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Written by Srebrna

2017/11/24 at 20:14

Posted in Uncategorized

Tough Ladies Society

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The bar was full and noisy.
Ellie Bishop sipped her drink and deftly moved out of the way of a group of chatty young women in black jumpsuits.
The bar was full of women.
Ellie wasn’t exactly clear on how she got there and it was worrying her a bit. She was a special agent and she was supposed to know better than to find herself in a strange place, with no familiar face in sight and drinking something she wasn’t sure she ordered.
Fortunately the “no familiar face” was resolved in a matter of minutes as the ball of black lace and ADHD that was Abby approached her and started chatting in excitement about some friends she met.
OK, so I came here with Abby. That’s a relief. At least I hope so.
Abby’s friends invariably turned out to be a bit weird, but usually they were safe. Girl had good instincts.
“And you have to meet Kate” Abby gushed finally. “I kind of didn’t expect to find her here, but she is, and you will love her!”
Ellie blinked.
Abby smiled wider than usually.
“Caitlin Todd. She worked with us like ten years ago.”
Ellie blinked again.
“Caitlin? The one that was…”
“Shot” unfamiliar voice supplied from behind her. “Yeah, that would be me.”
A smiling face, very fit body and… a band-aid in the middle of her forehead. Scull-and-bones bandaid, obviously from Abby’s supplies.
“I needed to cover the hole” Kate noticed Ellie’s gaze. “Ducky did a good job sewing it up and covering the mark before the funeral, but here it stayed as it was at the moment of my death, unfortunately. I don’t want to scare anyone by leaking something by accident. Caitlin Todd, Secret Service, NCIS, whatever you pick.”
“Ellie Bishop” she put away her drink and shook proffered hand. “NSA, NCIS.”
“Gibbs still in the business of stealing agents from other places?”
Ellie snorted.
“We even have an MI-6 guy now.”
“Wow” Kate sipped her own drink. “Any other gals from NCIS around here?”
“Aaa…” Abby hummed to herself. “I am pretty sure I saw the other Abigail, although she’s Coast Guard, actually. And Kensi.”
“Kensi?” Ellie asked, waving the barman for a refill.
“The one from Los Angeles branch” Abby explained absently, as her eyes scanned for something in the crowd. Her hand went up to cover her mouth.
“Abby? What is it?”
Ellie strained to see over the heads of taller women when suddenly the crowds parted enough for her to see two figures hugging. Finally they disengaged, revealing one of them to be, in fact, someone known to her – Special Agent Borin – but the other…
A woman on the opposite side of the room winced, but Ziva fluidly turned towards Abby and accepted the enthusiastic Goth with a hug of her own.
Ellie moved a step towards them, greeting Agent Borin and surveying the two brunettes in the middle. Suddenly there was a lot of movement, and a flash of red hair joined the two, then another redhead run past Ellie and hugged Kate with ferocity.
“Rachel” Ellie could only hear before others separated them. She and Borin silently toasted each other and watched Abby try to hug the last breath out of Ziva with pleasure.

