"No, I don't want to," Allison cried. She was sprawled against the door post like the cat that didn't want to go into the tub. Behind her was the Director of Personnel, the Marquis de Sod, trying to push her into the room.
"You specialized in 1980s TV shows; you go in here."
"But I don't want the A-Team. They don't have Mary Sues much; they mainly have Bad Slash. I can't do Bad Slash. I have the emotional maturity of a fifteen year old. I'm not even supposed to read that stuff."
"Neither are most people who write the stuff. Get in there." The daisy gave a final push showing surprising strength for something that bends when the wind blows. Allison flew into the room and landed on her shoulder. Now she officially was a protector of the plot in A-Team. You'd think there wouldn't be too much to ruin there plot wise.
"Hi." A voice from the other side of the room. Allison lifted her head so that she could see. Curled up on the sofa with a novelization of an SF series sat a black girl with straight, shoulder length hair. Allison put her head down again as she was getting cramps in her neck.
"I guess this domain comes with a partner," she said as she scrambled up. "Allison." She extended a hand. The girl looked her up and down before she extended her own hand.
"Tasmin. A-Team's not so bad. There's plenty of stuff that isn't slash, and most writers keep in mind that it is a comical series." Tasmin put her book away. "Why did you transfer here?"
"I was made to." Allison grabbed one of the desk chairs, pulled it closer and sat down. "The previous fandom I was working at ran out of Sues to pursue."
"Wow!" There was admiration in Tasmin's tone, though not as much in her face. "I never even thought that was possible."
"It was a small fandom. I may check in again occasionally. So, what is it you do here?"
Tasmin replied with a blank look. "We go in; we kill the Sue; we go out."
Allison nodded. The advantage of not having a partner was that you could ask stupid questions.
"You're in luck. Five minutes in the office and you can already start work." Tasmin went over to the console and started reading the intelligence report.
"Yeah, but what kind of luck." Allison peered over Tasmin's shoulder. "This story isn't finished yet. Shouldn't we at least wait for the author to finish it before we go in? Maybe she can still redeem herself."
Tasmin gave her a quizzical look. "Exactly what was that fandom you worked in before? Sues don't improve with age. Grab your gear. We're going in."
"I don't have any gear."
Tasmin gave her another odd look, turned away and shook her head. "They gave me a freaking amateur. I guess you can borrow some of my stuff." She opened a portal to the fic. "I do hope you know how a portal works."
"Yes, I have portaled into stories."
"Right, follow me then." Tasmin slung a duffel bag on her back and went through the portal. Allison followed suit.
"Where are we?" Allison asked.
"Read the Words." Tasmin pointed as she peered around the corner of a building.
Allison read the Words. "Well, the punctuation is pretty offensive. Other than that it looks like your basic A-Team plot."
"When was the last time you saw an A-Team episode?"
"I don't know. Years ago. You mean to say this is not an A-Team plot? I mean, with all the gun waving, and being mean without good explanation of motivation?"
"No, it's an A-Team plot. I was just wondering how well acquainted with the source material you are." Tasmin sighed. "Years ago, I guess that will have to do."
"By the way, what is a 'back set'?" Allison pointed at the Words.
"I think she meant back seat. You may add that to the charge list: offensive punctuation, bad spelling and just looking hateful when her boy-friend gets assaulted."
Allison searched her pockets for a scrap of paper and a pencil stub to write down the charges.
"C'mon. We're gonna meet the team now." Tasmin opened the portal with her remote activator and both agents stepped through.
They hunched over as they ran for a couple of piles of car tyres to hide behind. Technically, canon characters can't see PPC agents until pointed out by non-canon characters. Tasmin, however, was in the habit of stealth and that is a hard habit to break.
"What are they doing in here?" Allison asked looking at the Words.
The team was in a garage recruiting after a call to Murdock to get help.
"I have no idea," Tasmin replied. "But I guess they're getting ready for a mission to help out Murdock."
Murdock smiled at BA, but didn't reply to either of them. "My sister was married to a future soldier, but when Becky was ten her father was killed in the Vietnam War. She then had to take care of her mother who went into shock and died a year later. The poor child was left alone and I was her only family. Well I sent her to boarding school in Georgia where she used to live when her family was alive. She was very mature for her age and she asked me to not say anything to you. We have been getting closer since she graduated and has been visiting me a year ago. She is now living in the house that she lived in when she lived with her parents."
