The two of them strode into the station, leading the two still-groggy robbers. Ferdia handed the starling off to one of the officers, searching the nearby benches for the gang she had brought in earlier.
"If you're looking for the Manje gang, I booked 'em already," the officer said.
"Thanks, Bishop," she smiled. "Thought I was in trouble for that one."
"No, you're in trouble for taking the last available squad car. Not to mention nearly killing the mayor this morning," the old pigeon replied, seating the starling in a chair and securing the rat to one of the nearby benches.
"Nearly killing the mayor? I don't remember nearly ki--oh," she said, suddenly remembering the limo she'd just missed running off the road while chasing the bikers.
Sounds of a struggle echoed from the nearby hallway, and Ferdia went over to investigate the commotion. "Transferring inmates, Trev?" she called.
"YOU! You, you WITCH, you!" a furious female voice screamed. The pink-and purple-haired mouse from the theater lunged at her, stopped only by the green finch that had been escorting her. "You shot my Johny!" she shrieked.
"You killed my partner!" Ferdia shot back, hands balled into fists and anger burning in her eyes.
"I don't care! You hurt Johny! I'll kill ya!" she struggled in Trevor's grasp, lashing out at Ferdia. Giving the green finch a swift kick in the knees, she tore free and lunged at the bluebird.
With an angry, hawk-like squawk, Ferdia took half a step back and delivered a vicious roundhouse kick to the mouse's abdomen, sending her sprawling to the floor in pain. Her tailfeathers fanned behind her, she started toward the mouse....
....and was jerked to a halt as Squeaks grabbed her arm, shaking his head, 'no'. Glaring at him, she jerked her arm free and angrily stalked out of the room.
"What was that about?" Squeaks asked the finch as they hauled the whimpering mouse to her feet.
"What, nobody's thought to tell you? She lost her partner to these guys a couple weeks ago. Busted their drug ring as they were accepting a shipment on the docks near San Bernadino, without backup. The resulting gunfight was the closest thing San Bernardino's had to urban warfare. Her partner was an older guy, forty or fifty, and in no shape to be chasing punks on the street. He took a hit, and died in surgery. Ferdia's put partners in the hospital before, but she'd never lost one. She's taking it kind of hard." He bent over, addressing the handcuffed mouse, "and you knew that. You're lucky she didn't break any ribs," he said, leading her away.
After half an hour of searching, Squeaks finally located Ferdia. She was in the gym in the basement of the station, beating the stuffing out of an old punching bag. Still in uniform and still furious, she was concentrating too hard on the wildly-swinging bag to hear his approach.
"It's broken," Squeaks observed as he strode up. The metal ring meant to keep the bag from swinging too much was hanging loosely from the wall.
"I know," she replied, delivering several sharp punches and a powerful kick to the bag. "I broke it a while ago."
"When your partner died?"
She kicked the bag viciously. "They tell you about that?"
"Yep," he replied, catching the bag. Sand and bits of cotton poured from holes in its sides. She really was beating the stuffing out of it. "Want to spar?"
She put her hands on her hips. "Take a look at that bag. You don't want to spar with me."
"Hey, come on, I'm military. You won't hurt me."
"I'm gonna hold you to that," she said, backing onto the mats set aside for sparring matches. "'Cause I'm too mad to check my punches right now. You get first move."
He circled a bit, then threw a light punch, to get an idea of her strength and skill. She dodged, then dropped down and did a foot sweep, knocking him down. He was back up in an instant, as she backed away. "You want to talk about it?" he ventured.
"Talk about what?" She darted to his left and did a side-kick. He caught her foot; she rotated her leg until it was upright, then drew it back sharply and kicked again, breaking out of his hold. "About how I'm foolhardy? How I rush into things with no regards to safety? How I care more about stopping criminals than how much damage I'm about to cause? The only reason they don't fire me is because I'm the most effective member of this precinct and they know it. But they shouldn't make me endanger anybody's life but mine."
She charged him. He blocked her punch easily, only to be caught by the kick she followed up with. As she threw another punch, he ducked, caught her arm, spun her around, and pinned her arms behind her back. She stepped behind him, twisting free and knocking him off-balance before delivering another kick. Squeaks found himself on his back again. "You're good, for a civilian," he remarked.
"I'm not a civilian, I'm a cop," she replied.
