Backlogged to a few days before Christmas! JUST A TYPICAL DAY AT THE STATION including Ollie starting a scene and Baxter trying to pretend he doesn't know her.
Even though the weather was changing and the season was getting merrier by the minute, everything remained virtually the same at the department. Sure, there were the usual half-assed decorations at the front and some of the clerks wore fuzzy hats, and things like the PETP protests and department store thieves... but there was no change in the sheer amount of paperwork that was still sitting on Ollie's desk.
It was a shame, she figured, that during a time of great cheer and brotherly love paperwork still had to be processed in the same way, with the same deadlines and the same amount of work and effort. It didn't help that some idiot replaced the coffee with hot cocoa. She could live with the tiny marshmallows, sure, but it was that sweet caffeinated nectar that kept her going during times like this. She tapped her pen on one of the check boxes of her current report (the same one she'd been analyzing an hour ago) and then leaned back in her chair and stretched loudly.
Baxter did not mind paperwork so much. He was really good at it! Unlike, well, basically everything else about his job. Except maybe knowing the book. He really knew the book.
The only bad parts about being really good with paperwork were 1) you finished fast and then had nothing to do, and 2) people kept asking you to do their forms for them.
He looked up from his desk when Ollie called his name, leaning his chair back. "Yeah?"
Still keeping her chair leaned back and her arms outstretched behind her, Ollie wiggled her fingers in the air and turned her head slowly to look at her partner. He looked pretty much done with his paper. What could a little bit more do to hurt him? Anyway, he needed the experience, so she was doing him a favor. Yeah! A favor.
"Wanna do my forms for meeee?"
His expression fell and he just stared at her, in silence.
God forbid anybody ever try to get his attention for anything else.
She blinked and sat up properly, rolling her shoulders.
"What? I've been doing them all morning!"
"So have I," he replied, THOROUGHLY UNAMUSED.
She rolled over close to her partner, trying to put on the best innocent face that she could muster while still looking somewhat reasonable. Ollie didn't want to push it too far.
"Please? I'll get you some hot cocoa~?"
His face didn't change; he folded his arms and continued staring. "If you're not done with it yet, maybe that means you need more practice."
Ollie stared at him and then began laughing, reaching over and wrapping her arm around his shoulder while still managing her giggles. This kid! He was priceless! After a moment she took a deep breath and wiped her eyes.
"So, seriously though..."
It turned into a glare. He just waited out her laughter, and then replied with a rather annoyed, "Ollie."
He'd just been through this yesterday with one of his cousins. She hadn't even asked, she'd just dumped a stack of files on his desk and said she'd be back in an hour. He was, well, slightly fed-up with this treatment.
Ollie sighed, tossing her head and looking somewhat exasperated. No fair! He was her paperwork jockey! And now look at him... it was like he was getting burnt out before he even entered his prime -
"Fine!" She slid her arm out from around his shoulders and rolled the short distance back to her desk and picked up her pen. Tap, tap.
"So like, maybe help me just a teensy-weensy bit?"
He went back to the last of his work as soon as she absconded to her desk, but looked up again at the request. He gave a reluctant sigh and asked, "What do you need help with?"
Ollie plucked a middle few from her rather large stack and offered them to Baxter with a grin.
"They're real simple stuff. You've got the book memorized I bet, so this stuff'll be a piece of cake. I'm keeping the hard stuff for myself."
He sighed, reaching out to take the papers from Ollie. He did know the book; he'd memorized most of the codes - it was like knowing pi to 100 places (...which he also had memorized, thanks boredom during high school math!). It'd be easier for him to do that than to force her to look everything up, but still. Sigh.
He set aside the last few forms he had left to fill in any book-specific stuff on hers. Though he ended up just doing most of them because he hated leaving spots blank...
Ollie kept up her part of deal, as she actually set about doing her own work. It was easier to focus and get stuff done without having so much looming over her. Anyway, Baxter was a good guy and his work had never steered her wrong in the past! They were a team! And being on a team meant sometimes doing your teammate's work even when you didn't want to.
Not that Ollie really found herself in that position very often when it came to paperwork.
"So. Do anything fun lately?"
He was over halfway done with what she'd handed him by the time she asked. "My friend brought over his totodile to play with Speedy on Sunday," he said, without looking up. This was kind of noteworthy, specifically because Baxter never really talked about having friends, much less doing anything with them.
Check this, check that. Pause. Check the next one too, just in case. Ollie wondered if anyone actually read any of these reports after they were entered into the database and then put in boxes and... she didn't know. Transported to some sub-arctic underground holding facility for all time.
"Yeah? What friend was this?"
A nice way of saying 'wow, I didn't know you had friends'.
"His name's Shorty," he answered, "you haven't met him." He flipped over the sheet he'd just finished and started on the last one.
She blinked. Shorty? It sounded kind of like a gangster's name.
"Can I meet him?"