"Oah, the poor girl has had a sad childhood," Allison mocked. "Father dead, mother dead, uncle coo-coo." Allison whistled as she drew small circles with her index finger near her forehead.
"Shh, I want to hear."
Hannibal thought a bit, "Now what was her dilemma?"
"She told me that she has an older brother that was taken at child birth. He walked up to her door and told her everything. But just last night she called me and told me that that very night the man who took him kidnapped him. Hannibal, I really do want to help her."
Hannibal leaned forward and puffed on his cigar, "I guess we have a new mission," he said while smiling his corky smile, "Any family of Murdock's is a family of ours."
"Uh, why didn't Hannibal pick up on the inconsistency in that story? If Becky has an older brother, wouldn't that guy be Murdock's nephew?"
"Because the characters can only be as smart as the Sue lets them be. Write up the charge." Tasmin glanced at the Words. "I think we're about done here. Let's go to the hanger, I want to fly with the team this time."
Tasmin pushed open the hanger door and stared in awe at the plane it revealed. "This is what she means by a medium sized plane?" She walked over to the plane and padded it lovingly.
"Looks big enough for the team to me." Allison shrugged.
"Sure, it's big enough. But when I read medium sized I thought it was going to seat at least twenty." Tasmin walked around the plane and nearly drooled. "This is a Partenavia P.68. Six-seat, twin-engined, high-winged, monoplane. And you'll love this; it has two Allison turboprops."
Allison nodded. She was no more impressed by this plane than she would have been by a car, moped or lawn mower.
"No way is Murdock going to fly this baby to Georgia in seven hours without stopping to refuel. You may want to write that up."
"Can't," Allison replied. "Can't blame the Sue that in the story you find a plane that can't do what she says it does. She never said it was a Partena -- something. She said it was medium sized."
"Then write her up for not giving enough description so I had to make up a plane myself," Tasmin said impatiently. "Come to think of it, she also never gave a make on that car that the bad guys drove."
"She's a girl! She doesn't notice the make of a car."
"I'm a girl. I notice the make of cars."
"You're a PPC agent. That hardly qualifies as standard issue girl."
Tasmin glared at Allison and was about to say something sharp and witty when she heard a familiar engine noise.
"Shh, they're coming. C'mon, get on board. We can hide in the baggage space." Tasmin pushed Allison on board and closed the door of the plane. "And write her up for having Hannibal organize a plane."
Hannibal and Face loaded BA then their stuff onto the plane.
The two agents tried to make themselves comfortable among the luggage.
"Phh." Allison wiped some fake sweat of her forehead. "We came this close to being spotted."
"Canon can't see us," Tasmin said as she searched through her bag for her Canon Analysis Device. "Not until the Sue points us out."
"Are you sure? On my first mission the canon characters talked to me before the Sue had been able to point me out."
"Strange." Tasman pointed the Canon Analysis Device at Murdock.
[Murdock, male, canon, out of character 42.83%]
"Hey, this flight is going to last for seven hours. We're not going to be cramped up in here for seven hours, are we?" Allison anxiously asked thinking of airline legs and starvation.
"Of course not. This story is going to fast forward to the last fifteen minutes of the flight in a moment. You may want to brace yourself for that."
Tasmin's warning came not a moment too soon. Allison felt herself be flung forward by the sudden increase to warp speed. Just as sudden the plane slowed down to normal speed.
"I think I broke my nose." Allison carefully felt her nose.
"Don't be silly. This is the A-Team. At the most you get a slight scratch of something."
"I remember an episode where they were all in casts."
"Shh, now. The Words are starting again."
Murdock opened his eyes and looked at Face then the controls. He closed his eyes back, "I put it on auto-pilot," he said sleepily.
"Oh, she's going down for this one." Tasmin got a rather dangerous look in her eyes that made Allison glad she wasn't responsible for writing this story. "Murdock may be mad, but he would never be as irresponsible as to never check on the controls of the autopilot."
