Guess it’s Watercolor Wednesday this week! Thought I’d try doing a watercolor landscape for Leverage featuring the OT3. This is a scene from the end of The Last Dam Job… I wonder if Eliot ever got his Eliot signal, even if they didn’t get to keep the bat cave.
Watercolor and gouache on 5x7″ watercolor paper. The figures are just over 1cm tall.
Thanks to @ober-affen-geil for the suggestion!
We agreed we all change. Better or worse, we change together.
hi yes the rundown job is a love letter to the ot3 and I will not hear otherwise
“We agreed we’d all change. Better or worse. We’d change together.”
those are freaking marriage vows oh my god
“That means I would have to be thinking about you and Parker, which I never do!” Eliot. Eliot, Eliot, Eliot. This was such an unnecessary thing to clarify, Eliot. You’ve got the hots for your best friends, Eliot.
Process gif of the watercolor that I did of the “claymore” scene from Leverage’s The Rundown Job, featuring the OT3. First frame is the stick-figure doodle I started with in my notepad when I was asked for an “upside-down Parker” drawing. Link to the original post here; step descriptions below the cut.
Many many thanks to @ober-affen-geil for asking for an upside-down Parker and walking me through how to turn my wip cellphone pics into a gif! I’ll try to take my wip pictures more intentionally from now on.
🎶 the whole place was dressed to the nines, and we were dancin’, dancin’ like we’re made of starlight 🎶
The last sentence caught my attention.
Mr. Rogers, is that what you call the OT3?
We all know what pretzels means. Beer would be a great moniker for Eliot.
Do you ever worry that the OT3 is going to get swept to the side in the reboot? When Leverage ended, it was the OT3 who were continuing their work. Together.
Nate and Sophie had retired.
Now we’re getting this reboot and while Tim Hutton is not returning, we’re still getting Gina Bellman, Noah Wylie, the actress playing Brenda (I’m sorry I don’t remember her name atm), Aldis will be part time at best.
I don’t mean to rain in this parade, and I know if anyone can make this work and come together it’s Dean and John and their incredible team, but I don’t want all this extra stuff.
I want our OT3 being chaotic and thriving. I will take Brenda because she’s Hardison’s sister and there needs to be more positive representation of PoC who are LGBTQA community.
But we better get plenty of OT3 moments and I want to clarify OT3. Not Hardison/Parker with hints of Eliot. I want Hardison/Eliot kissing. Parker/Eliot on a date, Hardison/Eliot/Parker in bed.
You made the OT3 canon and you swear they are safe. Prove it!
“For better or worse we change together” sounds a hell of a lot like marriage vows.
Eliot: Parker, Hardison and I had to go interview a priest. He started talking about how Halloween is the day of the devil.
Eliot: That’s when Parker said “oh an entire day for me?”
Eliot: Pretty sure we’ve been excommunicated
Eliot, videotaping Hardison and Parker: Day three of quarantine and they’re trying to make a gender reveal cake
Eliot: Nobody’s pregnant
(3x02 The Reunion Job - Coda Fic)
(Read on AO3)
Eliot doesn’t care that no one bothers to respond to him once the mission’s over. He’s out of the office, he got to take his frustrations out with a few deserving human punching bags, and he’s fine. Let them have their fun… he had his. This is what he does. He doesn’t need all that.
He definitely doesn’t need to keep dwelling on how he heard Hardison ask Parker to dance before he pulled the com out of his ear and went back to Nate’s. He had plenty of those moments of his own back in actual high school, let the nerds have theirs now if they want. Whatever.
The problem is: the more he thinks about it, the more he realizes that they were never moments he cared about. Even now, names and faces and, well, other assets, blended together in his memory, not worthy of any real distinction. Much like every other aspect of his life, it was always about the challenge, about the conquest, and then moving on. It never meant anything.
He definitely doesn’t need to dwell on the implications of that line of thinking, that if he were there with Parker or Hardison it would’ve meant something.
Half of a six-pack later, Hardison and Parker get back first.
“Where are Their Royal Highnesses?” Eliot asks, eyebrow raised when Hardison closes the door behind him.
“Couldn’t pull them away from their adoring fans,” Hardison quips. “So we left them for a few extra dances. Something tells me they didn’t even notice.”
Eliot lets out a ‘humpf’ sort of noise, because Nate and Sophie aren’t the only ones wrapped up in themselves tonight. Parker and Hardison haven’t stopped sharing these quick, knowing glances since they walked in, and even though it’s barely been a full minute Eliot’s had more than enough of it.
Grabbing the handle of the six-pack to take his last 3 beers with him, he’s surprised to feel Parker’s hand reach out with a firm grip around his wrist. “Thought you were going to show us how it’s done, Mr. ‘I’m The One Who Went to School Dances’?” she says.
