PG (some language)
Disclaimer: Not mine, wish they were though. Thanks to my beta for taking the time for this one, and thanks to Heather F. for the use of Team 8, I appreciate it.
The knock at his door had Miller looking up from his desk. He quickly shut the folder he was looking through and announced that his visitor enter. He sat back in his chair as he watched one of his best new agents walk through the door. In truth, he suspected most of the young girls ability came from heritage and also by special training by one of Denvers finest ATF teams.
Good morning Rachel, he stated with a smile, as the young girl sat down in front of him.
Morning Mr. Miller, she replied, I hate my middle name, she thought to herself. You asked to see me?
Miller pulled out another file from the stack on his desk and began flipping through it, as if looking for something.
Yes, yes I did, he began, I was contacted the other day by Orin Travis. I imagine youre familiar with him?
Well, he asked me if I had any available agents, said he had a small assignment, nothing major, but he needed a teen for it, Miller remarked, looking at the page in the file. Seeing as how Ive got a team on assignment down in Phoenix, I decided maybe I would let you take the job.
The teen smiled excitedly. She had been through the various practice assignments, excelled in them, and had been anticipating the chance to work in the field.
Thank you sir, she stated warmly.
Now, heres the information on what youll be doing, who youre to look for, and so on, he passed over the file he had been looking over. Travis will arrive soon to talk with you about the assignment.
Miller then stood up, followed by the teen, who held the file in her hands like a life saver.
Make us proud, he stated, and then motioned for the teen to leave.
Guess he doesnt like to talk much, she mused as she walked out the door, holding the file in front of her.
Miller sat back down and took a deep breath, he wasnt too sure about Travis idea, but if he wanted Rachel, Miller wasnt going to tell him no. Just so long as Travis remembered to tell Agent Larabee that it was his idea and not Millers.
* * *
Sam continued her journey down the hallway, stopping shortly at the corner desk.
Hi Donna, she greeted the secretary. Can you tell me where Orin Travis is waiting?
Sure darlin, Donna remarked in her strong Louisiana accent, as she looked at a sticky note attached to her computer monitor. Hes not here yet, but he said for you to wait for him in conference room three.
Anytime hon, oh, Donna began, stopping Sam in her tracks, have you talked with Mr. Standish about me?
Sam mentally smacked herself on the forehead before turning around and smiling, Yes, and he said he would get back to me. He was really busy at the time, but Ill try again.
Donna gave a huge smile as the teen turned and walked toward conference room three.
* * *
Sam peered at the file lying on the table, it wasnt as if the information it contained would kill her. She reached over and pulled the file in front of her and opened it up to the first page. The young girl sat staring at the two photos on the page. She couldnt believe her eyes. How could what she was doing involve them?
* * *
I dont think its a good idea pard, Wilmington stated, following his best friend out of his office.
I never said it was, but its not my idea, Chris remarked, heading for the break room. Travis came up with it. We discussed it and its possibly the only way to catch this guy.
Yeah, I understand, but Ive also read the file on this guy, Buck leaned back against the counter as Chris filled his cup. Hes not afraid of killing people, hes killed eight agents. Included in those were John Dunnison and Annie Watts; her parents Chris.
Chris slammed the coffee pot back into place. I know Buck! You dont have to remind me alright! This man killed her parents and many other agents and Travis wants me to allow her to go in undercover. Dont you think Ive been over every possible aspect of the situation?
The agents glanced over to the doorway as two of their fellow agents walked in.
Mr. Larabee, Ive just read the file on our newest case and I was informed that you plan on sending Ezra began but was cut off by the normally quiet sharpshooter.
What the hell are you thinkin Chris? Vin yelled, throwing his arms in the air for emphasis.
Chris calmly picked up his coffee cup and stated icily as he walked past, I wish my men wouldn't question my actions, seeing as how I am leader of this team.
Vin and Ezra both turned their gazes on Buck, who shrugged his shoulders and immediately began after Chris, the other two agents right behind him.
