|Lost Among The Angels
Author: Doug2 PM
Paige disapppears while visiting her uncle in LA.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Drama/Fantasy - Paige M. & Piper H. - Words: 7,045 - Reviews: 2 - Favs: 4 - Published: 05-22-06 - Status: Complete - id: 2951721
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Lost Among The Angels
The roar of the jet engine drowned out Phoebe's thoughts as she stared out the window watching the suburbs of Los Angeles pass beneath her. Freeways, houses, palm trees and bright blue swimming pools flew underneath her on their way to LAX.
"For the first time in four years one of us takes a vacation and 'wham-o' something goes wrong!" said Phoebe shouting over the noise.
"Hey, I was against it from the start, but Paige insisted she didn't want to spend her vacation staring at the same four walls in her room like she always does," complained Piper as she first flipped through the boring airline magazine and then stuffed it back in the pocket in front of her.
"It must be nice to have a job and then have a chance to take a vacation. All I ever have is free time. Besides Piper, she was going to LA to visit her father's brother, the only living relative of her foster family. After finding us she's had this obsession with making contact with finding all her relatives foster or otherwise," sighed Phoebe looking away from the window.
"Phoebe, that was two weeks ago! She was supposed to be gone only five days. We're lucky that we didn't need the Power of all Three of us in that time. Those 'you know what's' don't take time off!" said a peeved Piper in a hushed tone.
"Down girl. We'll probably find her shacked up with a new guy having completely lost track of time. Not all of us are strapped to significant others!" Phoebe reminded her sister. "And maybe she was feeling left out."
"Yes, but magical heritage or not, you'd think she would check in with her sisters. That's what really worries me," said Piper just a little calmer. Piper knew she hadn't been completely accepting Paige though inside she felt quite differently.
"You really are worried about her? It's more than just having the power of three to save our own skins? Right?" asked Phoebe.
"Of course I am. I may be hard on her, but she has a lot more catching up with Prue gone. And sometimes she doesn't seem to care," lamented Piper.
Phoebe shook her head. "Oh, no. She cares. I just think she's overwhelmed. I know I was!"
Driving down Wilshire Blvd, they found the address that Phoebe had gotten off the internet. The Halliwells would have been there sooner, but Phoebe kept on insisting on renting the cute little blue Firebird that she insisted match HER personality.
"Nice little neighborhood," remarked Phoebe.
"Too subtropical for me. Can you see palm trees at the end of our street? Give me a break!" said Piper getting out of the car.
Piper could have sworn she had seen palm trees there from time to time, but then she has seen lots of strange things since their witch heritage was revealed to them four years before.
Walking past endless colored rock designs where the lawn should have been and more plastic lawn decorations than Phoebe had seen in a lifetime, she hopped up the last of the steps and rang the doorbell. A tall thin middle-aged gentleman with blond hair answered the door.
"Yes? Can I help you?" he asked with a slightly nasal sounding voice.
"Wesley Mathews?" inquired Phoebe.
"That would be me," he shot back looking slightly bored at the question.
"Well, we're looking for Paige Matthews. She came down to visit you two weeks ago," asked Phoebe anxiously standing on her toes.
"Paigie? Oh, she left last Friday or was it Wednesday? She came and went as she pleased. I really didn't see her that often. And who might you be?" he asked sounding a bit condescending.
Piper shot back, "We're her sisters!"
His eyes opened wide. "Really? And that would make us?"
"No-thing! She was adopted!" said Piper sounding a bit angry.
Phoebe put her hand up and pushed Piper back a bit. "She only found out about us recently. We are her two half-sisters."
Looking a little amused he retorted, "So together that makes you one full sister?"
As Piper started to raise her hands, Phoebe pushed them back down. "Easy! I never thought of it that way," she smiled trying to keep the conservation civil. "We're really worried about her. Where did you see her last?"
"Oh, last week sometime here at the house. In the den, I think. She was in and out of the house quite frequently," he replied getting tired of the whole conversation.
