By JudyL

May 2, 2010


Universe:  ATF

Language warning: yep<G>

Length: 5 pages


This one was inspired by an e-mail I received. There is another story that was posted about the same time I wrote this based on the same e-mail, but we approached it from different angles. If you’d like to see the story by Zarina, it’s on Blackraptor and here’s the link. The Memo




Chris Larabee wasn’t quite sure how he was going to break the news to his men and manage to keep his composure. He walked slowly toward his door, clutching the piece of paper that had nearly brought him, a big, tough, no-nonsense ATF agent… a former Seal even, to tears. He paused at the door and took a deep breath. He could do this. He wasn’t the boss for nothing.


With one last, deep, fortifying breath, Chris Larabee, the man in black, the team leader no one dared to look at sideways, opened the door and took a step into the bullpen.


All eyes lifted and a soft, Texas twanged ‘damn’ drifted audibly across the room.


“What’s up, old dog?” Buck Wilmington asked, not liking the slightly crazed look in his old friend’s eyes.


“We have another memo from Human Resources,” Chris said ominously.


“Ah hell,” Vin said, his sentiment echoed silently by the others.


“Damn, Chris,” Buck said, running his fingers nervously over his thick mustache. “Last time we got one of those damned things, they tried to make me shave my ‘stache, and the Kid and Junior here get regulation haircuts.”


Vin shuddered, grabbed a baseball cap out of his drawer and shoved it roughly over his wavy, almost shoulder-length locks. “Ain’t happenin’ Cowboy,” he said defiantly.


Chris shook his head. “It’s not that,” he said, pressing his lips firmly closed.


“Thank God,” Josiah said, sending a teasing glance at Nathan.


JD chuckled.


“What?” Nathan asked running his hand over his smooth head. “Rain likes it this way.”


Josiah just laughed.


“Yeah, well,” Buck said, “your lady may like it, but mine prefer a little facial hair.”


“That is not a ‘little’ facial hair, Buck,” Ezra chimed it.


Buck preened. “Grand, ain’t it? Jealous, Ezra?”


“Not hardly,” Ezra replied with a roll of his eyes.


“Please,” JD pleaded, “tell us it’s not another dress code memo. I hate wearing suits and ties.”


“Ah hell,” Vin said sinking lower in his chair. “Last time they had us all dressin’ like Ezra.”


“Hey!” Ezra protested. “You all looked quite refined… for once,” he added sarcastically. “I don’t see what has you all in such a dither about this memorandum. A little grooming and nicer mode of dress would do you all wonders.”


“Shut up, Ezra,” five voices and multiple balls of paper pelted the undercover agent from all sides.


“Fine,” Ezra grumbled knocking the paper balls off his desk and into the trash can, “be Neanderthals, what do I care.”


“It’s not dress code either,” Chris interrupted before his team’s shenanigans caused him to lose it all together. “Evidently someone has been complaining about our… conduct. Here,” he said, shoving the paper at Ezra who was the closest. “Read this and let me know what you’re all going to do about it,” he said, then quickly went back into his office and closed the door.


A strange, muted noise came through briefly, so briefly that the others decided they’d imagined it.


“Well, don’t just sit there, Ez,” Vin said tossing another ball of paper at him.


“Cut that out,” Ezra said, “you’re acting like a child.”


Vin stuck his tongue out at Ezra while Josiah launched a rubber band that hit Ezra on the side of the neck.


Ezra clamped his hand to his neck and glared at the profiler. He opened his mouth, “I’m going to…” and quickly shut it as he realized that he’d been about to respond with just as childish an answer. After all, it would be quite shameful to go running to Chris and ‘tell’ on the others.


Ezra ignored Vin’s shit-eating grin and looked at the memo. He read the first few paragraphs and huffed. Good luck with that. As he browsed over the rest of the memo, his lips started to twitch. Oh my. This is… Ezra’s eyes narrowed and he glanced over his shoulder at Chris’ office, suspicion filling him.


You goin to read that memo out loud?” Vin asked.


Ezra shook his head, his face suspiciously blank. “I believe this is aimed at the rest of you… gentlemen. I must speak with Mr. Larabee,” he said, dropping the paper on Vin’s desk before crossing quickly to Chris’ door. He gave a short knock and entered before receiving a reply.


The others listened for Larabee’s usual bellow, but didn’t hear a thing. It was quite unnerving.


“Read it, Vin,” Buck encouraged, trepidation in his eyes.


Vin swallowed, looked at the slightly wrinkled paper and started to read.


“Dear Employees:

It has been brought to management's attention that some individuals throughout the agency have been using foul language during the course of normal conversation with their co-workers.

Due to complaints received from some employees who may be easily offended, this type of language will no longer be tolerated.

We do, however, realize the critical importance of being able to accurately express your feelings when communicating with co-workers.

Therefore, a list of 18 New and Innovative 'TRY SAYING' phrases have been provided so that proper exchange of ideas and information can continue in an effective manner.  

Number 1
TRY SAYING: I think you could use more training.
INSTEAD OF: You don't know what the f___ you're doing.

Number 2

TRY SAYING: She's an aggressive go-getter.
INSTEAD OF: She's a f___ing bit__.

Number 3

TRY SAYING: Perhaps I can work late.
INSTEAD OF: And when the f___ do you expect me to do this?

Number 4

TRY SAYING: I'm certain that isn't feasible.
INSTEAD OF: No f___ing way.

Number 5

INSTEAD OF: You've got to be sh___ing me!  

Number 6

TRY SAYING: Perhaps you should check with...
INSTEAD OF: Tell someone who gives a sh__.

Number 7

TRY SAYING: I wasn't involved in the project.
INSTEAD OF: It's not my f___ing problem.

Number 8

TRY SAYING: That's interesting.
INSTEAD OF: What the f___?

Number 9

TRY SAYING: I'm not sure this can be implemented.
INSTEAD OF: This sh__ won't work.

Number 10

TRY SAYING: I'll try to schedule that.
INSTEAD OF: Why the f___ didn't you tell me sooner?  

Number 11

TRY SAYING: He's not familiar with the issues...
INSTEAD OF: He's got his head up his a__.

Number 12

TRY SAYING: Excuse me, sir?
INSTEAD OF: Eat sh__ and die.

Number 13

TRY SAYING: So you weren't happy with it?
INSTEAD OF: Kiss my a__..

Number 14

TRY SAYING: I'm a bit overloaded at the moment..
INSTEAD OF: F__ it, I'm on salary..  

Number 15

TRY SAYING: I don't think you understand.
INSTEAD OF: Shove it up your a___

Number 16

TRY SAYING: I love a challenge.
INSTEAD OF: This f___ing job sucks.

Number 17

TRY SAYING: You want me to take care of that?
INSTEAD OF: Who the f___ died and made you boss?

Number 18

TRY SAYING: He's somewhat insensitive..
INSTEAD OF: He's a pr_ck.

Thank You,
Human Resources


Needless to say, the laughter in both Larabee’s office and the bullpen was long lasting and frequently punctuated with somewhat colorful phrases.


Two days later, Human Resources rescinded the memo due to the overly sarcastic manner in which the new ‘Try saying’ phrases were used.


A new memo simply asked that certain words not be said in front of the media and higher ups in the agency.


The latest memo told every one to disregard the previous *&(*^*^% memos and shut the f*** up.


The end.



If you enjoyed it, please let me know. JudyL