Cheeeeck. Scribble. Guess at the proper code. Ollie's style of paperwork was a little less efficient than Baxter's.
He paused, looking up at her. "...Um, yeah, I guess so. If you want." The question really caught him off-guard, though, and that was fairly apparent.
"Alright." Ollie didn't look up towards Baxter for either the question or the answer and went right on working. If he was okay with her meeting him, then this Shorty person probably wasn't a big deal.
She tossed whatever sheet she was working on into her outbox and grabbed her next page, inspecting it front and back before setting it down to fill in the gaps in the middle of the 'o's.
... Huh, and dropped just like that. How odd.
After another couple minutes, he walked over (it was like three steps, but he still got out of his chair to do it) and set the finished pages on her desk before going back to his own to finish the last of his own work.
It was unfortunate that today was a paperwork day for them, because he'd much rather be outside feeling like he was actually getting some policework done. Or at least he'd rather get away from the possibility of needing to deal with his aunt or his cousin for any length of time.
Especially unfortunate because he always finished way early and spent the rest of the day either being painfully bored or doing everyone else's work. In fact, once he finished, he started shuffling papers from his done pile back into his to-do pile just so it'd look like he had work left, thus minimizing the "HEY BAXTER CAN YOU DO THIS FOR ME?"s he'd get.
Ollie flashed Baxter a grin and a quick 'thanks!' when he gave her back the papers he'd been working on. Without even bothering to look them over, she dropped them in her outbox. After that, she surprisingly spent quite a while (for her) filling out some of her forms (though the efficiency of her process did not change).
During this period of quiet, she suddenly let out an aggravated sigh and dropped her pen, rubbing her eyes furiously.
"I should come here right before I go to bed. This is enough to put me to sleep!"
He'd gone from papers to organizing his desk drawers. "Yeah, I prefer patrol," he replied, without looking up at her. (Even if all they did on patrol was hang out waiting for stuff to happen, it was better than this.)
"You said it, pal!"
Ollie slammed her fist down on her desk, looking serious and determined (!!!).
"It's a damned outrage, to keep good Jennies like us off the streets!"
He jumped just slightly when her fist hit the desk, looking up at her. "...Right." BECAUSE THEY WERE SUCH GOOD JENNIES.
This bit was sort of muttered under his breath as he turned back to the drawer: "Because we do so much on patrol anyway."
Ollie didn't seem to notice anything from the guy next to her except for his words of affirmation.
"We protect these streets! We look after the people! And what do we get in return? Nothin'! Nothin' except this crap!"
She lifted up a form (where she doodled a skitty in the corner) and slapped it with the back of her other hand. Some other officers were beginning to take notice and turn around or pause while going about their ways to stare.
Baxter glanced over a shoulder at her. When he noticed the other officers staring, his eyebrows furrowed and he admonished, in a very low voice, "Ollie!"
Ollie dropped the form and sat back, taking off her cap.
"I go out, I do my duty," It was here that she lowered her voice so that only Baxter could really hear her ranting,"and do I get recognition? No! Some Jenny-Jenny? One litterer put in their place and you'd think they were Officer of the Year. You've seen the bulletin board! I don't even know why they bother takin' a new picture every month for 'outstanding officer' or whatever crap that is."
She began to spin her cap on her finger.
"It's a cryin' shame, Bax. A cryin' shame."
His annoyed expression faded instantly, and he just looked at her for a second before turning away and staring down at his desk, shoulders hunched. He really didn't know what to say to her rant, mostly because it was completely true but also because it hit him really close to home.
"Yeah," he muttered finally. "I know."
Ollie stole a glance at him, and smiled slyly. She focused her attention back on her spinning cap before she continued.
"Why'd you become an officer, Bax?"
He glanced up at her, his expression this unreadable sort of thoughtful discontent. "Because I'm a Jenny.""
"Yeah, but you're more than that. You're Baxter Jenny. Those chicks?" Ollie stopped spinning her cap, popping it up in the air and catching it by the bill. She held it out as she made a sweep of the station, most of it populated by his female relatives. "Any of those are just 'a Jenny'. One of these days, man, you're going to be the Jenny. But not if you let yourself get counted in with the masses."
She cleared her throat and stood up abruptly.
"Anyway, I'm goin' on a coffee break."
"Okay." He didn't reply to the speech that preceded the announcement. It wasn't something he wanted to talk about, and he'd be perfectly happy if she just let it drop at that. He went back to organizing his desk drawers, hoping she would 1) actually leave without trying to drag him off with her and 2) let the subject drop when she came back.
Ollie felt pretty good, making the kid think and all about the important parts of life. Though, her actions weren't completely functions of the altruistic side of her personality. She looked very happy with herself, though, grinning a rather sly grin as she tipped her hat (since resituated on her head again) to the officers that she passed.
She didn't pressure Baxter to accompany her on her trip to the coffee room (where she spent longer that she probably should've) and upon her return the only interaction she initiated between them was slipping a sugar packet into his pen holder.