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30 October 2007 @ 08:30 am
Response and Responsibilities (Part Two)  
This is a short chapter so I expect I'll crank out the editing on part three today and have it posted by later afternoon.

Title: Response and Responsibilities, Part Two of Three
Fandom: Hot Fuzz
Character/s: NA/DB in a romance-y sort of way
Word Count: 6,500 (in three parts)
Rating: PG-13 (mostly for cussing)
Summary: Chick Flick romance! Unrequited love! Mistakes in judgment! Stupid Secrets! And…a baby girl!!!!


Response and Responsibilities, Part Two

Nicholas was going over scheduling with his assistant Susan when his desk phone rang. He looked and recognized Danny’s cell phone number on the LED readout. Surprise and worry battled him down and he picked up the receiver after four rings, right before it went to voice mail.

“Nicholas?”

“Danny. How are…what’s wrong?” It took a second for Nicholas to register the tone in Danny’s voice, and when he did, his first thought was that something happened to Little Irene. Susan looked up from her notes at the change in his manner.

“Nuthin’, ‘spose.”

“Danny? Is our little girl alright?” Nicholas pressed, ignoring Susan’s raised eyebrows.

“Oh yes, Nicholas, didn’ mean to make you worry. No she’s fine, over with her grandmum right now.”

“Really?” It was odd. Nicholas knew the child’s schedule as well as any doting uncle, and right now Little Irene would normally be at home with her mother.

“Yeah.” Danny sounded very down, not sad or upset just kind of dull. Nicholas waved Susan out and moved around to close the door behind her.

“It’s good to hear from you, Danny.” Nicholas said carefully, trying to keep the conversation neutral but open as he sat back down.

“Y’not been returning my calls.”

Nicholas held in a sigh. “Been very busy here, lately. I’m sorry.” He decided to keep it simple, no long winded excuses. Not as if the truth was an option, anyway: ‘sorry, realized that I’m madly in love with you and wish I was there so we could raise your daughter together like an old married couple. Thought it best not to call.’ No, not quite the suitable response.

“Hmmmph.” Danny grunted and was silent for a while.

“Danny, tell me what is bothering you.” Nicholas coaxed, but Danny remained quiet. “Is it Inspector Fielding? Is she…” He trailed off. He knew Fielding by reputation and knew she was a very by-the-book, honest officer and was probably a fantastic Inspector, especially since she grew up in Gloucester herself. Danny never complained about her before in the last year and half she was installed at Sandford, so any ideas down that road stalled in Nicholas’ brain.

“No, no; she’s a great Inspector, really. Hassles the Andes to death.”

Nicholas laughed at Danny’s definition of what a ‘great inspector’ does in Sandford.

“It’s Nan.”

Danny’s wife. He did not talk about her much and Nicholas knew that aside from Little Irene and a night of unprotected passion nearly three years ago, the two did not have much in common. Even now.

“What’s going on, Danny?”

“Well we been having fights, you know. I guess you do, when you’re married. Not that I remember mum and dad ever getting on like that…she wants me to quit the service.”

“You have got to be kidding.” Nicholas was in shock, knowing what his answer would be to any similar request.

“No. I told you ‘bout her father’s farm and all that. Well they all want to join the family business. I told her I ain’t a Reaper, you know, I don’t farm. I’m a police officer.”

“Of course you are, Danny. And you are good police office. The best partner I ever had.”

Danny was silent again for a bit. “Yeah, you too, Nicholas.”

“So what’s happening that Little Irene is with her grandmother?”

“Nancy moved back in with her folks.”

Nicholas sat back in his chair, stunned. He could not imagine how terrible this was for Danny, in a small village, married to one of the other oldest families there. This was probably causing fractures within the whole of Sandford society.

“Danny…you never said things were that bad.”

“I guess I never thought they were, Nicholas. I thought she knew that I would not quit the service. But…we just kept fightin’ about…a lot of stuff. Always makes the baby cry…” Danny sounded utterly devastated at that last, just torn apart. Then Nicholas heard him take a deep breath. “Now Nan says she fancies Tom Dyer.”

“Oh my god. Danny…” Nicholas did not have any idea what to say. Suddenly the door to his office opened and Susan looked in.

