Disclaimer: The A-Team and its members are the creations
of Stephen J Cannell and Frank Lupo. They belong to Universal
and Stephen J Cannell Productions. No copyright infringement intended.
All other characters, events, and locations in this fan-fic are
purely the production of the author's imagination and only written
for the pleasure of the author. If coincidence occurs - it is
just that: coincidence.
"Murdock, I really don't care as long as Billy
and his little friends don't chew up my shoes or drool all over
my suits, O.K.?" Lieutenant Tempelton "Face" Peck
was saying as the Millwood, Arkansas city limit sign passed. The
A-Team had just finished a mission that had taken them to Atlanta,
Georgia. They had decided that it would be pleasant as well as
wise to take a route back to Los Angeles that would be off the
direct route yet not way out of the way. They had gone through
Louisiana into Arkansas. "I don't want my brand new Armanis
to become Billy's birthday cake."
"Shut up! Both of you, shut up! Faceman, you
soundin' more and more like that crazy fool!" Sergeant BA
Baracus bellowed from the driver's seat. "There ain't no
dog. Billy's a figment of that crazy man's imagination. So Billy
can't have no birthday party. If either . . ."
"BA" Colonel John "Hannibal"
Smith warned from the front passenger's seat as he lit his second
cigar since crossing the Arkansas state line. BA grimaced but
said nothing at the correction. After a moment or two of silence,
Hannibal said, "Pull over in the next gas station, I think
we need something to eat. And I know everybody is tired."
It had been a long drive. They all needed a break.
As the bell rang for old-fashioned service, the Team
exited the van. "Face, you and Murdock, go to the diner across
the street and get us somthin' to eat. BA, after the attendant
puts gas in the van, pay the man. Let's meet back here. I'm goin'
to keep watch -- be sure there aren't any MPs behind us."
Everybody nodded to their assignment and headed where they were
"Hey, Faceman, what ya hungry for? Billy and
I want some nice juicy steak or somethin'," Captain H.M.
"Howlin' Mad" Murdock asked as they approached the diner.
Face's attention was elsewhere, namely on a very shapely, young,
red-head apparently headed for the diner as well. His piercing
blue eyes sparkled as they neared the young woman. "Faceman,"
Murdock persisted, "what you want?"
"Hmmm? Ummm, oh. That lovely young red-head
over there," he smiled his winning smile as he nodded a greeting
over the distance between them. Murdock rolled his eyes. "Excuse
me," Face said, oozing charm as they drew close, "would
you care to join me for a lovely lunch? I don't like crowds. Maybe
we could, um, find someplace a bit more quiet -- hmmm?" he
gazed at her expectantly.
"Drop dead," she said with such vehemence
he did not doubt her Irish lineage. She brushed passed them and
entered the hardware store next door. Face straightened his tie
and he, and a somewhat bemused, Murdock entered the diner.
Face walked up to the counter -- "Yes, I need
five hamburgers, four large fries, two large Dr. Peppers, one
Coke, and one large milk." While they sat on the stools and
Murdock continued to tell all about the exciting birthday party
he was throwing for Billy, Face looked around the bar to be sure
that there were no traps. Satisfied that they weren't in any danger
and tired of anything relating to Billy's birthday party, he decided
to change the subject. "Murdock, I sure am glad we didn't
have to fly this time -- I'm really tired of BA being in such
a foul mood, it's worse when we fly."
"Speaking of which, next time you scam us a
plane, Faceman, -- it really is gonna have to better than the
last one. I haven't seen a plane in that bad a shape since we
went down to Mexico to shoot that movie that you starred in as
Lake Charles. It was closer to a flyin' coffin and it sounded
and flew like an asthmatic chicken. Say, do you know that the
world record for the longest chicken flight was thirteen seconds?"
Before Face could answer "no, he didn't" Murdock continued:
"You know I think that purple party hats would be great,
they'd match Billy's collar, don't you think?" Murdock returned
to his former subject. Unsuccessful, Face only nodded in agreement
and submission. "Maybe some . . ." Murdock was interrupted
as an elderly man was shoved up against the window by a teenager
that appeared to their expert eyes to be high on something, probably
crack cocaine, knowing its current popularity. The kid was demanding
all of the man's money. They walked over and took him firmly by
the arms, careful not to hurt him, and pulled him away from the
man at the window. "Are you O.K., sir?" Murdock asked
out of concern for the man. The boy tried to fight their grip,
but the rush of the drug had almost passed and he collapsed between
"Thank you, gentleman. I appreciate your assistance,
I am well, thank you. I'm not as fast or as strong as I used to
be. I was at a distinct disadvantage. Again, I thank you."
About that time the sheriff's large deputy walked in and thanked
them as well, cuffed the still unconscious boy and threw him over
his shoulder and walked out. No one seemed surprised at all.
