It was dusk when McCree finally made it to his destination. It was in one of the nicer areas of the city. The tallest building he could spot was only four stories high - a far cry from skyscrapers in the major business centre. Offices and store fronts lined the streets of the neighbourhood. Not very busy, but that may have been because it was after five, and people were probably home. He parked on the side of street, and killed the engine of his bike. Pulling off his helmet, he took a moment to look at the building across the street.
McCree wasn’t an expert on property value, but the small office was modern enough, and well kept on top of that. Someone gave enough of a shit to make sure it had a nice front, with maintained plant beds and benches on either side of the main entrance.
He snorted, and climbed off his bike. Hopefully, this would be worth it.
McCree stopped at the directory, buzzed the office he was looking for, and went inside when he heard the door click open. He shrugged off his leather jacket as he climbed the stairs - elevator under maintenance - to the third, and top, floor. He hooked a left, and went down to the end of the hall, running his hand through his hair to get rid of the helmet hair he knew he had.
He stopped in front of the door of a nice corner office, and read the sign.
“The door’s unlocked,” a voice said, muffled through the barrier.
The office was even nicer than the building, and while McCree knowledge of interior design was only a little stronger than his property value knowledge, he could tell the investigator was a man of taste, with a capital T. From the couch to the desk, all the decor subtly implied how wealthy this Shimada was, and…
McCree finally focused on the detective, and blinked. When he looked the man up originally, there hadn’t been any pictures. Which was a damn shame, to say the least. Maybe he was worried that he’d scare people off, because what the man wore only strengthened that fact that he had style and taste. McCree licked his bottom lip, and eyed the man up and down.
Shimada wasn’t paying attention to him, instead standing by the window, looking out it as the reds and purples of the sunset snuck through the cracks of the blinds. McCree realized he had a clear view of the street from where he was, maybe he was even looking at McCree’s bike. How long had Shimada been standing by the window?
Shimada turned to him, and held his gaze. It was a pointed look, and McCree suspected he had been there for awhile.
McCree hung up his jacket on the coat rack, and put his helmet on the ground. The hooks weren’t big enough to hold up his helmet safely. He gave the office another look around, noting the bookcases and the painting above the couch. Wealth and taste. Shimada had better be worth it, he thought as he sat down in a well cushioned and fancy chair.
Shimada stood behind his desk, but didn’t sit. A power move? Maybe McCree needed to stop analyzing everything so much, but his brain had been on overtime since he discovered his father was missing. Trying to think of the angles, of a solution, to find out why Gabe was gone without a warning was taxing his calm.
He did his best not to show it, relaxing in the chair.
He couldn’t show weakness.
“Pleasure t’meet you, Mr. Shimada.”
“It would be more pleasurable in less dire times, from what your phone call suggested. You want to hire me to find your mentor?”
“Yessir, I went t'see him last night, and he wasn’t in his home.”
Shimada gave him an appraising look. “And you chose not to go to the police because…”
Don’t trust them, McCree thought, a bitter one that refused to fade, even as time put a distance between him and his rebellious youth. Not that he wasn’t any rebellious now. Instead, he kept his mouth shut on that thought. He shrugged, cavalier. “I know what they’d say - that it ain't soon enough to pursue a missin’ person’s case, that he’s just gone somewhere, and didn’t bother t’tell me.”
“And you feel this is wrong.”
“They don’t know Reyes like I do, he keeps his appointments, and when he doesn’t, he makes sure people knows he can’t. He woulda told me somethin’.”
Shimada tilted his head to the side, and McCree found himself distracted for a split second by the yellow ribbon, and how the colours of the sunset play off of it. He shook his head. He was tired.
“So you picked me.”
“Y’had good reviews, and a reputation of gettin’ th'job done. Y’gotta be worth th'amount y’askin’, otherwise y’wouldn’t be able t'get away with it.”
Shimada smiled, just a bit, and nodded. “Walk me through what happened last night, and how you came to the conclusion that your mentor was missing.”
McCree took a deep breath, and launched into his explanation.
He told Shimada how he had gone to Gabe’s place the night before. Gabe’s husband, Jack, was out of town on business or a maneuver, and it had been awhile since they just sat down and had dinner.
From the outside, the house looked at it usually did - garden in full bloom, because after retirement, his father threw himself into whichever hobby he chose with all his focus and skill. The front porch light was on, and the door was locked. McCree used his key to get in, and found the house… Empty.
McCree called out, maybe Gabe was just in the bathroom, but as silence settled, McCree knew he wasn’t home. The doubts started then, before he quashed them down, and figured maybe Gabe had gone to the store to pick up something he forgot.
It was a weak excuse, because McCree knew that Gabe always prepared beforehand, and in a pinch, was great at being creative if he was missing an ingredient.
Still, it was better than nothing. McCree made his way to the kitchen, and saw the food being prepared on the countertop. Maybe he wasn’t as far off as he thought.
It took ten minutes of sitting at the kitchen island for the doubts to return. The closest supermarket wasn’t that far from Gabe’s house.
Another five minutes passed. Another ten. At the twenty minute mark, McCree grunted and stood up, pulling his phone out of his pocket and dialled Gabe’s number.
He heard the tinny sounds of Gabe’s ringtone, and followed the noise to the bathroom of all places. McCree didn’t know what to think about that, but after some snooping, he found an intact fingernail, caught under faucet handle. He stared at it for a few moments, and went back to the kitchen. Grabbing a small baggy, he put the fingernail inside. For… Evidence, or something. He didn’t know for sure, but it was weird. As he walked around the island, something cracked under his boot, and McCree froze.
Lifting his foot, he found small shards of glass, small enough that they hadn’t been noticeable without crouching down to look - or by stepping on them. On further inspection, there was also couscous between the small shards.
Right, Gabe kept a jar full of couscous on the kitchen counter, but… He stood back up, and looked to the corner of kitchen. There were the jars - rice, quinoa, among other things, but no couscous.
He found the missing jar and couscous in the garbage, along with blood.
He found some tongs, and used them to fish out one of the bigger shards of bloodied glass out from the garbage, and put that in another baggy.
There had been no blood on Gabe’s phone in the bathroom, and the first aid kit hadn’t been used. Gabe hated doctors, and hospitals by extension. He’d do anything in his power to avoid going to either, so the fact that Gabe wasn’t here wasn’t…
McCree checked the backdoor. It was unlocked. The porch was fine, along with Jack’s grill, but there was blood on the railing of the steps going down, and on the gate at the back fence. McCree followed the path until the end of the street, and… Nothing.
McCree knew he wasn’t shadowed when he came here. He made sure to change vehicles three times, as well as his clothes. He took a longer route, and made sure to wait at a few gas stops just to see if anyone lingered too long. He knew he wasn’t followed.
It didn’t keep his mind from suggesting maybe they found out where he went, invested in killing him this time despite all the roadblocks he put in their way.
He went back to Gabe’s house, and put away the food. He kept himself busy, before finally looking up and calling Shimada, agreeing to meet with him the next evening.
He didn’t tell Shimada, after his story was finished, how he called Jack, pretended he was with Gabe, but mentioned how the man seemed a little melancholy. Maybe it was because Jack was gone? Jack had snorted, but didn’t seem to imply that Gabe hadn’t been feeling well before he had left. McCree said his goodbyes, stating dinner was ready, and Jack knew how he was with phones at the table. He hung up, and stared at his phone, wondering why he didn’t bother telling Jack. Didn’t want to worry him, probably. Didn’t want him coming back early, possibly. McCree could handle this.
But Jack didn’t know that Gabe wasn’t there. Gabe hadn’t told Jack there was anything amiss.
Gabe was missing.
