"He was followed home. This is going a bit faster than we expected so we need to be on our toes. I don't know of any big plan to test him, if there is one he's not talking about it," Chris revealed what he and JD had talked about earlier that morning at Vin's apartment.

"So you're gonna meet every mornin' at Vin's?" Buck asked.

"That's the plan, they think he lives there, if they happen to see him comin' from a dif'rent direction they might question him on it," Vin offered.

"He'll stay there if they watch him?" Nathan questioned.

"Yup, they don't seem too keen on hidin'," Vin referred to the fact that the teens had made their presence known when they'd followed JD.

"So the deception seems to be going well? Or is it going too well?" Ezra sighed his question.

"Whadya' mean 'too well'?" Buck asked noting Ezra sounded concerned and if Ezra was worried, he knew he should be.

"Mr. Wilmington, I apologize for my statement to appear to be one of concern for the safety of our young friend. What I meant was to imply was that if 'things' were progressing so rapidly, we may not have time enough to..prepare," Ezra covered his concern with his usual skill.

The truth was, Ezra suspected that Buck's previous statements had wormed their way into JD's subconscious, making him act a little quicker to get involved in this group than was necessary to prove his capability; JD was supposed to be recruited, from what Chris had said, JD basically offered his services.

"He really knows what he's doing doesn't he?" Bucks question was one of observation rather than a request of knowledge.

"Yeah he does," Nathan answered.

"Okay," Buck said quietly as he nodded, pushing himself from the table he stood and left as Nathan and Josiah did the same.

"What's got ya' worried, cowboy?" Vin asked, after the door was shut.

"Same thing Ezra's worried about," Chris said, tossing his pencil that he fumbled, onto the table.

"Thought you said.." Vin asked turning to the 'former' conman.

"I lied," Ezra said simply.

"You think he's gonna trip himself up?" Vin questioned.

"I believe that Mr. Dunne is so anxious to prove himself to 'Big Brother Buck' that he is going to find himself in a precarious situation that may not be so easy to remove himself from," Ezra's tone serious, "and with his past associations with organized groups, may lead to others questioning his loyalties."

"JD ain't gonna cross that line, he ain't like that" Vin started.

"No, he's not, but," Ezra said without lifting his head, "more than one person was shocked at learning what company he kept, if I hadn't seen the pictures myself I wouldn't have believed it. I can truely understand his motives back then, the need for protection and although the boy was a walking contradiction..tipping off law enforcement officials when he deemed it necessary, as honorable as that may be..I'm sure there were a hundred situations that the police were not informed of ".

"Don't you think you're gettin a little carried away with playin' Devil's Advocate there Ezra?" Vin almost laughed out, the smile on his face that tried to form quickly died as he saw Chris's face.

"I don't think he'd switch sides, but Ezra's right. This is moving a bit too fast, he might not be able to let us know of a plan or situation before it goes down." Chris sighed.

+ + + + + + +

JD pulled his bike to a stop in front of the school to the same place he'd parked it the day before. He'd been sent to the office and gotten a warning that vehicles weren't allowed to be brought to school that afternoon, JD pointed out that it was a motorcycle, not a vehicle and that no where in the student rule book did it say motorcycles were prohibited.

JD removed his helmet, attached it to his backpack and walked into the school amongst several other students. His head was lowered a bit, not really paying attention to where he was going, his head lifted as he came to an abrupt stop. The guy he had walked into was huge.

"Watch it," the teen said.

"That's him Bobby..that's the one," JD heard a familiar squeaky voice, he turned to see Lily pointing excitedly at JD.

"Think you're all that huh? My girlfriend was just trying to help and you scared the shit out of her..tried to get her into the boys bathroom..what were you gonna do then, huh?" Bobby's deep voice sneered.

"Lila?" JD laughed out at the thought.

"Lily," Bobby corrected.

JD shrugged, "Whatever..She said she was suppose to show me around..thought that was part of the tour," JD smiled up to Bobby.

"Well let me show you something," Bobby said.

JD barely escaped the fist that he swore was as big as his head.

