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04 January 2011 @ 01:28 pm
Covert Affairs Fic: August and After  
Written for yuletide 2010
Crossposted to covertaffairstv

Title: August and After
Pairing/Characters: Arthur/Joan, Auggie, Jai
Rating: PG13
Spoilers: Pilot
Summary: Joan tries to smoothe Auggie's return to work after his recovery, but Auggie handles himself just fine
Notes/Warnings: Read the disclaimer on my LJ

Other comments are housed at Yuletide/AO3.

Joan stood, surveying the newly redesigned tech ops room for DPD - newly redesigned out of her budget to accommodate one particular employee.

She sensed more than heard her husband's approach, saying nothing as he stood beside her, surveying the gleaming tech room. The silence between them held the tension of anticipation; there were so many comments Arthur could make about the situation.

"How's he doing?"

"He's doing just fine," she answered. "And he hasn't been gone that long that you've forgotten his name, has he?" With an arch of her eyebrow, she turned to confront her husband.

"August Anderson AKA Auggie," Arthur turned to her and recited from memory. "Asset specialties: hand to hand combat expert, weapons certifications on just about anything that fires, top level hacking skills and - if I might add - a scarily thorough knowledge of the CIA and it's inner workings." He turned back to look at Auggie, sitting at his new workstation, outfitted with special technology now that he was blind. "He should never have gone to Iraq. If he'd been captured..."

"He'd have gone to his grave reciting his name, rank and serial number," Joan finished for him. Her voice softened. "But I agree. I wish he'd never gone."

Arthur's tone quieted as well. "I know it took a big bite out of your budget to redo the tech ops equipment for him..."

"We work for the government, Arthur," Joan said with a sigh. "It would be hypocritical of us to ignore the Americans with Disabilities Act. I got what we needed for our asset to remain an asset." Letting go of some of the rigid posture she normally maintained at work, she turned to her husband, looking him in the eye. "He wanted to work. It's important to him that he's still useful to his country. I couldn't turn my back on him."

Arthur nodded. "I admire that. And I agree. Auggie's an asset worth preserving." He offered her a little smile. "I just happened to find some extra funds in my budget so I'm sending them your way to help make up the costs."

Joan finally allowed herself a smile. "I don't need your help running my department."

"I know you don't." His hand surreptitiously grazed hers in a tiny caress. "But I enjoy watching you work your magic with what you're given." He cocked his head at her. "I was thinking of having dinner tonight at Chez Renard."

"Oh." Joan turned her gaze back to watching Auggie. "Will you be home late then?"

Arthur's fingers curled more into hers. "I was hoping to have that dinner with my beautiful wife." Joan let a smile curl the corners of her mouth. "Reservation's at nine."

As he turned and walked away Joan let herself give his hand a little squeeze before he went. Public displays of affection were abhorrent to both of them, but sometimes it helped to be reminded there was more there than just business.

Before she could go over and check on Auggie, Jai walked in, stopping a fair distance back from him as if hesitant to approach.

"Uh, Auggie? It's Jai."

"I can tell," Auggie intoned, not turning to him, fingers still busy on the braille output of his system. "No one else can afford that expensive of cologne and Italian leather shoes make the least amount of creaking of all men's dress shoes."

Jai brandished a file awkwardly, as if only belatedly realizing Auggie couldn't see him do it. "I was assigned one of your old cases. I was hoping you could brief me on it."

"Did you read the case file?" Auggie asked, more matter of fact than brusque in his tone.


"Then you've been briefed. You know as much as I do a typical briefing is one agent reading the file to another..." He finally stopped what he was doing at his workstation and turned his body to face in Jai's direction. "And since it's doubtful you had the file translated into braille for me, I'd say you're the better choice to do the reading right now."

Jai tapped the file against his hand, looking a bit anxious and embarrassed. "Actually there's new intel and I was hoping for your take on how it might apply to this case." He started towards the door. "But if you're busy, I can handle it."

He didn't get far before Auggie called after him.

"Which case?"

Joan watched as Jai stopped then came back a few feet nearer. "The Hollow Man." After a brief pause he continued. "We have new data on what his real identity might be. But the source is suspect."

Auggie let out a breath. "Come back in a couple of hours. My system's tied up processing geo-spacial imagery data for a high priority project, but once it's done I'll have some time to go through the case with you."

"Thanks," Jai told him, looking honestly appreciative. "And hey, a couple of us are going out for drinks afterwards. If you want to join us..."

"I..." Auggie cut himself off. "Let me see how tied up I am at the end of the day. I've got a lot of catching up to do."