Now Chris, Buck stated, this aint like your everyday bust em bad guys assignment. Were dealing with a murderer, who happens to be one of the biggest arms dealers in the state. What amazes me is that youre willing to send in one of the things thats kept you livin the past couple of months. I mean, you changed after starting the team up, almost back to your old self. Then this little girl came into your life and I saw a flicker of light in your eyes again. Theres nothing that I enjoy more than watching her run into the kitchen in the afternoons just to tell you about her day. Yet, you still plan on sending her into this situation?
Its my decision, Larabee stated as he walked into his office.
I think not, Ezra spoke up, causing the black clad man to turn around to glare at him. Ezra didnt back down though. I believe this should be settled by everyone included in this team. Parliamentary procedure should suffice.
Vin and Buck glanced at the southerner a second in confusion.
We vote, the undercover agent stated simply.
No, this is a dictatorship, and Im the leader. We do as I say," Larabee stated, turning back on his heel and slamming the door in their face.
Chris walked over to his desk and sat his cup down, as he pulled his chair under him. He began flipping through the file in front of him, but he glanced up at a picture on his desk. The portrait portrayed Sam with her arms wrapped around his neck from behind and her legs around his waist. She had just ran and jumped on his back when JD decided to take the picture. Her head was right beside his and both their faces shared a joyous smile.
He picked the picture up and held it in his hands, staring at it long and hard. If only he could turn back time and change decisions he made.
* * *
The teen traced the pictures of her parents with her finger. Slight memories faded in and out and she choked back a few tears. The door opening to the room had her jerking her head up in attention. Travis stood in the doorway, looking from the teen to the file. He quietly shut the door behind him and walked over to sit across from the girl at the table.
I see youve already looked over some of the file, he stated plainly, as the girl looked back at the pictures. Let me explain.
The girl looked up at him with expectant eyes and he sat back in his chair ready to regale the tale behind the teens current position.
You see Samantha, 17 years ago I had two extraordinary agents working for me; John Dunnison and Annie Watts. John was one of the best agents to pass through the Denver office, and whats better than one of a good thing? Two of a good thing. Annie came along and proved once and for all that women could do just as well as men. They met each other during a training exercise, and were always together from then on. Love at first sight. Anyone who was around them knew that they were perfect for one another. So, soon they were married, and with a little help from some prominent people, they were allowed to work in the same office. In that same year, they helped to pull off a major arms deal that sent 10 men to prison, including Alexander Walsh. Soon after the bust Annie found out she was pregnant. Though the decision was tough, both your parents decided to take time off for the pregnancy. They worried about their future. It soon turned to retirement and the office was devastated to see them go. Nine months later, you were brought into the world and John and Annie moved to Georgia to stay close with Annies mother. You lived there for six years, before moving back here. Three years later, I was put in charge of a team of agents, headed up by Chris Larabee. I didnt know it at the time, but Chris had met John and the two had had some very lively conversations. Chris informed me of this and arrangements were made.
Sam took a deep breath not sure of how much she wanted to hear. Travis stopped and looked at her, seeing the confusion.
It was for your own good that you didnt know, he stated.
So, it was all planned, Ezra finding me she began.
No, the man interrupted. That was accidental, and so was Ezras mother knowing your grandmother. Call it fates way of twisting things out of control.
Do they all know?
Yes, but let me finish. Fourteen years after Walsh was sentenced, he was released from jail. It was never proven, but everyone believes he was behind the car accident that killed your parents. After the accident I was determined to find you, so I could get you to your rightful guardian, but they had managed to move you around so much, it was a hard job. If you hadnt had the will to run, then we might not have ever found you. When you were taken to Chris house, he knew right away, but didnt tell the others. Instead he called me, and I came by, tried to make it sound official by asking you questions, but you know Larabees men, they knew something was up. I had managed to tell each one of them by that night about Chris actual legal guardianship.
Sam had flipped through the file some and had stopped on a picture of Alexander Walsh.
