered. “Got chicken and potatoes. Sounds good?” He asked, raising a bag.
“Good!” She replied.
“Great! I go to put it in the oven.” Toby informed and Happy nodded. “It's already cooked, but I want to reheat it a bit.”
“Call me when it's ready!” Happy exclaimed, as Toby started to walk toward the kitchen.
Happy grabbed another file's holder and opened it to check what was inside.
“Oh, Happy?” She heard. “What?” She replied.
“Have you found the coffee mugs?” Toby demanded, peeked out with a weird funny coloured apron.
“Nope.” Happy replied, without raising her head.
“Oh, good.” He exclaimed.
Happy looked at him. “No, not goo…” But she stopped herself when she focused on his outfit.
“What the hell are you wearing?” She asked.
Toby aimed at his apron.
“My apron.” He said with obviousness.
“We don't have one!” Happy exclaimed.
“Now we do!” Toby shot back.
“Oh, grow up, Doc!” She uttered.
Toby wide opened his eyes and ran to the kitchen.
“Don't you want to know why I asked you about the mugs?” He screamed from the other room.
“No.” She replied.
Toby popped up once again in her sight of view.
“I'm glad you are curious.” He said ironically. “Ta-da!” He exclaimed, showing her a little box.
“C'mon. Take it!”
Happy stood up and took a few steps towards him, she grabbed the box and removed the scotch. She opened it and she pulled out a little coffee mug and a little spoon with an elegant print on it.
“Is this one of the Disney's dwarves?” She asked, grabbing the other mug too.
“Not just one,” he specified. “Our dwarves.”
“Read.” He invited her.
Happy turned the mug and focused on what was near the print.
“Happy.” She read out loud. “And Doc.”
She looked at Toby and laughed.
“They were screaming our names. Literally.” Toby explained. “Now we have our new personal lovely mugs to take a hot coffee every morning, in our new old lovely house.”
The oven's timer rang and Toby ran to the kitchen.
“Doc,” she called him back. “Don't grow up too much!”

-

Happy knocked at the door, she could clearly hear Sylvester's voice talking about something nerdy.
“Yeah?” She heard back. She opened the door and stepped in.
“Happy!” Exclaimed Toby with a gruff voice.
“I'll go check with Mark and Walt.” Said Sly, dismissing himself and leaving the room, closing the door behind him.
“You are staring, Quinn.” Toby noticed. “I know I'm handsome, but I'm sure I'm pretty ghostly right now.”
Happy took a step forward.
“It's weird to see you pretty good, after…”
“Geez, Hap. Thank you.” Toby laughed ironically.
“Oh boy, Curtis. I mean…”
“I know what you mean.” Toby interrupted her.
Happy lowered her head and stared at the dusty floor, while silence fell in the room.
“You bought me flowers.” Toby said to restart the conversation, aiming at the little plant in Happy's hands.
She rose up her gaze.
“I heard you were opening a flower store, so I thought I’d pitch in.” She exclaimed, making him laugh, and cough right after. She instinctively took a step toward him but Toby's coughing calmed.
“It's really nice. Thanks.” He replied and drank some water. Happy placed the plant on the little table near his bed and sat on the chair that was occupied by Sly before.
“It resembles you.” Toby noticed, looking at the plant.
“Because it's small and chubby? That's not really nice to say, Dummy.” Happy said.
Toby smiled. “Because it's a cactus, full of thorns.” He pointed out.
Happy looked away and the silence fell once again between them.
Toby took another sip of water and shifted his position, scrunching his nose due to the pain.
“Was that your first bullet?” Happy demanded.
“Yeah, I'm not a huge fan of physical pain,” he replied. “So I try to avoid people with guns, knife or shotgunknives.”
“You just invented the last one.” She pointed out.
“It can be a thing, Happy. Do not underestimate technologies.” He scolded her.
She raised her hands, sign that she, among everyone, was the last person who could ever underestimate tech and science.
Toby sighed. “I can't believe I haven't been shot during a super spy mission.” He exclaimed then. “Like those tough guys.”
“We don't get called in lots of spy mission.” She pointed out.
“As long as we keep installing internet devices and minor stuff, my dream won’t come true.”
“You can always say that you got shot during a robbery.” Happy proposed. “Sounds tough.”
“Yeah, a robbery in a mini market and the bullet flew by mistake because the thief sneezed.” Toby rolled his eyes annoyed and Happy chuckled.
“But you've been fast enough to shield Sly.” She noticed. “That's tough.”
“Yeah, yeah. I like this version.” He nodded. “I saved his life, somehow.”
“You did.” She confirmed.
“Have you heard little cactus?” He demanded, talking to the plant. “I saved Sylvester's life.”

