Fandom: Breaking Bad, post episode 3.13, "Full Measure."
Characters: Gus, Walt, Mike
Word Count: 334 words
Notes: For the Donut Drabble challenge at breaking_bad.
Gus sits across the large table from Walt, his body still, calm. His expression betrays nothing of his thoughts; he has long schooled himself to project a mild countenance. But those who know him, know that a cold current of danger hums through him.
Walt – his employee, his partner, his rival – is just as calm, just as still. When they first met, Walt’s anger crackled just below the surface, his insecurity and pride the spark that easily touched off an explosion. Gus had used that to his advantage more than once.
But over time, Walt has learned to control his anger… to a point. As calm as he seems now, he is volatile, unpredictable. These traits are a flaw – which was why Gus has decided to remove Walt from his business model. Gus failed. Walt’s unpredictability saved him. This time.
Gus will not fail a second time.
Suddenly, Walt breaks the silence. “Take one.” He cuts his eyes toward the box of donuts in the middle of the table.
Gus shakes his head once, polite. “No thank you.”
Walt smiles, his lips a grim slant. “Do you think I’ve poisoned them?”
“No,” Gus says, though he wouldn’t put it past Walt. “I must be careful with my sugar intake.”
“A shame.” Walt reaches over to take a blue-frosted star from the box. He takes a large bite, then slowly wipes the flakes of icing left on his lips, all the while keeping his eyes on Gus. “Life is already too short.”
Gus does not break Walt’s stare. “As you well know, Walter.”
A long-suffering sigh sounds from the man leaning against the wall to Gus’ left. “You two,” Mike says. “Does everything have to be a chess game?” He gestures to the pastry box. “Even breakfast?”
Walt smiles again, though it does not touch his eyes. Gus remains impassive. Neither man breaks eye contact with the other.
“I’ll take one, then,” Mike growls, stalking over to pluck a chocolate cream-filled from the box. “Jesus.”