“Everything alright?” She looked worried and Nicholas realized that she was watching him through the windows to his office, and he probably looked as horrified as he felt.

He nodded vigorously and waved her out again, trying to compose himself.

“Who…who is Tom Dyer?”

“A farmer. Andy’s fourth cousin by his great aunt Imogene and that Irish bloke.”

None of that meant a damn thing to Nicholas. “Oh, right. Well…so how serious is it with them, then? I mean surely…Danny?”

“I don’t know, Nick.” Danny said it very quietly and with almost no emotion whatsoever, and it was the worst sound ever to cross Nicholas ears.

Nicholas swallowed. “Divorce?”

“Maybe.”

Part of Nicholas was launching off on an encouraging lecture about how this was the right thing to happen, that Danny and Nancy were not good for each other, that Danny was certainly making the correct choice by staying with the service and getting rid of this millstone around his neck. He said nothing, even as his brain immediately clicked on how he might get Danny transferred to London and then…he physically shook himself. He knew there was only one thing that Danny cared about right now, one person he would sacrifice anything for, and it was not Nicholas.

“Irene…”

He heard Danny give a small gasp and knew the man was fighting back tears. “She says…we’d share her, you know? Like visitation rights and all…I guess…my little girl…” Danny completely broke down and Nicholas was fighting back his own tears of anger and worry for his friend. He leaned forward over his desk to hide his face. In case anyone was looking.

They stayed on the phone for an hour, discussing the likelihood of a divorce – strong – and what Danny could do to cope, and how Danny could work visitation rights for Irene, which was nearly impossible for them to talk about because Danny could not make complete sentences when they did. Finally Nicholas did the only thing he really knew how to do.

“I’ll arrange with Fielding for you to take some time off. You’re coming up to London and staying with me for a week. Just to get away and clear your head, explore your options.” Nicholas said it in his best ‘inspector’ voice and it worked. Danny gave in without a fight, saying simply in the end, ‘Nan won’t like it.’

Fielding turned out to be a charming but fierce woman ‘of a certain age’ who brooked no nonsense. Nicholas really regretted not having the opportunity to work with her, as she sounded just like the kind of mentor he could respect. She had been an inspector for twelve years after fighting her way through the ranks the hard way and told him straight up that she intended to retire as one, in a small place like Sandford, with her wife Sherri.

“Excuse me?”

“Well we aren’t supposed to talk about that, are we? Somewhat against the regs, I know, Angel. But from what I understand you’re the open minded type. Hope to meet you someday; everyone here right worships the ground you walk on and keeps talking about getting you back. Mind you I’m not much threatened by that.” She gave him a full-throated, friendly laugh.

“Yes, well, of course I look forward to meeting you and…Sherri, at some point….”

“As for Danny, what a good officer. Does the service proud, that kind, doing everything by the book and keeping his uniform straight and filling out paperwork in a timely manner. A few of the…others…could take lessons from him. I know he’s in a bit of rough spot with his wife, you can really read that boy…er, him, like a book. And of course the whole village is in an uproar; you’d think it was Charles and Di all over again.”

“I have no doubts about that, Inspector.”

“I’ll clear his request for you. Good idea to get him out of the village for a few days, let him clear his head. Someone like you will…um…certainly help him deal with things.” She paused meaningfully and Nicholas wondered what the hell she was talking about. “Take care of him, Inspector Angel, and send my sergeant back to me in good shape, eh?” She said it in warm, professional tones and Nicholas realized that this respected and decorated officer truly, honestly valued Danny on her team. For some reason, that made Nicholas very proud.

>------
 
 
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the girl in the pj's!: hot fuzz | danny | aviatorsanesthezea on October 30th, 2007 03:24 pm (UTC)
Aww, you're breakin' my heart here! Now remember this is a heart that is normally devoid of breakage from chick flicks, but as always, you just manage to sneak in and give the old ticker a wollap! :)

I like the new Inspector and hope to meet Sherry soon!

Danny's going to stay with Nick for awhile! Yay! But why do I have the feeling that things are going to get even more complicated now? hehe

Poor little Irene, torn between her parents like that.

I'm looking forward to the next chapter! I just hope my heart can take it. :)