Allison scribbled down 'autopilot' as she was quickly running out of space on her scarp of paper. She made a mental note to bring a proper notebook next time.
A few moments later Murdock landed the plane on a small clearing. The team all got out. The two agents carefully looked out of the plane. The Sue was near so there was a risk of being spotted. Tasmin glanced the Words and muttered a few things that Allison made out to be hexes at the girl.
Becky slowly walked over to him and leaned again the van, "I'm in Georgia, but I don't know where you're at."
BA jumped out of the van and towered over her, "Who are you, lady," he yelled at her.
She seemed unaffected and calm, "That's my name." Hannibal and Face watched in amusement.
BA grew furious, but did nothing, "You are that niece of that fool Murdock ain't ya?"
"Why is she taunting him like that?" Allison asked.
"She's supposed to be her uncle's niece, isn't she?" Tasmin growled. "That's why they share the same character and sense of humor."
"Please, I don't share my character with any of my uncles."
"I'm glad to hear. Write that down."
"I can't, I ran out of paper."
Tasmin threw her a look. "You really haven't been working long in the Mary Sue Department, have you?"
Allison shrugged in reply. "Seeing as we ran out of paper, we might as well go nab her and charge her."
Tasmin narrowed her eyes at her. "I'm not going to miss a single charge. Write down, uh, mental note: helps A-Team unload their plane, because, I quote: 'she is not one to sit around.' Ugh, a helpful Sue. I'd like to help her."
"Yeah, yeah, all in good time. But after some more taunting of BA that van is going to pull out, and we're not going to be able to hitch a ride this time. I suggest you hit that remote activator and we take a portal to her house."
"You're right." Tasmin hit the button. "But I will get her for this."
The two agents sat against the fence in Becky's back yard, eating the rations Tasmin had brought. They were waiting for the action to kick back in. Allison decided on some small talk to pass the time and to get to know her partner.
"When I was four or five Hannibal used to be my favorite character. We would run around the playground shouting the tune and beat up invisible bad guys."
Tasmin rolled her eyes.
"But when I was a teen Murdock was my favorite character. 'I'm Bogey the bear, I'm covered with hair'." Allison sang.
"Shut up, you fool."
"I take it BA was your favorite character."
"No, shut up. Becky's back. Time for some more charges for you to memorizes," Tasmin said wickedly. "Read the Words."
He was goin to join to army so he could escape, but he never had the chance. The part about his being shot and kidnapped and the ransom is real and no lie. If they found out, and I know they already do, that we are engaged then they would use me to get the money and to hurt Trent.
"That's Becky talking. What's inconsistent in what she says?"
Allison replied with a quizzical look. "Her grammar?"
"She already is being used to get the money." Tasmin sighed. "Remember the first chapter? 'Make sure you bring the money to me by one week or your lover boy gets an added hole'?"
"I think I was writing something down then."
"Sheesh." Tasmin returned her attention to the Words. A story and a partner that were both not up to her quality standards were a bit too much for her to handle at the same time, patiently. "Mental note: all the Team members are being kind and caring when she's crying over her fiancé."
"Except BA. But Hannibal getting on his knees for her worries me."
"Because of his age, or because it seems out of character?"
Tasmin elbowed Allison in the ribs in reply. Allison fell over as the story suddenly sped up to warp speed again. Several hours passed in a few seconds, in which nothing happened other then that the Team got ready for an unknown mission.
"Sorry." Tasmin had landed on top of Allison and was now picking herself up. "I hadn't seen the time rift coming."
"It's dark. They're probably all getting ready for an early night's sleep." Allison picked herself up. "Please, tell me we have enough charges now? Let's kidnap her when she goes out to call her dogs in."
"I have a better idea. We wait."
Allison sighed. Another advantage to not having a partner: you didn't have to put up with someone else. She looked at the Words and saw that Becky was showing Face her bedroom.
Becky smiled, "I am not one to be girly."
Face began to walk in, "I'll bet." He sat on the bed which had red sheets.
"Ooh, ooh, can I say?" Allison clapped her hands in excitement.
"Go ahead," Tasmin allowed.
