Firefighters AU. Imagine person A is <b>really</b> bad in the kitchen and keeps burning things and person B is the firefighter who keeps showing up and save the day.
“Aw, spaghetti, no,” Clint protested. He’d only gone to check his email for like five minutes, a huge stockpot of water shouldn’t boil away in that amount of time, but based on the blatting sounds coming from his ceiling and the roiling smoke clogging up the hall, that’s exactly what had happened. Either that, or he’d left a loaf of bread on the stove again and turned on the wrong burner. He’d done that, too.
It couldn’t be microwave popcorn, this time, because he hadn’t put popcorn in. He was pretty sure, at least. Exhaustion had a way of having him running on autopilot. He knew he was tired, he had three part time jobs, all of which worked him a precise 32 hours per week because that was the most amount of hours he could have without qualifying for any sort of company health insurance. Not that he needed the insurance, but he would have liked some fucking overtime pay for the amount of hours he put in.
It wasn’t the first time it had happened. It probably wasn’t going to be the last time, but it might well be the last time here. The fire department had been very clear, last time; one more house fire in this building and Clint was going to get fined.
A fine was going to mean he couldn’t pay rent; which meant he was going to lose his nice comfortable loft apartment, and–
God, the smoke was thick.
What Clint needed was a fire alarm that would shut itself off when he yelled, “hey, I’m cooking here!” at it.
His head was spinning lazily. The walls weren’t quite. Right.
And the air was really, really hot.
This wasn’t a cooking fire, Clint realized, suddenly, a few wisps of burned crumbs. Or even a more substantial cooking accident, like melting the stockpot onto the stove trying to make turkey broth. This was… an actual fire?
Clint went to his knees in the hall.
If it was an actual fire, even if it was something in the kitchen, and he’d left it on, at least the fire department wouldn’t be able to fine him. That was a good thought. His eyes were blurry, tears streaked his cheeks. Lucky was under his hands, whining. The dog bit hold of Clint’s tee shirt and tried to drag him down the hall.
What the hell?
The shirt ripped and Lucky barked frantically before erupting into some terribly painful sounding dog-coughs.
Come to think of it, Clint was coughing, too.
The floor was nice. Cooler. He laid down.
(there’s a readmore line here; I always post to A03 within an hour of this post going live, so you can find it there along with my other fic)