-

Patrick knocked at the garage’s door that opened by itself with just a touch.
“Dad! What are you doing here?” Exclaimed Happy, leaving her tools and directing toward him to welcome him.
“You told me you were going to work today and since you have my genes, you probably won't stop to eat, so.” He raised a bag he was carrying. “I brought you all something to eat. It's new year, after all. And I wanted to reciprocate all the lunches and dinners between Christmas Eve and yesterday.”
“You didn't have to, but thanks.” She said, giving him a hug. She grabbed a box and left it on the center table.
“I thought you told me you had a case, are you alone?” He demanded, looking around and noticing that she was the only one there at the moment.
“There’s also…” She tried to say.
“Miss Quinn, the lunch is ready.” But Toby interrupted her by making his entrance in the room. “Oh. Patrick. Hello!” He exclaimed as soon as he saw him. “Happy new year!”
“Tobias! Happy new year to you too.” Patrick wished back with a smile.
“I didn't know you were coming for lunch. I add a seat!” Toby exclaimed with a spoon in his hands.
“Oh, no. Don't want to disturb you, guys. I just brought something to eat.” Patrick repeated, shocking his head.
“Woah, food for an army! I love it.” Toby uttered, clapping his hand with the back of the spoon.
“Where is everyone?” Patrick asked once again.
“Paige's at home with Ralph and her cousin.” Happy informed.
“Cabe somewhere with some old army friend.” Toby added.
“Walter's at the hospital with his sister, and Sly.” She said then.
“And since we have a lot of food, why don't you stay?” Toby raised his eyebrows at happy.
“Really guys, I have to…” Patrick tried to say, but Toby blocked him.
“I insist. Happy?” Toby aimed at her.
“Doc's right, dad. We have a lot of food and even if Toby is a bottomless pit, we can't eat all by ourselves.”
“Well, all right, then.” Patrick smiled. He removed his jacket and placed it on the little stool.
“Give them to me,” Happy said, grabbing the boxes. “I'll bring those over there and add a dish.” She left them behind and started to walk to the kitchen.
“I've used the good ones, the box is still in the camper.” Toby screamed after her.
Happy only raised her hand, sign that she got it.
“So, why are you here if everyone's with their loved ones?” Patrick hazarded to ask.
“Oh, I don't have loved ones. So, when Happy proposed me to head here to work, I thought it was a nice idea. Better than home alone.”
Patrick nodded. He touched his nose with his hand. “There is something between…” Then he pointed to the kitchen and to Toby right after.
Toby wide opened his eyes and shocked his head. “Oh, no, no. We're just friends.”
“Ah, sorry. I didn't mean to.”
“No worries.” Toby smiled.
“It's just that since today is holiday and is the first day of the year, and you came to work after she asked you, I thought that maybe. But I was wrong, my bad.”
“Really, Patrick. No problem.” Toby reassured him once again.
“Toby!” Happy screamed. “I think you need to come here.”
“What's on?” He asked, raising his eyebrows.
“The oven. Not good.” She only said.
“Oh boy, my Lasagna!” Toby uttered. “Excusez moi!” He told Patrick, then he ran to the kitchen.
“What? It's not my fault.” Patrick heard scream. “You know I reheat, I'm not a chef.”
“We can save it. Stay strong, Lasagnetta. Resist for me.”
“Do you need help?” Patrick demanded.
“Yes!”
“No!”
Patrick laughed. Romantic or not, they were such a great pair together.