What he didn’t tell Shimada was how he had spent that time waiting for some sort of ransom call. Gabe had been a force to reckon with, and that hadn’t changed when he had become a private citizen. While it had been some years since he retired, the man had made enemies.
What he didn’t tell Shimada was how stressed he had been. His youth had been full of people disappearing suddenly off the streets, out of the gang, only to be found dead later. At least then, they knew. It wasn’t the same with the other who just never reappeared again, dead or alive.
But Gabe was strong. He wouldn’t just disappear without a fight. He just had to wait, and something would happen.
Something had to happen.
Nothing happened. No calls, no news, nothing. It was then McCree realized he needed help, a second opinion, and back up. He considered a few names he knew, but he couldn’t trust them with this. He needed an outsider, who was professional enough not to pry. He called Shimada after a quick search, looking for someone who was discreet, professional, and got results.
He crafted a quick story of being a former student of Gabe - which held up, Gabe had taught courses after he retired for a couple of years. It wasn’t the best, but it was all he could come up with in a short amount of time.
Shimada watched him, and nodded carefully. “You were very thorough.”
“Had t’be,” McCree said, and stood up. He walked over to his jacket, and fished out a few things. He approached the desk, and lay them flat on the top. The baggies, with the fingernail, the bloodied shard, even a toothpick with the blood from the railing and gate, as well as some of Gabe’s hair from his hairbrush. All things Hanzo had asked for over the phone. “Here y’go.”
Shimada nodded again. “So, you know my rate.”
They talked business, and their expectations. McCree wanted to be a part of the investigation the entire time, which Shimada agreed to rather easily, much to McCree’s surprise. As they continued to talk, McCree noticed something out of the corner of his right eye. Little flashes of blue light, like writhing, underneath Shimada’s left sleeve. It increased in frequency when suddenly two long noodle-like things phased out of his sleeve and crawled across the desk.
McCree wanted to look at them directly, but Shimada was maintaining eye contact, and he was acting as if nothing weird was happening. Maybe they weren’t supposed to be visible? It wouldn’t be the first time McCree saw something that wasn’t supposed to be there, not with this eye of his.
… The site he had found Shimada’s number on did make a reference to the supernatural. Some of the reviews suggested it, in that way that people didn’t quite believe their good luck, or how Shimada had quickly dealt with the problems - usually finding things, his expertise was in finding people and things. It wasn’t just because of the good reviews that McCree had picked him.
He had also been looking for someone similar to himself.
“You should get some rest,” Shimada said after they finished talking. McCree watched out of the corner of his eye as the noodles - dragons, they were small, long dragons - sniffled over his evidence.
“Y’sayin’ I don’t look good, Mr. Shimada?”
“You look very handsome, Mr. McCree,” Shimada said, which made McCree smile, giddy in the back of his mind. “And pardon me, but you’ve been mentally wandering during this conversation. I’ve had to regain your attention a few times, which is understandable given the circumstance. However, it will only get more intensive from here on out, especially considering you asked to accompany me. We’ll meet up again tomorrow, when we’re both well rested.” He looked to his fancy watch. “Meet me here tomorrow morning, at 10:30. We’ll start the investigation then. In the meantime, sleep, eat, shower. Try your best to relax.”
McCree nodded. As much as he didn’t want to wait, Shimada was right. He needed sleep. “I’ll see y'tomorrow then, Mr. Shimada. Thank y'for taking my case.”
“Of course,” Shimada said with a nod, and walked him to the door. While the investigator’s back was turned, McCree looked quickly at the dragons on the desk. They were harder to see straight on, looking like weird blue smudges in the light. He had a clearer view of them out of the corner of his eye.
Weird, but not the weirdest.
Shimada handed him his jacket and helmet, and saw him out.
Once McCree was on the street, he let out a long sigh, and felt some of the tension in his shoulders relax. He hired himself a competent, maybe even extraordinary, investigator. He had someone to watch his back. Someone he could, well. Probably trust. Shimada was getting paid to help him, so that would probably keep him trustworthy.
The most important thing was that McCree wasn’t alone now.
McCree climbed on his bike, and drove back his his apartment. He was ready for sleep, and was looking forward to the next night ahead.
In the back of his mind, a small voice whispered that it also helped that Shimada was easy on the eyes. It was probably his exhaustion talking.
It wasn’t his exhaustion talking.
Shimada looked just as good as he did yesterday, even without the fatigue clouding his mind. His pinstripe suit, bright blue tie, dark gloves. Everything about him was on point. McCree found him standing outside of his building when he drove up, standing by the door. He nodded to McCree when the man approached.
“If you’d like, you can leave your helmet with the security guard to pick up later, if you don’t want to carry it.”
“Sure,” McCree said, handing his helmet over, and watched as Shimada disappeared into the building. When he came back out, he gave McCree a long look, from head to toe. McCree watched him back, and smiled when the investigator finally met his eyes. That was a slow pan if he ever saw one. Hopefully he was as pleasing to the eye as Shimada was for him.
“You’re a bit dressed down for the place we’re going, but at least you have a cohesive style, which will keep you from getting kicked out. Follow me, Mr. McCree.”
McCree took a moment to look himself over - jeans, a red flannel shirt over top of a white t-shirt, and his leather jacket. Admittedly, it probably wasn’t anything to write home about in terms of wealth, but he thought he looked good in it.
… It was probably a good idea he had left his chaps at home.
“Y’didn’t warn me about a dress code, Mr. Shimada,” McCree’s long legs helped him catch up to Shimada easily, falling into step beside him.
“It wasn’t of consequence, not really. You look much better this morning, sleep well?”
McCree nodded, smiling lopsidedly. “I did, thank y’for askin’.”
Then he saw it again, just out of the corner of his eye. A little dragon face, popping its head through Shimada’s sleeve. It sniffed him a few times, before disappearing.
“So, where are we going?” McCree asked, pretending he hadn’t seen it. He looked to the sky instead, pleased to see the weather report’s threat of rain later this week hadn’t started yet. “I wasn’t expectin’ t'walk, either.”
“Y’seem th'type for a fancy car.”
“I do, but the restaurant we’re going to is close by.”
“Restaurant?” Was he taking him out to lunch? Fancy brunch? No, no. McCree, focus on the problem. Gabe was missing, and Shimada wouldn’t do that.
“Yes, it’s run by a friend of mine. She has several connections and informants.”
“... That’s a weird choice for a restauranteur.”
“Mr. McCree,” Shimada said, giving him a sidelong glance. “I’m sure you know that things aren’t always what they seem.”
McCree huffed out a nervous laugh, doing his best to keep up the appearance of a worried and concerned former student. “And my missing mentor seems like that sort of case?”
Shimada stopped abruptly, and McCree almost bumped into him. Glancing up, he saw the name of the restaurant.
“Y’gotta be shittin’ me. Y’friends with her?”
“You know about Ms. Lacroix? Interesting.”
“It’s kinda hard not t’hear something about her, no matter where y’go. Sometimes it’s about how great her restaurant is, and other times… Is it even open right now? Kinda early in the day, ain’t it?”
“Yes, this is one of those other times,” Shimada didn’t answer his other question verbally, he simply held open the door, and waved McCree in. “After you.”
McCree walked in, glancing around the front of the restaurant. If it hadn’t been for the tall mirror at the entrance, he wouldn’t have caught Shimada staring exactly at his ass as he walked in. McCree stopped, for half a second, a small hitch in his step at the realization, but it was still enough to have Shimada notice. The investigator looked up, and met his eyes through the glass.
Shimada smiled, razor sharp.
McCree quickly looked away. Had to focus on the task at hand.
If McCree thought Shimada’s office was fancy, Rêverie was opulent. He wished he had been warned about the dress code, feeling a little out of place. Not that he had anything he owned would let him pass as someone who came here often.
The maitre d’s sour look when he saw McCree told him all about that.
