Friends or More by Patt

Friends or More - Patt

Andy Flynn sat at his desk trying to work while watching Provenza parade a new woman into the bullpen. He tried to ignore Provenza as much as he could, but it was hard to not give the woman some attention. It wasn’t Provenza’s fault that Lieutenant Flynn was in love with him. He would never say anything to Provenza. He just watched him from afar. Provenza was always trying to get Flynn to double date with him. He could never seem to understand why this didn’t sound good to Flynn. He was such a moron and his women got younger and younger. Didn’t he ever tire out? Flynn couldn’t keep up with him, so it’s just as well that he didn’t know how he felt. Provenza really could be a moron sometimes.

Deputy Chief, Brenda Johnson walked into the bullpen, madder then she’d been in ages.

“Lieutenant Provenza, this is no place to bring your dates,” she said.

“I was just showing her the bullpen, Chief,” Provenza said with his charming smile in force.

“Like I said, it’s no place for dating. Please escort her from the building,” Chief Johnson said as calmly as she could. “Then when you get back up here, please join Lieutenant Flynn and myself in my office.”

“A new case, perhaps?” Provenza asked hopefully. Things had been really slow.

“Do what I ask,” The Chief spoke louder this time.

“Come on sugar, I’ll walk you to the elevator. They’re all jealous,” Provenza said as he left the room. Tao and Sanchez started to snicker. You couldn’t help but fall for Provenza’s humor.

Well, one person was jealous and that was Flynn, but no one knew but him. Now what did Chief Johnson have in store for them? Flynn closed down the program he was working on, shut his computer down and walked over to her office and knocked.

“Come in Lieutenant,” She called out.

He smiled as he entered the room, hoping that would pave the way, but she looked disgusted.

“Sit down, Lieutenant and we’ll wait for Lieutenant Provenza to come back. I don’t want to have to say all of this twice,” she said.

“Just tell me this, how much trouble am I in?” he asked.

“You’re not in any trouble, it’s a new case. Well, actually it’s an old case and you have to wrap it up for me,” Deputy Chief Johnson said smiling.

Flynn was a bit unnerved by her smile. It almost looked evil. The type of evil that meant they’re going to hate this assignment. At that moment, Provenza walked in and sat down in the chair next to Flynn.

“So what’s up Chief?” Lieutenant Louie Provenza asked.

“Do you both remember the Miles Carter case from last year?” she inquired.

“Of course we remember, we never found him. He just disappeared,” Provenza said angrily. “Why?”

“They have him in lock-up in Cascade, Washington. You’ll need to go and pick him up. But first he has to testify in court. Once that’s done, it’s my understanding that he’ll be handed over to the two of you. It might take up to five or six days. I want you there so there will be no chance of him slipping through anyone’s fingers. I want to close this damn case,” Chief Johnson said.

Provenza asked, “Cascade, Washington? I’ve never been there but it sounds boring. Is it a small town?”

“I don’t care if it’s the size of LA, we’re going to get Miles Carter back and that’s all that matters. We’re going to be able to close this case. The two of you will be staying at Cascade Towers Hotel and we have the arrangements set up for seven nights, just in case. You’ll be meeting two detectives from Major Crimes in Cascade and just don’t embarrass me,” Chief Johnson added quickly.

“We have to hang out with two yokels from Cascade?” Provenza asked mournfully.

“Oh for heavens sake! Look at this like a vacation, not a job. It’s going to be one of the easiest things you’ve ever had to do. Stop whining, both of you. I’ve given you your assignment, now here are your tickets,” She said as she handed the tickets to each of them.

“Wait a minute, these are coach,” Provenza shouted.

“Do you have a problem, Lieutenant?” Chief Johnson barked.

“I hate this job sometimes,” Provenza said under his breath, but both Flynn and Chief Johnson heard what he said. They both smiled. He was miserable, and this made them both happy.

~~~~~

Cascade, Washington, Captain Simon Banks’ office:

“What do you mean we have to babysit two cops from LA?” Detective Jim Ellison asked Captain Simon Banks.

“I didn’t say babysit, I said entertain,” Simon corrected Jim Ellison.

Detective Blair Sandburg was up next. “Why would we have to entertain anyone from LA? What are they here for?”

“Did you both forget that I’m the Captain? I give the orders, if I say you’re going to entertain someone for six days, you’re going to do just that. Am I understood?” Simon barked.

“Understood,” Jim answered and then asked, “Why are they here?”

“They’re here to be sure we don’t loose Miles Carter. They lost him last year and can’t wait to get their hands on him again. He has to testify while he’s here in our jail and then Lieutenant Flynn and Provenza will be escorting him back to Los Angeles. I expect you to treat them with respect. Take them to dinner a few times and show them some of the city when you can. Other than that, I think they can take care of themselves,” Simon explained.

“Oh goody,” Blair answered and started walking out the door.

“Don’t get excited yet. They’re coming in tonight. You’re going to meet them at the airport at 7:00 and take them to the Cascade Towers Hotel and maybe have dinner with them. You can fill them in on Carter while you eat,” Simon ordered.

“As Sandburg said, oh goody,” Jim said trying for a small smile.

“If you hurry, you’ll beat traffic to the airport. Here is a sign with their names on it. Hold it up when you get there,” Simon snapped and handed them the sign.

“For Christ’s sake, we have to hold a sign up?” Blair asked.

“Get out of here before I lose my temper,” Simon barked sounding somewhat infuriated.

“Yeah, yeah, yeah, “Blair said as he walked past his desk to get his jacket. He looked at Jim and said, “Are we going to have fun, partner?”

“Oh yeah, I see it now. We’ll be writing in our journals all fucking night long,” Jim said very sarcastically.

“It might not be that bad, you know? We get to meet someone new for a change, that isn’t a bad thing. That’s something, eh?” Blair inquired.

“You always try and find something good in everything, but this might just be out of our league. They’re from LA, Blair. They’re going to be bored out of their minds in Cascade. We’d be better off if we were taking Carter to them and they could show us their town,” Jim complained.

“Oh man, give them a chance. They might be upstanding guys, you just never know,” Blair hoped.

They got downstairs and got into the truck and Jim said, “Shit, I’m going to have to rent a car for a week. I only have the one bench seat. It’s not like all four of us can sit on it.”

“Well, let’s get to the airport so we can get a nice sized vehicle, just in case they are large sized individuals,” Blair suggested.

“They pulled out of the police parking lot and made their way to the Cascade Airport. There was a lot of complaining done by Jim and Blair just kept smiling at his partner/lover and hoped this wasn’t going to be as bad as Jim was making it out to be.