So, this assignment is aimed at putting him out of business? she questioned, changing the subject, being too afraid to venture further, knowing full well that there were no tissues near by.
Yes, and we hope to be able to put him away for a long time, the older man agreed.
Okay. What do you need me to do? the teen questioned.
Wait a second, are you sure youre ready, dont you want to think about it?
The teen glared defiantly at the man, I said I was ready. Im ready Mr. Travis; just tell me what I need to do.
* * *
The teen walked down the hallway and briefly stepped into Millers office. The man looked up surprised, not expecting to see the girl again. She pulled out a sealed envelope and placed it on his desk.
Can you please make sure this reaches Agent Deveraux. I understand hes working in Phoenix, but I would really appreciate it, she stated, opening the door back up.
Of course, the older man replied, reaching for the letter.
He glanced at the now closed door once, then back to the letter, and immediately picked up his phone.
* * *
You cant seriously be suggesting that we sit back and do nothing? Ezra remarked to the profiler.
Listen Ezra, the case was assigned to us. Chris knows that, he also knows everything and anything that could go wrong. Just let him handle it, hell make the right decision, Josiah informed the undercover agent.
What if he accidentally makes the wrong decision? People do make mistakes, JD commented, worry in his voice, as he crouched down beside the profilers desk.
Were going to be there, so is Team 8. If anything happens, someone will be right there to grab her, Nathan remarked, trying to calm the youngest agent. Meanwhile, we cant let her know were upset. JD, do you remember your first assignment?
JD looked at the medic, a little confused, Of course I do. I was scared as hell, yet excited.
Would you have felt differently if you had known the people you were working with were worried senseless about the outcome?
Oh, the young agent remarked, realization setting in.
* * *
Hey Val, Sam called to the blonde as she walked out of the building. You headed home?
The blonde girl turned around. Yeah, you need a ride?
If you dont mind, just drop me off at the Federal Building, the brunette responded.
Get in, Valerie told her with a smile.
* * *
The knock on Larabees door had him glancing away from the file quick enough to see Ryan Kelly from Team 8 walk in and shut the door behind him.
Afternoon, the man greeted.
Larabee nodded his head and watched as Kelly silently sat down in front of the desk.
Larabee I just wanted you to know that my team is well aware of the circumstances in this assignment and are duly prepared, Ryan stated, ready to get this out of the way. Well be sure not to let anything happen to her.
I appreciate it Ryan, Larabee remarked, offering his hand for the man to shake.
Kelly shook the black clad mans hand and they both shared a silent nod before Kelly left.
* * *
The teen walked slowly into Team 7s office and watched as the men turned to look at her. She knew what was coming and she wasnt prepared for any of it. She would just have to make do the best she could without emotionally involving herself into the assignment. After all, it was just one bad guy, one bust, nothing major, she just had to keep telling herself that, and maybe, maybe it would seem easier that way. This had nothing to do with her parents, nothing at all. Walsh was suspected of illegal arms dealing. Take him down, and it would rid Colorado of a huge operation. Thats what she was needed for, she needed to go in and purchase some goods.
Sam? the sharpshooter called from his desk.
The teen glanced at the man and he motioned for her to come over to his desk. Vin, I dont want to talk, she thought to herself as she walked over to the Texans desk.
Hey, he began quietly, I just wanted to let you know, Im plannin on takin next Thursday off. You still wanna go rock climbin?
The girl smiled, Yeah, of course.
Tanner nodded his head and the girl headed toward Larabees office. As she walked off, Vin glanced across the room to look at Ezra. The southerner silently nodded his head to the sharpshooter, and then went back to his work.
* * *
Hey, the teen greeted, trying to sound cheerful, as she entered Chris office.
Hey, the reply came, as Larabee continued looking at a file on his desk.
I hear they want me to go in and try to buy a gun off this Walsh guy, the girl stated, sitting down in front of the desk.
Yep, Larabee replied, looking up. You think youre up to it?