"You don't want this fight jocko," JD said.

"I shit bigger than you," Bobby smiled.

"I bet you do.." JD said, just as Bobby lurched at him. JD's instinct to protect himself took over and the fight was on.

Four teachers and the principal came running into the hall hearing the cheers that they knew indicated a fight. Joey and his group were interested spectators, casually leaning against the wall, waiting for the outcome of the unfair battle between 'the ferret' and the 200 pound football player.

The battle was over within minutes, before the teachers could even get to the two fighting, the victor stood from his challenger breathless and bloody.

Joey and company all had satisfied smiles on their faces as 'the ferret' stood.

"No bullshit there boys, he's street," Joey said satisfied as he walked away from the gathering.

+ + + + + + +

"Talk...I'll be there in 10 minutes," Chris said, folding the cell phone and replacing it in his pocket.

"What's up?" Buck asked.

"Kid got in a fight," Chris sighed.

"That's a good thing, right..I mean..gotta be tough," Buck reasoned.

"Not when the one your fighting outweighs ya by 150 pounds".

Buck cringe at the thought, "School called ya. JD can't be too bad".

"Just banged up a bit. I'll be back," Chris said with a sigh.

"If I was you, I would've tightened them reins when he was wouldn't be having these problems if ya hadn't coddled the boy," Buck said, trying to make the teasing sound serious.

"You know how kids are these days Buck, they have no respect for their 'elders'," Nathan quietly added his tease.

"Vin, did he just call me an 'elder'?" Chris asked as he waited for the elevator to open.

"I believe he did," Vin answered with a smile.

"At least once," Ezra added, raising one eyebrow.

"He hates that," Josiah offered.

Nathan smiled and chuckled, more so after the elevator door opened and Chris disappeared into it.


Chris and JD finished loading his bike into the back of Chris's truck, not a word was said by either man after they had left the principal's office. Chris looked at JD as the last tie was in place holding the motorcycle steady, Chris hung his head and sighed heavily, then opened his door, JD doing the same. JD hopped into the seat and shut his door. Chris entered the truck, slamming his door.

JD put on his seatbelt as Chris started the truck, again casting a deadly glare to the younger agent. JD put his elbow on the arm rest of the door and held his head with the hand. Chris was not happy, and that meant an ass chewing.

"Didn't think.." JD started quietly, breaking the uncomfortable silence.

"Didn't think? You got that right.. A concussion JD? A concussion.. You gave that kid a concussion!" Chris was anything but quiet.

"What was I supposed to do? He came after me!" JD asked, his voice getting a bit louder.

"Something besides kick his ass into next week! What happens when his folks find out that you're an agent? Can you spell lawsuit!"

"I didn't thi.."

"We've already established that," Chris cut JD off.

All Chris could hope for was that the parents of this All-American student would see that JD was trying to establish a reputation and unfortunately their son was a casualty of his cover. He knew the group they were trying to infiltrate had a bad rep in the school, and with any luck they were known with the parents of students at this school and maybe, just maybe, they would understand.

JD sighed and turned his face to the window, fighting off the tears of letting Chris down, and the disappointment he felt in himself.

"I'm taking you off," Chris said dryly.

"What?!" JD yelled out.

"I'm taking you off, you've been suspended for three days..everyone will think you moved aren't going back".

"Why? I'm almos.."

"Why? You're 20 years old and you just sent a 17 year old kid to the hospital, you really have to ask me why?" Chris laughed out sardonically.

"He came after me..or didn't you hear that part?" JD defended his actions.

"I heard you, you're off the case," Chris's tone was harsh.

"You think I made a mistake and so now I'm off the case," JD said sarcastically, his tone and words were close to having the ass chewing turn into an ass whooping.

"The problem is you don't think you made a mistake," Chris pointed out, pulling the truck to the curb and screeching to a halt.

"All I did was defend myself!"

"Against a kid," Chris said with clenched teeth.

"He weighed twice as much as me..if he was any kinda fighter he would have snapped me in half," JD said casually, instantly regretting what he added onto the statement.