Shimada stepped up beside him, and smiled pleasantly at the maitre d’. All he had to say was his name, and the man’s face bloomed into a polite smile, and led them into the dining hall.
The restaurant was serving fancy brunch, to apparently a very select group of people. Barely half of the dining hall was full, and all of them were small parties.
They passed the dining hall, which mirrors seemed to play a very big part of the decor. When McCree checked, out of curiosity, Shimada was the picture of good social graces, and not looking at his ass again. He tried not to feel disappointed about that.
They were led to the back, where a there were several smaller rooms for private parties. The maitre d’ let them into one such rooms, and offered them menus before disappearing again.
“... Are we actually gonna get time t'eat?” McCree asked, opening the menu. His mind blanked for a moment, staring at the food offered, and the complete lack of price beside them. Ah, one of those restaurants.
“She’ll keep us waiting for a time, and I haven’t eaten breakfast. Have you?”
“Nope,” McCree said, looking through the menu. He stared at one item in particular for a few short seconds, before deciding, fuck it. “Oh! They have sausages. It’s been a long time since I’ve had one of those in my mouth.”
When McCree looked up from the menu, he saw Shimada giving him a sidelong glance. “That’s a shame, Mr. McCree.”
“Ain’t it just. Any suggestions on drinks?”
A waiter appeared swiftly, and took their orders -- Shimada had chosen something with eggs -- and mimosas. Apparently, they would need it when speaking with Ms. Lacroix. McCree hoped it was more as a gift than a need to get drunk, because they'd probably need a lot more than one to accomplish that.
The service was quick, but McCree suspected that was because they were two people, here specifically to see the owner, and the fact that they were in a private room. The sausage was fantastic, and he managed to make it through the meal with only making two or three more comments about it to Shimada.
Shimada seemed amused.
During their meal, McCree saw out of the corner of his eye, the light show again under Shimada’s sleeve. It grew brighter, until the tiny dragons phased through the clothing. They flew through the room, sniffing and exploring, stopping at three locations in the room. They hovered at each, transfixed, before sparking gently.
There was a faint smell of ozone in the air when they returned to Shimada’s arm.
Shimada placed his cutlery down, and delicately cleaned his mouth with his napkin. “About the case, Mr. McCree.”
“Yeah? Y’said it was weird or somethin’.”
Shimada leaned forward, resting his elbows on the table. “Let’s dispense with the niceties, I know you came to me because I have a certain skill set, so yes, it’s weird. It’s the evidence you gave me. Usually, I can track people with that. Blood is the strongest, fingernails and hair are also useful, but their potency fades faster with time.”
McCree wasn’t that sort of practitioner, all he had was his innate abilities and wits, but he knew the knowledge behind that craft. “Alright…”
“The blood is contaminated, and not just by the couscous and wood. Same with the fingernail, and hair. They aren’t entirely useless, there’s a unique…” Shimada paused. “Signature on all of them, but it’s something I haven’t encountered before.”
McCree hmmed. “I appreciate y’bein’ honest.”
“You aren’t paying me to lie to you,” Shimada said, sombre and serious.
McCree bit back the relieved laugh that threatened to come out. He shouldn’t make light of this, he shouldn’t feel this good about it. It was a sad state of affairs for his life when he was this happy over someone being honest and blunt with him. “I’m glad for it, either way. How do y'figure it’s contaminated?”
Shimada frowned. “It’s hard to explain. It’s your mentor’s, I can tell that much, but it’s not… All his? Or not all of him is there, a part of it. Something’s tacked on, like tar, and it’s very difficult to separate. Was he ill?”
“Not that I know of,” McCree said. Not that Jack suggested either. “So we’re here about that?”
“Yes. Ms. Lacroix will probably be able to help us.”
“If she can’t help us, she’ll point to someone who can.”
They spoke after that, about the case, about the restaurant, all the while McCree flirting with Shimada. He felt good about it, especially after he caught the investigator checking out his ass. He was also a little embarrassed about how easy it was to do it, but he was far from his usual stomping grounds, and Shimada was safe, as much as he was a stranger.
Shimada looked like he didn’t know exactly how to react to McCree’s blunt flirting at first, which didn’t make sense, the man was gorgeous. Who wouldn’t flirt with him? But Hanzo rallied, and shot back much better double entendres.
If McCree knew there was a man out there who could flirt with puns, he’d have laughed in their faces. That would have been before he met Shimada.
Their conversation quieted down when there was a knock at their door. Shimada stood, and opened the door, letting a tall, beautiful woman in. She was wearing an elegant, slinky dress, and had her hair done up, showing off the long column of her neck.
She was pale, but her most striking feature was her bright yellow eyes.
She and Shimada kissed each other’s cheeks, and he led her to one of the chairs, pulling it out for her. Once she was situated, he sat back down, and McCree moved one of the mimosas over to her.
“It’s so lovely to see you again, Hanzo,” she said, smiling at Shimada. “It’s been so long, to what do I owe the pleasure?”
“Amélie, this is my client, Mr. McCree.” She turned to look at him as Shimada spoke, and McCree wondered if she’d have him kiss her hand. She didn’t. “He’s looking for his missing mentor.”
“You picked an excellent detective, Mr. McCree. And I’m sorry to hear about your mentor, may I ask his name?”
“Gabriel Reyes,” McCree said, after weighing the pros and cons of telling her the truth. Sadly, if he wanted this as fast and efficient as possible, he couldn’t lie. Not to mention the fact that Gabe had built too much of a name for himself to give up one of his old cover names.
Lacroix breathed in sharply, not breaking eye contact. Her gaze almost seemed to burn, her lazer focus, like she was trying to strip away layers and see him through it all. McCree met her gaze steadily, never one to back down. “My, and how did Reyes become your mentor?”
“He was a teacher, awhile back, made a big impact on my life.” Every good story had a bit of truth in it, but he didn’t want anyone, even Shimada, to know how close Gabe and he actually were, which is why he had picked this cover in the first place. Thankfully, it had been a very long time since he and Gabe had been seen together -- any pictures any enemies could have taken were embarrassingly old. “We kept in touch, and meet for dinner every once and awhile when our schedules let it happen.”
Lacroix laughed, pretty and mocking. “And you hire Hanzo over an old teacher? I doubt that.”
“Amélie,” Shimada said, getting her attention again. “You understand why this is important, right?”
She sobered, and took a sip of her mimosa. “Of course, but why do you come to me?”
Shimada goes into his suit coat pockets, draped across the back of his chair, and pulls out three vials. The evidence McCree had brought, but in better containers. He could see each item in their vials, but there was something more. There was smoke, trapped in the vials, wafting off the evidence.
Lacroix reached out, and took the blood vial, and held in her hands. She almost looked as though she stopped breathing, staring intently at the vial in her hand. She gave it back to Shimada, and looked to McCree, then back to Shimada.
“I don’t know where the doctor is. I’ve made it a point not to,” she said, voice devoid of emotion. “However, I can give you the name of someone who does. Speak to Sombra, I think she’s currently keeping court at the Revelers.”
McCree tried not to frown. He was hoping to avoid Sombra.
Shimada nodded. “Thank you, Amélie.”
Just that, Lacroix smiled, her brief lack of emotion gone as quickly as it came. “You’re welcome, Hanzo. And please, make sure to visit for more than just business. Also, I must insist, but please stop destroying my bugs.”
“I enjoy a private conversation, Amélie.”
“You know I would delete any recording of you, Hanzo.”
Shimada smiled at her politely. Given the reputation Lacroix had made, McCree also doubted the sincerity of that statement.
She looked to McCree. “I wish you luck, Mr. McCree.”