"We need somewhere to start looking. Can we please have a look?" asked Phoebe sweetly though she did not like this guy anymore than her older sister.
"All right. Come on in whoever you are," he yawned.
"Phoebe. Phoebe Turner and my sister Piper Wyatt," said Phoebe quickly. "And thank you for letting us into your lovely home." Piper still looking peeved looked around at the bright colors and odd décor glanced to the ceiling at Phoebes' own lies that were an attempt at polite conversation.
Mr. Matthews smiled slightly with pride. "A person's home should really make a statement."
"How about, 'Taste be damned!'" Piper whispered to Phoebe.
"The den is in there. She used the washroom on the right," he said waving in the general direction. "Excuse me. I have something on the stove."
The room was quite unkempt and the pullout bed still had unmade sheets of the worst colors on it. The sisters found Paige's toiletries in the bathroom and her overnight bag in the closet.
"Something smells around here besides the wallpaper. I don't SEE any evidence of demonic intervention. She just never came back for her things. Look! That's her favorite lipstick. Only her purse is missing," exclaimed Phoebes searching through the bathroom.
"Well, gather all this stuff up. Just hope she's in the city!" said Piper who grabbed Paige's bag and looked for anything that was missing.
Paige's uncle returned licking his fingers and enjoying it immensely. Piper looked cross at him. "Looks like she left all her stuff. Any idea where she might have run off to?"
"My. That is strange. When she stopped hanging around I figured her visit was over. My brother said that she something of a wildcat. Always in trouble. Very flighty. Didn't surprise me that she ran off," he said glancing around the room.
"Well, we'll just gather up her things and try to find her," said Phoebe. "Thanks for your help," she said with a hint of sarcasm.
"If you find her, let me know. I don't want to keep worrying about her," he said not changing his tone.
"Yea, in a pig's eye!" mumbled Piper.
In the parking lot of a local Wal-Mart, Piper and Phoebe spread out a map of the City of Angels. Pulling from her purse she removed their scrying crystal. It swung back and forth for several minutes and then came to stop on a part of central L.A.
"Bingo. One witch quickly found," exclaimed Phoebe joyfully.
"If it's our sister. How many witches are in this city? Not our usual territory," sighed Piper.
Entering the Wendell section of the inner city of Los Angeles, Piper shook her head at the old burned out buildings and homeless people hanging out on the sidewalks. Phoebe took care of the map trying to pinpoint Paige. Unlike some times, the scry crystal pointed them through the city like a magical cop sitting next to them giving them directions.
"To the left. Now straight, no to the right. There!" Phoebe said and the stone suddenly pulled them back in the direction they had come. Piper slammed on the brakes and pulled the car next to well-worn county welfare clinic.
Phoebe cautiously got out of the car. "God, I hope it's wrong!"
Phoebe and Piper entered through the glass doors and approached the woman at the reception desk. "We don't usually find our demons in places like this. Excuse me," Phoebe asked the overworked county employee at the front desk. "We're looking for someone. Our sister. Paige Matthews!"
"Um. No one by that name in our computer, but then we have 23 Jane Does in here right now," she replied pointing to the screen.
Raising her hand a bit Phoebe asked, "Why don't you know their names?"
"Honey. Most of them are sleeping something off. We get the worst of the homeless cases here. Can you describe her?" she responded a bit sympathetically.
"Five three. One hundred ten pounds. Twenty-five. White. Blue eyes. Dark brown hair. A mole by her mouth. I really don't know what she was last wearing," said Piper.
The woman pursed her lips. "Hmm. Three possible matches for young white women. Sam! Show these women Jane Doe's 56-02, 72-02 and 74-02."
"Sure thing, Mrs. Bradley. Ladies come with me," the volunteer orderly asked taking them into the back ward.
Walking through a ward of homeless and those with broken homes, most were asleep, but some looked up at Piper and Phoebe. In their eyes they were searching for something. Piper felt helpless not knowing what she could do for them. Helping the innocent had become second nature to her, but there was so much suffering and misery in that room that it would take the witches a lifetime to fix.
