by laurel

Notes: Inspired by a trip to the dentist. Does everyone think about this stuff or am I just weird?

Part of the foursome universe. It follows: A Christmas wish, a new love, that's what friends are for, Popsicle toes, twister, tangled up in blue, the list, jazz singer, debut, meet the neighbors, war games, the art of seduction, summer's end, what are you doing New Year's Eve?

Spoilers: Up to season eight.

The pretty blonde in scrubs led Alex to the semi-private cubicle. She smiled at him sweetly to put him at ease. Not like she was ready to shove that nasty drill root-deep. The hygienist patted the chair and motioned him to sit.

He sat down warily, trying to hide his rising fear. He'd been a soldier in the war against the alien colonists, survived countless beatings, been shot at and stabbed, had his arm hacked off and encountered the alien oil with nary a bad side effect, but going to the dentist was nerve-wracking.

He grumbled when Walter reminded him of his appointment. Why did he have to go? He had beautiful teeth. It was one of his features he'd always liked. They were naturally straight and white. He hadn't had a cavity since he was a kid. Besides all that drilling and the pretty women dressed in scrubs with cartoon characters cavorting across them just freaked him out.

He tried to make himself comfortable in the chair but the damn thing was too soft. He'd have to crack his back after a stint in that cushy faux leather chair.

First came the x-rays. How on earth could anyone justify spending that much money on a couple of pieces of cardboard shoved into his mouth?

Next he was lowered and the bright light shone into his face. Sandy hid her perfect smile behind a mask. Alex wondered if the mask was to protect them from bacteria and blood or just from clients with bad breath.

The light was wickedly bright, unforgiving. He focused his gaze on the ceiling. Calming seascapes covered the walls but unfortunately the ceiling was drab beige with nothing interesting to look at. At the very least they could install one of those flat screen televisions and broadcast movies all day. That would get more people to see the dentist, that's for sure.

She tapped his chin and commanded, "wider." He opened his mouth a quarter of an inch more. Sandy nodded in approval. Instruments of torture entered his vulnerable mouth. She rooted around, scraping at random, humming under her breath to the soft rock music that played throughout the waiting room and the cubicles. The harsh scraping would have made him grit his teeth if her slender fingers weren't shoved in his mouth. Alex wondered if anyone had ever bitten Sandy.

He closed his eyes due to the glare and let her scrape and tap away with her sharp steel implements. His mind began to wander as it invariably did when he was bored and there was nothing to occupy his mind. This usually happened when he was waiting in lines or at the dentist. At least at the doctor's office he could play with the blood pressure cuff or study pictures of human anatomy on the wall and Fox would invariably tell him some gross, disgusting fact about the human body, like the production of phlegm or something. Here there was nothing to play with except for the water fountain where he'd spit out that fluoride crap that always smeared all over his lips so that he resembled a rabid dog.

He thought hard on all sorts of profound questions like: if one conjoined twin drinks alcohol, do they both get drunk? If you put a tape recorder in the forest and a tree falls, will you hear it when it's played back? Could his mouth open any more? Yeah, it could, when he was giving one of his famous hour-long blowjobs. This felt just like that, except no one was getting any pleasure out of it. Well, maybe Sandy was.

If a convenience store is open twenty four hours, why is there a lock on the door? If Christopher Walken makes a cameo appearance in a movie, does it automatically increase the box office take? Why do hot dogs come in packages of a dozen, but the buns only come in bags of eight?

She started polishing his pearly whites with fluoride. God how he hated that crap. It was like gritty sand scouring his mouth and you couldn't get that nasty stuff out completely for hours, no matter how much you gargled.

She suctioned and scraped again then finally aimed water into his mouth and suctioned that away too. He was instructed to gargle and spit.

Sandy pulled off her mask. "Looks good. The x-rays are great. No cavities. Just remember to floss."

"I do when I remember," he replied sheepishly.

"Good. Everything is fine, so I'll go get Dr. Pearce and he'll have a final look at you. In the meantime, here's a new toothbrush and some floss and I'm going to go ahead and book an appointment for twelve months from now."

"Great, thanks." He took the freebies and she left the cubicle. Alex continued to rinse and spit, wiping away the film from his lips with the flimsy lagoon green bib.

Dr. Pearce came to have a look and pronounced him ready to go after a minute of poking around to check his employee's work.

He looked at the receipt as he left the office, tucking his checkbook into his jacket pocket. He shook his head at the list of charges. Well, at least the toothbrush was free.

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