Shadow Unit


Teasers & Deleted Scenes

WARNING! This scene may contain spoilers for "A Handful of Dust"!

Dallas, TX, January 2001

That Tuesday, Brady didn't get off work until almost eight. When he let himself into Andre's condo, he found it full of the scent of minestrone. From the living room speakers, They Might Be Giants murmured something about thinking and not thinking.

As he closed and locked the door behind him, Andre emerged from the kitchen, barefoot, wearing his ratty jeans and with his dress shirt untucked.

"Have I ever told you how much you look like Steve Dallas when you do that?"

Andre raised his eyebrows. "Is that a complaint or a new kink I should know about? Also, what happened to, 'hi, sweetheart, how was your day?'"

Brady hadn't smiled since sometime around ten o'clock that morning, and god, it felt like his face cracking apart. "Andre, what would you do to me if I called you 'sweetheart'?"

"Feed you your nuts with a club soda chaser," Andre said without missing a beat.

"And that would be what happened to 'hi, sweetheart, how was your day.'"

Andre's eyes softened as he let the banter die. "Bad one?"

"Yeah," Brady said, as lightly as he could. He didn't want to dwell on what it was like to start the day with two bodies in a basement apartment, killed with a shotgun, and spend the rest of it traveling backward through their lives: despair, poverty, diagnosed inoperable tumor, fights, behavior changes, nine happily married years, met on a blind date. Rewind from ruin to happiness to be able to say, yes, it was definitely murder/suicide. Cause of death: failure to cope. So he just said, "Pretty bad."

"Well, you lose the hardware, and I'll pour you something alcoholic, and we can..." He considered Brady thoughtfully. "We can talk about something completely different until you stop trying to crack your molars there, cowboy."

"Shit," Brady said.

"Busted," Andre said. "Hurry up, I want to get you drunk." He went back into the kitchen and Brady proceeded down the hall to lock the Smith & Wesson in its gunsafe-away-from-home.