Face and Murdock both raised their eyebrows as they
turned back toward the counter. It was a bit unusual but effective
-- after all this was a small town. They could hear a man in the
back of the diner saying, "If he was my kid, I'd blister
his behind." A woman could be heard saying, "This is
the fourteenth time that I have been here that Charlie has had
to carry Johnny out because of his behavior -- where do these
kids get this stuff -- you know he takes cocaine and marijuana?"
Taking the sacks that contained the Team's lunch,
Murdock, quiet for the moment, and Face turned and left. After
leaving the diner, Murdock was the first to speak, "It's
scarier than some of the stuff we faced in 'Nam. How can this
happen? These are just young kids, more and more everyday getting
addicted, ruining their lives before they even have the chance
to do something with them." Both shook their heads and arrived
at the van at the same time that Hannibal returned, and then BA
stepped out of the station. After he had finished paying he had
chatted with the attendant / mechanic about cars and mechanics
since the rest of the team was not back yet. As they began to
get in, Murdock paused instead of going right to seat behind the
driver. Face, hungry and ready to eat, prodded, "What's wrong
Murdock? Billy trying to find a place to bed-down? Hurry up, will
"Uh, Colonel?" Murdock called as Hannibal
stepped up onto the running board and lit a cigar.
"Yes, Captain?" he called from just outside
"We don't happen to have a pacifier around here,
do we?" he asked as he dropped into his seat and put part
of their lunch behind his seat. Hannibal slid into his seat and
BA returned to his place in the driver's seat. Face could see
a basket between the captain style seats as he stepped up onto
the running board and munched on a french fry.
"What's that?" he asked, as he swallowed
another french fry and sat down into his usual seat.
Murdock glanced up from whatever it was, "It's
"A BABY!" the other three asked in unison.
Hannibal and BA whirled around to see from the front. Face dropped
the sack and the almost eaten french fry into his lap, glad that
there was nothing at all in his mouth at that moment because he
might have choked.
"Where did it come from?"
"Face, do you know any girls around here very
"No, Hannibal, I don't know anyone around here,
I don't think."
"Look, here's a note." At that revelation,
the van became silent as Murdock displayed the envelope. But the
loudness of their response to this surprise had awakened the infant.
It began to cry and scream.
"Captain," Hannibal voiced over the crying
child, "give me the envelope. Somebody, quieten that baby.
"No, not me, Hannibal. I work with little kids,
but not babies." BA responded. "Maybe the crazy fool
can make it quiet."
"Uh, Hannibal, I don't think that Billy would
want me holding a baby, he might be jealous. Besides, there aren't
many babies in the VA psyche ward, you know what I mean?"
"Face, pick it up." Hannibal made it an
"But, Colonel . . ." he protested.
"Do it, Lieutenant," Smith ordered. Face
put the sack of food that had fallen into his lap behind his seat
and reached down into the basket and gently placed one hand under
the baby's neck and the other creating a seat for the baby and
drew it near his chest and cradled it for a moment just as he
had seen many of his former girlfriends do just after they told
him that they were dating again after a bad marriage. He hated
it when that happened.
The baby quit crying and began to coo quietly. Hannibal
grinned -- "You're a natural, kid." Face gave his famous,
crooked, 'thanks a lump' grin at that. Hannibal continued, "Now,"
addressing the baby, quietly, "let's see what you have to
say. Hmmm," as he opened the letter all was silent and expectant,
" 'I recognized you as the A-Team and your helpfulness in
the diner confirmed your innocence in my eyes. You have helped
many people. Please help me. This is my daughter, Jordan. You
must take her with you. Her life is in danger. Please protect
her and find her a good home. God bless you all."
"Who knew we were here?"
"Who would recognize us like that?"
"What happened in the diner? "How did she
get into the van?"
"Could it be a trap? I mean, would the government
stoop to using a baby to catch us?"
"She couldn't have walked in here by herself,
you know what I mean?"
"Of course not, fool."
"Where's your mommy and daddy, Jordan? Who are
" 'Jordan', huh?" Their question tumbled
over each other, quietly this time.
The team drove down two blocks to a small motel.
"Face you go check us in. We'll wait here." Hannibal
"Right, Colonel. Uhh, what about Jordan?"
Face looked sheepishly at Smith indicating the bundle he still
cradled so gently.
"Give 'er to Murdock." Hannibal quickly
responded. A shocked and somewhat horrified look passed across
Murdock's features. He paled.
"I d-don't want to hurt her, ac-accidentally,"
he stuttered a bit. "I mean, what if I drop her?" Face
"It's okay, Murdock," feeling that he was
some kind of expert compared to the rest, "just hold her
like this." He indicated the way he held Jordan. He carefully
passed her across the short distance between them. Murdock took
her more carefully than he would have taken nitroglycerin, cradling
her as Face had done only moments before. Jordan had been sleeping.