With that, she stood, and they followed suit. Shimada walked her to the door, where they traded kisses again, McCree feeling almost out of place, before they parted ways. Lacroix walked away, while Shimada led McCree to the front.
“It’s taken care of,” Shimada said, like it wasn’t a thing. Which it wasn’t, McCree had to remind himself.
“So,” McCree glanced around the street -- their brunch had taken considerably longer than expected. “What’s the plan?”
“Return to my office, and plan our next move.”
“Bar’s not open right now, I take it?”
Shimada leaned against the front of his desk, while McCree took one of the fancy seat in front of him. The other man shook his head. “I know that bar, it may be a dive, but it doesn’t open for another few hours. Which is fine. It’s not as though Sombra’s known for leaving her locations until she’s ready to pull up roots.”
McCree couldn’t quite hide the twitch of his face at the mention of Sombra. Shimada raised an eyebrow.
“Know of her?”
“Same way you know of Lacroix?”
“Sorta. Don’t wanna know Sombra, but she’s known for wormin’ her way into people’s lives. Know she also likes t’trade for info. At least Lacroix was nice enough t’give us what she did without a price.”
Shimada shook his head. “Had we gotten the location of whoever she didn’t like, we’d have paid a lot more. As it was, the meal was more than enough to cover what we received.” He smiled, lopsidedly. “Lacroix would have loved to have something over me, believe me.”
McCree remembered the way Lacroix spoke to Shimada, and Shimada's careful disengagement. Oh, he kissed her cheek, but he didn’t touch her anymore than necessary, and kept his distance. Polite, but firm.
McCree wondered if that was how Shimada was with everyone, or just people who wanted something from him.
“I’m sure we can come up with something to convince her. Even she’s swayed by money.”
McCree found that he was comfortable, though, sitting here in the office, talking with Hanzo. Comfortable, and… Teasing. A person would have to be dead if they couldn’t tell that Detective Shimada was a handsome man, but he was sure even the dead would notice. His sharp cheekbones, his broad shoulders, his arms, the way he carried himself… McCree could go on. Hell, the way he dressed just completed the package. The waistcoat that showed off the shape of his torso, the gloves, even the watch just did it for McCree.
The package was fantastic.
McCree dragged his gaze away from Shimada’s crotch, and smiled at the investigator as he spoke. A small, benign smile as he slouched further in the chair, spreading his legs just a little bit wider as he went. The little game he had been playing, waiting to see how long Shimada would notice, how long until Hanzo would comment.
Their flirting through brunch, the look at his ass, all signs pointed to there being something there. McCree just wanted to see how far he could push it.
He took a slow drag of his cigarillo, nodding to what Shimada suggested -- that they could wait here until it was time. “Yeah, I can get behind that. Not like I've got anythin' else right now.”
Shimada paused, and gave McCree a look.
“An interesting choice of words there, McCree.”
“Oh?” McCree asked, slouching just a bit further, spreading his legs just a little wider.
“Yes, it’s been an ongoing thing throughout the meal, where you slip in little double entendres.” Shimada leaned back against his desk, tapping his fingers against the edge. “Or single entendres.”
“Aw, I wouldn’t jerk y’around like that, Mr. Shimada.”
“And there we are again.” Shimada said, but he was smiling.
McCree smiled back, and oh so slowly wrapped his lips around lips around his cigarillo, inhaling long and slow, and blowing it out. All the while maintaining eye contact.
Shimada blinked slowly, watching him, and let his gaze wander. Down McCree’s chest, where his shirt collar was open to reveal his collarbone, to his belt, to his boots, then back to where his legs were spread wide open.
So he might be presenting a little, but McCree wanted to see what Hanzo would do.
“What should I do with you, Mr. McCree,” Shimada murmured, stepping away from his desk and approaching McCree. Hanzo stopped when he stood just in front of McCree.
“Oh, I dunno, I’m open to any suggestion y’make, Mr. Shimada.”
Shimada gave McCree an appraising look, and stepped closer, in between McCree’s spread legs. He lifted his own leg, and pressed his knee gently against McCree’s crotch. “Sit up, just a bit more.”
McCree scrambled back a bit, just as Shimada asked, and Shimada’s knee followed, until it rested on the seat of the chair. It still pressed gently against his crotch, and didn’t move.
Now, McCree would be lying if he said he hadn’t been a bit turned on earlier, but the small buzz grew exponentially. He could feel himself getting hard just at the sight of Shimada being this close, which either was a testament to Shimada, how long it had been since his last sexual encounter, or just how into this he was. Or all three, which was probably the real answer.
He tried not to let any of it show on his face.
Shimada looked down at him, and McCree took another drag of his cigarillo just to keep himself from biting his lip at the sight.
“Well?” Shimada asked.
“Well what, Mr. Shimada?”
Shimada leaned forward, and the press of his knee wasn’t so gentle. It was a solid knee, pressed firmly against his crotch. McCree’s hips gave a little involuntary jerk against it, seeking pressure, grinding his dick against Shimada’s well tailored thigh.
Shimada glanced down at him, leaning in further, and murmured against McCree’s ear. “There’s no need to stop.” He bit McCree’s earlobe, and pressed his knee against McCree’s crotch even harder, for emphasis.
McCree huffed a quietly laugh, and put out his cigarillo on his metal palm. Best to avoid any fire hazards. He stuffed it away in his shirt pocket after making sure it wasn’t smouldering, and turned to Hanzo. “Darlin’...”
He reached out, putting his flesh hand on the back of Shimada’s neck and dragging him forward. He pressed a hard kiss to the other man’s mouth, and started grinding in earnest on Shimada’s leg.
Shim-- Hanzo, McCree could call him Hanzo, at least in his head, took control of the kiss. He took McCree’s face in his hands and tilting his head back, stretching out the long line of McCree’s body. He leaned in even more, curling over McCree in the chair, offering a sturdy length of leg to use. Hanzo bit McCree’s bottom lip, and pulled it away from McCree’s mouth slowly.
McCree moaned loudly, and ground harder. Hanzo moved on from his mouth to his neck, littering it with kisses and bites. McCree tilted his head back, giving him as much access as he possibly could.
His dick was hard, trapped and straining in the confines of his pants. McCree huffed, and reached forward, only for Hanzo to grab his wrists, and press them against the arms of the chair. Hanzo bit at the junction of McCree’s neck and shoulder sharply - a warning.
McCree groaned, and threw his head back. His hips lifting off the seat, pressing his hard length against the equally hard line of Hanzo’s thigh, and holding it for several seconds, before settling back down into the rhythm he had earlier. He flexed his hands, before grabbing on to the armrests. All the better for leverage.
Hanzo moved down McCree’s neck, nosing at the collar of his shirt, tugging at it with his teeth to open it further. McCree always wore it with a few of the top buttons undone, so he knew Hanzo had a pretty good view of his hairy chest, especially with the angle Hanzo had over top of him. Hanzo worked his mouth along McCree’s collarbone, and McCree rolled his head back as Hanzo went. The other man pressed a kiss to McCree’s Adam’s Apple, and moved to the other side of his neck.
It wasn’t enough, McCree groaned. The friction wasn’t enough, the lavish attention Hanzo was giving to his neck, collarbone, and face wasn’t enough. His pants were too tight, there was no breathing room, he needed… He needed…
Hanzo’s hand moved from McCree’s flesh hand to the back of the chair, and there was his low, sultry voice again in his ear, lips brushing against it gently as he spoke. “Take your dick out.” It wasn’t a question, or a request, it was a command.
McCree’s hand flew to his belt, and unhooked that one handed. He had his chin on chest, looking down as he undid the button of his jeans, breathing heavily in anticipation. He saw, out of the corner of his eye, Hanzo watching his hand too, as McCree pulled down his fly. He was slow, and careful, not just because he wanted to give Hanzo more of a show, but also so he didn’t catch the zipper on anything. It was both a blessing and a curse that he had gone commando today.
