Identification and Elucidation

by Nix
(crimsonquills AT gmail DOT com)

Author's Notes: I was watching an episode of due South on TV when a moment in the episode dropped this bunny in my lap. It's very off the cuff, but I couldn't resist. Er, also, for timeline reasons, fans of due South can consider this to be set at some point post-Call of the Wild when, for reasons unexplained here, Fraser is still working with Ray in Chicago.

Thanks go out to webbgirl for helping me over an unexpectedly sticky point in the premise.

Tony hated corporations that took their internal security this seriously. Okay, so maybe a Navy contractor who kept prototype weapons on the premises needed the security checkpoint complete with metal detectors, belt scanner, banks of TV monitors, and a rent-a-cop. That didn't change the fact that the guy behind the desk was a rent-a-cop, and it was a given that he was about to unintentionally but firmly take Tony and Gibbs's authority down a notch. Well, maybe not Gibbs's. Gibbs had his own, personal authority. But Tony's was definitely going to suffer.

The skinny blond cop who'd been firmly assigned to "help" the NCIS agents displayed his badge and weapon to the guy behind the desk. "Ray Kowalski, Chicago PD." The rent-a-cop nodded and Kowalski circled around the metal detector.

Gibbs stepped up next. Tony sighed to himself as he retrieved his ID. Here it came. "Special Agents Gibbs and DiNozzo," Gibbs said briskly, displaying his ID and gun. Tony followed suit. "NCIS."

The rent-a-cop frowned. "What?" Every single time, Tony thought bitterly.

"Naval Criminal Investigative Service," Gibbs said evenly.

The rent-a-cop examined their ID for another long moment. "All right," he said at length. "Go around."

Tony shot Kowalski a challenging look as he pocketed his ID, but the cop looked oddly sympathetic and nodded back towards the desk.

Turning to look, Tony was just in time to see Kowalski's partner step up to the desk and say, "Constable Benton Fraser, RCMP."

The rent-a-cop frowned, shot a suspicious glance at Gibbs and Tony, and looked back at Fraser. "Excuse me?" he demanded, not at all politely.

"Royal Canadian Mounted Police," Fraser explained calmly. Then, apparently feeling that further explanation was warranted, "I first came to Chicago on the trail of the killers of my father, and for reasons that don't need exploring at this juncture I have remained, attached as liaison with the Canadian Consulate."

Tony turned back to Kowalski and returned the sympathetic look. With interest.