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24 May 2007 @ 07:32 pm
FIC: Vodafone  
Title: Vodafone
Author: starlastumbleine (starlasoma@livejournal.com)
Fandom: Hot Fuzz
Pairing: slight Nick/Danny, slight Nick/Janine.
Note: Far as I'm concerned this is a Janine-haters fic \o/
Rating: Positively tame R-ish.
Disclaimer: I don't own or make any money off of the fictional manipulation of the characters from Hot Fuzz. I am not profiting from this fic and don't intend any harm by it.
Summary: Nick and his control, continuing to part ways.
Thanks to toestastegood for the beta. Any mistakes which might be left are here as a result of my ignoring good advice.


Some time in the middle of the new station's construction, Angel's mobile gives off that tone that used to mean a message was waiting for him. He hears it when he runs home for a different jacket that evening. The cold is really supposed to gust in later and he just needs to stop by the cottage for a moment before heading out to the pub.
When he discovers where the sound is coming from, he's slightly startled.

The only signal he's ever had in town was at the very outskirts, near Mr. and Mrs. Edgecomb's pastures. And in the first five months here, the only voicemails waiting for him were the old messages from the Met, trying to get hold of him to negotiate his return. After deleting those, he'd kept the thing in the corner of his hotel room, off, since it was being completely useless. He'd plugged it back in upon moving into the cottage and kept it on, hoping that the crews sent over from civilization might be including some updated equipment into the construction of the new police station. Detaching himself from his mobile had been one of the stranger changes Sandford affected upon him.

The crews brought the Internet with them. New gear, fresh reams of paper with the most current updated forms preprinted, and blessed cell phone service.

Two messages. From Janine.

He hadn't heard from her since London, eight or nine months back. The timing struck him as fucking sad.

He really hadn't given a shit for her, had he? He never passed on his landline number at the hotel, and she hadn't sought it out. The Met had asked for him back after a few weeks and she hadn't seemed to care if he stayed gone. He had never called her, and she hadn't asked for him back.

And here were these messages.

He didn't listen to them, but watched the lines of text flash from the number to the name to the call time.

Two messages: a week back, a day back.

He sat down on the edge of his bed and thought about the first date.

Last Tuesday. Minor home invasion. Miss Lee hadn't asked to borrow a cup of sugar from Mrs. Wilcox. Mrs. Wilcox expected severe repercussions for the theft of baking ingredients. Miss Lee managed to bribe them with pastries. Rather, she managed to bribe Danny who managed to convince Angel to tell Mrs. Wilcox that the situation didn't warrant Police intervention and perhaps her jealousy of Miss Lee's baking prowess was showing just a bit much.

Tuesday the NWA's cameras had been re-commissioned for use in traffic enforcement. Tuesday was Andy's mum's birthday. He couldn't remember which Andy.

Yesterday he'd spent the most tedious hours of his damned life pointing out where computer equipment, CCTV monitors and radios should be hooked up in the new building. Yesterday all he did was sign forms, wait for contractors to arrive, roll his eyes repeatedly at the London electrician who looked confusedly at the cables he'd brought in on his own which hadn't been the appropriate ones (neither had the next set, nor the next). And not even through all that hideously boring administrative crap had he spared one thought for Janine. She thought of him Tuesday, he thought of her never. She wanted to speak to him yesterday; all he wanted to be was out on patrol.

He wondered when the last time was that he'd spared a thought on her at all.

So he sat and thought back and his shoulders sank as he remembered one instance and one instance only.

For the first time in a long time, he slipped his phone into his pocket and exited the house with it. He walked, so he had the time and the empty hands with which to check the messages, but didn't.

He should have checked them. But wouldn't.

The last time he'd really spared a thought on Janine, more than a simple reminder, actually a full moment, an entire trip down memory lane, was during his last all-out row with Danny.

And he walked now, remembering this, towards Danny's place and not the pub. If he hadn't left yet, Danny would just let him in. If not he could circle back around to the pub but he hoped he wouldn't have to. His hopes for spending a warm evening there, amongst the hum and chatter of the town newcomers and the laughter and stories of those who had become teammates and acquaintances and even friends, had diminished entirely.