McCree pulled his pants open, and reached in. His dick was slick, leaking precum the whole time it was trapped inside his pants, making a mess of the inside. Goddamn, was there a big damp spot on the outside he never noticed? Something… Something to worry about later.
McCree pulled his dick out, wiggling his pants down a little further so the teeth of his zipper didn’t bite into anything important, and gave himself a nice long stroke, making use of the precum that was already there. He breathed out a long sigh of relief, tilting his head back and smiling at Hanzo.
Hanzo, who stared at McCree’s dick a few seconds longer, and met his eyes. The hand on the back of the chair went to McCree’s shoulder, slowly down his arm, and wrapped around his wrist. With a little applied pressure, Hanzo made McCreet let go of his dick, and moved his arm back to the arm of the chair.
“Y’gotta be --” McCree cut himself off, and laughed. No, Hanzo wouldn’t be kidding him. Not now.
That said, Hanzo’s pants felt amazing against his dick. They were of a much nicer make than McCree’s denim jeans, and it was mesmerizing to watch as his ruddy red dick brushed against them, spreading the precum. The pants, for all their fine make, were much more susceptible to it, getting damp and shiny as McCree’s dick ground against Hanzo’s thigh.
McCree bit his lip, sure he was red, given how hot his face felt, and let his gaze wander up from his dick. It finally settled on the tent in Hanzo’s pants. McCree felt a perverse sense of joy - or a proud sense - no reason for it to be perverse, in seeing it there. For all of Hanzo’s iron grip on his arms, or the strong length of his thigh and knee, which hadn’t moved from its spot on the chair, he was affected.
Also, while Hanzo’s pants were definitely a better make than his own, they weren’t as thick. McCree saw the damp spot starting to form.
McCree tossed his head back, and met Hanzo’s eyes, hips still moving. “Lemme… Lemme take care of you.”
Hanzo looked down at him, and cocked an eyebrow.
McCree knew a signal when he saw one. Time to bargain. He flexed his flesh hand, calling Hanzo’s attention to it. “I really wanna suck your dick. Lemme finish, and I’ll take real good care of you.” McCree licked his lips, and couldn’t help but grin when he saw Hanzo track the movement of his tongue. “Please, Mr. Shimada. Hanzo, please.”
Hanzo let go of McCree’s wrist, holding on to the arm of the chair under it instead. It was a good as sign as any, and McCree’s hand was on his dick in less than a second flat. He was sloppy, with no real rhythm, fucking into his fist. He made a point to keep brushing his dickhead against Hanzo’s pants, ruining them became a point of fixation for McCree. They were so nice, much like how Hanzo was dressed in general - pristine and proper, not a hair out of place, and all too perfect. He wanted to sully it a bit, mess him up. It thrilled him that Hanzo was letting it happen, having made no move to stop him the entire time.
Hanzo leaned forward, returning to McCree’s neck. He bit down, hard and high up on the column of McCree’s neck. McCree knew his neck and chest were littered with marks, only a handful of them he’d be able to hide with his shirt collar, but this last one would definitely impossible.
That was what made McCree come in the end, between his hand and Hanzo sucking on the hickey, making sure it stayed. He came all over Hanzo’s pinstripe pants, head thrown back and moaning Hanzo’s name.
McCree blinked a few times, slowly, as he felt Hanzo pull his knee away finally. He lifted his head to see Hanzo standing before him, a small, satisfied smile on his face.
“Need a few moments?” Hanzo asked, maybe a little more than smug for someone with a tent and come on his nice slacks.
McCree sat up, grunting, and tucked himself away, but didn’t bother zipping or doing his belt back up. He scooted towards the edge of the seat instead, keeping his legs wide apart so Hanzo could stand between them easily.
Once he was comfortable, McCree reached forward, resting his hands on Hanzo’s belt, just over the tent. He flicked it with his thumb a few times, before looking up to Hanzo. “Ready for me t’blow your mind, sweetheart?”
“I’m always prepared,” Hanzo said, which wasn’t necessarily dirty talk, or rather the weirdest dirty talk he’s ever heard. But, McCree did love the challenge Hanzo presented.
He undid Hanzo’s belt, and discovered that the other man didn’t have a zipper for a fly, instead there were buttons. Not what McCree was used to seeing, but not a problem. Once those were undone, McCree pulled Hanzo’s pants down carefully. While he may have been commando today, Hanzo was not. Dark blue boxer briefs, tasteful and elegant as the rest of Hanzo, were damp on the front. McCree thought about mouthing Hanzo’s dick through his boxers, making it even more damp. Maybe if he had more time, he could add a little romance, but now wasn’t it.
Instead, he pulled the boxers down too, revealing Hanzo’s cock. It was hard, the head shiny and peeking out from the foreskin. McCree played with the skin, rolling it back, and leaned forward. He bypassed the head, and mouthed the base, before dragging his tongue back up to the top along the underside of Hanzo’s cock. Then, he licked the head, running his tongue along the slit.
He felt Hanzo’s hands wind into his hair, and felt the insistent pressure to take more of Hanzo’s dick in his mouth. McCree grinned, and opened his mouth further.
McCree set the pace, however, so he guessed Hanzo was serious about letting McCree blow his mind. As much as the man probably wanted to take control - if how he pulled on McCree’s hair every so often, either to pull him off or push him further - he was willing to let McCree do what he promised.
McCree licked the head, sucked on the underside, and took it into his mouth. Hanzo tightened his grip then, and breathed carefully out through his nose, but didn’t budge. McCree chuckled, low and muffled around his prize, and bobbed. He took Hanzo even deeper each time, coming up for breath every so often, if anything to admire the spit and precum slick dick in front of him. That is, until he took Hanzo so deep that McCree could press his nose against Hanzo’s pubic hair.
Hanzo’s hands in his hair were nearly pulling it out at that point, and he groaned loudly.
McCree chuckled again, definitely awkward and difficult with his mouth full, but nobody had said that McCree wasn’t talented.
It wasn’t much longer after that, between sliding off and his descent, faster this time, back to the base of Hanzo’s dick. He got a warning tap on his cheek, and McCree pulled off, taking Hanzo’s dick in hand, and stroking it while holding the head just on his lips.
Hanzo came with a sigh, and a whisper of his name, looking down at him as McCree swallowed and licked him clean.
“So?” McCree said, being a polite partner and tucking Hanzo back into his pants, even buttoning them back up again. He patted Hanzo’s crotch, and leaned back again, spreading his legs like that hadn’t been the instigator in all of this. “Did I blow your mind?”
Hanzo laughed, low and quiet. “You did.”
McCree grinned, and ran his tongue along his teeth.
“Perhaps,” Hanzo said, challenging. “You would be interested in testing this further, to see there are stronger, or more results in a different environment, maybe with a bed.”
“That sounds mighty fine, Mr. Shimada. I’d love to.” McCree could imagine it now… Hanzo probably had silk sheets, given the subtle rich vibes he got from the office. Nice and sturdy woods, good fabric. Elegant and classy, not gaudy. Hanzo’s apartment must be the same. To be able to stretch out naked on those silk sheets…
McCree bit his lip. Too bad it wasn’t likely to happen. He was on a time crunch, and not just to find his father. His mind skittered away from those thoughts, focusing instead on the moment. He deserved this small vacation, this fling.
“However, we have a long evening for both of us,” Hanzo said. “And the bar’ll be opening soon. Do you need anything before we go?”
Damn. A dream for another night, but McCree was considering getting a different pair of pants before they went to the bar.