~~~~~

Flynn tried to get comfortable on the stupid airplane but was having a hard time getting his six foot one frame into the small seats. Provenza on the other hand, was fitting his five foot seven frame into the seats just fine.

“So what do you think we have to do with the yokels from Cascade?” Provenza asked.

“First of all, stop calling them that. I’m sure they wouldn’t take kindly to being called yokels,” Flynn warned.

“Do you believe we’re getting a chance at picking up Carter again? This time, he’s not going to get out of our sight,” Provenza stated.

“If we came back empty handed, I would just move to a different town,” Flynn joked.

As they sat side by side, Provenza started to fall asleep on Flynn’s shoulder. This made Flynn smile. He had dreams of Louie Provenza falling asleep on his shoulder all the time. Too bad they were on a plane and Provenza didn’t know Flynn was alive. He looked down and saw what a nice package Provenza was packing in his trousers. Flynn wasn’t above noticing. As Provenza started to snore, Flynn relaxed and just had a little day dream about the two of them being together.

The next thing he knew, they were landing and he was almost hard from his thoughts of Provenza. Damn it, keep your thoughts on the job, Flynn.

“You okay, partner?” Provenza asked.

“Yeah, I’m fine. I’ll be better when we have Carter and we’re flying back to LA. This case can’t be closed soon enough for me,” Flynn declared.

“Oh no, the one that it won’t be soon enough for, is Chief Johnson. You know how she has to close a case. That’s always been a thorn in her side. This will help things out a lot,” Provenza promised.

They walked off the plane and walked down to the baggage area and stood waiting for their bags.

Flynn looked around the room and saw two cops. He knew they were cops right away. One looked like he was from vice, but he still had the look and the other one just looked like a tough cop. They were holding up a sign with Flynn and Provenza on it.

“The cops are here,” Flynn told Provenza.

“Damn it, I was hoping they wouldn’t show up, being yokels and all,” Provenza whispered.

Jim leaned into Blair and said, “The short one just called us yokels.”

“Who are you calling short. He’s the same height as I am,” Blair joked as he eyeballed who Jim was looking at.

“I call em’ like I see em’,” Jim teased back.

They both headed over to Flynn and Provenza and Flynn smiled at Jim and held his hand out to shake.

“We’re the yokels from Cascade here to pick you up,” Jim said shaking Flynn’s hand.

Flynn glared at Provenza and Provenza said, “I was just teasing. I get nervous when I’m in a new town. Especially one that is this small.”

“Yokel’s R us,” Blair said holding his hand out.

“I’m Lieutenant Andy Flynn from Major Crimes in Los Angeles and this is Lieutenant Louie Provenza. And you are?”

“I’m Detective Jim Ellison and this is Detective Blair Sandburg,” Jim said in way of introducing them.

Flynn leaned down and picked up his luggage and said, “We’re as ready as we’ll ever be.”

Jim said, “Follow us.”

Jim and Blair walked ahead of them and Provenza whispered, “How much do you want to bet that they’re a ‘fairy’ nice couple?”

Jim stopped and turned around and glared at Provenza. “If you have a question, ask us. I don’t appreciate your remarks.”

“Are you a couple?” Provenza asked point blank.

“Provenza, what are you doing? The Chief is going to have your ass on a platter,” Flynn said, quite embarrassed for both of them.

Blair smiled at Flynn and said, “Yes, we’re a couple. If this bothers you, we can have you assigned to another two officers. We didn’t realize that it was that big of a deal.”

Flynn smiled back at him and said, “It’s not a big deal to me. But let’s ask Provenza.”

They all stood and looked at Provenza waiting for his answer. “All right, it’s fine with me. I don’t know how in the hell you hear this shit.”

Jim started walking again without saying a word to them. Flynn knew that Jim was upset with all of this talking. He didn’t seem like a big talker. But Sandburg on the other hand, looked like everyone’s friend. Flynn liked him immediately.

“So, Ellison, do you know where we’re staying?” Provenza asked.

“Cascade Towers Hotel, room 225,” Jim answered.

“We’re in one room?” Provenza asked.

“Yes, the plans were made from Los Angeles, so if you have a problem with sharing a room, you better take it up with them,” Jim explained.

“I’m just wondering how I’m supposed to meet anyone nice here if I’m sharing a room with Flynn,” Provenza said.

They walked up to the SUV that Jim had rented and Jim opened up the back for the luggage and he and Flynn put them in.

Provenza said, “Could I sit in the front? I get car sick in the back.”

Flynn stared at him like he was nuts and Jim said, “Whatever.”

Provenza really didn’t want the ‘fairy’ nice boys in the front seat together. He thought he handled it quite well. He seriously didn’t have anything against gay people, but he liked giving this man a hard time. Provenza was known for provoking people.

“Provenza, it’s not like we make out while we’re working or driving,” Blair said from the back seat.

“Oh, it has nothing to do with that. I just get car sick,” Provenza swore.

“Would you both like to have dinner with us tonight?” Blair asked nicely.

Provenza glared at Flynn as his answer, but Flynn said, “Sure that would be great. You can fill us in on Carter. We’re dying to hear what he’s been up to and our Chief asked us to find out what was going on with him.”

“Sounds good,” Blair replied.

Jim almost laughed, at the look on Provenza’s face. Jim wondered if he was used to being around anyone gay. He didn’t seem hateful, just not used to it. Or he was hiding something. Flynn on the other hand, seemed to be very open to the idea.

Jim pulled up in the parking lot of Cascade Towers and Flynn said, “Is this a mistake? This place looks really nice.”

“You were expecting something more yokelish?” Jim asked, not knowing if that was even a word.

Flynn burst out laughing and said, “We honestly weren’t expecting anything this nice. We were thinking more on the lines of Super Eight, if you know what I mean. Chief Pope is a tight wad with expenses, so this just surprises me.”

It was Blair’s turn to laugh and said, “Our Captain is a tight wad too. But he said Chief Johnson made the reservations for you.”

“Nothing against you, Flynn, but I’d like to have my own room,” Provenza said.

“Do whatever you want,” Flynn said as he grabbed his luggage and walked into the lobby.

“Do you always piss him off?” Blair asked Provenza.