"Sure, no problem. Any time. Thanks." As Jai started to walk out Joan came down and intercepted him at the door.

"So you got handed the Hollow Man case?" she asked, a hint of surprise in her voice even though it was little surprise to anyone that Henry's son got handed the choice assignments.

Jai shrugged. "It probably won't go anywhere. He's been a mystery for years. If Auggie couldn't track him I doubt I can." He cocked his head over to where Auggie was sitting, his attention back on his computer system, and lowered his voice. "How is he doing?"

"He is doing fine," Auggie piped up. "And he has the same excellent hearing he's always had."

Joan choked back a chuckle as Jai flushed as much as his dark complexion would allow.

"Just go," she told him, waving him off. "It's nothing."

Jai left, looking flustered, and Joan came over to Auggie, laying her hand maternally on his shoulder.

"You don't have to take a bite out of everyone who comes to visit you, you know?" she teased.

"No, but Jai Wilcox?" Auggie countered.

"He means well."

"Did you miss the part about Wilcox?"

Joan gave Auggie's shoulder an affectionate squeeze. "He's not his father. And he did have a legitimate reason to come see you." Only too late did she regret her choice of words.

Auggie reached up and patted her hand. "Don't worry. I'm pretty sure everyone is going to slip up and say stuff like that to me. 'Nice to see you back!' 'Here, let me show you something.' And the ever popular, 'Look...'"


"It's a process," he told her. "For me and for them. It will pass."

"It may never pass completely," Joan admitted. "But you'll get used to it. I know you. You adapt, Auggie. No matter what life throws at you, you adapt. It's what makes you a good agent."

"Makes, not made?"

"Makes," Joan stressed. "You don't have to be in the field to be damn good at your job or to save lives." She gave him one last squeeze before letting go. "I'm counting on you to impress the hell out of everyone."

Auggie's trademark grin shined on his face.

"Don't I always?"

"Yes," Joan agreed, knowing he could hear her answering smile in her voice. "You do."

.. .
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on January 4th, 2011 09:29 pm (UTC)
This fic was written as a Yuletide Pinch Hit for recipient nightcamedown as part of the 2010 Yuletide challenge. The request was for pre-series backstory team gen with Joan, Arthur, Jai and Auggie with a side option for a bit of Joan/Arthur and bonus points for Joan and Auggie friendship. [Side note to Hollywood producers: Did you not get the memo from fans on making our fic pairings difficult by reusing first initials? Come on! Joan *and* Jai? Arthur, Auggie *and* Annie? Something wrong with the other 24 letters of the alphabet? /grumbles/] Since one of my biggest reasons to adore CA is the fabulous disabled character that is Auggie I chose to focus on his return to work after his injury. It shows how they all subtly come together as a result of a crisis and as much as they all seem very professional, they do really care about each other underneath.

This was my first of two pinch hits this year. Yuletiders, please don't hate me because I was greedy and took two. I had a rough year and this was what made my holiday, okay? /makes pathetic Dickens orphan eyes for forgiveness/

It's only my second CA fic ever and when I went back to the first one I realized I never came up with a custom end of fic symbol for the fandom. Huh. Every fandom I write has a unique end of fic marker and usually a unique chapter marker to go with it. In this case I decided to use the letters C and A in braille as my chapter enders. Not sure what I'll used when I finally have a fic with chapters - maybe just the A. I don't think I've ever used just a dot as a chapter marker.

Title inspired by the Counting Crows album August and Everything After.


Emma DeMarais
hoosierbitchhoosierbitch on January 4th, 2011 09:52 pm (UTC)
This makes me want to catch up on this series! What a lovely look at the team. :-)
One Part Exuberance; Two Parts Obsession: bad ass iantopenguingal on January 5th, 2011 08:10 pm (UTC)
YAY Auggie fic! The best part of an otherwise mediocre show in my opinion. :) Nice to see you tackling his voice and doing it spectacularly well (as always).
(Anonymous) on January 6th, 2011 12:33 am (UTC)
After years of reading you in Numb3rs, it's great to have the pleasure of your fic in my favorite shiny new fandom. Now, if you can just drag Lady Gray and Devon99 along, my CA fic life will be complete.
Emma DeMaraisemmademarais on January 6th, 2011 12:39 am (UTC)
Thank you, Anonymous Reader!

Lady Gray has been pulled headlong into White Collar thankfully, but I'm not sure if CA airs yet in NZ or the UK where Devon is. I shall endeavor to influence them in this direction if I am able.

Thanks for the lovely comment!