Midnight at the Oasis

Shay Sheridan

A short "MUNCLE" Community challenge-fic incorporating a list of 20 words (bolded).

Napoleon ran.

A sharp twinge nearly brough him to his knees, but he staggered upright. He tried to ignore the throbbing in his injured shoulder – it was just a flesh wound, after all, and he'd come by it in a particularly ignominious fashion. As Illya had predicted, Napoleon's rampant lust had indeed gotten him into trouble with the Emir, who hadn't appreciated Napoleon making advances on Wife #11…or was she #12? It was almost funny. You wouldn't think a guy married to so many women would trouble himself over a wife so far down the list.

He caught a breath, fighting off a sudden stitch in his side. That Emir was pretty ungrateful – after all, UNCLE had just intervened to separate his country from THRUSH's grasp. At the very least he might've offered Napoleon and Illya a couple of wives for a couple of hours – now that would've been gratitude!

Not that Illya would've agreed. That boy was decidedly a stick in the mud when it came to carnal entertainments.

Though it was night, the sand was still warm under Napoleon's bare feet. Lucky for international relations he hadn't been wearing his gun when the Emir's men burst into the bedchamber; unluckily for Napoleon, he hadn't been wearing anything at all. Thus he found himself in his current state, running through the desert with a stab wound in the arm, stark naked but for his pinky ring. Trust a woman to get me in trouble, he thought darkly. Illya's right – girls are dangerous.

Maybe it served him right, for submitting to his desires virtually under the eyes of the Emir. Sneaking around like a, a – well, like a spy – just to get laid. Not like there was a specific code of ethics he'd violated; a spy did what a spy did, with very little moral debate about it. Though he supposed he'd have to admit it was in rather bad taste, as well as dangerous.

Speaking of dangerous…where was that partner of his? Illya should've been waiting for him outside the gates, but in the dark he hadn't seen anything short of the occasional camel. As good as Illya's disguises were, he'd yet to attempt passing himself off as a dromedary.

Dammit. The sand was warm, but the air was getting decidedly cool, and Napoleon shivered. Naked in the desert was not a good plan, day or night. For one thing, there were scorpions, for another, there were–

Sand crunched to his left and Napoleon slid to a stop, his hand automatically reaching for…

"Napoleon." Illya detached himself from the shadows. "Well. What's all this?" Against the bronze makeup caking his face his teeth glimmered whitely as his mouth stretched into a smile. "I'm certain there's a reason you are…ah, au naturel…? I can hardly wait to hear your explanation."

"Illya," Napoleon gritted his teeth. "If you tell Waverly about this–"

"Would I do that?" Illya said in feigned indignation. "The very idea! But one thing I must know…when I approached, what were you planning to do? It almost seemed as if you were reaching for a gun. But you seem to have lost it somewhere, haven't you?"

"Why, Illya," Napoleon said smoothly, "you're mistaken. I lost my weapon…" He reached down with his uninjured hand. "…this is my gun."

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