“I go out of my way to do it daily, Sandburg.” Provenza answered. “He’ll get over it. He always does.”

Provenza walked up to the desk and checked in and asked for another room.

The clerk said, “I’m sorry, we’re having a convention so there is nothing in town. I’ve already checked at all of the other hotels for other guests.”

“You have got to be kidding?” Provenza asked.

“Looks like we’re going to be roomies after all,” Flynn joked.

“Joke all you want, but you’re going to be sitting out in the hall when I have a hot date,” Provenza warned.

Jim started laughing and Provenza said, “What are you laughing at Ellison?”

“I just never saw someone come into a town to pick up a perp and talk about getting laid. Just surprised me is all,” Jim admitted.

Flynn smiled and said, “I have to live with him for the next week, think how I feel?”

Blair smiled knowing Flynn seemed comfortable with them and said, “Hell, if you want to stay in our spare room, you’re welcome to it.”

Jim just glared at Blair. What the fuck is he doing?

“Depending on how Provenza treats me, I just might take you up on that,” Flynn answered.

Provenza pulled Flynn aside and said, “You’re kidding, right?”

“What do you care, you’re the one that doesn’t want me in your room?”

“We’ll work it out, Andy. Don’t worry about it,” Provenza said.

Jim almost smiled at Provenza using Flynn’s first name.

“Why don’t you get settled in your room, and we’ll get a table in the restaurant. We’ll meet you there in say, 20 minutes?” Jim asked.

“Sure, 20 minutes ought to be plenty of time. Thank you,” Flynn said and walked towards the elevator. Provenza followed him grumbling the entire way.

~~~~~

Once they got a table, they waited patiently for the other two men to show up.

“So what do you think of them?” Blair asked Jim.

“I think that Flynn is pretty nice, but has a thing for Provenza and he’ll never get anywhere with that dick,” Jim replied.

“Why don’t you tell me how you really feel, Jim?”

Jim smiled and said, “I like them just fine. We’ll make the best out of this week. It should be interesting.”

Blair said, “Oh shit, let me run out to the SUV and get the files, so they can look them over.”

“Thanks, Chief.”

Provenza and Flynn walked in while Blair was out in the car. Provenza said, “Did you piss the little woman off?”

“I’m going to tell you once and once only, if you don’t like us, we’ll get someone else to work with. But I don’t have to put up with your shit. Your idea of humor and mine are different. Maybe because we’re yokels,” Jim snapped.

“Geeze, I’m sorry. I won’t say another word about you and Sandburg. Don’t worry. I just wondered why he wasn’t here any longer,” Provenza said.

“He’s out getting the Carter files so you two can look it over while we have dinner,” Jim explained.

“Good thinking,” Flynn acknowledged.

Blair walked in with the files and wondered what he missed. Jim looked pissed off. “Did I miss something fun?” Blair asked.

“Just Provenza pissing your partner off,” Flynn kidded.

“Same ole stuff?” Blair asked.

“It doesn’t matter. We’ll see to it that they get Rafe and Brown tomorrow,” Jim said.

Flynn said, “No, I like you guys. We’ll make things work if I have to kill Provenza to do it.”

Blair and Jim both had to laugh about that. Provenza didn’t think it was that funny, but he didn’t want to catch any flack from Chief Johnson when he got back either. He knew he had to shape up and shape up he would.

Blair handed the first file over to Flynn and the second one to Provenza. “These are the same files, but I figured you wouldn’t want to share the reading.”

“He’s testifying in a drug ring bust for the FBI? What the hell?” Provenza said.

“He helped them in their bust and got some of his time taken off because of it. The time he has to serve in California is another story. That’s up to your court systems,” Blair said.

“Boy, Fritz Howard would love taking on this case, wouldn’t he?” Flynn asked Provenza.

“Who is Howard?” Jim asked.

“Chief Brenda Johnson’s husband works for the FBI. He’s Agent Fritz Howard,” Flynn explained.

“That must be helpful sometimes, having the FBI so close,” Blair wondered.

“Sometimes, but sometimes it bites us in the ass,” Provenza said.

“I could believe that,” Jim said.

The waitress came over and they all ordered their food and their drinks.

“So tell us how you ever found Carter,” Provenza commented.

“We didn’t. That’s the best part, the FBI found him. But while they used our jail to hold him we ran his prints and found out about the open warrant in California and decided to let Chief Johnson know about him. She was very anxious to have him back in California as you can well imagine,” Jim divulged.

“Don’t you love when you don’t have to do the paperwork or the field work to find someone? I love when it falls in your lap. That doesn’t happen too often, especially in Los Angeles,” Provenza confessed.

“Well, it doesn’t happen too often here either,” Blair added.

Their dinner arrived and they all ate and talked about Miles Carter until Jim yawned.

“Hey, I’m supposed to be the old man here, why are you yawning?” Provenza asked.

“Because I haven’t slept in two days, that’s why,” Jim replied.

“Could you pick us up in the morning for court, so we can watch him from the back of the gallery?” Flynn inquired.

Blair said, “We’ll pick you both up at 8:00 sharp. Court starts at 8:30.”

“Okay, we’ll see you in the morning, then, “Flynn said as he got up to leave the table.

Provenza followed him and said, “See you in the morning, Sandburg and Ellison.”

“Good night, Provenza and Flynn,” Blair said as they walked out of the hotel.

~~~~~

The ride home was quiet. Blair knew Jim was tired, plus he didn’t want to bring up Provenza tonight. He wasn’t in the mood for an argument with Jim about who liked them and who didn’t.