Hearing back from her shouldn't have been such a depressing event – even if all she wanted was to ask how he was getting along, he didn't want to speak to her or so much as hear from her. Nick felt as if Janine would try and send some great, heavy cloud of approval his way. She would say these lovely and encouraging things about the work he’d been doing, about how she heard the move to Sandford had done him good, and he didn’t want to hear her fucking encouragement. He didn’t need her authorization to feel complete anymore.

It didn't make much sense, but he didn't want her to know how happy he was.
Figure that.

Terse lectures to and shouting at Danny were not common occurrences any longer, but when they did happen, they stung both parties. Danny seemed to make a titanic effort to try and avoid them and, for his part, Nick took pains to notice his uncharacteristic compliances and soundless agreements in what would otherwise be situations ignored “for the greater good.”

Nick's last moment with Janine's ghost had been in front of his own cottage. Danny let him out at his home, he'd slammed the car door and stomped up to the entrance. He caught himself just staring at the lock on the front door as the evening grew steadily dimmer, regretting every harsh thing he'd just said to Danny.

He stood there, listening back on his own words, comparing them to tens of similar fights he'd had with Janine on the subject of his own injuries and return to work.

This had been weeks back. Danny was more than ready to come to work again but something made Nick want to keep him indoors, hide him behind a desk, keep him safe at the temporary HQ, keep him off the street.

What he'd said--

Fuck. He'd said Danny would be endangering the lives of the citizens whom it was his responsibility to protect if he were to come back to the job too soon after his final surgeries to repair the damage the gun and the explosion had done to him.

He'd said it in the strictest terms. He'd said it out of uniform. He'd said it on the way home in response to searching inquiries from Danny on why he hadn't been on the upcoming weeks' schedules to patrol. He'd said it to make it clear he was the boss and he'd decide what Danny did and when.

He'd had similar conversations before, stretching the niceties so as not to seem insubordinate to his own superiors after each of his three in-the-line-of-duty injuries.

He'd come home to Janine's infuriating agreement with his superiors that he'd only be putting other people in danger.

But he was good, he'd insist.

But he was human, Janine would say, and then spout line after line of medical reasoning for why she agreed with the Met's policy.

He'd hated her then.

And here he'd just been her, out on the lane, in the car with Danny.

He was a fucking hypocrite.

By now he was facing Danny's door, remembering ambling into his own room that night, picking up the receiver next to his then-dead cell phone and apologizing insanely, ramblingly to Danny's machine. He'd left eight messages.

Danny had been in early the next day, before even Nick had clocked in for his shift. And hugged him. Off the clock. Because on the clock would have been inappropriate.

Nick didn't quite know how to return the gesture, but held back considerably from then on, reigning in his knee-jerk reaction to what might be considered lack of professionalism, rule breaking and whatnot. He made a conscious effort to calm down. He spent a lot more of his time being patient now than he ever had been before.

And he could tell that Danny wasn't at the pub yet. His television flickered through the gaps in the curtains and he answered the door cheerfully as ever, inviting Nick in, unaware that what Nick had now in his pocket, this nuisance little electronic device, was roiling his guts and weighing down his mind. The two pathetic messages, as yet silent but blinking icons clouding his usually sharp judgment.

And as Danny clicked shut the front door, Angel turned around and filled his arms with him in greeting and in thanks for being there at all. For listening to his eight messages those weeks back and forgiving him, doing what Nick was not willing to do for Janine.

When Nick pulled out of the hug awkwardly, Danny didn't say a word, but his brows shot up in question.

It was later, four or five beers deep, when Nick pulled out the phone and explained the situation now that he was a bit more at ease with it, now that he had Danny to filter it all through. The offending object sat on Danny's kitchen table, between them.

'Hit delete,' he offered.

But Angel still didn't know if he could.

So Danny picked up the phone and fiddled with the buttons, lifted the thing to his ear and from across the table came Janine's incomprehensible digital squawk. Nick couldn't understand a word from it or, to his surprise, gauge the message from her tone of voice. After both messages Danny chose the key for "delete."

'It weren't anything important.'

And Angel let out a breath he didn't know he was holding. Danny closed the phone and set it between them again.

