Spoilers: Through the end of season 3
Characters: Nate, Sophie, Hardison, Parker, Eliot, and Maggie. Others to be introduced later.
Pairings: Nate/Sophie, mentions of past Maggie/Nate, possible Parker/Hardison
Summary: When the zombie apocalypse strikes, the team has to figure out how to face it.
Sophie sipped on her flute of champagne and smiled up at the mark. He was a floozy businessman who had recently allowed his company to fold; it was like Enron all over again, and he had gotten away with it. Sophie's eyes flickered over to where Nate was lounging at the bar. Well, he thought he had gotten away with it.
Panicked screaming overpowered the soft ministrations of the string quartet in the corner of the room, and Sophie locked eyes with Nate.
"Stay with the mark," he instructed, placing his drink on the bar. "Hardison, what do you have for me on the cameras?"
"A lot of people are running from other people," Hardison replied from where he was holed up in Nate's apartment with two empty bottles of orange soda on the floor. He opened a fresh bottle he had just pulled from the fridge. "It's hard to tell what's going on. But, whatever it is, it's headed straight for that party."
"Do you need me to help you out?" Eliot butted in. He was a few blocks over with Parker. They were in the middle of pulling the businessman's files and exposing all his dirty laundry. "Parker, are you almost done."
Parker gritted her teeth. "I'm working as fast as I can. I need another couple of minutes."
Nate shook his head. "Stay where you are. I think we can ride this out."
The mark turned to Sophie. "Do you hear that noise?"
"I'm sure it's nothing," she replied with a light laugh.
The doors to the ballroom burst open, and she pulled the mark out of the way as people surged inside. Nate cursed when he lost sight of Sophie, and he dove into the crowd to hunt her down.
"Nate, what's going on?" Eliot growled.
"Um, Eliot? You and Parker need to clear out, like, now," Hardison said, flipping through the security feeds for the office building. "The security guards were on their way up, but they've been attacked."
"I have no idea," Hardison replied. "But, I think whoever these crazies are, they're headed in your direction next. And, they just took out six armed guys with their bare hands. And teeth, I think."
Sophie kept tugging on the mark's arm to pull him away from the lump of frightened people. She tripped on the hem of her dress, and he tumbled with her to the ground.
"Bollocks," she huffed, shoving him to the side.
As she was attempting to stand up, someone pounced on top of the mark and tore into his neck, biting through skin and bone. She watched, horrified, and the man turned his attention to her, blood dripping down his chin. She screamed, and when hands grabbed her from behind, she struggled against the unwelcome restraint.
"Damn it, Sophie, it's me," Nate grumbled.
She stopped moving and craned her head around to glance at Nate. "Well, you were a bit late, weren't you?"
Nate rolled his eyes. "Hey, guys, the con is off. Find a safe place and stay there until we figure out what is going on."
"You want us to split up?" Eliot asked. He was running with Parker down the street to his car. "Why can't we just go back to your apartment and regroup?"
"Because we've got the same problem downstairs in the bar," Hardison volunteered. "Listen, Nate, the same crazies are tearing the place up down there, and there's no way any of you can make it through them."
"It's settled, then," Nate said as he and Sophie sidled to the nearest exit from the ballroom. "Eliot, you and Parker stay together. Hardison, stay where you are. Sophie and I will find somewhere to go."
"We could go to my warehouse. It's not much, but it will do for right now," Sophie offered. She followed Nate down the stairs and out the front door.
The street was in mass panic. People were running in all different directions, and crazed humans just like the ones taking over the ballroom were chasing down helpless victims and tearing into them like they were a buffet.
Nate pulled Sophie to his car, and he managed to navigate his way past the madness to get to an open stretch of road.
"Okay, how far away is this warehouse?" he asked.
She shrugged her shoulders. "About thirty miles, give or take some. You can go straight here."
He rolled his eyes. "How are the rest of you doing?"
"Parker and I are headed to her place right now," Eliot responded. "We should be fine for a couple of days."
"Hardison?" Nate asked.
Hardison stopped his furious typing to survey the couch and table against the door. "I've managed to barricade the door. And, it's locked, so I should be fine. I've been searching to see if this is happening anywhere else, and some weird shit is going down all over the world. The same problem: crazy people are in attack mode, and they're basically attempting to eat normal people."