So instead, they held hands and just listened to tunes on the radio all the way to the loft. It was a very enjoyable ride home and Blair loved holding hands with Jim. He wouldn’t want it to get around, but Jim made him feel safe all the time when he held his hand.

~~~~~

“They weren’t too bad, do you think?” Flynn asked Provenza when they got to their room.

“They’re ‘gay’, Flynn, how are we supposed to deal with that?”

“There are worse things in life then being gay, you know?” Flynn pointed out.

“I can’t imagine getting any respect at the bullpen when everyone knows what you do in bed,” Provenza said.

“Why would anyone know what anyone did in bed? That’s no one’s business,” Flynn said in Jim and Blair’s defense.

“Why do you like them so much? I swear you aren’t getting laid enough. Even men probably look good to you at this point,” Provenza teased.

“Maybe men do look good to me, have you ever thought about that?” Flynn asked before he knew what he had said.

“What the hell are you talking about, Andy? You don’t do guys,” Provenza reminded him.

“You don’t know what I do and don’t do. At any rate, it doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate the male form from time to time,” Flynn admitted.

“I’m getting you some dates as soon as we get home, Flynn.”

“Have you ever thought that maybe I’m looking for someone special?” Flynn asked.

“I’m taking a shower, this whole conversation has made me hot and stinky and not the good kind,” Provenza got up and walked into the bathroom.

What the hell is Flynn talking about? Since when has he started looking at men? And why didn’t he tell me about it before? Why didn’t he tell me so that I wouldn’t have kept saying the insulting things that I do?

Outside the bathroom, Flynn was hitting his head on the wall, over and over again. Provenza opened up the door and said, “Knock it off, Flynn.”

Flynn got undressed and slipped into one of the queen sized beds. He wondered why he had said those things to Provenza. Now he would never hear the end of it.

Provenza walked out of the bathroom wearing a tee shirt and boxers and slid into his bed. “The bathroom is all yours.”

Flynn got up and brushed his teeth and washed up, but didn’t take a shower. He was afraid he would have dreams of Louie while in the shower and embarrass both of them. He didn’t know why he was suddenly having thoughts about Provenza, but he couldn’t seem to shut his mind off when it came to his partner. He had been with a man before, but it was back in college. So he was a little rusty, to say the least. He needed to get control of the situation before he outed himself big time.

He walked out and slid into the bed again and pulled the covers up. “Goodnight, Provenza.”

“Goodnight, Flynn.”

~~~~~

Provenza was sucking Flynn’s cock and both of the men were having a good time, when Flynn woke up almost coming in his sleep. He rolled over on his stomach groaning and told his cock to settle down and finally got back to sleep again. Flynn was in sexual hell and he had brought it all on himself. Only a moron would fall in love with someone like Provenza.

~~~~~

The next morning, they both woke up on the wrong side of the bed. Provenza said the bed was too hard. Flynn just didn’t sleep much without sexual dreams. Lack of sleep was going to cause both of the men to be grouchy.

They got ready and went downstairs to wait for Ellison and Sandburg to pick them up.

As soon as they got in the SUV, Jim said, “Bad news.”

Flynn almost panicked and said, “What? What happened?”

“Carter refuses to fly, so the FBI informed us that he has to go by car or train. So you’re going to be stuck with us for a while. We’re going to have to drive to Los Angeles. I know you’re looking forward to being rid of us, but looks like you’re stuck with us for a road trip,” Jim explained.

“I don’t believe this? We can’t make him get on the plane?” Provenza asked quickly.

Blair said, “Didn’t you ever see Midnight Run with Robert DeNiro?”

“Yeah, I remember how the airline made him get a train ticket. You could put us all on a train,” Flynn suggested.

“No, Captain Banks said that we have to deliver him to Los Angeles,” Jim remarked.

“That Midnight Run was a funny damn movie,” Blair stated.

“I have to agree with you on that. It’s one of my favorites,” Flynn said.

“What are you guys nuts? We have to drive to Los Angeles because of what happened in a movie? I’ve never seen the movie and don’t think I want to,” Provenza grumbled.

“If the person doesn’t want to fly because of a fear, we can’t force him,” Jim said.

“If we knock him out, no one would know the difference,” Provenza said.

“He tried that in the movie, but it didn’t work,” Blair said.

“Again with the movie?” Provenza asked.

“I can’t help it, it’s a good movie. Maybe you should come over tonight and watch it with us,” Blair suggested.

“I’ll make dinner if you want to come over,” Jim offered.

“I was thinking about going out looking for a woman tonight,” Provenza said.

“Well, I would like to come over, if that’s all right with you. I could even spend the night if you don’t mind. That way Provenza would have to the room to himself,” Flynn believed.

“Sure, you’re always welcome at our place,” Blair answered before Jim had a chance to stop him.

“How long do you think we’re going to be in court?” Flynn asked.

“They think they might wrap it up in a day or two. So, looks like we’ll be on the road soon,” Jim said happily.

“Have you ever been to Los Angeles?” Flynn asked the men.

“I haven’t,” Blair answered.

“Me either,” Jim replied.

“We’ll show you some of the sights once we get Carter delivered to Chief Johnson,” Flynn said. “She’ll be chomping at the bit to have everything all signed sealed and delivered.”

Flynn looked at Provenza and asked, “So where are you having dinner tonight?”

“I guess I’ll go to Ellison and Sandburg’s place for dinner. There doesn’t really seem to be that much to do here,” Provenza grumbled.

“Oh no, you’ve done it now,” Jim teased.

“There are tons of things to do in our town. Are you interested in any of the arts? Like museum’s or plays?” Blair inquired.

“No,” Provenza answered without a thought.

"What about movies?” Blair asked

“No, if I wanted to see a movie, I’d watch it on my DVD player at home. I don’t go to theaters much,” Provenza stated.

“What about nude art galleries? There are two new ones in town and I’ve heard they are fantastic. You remind me of a person that would enjoy a good nude,” Blair joked, making Flynn start laughing.

“That would be something to check out. I could go for that. How about we check out the galleries after dinner?” Provenza suggested.

Jim smiled and said, “Sounds good to me. What type of food is your favorite?”

“I love Mexican food,” Provenza answered.

“My favorite is Italian,” Flynn said.

“Why don’t we just let Jim surprise us?” Blair suggested.

“Sounds good to me,” Provenza replied and Flynn smiled and nodded in agreement.

“What should we wear to your house and to the galleries?” Flynn asked.

“Jeans and polo shirt works for us. That’s what we’ll be wearing,” Blair answered.

“Okay, after court, you can drop us off at the hotel and then pick us back up later on in the evening,” Provenza decided.

“That’s fine with us,” Jim replied.

Jim pulled up into the parking lot of the court house and found a good spot for a change. Things were looking up, he decided.

Provenza and Flynn walked behind Jim and Blair to the court room and sat in the back of the gallery, hoping to go unnoticed. But when they brought Miles Carter in he noticed Flynn and Provenza right away and asked his lawyer something.

“He’s probably going to try and talk his way out of this,” Provenza said.

“He’s coming with us, even if I have to take him back dead. The Chief wouldn’t like us not bringing him back,” Flynn joked.

“I like that option. Why don’t we see if we can take him back in a body bag?” Provenza kidded.

The people in front of them turned around and shushed both men. Flynn and Provenza started to laugh softly until the Judge walked in. They decided they had better be good or Chief Johnson would kill them.

Jim and Blair sat on the other side of the gallery and Jim whispered to Blair, “They’re wishing they could take him home in a body bag.”

Blair started laughing and everyone in the court room turned and looked at him. He blushed and hoped the Judge wouldn’t say anything. It was Blair’s lucky day. The Judge glared at Blair, but that was all.

Flynn jabbed Provenza in the side when this was all happening, smiling to beat the band.

“I think I like Sandburg,” Provenza whispered.

“I knew you would,” Flynn answered just as softly.

The hearing went on most of the day. The four men went to lunch during the first recess and then the Judge called for recess at 3:00 until the next day. Provenza was thrilled. His butt had gone to sleep on these stinking benches.

They walked out to the hallway and waited for Jim and Blair. Jim walked out looking every bit as miserable as Provenza. “I hate being in court,” Jim grumbled.

“You’re just pissed off because your butt went to sleep,” Blair teased and Flynn laughed.

“What? Nobody else’s butt goes to sleep on those damn benches?” Jim questioned.

“Mine did,” Provenza answered quickly and then laughed along with Flynn.

Jim smiled at both of them and said, “We’ll drop you off at the hotel and you give us a call as soon as you’re ready to be picked up.”

“If you want to wait, I think we could change quickly and we could leave now,” Provenza replied.

“That’s fine, I just thought you might like to relax a little before you came over to our place,” Jim stated.

Flynn said, “I’m ready to get out of here and just go relax some where. We could stop and buy some beer for Provenza, right?”

Blair laughed and said, “You don’t have to stop, we always have beer. Do you mind Miller Genuine Draft? Why for just Provenza?”

Provenza said, “Is there any other kind? Andy has a chip and has been sober for ten years. I’m sorry, Flynn, should I have told them that?”

“That’s fantastic, Flynn. We’ve got soda’s of all kinds and lemonade. Jim likes to drink that too,” Blair offered.

They all smiled and drove over to the hotel to change their clothing.

When they got up to their room, both men started dressing for the evening. “Hey Louie, I noticed you’re getting to like Ellison and Sandburg.”

“Yeah, what’s not to like? They’re good cops and they don’t gross me out or anything,” Provenza answered.

“I really like them. I think we’ll have a nice time tonight. Maybe we should bring a bag for sleeping over if you have too much to drink? Flynn suggested.

“I think they have cabs in Cascade, Andy,” Provenza responded with a laugh.

“Right…” Flynn said blushing.

“Okay, let’s get this show on the road,” Provenza said as he walked out the door. Andy looked at the back of Provenza and noticed how nicely he filled his blue jeans out in the back as well as the front. Get your mind out of the gutter.

In the elevator, Flynn said, “Does it bother you that I’ve been with men before?”

“Why would it bother me? I’ve been with a guy. Mind you, it’s been years and years since those days, but I’ve been around the block a few times myself,” Provenza answered.

Flynn stood there with his mouth hanging open until Provenza pushed it shut, while laughing. “Flynn, you’re not the only one that notices men.”

They stepped out of the elevator smiling and Flynn was blushing.

Jim wondered what they had missed. It might have been something good. Hopefully, Provenza would loosen up with a few beers and talk to them about it.