Hanzo had a bathroom attached to the office, and after a quick clean up, McCree stepped back out into the main area. Hanzo was leaning back in his chair with his feet on his desk, looking none worse for the wear. Before McCree had ducked into the bathroom, he saw Hanzo grab an extra pair of clothes from the closet. When asked why he kept them, Hanzo made an offhand comment about blood.
He looked refreshed and clean, while McCree regretted not bringing any sort of clothes with him.
It was what drove him to tell Hanzo to meet him at the Revelers while hopping on his bike. McCree made a quick pit stop at his motel to get a new change of clothes. And underwear.
They met up again, a little before five, at the Revelers, the bar Lacroix had pointed them to. It was a dive, but McCree knew Sombra preferred those to any other, for whatever reason. Squaring his shoulder, and with Hanzo beside him, they entered the Revelers.
People had started happy hour early, from the looks of it. A handful of people were at the bar, and a smattering across the tables. It was clean enough, but clearly had been through a few fights. McCree didn’t want to know what the state of the bathroom was.
Hanzo pointed to the second floor, allegedly where the VIPs sit, if the purple neon sign had anything to say about it. They made their way upstairs, Hanzo leading the way, and there she was.
Sombra sat at the back of the second floor, but it wasn’t hard to spot her. She was the only one there, two laptops open in front of her as she chewed gum loudly and drank… Water, from the looks of it. She waved them over, purple nails glittering against the low light, without even looking up from one of the screens.
McCree wondered if the people knew she was even here. She seemed to have an uncanny ability to make people avoid her, to look away, when she didn’t want to be seen or found.
“Sombra,” Hanzo greeted her, polite as ever. He took a seat at the opposite table to her, and McCree grabbed the chair beside him. He moved it a few inches behind Hanzo, just a little bit, giving Hanzo centre stage. McCree tried to draw as little attention to himself as possible, even though he knew it was a futile gesture. Hanzo watched him do this out of the corner of his eye, but said nothing.
“A little spider told me you were going to visit,” she smiled, but still didn’t look up from her screen. She held out her hand, waiting.
Hanzo pulled out one of the vials, and placed it in her palm.
She finally tore her eyes away from the screen to inspect the vial, and gave a low chuckle. It wasn’t filled with humour. “No wonder the spider couldn’t tell you. She hates this woman with a passion, which is a lot for her!”
“But she pointed us to you, assuring us you could tell us who and where this woman is.”
“Of course, but my information doesn’t come cheap.” Sombra sat up finally, closing both of her laptops as she fixed them with a steady look. She had a half-smile on her face, and McCree could only wonder what kind of shit she was going to pull.
“Shimada, how’s your brother nowadays?”
Hanzo blinked, startled by the question. McCree watched him fight off a frown, and answered Sombra’s question in a neutral voice. “He’s doing well. Much better than before, but we haven’t spoken recently.”
“I heard about your little fight, you know.”
Now, Hanzo can’t keep his frown off his face. “Good for you.”
“You showed a remarkable amount of restraint. Still a wonder he won’t talk to you, nearly ten years later.”
Hanzo closed his eyes, and McCree inched an arm closer to him, resting it just behind the detective on the table. McCree didn’t know if he was allowed to touch. He didn’t want to overstep, to appear too familiar. An invitation for another roll in the hay did not make a huge emotional connection.
But he wanted to offer support.
“Is that all you wanted for your information?” Hanzo asked after a beat of silence, opening his eyes again to look to Sombra.
She smiled. “From you. Now I need something from him.” She pointed directly at McCree, before making a shooing motion at Hanzo. “Alone, preferably.”
Hanzo looked surprised - again - and glanced to McCree. McCree shrugged helplessly, or tried to look it, but he figured Hanzo was already suspicious. His cover had been created sloppily at best, and he knew there were holes in it. The only saving grace was that Jesse McCree was a name with some history behind it.
“I’ll be fine, Mr. Shimada.”
“If you say so, Mr. McCree.”
McCree and Sombra watched as Hanzo left, and then waited longer until he was out of earshot. He turned to look to her, and found her with her head tilted back, staring at him. Appraising him.
He wasn’t going to start talking. She wanted something, she could ask.
There was a stare down several minutes, before Sombra sighed explosively. “Bad time to take a vacation, Deadeye.”
McCree fought the urge to scowl. This was why he hadn’t want to talk to Sombra. “I’ve been on them before.”
“This seems a little more deadly -- in the middle of a coup? Really?” She gave him a look like she expected better of him.
“I’ve dealt with them before, s’not a new thing.”
“From what I’ve heard,” she started, and McCree rolled his eyes. She barrelled on anyway, less than amused by his attitude. “It’s a lot more coordinated than in the past. More than one head, if you will.”
McCree pursed his lips, picking at the table he was leaning on. “S’why I’m tryin' t'find Gabe, Som.”
“I don’t know if he can help you with this.”
“Just lookin' for some guidance, don’t need him t’hold my hand.”
Sombra leaned forward, and murmured his name. His true name. He felt a small shiver, he wasn’t sure if the magic or from hearing his real name in such a long time. Either way, he hated the fact that he gave it to her, but he had been young, sloppy, and looking for some information. Sombra, known for collecting people’s names to hold power of them, and never giving away her own.
She reached out, and rested her hand close to his on the table. Not touching, but close. “You won’t like what you see.”
McCree frowned. “I’ll be th'judge of that. Name your price.”
“There’s none, I just wanted to talk to you one-on-one. See how you’re doing.”
“Prove you’re keepin' tabs on me and my business.”
“Someone has to,” she said, back to a playful smile. She pulls out a scrap piece of paper - surprisingly low tech for her - and wrote something on it. She slid it over to him, and leaned back in her chair.
“The address,” Sombra said, opening her laptops again, already disengaging. “I’ll call you.”
McCree stood, and wondered why that sounded like such a threat.
He was distracted as he made his way downstairs, and as he turned the corner to find Hanzo, he bumped into someone.
“Hey! Whadda think you’re doin’?” The man slurred.
McCree grunted. Of course Sombra picked a bar where people were getting drunk early in the evening. It probably provided her with so much entertainment throughout the night.
“Look, I’m not…”
The man had already lifted his fist, made the decision to cause some trouble. McCree was ready -- very few people wanted to fight a man with a prosthetic arm, and despite the fact that this wasn’t his usual arm, this old thing still packed a punch.
The man’s fist didn’t get far, still reeling back, when Hanzo caught his wrist. With a quick snap movement, the man was on the ground, groaning.
“Please don’t harrass my client,” Hanzo said, and turned to McCree. “Are you ready to go?”
They looked over and saw a few more men stand up from the bar, sluggish and drunk. McCree watched as Hanzo tilted his head to the side, assessing the threat.
“That’s our friend! You can’t just do that!”
“But I did. And I can do the same to you,” Hanzo promised. The patrons didn’t like that. “Let us leave, and you don’t have to worry about us anymore.”
The men shook their heads, and walked towards them.
“Y’know, maybe sound a tad less arrogant next time. They might be more amenable t'that,” McCree murmured to Hanzo. He squared up -- there were about ten guys between them and the door. Not too much, and McCree was thankful they came fairly early in the evening. It would have been much worse later.
McCree fought the itch to reach for his gun -- these guys weren’t worth it, not to mention the fact that it wasn’t even on him. Sadly, Peacekeeper was a little too noticable to bring around when he was pretending to be someone he wasn’t.
Either way, the fight was quick. McCree was glad to know that Hanzo believed in dirty fighting and hard hits. When the men were knocked down, the two of them made sure they stayed down.
As they left, McCree heard Sombra’s familiar laughter, and turned to see her leaning against the balcony. She smiled brightly at him, and mimicked a one-two punch in the air. “Good luck, Jesse!”
It finally started raining while they had been inside. They walked a building over, and stood under the canopy.