The first woman he showed them was more Latino than white and was not Paige. Piper was calm only for a minute as he motioned toward Jane Doe 72-02. Even though she couldn't see the face, the dirty mat of hair and the way she held her pillow told Piper that it was definitely Paige.
"Whoa!" cried Piper shortly as tears formed in her eyes.
"My God!" sniffed Phoebe as she went over, turned Paige over and found a battered, bruised and unconscious Paige. Her eyes had dark circles around them and her face and skin was dirty and blotchy. She wore nothing but a dirty patient's gown. Piper took her arm and squeezed her hand tightly and found her arm black and blue from multiple needle injections.
"It's the newbies that mess it up so badly. Really hurts them when they shoot up and then they try it again just to get rid of the pain. I take it this is your friend!" the orderly said pointing to the limp figure on the cot.
"Yes, this is our SISTER. How do we get her out of here?" asked Phoebe now cradling her head.
"Quickly," snapped Piper.
"Just make arrangements with a hospital to admit her. She won't be turned over to just anyone when she's in this state," he replied.
"Come on, Paige. Come back to us!" pleaded Phoebe still holding her head.
Two days later a very tired Piper and Phoebe sat beside Paige waiting and praying for her to finally wake up. Her time in Parkside Memorial Hospital had brought some of the color back to her face, but she was still a pale version of the sister they had only known for half a year.
Paige began to moan for the first time in two days. Phoebe woke Piper up as they cautiously approached her bed. More moaning. Her eyes popped open as she screamed a sound so painful and so terrifying that the sisters had never heard in all of their demon and warlock fighting days. She sat up quickly with a look of horror on her face as she began to bat at and brush off unseen creatures from all over her body. Piper tried to approach her as a nurse ran in, pushed her away and held Paige down.
"The detox in 415 is awake," the nurse called over the intercom as she continued to hold Paige down. Though settling down, Paige was still hyperactive in trying to brush the invisible creatures off.
"NO, no. Get 'em off. GET THEM OFF!" Paige yelled out in a voice that Piper and Phoebe did not recognize.
An intern and nurse ran in with an emergency cart. Two hold her down while the new nurse gave her an injection. Still complaining, Paige finally slowed down, quieted down and drifted back to sleep. A new IV was set up to replace the one Paige had destroyed a few minutes before.
"Is she OK now?" asked Phoebe who approached the first nurse.
She shook her head. "I am afraid not. She'll go through several cycles like that as we slowly bleed the poison out of her. Each time it may be a little easier, but it will still be awhile before you recognize your sister or she recognizes you. She has a long journey ahead of her."
"As long as she gets better. Thank you," said Phoebe.
Day after day Phoebe and Piper kept a vigil by Paige's side. Each day her drug therapy increased, as did her periods of consciousness. Day and night followed again by day. The color returned to her cheeks and she looked more like the girl they met at Prue's funeral.Still no hint of recognition of them from Paige. Only the rambling cries and screams of her tormented soul.
Ten days after Phoebe and Piper first ventured into the City of Angels, Phoebe was asleep in Paige's room while Piper was rustling up some food at a local deli to save them from the same old cafeteria cuisine that the hospital offered. After a restful night's sleep, Paige turned over and opened her eyes. Carefully she sat up for her left arm was a pincushion of needles connected up to IV's hanging from the ceiling and monitors stacked behind her bed. Asleep peacefully in the corner was her sister Phoebe Turner.
"Um, like Phoebes. PH-PH-OEBES!" she called out with a dry hoarse voice.
Phoebe smiled and stirred. "No, Piper. Sleep. Nothing to eat. Please let me rest a bit," said the very stressed out and tired middle Halliwell sister.
Paige looked up as if saying a prayer for strength. "PHOE-BE, IT'S ME PAIGE. CAN I GET A LITTLE 411 AROUND HERE!" she shouted in a very hoarse voice.