Kate twirled her glass between her fingers as she watched the throngs of complete strangers. She wasn’t exactly sure what happened to get her here, but she vaguely remembered an invitation delivered to the precinct for her and the captain. The boys wanted to know what was going on, but as she herself wasn’t all that sure, she hid the envelope in the one place they’d never dare to touch – her purse – and ignored it until she got home.
Now she wasn’t all that sure she made the right choice to accept it. She felt more and more alone, despite the amount of women around her.
“Weird, huh?” a raspy voice asked from behind her.
She turned, smiling already.
“Detective Rizzoli” she greeted the taller woman.
“Ah-ah. Agent Rizzoli” the other corrected her. “As of last week, I’m officially working for FBI.”
“Been there, done that” Beckett quipped. “Now, is there anyone familiar here, or is it just a random party… just for girls?”
Rizzoli shrugged.
“I’ve seen a few I know – from the force – most look about as bewildered as you just were. I think I even identified a few Brits, just by the accent. Not sure what the theme is supposed to be, but the very fact that there is a limited number of people here who would be looking down my blouse and drooling or trying to squeeze my ass is a relief.”
Beckett nodded and looked around them.
“Play a game?” she whispered.
“What kind?”
Jane snorted.
“Easy. Me first. The brunette with a clip on the top of her head… is it for her fringe, or what?”
“Probably. Tall Latina in the corner.”
“She is wearing an uniform” Jane said in mild reproach. “That’s cheating.”
“Never said civilian clothes only.”
“Mhm. So, the pretty Afroamerican by the other bar.”
“Nice. Blonde in red leather jacket.”
“You sure?”
“Looks like it. Also, she forgot to take off her sheriff badge.”
“Mh-hm. The other blonde, just next to her. Either police or military.”
“Military, definitely. Look at her posture. Like a ramrod up her…”
“So the two tall ones at the table. One if definitely British, I can hear her accent from here. The other is American. Both look like they could pound a guy twice their side into ground. Maybe not police, but I’d bet they both have service weapons.”
The couple in question obviously barely had eyes for anyone else, as the taller woman looked adoringly at her companion.
“Add the wavy-haired, short one alone there by the pillar” a new voice said from behind them and Kate all but jumped, almost spilling her drink.
“Hi, Kate” redhead kissed her cheek. “Sorry to sneak up on you, but you didn’t react when I weaved.”
“How do you know that last one is a cop?”
Alexis rolled her eyes.
“She told me. She used to be a WPC, from Manchester. Very old-school, but she was just promoted to detective and she’s very excited about it. Her boyfriend is a detective, too, so she is worried about consequences of dating someone in the office. Kind of spills almost everything when prompted.”
Kate nodded and hugged her stepdaughter just a bit.
“Does your father know you’re here?”
Alexis sighed deeply.
“I’m, like, twenty, Mum. Also, I’m drinking soda.”
“OK. Just keep away from…”
“There are no guys here, Kate. I think I’ll be quite safe.”
As Alexis made her way towards a group of younger girls, chatting quietly by the far wall, Rizzoli nodded in appreciation.
“Your daughter?”
“Rick’s. I got her as a package deal, and I’m trying to be the best possible stepmother for her” Kate shrugged. “Her own mother is a bit of an idiot, so Alexis attaches herself to stronger role models in her life. She loves Laine and had already assisted at the coroner’s office for some time. And she had a short period of following me like a worshipper in the religion of Kate. Managed to get her to loosen up a bit, but it took time. She’s trying to balance Rick’s stupid ideas by being a grownup of the family.”
Jane raised her glass and clinked it carefully against Kate’s.
“To girls with great role models.”

She heard both her name and surname called a few times, but every time it actually was someone else who was wanted. Small table hidden by a bit of a wall made a good hiding spot and so she alternated drinking her beer with gnawing on a fingernail.
“You really shouldn’t do it” a low, furry voice came from the other side of the short wall.
Abbie’s head shot up to see a slightly amused woman looking down at her.
“Joss” the woman weaved slightly. “You prefer sitting alone, or would you rather join us?”
The company was a bit strange. Abby was working very hard on understanding the group dynamic between Joss – who was obviously a police officer, which was a relief – Zoe, Shaw and Root. They seemed very… integrated, and that included Root and Shaw holding hands, in a rather desperate manner, for the whole time. When they left for a moment to get new drinks from the bar, Abbie managed to shoot Joss a questioning glance.
“Root died” the older woman explained quietly. “And Shaw had issues. I’m happy they can meet sometimes, like this.”
Abbie blinked and considered that for a moment.
“I died, too” she whispered. “I didn’t notice it until now, but…” she trailed off. “Oh, my. I died.”
“Well, so did I” Joss shrugged. “One crooked cop left and he managed to do so much damage.”
Zoe patted her hand.
“The boys were devastated” she said quietly. “But Harold managed to secure a scholarship for your son and get him out of the city.”
Joss inhaled, closing her eyes.
“It’s good this is only ladies’ evening” she said, shakily. “I don’t think I could have managed otherwise. Say ‘hi’ to John for me, ok?”
Zoe nodded slowly.
“I… I will.”
As Root and Shaw made their way back to the table, they were trailed by a hunched figure in a hoodie.
“I think we’ve found something you’ll like, agent Mills” Root giggled slightly. “And she looks exactly like you.”