The teen laughed, Course Im up to it. Why wouldnt I be?
Dont play innocent with me, Chris thought to himself. You want me to mention it first, fine Ill mention it first.
I guess Travis has already talked with you about it, the leader began, trying to open up the subject.
Yeah, he talked with me back at HQ, the girl responded, twirling her ponytail with her finger.
Ezra was right, he thought to himself as he watched the teen, knowing now she was nervous. Your number one tell sign is twirling your hair. Bet you wouldnt admit it though.
Something you want to talk about? the black clad man questioned.
No, is there something you want to talk about? the girl retorted.
Stubborn, arent we? he mused.
No, I just figured, seeing as how youre twirling your hair, that theres something on your mind, Chris stated.
What? Since when does twirling my hair have to do with anything? the teen queried.
Tell tale sign, one of many, the leader replied with a small grin, as he moved around to sit on the edge of his desk.
Yeah, right, Sam snorted.
Knew it, he thought. You wouldnt admit it for anything. Guess I should try to make amends, shes got to be mad at me for lying. I didnt lie, I just never said anything. Hell, shes gonna be mad at everyone. Poor Vin, he wont get told another secret as long as he lives.
Seriously Sam, I understand if youre mad, I would be too the man began, but was quickly silenced when the teen raised her hand to stop him.
Chris, she stated quietly, I I dont want to talk about it. Not now, can we can we wait until later after things are over, when we have more time to sit down and then discuss it?
Larabee nodded his head, Sure. Now, about the case, you got any major questions?
The teen began to shake her head, but stopped as some thoughts came to mind. Whos gonna be on the ground level? You know, whos gonna have my back if something goes wrong?
Ryans team will be there with us and JD and Nathan will be in the surveillance van. Vin will be somewhere up high, as always, but hell be an important backup. Buck, Ezra, Josiah, and me will be in the shadows, so to speak, on the ground floor. So, if anything does happen, one of us will get you out.
The teen nodded her head, then stood up to leave. Okay, thanks, Im gonna go find something to munch on. I aint ate much today.
Larabee placed both hands on her shoulders and shook them a little. Theres nothing to worry about, okay? We'll have you covered."
Sam nodded her head once more, and Chris pulled her forward enough to plant a kiss on her forehead.
Yeah, but the slime didnt kill your parents, the girl thought to herself.
* * *
If shes acting like nothing happened, then well act like nothing happened, the explosives agent remarked.
Well wait until this is all over, then talk with her about it, Nathan commented. That is, if she wants to talk about it.
Their conversation was silenced when Larabee opened his door and glanced about the outer office.
Meeting in the conference room. Someone grab Sam away from the snack machine, the leader stated, then closed his door again.
As a whole, Team 7 stood up and headed out of their office toward the conference room.
Buck slowed to a stop at the break room and knocked on the wall with his fist, gaining the teens attention.
Conference room, he stated. Lets go.
The girl got up and followed the older man toward the room, finishing off her Snickers as she walked.
* * *
Ryan and Chris had been taking their own sweet time with getting into the conference room. So, as all good agents do, Teams 7 and 8 decided to relieve their boredom.
Twenty bucks says she cant do it, Charlie, of Team 8 stated, holding up the money.
Ezra glanced at Vin, a slight smile creasing his lips. Tanner smirked as well and leaned back in his chair.
Forty says she can, JD commented, noticing the look shared between the conman and the sharpshooter.
Gentlemen, Ezra stated, if were placing bets, lets do this the correct way.
The southerner pulled out a notepad and pencil, Now, whos betting against the girl.
A few different agents from Team 8 advanced, handing Ezra cash, telling him his reason for the bet. Ezra then collected the cash from the rest of the men in the room who were betting against the others.
Now, Mr. Tanner, if you would please do the honors, Standish stated, motioning for Vin to stand up.
Tanner stood up, picked up the handcuffs lying on the table and advanced towards the teen, who had been sitting on the edge of the table, munching on her second Snickers bar.