Phoebes slipped down from her position against the wall and woke up in a start. "What? Oh, Paige. P-A-I-G-E. OH my God! You're up and awake!"
"Unlike you there. How'd I get here and why this acupuncture treatment?" she asked pointing to her arm as Phoebe came over and hugged her very carefully.
"You don't know how good it is to she you, Paiger! We have been so worried, that is Piper and I," cried Phoebe through her tears.
She shook her head slightly. "Well, thanks. I really do appreciate that, but what has been going on with me? My mind's a blank after coming down to L.A."
Phoebe sat down on the bed looking concerned and took her hand. "Sweetie. We hope that you could tell us. We found you over a week again in a county detox center. You've been shooting up some pretty high grade heroin."
"No way! That is not me. I don't even touch liquor. You know that, Phoebe," said Paige with horror in her eyes.
"That's what makes it so strange. You just seem to disappear from your Uncle's house and into oblivion. If it wasn't for our magic, you might still be lost to us. But you've been found and that the important thing!"
Paige smiled and then she put her hand on her head as if she had a headache. Screaming she looked strangely at Phoebe and then started another attack of the D.T.s. The nurse ran in and put her back to sleep. Afterwards Phoebe adjusted her covers as Piper came back in the room.
"Good news! She woke up and recognized me, but her brain is a blank on how she got this way. Poor thing!" Phoebe said quietly.
"Whoa. That would be good, but why the extra long face?" asked Piper.
"Another bout of screams and hysteria. Piper, I don't think we're ever going to completely get our sister back the way she was," explained Phoebe.
0Piper shook her head. "I do not believe that. It may take time, but we are not losing this one like Prue. I will not accept that. I will not allow that!"
"Only time will tell, Piper. And it's really all up to Paige," said Phoebe sadly as she crawled into Piper's arms.
With her good periods getting more frequent than her bad ones, her doctor felt she was ready to be released. And Paige was READY to go home.
"Hey, that's the last new relative I ever look up. First time I do that I find out that I'm a magical you know what. Second time I wind up in intensive care. Get me back to something I know and keep me there," Paige said as she threw the last of her clothes into her bag. "I am out of here!" Picking up the bag her arm shook nervously. She dropped the bag and held her arm tightly looking very scared.
"Paige. It's just going to take time to get all that poison out of your system. I'll take the bag," said Piper gently hugging her scared sister.
"Like I may never fully recover from it. That's what really scary about being addicted to something. Just get me out of here!" she sniffed grabbing her coat. "I want to go home with you guys. And be alone!"
"Don't you want to know what happened to you? There might be more demonic circumstances connected with your disappearance," suggested Phoebe quietly. "There could still be more unknown danger lurking out there, Paige."
"DON'T TELL ME ABOUT CHASING DEMONS! I just spent three weeks in hell! So a nasty scaly thing that Piper can blast into infinity would be a welcomed change!" cried Paige as she really broke down this time. "I may never get rid of these shakes. My life is ruined!" Paige sobbed in Piper's arms as Phoebe came over and hugged her too.
"Hey, we're here and we'll get you through this, Paige. You just have to believe it. Besides before we met you didn't even have a sisterly shoulder to cry on. Though it is getting rather soggy there," quipped Piper smiling and pushing back Paige's hair over her ears.
Paige looked up and laughed just a bit. "It does feel good to have someone. Thanks, Piper."
Piper looked into Paige's eyes. "Well, all you need is a little peaceful downtime and you'll be back keeping us in line in no time. Umm, though Phoebe is right. You aren't really safe until we find out what happened to you. Demon or mortal, you could still be in danger, sweetie."
"No, no, NO! I don't need to fill in the spaces. My memory is just fine, thank you. Adding extra scenes to this horror movie I have been through will only give me more reasons to wake up at night screaming!" insisted Paige as she slowly backed off from Piper.
"Hmm. Well, then I guess that's it," said Phoebe with a strange glint in her eye as Piper gave her a strange nod not knowing what Phoebe was up to.