"Tart's boudoir," Allison said with pride and Tasmin rolled her eyes. An average of four new A-Team fics a week and a partner that was only good to be used as a human shield in the crossfire. Although, human shield? That thought cheered her right up. She gave Allison a happy smile that Allison found rather disconcerting. She stopped being cheerful and tried to get out of Tasmin's visual range.
Allison saw Becky at the back door letting the dogs back in. She sighed, this would have been a good opportunity to nab the Sue, but Tasmin had decided differently. She had more experience in this fandom, so Allison decided to follow her lead. At least for the first few missions. She looked at the Words again. Becky was slipping into bed.
She closed her eyes and fell into an instant sleep.
"Just add hot water and stir," Tasmin who had also been looking at the Words mocked. Allison rolled over laughing inaudibly. Tasmin gave her an odd look. Then nudged her in the side with her foot. "Pay attention. Something interesting is about to happen."
Allison sat up and saw two men sneak in through the back door.
"Who are they?" she whispered, knowing instinctively these men were not canon.
"They are making our job a little easier. They're taking the Sue and we will follow them and charge her."
"Sounds like a plan," Allison replied.
"Don't do that." Tasmin shook her head and started moving to the front of the house.
The two agents hid behind some shrubs and saw two men and a violently kicking girl slung over the shoulder of one of them leave through the window. They walked across the front porch roof and jumped down. Then they quickly headed for their car. A buick, Tasmin stated for the benefit of Allison. They pushed Becky into the back seat, got in front themselves and drove off.
"Too late. We can't follow them," Allison said.
"We don't have to. I know where they are going." Tasmin pointed at the Words.
Back upstairs, Hannibal walked around the room and saw a peace of paper by the foot of the bed. He knelt down and picked it up and saw that it was a business card. It read:
Club Bar 12:Where the fun finds you
"Won't the A-Team finds us there too?"
"Not to worry. We'll have about nine hours to get to the club and take out the Sue before the A-Team arrives. C'mon." Tasmin secured her duffel bag and started running.
In the alley behind Club Bar 12 Tasmin pulled a Beretta 92SB out of her duffel bag and screwed a silencer on. Though it was not yet dawn there was a man guarding the emergency exit carrying an Uzi. Tasmin felled him with one neat shot through the head. Allison was impressed.
The two agents went into the Club. Tasmin took out two further cronies of the bank robber before they found Becky and her fiancé Trent tied to two chairs in one of the storage rooms.
"Who are you?" Becky exclaimed.
"We're the P-Team," Allison said, and immediately regretted it.
"We're here for you," Tasmin said and point her gun at Trent. "Sorry, Trent, it's personal." She shot him through the head. Trent slung over the chair backwards. Becky screamed then gave the two agents an evil glare.
"What are you doing here?"
"We're Protectors of the Plot Continuum," Tasmin replied. "Read her her charges."
Allison fumbled for the scrap of paper in her pocket. She cleared her throat before she started reading out the charges based on the keywords written down. "Becky," she started. "Becky, do you have a last name?"
"Never mind that. Keep charging, I don't have all day."
"Oh, right. Becky, we hereby charge you with bad grammar, bad spelling and plain offensive punctuation. We charge you with being Murdock's niece and taking over his character including banter with BA. You know, you really shouldn't taunt someone who has flown all the way from LA to help you out."
"Just keep charging."
"We charge you with not paying attention to the make of cars or planes so that Tasmin had to make one up for herself. We charge you with having Murdock behave irresponsibly as a pilot, and with dumbing down Hannibal. We charge you with using red sheets. To sum it up, we charge with being a Mary Sue."
"Any witty last words?" Tasmin asked.
"You can't do this," Becky screamed.
"That's not very witty," Tasmin replied and shot Becky between the eyes.
"What do we do with all these bodies?" Allison asked.
"Just leave them here. This place is going to fold in on itself in a couple of minutes anyway." Tasmin put away the gun and got out the remote activator. "We better get out of here."
The two agents stepped trough the portal and flopped down on the sofa in their office.
"So what did you think of your first day in A-Team fanfiction?"
"It was a lot easier on the stomach then I would have guessed. Speaking of which, do you think the cafeteria here is serving something eatable?"
"I highly doubt it."