Nick pushed it back across to ping gently against Danny's can of beer. He didn't know what to do except to wear that pathetic expression he probably had on when Danny had let him in the door.

Danny deleted Janine’s number, and turned off the phone.


movie fandoms FTW
Current Mood: accomplished
(Deleted comment)
Señorita Major English, Esquire: musicmajorenglishesq on May 25th, 2007 01:45 am (UTC)
five points \o/

and it's alright. glad you liked it. at least you're conscious - summer mode to me means excessive naps.
Nitesh: you hypnotized himnitesh_update on May 25th, 2007 12:26 am (UTC)
I really, totally loved that. You did a great job!
Señorita Major English, Esquire: 1 + 1 = 11majorenglishesq on May 25th, 2007 01:45 am (UTC)
thanks. i try.
The Girl With Kaleidoscope Eyes: You Met Me At A Strange Time In My Lifeeternalghost on May 25th, 2007 01:18 am (UTC)
You have no idea how happy your icon makes me!!! *Huge Fight Club Fan*

I am Angel's Colon. I get Cancer. I Kill Angel.
or even better...

I am Angel's Nipple.
Señorita Major English, Esquire: middle children of historymajorenglishesq on May 25th, 2007 01:48 am (UTC)
the scene in the shop after he takes Danny's car automatically reminded me of the Narrator's sallow, abused face in Fight Club. it couldn't be helped.
Pandonkey: Nick and Dannypandonkey on May 25th, 2007 01:22 am (UTC)
Oh, splendid! I really enjoyed this; it's a really intriguing look into Nick's head. His reasons for not wanting to listen to the message, specifically this --

She would say these lovely and encouraging things about the work he’d been doing, about how she heard the move to Sandford had done him good, and he didn’t want to hear her fucking encouragement. He didn’t need her authorization to feel complete anymore.

It didn't make much sense, but he didn't want her to know how happy he was.
Figure that.

-- They really rang true to me.
Señorita Major English, Esquire: housemajorenglishesq on May 25th, 2007 01:58 am (UTC)
you know that typical high school reunion bullshit where the old friends from past lives catch up with each other and the guy with the Jag and the hot wife is trying to say this encouraging stuff to the dude who's just made manager at the supermarket?

well. i can't fucking stand bumping into people i used to know and love because they're like Oh, you're an English Major. Oh and you're working at Target? Fabulous. meanwhile they're married with kids, a house and two cars, a job where they don't work weekends.

not that i envy them their brats (er - sorry, kid-hater) but i hate that fake Good For You! bullshit. it's not exactly what Nick's going through here, but i figure Janine would be the supportive-ex type.

fuck supportive exes.

D: i'm glad someone else understands this on some level, at least. i suppose that's what i mean.
macho slut in librarian drag: phoenix-beatle tattoonice_girls_play on May 27th, 2007 08:08 am (UTC)
well. i can't fucking stand bumping into people i used to know and love because they're like Oh, you're an English Major. Oh and you're working at Target? Fabulous. meanwhile they're married with kids, a house and two cars, a job where they don't work weekends.

Been there. *Am* there. I've graduated, got my bachelor's degree, am searching for a full-time job at a newspaper like mad. Meanwhile I work at Blockbuster and I'm single and openly queer and those things are all anybody ever brings up when they see me. "Oh! blah-blah-blah Well you always liked movies, didn't you? And girls.."

If I hadn't burned the bridges with every single one of my exes, they'd probably be saying the same thing.
prairiestar: Pegg and Frostprairiestar on May 25th, 2007 05:29 am (UTC)
really, really excellent. The off-the-clock hug is brilliant.
Señorita Major English, Esquire: love helpsmajorenglishesq on May 25th, 2007 09:26 pm (UTC)
thanks. hugs are always A+. especially unannounced pre-shift apology-accepted hugs.
Lady Day: (HF) Blue & Yellowday221b on February 27th, 2011 06:36 am (UTC)
I really enjoyed this. Well done!
Señorita Major English, Esquire: O HAY!majorenglishesq on February 27th, 2011 10:04 pm (UTC)
o hay! Thanks!