“What?” Eliot asks, tensing instinctively when the lights dim, only for an almost disco-ball effect to project from the television screens on the wall accompanied by the opening chords of a slow rock ballad.
“You aren’t getting out of dancing with us that easily,” Hardison elaborates. Parker’s already leading Eliot by the wrist, which she still hasn’t let go of, over to where Hardison stands waiting expectantly.
“Us?” Eliot repeats, eyebrow raised.
“Well, on the way back we argued over which one of us would get to dance with you, and I won, but I also accidentally made Hardison cry so I felt bad and we agreed we’d just all dance together.”
“I did not-” Hardison starts, but one narrow-eyed glare from Parker has his lips snapping shut instead.
Hardison slides his right arm behind Parker’s back and holds his left hand out for Eliot to take. Parker holds her right hand out to do the same, and Eliot just stands there looking between them as if this must be some sort of joke.
“I don’t need your pity dance,” Eliot says, unable to find it in himself to feel anything other than defensive. That had to be it. He knows he made a few comments over the comms about no one checking in on him but he meant for them to sound sarcastic… maybe more of his actual disappointment bled through than he thought.
He knows he doesn’t quite fit in here. Nate and Sophie have their cat and mouse game history. Hardison and Parker have their secret spy stuff, with covert hacking and undetectable break-ins. All he has is violence and a short fuse. He’s the muscle, and if they didn’t need him he would’ve been gone a long time ago. He’s fine with it. Really. He doesn’t need this. He doesn’t even want it.
Except that doesn’t explain the way his heartbeat rises more staring down Hardison and Parker than it had fighting off guys twice his size earlier.
“I don’t pity anyone,” Parker says, motioning more exaggeratedly with her hand now, shoving it forcefully in his direction to take. “It’s the three of us. Always. Out there, in here. Doesn’t matter.”
The way Parker says it is the way Parker says anything - blunt and honest, which is the only reason why Eliot doesn’t doubt her words. It’s the reason instead of going back to his beer Eliot shrugs off the gray hoodie he still has on so that he’s left with just a tan flannel and his red-orange undershirt for better mobility before holding his hands out to take Hardison and Parker’s.
There’s a slight frown on his face at the immediate realization that his hands, rough and calloused, are such a stark contrast to the smooth, soft skin of the ones holding them… but even Eliot can’t frown for long when he looks up to see Hardison grinning like a damn fool and Parker giving that excited little half-smile he normally only sees her with before she’s about to jump off a building.
Without another word, they’re moving, perfectly in sync from the first step, in a three-person waltz that shouldn’t work as well as it does.
It’s perfect. Which is why he has to say something and ruin it, before something else does, not trusting the moment to last.
“This is a little ridiculous,” he points out. “No one waltzes at school dances.”
“Oh? Would you prefer something else?” Hardison asks, dropping Eliot’s hand. For a second Eliot is convinced that he did exactly what he set out to do - kept the people he cares about at arm’s length - and is surprised at the immediate disappointment he feels at succeeding. A moment later Hardison brings his hand back up to grab Parker’s, stepping closer so that Eliot is now sandwiched between them, Parker pressed against his chest, Hardison against his back.
They’re a comforting weight on all sides of him as they slow in pace down to a gentle sway back and forth. The knot in Eliot’s stomach over the assumption that he fucked everything up dissolves as quickly as it formed.
“Better?” Parker asks, her eyes searching his face to read his reaction, to make sure that it’s honest. He knows that if it isn’t, if he really wants to push them away and end this - whatever this is - he could do it and she’d let him. One hint that he doesn’t want this and she’s gone. They both are.
It’s tempting. Old habits die hard and this job would be a hell of a lot easier to do if he didn’t let himself get too attached in ways he shouldn’t be… then Hardison leans his head down just enough to rest his cheek against the back of Eliot’s head while they sway and the little stutter Eliot’s heart does tells him it’s a bit late for keeping himself in check as far as attachments go.
“Better,” Eliot agrees.
In fact, when Parker tilts her head to rest her cheek on Eliot’s shoulder, the three of them moving just a little bit closer in the process, Eliot might grudgingly admit to himself it’s the best he’s felt in a long time.
An excerpt from a currently untitled WIP, but @alicenwrites needed to see this today, and I wanted to help. So here’s a little ot3 fluff.
He was brought from his thoughts as fingers trailed through the hair at the back of his head. He turned his attention from blindly watching the television to see Parker leaning over the back of the couch. One hand was trailing through his hair while the other moved to slide along his chest lightly.
“Hey,” he sort of purred, closed his eyes briefly at the feeling her fingers elicited before opening them again to look at her.
“Hey, yourself,” she replied, leaning to brush their lips together lightly. “Kitchen’s all done. I’m gonna take a bath,” she kissed him lightly once again before pulling away and trailing her hands from his body to run along the back of the couch as she moved off towards their bedroom and the master bath. “You wanna come read to me?”