"So am I," he said, rubbing his side and sitting up. She really was good for a 'civie'. Probably held a brown or black belt, too. "Look, we both took that 'serve and protect' oath. Risking our lives to uphold the law comes with the territory."
"Now you're talkin'!" she smiled, offering a hand and helping him up. "So, you don't think I'm a rash, destructive, obsessive, brazen maverick?"
He had to laugh at that. "No more than I am."
"Great," she said, eyes twinkling, "Come on, I've got reports to finish, and your shift probably ended hours ago." She headed for the door.
"Wait a minute. If my shift's over, shouldn't yours be over?" he caught up with her, following her out.
"Nah, I practically live here. Besides, when I actually bothered looking at some of those notices, I realized most of them are due in by Friday. I've got a couch in the office, I'll just spend the night here."
"Still got that laptop?"
"Give me some of your notes, and I'll help you get some of those reports done."
"Squeaks, do you have any idea how many reports I need to do?"
"If the amount of evidence in that room's any indication, I'd say...definitely more than you working alone can get done by Friday. Even if you do nothing but type all day...."
She thought about that. She had been bored out of her mind typing those reports during the day. The thought of doing it for the rest of the week and still not being done made her cringe. "All right. It'll be nice to have someone else working as late as I do for a change."
The two walked off toward their office, Ferdia giving Squeaks a quick run-through of how the chief expected reports to be formatted and listing several cases they needed to finish the reports on.
"Wow," Tyler remarked, watching them go.
"I hear you. A full day with her, and he still has enough energy to spar. Not to mention enough energy to volunteer to help her type up her reports." Casey said.
"Come on, you two, she's not so bad. And you shouldn't be eavesdropping," Bishop chided them. "Besides," he chuckled, "he's only been her partner since noon!"
"How long do you give him, Bish?" Tyler asked. The older bird was very good at predicting how long Ferdia's partners would last before she burned them out.
"I don't really know. They struck me as being a lot alike," he said thoughtfully. "She may finally have met her match."
"Great. No more worrying about unsolved cases, then. They'll take care of them, or die trying." Casey joked.
"How alike do you figure they are, Bish?" Tyler queried, watching the departing figures as something else occurred to him.
"Alike enough not to worry about reassigning either of them for quite some time," Bishop answered.
"Gentlemen, I propose a wager. If they are really so much alike, they'll be taking on, and solving, a huge amount of cases. They're bound to be stumped by one of them. And, if they're so alike -- and take it from me, I've seen how that mouse drives, I was his 'instructor' for the practical tests this morning -- they're bound to rack up a new high in damages. Therefore, I propose we place bets, for each of their cases, on whether or not they'll solve it and how much damage they'll do trying to solve it. We deposit the bets in an account, the kitty payable to them whenever they come up against a case they can't solve." Casey suggested.
" Great idea!" Trevor agreed, "Except, I think we need to add one more payable condition...."
The End (For Now)
Bob: What do you mean, "End"?!? I haven't done anything yet!Chapter 3 / Back to Car 54 Index / Back to Case Files
Bob, I told you, this was just for Ferdia and Squeaks.
Ferdia: It's in our contract.
Ferdie: Besides, you were mentioned.
Bob: I was on the phone at the very beginning! That doesn't count! ED was in this more than I was!
Iiwi: Get a grip, Bob. At least you were in the episode.
Ivan: Yeah, we weren't even hinted at!
Jennies: Come on, guys, I told you all when I started that this was going to be a "day in the life" type fic for Ferdia and Squeaks.
Squeaks: It was a pretty short day, you know...
Jennies: I don't want to hear it. I have other fics to write, and I'm horrendously behind on drawing Bob Kiwi: Private Eye. I don't remember mentioning your day was over in the fic, you know.
Squeaks: No, you just left us hanging there, thinking the last few paragraphs had accidentally been deleted.
Ferdia: Yeah, I want to know more about that bet!
Jennies: What bet?
Ferdie: So, what's our next assignment?
Jennies: You don't want to know.
Ferdia: You weren't up until 3am eating pixie stix again, were you?
Iiwi: AAAARG!! That means we're gonna have to do a-
Ivan: Don't say it!
Bob: A crossover! Whoopee!......Why's everybody lookin' at me all evil?....I like crossovers...
Iiwi: At least we'll all be in this one...
Jennies: (to audience) You see what I have to put up with? I can't win....