"Damn those directions! We are completely turned around here!" cried Phoebe as she drove down smaller and smaller avenues through worse and worse neighborhoods.
"You were at least conscious all this time in L.A. Don't you know where the airport is, Phoebes?" asked a very peeved Paige from the backseat.
"I don't think Phoebe is taking you home just yet, Paige. You are going to have to face this problem, sister dear!" said Piper. "Your trouble may not just affect you. All of our lives could be in danger and the sooner you come to grips with it the better!"
"Fine. You two betrayed me. Let me out of here!" Paige screamed while reaching for the door.
Piper grabbed her arm. "Paige! The last time you were in this neighborhood you ended up in the detox ward. Don't try for the psych ward. I've been there!"
"Over there! Number 3450. Actually, Paige, the county picked you up in that alley near those dumpsters," pointed Phoebe to an alley not unlike ones they had chased demons and warlocks though. She pulled the car up behind a burned out minivan.
"Paige, it's the only lead we have. If nothing comes of it, then we will take you home. I promise," said Piper sounding a little too much like Prue.
Paige shook her head and then relented. "You go look. I'm staying here. Understand? I'll guard the car. You go play police detective," she said turning around and crossing her arms in defiance. She refused to move an inch.
"You bet, sweetie. We'll be right back. Phoebe!" said Piper cocking up one eye and pointing to the alley.
"We'll be just a minute, Paige," Phoebe said reassuringly. Paige just curled up in a ball in the back wishing the world would go away.
There was nothing special about this back alley that was filled with unused backdoors, trash containers and old unidentifiable castoffs. Phoebe kicked at the debris with her foot.
"Nothing really. Not even a …" she started to say as her hand touched the dirty brick wall and her consciousness disappeared into yet another premonition. The world went into shades of gray and white. She saw a woman's body being dumped behind the trash containers by two men. One had a lightning bolt tattooed over his right eye and he called the other man Walsh. Finally she saw the body was that of Paige and then Phoebe returned to Piper.
"You O.K.?" asked Piper. "I take it we have another clue."
"Two men. I saw them leaving Paige right here. Just dumping another human being in the garbage. Those bastards. That was our SISTER!" Phoebe cried turning around and venting her anger by kicking the dumpster. It rolled and crashed against the brick wall.
"Watch those side kicks, Phoebes. You don't want to be hobbling around on a bad ankle right now," said Piper trying to hold her still. "Any side of magical evil?"
Phoebe shook her head as they headed back to the car. "Just a couple of mortal thugs. I doubt that something demonic would have left anything for us to find. Thank God."
Phoebe opened the backdoor and shook Paige awake. "Hey sweetie, we back! Um, she a guy with a lightning bolt tattoo or hear of a guy named Walsh?"
"Tattoo? No! Walsh? Walsh?" she said shaking the sleep from her head. "Um.. way back at USC, there was this creep that was in our dorm. Terry Walsh. He traveled with a sleazy crowd and hit on all the girls. I guess he did the same to me. I really don't remember. It wasn't a high point of my collegiate life. Never saw him again after my junior year. Or there was a lawyer that used to handle pro bono cases at work that left last year and another family we knew at church when I was in elementary school," she said still curled up in a ball. "Are we finished here guys?"
"Nope. Next stop is Parker Center, Police Headquarters!" said Phoebe quite sure of herself as Paige turned over and moaned.
At the former location of Dragnet, Adam 12, CHiPS and other television police dramas, the Halliwell's sat in an interrogation room with Detective Frank Spindle and his partner Sam Miguel, the latter an acquaintance of San Francisco Police Inspector Darryl Morris.