“Would you stop doing that?”
“What?” she smirked and her eyes flashed gold again.
“That. Every time you do that, I start looking for a Dalek.”
“Come on. You’re just jealous.”
“Sure. I’m the only at least superficially normal one.”
“Oi! Who are you calling crazy!”
“And why are your eyes flashing? Are you making fun of me?”

Moira hugged herself in slight discomfort. Her clothes visibly contrasted with much clingier and skimpier fashion of obviously younger women around her. She leaned on one of the pillars and tried to locate any familiar face, but the only one she could actually hope for was Raven – and that meant she could search for hours. She really hoped she wouldn’t see Jean or Ororo, because that would have been a bad end to that evening. Hauling home two protesting under-21s would be hard anyway, and Jean and Ororo in particular…
“FBI?” someone asked from her left.
“CIA” she smiled. “You?”
“FBI” the redhead handed her a glass. “Looking for someone?”
“Ah, a sister of a friend. But it may not be exactly her type of place.”
“She wouldn’t be interested in this kind of company?” a British-accented suggestion came from the right. “Myself, I’m quite happy to see that many law enforcement females in one place. At home, I just have one girl on the team. I was hoping for one, maybe two more, but our department didn’t really get the memo about equality hiring.”
The FBI agent snorted.
“My department had exact fifty-fifty. Me and my partner, the wacko.”
Moira shrugged.
“I actually got demoted to steno pool after a short stint as the only woman in the whole division. Because they didn’t like my results.”
“Didn’t do so good?”
“Too good” she shrugged. “But I got amnesia so they could kick me down the ladder without even giving a good reason.”
“Ouch” the other two emitted in unison.
“I almost got demoted for being crazy, but, well, amnesia is also good. I’m Alex, by the way.”
“Moira” she shook the offered hand.
“Dana. The normal one, supposedly.”

“Look at her.”
Martha strained to see in the direction pointed.
“Which one?”
“The stressed one by the bar. Do you see her clothes? She’s like what, World War Two?”
“Looks like it. Did they have women soldiers?”
“Jack would know. Also, he would drool.”
“What are you two blathering about?!”

Laine was making a schematic of her latest autopsy on the table covered with paper napkins, drawing in red wine, as Maura and Camille leaned in to see better the details.
“And there was a cut, all the way through the lung, up to the trachea. We spent hours trying to work out what kind of blade would do this kind of damage.”
Camille looked at her expectantly.
“A sleigh runner. Someone unscrewed a metal runner from kids sleigh and rammed it up the guy’s stomach.”
“That is something which would never have happened in New Orleans” a remark from behind them made them look around at Loreta’s smiling face. “We can get all sorts of things, but not a sleigh runner.”
“Well, we in New York don’t get Mardi Gras murders” Laine remarked wryly. “I’ll take sleigh runners every day if I don’t have to deal with the freaky stuff that you get in N.O.”

Ziva combed back her hair, looking at Kate in fascination.
Ellie couldn’t get her eyes off Ziva and Kate.
Rachel couldn’t be separated from Kate, there seemed to be no place even for a prybar.
Abby couldn’t decide if she wanted to hug Kate or Ziva more.
Abigail and Jenny knocked back a bourbon each and were sitting there quietly, looking in contentment at the younger women.
“I wish I had a chance to watch them work all together” Jenny remarked quietly. “They would have knocked the boys flat on their collective ass.”
Abigail chuckled.
“They did anyway. Both Ziva and Ellie, at least as far as I’ve worked with them. Ellie can run circles around them with all her smarts, maybe slightly less with McGee, but still.”
Jenny nodded slowly, but stiffened suddenly at the sight of a tall blonde in the middle of the doorway.
Abby’s head shot up.