Can I at least finish my chocolate? she questioned, looking around the room.
Seeing the obvious answer she began to wrap the chocolate back up, only to have Buck reach out and take it from her. She placed her hands behind her back and allowed Vin to place the handcuffs on her.
Tanner made sure not to secure them too tight, knowing the girl needed a little room to move. He patted her shoulder and stepped back. There you go.
I still dont see why Im doing this, the teen commented, glancing around at the men. Ive got smaller hands than all of you. What makes you think I couldnt wriggle free of them?
A few laughs met her ears and she quickly started slipping the extremely loose handcuffs off one wrist. This is Ezra and Vins idea of fun huh? Lets see them slip out of these. By golly, Ill put them on so tight they wont feel their hands after a few minutes.
Within a few seconds she had slipped free of the cuffs and laid them on the table beside her. She reached for her candy bar that Buck was offering back, as Ezra smiled at the moans and groans coming from the losers.
Children, can we get back to work? Chris asked from the doorway, as he and Ryan walked in.
Immediately everyone in the room found a seat and turned to look at their leaders expectantly.
Ryan and Chris went over the floor plans of the building and assigned everyone to their location. They went over many possible outcomes of the situation and where everyone was to go and what they were to do. By the time the meeting was over, everyone was fully aware of how many people were expected to be there and what their jobs were.
After Ryans team had left, Chris informed his men that he was planning on cooking a large meal, if any of them were interested in going out to his place for supper. As always, they all agreed to the free meal, and each left in order to do a few errands before heading out to the ranch.
Ive got some paper work to finish up, Chris remarked to the teen as she sat on the edge of the worktable. Why dont you go ahead with Josiah to the house, Im sure you have something you need to do.
Yeah, I need to finish washing some clothes, thatll take about an hour, after I separate them, the girl replied with a smile. Thanks for the shelves, they really help.
Larabee smiled, Youre welcome.
With his busy work schedule, usually the teen took it upon herself to do the laundry, which not only included her clothes, and Chris, but often the entire teams. Larabee had placed above the washer and dryer a set of shelves, each with a name carved in it. So, whenever Vin needed that red shirt he had left the last time he was there, it would most likely be in his box. It saved the teen a tremendous amount of time, and it worked quite efficiently.
* * *
Luke looked down at the envelope he had been handed. OMalley had brought it down with her when she came from Denver, said Miller had told her to give it to him. He quickly tore it open and began to read it.
June 2, 2004
How are things in Phoenix? Things are going well here, same old thing mostly. School's out finally, as you probably know. It feels like summer though with no more early morning showers to ready myself for school, but now its early morning showers to ready myself for a workout, LOL. Anyways, before I say anything more, this aint like one of those Dear John letters. Its more of a statement, I guess you could say. I just want you to know that Im glad everything with you and Allison is okay. She seems nice, from what I can tell, least shes not extremely weird. This one guy, Jake, he's been talking to me, lol, and some of the girls are trying to get him to ask me out, but that dont mean Ill go out with him. Chris wont let me date anyways, so theres no sense in it. Guys! Nothing but trouble, no offense of course. Youre a great friend Luke, one of the best, and I appreciate everything youve done for me. Hopefully Miller will give me an assignment soon, before I go crazy. Well, sorry this is short, but I just needed to talk with you, so to speak, been kinda quite around here without you. Hope all goes well down there. Talk to you later,
Luke smiled, Boy, I cant wait to get home. I need to get in some crazy excitement before I go completely insane.
* * *
The teen glanced out the window of the suburban to look at the fields, bright from the sun. She took a deep breath and turned to look back at the road.
I never cried, she stated quietly. Is that normal?
Sanchez glanced across to the teen, and smiled to himself inside. Give her time, thats all it takes.
Very normal, he replied.
I just felt that something wasnt right, like it wasnt supposed to end that way, she commented. I never cried, not once. Lord knows I wanted too, but I never could.