Sitting in front of a computer printout, Detective Spindle looked a bit pensive. "Terrance Walsh, mainly known as Quicksilver Walsh. He has slipped through every attempt by the department to apprehend him. Mainly a small time crook working for others, but what hasn't he been in. Pushing narcotics, loan shaking, enforcement, passing counterfeit money, fencing stolen property, breaking and entering, armed robbery, car theft. Consider yourself lucky, Miss Matthews. He could have put a slug in your head when he left you for dead. County welfare found no evidence that you were sexually assaulted though you were obviously physically abused. You have my sympathy. Otherwise, we will keep your file open, but with your lack of memory assembling a case will be a long shot. Should you remember anything else, please contact us immediately."
Piper sat up stiffly looking very impatient. "THAT'S IT? Can't you at least bring him in for questioning? Hear his side of the story?"
"Without a strong statement from Miss Matthews, most judges would not consider that sufficient evidence to issue a warrant to bring him in for questioning. I'm sorry," said the Detective shaking his head.
"Why don't we just pay him a little visit Frank? Just see how he reacts? If he resists that would give us probable cause to at least bring him in. We need to get more scum like him off the streets," the Hispanic detective said trying to urge his partner to some action.
Detective Spindle looked at his partner a bit irritated. "Sam, we don't even have a current address on this scumbag. He may not even be in the city. And with the Keystone Killer still on the loose.. Well, I'm sorry. The file will remain open."
"..along with thousands of other unsolved crimes. We've had a little experience along these lines. Thank you, Detective. We won't take up anymore of your time trying to find the Keystone Kop!" said Piper quite indignantly pushing back her chair and motioning to her sisters.
"Yea, well. Thank you. I guess we better get home," sighed Paige who was just relieved to get it over.
"Thank you for coming in, Miss Matthews," Detective Spindle said standing up and opening the door for the ladies.
"Hey, ah. Can I have that info?" asked Phoebe really sweetly to Detective Sam Miguel.
"Not really, but if it helps. Sure," he replied as Phoebe slipped into her big bag mouthing to him, "Thanks!"
"Believe me, Miss Matthews. If you can't remember, then you're luckier than most victims. Good day, ladies," he said trying to sounding polite though his voice had a hint of blowing them off.
"Thank you," replied Paige, as she made sure she was the first one out. Through the station she ran heading for the car breathless by the time she reached it.
Piper and Phoebe caught up with her a couple of minutes later. "Now we have something to go on," Phoebes said pulling out the information on Mr. Quicksilver.
"Phoebe, give it a rest. We are going home!" cried Paige in exasperation. "We aren't Charlie's Angels!"
"OH. I wouldn't say that. We do good, know heavenly apparitions, are three women chasing bad things down strange dark allies, answering to disembodied voices to set things right. I think that about covers it," she said with a big Phoebe smile. "There's at least a cable movie in there somewhere."
Piper looked cross-eyed at her. "It's not like were going after the Source."
"Piper, we have used our magic to help those with non-magical problems. And right now our sister has that kind of a problem," exclaimed Phoebe staring straight into the disbelief in Piper's eyes.
"No, we have had enough. I am going home, even if I have to orb there!" cried Paige who was now on the verge of tears.
"Better not. No telling where you might end up. And we're running out of frequent flier miles to come and get you. I'm just as tired of this whole thing too, Paige. Let's just play out what few leads we have. And maybe all of us will sleep better knowing we did the most we could," said Piper smiling a bit at Paige.
"Then tomorrow and that's it? Right?" Paige said throwing her hands up.
"You got it!" shot back Phoebe.
Late into the night Phoebe tried her scrying. Back and forth over the map looking for the elusive Terrance Walsh. Back and forth. Back and forth. From north to south. From the mountains to the ocean. In the morning Piper found Phoebe asleep on the Wal-Mart map of greater Los Angeles.
"Hey, Sherlock. Wake up. It's time to head home. Let's leave the police work to the mortals. We may have some extra supernaturals to take care of back in the bay area, Phoebes. The trail is as cold as a last night's leftovers!" said Piper nudging Phoebes as she stirred.
"Ohh. Did I fall asleep here? I haven't done that since my Ethics final. OOHH, my back hurts! Geez," said Phoebe stretching. "What time is it anyway?"