“You got the address?” Hanzo asked, adjusting his cuffs. Very little was knocked out of place during the fight, other than someone had made a grab for his tie. They hadn’t lasted long enough to do anything about it, but it was still out from his vest, and askew.
McCree reached out, and took it. He thought about tucking it away, but he found his brain stalled, just holding it. Adrenalin was still coursing through him, as well as the thrill. How long had it been since McCree had been in a simple fist fight? Too long.
He slid his free arm up, slow and careful, around Hanzo’s shoulders just in case he disagreed. Instead, the detective smiled, smug, and McCree felt the man’s fingers hook into his belt, pulling him closer.
They stood there, staring into each other’s eyes, before Hanzo finally closed the distance and crushed their lips together.
The kiss was hard, probably a by product of the previous fight, but McCree welcomed it. He tugged at Hanzo’s tie, pulling him closer and holding him in place. When they finally broke apart to breath, resting their foreheads against each other’s, McCree finally tucked Hanzo’s tie away.
“I got th'address,” McCree said, realizing he never answered Hanzo’s original question. “We should… We should probably go there now.” He licked his lips, running his hand down Hanzo’s chest, to smooth out his tie.
Think about why he was here. Focus on that.
Hanzo nodded, and took the scrap of paper when McCree handed it to him. He frowned at the address. “I know the general area. Shouldn’t be too hard to find.”
They went, but not before making a pit stop to grab an umbrella from a nearby store.
McCree was surprised to find out it the address was for a clinic.
It was a little hard to find, on a very small side street. The only thing that kept it from being a back alley was the fact that it was very well kept, had several other stores, and had a few small street lamps to light the area.
The clinic itself was nondescript; the only window was on the door, an a plain black plaque that listed its hours.
It was open now. Was it an emergency clinic?
Hanzo led the way, McCree shaking out the umbrella before he followed. A bell rung when the door closed behind them, leaving them in a well lit and empty waiting room. There were chairs, and a desk for a receptionist, but there was no one in the room, not even any magazines.
The intercom on the desk buzzed, and woman’s voice with an Irish lilt spoke. “I’ll be out in a moment.”
“Been here before?” McCree asked.
“No,” Hanzo frowned, looking around. “I didn’t know this place existed. This isn’t where I usually work.”
McCree looked around further. The walls were an inoffensive blue, which he guessed were supposed to be calming. The chairs looked like any other waiting room chairs, nice enough to sit in but you’d still rather see the doctor now instead of waiting. There were no posters, which McCree couldn’t figure out was a blessing or a curse. The whole place looked… Barren. Or a front, he’d seen a few of those in his time.
Why the fuck would Gabe be here?
The door on the other side of the room opened, and a tall, thin woman walked out. Her bright red hair was swept back, and she wore a lab coat over a black button down shirt and white tie. Her eyes were two different colours, and she was studying them both intently.
“You don’t seem to be ill, much less stabbed.”
“What?” McCree said after a moment.
“We’re an emergency clinic,” she said. “Generally people come here when they’ve been injured, and don’t want to go to the hospital.”
McCree almost wanted to ask if it was because the nearest hospital was too far away, but given the complete lack of staff and general atmosphere, it wasn’t that.
“No,” Hanzo said, stepping forward. McCree saw another light show from under Hanzo’s sleeve out of the corner of his eye. The woman wasn’t reacting to it, so that at least confirmed that it was only something he had to worry about. The dragons snaked down Hanzo’s arm, and leg, before skittering across the floor and disappearing through the door that led to further into the clinic. “We’re here for some information.”
The woman smiled, just a small twitch of the side of her mouth. “I suspect you’re not here for the usual information I dispense. What would you like to know?”
“Your name for starters, if you’d be so kind.”
She laughed. “Of course. I’m Doctor O’Deorain, and you are?” She didn’t extend her hand to shake.
“Detective Shimada Hanzo,” Hanzo replied, and motioned to McCree, who nodded. “And my client, Jesse McCree.”
“Private detective. We are not police, you have nothing to fear.”
“There was never any reason to fear.” She said it, self-assured. Had anyone else said that, McCree was sure they’d be lying through their teeth. She said it as if it was simple fact. Her body language hadn’t even changed, still a relaxed stance, with her right hand in her lab coat pocket. “Ask your questions.”
“We’re looking for a man by the name of Gabriel Reyes. McCree here is a student of his, and he went missing from his home two nights ago.”
“There is no one by that name here.” Doctor O’Deorain was good. There was no change to her expression, and if Sombra hadn’t given him this address, he might have almost believed her.
The dragons returned, keeping low until they made it back to Hanzo. They almost seemed to whisper something in Hanzo’s ear, before returning to his left arm. Hanzo looked to McCree quickly, and there was a miniscule shake to his head.
“I doubt that, doctor,” McCree said, doing his best to appear nonchalant. “Considerin’ we were told that he was here, or is here, by Sombra herself. I think you’re lyin’.”
There, a small scowl appeared. It was a look he’d seen a few times before, on people who worked or interacted with Sombra before. A tell that was almost as well known as Sombra’s purple skull.
“Fine,” O’Deorain said, apparently knowing when to fold them. “He was here.”
“Why? Where’d he go?”
“Doctor-patient confidentiality.” Or maybe not. “I can’t tell you that. Maybe if you were his partner or child, and he listed it on his forms, I could. But he didn’t. Now run along, you’ll find nothing you want here.”
“Except he’s still here,” Hanzo stepped forward, heading for the door leading further into the clinic. “I know he is.”
O’Deorain reached out, and grabbed his shoulder, trying to yank him back. Hanzo was firm, McCree knew that much, and he wouldn’t move if he wanted to.
While she was focused on Hanzo, McCree walked around them, heading for the door.
“Wait,” she snapped out, frowning. Finally, an expression other than dry amusement. “You don’t want to…”
But the door opened before any of them reached for it.
Gabe looked worse for the wear. He was in a hospital gown and slippers, which no one ever looked good in, but his skin had a grey sheen under it. He wasn’t just missing one fingernail, but all of them, all seemingly just slipped off from the looks of it. His hair was falling out in places, leaving only haphazard patches behind across his face. His eyes were black around the edges, and he was breathing out a black, black smoke.
“Reyes,” O’Deorain started to say, letting go of Hanzo.
Gabe waved her off, grunting. He pointed to McCree, and jerked his thumb behind him. McCree followed Gabe as they walked further into the clinic, and into one of the examination rooms. Instead of the usual bench, there was a bed, so maybe this was more of a hospital room. Gabe sat down on one of the two chairs, and patted the one beside him.
McCree sat, a little numb. He hadn’t seen Gabe in a few years, he knew, usually keeping in contact through calls, but this… Questions raced around his head, clamoring to be asked.
“Why didn’t y'tell me y'were sick?” McCree asked, voice hoarse.
Gabe looked at his hands, pressing into the nail beds of one hand with his thumb. When he finally spoke, his voice was raspy, quiet, like he lost it. Given the smoke that was coming out every time he breathed, McCree wasn’t entirely surprised. “Didn’t want you to worry.”
“So you… Just didn’t bother t’tell me? How long has this been goin’ on?”
“It clearly fuckin’ does!”
“Since before I found you, but it hasn’t been like this,” he whispered, motioning to himself. “Until the last year or two.”
“What?” McCree said, leaning back. Gabe had been sick for that long, and he hadn’t noticed? Hadn’t been told? “How th'fuck did it get this bad this fast?”
“Would you believe this is the treatment?”
McCree looked to the door, thinking of the doctor standing out in the waiting room. She did this to Gabe? He didn’t even realize he stood up when he felt Gabe’s hand on his arm, pulling him back down to sit.
“Stop with that look on your face. It’s got no place here, Deadeye.”
McCree breathed out, trying to calm his nerves, his thoughts. “Does Jack know?”