Thats understandable, Josiah responded. Sometimes it takes something to happen to trigger those deeply hid emotions, and yet sometimes they might never come around. You still feel the grief, but you cant show it. Its completely normal for anyone your age.
Sam nodded her head and continued starring out the window as the vehicle turned off onto the dirt road that lead to the ranch.
* * *
Sam, I need to ask you a question, the team medic stated, walking to stand in front of the teen, who was seated on the couch.
Youre standing between me and Keith Urban, this better be good, the teen responded seriously, looking up at the man expectantly.
You remember that dark green t-shirt I had the other day, he stated, to which he received a nod from the teen. Ive searched my place all over and can't find it, you havent happened to see it have you?
Did you check your box? she questioned, receiving a nod. How about the dryer?
The medic turned and headed toward the laundry room again, gaining a roll of the eyes from the teen. She glanced back at the TV, in hopes of seeing Keith Urban again, only to look at Buck. Her shoulders dropped and she sighed.
Whatcha watchin? he questioned, moving to sit down beside her on the couch.
CMT, she commented as she watched the video fade to black. It was Keith Urban, now its commercials. she said with a frown.
Well, come on, lets go find some food, the man stated. You distract Chris, and Ill grab us some of that delicious, melt in your mouth steak hes got out there.
The teen stood up saying, The last time I helped you do that, I took the blame for it. I dont think so, you can wait just like everyone else.
Fine, Ill do it myself, Buck stated dramatically as he headed out the back door, Sam following along behind him.
Buck began to approach the grill, only to have Larabee state calmly, Go away Buck.
The teen laughed as the bigger man, quickly turned on his heel and headed back toward the house.
Not a word, Wilmington stated, holding up his hand as he walked past the teen into the house.
Later that night, Sam sat on the couch watching the movie Speed with Ezra and Vin as Josiah and Chris tackled the dishes.
He shot his partner, Sam commented, watching Keanu Reeves.
Yeah, but he didnt hurt him too bad. Only shot at the seam of his pants is all, just enough to make him fall, Vin replied.
Well, at least none of us have that on our record, Ezra stated.
But Vin shot you, in the derriere, the teen responded, glancing at the southerner.
That didnt go on the record, Vin smirked.
* * *
Just remember, we can hear everything that goes on, so just say the word and youre out of there, JD commented, as the teen pulled a blue T-shirt over her head, covering the tank top and the vest underneath which had the microphone taped to it.
I know, she replied, straightening her shirt out.
Well, heres your stop, Buck commented, sliding open the back door to the van.
Lets go get em, the girl stated enthusiastically as she jumped out of the van.
* * *
The girl walked up to the closed door of the old warehouse building. Looking around, she quickly knocked on the old wood. She heard some noises coming from inside and then the door opened.
The man looked down at the teen, anger absorbing his face. We dont want any cookies.
He began to shut the door, but Sam reached up and grabbed it. I aint here to sell cookies. Charles told me about this place, says you got something I need."
The man stood there for a second and quickly motioned for the girl to enter. He harshly told the teen to follow him and he led her through the building to a back room.
They stopped at a door and the man quickly opened the door, looking inside at the man seated at the desk.
This girl says Charles told her about this place, what do you want me to do?
The man stood up and walked over to the door. He looked the girl up and down then questioned, Charles told you about this place?
Yeah, said this was the place I could get what I wanted and for less, she stated. Names Rachel, and Ive got an old boyfriend to take care of. Thing is, I cant get my hands on something to do it with, nobody takes me seriously." She shrugged. "He told me you could help.
The man exchanged glances with his assistant and reached out to shake the girls hand.
Names Alex, nice to meet you Rachel, he greeted with a smile. What do you have in mind?
You dont happen to have a Colt Defender in stock do you? the girl questioned with a raised eyebrow and an evil grin.
Ah, a child who knows what she wants, I like that, the man remarked. Right this way.
The teen began to follow the man as he led her to another area of the warehouse.