-

Happy grabbed the little blue fairy plush from Toby’s night table, she started to look at it while playing with her little wand.
“Don't think about it.” Toby said, sitting on the bed.
“Easy to say.” She replied.
Toby lay down and fixed his gaze to the ceiling.
“I don't want to think about it, you should do the same.” He exclaimed.
“It's been four days, Doc. I don't think we can fix this.” Happy sat and stared at him.
Toby opened his mouth, but he closed it right after, incapable of saying something.
“We will.” He said. “We have to, and if not, we'll find something else.” Toby tried to comfort her, but he wasn't sure about his words either.
“Why aren't you promising, as you always do?”
“Because I'm scared as hell.” He confessed.
“I don't know how we can manage this. It's not like people are waiting for us. Maybe they don't even need our fields.” She confessed. “I don't think it will be easy, even if we are freaking geniuses.”
“At least you know a job.” He expressed.
Happy looked at him with a puzzled expression.
“You are handy, Happy. Engineer, mechanic, half-hacker…” Toby explained. “I don't have so many opportunities. I'm brain, you're hand.”
“That's not true, Doc. You're affable, confident, funny. People like you.” She shot back.
Toby scrunched his nose.
“I don't have an extroverted personality. I appear cantankerous and tricky. And it's not a good point if you present yourself for a team job.” Happy ended.
Toby sighed and she followed him.
“I have to upload my CV.” He said, to light up the mood.
“I don't even know where my CV is.” She replied, rolling to her side. “I don't even know if I have a CV anymore.”
“I think I saw a CD with it.” Toby shifted position, so he could face her.
“Where?” She demanded in disbelief.
“In the bookshelf. There are two folders with some documents. I was looking for my thesis a few months ago and I remember I opened your folder by mistake.” Toby explained. “There was a CD with your CV, and a few certificates, I think.”
“I don't remember this folder, are you sure?”
“Yeah, the blue one. Wait.” He stood up and quickly walked toward the living room.
Happy sat and crossed her legs, leaving the plush on Toby's pillow.
He came back after a few minutes with a blue folder in his hands. He sat and placed it between them. Happy opened it and put out papers and files, CD included.
“Told ya!” Toby exclaimed. He tapped on his temple, proud of his memory.
Happy grabbed the CD and looked at it.
“I don't remember this at all. I hope it's a decent file.” She thought out loud.
“My old laptop support CD, we can try to read it tomorrow, or we can use the gara…” But he stopped himself.
Happy looked down and started to grab the papers to place them back in the folder.
“We'll find a solution.” Toby said, but she was pretty sure that he wasn't talking only about the file.
He started to help her, taking the papers one by one to place them in order. Curious as he was, he also read all the headers, and one among the others, caught his attention.
“Lovebug,” he called her. “Why do you have a list about ‘Shrink's advice’?”
Happy looked at him, then she wide opened her eyes. “Give that to me.” She said with maybe too much vehemence that Toby did exactly the opposite. He stretched to the other direction to avoid her.
“Smile more.” He read out loud.
Happy gave up and came back to her previous sitting position.
“Share with the team.” Toby read after. “Wait.” He exclaimed. “Those are advice I gave to you during the years. I'm the shrink!”
“Good morning, Doc.” She shot back.
“You wrote them…” He pointed out with a smile. He turned the page and read another one. “Don’t judge before knowing.”
Toby giggled. “Like you did with me, multiple times.”
He turned the page to the first one. “You wrote them all. Even after Paige.”
“I wanted to complete the collection.” She said ironically. “Now, can we put everything back?”
“No, no. I want to read the last one.”
Toby turned the pages until the last sentence, written in blue.
“I can trust him.” He read. His eyes were glistening when he looked up to meet her gaze.
“This is lovely, Hap. Not so you, but lovely.”
“This was stupid.”
“Stupid things, can be very beautiful. Like us.”