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Ash looked at her watch and sighed. "Happy New Year," she grumbled, her breath creating a cloud in front of her face, and momentarily obscuring the view out the windscreen.
"Did you say something?" Scribbs piped up from the back of the observation vehicle, before scrambling over the seat and joining Ash in the cramped confines of the cab. "I couldn't hear properly 'cause of the noise from the pub."
The pub in question received a scowl of distaste from Ash before she once again banished its existence from her mind. "I said, Happy New Year."
"Already?" Scribbs checked her watch, to verify Ash's statement, a look of confusion momentarily marring her features. "That's odd."
"It happens every year, Scribbs."
"I don't mean that." Scribbs peered towards the pub, which was practically throbbing with every beat of the song. "I mean the pub." She looked up and down the street but couldn't see anything out of the ordinary. "They didn't do a countdown."
"So?" It might have been odd, even downright strange, but their job was to watch the jewellers, two doors away, not expend valuable brain power on working out why some drunk DJ hadn't slurred his countdown.
Scribbs had been all set to make her move the second the countdown started, but now the moment was gone, taking her excuse with it. "It's tradition," she mumbled.
"It's pointless." Ash snatched her clipboard off the floor and began making nonsensical amendments to her notes. "We're here to do a job, remember?"
"Talk about pointless." Scribbs had promised herself that she wouldn't let the year end without telling Ash how she felt, but as the months wore on, and her courage failed, she'd come to see New Year's Eve as her last chance. A chance she'd just blown, and all because some sweaty DJ had forgotten the most basic rule of New Year's Eve entertainment. "This is shit!"
Ash's lips thinned and her spine straightened. "I had a perfectly valid tip-off -"
"I'm not talking about that!" Scribbs interrupted. "I'm talking about us."
"What about us?"
"It's New Year's Eve, for God's sake, we should be in a dark corner somewhere, snogging the face off each other, not sitting in some smelly van arguing about countdowns." That's what they'd done the year before, when half a bottle of Archer's had bolstered her courage, and the year before that, now she thought about it.
Ash's eyes widened until she resembled a rabbit staring down an articulated lorry at midnight. "You never said." When Scribbs had volunteered to accompany her on the stakeout, rather than moan and groan as per usual, she'd assumed the other woman was eager to avoid their usual lack of discretion.
"That's 'cause we never talk about it!" Scribbs was angry, cold and hurt, which meant it was the absolute worse time to bring up her feelings. "I'm in love with you, although God knows why, because you are the most annoying, uptight, anal retentive -"
"Scribbs!" Ash threw her clipboard into the back. "Stop behaving like a two year old with ADHD and kiss me!"
Scribbs opened her mouth to argue, stopped, rewound the last two words in her brain, and smiled. "Five, four, three, two one," she chanted, before launching herself over the handbrake and proceeding to snog the face of her very willing partner.
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