She awoke at the motion, but made no noise. Her pale blue eyes
looked up into his and she smiled a slimy, toothless, yet winning
smile. His fear of accidentally hurting her melted away as he
realized that he could never hurt her.
"Look, she's smiling at me," Murdock pronounced
with his voice full of wonder and relief.
"I'm gonna go check us in now," Face announced
needlessly as he opened the sliding van door and stepped out into
the April sunshine. He slid the door shut behind him and soon
disappeared into the office.
"We better try to find out who her mother and
father are," Hannibal declared. "It doesn't make sense.
Why would her life be in danger? If her life is, in fact, in danger
then it seems that her parents must be in danger as well. If that's
true, why didn't they ask us for help for the whole family since
they obviously knew who we are. Too many things just don't add
up," Hannibal thought out loud as he puffed on his cigar;
the smoke swirled out the window, carried by the cool spring breeze.
"I think we'd better check this thing out."
All was quiet in the van -- even Jordan for the moment.
"What we do now, Hannibal?" BA asked, breaking
"We find out what's going on," Smith responded.
"Uhh, Colonel, I think we'd better find some
diapers pretty soon. She's wet. I mean REAL wet. 'fore too long,
we gonna have a big mess," Murdock said from his place. "Then
we need some formula or somethin' to feed 'er. Hamburgers and
Billy's dog food just won't cut it." Jordan was very awake
now. She had a wonderful temperament, especially considering how
really wet she was. She waved her hands at Murdock's face, cooed,
and burbled. Occasionally she'd giggle and try to say words, then
give up and put her hand in her mouth and kick her ever active
Murdock began to try his hand at the "entertain
the baby business." He'd cross his eyes, shake his head like
a dog, and touch his nose with his tongue. He was frequently rewarded,
to his great pleasure, with a giggle or total fascination, in
which Jordan would stare at him wide eyed. "Who'd give you
a name like 'Jordan'? That name is too boyish for a pretty lady
like yourself." He paused a moment, "I think I'll call
you Jody." He laid her down flat on his lap so that he could
make shapes with his hands. "How about a butterfly, Jody?"
Jordan burbled a giggle. Inspired, Murdock continued. "Look,
Jody, a huey." Murdock twirled on finger in the air form
the fuselage of the helicopter with his other hand. He made a
rapid thdt-thdt-thdt sound imitating the sound of the blades.
"Look, Jody, a Jolly Green." He made the fuselage bigger,
and made a lower pitched thdt-thdt-thdt sound. "Look, Jody,
it's a . . ."
"Shut up, fool. She don't know what all them
different helicopters are. And her name is Jordan, not Jody,"
BA fussed from the front seat. Next to him Hannibal sighed as
he continued to puff thoughtfully on his ever-present cigar.
"I wasn't gonna do a 'chopper this time. It
was gonna be the Spruce Goose -- so there. And you know, BA, you
shouldn't say "shut up, fool" in front of the baby.
In all my experience at the VA, I've learned that what a child
is exposed to at a young age can affect it for the rest of it's
life. And . . ."
"I said, 'Shut up, FOOL!'" BA interrupted
"Still shouldn't do it -- right, Jody?"
"Blahh-eeeemph-babbab," Jordan commented
as she grabbed for Murdock's nose.
"Blabphemt-blblblab," he responded in kind.
"Finally, someone who can talk with the crazy
man and understand," BA commented under his breath.
At that moment Face stepped out of the office, holding
the key to their room in his left hand and running his right hand
through his light, sandy brown hair.
He glanced around, habitually, for trouble. He strolled
up to Hannibal's front passenger window, jabbing his thumb toward
the back of the motel he said, "We're in room 117 in the
back. Here's the key," he said, handing it to the Colonel.
"You know, it was strange. In a small town usually people
ask a whole lot more questions. Everybody knows everything in
a small town. Nobody tried to start up a conversation to find
out anything." He shrugged and shook his head as he opened
the slide door on the van and dropped into his seat behind Hannibal.
He turned and gazed amusedly at the show Murdock was continuing
to put on for Jordan. He turned his attention to BA and said,
"Just back up and go left around that corner, BA," Face
directed, pointing to his right. "It's room 117," he
finished. Then returned to his observation of the performance.
When they arrived at their assigned room, Hannibal
ordered, "Face, get the food and the baby's basket. Murdock,
bring Junior, there." He paused for an instant. "Face
"Yes, Colonel?" Face responded.
"Bring one of your extra shirts," he finished.
"One of my shir? . . .No, Hannibal, not my new
shirts. That's not fair. I mean those shirts are expensive,"
"Face," Hannibal interrupted, "you
always have more extra clothes than the rest of us. You shouldn't
mind sharing with Junior. Come on guys, let's go." Hannibal
left with the key and he and BA entered and check out the hotel
room. No listening devices, no bombs, no bad guys with guns.
