Disclaimer: This is fanfic, based on the show Once A Thief. Characters are property of Alliance. This story was written for fun, not profit.


by: Shadowscast

The elevator shuddered to a halt. The doors didn't open.

The two men inside waited patiently. The elevator was known to be temperamental. According to the usual course of events, it should start again momentarily.

A minute passed.

"The lift appears to be stuck," said Mr. Murphy.

"I never did like these contraptions," mused Mr. Camier. "They lack the dramatic elegance of the stairwell."

"Elegant, Mr. Camier? I will concede dramatic - there is no pursuit quite so thrilling as that which takes the prey up a spiral staircase to a roof from which there is no escape - but the Agency's stairwells are hardly elegant."

"On the contrary, Mr. Murphy. The elegance is in the simplicity of the form. The stairwell is a manifestation of the inclined plane - one of the six archetypal machines."

"I concede the point. But then, this very box in which we are trapped is operated by a pulley - another of your six."

"The wedge was always my favourite of the six." Mr. Camier looked thoughtfully at his umbrella, and then at the crack between the elevator doors. He shook his head.

"But you must admit," said Mr. Murphy with a slight smirk, "under the right circumstances, a good screw can have a pleasing effect."

Mr. Camier arched an eyebrow at Mr. Murphy, and then nodded. "But as to the matter at hand...." He opened the panel under the elevator buttons, and picked up the emergency phone. In a stage whisper he announced: "It rings."

"Hello, security," announced the voice on the phone. "Can I help you?"

"I do hope so," said Mr. Camier. "I am in elevator two, and it seems to be stuck."

"Hang in there, I'll get right on it," promised the voice.

Mr. Camier placed the phone gently back on its hook, and turned to face Mr. Murphy. "He'll get right on it," he said, enunciating each syllable mockingly.

"No doubt this device was constructed by the lowest bidder," said Mr. Murphy, wrinkling his nose and gazing around their cell.

"One might call that a weakness of the capitalist system," noted Mr. Camier as he prodded the corners of the elevator's ceiling with the tip of his umbrella. "But in our line of work, we exploit weakness, do we not?"

"I'm afraid you have lost me, Mr. Camier," said Mr. Murphy, looking perplexed.

"The security camera," Mr. Camier indicated it with his umbrella, "was also built by the lowest bidder, and has been 'on the blink,' as they say, for the past week. I overheard the Director complaining about it this morning."

"You don't say," said Mr. Murphy, wide-eyed.

"I do," Mr. Camier replied solemnly. "Come here, Mr. Murphy."

Mr. Murphy closed the distance between them in one step. He raised one hand and let his fingers brush the long black strands of Mr. Camier's hair.

Mr. Camier let go of his umbrella so that he might pull Mr. Murphy even closer to him. The umbrella tumbled to the floor. "Kiss me, Mr. Murphy," whispered Mr. Camier.

Mr. Murphy leaned in and let his lips touch those of Mr. Camier. His heart accelerated. Mr. Camier's lips yielded to the tip of Mr. Murphy's tongue.

They kissed with restrained and dignified passion.

With a grating clunk, the elevator started to move downwards. Mr. Murphy stepped away from Mr. Camier. Mr. Camier knelt to pick up his umbrella.

"Damn," said Mr. Murphy, ever so quietly.


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