to Part 8


My Place Is With You -
Mike & Carrie Saga: Volume 2
by
Bradygirl
Part 7

"Everything Changes"

Carrie knew she was asleep but her neck was killing her. As she slowly awoke becoming aware of her surroundings, she found her upper body was restrained. She was strapped in like a baby in a car seat. Her eyes opened slowly. They felt heavy and thick. She was again in the plane. Dim security lights peeked out from opposite ends of the cabin. It was so dark she could barely see Craig who was sitting in the seat next to her. Had her entire dialogue with him in the hanger been a mere dream?

Craig’s body jerked as if a jarring image invaded his thoughts. She observed him as he fought the effects of the drugs trying to regain consciousness. A single bead of sweat dripped from his hairline down his face and onto his neck. Another followed. He seemed to be having a strange reaction because she wasn’t sweating like he was. It was probably the humidity but it wasn’t humid inside the plane. The air-conditioning was still running. She could see gleams of sweat in his hair near his scalp His hair was cut close in a style she’d recommend only for military men, but on him, somehow the look worked. She loosened his tie and unbuttoned the first few buttons of his shirt. His skin felt hot to the touch. He must have a fever.

"Craig?" she said as she lightly shook him. "Craig, you have to wake up. It’s Carrie." She wasn’t a doctor. She didn’t know what to do. The blue silk shirt he wore was soaked in perspiration from his neck to the black leather belt around his waist. She couldn’t help but remember how dapper he looked only this morning. His suit which had been smartly pressed now had seen better days. The shirt itself was ruined for sure. The jacket and sunglasses gone. Something had definitely happened between the last time they were in the plane and now.

The straps bit into her shoulder and Carrie tugged at them until they gave way making it easy for her to unbuckle herself. Craig was another story. His restraints were tighter and it took a little more time to free him. With the straps undone, Craig slumped into her arms. The weight of him pushed her backward and they both landed on the floor in a tangle of arms and legs. She wrenched herself free and in the process, somehow, Craig’s head ended up in her lap. Feeling his forehead, she realized the fever was still there. She stroked his hair hoping to calm him down. He appeared so helpless without his wise-cracking mouth to protect him. In sleep he even seemed... tolerable. She wondered why he put on such a hard mask for the world.

Carrie gently shook him again. If she could get him to wake up, it would be better for both of them. A weak protest escaped his lips.

"Not now Nancy. Maybe later, ‘kay?" he muttered obviously in delirium. Carrie assumed Nancy to be Craig’s wife. She pitied the poor woman who had Craig and his multiple personalities as a husband. Shaking him even harder, Craig finally opened his eyes. "Carrie? What are you doing here?" he said with surprise. "Did Nancy let you in?

She held back the laugh that came to her lips. He was delirious. He didn’t know what he was saying but that didn’t make the situation any less funny. "Craig," she said trying to keep a straight face. "Where exactly do you think you are?"

As Craig glanced around the airplane, his face took on a slightly peaked flush.

"What ever you do, please don’t throw up on me."

"So, this isn’t a dream? It’s really happening?"

"No, it isn’t a dream. Mike’s been kidnapped for God knows why, and we’re paying for trying to find him."

"What do they want?" Carrie couldn’t believe Craig asked her that question. Like she knew any more than he. She only shrugged her shoulders in response.

"It’s been awfully quiet in here for a while now. I don’t think there is anyone on this plane besides us."

"They’re not? Then what are we doing? Let’s get out of here." Craig attempted to get up.

"No, way buster!" she said pulling hard on his silk shirt. "We’re not going anywhere until I know where Mike is."

***

Mike had troubled dreams and it seemed like lately he’d been having quite a few of them. At first, they were all about Gina and the time they had shared together in Israel. But now, Carrie’s image had entered the picture and changed everything. Before, Gina had just been a memory, but now, with Carrie in the picture along side her, it made Gina appear more real, more flesh and bone. His heart felt like it was splitting in two and he was helpless to stop it.

Mike jerked awake and sat up in bed. The cotton sheets falling to his waist exposing his naked torso. His body was lightly bronzed and glistening with a film of perspiration. His breathing came faster and faster until he nearly passed out. His head pounded as he wiped the last bit of sleep from his eyes. The night was dark behind the curtains, and a clock noticeably absent from the decor made him unable to judge just how long he’d slept. All he remembered was a man masked in shadows holding a gun. His identity was a mystery, although, he had a feeling he ought to know him.

The room around him was strange, decorated in shades of brick red and gray. Obscure artwork from ages long ago hung on the walls and one of a kind furniture dotted the room. Mike was sure that the furnishings in this room alone cost a small fortune. The pale torch-like ambient light reflected off the shiny wooden surfaces casting refracted rays onto the walls. The effect was startling.

Although he felt like he hadn't slept in days, Mike knew he'd been unconscious for quite a while. His legs were wobbly, barely able to support his weight and his stomach cried out for food. How long had it been since he'd eaten anything? His surroundings were strange, he was hungry, and he didn't want to stay cooped up in this room any longer.

Mike peeked out the door and into the hallway. The image of the man with the gun still at the front of his mind. Maybe he could get out of here before anyone discovered he was missing. What he was really interested in was why? Why was he kidnapped in the first place? He vaguely remembered Carrie asking him about Gina. How did she know Gina, and what did Gina have to do with this?