* * *
That was almost too easy, JD commented to Nathan, as the two sat with headphones on, listening to the conversation.
Your every day felon is smart, but only to an extent, the healer responded with a smile.
* * *
I see her, Buck spoke quietly into his mic, as he watched the teen round a corner behind the two men. Now I dont.
Shes in my line of sight, the southerner responded over the headset.
Good, stay with her, Larabees voice rang out over the headsets.
* * *
Alex opened a crate and looked inside, then moved to another crate. Sam looked around, noticing about ten men total in the area, each evaluating a crate.
Here we are, Alex remarked, pulling the handgun from a crate. Hows this?
He handed the firearm to the teen to look at. Sam turned it over in her hands a few times, examining it thoroughly, checking it all over, making a show of how well she knew the weapon inside and out.
Looks good, she commented. How much?
You know, Alex began, looking her over once again, Charles was a good man, too bad hes dead.
Real shame, the teen responded, feeling a little uneasy.
Get ready to move in, Larabee ordered over his mic, hearing what Alex said.
When did Charles refer this place to you? Alex questioned.
A while back, the girl remarked coolly. I just had to save up some money is all.
Ive got a feeling youre lying to me little girl, the man commented, and I dont like liars.
Sam saw Alexs assistant move for his gun.
Have we met before? he queried, narrowing his eyes at her.
No, I think not, she responded, lifting her chin.
Well, I think we have girlie, Alex told her, but Ill have to figure out where later. Take her to the back Walter.
ATF FREEZE! rang out from all sides of the building.
Walter moved to grab his gun, only to be shot in the shoulder.
Sam ducked behind a crate as Walsh made a run for the back of the warehouse.
Hes headed for the back, she yelled into the mic, as she searched the nearest crate for ammo. Dammit.
Shots rang out all over the warehouse. She heard members of Team 8 yell for men to get on the ground. Through all the chaos, she managed to find the crate her weapon had come from. She smiled as she grabbed the box of bullets from bottom of the crate. She slouched down and started loading the gun in her hand. Better safe than sorry, she thought.
She scooted over and allowed Ezra to crouch down beside her. He had managed to maneuver his way to the crates.
What are you doing? he questioned, glancing over the top of the crates, only to have a bullet ricochet past his head.
Being prepared, she commented, as Ezra pulled his head back down and slouched beside her.
Ah, I see, he commented. Have you seen Mr. Larabee?
Hes got Chris, Ezra heard the sharpshooter snarl over his headset. In the back room. Im trying to get down there. Someone needs to get in there now!"
Stay here, the southerner ordered Sam, as he listened for more gunfire.
When silence met his ears, he quickly hurried to the back in a crouched position.
The hell you say, the teen whispered under her breath as she followed behind him.
* * *
Come on, lets go, Nathan stated, pulling his gun from his holster as he and JD tore out of the van.
* * *
The teen and the undercover agent advanced into the back room, weapons drawn to find Alex holding a gun to the now disarmed ATF agent.
Now I know where I recognize you from, Walsh stated, looking at the teen. Youre Dunnisons kid. I looked over your files from the foster home. You look pretty good for someone whos supposed to be dead.
Killing my parents wasnt enough, you had to kill me too? the teen questioned defiantly, noticing Vin approach with his pistol drawn.
Just thought Id wipe out the entire line, get rid of their future forever, he remarked.
Let im go, Vin stated, a deadly tone in his voice.
Why, hes my ticket outta here, Alex growled, holding the man in front of him.
* * *
Jackson! Kelly yelled. OConnors been shot, can you help?
Nathan stopped and looked at JD.
Go on, Vins probably got it under control, the youngest agent commented, urging the medic to go help.
Nathan rushed over to the fallen agent and smiled to him.
Hey man, he stated, we medics arent supposed to get shot.
Yeah, I know. Guess I couldnt help myself, the man replied as Nathan assessed his injury.
JD hurried to the back room and moved to stand beside Buck.