~~~~~

At the loft:

“Blair is going to entertain you both while I go shopping for dinner,” Jim announced once they had arrived at their loft.

“Why don’t we just order pizza?” Flynn suggested.

“Would that work for everyone?” Jim asked.

“Works for me,” Provenza answered.

Blair said, “Let me run down to the bakery and see if she has fresh crème puffs for desert.”

“I love crème puffs,” Provenza said happily.

“I think everyone does,” Jim supposed.

Provenza sat down on the sofa and waited for Jim to get him a beer. Flynn on the other hand was hoping for a Dr. Pepper.

“I’ll get us some beer. Flynn, do you like Dr. Pepper?”

“Yes, Jim, I love Dr. Pepper. Thank you,” Flynn answered.

“Blair, you run and see about the crème puffs,” Jim said.

“Who are you calling a crème puff?” Blair teased and both Flynn and Provenza laughed along with them.

Blair walked out the door and Provenza said, “I just want to apologize now for anything and everything I’m going to say tonight, to embarrass myself. “

“I can’t get over how different you’re acting about me and Blair,” Jim said seriously.

“I can be a real dick, but I’ve been there, done that. So I know how hard it is to be a cop having a male/male relationship. I’m going to try and behave myself all night tonight, but that’s not a promise,” Provenza teased.

“So how many men have you been with Provenza?” Flynn asked honestly. Jim wanted to know too.

“Not that it’s anyone’s business, but I was in the army,” Provenza said laughing.

“What in the hell does that have to do with anything?” Flynn asked.

“I met some really nice guys while I was in the service. That’s when I discovered I liked both sexes,” Provenza explained.

Flynn took a big drink of his Dr. Pepper and said, “You could knock me over with a feather.”

“You get into feathers?” Jim joked.

Flynn blushed and Provenza said, “They’re so cute when they blush, aren’t they?”

“Yeah, I find it an immediate turn on when Blair blushes,” Jim admitted.

Flynn said, “Wait a moment. When did I lose control of this conversation?”

“Flynn, you never had control. As soon as you realize that, you’ll be much better off,” Provenza said.

Blair walked through the front door carrying a large white bakery box. He smiled at all of them and wondered what was going on. They all looked way too happy.

“Oh look, crème puffs,” Provenza teased Blair.

“Okay, what did I miss?” Blair asked.

Jim filled him on what was said so far and Blair blushed. “I told you, he was cute when he blushed.”

“Oh shut up,” Blair said laughing.

As they sat there and drank beer and Dr. Pepper, they began to find out they had a lot in common. For one thing, they loved to play poker. Jim said, “Come on, everyone let’s play poker.”

Blair said, “Just a moment. We were going to the galleries tonight. Remember?”

“Oh yeah, I forgot,” Jim said.

“If you don’t want to go anymore, we can play poker instead,” Blair assured them.

Provenza said, “Actually, let’s go check out the galleries and then we’ll order pizza when we get back.”

Blair beamed with happiness, because one of the shows that he knew of was an all male show. Blair thought they could all enjoy that. Man, this is turning out to be a very weird night.