"Turn here," Sophie interjected, pointing out a side road to Nate. "Sorry, Hardison. Go on."
"I don't have much else. All the news networks are in a panic. Their reporters are getting attacked, and one station has shut down completely because it was overrun by the crazies. I know this sounds insane, but I think we're dealing with zombies here."
"Get real, Hardison," Eliot snorted.
"Yeah, aren't zombies from the movies? Does this mean other made-up stuff is real?" Parker piped up. "Like, aliens?"
"I know it seems crazy, but, you guys saw them. It isn't normal for people to start eating other people."
"Hardison does have a point," Nate said as he swatted Sophie's hand away from his glove box. "Don't open that."
"Why?" Sophie replied. "Is there booze in it?"
"No, it's just…." He sighed when she opened the glove box and papers and other junk poured into her lap and the floorboard. "It has a lot of stuff in it."
"Hey, can we focus here?" Hardison interjected. "Zombies, people. This is serious stuff."
"Except that zombies aren't real," Eliot said.
"Can I drive?" Parker asked. When Eliot rolled his eyes at her, she crossed her arms over her chest and slumped down in her seat.
"I think the crazies out there eating people are pretty real," Hardison shot back.
"You know what, it's not really that important," Sophie said as she shoved the stuff in her lap to the floor of the car. She ignored Nate's sigh of disapproval and continued, "Eliot, let Hardison call them zombies. After all, they are acting like zombies. Now, Nate, do you have a plan?"
"Not yet," he mumbled. He cleared his throat. "Okay, here's what I need you all to do. Once you get to your destination, let me know. Other than that, I don't really have anything I need you all to do. Just stop all this bickering."
They all lapsed into silence, and Nate smiled. Sophie turned her head to look at him.
"You do know this quiet is only going to last for five minutes, right?"
When Hardison spoke up to protest Sophie's assessment, Nate groaned.
"Well, here we are," Sophie announced, climbing out of Nate's car to approach the line of desolate warehouses.
"It doesn't look very inviting," he said as he followed her.
"That's sort of the idea, Nate. I've stocked some supplies here, though, so we should be fine."
She punched in the key code and allowed Nate to pull the door up so she could step inside. He followed suit, allowing the door to drop back down. She edged her way around crates to the back of the warehouse.
"I think I have an air mattress back here," she called back to him.
"Why would you have that?"
"I don't have a safehouse nearby, so I decided it would be a good idea to capitalize on space I already had. After all, who would suspect me to hole up in a warehouse?" she replied, bending over a cardboard box. "Aha, here it is. Blow this up for me, will you?"
Nate caught the package that came flying at his face, and he crouched to the cement floor to open it. She continued to rummage around, mumbling to herself as she produced boxes of food, a case of bottled water, flashlights, and two handguns.
"Did you ever plan on using those guns?" he asked.
She turned around to face him. "Nate, you of all people should know that I not hesitate to shoot when I'm trying to get away. Oh, I've got some clothes for you."
He frowned. "Why do you have my clothes in your warehouse?"
"Never know when things might come in handy," she responded with a shrug of her shoulders. "How's that mattress coming?"
Nate set back to work, looking up to ask her a question, but the thought escaped him at the sight of her bare back.
"What are you doing?" he stammered out.
Sophie turned her head to smile at him. "I'm changing out of my dress. Is that all right with you?"
He opened and closed his mouth before saying, "Um, sure."
He returned his attention back to the air mattress and focused on making it blow itself up. When he finished filling it with air and had unhooked the small machine responsible for producing the air, he looked up to see Sophie standing over him with sheets and blankets in her arms.
"We're going to have to share a bed," she said slowly, chewing on her bottom lip. "Are you okay with that?"
He nodded his head. "Sure. Do you need any help with those?"
"Actually, I thought you should call Maggie."
"Have you forgotten about the crazy people out there? You need to make sure she's okay."
"Right." Nate stood up and pulled out his cell phone. "I should probably do that."As he moved to the other side of the warehouse, she rolled her eyes and started to make their bed up.