DISCLAIMER: Murder in Suburbia and its characters are the property of ITV. No infringement intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
THANKS: To Ann for the beta.
Scribbs reached for the remote control and turned off the television. She wasn't quite sure what the hell had been going on - besides overpaid macho men running around in shoulder pads - but she resented the hell out of the fact that her team had lost.
"They were robbed," she muttered.
Ash lifted a brow. "Who?"
"The Patriots," Scribbs explained, as if talking to a recalcitrant child. "They were robbed!"
With some reluctance, Ash put down her book and stared at the television screen. "The ones in the blue?" she guessed.
Scribbs scoffed. "Of course the ones in the blue."
"Of course," Ash echoed, the full force of her sarcasm lost on Scribbs, who was too busy drowning her sorrow with the last of the wine. "I thought you hated American football? I distinctly remember the phrase 'rugby for hairdressers' being used."
"Yeah, but I never said that was a bad thing." Scribbs was rather close to her hairdresser - at least until the fringe-incident - and he could bench-press an elephant. "They were winning, right up until the end," she continued, mistaking Ash's lack of fleeing for interest. "If they'd only managed to..." Her voice trailed off as her knowledge of American football terminology dwindled. "Robbed, I tell you."
Ash found a bookmark, and having reluctantly admitted that her chances of being left in peace were virtually non-existent, turned her full attention to her partner. "How much did you lose?"
"How much?" Ash asked again. "I know you're as interested in American football as I am in mud wrestling, so the only reason you'd force me to ignore all that wailing and hooting from the TV screen is if you had money riding on it." She crossed her arms and glared. "So, how much?"
Scribbs hated the fact she was so transparent. "Twenty quid."
"You bet twenty pounds on some stupid game the rules of which might as well be written in Klingon for all you know!"
"I got good odds." Scribbs looked around the flat, desperate to find something to derail Ash's train of thought. "New curtains?"
"No." There was a granite edge to Ash's voice that promised lonely nights spent freezing on the couch if Scribbs wasn't careful. "So, are you telling me I had to suffer through hours of total and utter boredom listening to grown men play their little games, just so you could lose money you could have used to take me out to dinner?"
When she put it like that, it didn't sound so good after all, but Scribbs wasn't going to be browbeaten. "I had to support my team!"
"The Patriots." She shrugged. "Go Pats!"
"Scribbs, do you really want me to ask you probing questions about 'your team' until you're forced to admit you'd never heard of them before the bet, or are you going to cut your losses and simply promise to make it up to me?"
"I'll make it up to you." Scribbs was no fool.
"Good." Standing, Ash reached for Scribbs' hand. "You can start right now."
As Ash led her into the bedroom, Scribbs let out a silent 'Go Pats!', before kicking off her shoes and tackling Ash onto the bed. Her team might have lost, but she had most definitely won.
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