"Fuck, the new captain is here," Detective Sommerset declared, choking on his beer. It sloshed as he whipped it away from his mouth and slammed it on the table a little too hard.
Oak Takala snorted. He mentally struck the verbal comma and "is here". His body was already on board with the idea of fucking the new captain. He glanced over his shoulder as the bar erupted with cheers.
"And the old one," a familiar voice said near Oak.
A heavy hand fell on Oak's shoulder. He turned around and grabbed his old man in a half hug. They pounded each other's backs in the time old tradition of rough men showing rough affection in public.
"Hey, dad. Thought you'd ring in the new regime with the guys?" Oak asked.
Former Captain of Police, now voice of the local tribe, John Takala grinned broadly. "You know it. I'm just glad the powers-that-be took my recommendation seriously. Wyatt Peterman's been an asset to the department since he partnered with me as a detective."
"I'm just glad they chose another guy from our precinct instead of bringing in new blood who doesn't know us. Means we're doing something right," Oak added.
His father squeezed his shoulder. "Means I'm doing something right that they took my recommendation."
"So what's your new position like, Cap--Geez, what the hell do I call you now? Mister Takala?" Sommerset wondered.
"Yep, that's all I am now. A civie. The only captain Takala will be my son when Peterman resigns."
"No pressure," Oak noted.
"He's gotta be as good as his old man, first." The new voice sent a hot crawl down Oak's spine.
"Captain Peterman, speak of the devil," Oak's dad did the back-clapping thing with his former partner.
They laughed. John lifted Oak's beer as though it was his own and shouted a toast to the bar filled with off-duty cops. They hoisted their mugs and guzzled amber fluid in deep draining pulls amidst joyful shouts.
Oak tried not to look at the captain out of the corner of his eye, but the man had so much charisma that it grabbed hold of Oak's attention with invisible fists. Determined not to notice, Oak rescued his beer and drained the contents.
"Whoa! Slow down there, partner. You're supposed to be my designated driver," Sommerset complained. "I've had way too many to take the wheel, and you just downed a second pint."
Oak stared into the thread foam at the base of his mug. "I think it's my first."
"No way. Chuckie bought you a second round just before Peterman got here."
"Captain Peterman," both John and Wyatt said at the same time.
"Aw, c'mon, we're off the clock," Sommerset teased.
"Not when it comes to seniority," John corrected.
"Fine, fine, but he's had two beers." Sommerset faced Oak. "You weren't gonna drink Chuckie's."
"I forgot." He had forgotten. Wyatt Peterman, Captain Wyatt Peterman, could make him forget his fucking name if he wanted to. It took a look, a smile, a hit to the chest of the man's deep laugh and deeper dimples, to make Oak go completely tongue-tied.
Another beer appeared in front of him. He stared at it.
"Don't even think about it, man." Sommerset was already claiming the frothy mug.
Oak wrapped his hand around it to stop him. Sommerset's smile disappeared. "Seriously. You can't drive as it is. Neither can I."
"I know. We'll walk," Oak decided.
"I'll drive you," Captain Peterman said.
"He's my kid. I'll take them both home," John protested.
Peterman shouldered in to the bar table they stood around. "You and I both know that even off the clock, I can't throw back beers with the guys. I can't be one of them anymore."
Oak could hear the smile in Peterman's voice, and he resisted the urge to look, choosing to take a long drink of his draft.
"The three of you will have to drink my beers for me, and I'll drive you all home," the captain finished.
Four fresh mugs appeared on the table. Oak was shocked to see the beer he'd been holding was now empty. He reached for his fourth mug. There were perks to being the former captain's kid and the new captain's friend.
There was also a shit-ton of disadvantages. Especially when you lusted after your dad's former partner. It had been bad enough wanting Peterman when he came over to the house for dinner, during Oak's teen years and not being able to do anything about it.
Then there was growing up and joining the force. More than just his dad's partner, he became inter-office taboo. But no, why stop there? Why not promote the object of his desires right into the most unobtainable position on the planet--oh, say, captain--and put him in the same office day in and day out where Oak couldn't help but see him. And it wasn't as if a captain ever left the office. No, he was there overseeing. It fucking increased the hours in a day Oak had to pretend the man didn't turn every one of his hormones into raging drones drawn to the cliff of self-destruction.
Kill him now. Just kill him now. God, his life sucked. Maybe he should put in for a transfer.
"Take it easy, kid. I think you've already reached your limit," Peterman told Oak.
Peterman's upper arm brushed Oak's shoulder. Oak bit back a groan behind the rim of his mug. A warm hand closed over his and pushed the mug to the tabletop. He made the mistake of looking up into Wyatt's dark blue eyes. Since when had the captain grown fuzzy eyes and a halo around his head? He reached a hand up to touch the halo and patted Peterman's head instead.
"Slow down. There isn't a race to drain the tap," Peterman murmured only loud enough for him.
Ah, but Peterman didn't realize that there was a race for drowning his libido before it took a turn he couldn't come back from. "I know what I'm doing," Oak slurred.
"Sure, ya do."
He swung his head around. The room took a minute to settle. "Hey. Where'd dad go?"
"He's in the john," Sommerset told him. He giggled madly. "John's in the john. God, that's funny shit right there." He laughed harder. "Shit! Ha! Funny shit in the john where John is. I'm a fucking comedian."
"Right, it's time to go, boys."
"Not done, boss," Oak argued.
"You're not only done, you're roasted and served up in beer sauce."
Oak smirked. "Maybe you've had too much to drink too."
"Not a sip." Peterman grabbed the upper arms of both men. "Let's go before you find a way to call in sick tomorrow."
"I have days saved up," Oak told him.
"So you're going to call in and leave your partner without a wingman because you drank like a fish one night? You aren't who I thought you were," Peterman countered.
"Yeah." Bright words of wisdom from Sommerset.
"What--I mean, who--did you think I was?"
Peterman spared him a look as he manhandled them through the crowd and into the cooler night air of the parking lot. "An officer."
"Pfft. That's a given captain. I have a badge and everything. It's super shiny."
"Mine is too," Sommerset chimed in.
"Fantastic. Neither of you can hold your liquor, and now I'm going to have two of the three stooges in my backseat."
"How 'bout you join me in the back seat, hm?" Oak wasn't positive, but he had the sinking suspicion that he'd regret that offer tomorrow. He ran the words over in his inebriated mind. Nope, they sounded good. Really, really good. Think of all the things they could do in the backseat of Peterman's car.
"Who'd drive you home if we were all in the backseat?"
"You missed the point completely," Oak complained.
"No, I don't think I did."
He shoved Sommerset into the backseat, policeman style with his hand on his head to keep Sommerset from bumping it on the way in. Sommerset sprawled, laughing as the door closed behind him. He maneuvered Oak to the other side.
"What? You get me drunk, and I don't even get a goodnight kiss?" Oak asked feeling a little sloppy. The captain wasn't standing still, was he? It was hard to tell. He glared at Oak for several seconds, letting Oak's request sink into his own head. Oak slapped a hand over his mouth. Oh shit, he knew that one would haunt him later. That's why he started laughing. Of course, that was why he was laughing and not because he'd just come out of the closet to his captain in a big way.
"Yeah, that's what I thought. Get in."