Jim called a cab and they rode over to the first place and looked through the gallery quite quickly and Flynn wasn’t that impressed with it. It was mostly female nudes, so it wasn’t doing much for him. But the second place they went had all male nudes and they were stunning. Flynn walked by himself most of the time, just staring at the artistic visions this artist had come up with. They were called paper cuttings and they were beautiful. Hard to believe that someone had drawn it and then cut it out and posted in on another type of paper. Flynn was very impressed and wanted to buy something. He noticed the artist’s name was Pete Paulos and knew he was going to have to remember that name. He was from Reno, Nevada and this paper cutting he wanted to buy was called Reflection in the Mirror. Flynn didn’t care how much it was, he was going to buy it. He walked over and met the artist and asked about mailing the piece to Los Angeles and found out that it was no problem. The piece ended up costing him $300.00, but it was worth it to him.

Flynn caught up with Jim and Blair and said, “Have you seen Provenza?”

Blair smiled and said, “He’s looking at one he saw at the beginning of the show. I think he likes it well enough to buy it.”

“I bought one,” Flynn confessed.

“We’re thinking about one too. He’s very good isn’t he? He has a show in Reno that I saw once and I told him to have a show here now and then, so he does. He’s so nice. We have one of his pieces in our bedroom right now,” Blair said.

“He really is quite the talent. You know, I still can’t believe Provenza has been with guys before and I can’t believe he’s thinking of buying one of the pieces of art,” Flynn said somewhat shocked.

“Maybe there is hope, Flynn,” Blair declared.

“Maybe so, but I don’t know what his type is. I still might not be it,” Flynn replied.

They found Provenza as he was talking to the artist and Flynn noticed that the picture he had in mind, was something Flynn loved too. “I’m getting this, I’ve never seen a piece this nice before. Pete is going to mail it to my house,” Provenza said.

“Thank you for loving the art as much as I do,” Pete said as he walked over to the next couple that was ready to buy one.

All of them finished up the gallery and walked out to catch a cab. Jim said, “I’m glad this was a good stop for both of you. Like I said, we have one in our room already.”

“Wait a minute, I must have missed that,” Provenza teased.

Blair smiled and said, “You can see it when we get home.”

“I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m starving,” Flynn admitted.

“Same here,” Provenza said.

As soon as they got in the cab, Blair opened up his cell phone and called the pizza joint and ordered two large pizzas with everything. “Is that good for everyone?”

“Works for us,” Flynn answered.

Jim didn’t bother answering because he knew that Blair knew he loved any type of pizza, it didn’t matter what kind it was.

~~~~~

Once they arrived home and the pizza was delivered, they ate and drank beer and laughed and talked until about 1:00 a.m. Well, Blair and Flynn drank Dr. Pepper.

Jim finally said, “I don’t know about you guys, but I have to turn in if we’re going to be in court tomorrow at 8:30.”

“We need to call a cab,” Flynn said.

Blair called one and within moments, it was out front honking its horn.

“Thanks for coming and making the night so enjoyable,” Blair said at the door.

Jim thanked them for coming too and Flynn and Provenza walked down to the waiting cab and took off for the hotel.

Once in the cab, Flynn said, “So do you have a certain type?”

“Yeah, and you would fit in that type. But I have to tell you, I think we should go really slowly, because I don’t want to fuck anything up,” Provenza suggested.

“That works for me too, Louie.”

“Thanks, Andy.”

The rest of the ride over to the hotel was quiet and without incident.

When they arrived at the hotel, they walked up the stairs. Provenza said he was hoping he would sober up a little bit before they got in their room.

“Louie, can I ask you something?”

“Sure, what?” Provenza replied.

“Will you take me out when we get back to Los Angeles?” Flynn wondered.

“I would love to take you out on a date. I would love to take you on many dates. We’ll set one up as soon as we’re home and things are back to normal. I want to go slow,” Provenza said.

“I’m good with slow. In fact, I think it’s great that you’re willing to wait for me,” Flynn divulged.

“Of course, I’m willing to wait. We’re best friends. This is just the next logical step for two men that are as close as we are. It’s going to be great, but we can’t tell anyone in the bullpen,” Provenza said seriously.

“I know. We know how Chief Johnson took Daniels and Gabriel dating. So we have to keep this between us,” Flynn agreed.

“That’s exactly where it belongs, too,” Provenza added.

They walked into the room and took turns getting ready for bed. That night Andy Flynn realized he slept well because he now knew he had a chance with Provenza, instead of just dreaming about him. Both men ended up sleeping well.

~~~~~

The next day:

The FBI agent walked up to Jim and Blair and said something and Flynn was dying to know what was going on. Jim and Blair moved over to where Flynn and Provenza were sitting in the court room and Jim whispered, “They’re going to let us take him this afternoon. So we’ll be on our way as soon as they do.”

“This is great. We’ll still get to spend time with new friends, but at the same time get our man back to Dodge,” Provenza said.

Jim smiled and said, “Within two days, you’ll be back and wishing you had more time off in no time.”

They all sat and waited for the hearing to end and then Jim signed the paper for the release of Miles Carter into their hands. FBI seemed more than happy to be rid of him.

Jim called Simon. “Banks.”

“Simon, we’re going to be heading out to Los Angeles today. They’re releasing Carter into my custody today. So we’ll see that he gets to Los Angeles in one piece.”

“Good enough. Tell Chief Johnson that I hope to meet her some day. She was very easy to work with on this,” Simon stated.