“Now, mother, how are you doing?”
“Reasonably well, considering. Do you have any idea how I possibly got out of the time lock in Manhattan?”
“Probably they same way I am out of the Library.”

“Cassie, don’t be nervous. Just lot of people. I know you aren’t very happy in the crowd, but…”
“Eve, it’s not that. It’s something wrong about the room itself” Cassandra’s eyes unfocused. “It’s like… someone had warped the space here, to make a normal room not only be big enough for however many people, but…” she weaved, arranging her visualisation. “Ah. There is a time continuum problem, too.”
“Do we have to do something about it?” Eve sipped her drink, still observing her surroundings suspiciously.
“God, that sounds so like me” someone joined them without Eve noticing, which made her flinch uncontrollably.
“Excuse me?”
The newcomer raised her glass to them.
“I’ll drink to time continuum problems” she laughed. “Susan, Susan Ivanova. General. Earth Force. ”
“Eve Baird. Major. NATO.”
Susan smirked.
“Guessed so. Cheers.”
They drained their glasses, looking on as Cassandra tried to reorganise the hallucination of the room’s schematics.
“That’s a nice place” Susan remarked casually. “Come here often?”
Eve shrugged.
“Mostly I’m stuck with the team of crazy scientists – and a thief – so I don’t really have time for socialising. But it’s nice, really. Probably good for Cassie, too. She doesn’t socialise at all.”
“She OK?” Susan nodded towards Cassie, who was obviously fascinated with whatever she saw in the air in front of her.
“Quite. Just doing magic.”

“Dear me” she whispered, watching the crowd around her. “I might have seen the Loch Ness Monster, but this is something new.”

Annie held onto her beer carefully and tried to make her way across the floor to the redhead she spoke to before – at least to find a slightly-familiar face, when her ears caught a bit of conversation she just had to follow.
“…and that neanderthal says ‘I’m bigger in every department’. You know, three minutes after meeting and he’s already spewing innuendo. And it’s been like this for next three years. Bloody Gene Hunt.”
“Wow” another woman breathed. “That’s some crappy boss. At least Mulder never ever said stuff like this. Others may have, of course, but never Mulder. And our actual boss would never… FBI had very strict rules. They might have treated me like an idiot and, of course, paid me less than Mulder ever got, but at least no sexual advances.”
“Gene Hunt was one big, smoking, suspect-hitting narcissistic sexual advance.”
“Excuse me” Annie managed finally. “Are you talking about DCI Gene Hunt?”
The woman looked at her in surprise.
“Is there a chance for more than one Gene Hunt in police force? I hope not, because that would probably break some natural laws.”
Annie smiled finally.
“DC Anne Tyler, nice to meet ya.”
The other’s eyes widened.
“Annie? Annie Carthwright?”
“Wow” she breathed and suddenly pulled her into a hug. “And you married him? Sam?”
Annie frowned.
“Do I know you?”
“No, no, sit down” she patted the place next to her. “I’m Alex. Alex Drake, DI. 1981.”
Annie nodded.
“So you came after we…”
“Went to the pub, yeah.”
“Never met you there.”
Alex shrugged.
“I suppose I’m still stuck somewhere near the door.”
One of the others made a small sound.
“Ah. Sorry. This is Dana Scully, from FBI. And Moira MacTaggert, CIA.”
“Nice to meet you both” Annie nodded, but her focus came back to Alex.
“Why would you be near the door? We’re in the back, everyone is in the back, actually.”
Alex cringed a bit.
“I’m still counting on him finally coming through.”
Annie’s eyes went even wider than Alex’s.
“You mean the Guv? Why would you be waiting for the Guv? He’ll never come…”
“Well, than Nelson will keep serving me margaritas on the doorstep.”