Looks as if the calvary has arrived, Alex remarked with a smile.
Might as well give up, Ezra stated. You can shoot him, and one of us will take you out, or you can let him go, and turn yourself in easily. Saves a lot of paperwork that way too.
You kill him, youre facing the death penalty, Josiah added, his voice full of venom.
Yeah, but hes my hostage, without him, Im open for all of you, the man stated, clasping his hand tighter around the weapon.
Shoot the hostage, the idea from the movie ran quickly across the teens mind. She lowered her weapon and aimed at the seam on Chris right pant leg. Saying a quick prayer, she pulled the trigger.
She watched as Chris wounded leg buckled beneath him. As Chris fell, Alex pulled his gun to aim at the men before him, only to be pelted with bullets from five different guns. The teen watched as her parents' killer slowly fell back against the wall. He slid down, leaving smeared bloodstains above his head.
Buck and Josiah approached Chris immediately, as Ezra and Vin moved to take Walshs gun from his hand.
Its all right now, JD stated quietly, pulling the firearm from the teens grasp.
She continued to stare at the sight before her. JD noticed and quickly pulled her into an embrace, turning her away from the scene.
Everythings okay now, he stated again.
Who shot me? Chris questioned slightly agitated.
Sam did, Buck replied with a smile. You okay pard?
Help me up, he ordered as Josiah began to lift him off the floor.
The sound of police and ambulance sirens wailed outside and Josiah and Buck helped to move Chris from the back room.
JD began to walk Sam out of the room, but stopped as Vin stepped up beside them.
Nice shot, you aimed for the seam and hit it, the sharpshooter gave her a grateful nod.
The teen looked at him, tears in her eyes and she grinned.
JD! Buck yelled. Come here.
JD headed out of the room and Vin placed an arm across the teens shoulder as the two began to walk out.
Its over now isnt it? she questioned quietly.
Yeah, doll, its over, he reassured her.
* * *
They all met back up at the hospital. OConnor was treated for his shoulder wound and released.
Team 7 was waiting for them to release Larabee before they headed to the ranch.
Ryan stopped to talk with Buck for a moment in the waiting area. After a brief conversation he walked over and knelt in front of the teen.
You did good kid, he remarked, patting her shoulder. Real good.
She nodded her thanks, and he stood up and left. She glanced up at Buck who walked over and sat down beside her on the small couch. He laid an arm across the back of the pale blue vinyl and looked at the teen.
Youre the first person I know whos shot Chris and lived to tell about it, he remarked with a smile.
The teen looked up at him, but didnt return the smile.
Go on, he wants to see you, the explosives agent urged.
The teen stood up reluctantly and headed toward the room Chris was momentarily staying in.
She walked in and looked at him. He was sitting up in the bed, and she could see the padded area around his right leg under his jeans.
Come here, he ordered.
She moved out of the shadows and over beside the left side of the bed. Chris moved over to his right some more and patted the open space on the bed. The teen obediently climbed up to sit beside him.
You shot me, he stated simply. Who taught you that?
Vin well he just explained it to me after we watched this movie last night. I shouldnt have done it, it was a careless move, someone could have got hurt, she berated herself.
No, Chris interrupted, wrapping an arm around her. It was the smart thing to do. I dont know many men who would have done it though. Im very proud of you. You did real good.
He was going to have me killed, she commented quietly. Couldnt be satisfied with my parents, had to kill me too.
Sshh, its over now, he stated soothingly, as she buried her head up in his shoulder.
Larabee soon felt the dampness of tears sink through his shirt and he pulled her closer to him. Josiah stepped in the doorway to tell Chris he was free to leave, but Larabee held up his right hand, motioning for the profiler to stop. Josiah stood in the doorway for a few moments and nodded his head. He then turned to head back to the waiting room.
Its all over now, Larabee stated again. He cant hurt anyone anymore.
The teen breathed a sigh into the warm shoulder and took in the smell of cologne. It felt good to be safe.
If Tomorrow Never Comes
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