"After eight. Let's get back home. My club is probably in the red and both our husbands probably can't remember what we look like. I'm trading the City of the Angels for my own personal one, Phoebes," smiled Piper still looking rumbled from her sleep.
"No, Piper. We have to help Paige. She has to be hurting, but she's just not showing it," said Phoebe pushing her own hair out of her face.
Piper shook her head. "I want to help her too, but without a clue, a sign, a premonition, where do we go? And I promised her it we'd head back to the Manor." Though she really empathized with Phoebe, Piper felt that enough was enough.
Paige still asleep started moaning and crying out.
"Piper just listen to her!" said Phoebe quietly as Paige started shaking and let out another blood curdling yell. Phoebe walked over to her. "She was like that all night. All nightmares and tied up in a knot."
"What she needs, Phoebe is medical attention and the support of her family. That will get her through, Phoebes," said Piper who came over and sat on the bed next to her.
"Physically, yes. But she needs to heal emotionally too. She's tough, but we have to get around her stubbornness to help her heal. She's got a bit of Prue in her for sure," suggested Phoebe who smiled as memories caused a slight glow within.
"No Phoebe. Let it rest. Home is what she really needs. She keeps saying that herself!" replied Piper.
"Piper, I hope you don't really believe it. With all the power we command, we must be able to help her. I HAVE TO DO SOMETHING. SHE IS OUR SISTER! And she has had a experience that she needs closure with whether she thinks it or not." Phoebe said in a stage whisper as not to disturb Paige who continued her uneasy sleep.
"Phoebes, that wasn't a Psychology degree you got. And our P3 magical boost is not just for little everyday mortal problems. There could be magical consequences," exclaimed Piper who was jus about ready to quit herself.
"Come on, Piper. One more time. I just have this sickening feeling that we are missing something like a demon that had a larger agenda for Paige or for the Charmed Ones. One quick spell to locate this scumbag. Come on. Let's pull together," she said smiling raising his eyebrows and looking totally Phoebe.
"Ummm. OK. After Paige wakes up on her own. And then we head home. Maybe this is the one we don't solve, Phoebes. Did you ever consider that, Sherlock?" griped Piper as she gathered around the map.
Two hours later a weary Paige woke up protesting being pulled into a Power of Three spell.
"One more time Paige, please," pleaded Phoebe.
"Only because I don't have the strength left to fight you on this, Glinda. What do we do?" asked Paige as she yawned at them.
Phoebe smiled. "Join hands and recite with me. Spirits of nature we summon thee,"
"SPIRITS OF NATURE WE SUMMON THEE."
"Heed our word, hear our plea."
"HEED OUR WORD, HEAR OUR PLEA."
"Our sister in pain asks for release."
"OUR SISTER IN PAIN ASKS FOR RELEASE."
"Show us the way to the hideous beast."
"SHOW US THE WAY TO THE HIDEOUS BEAST."
"That's a spell?" asked Piper looking worried. "Let's hope we don't locate some other scaly demon with it!"
The air began to circle the room while they could feel the charge of electricity bouncing between the three witches.
Phoebe crossed her fingers, picked up the crystal and began to scry again. Very quickly the crystal darted across the map coming to rest on an intersection not far from where Paige had been found.
"BINGO! We have a winner! Now let's go and find him!" cried out Phoebe as Paige and Piper moaned in annoyance.
Jumping into Phoebe's beloved little blue Firebird, the three sisters drove to a point a little west of the clinic where they had found Paige. Though the business district did not look much better, the old welfare housing apartments surrounding the corner seemed to be clean with families living in them. Parking the car they stood on the northwest corner of Phoebe's destination looking up at the buildings.
"Warlocks and demons usually stand out in the crowd, Phoebes. All the people in sight look pretty normal to me," quipped Piper. "I think we're wasting our time."
"No, just a few more minutes, please. I think we can still work this puzzle out, guys!" pleaded Phoebe looking around for anything odd.