Gabe wheezed, and McCree was almost worried, but it turned out that was just Gabe’s attempt at laughing. “He may be blind as a bat without his glasses, but it’d be hard to keep this a secret.”
“And you told Sombra? Or did she find out on her own.”
Gabe frowned. “I told her.”
“Y’told her, but y’didn’t tell me. Y’told both of them not t’tell me, didn’t you?” Sombra had said he wouldn’t be happy with what he saw.
“I said, I didn’t want you to worry.”
“And y’almost pulled it off, keeping me in the dark. But it suddenly got worse.”
“I meant to call you, to tell you not to come, but,” Gabe scratched his chin, and McCree watched as skin and hair flaked to the ground. “I forgot my phone somewhere.”
“Fuck,” Gabe whispered, emphatically. “I’m sorry.”
“Y’shoulda told me!”
“You have so much on your plate.”
McCree rubbed his face, groaning. It wasn’t an excuse, but he could imagine it seemed like a good reason in Gabe’s head. It still hurt though, his mentor, and father figure, didn’t bother telling him he was ill. That he had been ill, for the longest time. McCree felt a pit in his stomach, yawning as dread settled.
He remembered when Gabe promised him he would tell him anything, no matter the importance. A stupid thing to say to a rebellious teen, looking to fight and argue, but it had done the trick.
Apparently this wasn’t one of them.
“... Y’fine like this?”
“This is a bad day,” Gabe admitted. “I’ve had better ones. Moira said it’s going to fluctuate like this until we can get it stabilized, but it’s tricky.”
“No, not really, but she’s the only one who can do it. Who is willing to do it.”
They sat in silence for a time, McCree watching Gabe out of the corner of his eye, while Gabe gave a thousand yard stare to the wall.
“Y’gonna be stayin’ here much longer?”
“Another night or two, at least. I’m sorry, it ruined our dinner,” Gabe said, focusing back on the present. He looked to McCree and frowned. “What did you want to talk about, anyway? You were tight lipped on the phone, so I assume it’s about your assignment.”
“Don’t worry about it.”
Gabe blinked, then narrowed his eyes. “Tell me.”
McCree fidgeted, weighing the pros and cons of telling Gabe about what was happening. On one hand, he really needed some advice. Sombra hadn’t been wrong that this was a bigger coup than the last one, but at the same time… Looking at Gabe now, skin falling away as they spoke, he wondered if it was worth stressing out a sick man.
He bit the bullet.
“How do y’react to several people under command wantin’ t’oust and kill you?”
Gabe wheezed out a sigh. “What ever I’d have to do.”
“Wow, that’s… Not helpful at all, Gabe.”
“I don’t know,” Gabe shrugged. “Big flashy event, like an explosion, use it to fake my death. Tell no one I was alive for a few years at least to make sure. Hunt down those who wanted to kill me.”
“I’m sure Jack would appreciate that. Fuck.”
“I’ve never had to do it, thankfully. Got out of that business. So, what’re you going to do?”
“I’ll handle it.” He did know how to handle it. He had come to get Gabe’s advice, just in case there was another option, but there wasn’t. He knew there wasn’t. Not with the corner he had put himself in.
McCree stood up, and Gabe followed him, hand gripping his prosthesis. He coughed a few times, his voice even weaker. “You better not be pulling my cryptic shit on me. I swear --” He stopped, overcome with a coughing fit. Gabe doubled over, smoke escaping from his mouth as he gripped his throat.
McCree helped him to the bed, and had to fight to get Gabe’s hand off his arm. “Lemme go get th’doctor, okay? Gabe, it’ll be fine. Y’just focus on gettin’ better, okay? I’ll talk t’you, or I’ll contact Sombra. Just…”
Finally prying Gabe’s hand away when it looked like the man wasn’t breathing between the coughs, McCree bolted out of the room, and down the hall. He slammed open the door to the waiting room, making both Hanzo and O’Deorain jump. They were sitting on opposite sides of the room, Hanzo in one of the chairs with his phone out, and the doctor behind the desk, looking like she had been playing Minesweeper of all things.
“Doctor, he’s coughin'--”
O’Deorain was up and out of the room so fast he wasn’t even sure if he saw her move. He’d have to trust her ability, if not her, to help Gabe. If he stayed, he’d just get underfoot. Even worse, Gabe wouldn’t get any bedrest, because he’d be up and about, trying to get McCree to talk. No, he couldn’t stay.
He startled when Hanzo touched his arm.
“Let’s… Let’s go. We won’t do any good here.”
They left the clinic, and it was raining heavier than before. They walked together under the umbrella, thankfully just big enough for the two of them. They walked for several blocks, back onto a main street, when McCree stopped. Hanzo stopped in front of him, watching him.
“Well,” McCree murmured. “At least I know where he is, and what’s happenin'.”
Hanzo reached up, slow, careful, and rested his hand against McCree’s cheek. He brushed his thumb under McCree’s right eye, and McCree wondered if he knew.
It was tender; the sweetest touch he’d received in a long time. People McCree could trust and touch were few and far between. Hanzo was the first person to treat him like this in awhile, as embarrassing as it was to admit. Being himself was hard, after such a long time.
He closed his eyes, and nuzzled the hand, reaching up to cover it with his own. They stood there, the rain becoming nothing more than white noise as he focused on the warmth of Hanzo’s hand.
He was going to miss this.
Shimada Hanzo sat at his desk, working through some papers of some recent cases. They had been easy to close - one had been a missing cat, the other was finding a lost necklace. He had charged for the necklace, but not for the cat.
As he stood up to file the papers away, there was a knock at his door.
He frowned, approaching it. He had no appointments, and it was little late for a drop in. It definitely couldn’t be a solicitor, they never made it past doorman at the front door.
On the other side of the door stood Gabriel Reyes, looking better than when Hanzo first met him.
He thought back to that time, how subdued McCree had been by the end of it. Closure worked in different ways for people, and finding his mentor seemed to make him sombre. He had thanked him for his work, paid for it, even tried to tip, which Hanzo insisted against. He had smiled, a small one compared to the others Hanzo had seen before during their short two days together, and said that he had a great time, despite the reason why he had come. Maybe, they could see each other again if he were in the area.
Hanzo had agreed. That had been three months ago, at least.
Reyes wore a hoodie, track pants, beanie, and a face mask. The kind a person wore when they were ill. The centre of it was more black than the white surrounding it, but given that he had seen the man exhaling black smoke, it shouldn’t be surprising.
He hadn’t even buzzed. How did he get in the building?
“May I come in?” His voice was a rasp, but strong enough. Hanzo nodded, and held open the door.
As Reyes passed, he handed Hanzo two folded sheets of paper. One was an article from an old newspaper, from a few months back, and the story was about the Deadlock Gang. There was only a small picture of the Deadlock sign, and article told of how the leader of the gang, Deadeye, had fatally shot several members of his gang. Of course, none of the law enforcement groups seemed to know how many strong the gang was. Deadlock regularly ran other arms dealing groups into the ground, then absorbed those who wished to join. The number seemed to change, at least always growing bigger.
Hanzo frowned. He knew, from his past, that accepting members from other groups ran a risk. You always had to make sure they were being watched, and to prove their loyalty, lest they get ideas.
The second article was a follow up story, two weeks old now, about how the law enforcement managed to raid one of Deadlock’s well known hideouts, only to find it empty, anything of value stripped bare. They assumed the gang went to ground, or moved on, but the most important tidbit was that Deadlock had been silent since the shooting several months ago. No one had seen hide or hair of them.
Hanzo looked up from the articles, and found Reyes, standing at parade rest, watching him.
Reyes breathed in, a crackling, rasping noise, and spoke.
“I want you to find my son.”