Chris didn't respond, he couldn't. What JD had said alarmed him, not the words so much but the tone. It was stated in a matter of fact way and that's what concerned Chris the most. He wondered if this was the 'real' JD Dunne, the ferret, gang member, showing his face. Chris needed to choose his words carefully, he knew that whatever he said would upset JD, it was just a matter of how upset.

"JD," Chris broke the silence with a soft tone, the one no one else was privileged to.

JD turned his black-eyed, swollen split-lipped face to Chris. JD could see the concern in Chris's eyes.

"I'm sorry Chris," he said sincerely, "I screwed up, it's just..when he came after me...guess it was just instinct," JD continued quietly, "I'll straighten it out," referring to the possible 'situation' he created with assaulting Bobby the football jock.

"I'm still taking you off the case," Chris said.

JD didn't say anything, he hung his head and nodded, then looked out the window as Chris began to drive away. Maybe Buck was right, he was too young to be depended on, not exactly Buck's words but 'You ain't ready' translated roughly to least it had to JD.

+ + + + + + +

JD slouched in the overstuffed chair that was in the living room of his apartment. His head hurt from trying to justify to himself what he'd done to Bobby. Was there another way he could have dealt with Bobby? The only thing he could think of was to tell Bobby what he was doing there, and that ran the risk of his cover being blown once the 'rumor mill' started.

JD pushed himself up from the chair, shoved his hands into his pockets and sighed. He brought his hands out of his pocket, he unfolded the piece of paper that Zeke, one of Joey's guys, had given to him after the fight as he waited for his 'father' to pick him up, and finally read it.

A small smile crossed his face. He was in. They needed the ferret, Chris would reconsider taking him off the case if he knew this.

JD picked up the phone and dialed, he waited for the familiar voice to say..


"Chris, you can't take me off the case," JD said smiling.

"And why is that?" Chris said, like he didn't have authority to do it.

"Cause I'm in..Look..I'm gonna run over to the hospital, let Bobby's folks know why I did what I did..then I gotta meet with Joey and the others".

"Where are you meet.." Chris tried to ask, but JD had already hung up.

"Sorry I hung up Chris, but that way you can't say no," JD said to the phone that was ringing, Chris's voice demanding he pick up from his side of the phone. He grabbed his jacket and helmet as he heard the phone ring again as he ran out the door.

He started the bike and headed for the hospital, hoping Bobby's parents would understand once he explained what was going on; he would leave out the same part that he'd 'forgotten' to tell Chris, that he had held back..that he had controlled himself.. if he wanted to, he could've done a lot more than given the kid a concussion.


"Hi JD," Marie greeted, then stood from her desk to look to the ER entrance door .

"I'm the only one Marie," JD said with a crooked smile, the swollen lip preventing the smiles full effect.

"You need to see a Doctor?" The woman asked.

"No, a kid was brought in 'bout an hour ago, I need to talk to his folks. Can ya help me out?" JD asked, the pleading eyes worked their magic.

"Yup..Thompsons.. Room 311," Marie smiled.

"Thanks," JD nodded and went in search of room 311.

He walked for a few minutes, making his way through corridors and short cuts to the wing that he knew Bobby Thompson was at. 311, just a general admittance room; JD knew that much, besides hospital staff and medic crews, the men he worked with knew the hospital layout better than any law enforcement division, but that's to be expected when at least 2 or 3 times a month one of his fellow agents were housed here, himself included.

JD slowed his pace as he saw a Doctor talking to two people, he looked to the room he just passed..302..he looked straight again and figured they must be the Thompsons. He tried to ease his breathing and calm his nerves, he began to seriously question the wisdom of meeting these people.

'Mr. and Mrs. Thompson? I'm JD Dunne'.... 'agent Dunne, ATF. I'm responsible for beatin' the crap outta your kid'.. 'for the condition that your son is in.' The words ran through his head. None of them sounding right.

"JD?" Dr. Lassiter said.

"Doc," JD smiled.

"Are you visiting..or," Lassiter asked, he hadn't recalled seeing any of the 'Magnificent Seven' being brought in.