Ororo watched Hermione wave her wand in fascination. The girl had skills. Maybe with someone like this their school would have been in less trouble from outsiders.
“And all your facilities are hidden from surveillance?”
Hermione nodded, still swirling the wand.
“Cloaking spell” she explained shortly. “You have to know the thing is there and to know how to get through the cloak. Even planes fly over our school and they just can’t see it. There are whole sections of London blocked from external influence.”
Jean made a face and fixed her hair.
Ginny straightened a bit and shook her tresses back in a gesture vaguely resembling Miss Piggy.
Jean snorted silently.
Ginny rolled her eyes.
“You two, knock it off” Hermione warned. “You’re disturbing my spell.”
Ororo glanced at them.
“What were they doing?”
Hermione gave the spell the last twirl.
“Probably trying to play the reddest redhead. Also, you’re both kind of second place. That one” she pointed out a slender, short-haired woman in a group next to them “wins every redhead contest, for me.”
“That’s a dye job” Ginny protested.
“It is a very good dye job” Hermione shrugged and tapped her wand against the glass three times. “Now, this is ready. A sip each and we can party until the dawn and not regret it tomorrow. No-hangover potion, coming up.”
Ororo looked at the sparkling fluid with suspicion.
“Oh, come on” Ginny seized the glass and took the first sip. “Let’s have some fun!”

Maggie watched her sister in worry, hoping for the frown lines to finally relax. Mere never seemed to relax anymore, and that worried Maggie more and more. Suddenly she saw her sister’s face crumble and eyes tear up. She scanned the crowd for anyone even vaguely familiar – bloody Derek, or what? – but couldn’t understand what might have shook Meredith so. That is until the crowd parted strategically and a thin, tall, weavy-haired brunette pushed herself towards them.
“Alexandra Caroline Grey, what the hell are you doing here?” Meredith’s voice quavered slightly and broke on the last word.
Maggie’s eyes widened as she watched her sister hug, well, her sister.
We’re one messed up family.
Meredith visibly winced, but turned slowly around to stare at the tall redhead.
“Ah. Addison.”
Suddenly Mere found herself swept in a hug.
“You should have called me” Addison complained softly. “I’d have been there for you.”
Scratch that… It’s more than just one family.

“Not that I’m complaining, Regina, but do you have any idea what this may all be about?”
The brunette shrugged, downing another drink.
“Not my curse, this time.”
“Well, unless it included another memory charm.”
“And a wish to be surrounded by all this… femininity.”
“You’d rather be here, now, for an evening, or at home, trying to work out all the mess we’re stuck in?”
“Also, your mother apparently isn’t here to talk at us.”
Emma’s eyes widened and she quickly turned to the bar for another drink.

“A bloody ballgown” she snickered. “What I’d give for a normal dress!”
“I could magic you one. But blue is really not your colour.”
“What I’d give for a normal pair of slippers. Everyone thinks that glass ones are my signature and that joke stopped being funny years ago.”
“What I’d give for a walk in the woods when I’m not being accosted by some wild animals trying to be my best friends.”
“What I’d give for a haircut!”
“What I’d give for… Actually, I think I’m fine. Finally, I don’t have to clean and mend everything anymore” the brunette at the end of the table remarked and knocked away a shot. “You have no idea how much mess seven little guys can make.”
“Ouch. Tough. At least customers in my restaurant finally learnt there’s a limit to what they can do in establishment co-owned by kingdom of Molvania. Apparently royal guards, even retired, do make for effective calming force.”
“Try travelling with a military camp. These guys aren’t just messy. They take messy to a new level.”
“At least if someone makes mess on the deck of a boat, it’s washed away” the next girl shrugged. “And either they learn to put their stuff away or they lose a lot.”

“How’s the base?”
“Still keeping above water. How’s SGC?”
“Still not invaded.”
“He’s fine. We’re fine. And…?”
“Fine, too” Elizabeth nodded, smiling. “At least you don’t have to worry about chain of command anymore” she added.
“You two never had to.”
“Well, technically. Imagine what Rodney would have done, had he ever found out.”
“Really, bringing up McKay, at such a lovely event.”
“He remains the bane of our existence, and also probably John’s best friend.”
Samantha sipped her beer.
“You should find John some better friends.”