“I’ll tell her, sir,” Jim said before he closed his cell phone.

~~~~~

On the road:

When Jim and Blair picked Provenza and Flynn up, Jim noticed the difference in the way Provenza was looking at Flynn. He had a look of longing on his face, so Jim knew nothing had happened. Flynn on the other hand, had a look of pure lust on his. Jim smiled and thought they were going to be good if they ever let it happen.

Blair said, “I’ve reserved rooms for us at a hotel for tonight and then we should be in Los Angeles tomorrow afternoon.”

“Hey Ellison, do you mind if I sit up front? I really do get car sick in the back seat,” Provenza said.

“Sure, that’s fine. Sandburg and Flynn can be in charge of Carter,” Jim figured.

“Oh goody,” Blair joked as he shoved Carter over towards Flynn and Flynn shoved Carter back.

“I don’t have to put up with this,” Carter whined.

“Yes, you do,” Jim bellowed from the front seat.

“Hey Ellison, do you want me to drive for awhile?” Flynn asked.

Blair burst out laughing and said, “Jim doesn’t like other people driving his vehicle.”

“That’s not true, Chief. I’ve let you drive my truck from time to time,” Jim reminded him.

“Just believe me, he’s not going to let anyone else drive,” Blair joked.

“So what exactly did Carter do in California?” Jim asked Provenza.

“I was framed, I tell ya,” Carter answered.

“Shut up or I’ll put tape over your mouth for the rest of the trip,” Flynn said and no one really believed he was joking.

Provenza decided to tell them what was going on. “He was with two other nice fellows when they shot and killed three police officers. We have them, but we need Carter to make sure that all of them pay.”

“Cop killers are the worst,” Blair almost whispered.

“I didn’t kill any cops. I told Chief Johnson that. She wouldn’t listen,” Carter pleaded.

“If you were with them, you are an accomplice. So just shut up,” Flynn reminded him.

Provenza turned from the front seat to the back and said, “Then why did the other two guys say you had something to do with it?”

“I’m being framed. I already said that,” Carter answered.

“I’ve got a good idea, why don’t we talk about our best cases for a while and change this subject,” Blair suggested.

Provenza said, “Oh I have one. There was a dead body in my garage one time and Flynn and I were going to see a game so we decided it could wait until we got back. I mean, he had tickets to the baseball game. Good tickets. Great seats. When we got back, the body was gone and we had to tell Chief Johnson about it. She wasn’t a happy camper.”

“You guys went to a game instead of calling the murder in?” Blair asked shocked.

“All right, it wasn’t our best moment. But Flynn’s car broke down right down the road, so we weren’t actually gone that long and she was already dead. He took pictures with his cell phone, so it was logged in, just not called in. It wasn’t like we needed an ambulance or anything,” Provenza explained.

“It all worked out in the end. We figured out everything we needed to with the help of Chief Johnson, so that was the main thing,” Flynn said, hoping they could change the subject.

“I was kidnapped once,” Blair said softly.

“No shit?” Provenza asked.

Jim said, “No shit. He was kidnapped by a serial killer.”

“Tell us about that,” Flynn said.

Blair began to tell them all about the case and everyone was listening, including Carter. There was something about Blair’s voice that everyone listened when he talked.

When Blair was done, Provenza said, “Do you have a favorite case, Ellison?”

Jim smiled and said, “I hung underneath a moving train once. That was pretty exciting. Not. We have a ton of stories to tell, but I think we could find other things to talk about with Carter in the car.”

“Hey, I was just getting into the stories. Don’t stop on my account,” Carter said.

The men changed the subject and decided to talk about Los Angeles. Flynn and Provenza took turns telling Jim and Blair all about it.

“I have to go to the bathroom,” Carter announced.

“Do you see a bathroom anywhere around here?” Provenza asked sarcastically.

“Well, I have to go unless you want me pissing my pants here in the back seat,” Carter warned.

Flynn said, “Pull over Ellison. I’ll cuff him to me so he’ll have one hand free to take care of business.”

Jim pulled over and Flynn undid one cuff and put it on his wrist and then got Carter out of the SUV. “Hurry it up, Carter, or I’ll just leave you cuffed to the back of the SUV,” Flynn said.

A few minutes later they got into the SUV and Flynn was very angry. “He pissed on my shoe. Provenza, do you believe it? He pissed on my shoe?”

“He’s a good shot then,” Provenza teased.

“Next time, you can cuff him to you. He can piss on your shoe,” Flynn whined.

Before long, they were in the town where they had the reservations made for that night. Jim found the hotel and parked and they all got out.

They got checked in and Ellison and Sandburg had Carter in their room. “That doesn’t seem fair that you have to keep him all night long in your room, Ellison,” Provenza said.

“We have to keep him with us until we hand him over to Chief Johnson. Our boss gave the order, we just follow those orders. It’ll be fine,” Jim assured him.

After dinner, they went up to their room to cuff Carter somewhere and Carter said, “Where am I going to go? Please don’t cuff me tonight.”

“Do I look like I have stupid written all over my face?” Jim asked as he cuffed Carter to the radiator.

“You can’t expect me to sleep here in the chair,” Carter complained.

“I not only can, I will,” Jim answered.

“I’m going to report you for this,” Carter yelled.

Blair was almost laughing at how pissed off Jim was having to deal with this jerk.

Jim slept in one bed, Blair slept in the other and Carter slept in the chair next to the radiator. Jim was listening all night long for the idiot to get loose, because he figured that would be about their luck, but morning came and Carter was still there.

They each showered, Carter having to be pulled out of said shower after 30 minutes and then they met Provenza and Flynn downstairs for breakfast.

“How did he behave last night?” Provenza asked.

“He was fine, slept like a baby,” Blair answered.

“No problems to report?” Flynn asked hopefully.

“None,” Jim replied.

“I have some problems to report. I had to sleep in a chair all night long and then this faggot pulled me out of my shower this morning,” Carter complained.

Jim looked like he wanted to kill him, but instead he said, “You can make all of the complaints you want. No one is going to listen.”

“You pulled him out of the shower?” Provenza asked, almost laughing.

“He was in there for over 30 minutes and I gave him fair warning. Three times, I warned him. He wasn’t listening, so I yanked him out,” Jim explained.

Flynn started laughing and said, “Carter, you’re lucky it wasn’t Provenza. He would have brought you down to breakfast with no clothes on. Hell, he wouldn’t have even dried you off.”

They all laughed, knowing Provenza wouldn’t have really done it. Or at least Jim didn’t think he would have really done it.

Carter just glared at all of them and vowed that he was going to make their life miserable. He didn’t realize that they were all miserable already.

~~~~~

They were all in the car once again and for a few moments it was quiet.

Flynn said, “Provenza tell them about your friend that changed sexes and didn’t tell you about it?”

“Shut up, Flynn, why bring him or her up? He’s or she’s a friend of mine. I don’t want to talk about him or her,” Provenza hollered.

“I got put in the trunk of a car once,” Blair said.

“You’re kidding. Boy oh boy, someone must have had to pay for that,” Provenza said.

“They did,” Jim answered, glaring at no one in particular.

“I made fun of the Chief one time because of her southern accent and she was behind me the entire time. No one told me she was there,” Provenza said.

“That was so damned funny too. Even she thought it was funny. Provenza has a way with her. Even when he drives her nuts, she likes him,” Flynn commented.

“She likes you too, Flynn, don’t even try and hide it. She didn’t at first, I have to admit, but once you came around to her side, she knew she had a friend,” Provenza said.