"Kinda, I'm..well, I'm looking these folks..I think," JD said.

"Robert and Elyse?" Lassiter questioned, his mind started to go a mile a minute, the teen that had been brought in seemed nice enough, he didn't know why JD would want to talk to these people.

"Yeah, there's somethin you need to know..about what happened," JD said, hanging his head slightly.

"Is my son in trouble?" Robert Thompson asked, noting JD's ATF ID.

JD was glad he remembered to do that, maybe this would be a little more understandable.

"No, sir..he's not," JD assured, he then looked around "Can we sit down and talk?"

Thompson nodded and led his wife to the chairs that sat in the corridor.

"If Bobby's not in trouble then why are you here?" Elyse Thompson asked, he voice unsteady with the fact she was talking to an Agent of some law division about her son.

"I don't really know where to start," JD said honestly, taking a deep breath to calm himself, then continued.

"I'm not sure if you are aware that there is gang activity in the school where your son goes to school," JD started.

"War Dogs. Yes, we've been after the Principal and School Board to get some outside help with them, people have been hurt and threatened; it won't be long before someone is killed," JD found himself smiling as Thompson revealed what he knew.

"Well, they asked for help, and they got it," JD said, easing the smile that crossed his face. "I'm working undercover in the school, trying to get into the gang, see if we can get proof that they're involved in illegal activities".

"You can count on that," Thompson said.

"But without 'proof' there's nothin' to go on. Did your son tell you why he got in the fight?" JD asked.

"Yes he did, he was thinking with his ego and ..other things..besides his head, you see he has a girlfriend, she was showing a new student around, some things were insinuated and she told Bobby about them, when the boy came to school Bobby picked a fight with him. Bobby said he was taken by surprise, he figured he'd hit the boy once and he'd be out; but the boy surprised Bobby, guess the kid was pretty small but fought hard. Guess that should teach my son that looks can be deceiving," Mr. Thompson said with a smile as he looked to JD.

"You were there?" JD nodded, "Why didn't you stop're an officer of the law, you should have stepped in and stopped it..Bobby could have been seriously hurt," the motherly protectiveness took its anger out on JD.

"Elyse, think about it for a minute, if Agent Dunne," Thompson read the badge name "is supposed to be undercover trying to get into a gang, how would it have looked if he broke up a fight?" Thompson reasoned.

"Your wife is right, I should've stopped it," JD said. "He was fightin' with me".

"What were you thinking?" the Mrs. asked, breaking the silence.

"A lot of things, but not what I should have been," JD said ashamed at the realization that he was only thinking about one thing, proving himself to the others, "All I could see was him coming after me, I didn't think about anything but defending myself. After it was over, the guys I'm after looked pretty pleased, and your son was the farthest thing from my mind..all I know is that if I hadn't have fought, I wouldn't be meeting with those guys tonight. If I'm allowed in with the War Dogs, I'll be able to get the proof I need to get them put away. I know what happened doesn't justify what I did, I'm sorry," JD took a deep breath and looked both parents in the eyes.

"I haven't got the right to ask this, but.." JD sighed, he was going on gut feelings, his common sense long gone after he read the note earlier at the apartment.

"What I'm askin is, you hold off on any legal action till this is settled..and you not hold ATF accountable, this was my doing, no one else's..I was sent in there to do a job, we had a plan and that pretty much went out the window the first day, what happened with Lily and Bobby was all my doin', no one else's," JD said seriously.

Thompson could see the honesty in the boy's eyes, he admitted he'd messed his assignment up; Thompson had to give him credit for that. He also noted the desperation in the young man's plea. He looked to his wife and nodded his head. JD smiled his thanks.

"Tell him I'm sorry," JD said as he stood, and he walked away.

"Bob, you agreed not to take legal action..he's an Agent, he beat up..."

"I'm well aware if that Elyse. You know how Bobby can be sometimes. Dunne, he seems to be a good person, he doesn't look much older that Bobby and I don't think his boss sent him here. He admitted he was wrong Elyse, I don't know of many men who can admit when they'd made a mistake," Thompson sighed.

"Legal action. He came here to find out if we were going to press charges," the woman still questioned the young man's motives.

"I don't think he's wondering, he seemed to be pretty sure, he wants to get these guys, he asked us to hold off," Thompson said.

"He is taking full responsibility, too," the woman said, coming to the same conclusion that her husband had.

"We have to see the bigger picture, I'm sorry Bobby had to get hurt..I have a feeling that young man could have done a lot more than just hurt him, I think we just let it go..and chalk it up as a hard lesson for both of them," Thompson said, referring to his son's intimidation tactics, and one ATF agent who made a mistake.


The ATF office was frantic with activity. Chris had filled the others in on the events that had happened at the High School and the phone call he'd received from JD. Vin managed to make it to the hospital before JD left, he followed him in an attempt to at least offer some 'back up', but JD spotted him and having a motorcycle, outmaneuvered the Jeep. Vin tried every side street and short cut he could to catch up with JD, but JD was too fast.

The elevator door opened and everyone's attention went to the large man who exited.

"You hear anythin'?" Buck asked anxiously.

"Not much," Josiah answered.

"What 'do' you know?" Buck asked sharply.

"War Dogs are supposed to be welcoming a new member, where I don't know," Josiah sighed, telling them everything his snitch had revealed to him.

"Do we have an idea as to when?" Ezra asked, Josiah shook his head.

"Now what, Chris?" Buck asked.

"PD knows JD, they get called, and they pick him up, they'll let us know," Chris thought aloud, "Only thing we can do is wait".

"Maybe we can look around?" Nathan asked.

"It's nearly 9; lets pack it up, if anyone hears anything we can all.." Chris began, but Vin's ringing phone interrupted him.

"Tanner...Juan? When, okay..we'll be right there," Vin sighed, hanging the phone up.

"He just got dropped off," Vin said, most understanding that JD wasn't in the best of shape, Buck thinking that Hall had simply dropped him off at the place he 'lived'.

"Well lets go knock some sense into that little 'ferrets' thick head," Buck said standing from his desk.

"No, you all go home, let me and Vin take care of it," Chris said. probably ain't much more knockin' the kid could stand Chris thought, knowing that JD had been 'welcomed' into the group.

"We still have paperwork to complete Mr. Wilmington, Mr. Sanchez, perhaps it would be a convenient time to deal with it?" Ezra suggested.

"I s'pose, didn't have any plans tonight anyways," Buck sighed.

"Why not," Josiah said, knowing what Ezra was up to.

"Guess I'll head out with you two then," Nathan forced a smile.

"Ground him for a month..that should straighten him out," Buck said with a smile, but with a serious tone.

"Let's go," Chris said, ignoring the comment.

+ + + + + + +

JD opened his eyes and breathed a sigh of relief that Chris or Vin weren't there, looking down at him. He cautiously pushed himself up from the concrete sidewalk, ignoring the pain that ran down his ribs (front and back) and everywhere in between. He managed a slouching stand holding his right arm close to himself.

He steadied himself, reaching his left hand into his right jean pocket and grasped onto the key Vin gave him. He carefully put the key between his clenched teeth, and made his way up the cement stoop, he opened the door into the lobby. He looked up the three flights of stairs he needed to make it up and sighed before continuing.

After what seemed forever, he made it to Vin's door, he took the key from his mouth and desperately tried to steady his shaking hand and find the key hole. He dropped his hand to his side and took a deep breath, until the pain made him cut that attempt short. He took another breath, more easier on his ribs than the first try and let it out evenly. He once again tried the key, he was getting weaker and he knew it, the last thing he wanted was for Vin to come home and find him piled up of the floor.

He was so intensely concentrating on unlocking the door he never heard the 3 sets of footsteps coming up the stairs. JD again tried the shaky hand.

"Need a hand," Chris said, JD surprisingly didn't jump, he simply lifted his hand up and gave Chris the key, never looking at the man.

"Come on," Chris said, grabbing JD by the right upper arm to guide him into the apartment.

"Ahhh," JD quietly gasped, instantly stopping Chris.

"Sorry," he said, JD just nodded, wondering if Chris really was, after all he had hung up on him.

Nathan made his way in front of JD.

"Dislocated?" He asked.

"No," JD said, his voice raspy and tired, hoping Nathan would dismiss the blood on the sleeve and not notice the cut he'd gotten from a knife.

"Where else'd ya get it?" Nathan asked, noticing the blood on the front of JD shirt.

"I'm fine Nate, just need to lay down for a bit," JD answered lightly, his voice enlightening them to the fact he wasn't 'fine'.

"It worth it?" Chris asked, purposefully not looking up from where he sat.

"Yeah, it was worth it. I'm in. Gotta meet with them tomorrow, they need me to get some information for them," JD said, his words beginning to be impeded as his fat lip got fatter.

Vin made his way to JD, he carefully put his hand under JD's chin and slowly lifted his face. JD didn't protest the motion, he couldn't..the slight pressure under his chin sent small waves of pain throughout his face.

"Shit kid," Vin sighed, noticing the various cuts, bruises and blood.

"Ain't as bad as it looks... had worse," JD attempted to laugh out, but the sore ribs prevented it.

"Did you walk away from 'worse'?" Vin asked, if the rest of the kids body looked anything like his face, he couldn't imagine what JD considered worse.

"Not always," JD chuckled, again gasping at the pain that it caused.

"' with the shirt," Nathan ordered.

"I'm fine..just let me lay down a bit," JD reminded as he tried to shuffle his way to the couch.

"Take it off JD," Chris instructed, still choosing not to look up from the floor.

JD sighed and tried to remove his shirt with his left hand, he'd wished he'd chosen to wear a buttoned shirt, would have been a lot easier; it's not like he didn't know what was going to happen once he'd gotten the 'invitation' to meet Joey and the others at the abandoned warehouse.

He gave up and finally sent a pleading look to Vin , who couldn't help but smile and shake his head as he made his way to JD.

"Get cut bad?" Vin asked quietly, as he helped JD with the longsleeved shirt.

JD shrugged. Nathan was the one with the medical background, but Vin had keen eyes, not much escaped him, he had noticed the wet dark stain on the kids upper arm.

"Long, but it ain't deep," JD whispered back.

"Easy, easy easy.." JD said as his shirt was brought up over his head, causing both arms to raise up a little.

The sound of JD's distress finally garnered the attention of the fearless leader. JD's back was covered with bruises, different sizes and severity making themselves obvious to anyone. If this is what the kids back looked like he'd hate to see what the young agents face looked like. He found himself riveted as Vin turned JD around carefully, helping him ease his left arm from the longsleeve and then the right. He winced at every movement in sympathy.

"Thanks," JD said quietly.

"No problem, you got that wrong though," Vin said pointing to the cut.


"Ya' got it mixed up, cuts deep but not long," Vin smiled.

"I knew it was one them," JD smiled crookedly at the sharpshooter, Chris finally seeing the extent of damage done to JD's face.

"Get him into the shower so..." Nathan started, but the loud knock on the door cut him off.

"Vin! Open the dang door would ya. The cockroaches are given me funny looks!" Buck yelled from the other side of the door.

The four men stared at the door, no one able to move. The reasons for having JD use Vin's place were simple, 1) it would be much more believable that a gang member would live in down troddened Purgatorio than in a fancy loft apartment and 2) more importantly, give JD a place to hide from Buck once JD was 'welcomed' into the gang, knowing that the young agent would be in less than favorable condition.

"Vin! Chris, come on. Open up!" Buck pleaded again.


"In the bathroom, get him in the shower and clean him up," Nathan said in a hushed tone.

"I can take a shower by.." JD whispered forcefully.

"Shut up JD," Chris said quietly as he stood next to Vin and JD.

"How ya' gonna explain Nathan?" Vin asked, not knowing how they were going to explain the once licensed E.M.T.'s presence.

"Juan said he looked pretty drunk right?" Chris smiled.

JD rolled his eyes, he thought maybe Buck seeing him beat up would be easier to take than the 'you're not 21 and shouldn't be drinking..especially when on duty' speech he knew he was in for. At least he knew he'd get a bit of sympathy from Buck, before he got the 'this assignment is too dangerous and you're gonna get yourself killed' talk.

"Can't ya just tell him I got shot or somethin'?" JD begged.

"Drunk," Chris smiled.

"Thanks a lot," JD said, knowing it was payback for going against orders and continuing on with the cover. Vin smiled as he grabbed JD's bloody shirt from the floor and took it into the bathroom with them.

"You bet," Chris grinned as the bathroom door was shut. Chris then went to the front door and unlocked the several locks and opened it to find not only Buck, but the other two agents that were supposed to be doing paperwork.


"What in hell was that?" Buck asked as he heard the muffled cry from the bathroom, "and what are you doin here?" he asked Nathan.

"Juan told Vin JD looked drunk when he got dropped off, told Nathan on the way down in the elevator," Chris lied.

"He's drunk? What in God's name is that boy thinking..Drinkin..he ain't even old enough to drink..what if he opened his loud mouth and told..don't he realize..."

+ + + + + + +

JD pushed Vin's hand away from the mouth that it covered, fire in his eyes, as he heard Bucks rant from the other side of the door.

"What d'ya' do that for?" he whispered angrily.

"Cause your s'posed to be drunk, not hurt! You want Buck bustin' in here findin you lookin' like this?" Vin's whispered more maniacal than his own.

JD shook his head, "No, but I can't very well keep quiet when your messin' 'round with my arm like that ya know," JD whispered harshly.

"Sorry, let's get ya' cleaned up..hopefully they can get rid'a Buck and you can get some sleep".

Vin cleaned the deep two inch long cut on JD's upper arm, and began wrapping it.

"So what's this meetin' you gotta get information for?" Vin asked, recalling the statement he'd made when he first arrived at the apartment, dabbing iodine on the cut above JD's right eye.

JD hissed as the iodine reached the cut,"Rival bunch has some kinda big buy goin down over on James street, dunno what kinda deal or what the buy is all 'bout, I'm guessin' guns," JD hissed again as Vin repeated the dabbing under the kids left eye, " Joey seems real anxious to know when it's gonna happen. Rivals meet every Thursday to discuss 'business', I gotta find out the details know..where, when, what," JD revealed all he knew.

"You think Joey knows what their dealin'?"

"Well yeah, he just didn't tell me," JD said easily.

"Didn't ya ask?"

"Ferret's don't ask, they just go where they're told to," again said casually.

"James street, huh?"

"Yeah, why? You guys got something else goin' on that I don't know 'bout?" JD asked concern in his voice.

"Ezra gotta call from Boxer, said he wanted to do a deal, some juvie's gotta hold of a shipment of weapons..that might be what you're goin' after," Vin suspected, too many coincidences for it not to be the same deal he thought as he began to clean JD's back, where small cuts and abrasions were.

"I can't tell Joey....ow.. that I didn't get any info," JD panicked softly.

"We'll figure out what to do," Vin said simply.

"Boy!! You better hope God and all his angels are watching over you...." JD jumped slightly as Buck's voice boomed through the door "....cause by the time I'm done with you your're gonna need to call in a few favors!! You got that!"

"I shoulda just let him see me," JD whispered.

"Don't worry Buck, he's gonna have one hell of a hangover by t'morrow," Vin said loud enough so Buck could hear.

"He'll be lucky if he can stand straight by the time I'm done with him!!" Buck yelled back.

"Buck, why don't you let Josiah and Ezra take you home, Vin can handle JD," Chris said, approaching Buck at the bathroom door.

"Who's gonna get him home?" Buck asked sarcastically.

"He can stay here," Vin answered through the door.

"Probably a good idea..You're so mad you'd probably kill him," Chris smiled.

"All right, but his ass is mine tomorrow," Buck promised.

"We'll see," Chris said calmly.


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