Back at the van, Face pulled out his least favorite,
plaid, linen shirt and grabbed the wheat-gold wicker basket that
had held Jordan until they had found her. The flannel-like white
blanket spilled over the edges - "we'll have to take a look
in here for clues -- AFTER lunch" he thought. He and Murdock
proceeded and entered the motel room.
As he walked in, Face laid the food bags onto the
multi-purpose table, next to which he set the basket. He then
reluctantly tossed his shirt to Murdock, who had laid Jordan on
the counter and began to search for a way to remove the wet diaper.
"Uhh, guys, I could use some help over here." Murdock
called to the others. "I got it off, now what?" They
gathered near Jordan and Murdock. Jordan seemed amused at their
inexperience at changing diapers and the confusion that it was
"Linen? Face, it's gonna go right through that
fabric," Hannibal observed.
"What if, once we get the shirt," Face
sighed, "on her, we ummm," he looked around, "we
can cover the diaper part with part of the new garbage sack at
the bottom of the can. Then it will at least look like the other
one, sort of."
"Anybody got any safety pins or somethin'?"
"Safety-pins?" BA asked. "I got some
staples and a staple gun in the van." He began to explain
"WE CAN'T staple it to Jody. It'd be cruel,"
"Shut up, Fool. Let me finish." BA snapped.
"What's your plan, BA?" Hannibal asked.
"I say we staple the sides, shirt and plastic,
with the staple gun then, bend the points down with the pliers.
What you think, Hannibal? " BA finished.
"Do it, BA" Hannibal replied. When this
was accomplished, everybody washed up and began to eat. They had
laid Jordan in the middle of the bed when they started. About
half way through the meal, she began to cry.
"She has to be hungry," Face announced.
"Five minutes or so, I'll be finished. I'll take her and
Murdock and we'll get some diapers and some formula or somethin'."
Jordan continued to cry.
"Here, she was quiet earlier when you picked
her up, Face. I'll keep her quiet 'til you're done," Hannibal
volunteered. He walked over and scooped her up into his arms.
Jordan continued to whimper, but it was more subdued.
"Thanks, Hannibal," Face said. Hannibal
lit his cigar and carried her across the room toward the rest
of the guys. Almost immediately Jordan began to cough and cry.
She tried to rub her face, her eyes watering.
"Hannibal, give her to me," Face demanded
as he took the baby.
"Hannibal, that isn't good for the baby. Why
don't you take it outside?," Murdock said. Looking to BA
for support, Smith found none.
"Much as I hate to admit it, you're right, guys.
I'll finish it outside. You know I need my cigar to think,"
Hannibal said, sounding betrayed. He knew he'd better go outside
if he was going to smoke. He didn't want to hurt Jordan. He'd
lit the cigar out of habit. He turned and left the room.
Face finished off his hamburger with his next bite.
Jordan continued to fuss in his arms. He decided that it was time
to inspect the basket much more closely. "Here, BA, take
`er, will ya? I'm gonna check out the basket." BA took Jordan
carefully. Cradling her in his arms, he couldn't resist tickling
her under the chin. She grinned briefly at him before she became
preoccupied with the gold metal chains that hung low on his chest.
Upon her smile, BA giggled. Face smiled to himself. Murdock and
Face often felt that BA's rough exterior covered his child-like
joy, that was demonstrated on brief occasions when he would giggle.
Face continued to dig through the basket, examining
every item closely for any clue as to Jordan's predicament. He
began by removing the blanket and inspecting it; he could find
nothing attached to it. Meanwhile, Murdock stood with both hands
in his pockets watching BA entertain Jordan. Face laid the blanket
on the table, next to the basket. He continued to examine the
inside of the now empty basket. He searched fruitlessly for false
sides or bottom or anything hidden. He found nothing. "Guess
it's time to go to the next town, and find Jordan here,"
Face said pointing at the baby, "something to eat."
Just then Hannibal sauntered in and, finished with his cigar,
he took the baby from B.A. It was, after all, his turn; although
his mind reeled at the thought, in his heart he was kind of getting
used to having her around. "Face you and Murdock walk over
to the town hall and find out who Jordan here really is. Any other
piece of information would be helpful. BA and I will go on to
the next town and get her something to eat and some diapers,"
Hannibal doled out the responsibilities.
"Hannibal, it's not that simple - we don't know
if she was born here. We don't have any idea how old she is .
. ." Face started.
"She is a baby. Somewhere between a day and
two years, I'd guess," Murdock suggested in a helpful tone
of voice. Face rolled his eyes at the comment and grinned his
crooked, "thanks a lump" grin, and turned his gaze back
toward Hannibal but his focus remained the bundle Hannibal held
`Who could possibly want to hurt something so wonderful?
Jordan, what's *your* story?' Face thought to himself.
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