The hallway was quiet. The red and gray tones spilled out into the corridor casting the house with an eerie presence. He was just waiting for pipe organ music to thunder down the hallway like in some old black and white horror movie. Instead, lightening flashed and an instant later a crash of thunder. Perfect setting outside for how he felt. He jumped a little at the noise and took a few deep breaths to calm his pounding heart.

At the bottom of the stairway, he spied the front door. That was his goal, escape. Making a run for it, Mike dashed down the stairs and before he could close his hand over the knob, a voice stopped him.

"Going somewhere?" Mike turned to find Shane Donovan standing in bare feet wearing a burgundy robe and sipping coffee.

"Shane?" Mike stuttered.

"Mike, we need to talk. Come into the parlor." Shane gestured to his right.

All Mike could think at that moment was, come into the parlor, said the spider to the fly. Why did he think following him would be the biggest mistake of his life?

***

Carrie heard the footsteps before she actually saw the man and felt his presence before she ever heard the foot falls. It was a familiar presence. One she had unconsciously felt her entire life but never noticed until now. She grabbed the nearest thing she could get her hands on. A fire extinguisher. She hid next to the door waiting for the man to enter and pass her.

Craig watched from his place on the floor. The pains in his stomach were getting worse. He knew exactly what was wrong with him. His insulin level was whacked out and he needed to level it off or he'd go into a coma. He wished he knew where his jacket was. He had a candy bar stuck in the breast pocket for just such occasions but it was definitely not on this plane. Probably back at the SIU Airport, lying on the floor somewhere with his new pair of expensive Ray Ban's. Just his luck he'd lose them three days after buying them. Nancy would have a fit if she found out how he'd lost the new pair. Hell, she had a fit about just about anything these days. Her daddy was letting her loose. She was on her own now and had only Craig to watch over her and to provide her with money. She needed him to win the chief of staff campaign. Not only to boost her ego but to show her father that she was cut from the same cloth as he.

Carrie watched the man pass her, swung the extinguisher like a bat effectively knocking him to the floor. In a frenzy, she grabbed his wallet.

"What are you doing? It's not enough to clobber the guy? You have to rob him too?"

"Oh, shut up, Craig. I'm not robbing him. I'm checking to see who he is and where he lives." The license said Ethan Fairchild, Smith Island. There weren't too many houses on Smith Island. They could easily check them out and hopefully find Mike in the process. It was their only lead. And she for one had a good feeling about it.

The man recovered faster than Carrie expected and grabbed for her. On pure instinct, Craig reached for the silver canister she was holding and pulled it from her grasp swinging it at the man making a sickening impact with his skull. He fell to the floor again but this time she couldn't see him breathing.

"I can't believe you did that." Carrie stared up at Craig while checking to see if the man was still alive.

"What did you want me to do Carrie? Let him kill you? He does have a gun." Craig kicked away Ethan's jacket exposing the muted black pistol near his armpit. Carrie gulped at how close she could have come to death. "He kidnapped us, he deserved it."

"Whether he deserved it or not isn't the point. I would have liked to have gotten a little more information out of him than just the name Smith Island."

***

A strange feeling passed over Kevin Fairchild. He'd been in this particular commuter plane a million times but today something was different about it. As he walked toward the door, he couldn't believe what he saw. His brother, Ethan, passed out on the floor and Carrie Brady standing over him. He knew he'd need a convincing cover, so he decided to pose as airport security. Holstering his gun in the waistband of his pants, he approached them slowly trying to remember the Oklahoma accent he'd used in a case once.

***

A figure loomed above them hauntingly back lit by the hanger lights. In the doorway, he appeared a huge massive man with nearly glowing eyes. As the man came toward them, Carrie screamed. He ignored her and bent to check on the man, lying on the floor she had come to know as Ethan Fairchild.

"Damn," he glanced up at Carrie hoping she didn't recognize him. Craig was still doubled over in pain. "Airport security. What's going on here?"
***

Carrie expelled a huge sigh of relief. She explained to Kevin the unbelievable story of how Ethan kidnapped them. He stood in wonderment listening to her ramble about what had happened to her. More than she knew lie beneath the escapades of this day. Not everything in her day was as it seemed, even objects sitting right before her eyes could vanish in an instant in the holographic rooms of ISA Headquarters, which is where he assumed Shane had taken them.

"And this all happened tonight?" He laughed trying to sound like he didn't believe her. But he knew what she said was true. It had to be. It was Shane's style to kidnap his own niece to get information out of her. He couldn't believe Shane would stoop to such a level but it wasn't surprising. He had even been involved in Marlena's kidnapping way back on the Stockholm case. Oh, no one ever knew of his involvement. Shane had seen to it that it had become strictly classified information. But Kevin was a curious computer nerd and had hacked his way into the Legacy database one night over four years ago. He had discovered a lot of useful information. Information he'd never get to divulge but he felt protected knowing he had some dirt on Shane Donovan if he should ever get out of line.

"My car is just beyond the runway in that direction," Kevin said as he pointed toward the shadowy area of the parking lot. "Wait for me there, I have a few more things to do before I can leave tonight."

to Part 8

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