Eliot smiled slowly. He loved this side of Parker; who loved to touch softly, and steal kisses, and just be near him and Hardison in any way. Hardison had the better, softer, reading voice, but Eliot was charmed into a warm fuzziness when Parker wanted him to do something as simple as read to her; so he nodded a bit, finished off his beer, and then got up from the couch.
She was puttering around their bedroom when he’d finished tossing his bottle in the trash and followed her into the room. He smiled a bit and moved into the bathroom to start her bath.
Eliot had always paid attention to those around him; evidence in the fact that he’d sent Parker the venus fly trap and Sophie the roses that one time. He knew what his team liked, what would relax them, what would drive them crazy and make them happy. So he knew how to prepare the bath for her. He knew that she didn’t like the water scorching hot like he did, but warm and relaxing like an embrace. He knew she liked the softer scents of lavender and lemon, so he got to work making her a scented bubble bath while she undressed in their room.
When the tub had been halfway filled, Parker walked silently into the bathroom, where Eliot was swirling the water around to waft the scents into the air. He’d lit some aromatherapy candles and placed them around the room, offering more warmth to the bathroom.
“Mmm,” she hummed, running smooth hands up the planes of his back. Eliot could hear the smile in her tone, “how do you always just know?”
“S’a gift.” Eliot replied, turning to gently scoop her up from the floor and twisting back around to carefully lower her into the warm bath. “I like it when you’re relaxed and happy.” He shrugged a little bit, moving his hands to gently gather her hair up and tying it into a loose knot on top of her head with the hair tie around his wrist.
“I like it when you do things like this,” she murmured, eyes closed as he fixed her hair. Once it was finished and Eliot had removed his hands, she leaned back and sank down into the warm bath with an appreciative hum of approval.
“I know,” Eliot told her softly, moving out of the room for a moment to grab the current book that Parker was reading.
It had always sort of surprised him that she liked to read a variety of different things, but mostly stuck to young adult stories wild with romance, fantasy, and excitement weaved throughout. Eliot had to admit that when he read to her or over her shoulder while she snuggled into his side, he got a little into the story sometimes too. He couldn’t help it; he was kind of a sucker for stories that ended up happily ever after, even when there was conflict, danger, and wildness along the way.
He moved back into the bathroom and settled himself on the floor next to the tub. He’d lain a folded towel down for some cushion to sit on, leaning his back up against the side of the tub. He drew one knee up and dropped the book down against his thigh, holding it open with one thumb between the pages.
And he began to read, hearing Parker shift in the tub to lean over the edge next to him. Her head was pillowed on one curved elbow while her other hand moved to let her fingers drift through the hair at the back of his head and neck once again.
( a little skippage of plotlines here….)
Hardison said his goodbyes to Nana and hung up the phone with another frown. What in the hell could have his Nana sounding so shaken?
He walked through their bedroom and stood in the doorway of the bathroom, letting his eyes take in the sight of Parker lounging in a bubble bath, arm pillowed on the edge of the tub, fingers in Eliot’s hair as he read aloud from her book on the floor next to the tub.
Fuck, they were breathtaking.
Hardison was a little disappointed in himself when his presence drew their attention from their warm and comforting little bubble and they both looked up at him. Their soft smooth smiles turned into more serious expressions at what he could only assume was his posture and face.
“What is it?” Eliot asked, letting the book fall closed on his thumb. Parker’s fingers stilled on the back of Eliot’s neck; Hardison could see how her fingers had slid around the back of Eliot’s neck at the shift in atmosphere.
“My Nana just called,” Hardison told them with a sigh, “we need to head out to her house as soon as possible.”
“Like, right this second soon as possible,” Parker asked, “or in the morning soon as possible?”
“Like, she called to ask for our help and I think we need to get there as soon as humanly possible.” Alec replied. He tapped the edge of his fist against the door frame. “I’m sorry to interrupt your bubble bath reading hour, but we should pack.”
Parker let out a disappointed sigh, “I like bubble bath reading hour.”
“There’ll be more, Darlin.” Eliot murmured, turning and brushing his lips along her jaw, then her forehead. He shifted and let the book fall closed before he set it on the counter by the sink. He followed his own momentum around and moved to dip his arms into the tub and pull Parker out of the water with such fluid movement that Hardison was a little astounded; he was always astounded by the way Eliot moved,though, if he was completely serious.
Once Eliot had lifted Parker out of the tub, he sat himself on the closed toilet seat and set her in his lap, reaching for a towel to start methodically drying her off with soft and gentle strokes of the soft turkish cotton.
There it is. A little sneak peak of what im workin’ on. I hope it helped, darlin. 🥺😘
Also, @anduril made me do it.
Quick sketch of that classic OT3 shot from Rundown Job (from before I got the good pencils).