A group of four by the large window stared at everything in awe.
The mechanic summed it up in one fascinated word.

“I suppose many of you are wondering what is going on here” a voice came out of tall speakers and suddenly whole room was hushed. A tiny woman at the top of a dais was now highlighted by a strong lamp. “As the secretary of state Madeleine Albright once said, ‘There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women’. With this in mind, I organised this meeting – and this meeting place. With a lot of help from our friends from across the pond” she gestured and Bad Wolf cheerily waved to everyone “and certain other places” there was a moment for Susan Ivanova to give a short bow, just as she was joined by a regal-looking Minbari “we’ve managed to set up this corner of the universe that meets all of our homes at the same time. And you can stop trying to work it out, miss Cillian, it can only make your migraine worse if you try.”
“Hetty!” Abby grinned happily at her.
“Yes, Miss Sciuto, that is most definitely me. Now, as I was saying. This is a gathering place for all of us. For each of us female companionship is scarce, and some are rather lonesome in their daily life between men only, or, even worse, under someone’s direct and unwelcome control. We will try to make the invitation reach more and more persons interested, but for today, this is how fat the word had gotten. You can visit here any time you wish. You can come and just… be together, without being judged or having to prove yourselves. Everyone is welcome here, from a scullery maid to a… Ah. Welcome, your Highness.”
Two newcomers joined the crowd and Hetty was addressing the taller of the two, all swathed in white and with a probably a very uncomfortable hairdo resembling a set of headphones.
“I’m glad you could come. It is true, after all, that you live so far, far away.”

“What are you going to call this place, my dear Hetty?”
The tiny woman swallowed her tea and considered the point very carefully.
“I was thinking of something along the lines of ‘Tough Ladies Society'” she said slowly. “But it doesn’t really sound that well.”
Jessica grimaced and shuffled the cards.
“I’d go for “Tough Bitches Society”, but that’s me. Now, who’s in for a round of bridge?”
Hetty leaned back.
“I’ll just watch, but that may be interesting. However I’m sure Mrs Steward would gladly join you.”
“Kate, you interested?”
Tall blonde in an impeccable business suit turned briefly towards them.
“Sure, how could I not be. Just give me a minute” she turned to her bespectacled companion and pointed out someone in the crowd. “Go and bother her for a bit. She was all over space and time, after all. She may have better answers than UNIT can provide.”
“So, that would be Kate and me against the two of you” Jessica started dealing the cards. “Hope you’re up to the challenge.”
The other two glanced at each other and smirked.
“Now, Miss Rosenberg” Hetty patted one of them on the shoulder. “No powers. You know what I mean.”

“Tough Bitches Society” Olivia smirked at Olivia. “That sounds about right.”
Olivia punched her lightly on the shoulder.
“And you’d get a senior citizen discount, with all this gray hair.”
Olivia spluttered for a moment.
“You, you… You young person.”
Olivia rolled her eyes.
“You two are not actually arguing, are you?” Astrid asked, stressing the last words. “Because, you know” she nodded towards Astrid.
“You are referring to my lack of ability in social situations, but don’t worry. I am doing much better recently, thank you.”
“Still. You two better not argue, or I will tell Lee and Peter.”
Olivias groaned.

“Mm. Do you think Claudia is somewhere…” Myka trailed off, leaning on the bar and watching the women in the room.
Helena handed her a glass and raised her own in toast.
“I hope so” her tone was genuinely concerned. “That girl doesn’t get out enough. Here, at least, she has a chance to find someone her own age and get some girl bonding time without Pete interfering.”
“He does take the big brother thing a bit too far” Myka agreed. “A propos, I was wondering…” she smiled at her companion. “What could we do, making use of a Pete-free evening.”
Helena smiled in an altogether wicked way.

Written by Srebrna

2017/11/22 at 09:34

Posted in Uncategorized