“She’s really great,” Flynn admitted.

“Our Captain is great too,” Blair confessed.

“Does he ever get on your case about the littlest things?” Provenza asked.

“Only once a day, at least,” Jim answered, smiling.

The rest of the drive was pretty ordinary. They had to stop three times for Carter to go to the bathroom, but other then that, they made good time to Los Angeles.

“You have to drive in this traffic every day?” Jim asked Provenza.

“You get used to it, Ellison. It’s easy once you know your way around. Right, Flynn?”

“Yeah, we don’t even notice how busy it is anymore. You just get used to what you have to do,” Flynn replied.

Provenza guided Jim to the station and told them what everything was as they passed it.

Jim drove up to the station and Provenza told him where to park. They got Carter ready and headed up to booking. Once he was booked and signed in, Jim turned to Provenza and Flynn and said, “Well, that’s all for us. We’re going to head back.”

“Why don’t you stay and meet everyone here and then have dinner with us,” Flynn asked.

Blair looked happy as he answered, “That would be great. I’d like to meet Lt. Tao.”

“Chief, we’re not here to socialize and how do you know about Lt. Tao?,” Jim reminded him.

“Flynn told me about everyone in Major Crimes. One more night isn’t going to kill anyone,” Blair argued.

“Fine,” Jim replied and looked irritated.

Flynn asked, “Do you ever win an argument with him?”

“Not really,” Jim said disgustedly.

“Deputy Chief Johnson is going to love you guys,” Provenza said as he pushed them towards the elevators.

“Oh goody,” Blair replied and meant it.

Jim just rolled his eyes and followed the rest of them.

They got upstairs and Sanchez pounded Provenza on the back and said, “Good job, bringing in the garbage. We missed you around here. It was too quiet.”

“Sanchez, this is Detective Ellison and Sandburg from Major Crimes in Cascade, Washington, Detective Ellison and Sandburg, this is Detective Julio Sanchez,” Provenza introduced them.

Jim and Blair both shook hands with the man and Jim was impressed with his hand shake. It was friendly, yet forceful at the same time. Jim wouldn’t want to come up against this man when he was mad.

“Glad to meet you, Sanchez,” Blair said.

Lt. Tao walked over and said, “I’m Lt. Tao, you must be Ellison and Sandburg. We’re heard some about you.”

“Good to meet you, Lt. Tao, it was probably all lies,” Jim teased.

Sgt. David Gabriel walked over and introduced himself and the men liked him immediately.

“Come and meet Deputy Chief Johnson,” Provenza said.

They followed Provenza and Flynn over to the office door and Provenza knocked.

They all heard a southern voice call out, “Come on in, Provenza and Flynn.”

“Chief, we wanted to introduce you to Detective Jim Ellison and Detective Blair Sandburg from the Cascade Police Department. If it’s all right with you, we’re going to take them to dinner tonight,” Provenza said.

“That’s a wonderful idea, Lt. Provenza. It’s very nice to meet you. Captain Banks was so easy to work with, you must tell him how much I appreciated all of his help,” Chief Johnson stated.

“He enjoyed working with you too,” Jim answered.

“Why don’t you show these kind men the town and take them out for dinner afterwards? I’ll see you tomorrow morning,” Chief Johnson said.

“Thank you, Chief,” Flynn answered.

Agent Howard popped his head in the door and said, “Oh I’m sorry, I didn’t realize you had anyone in here.”

“Come in, come in. This is Detective Sandburg and Ellison from Cascade, Washington. This is Agent Fritz Howard. They helped bring Carter back,” Brenda said.

Fritz shook hands with both men and said, “It’s very good to meet you and it’s nice to see Provenza and Flynn back where they belong.”

“We’re going to get out of your hair, Chief,” Provenza said as he pushed everyone out the door. Jim almost laughed.

“It was very nice meeting both of you men,” Chief Johnson said.

“Same here, Chief Johnson,” Jim replied.

“Maybe the next time we see everyone it won’t be business,” Blair said.

Provenza walked into the bullpen and said, “We’ve got the rest of the day off. So don’t call us.”

Again, Jim almost laughed. Provenza was a joker that was for sure.

Provenza stopped long enough to reserve a room for Jim and Blair for that night.

The rest of the day, the two men showed them Los Angeles, or at least what they could show them in a half of a day. Then they took them to Claim Jumper for dinner.

“We love Claim Jumper,” Blair said happily.

“Good, I’m glad to hear it,” Flynn answered.

They all had a nice dinner, talking about anything and everything and before long it was time for Jim and Blair to go to their hotel room. Flynn and Provenza dropped them off at the station house to pick up the SUV and they said their goodbyes, but not before they exchanged phone numbers and made a promise to come to LA some time when they didn’t have to be there for business.

Jim and Blair had directions to the hotel and they checked in and got settled.

“What do you think of Los Angeles?” Blair asked.

“Too big for me,” Jim answered.

“Same here, I’m glad we’re not from here.”

“Is it just me or are you tired tonight?” Jim wondered.

“Oh I’m tired, but I’m tired of having no sex with my main man,” Blair said laughing.

Jim pushed him onto the bed and showed him exactly what he had missed.

~~~~~

Provenza dropped Flynn off at his apartment and said, “See you tomorrow, Andy.”

“Why don’t you come in and have a beer. Just one,” Flynn invited.

“Just one, and then I have to get home. Why do you have beer in the fridge?,” Provenza wondered.

“For other people to drink. Just because I don’t drink doesn’t mean I can’t be a good host,” Andy answered.

Provenza sat in the living room and said, “Flynn, would you like to go to Claim Jumper tomorrow night for dinner?”

“That would be really nice. This would this be our official first date?” Flynn asked hopefully.

“That’s what it would be. We’re taking our time, Andy, so we’re going to spend more time dating then anything else to start with,” Provenza explained.

“Slow works for me, Louie. And we would be exclusive?,” Flynn answered.

“Of course, we would be exclusive. Now what about that beer?” Provenza asked.

Flynn smiled all the way into the kitchen. He just knew things were going to work out fine. Just the way they should.

The end

Back to Index

Notes: Thank you to Melodie for asking for this story. Thank you to Kelly for the beta.

The artist mentioned in this story is real and those are really his paper cuttings. He really is Pete Paulos and if anyone would like his email addy, I can send it to them. He sells pieces all the time. In fact, he has a small site on my website.