Paige gave one last look just to appease Phoebe and something caught her eye. "That statue over there. The big ugly dog! It rings a bell though I don't know where I heard it."
In front of the tall brick apartment house across the street was an iron statue of a dog guarding the door that looked like a hound from hell. Crossing the street walking past various discarded toddler toys, Phoebe checked out the mailboxes inside the front door.
"No, Walsh," sighed Phoebe.
"Another dead end. Come on, sisters. We have a life back in the Bay area," said Piper turning to leave.
"Paige, are you sure about what you saw?" asked Phoebes
Paige shook her head yes. "It's all kind of fuzzy, but I think that it was recently like since I reached L.A."
"Hmm. Hey look at these names. Josh Emmet. And he lives alone. Remember that actor, Emmet Walsh?" said Phoebe who lit up with recognition.
"No!" replied Piper shaking her head.
"Back in the Sixties there was this movie actor named Emmet Walsh. He wasn't really well known so maybe this guy is our strange Mr. Walsh," explained Phoebe not sounding too sure of herself.
"Never heard of the guy, Phoebes. Miss Trivia of 2002 has struck again!" quipped Piper looking up to the ceiling.
Phoebe put her hands on her waist looking a bit peeved herself. "Hey, it's helped us more than once. Besides, it's Mrs. Trivia. See the ring on my finger? Let me check with the cops before we do anything else."
"They sure weren't real helpful yesterday, Phoebe," snapped Paige.
"Oh, I think we have one sympathetic ear!" said Phoebe with a twinkle in her eye.
"Right on the money, Mrs. Turner. Three years ago he was picked up for running numbers using the name Charles Emmet. With no resultant charge, that fact didn't make the summary we gave you. My partner and I will run down to court to get a search warrant. That might yield enough evidence to hold him," said Detective Miguel crackling over his cell phone.
"Well, THANK YOU, Detective. Give us a call if you find anything. You've been a big help," said Phoebe as she hung up the payphone. "I knew he would help us."
"He must be nice. I am surprised that he took your collect call," said Paige wearily.
"Hey, I did save him a buck or two in doing it," snapped back Phoebe.
"So like now we just hang around the hotel room? Getting a warrant could take like days!" complained Paige since those days could drag into weeks if the police did collect evidence on him and take him to trial.
"Nope. That usually doesn't stop the Charmed Ones!" smiled Phoebes.
In front of apartment 2D Phoebe gave a confident knock. A gruff looking well-worn guy wearing jeans and a Grateful Dead T-shirt in his late twenties answered the door.
"Yea? What do you chickies want?" he said as he eyed each of them looking straight through Paige.
"Paige?" asked Phoebe. Paige shook her head in the negative with just a hint of fear in her eyes.
Phoebe smiled. "Mr. Walsh?"
"Don't know him. You skirts must have the wrong apartment," he said slamming his door in their faces.
Paige breathed a bit easier. "Not the friendly type. I don't think he'll be open to any other similar overtures. Piper!" Phoebe said pushing her toward the door.
"Hey, whoa. Not so pushy! Hmm. Let's try a little surgical strike here!" Piper said flicking one finger blowing just the doorknob into oblivion.
"Ohh, I love that power!" whispered Phoebe as she kicked in the door.
Inside an apartment decorated in broken down castoffs the man nicknamed Quicksilver Walsh swung around with a sneer that would stop a charging bull.
"How the hell did you get in here?" he growled reaching for a desk drawer.
"Trade secret. Just like this!" explained Piper as she froze him solid. "Now let's see who's going to hold who captive. What a sty! Whew!"
"Good going, sis. Now, Paige. It is really up to you. Anything at all the least bit familiar in here! A sight, a sound, an aroma? If not, we're in big trouble!" said Phoebe laughing a bit nervously.
"You'd think I'd remember this place," exclaimed Paige as her lip turned down and she resisted the need to hold her nose. Scanning everything carefully she just shook her head, as nothing was the least bit familiar.
"Let's search this place fast. