Buck pounded frantically on JD's bedroom door.
"Open up JD! NOW!" he shouted. Chris moved forward, as he and the others waited anxiously. "What the hell happened?" Buck continued, "I thought we were going to give him some time before we told him together."
"We were," Chris' voice was tight. "He just picked up one of the evidence bags and it all came back to him I guess."
"JD!" Buck called again. It unnerved him that JD was being so quiet. "Get back." He spread his arms wide pushing the others back as he did.
"What're you going to do?" Josiah asked.
"I'm kicking in the damn door!" Buck half shouted, as he delivered a solid kick to the barrier. The wood gave way with a loud splintering and the door flew open revealing and empty room.
"JD?" Buck rushed into the bathroom figuring the boy was sick. Vin took one look around the chilled room and disappeared. Chris would have followed, but Buck's bellow stopped him.
"Where is he?" "Chris." Josiah stood beside the bed a hand gesturing to the open window.
"No." Nathan moved forward. "He didn't. He couldn't, not in his condition." The former medic peered out the window in disbelief. Vin appeared below and Nathan watched him take in the scene knowing he was looking for signs of where JD headed.
"Chris," Buck's voice cracked, "he doesn't even have shoes on."
For a moment Chris thought his friend was going to lose control, but Buck held himself in check. The room was silent, as the shock settled and began to dissipate kicking the weathered agents into action.
"We need to find him," Nathan voiced the obvious, "he had to have ripped his stitches out climbing down."
"How? He could barely move," Buck asked shaking his head in confusion. "Fear," Ezra's voice was barely a whisper, as he stood back and away from the others. He'd watched, as they searched for JD, his heart beating erratically. His mind chanting You did this, you did this, you did this. He wanted to back into the wall, let the wood envelop him and erase his existence. The look of sheer terror in JD's eyes was frozen forever in his sight and had brought with it the memory of JD pleading for him not to shoot.
"Ezra?" Chris was talking. They were dividing up to search for JD. "He couldn't have gotten far," Nathan said.
Chris nodded. "Buck you'll got with Vin, Josiah go with Nathan. Ezra you're with me." He headed towards the door, but Ezra's whisper stopped him.
"I can't go."
"What?" Chris turned to see Buck grab Ezra by his shirt. "What do you mean you can't go?" Buck slammed the smaller man against the wall, as he asked.
"He's afraid of me Buck," Ezra said plainly, his voice now hollow and empty.
"We don't have time for this now," Nathan protested, pushing Buck away from Ezra, "we have to find JD." Buck shot another look at Ezra unsure of how to feel towards the southerner before following Nathan and Josiah out of the room. Chris waited for Ezra. "You're coming with me." It wasn't a question.
"But he's..." Chris held up a hand cutting Ezra's protest off.
"He's just confused Ezra. He'll understand once we explain. We just have to find him first." Ezra nodded once and followed obediently all the while hearing the voice inside continue it's chant. 'You did this.'
+ + + + + + +
I don't know where I am. I know I'm in my own neighborhood, but for some reason I can't make sense of anything.
"Run!" the voice screams inside my head. "Ezra will kill you."
Ezra. He wouldn't hurt me. I try to understand, but the image of him in front of me firing the gun rips my rationale. "RUN!"
A corner, an alley, another corner, I force myself to keep moving, but I can feel my feet dragging. "They'll find you. Run." I can't run anymore even though the voice still shouts at me. My vision blurs and I stumble. My head bangs against the brick side of a building, as I slide down it's rough surface. Images merge and flash before me, as a pain burns in my side. Ezra shot me. I reach for my side trying to push away the pain. I'm sticky. I'm cold. I can't move. "Run!" the voice keeps shouting. God I can't move. I can't see anymore. I lay there shivering not able to tell if it's getting dark or if I'm going blind.
+ + + + + + +
It hadn't taken long for Vin to find what he was looking for, JD's trail. "He's bleeding." he pointed out the spot of blood to Buck.
"Oh God." Buck stared at the stained sidewalk and shivered. It was so cold. JD didn't have a coat or shoes or anything. He followed Vin along a jagged path through one alley and another. "Where is he going?"
"Just running." They turned another corner. "There!" Vin pointed and broke into a run. JD lay half against a building, curled up and trembling. Buck whipped off his coat and covered JD, as he lifted him and held him close.
"JD, it's me and Vin. We're going to get you help." He could feel JD trying to resist, but the younger man was too weak. Vin was on the phone already calling an ambulance and the others. They would meet at the hospital.
+ + + + + + +
Buck paced the small waiting room casting frustrated glares at the clock as if he could intimidate time into moving faster. JD was in surgery again. He'd torn more then just his stitches. The doctor had assured them that barring infection JD would most likely be fine, but until he was out of surgery and recovery they were forced to wait.
Ezra shifted in his chair in the corner drawing Buck's attention. Buck stared at his team member, fighting his own confused thoughts. Ezra was responsible for all of this. Part of him wanted to believe that because it was easier to understand then the truth. He wanted to be angry at the southerner, to hate him for letting JD get beaten. For shooting him.
Ezra felt eyes on him and looked up meeting Buck's gaze. He saw the hate flicker there and knew he deserved it. You did this, the chant continued. He turned away from Buck and focused instead on the dark sky. What was happening to him? He'd never felt so insecure and unable to handle it. Usually he'd have a whole arsenal of cocky retorts, and comebacks. Big words building a wall of protection to separate himself from the accusatory glances. He rubbed his hand over his bruised arm again. He could still feel the sharp jab of the needle going in, he could hear the voice telling him over and over again what he had to do. Why hadn't he been able to fight it?
"Ezra." He jumped as Buck sat down next to him and forced himself to look at him. Buck looked at his hands then at Ezra. "Sorry I jumped on you earlier. I know you were just thinking of JD."
Ezra nodded. "I understand your reaction Mr. Wilmington."
Buck wanted to say more, to tell him it wasn't his fault, but the words wouldn't come. Instead he let the awkward silence hang for a moment before returning to his pacing.
Chris watched the exchange from his chair across the room. Vin sat beside him staring out the window. Josiah and Nathan had gone in search of coffee. Chris sighed heavily and ran a hand through his hair. The last time they were in this waiting room it had been JD and Ezra they were waiting about. Ezra had been in shock. Chris watched his undercover agent now and wondered if the man had recovered yet.
Again he found himself focusing on the case. He began to replay the entire scene through his memory quietly accepting a cup of coffee from Josiah, as he and Nathan returned and settled in chairs to wait. After fighting with the surveillance equipment they had been starting to move in when they heard the shots. Three shots that still echoed in his mind. He'd been the first one in the building followed closely by Buck. Chris feared the worst, but wasn't prepared for it, as he'd burst into the basement and found JD on the ground with Ezra standing just a few feet away from him. Ezra stared at JD's body making no move to help him, as Buck rushed pass Chris and knelt beside JD. That's when Chris had noticed the gun hanging limply in Ezra's hand.
"Ezra?" he'd approached his agent slowly trying to ascertain what had happened. Ezra looked at him his green eyes hollow and empty. "Ezra?" Chris said his name again, harsher this time. "What happened?" A resigned look slowly replaced the blank expression, no remorse, just resignation.
" I killed him," Ezra admitted then began to turn the gun on himself. Chris was faster and moved like lightning batting the gun away from Ezra's grasp and wrestling the agent to the floor. Ezra never resisted, but as Chris pinned him to the ground, he watched the green eyes shift and clear, the hollowness giving way to confusion.
"Chris?" he'd sounded like a small boy, "What happened?" As soon as he asked the question it was like a switch was thrown and Chris could visibly see the memories flood back into the man he held onto. "Oh my god!" Ezra had rasped, as he passed out.
"Chris?" Vin's voice brought him back to the present.
"JD's out of recovery."
Comments to: email@example.com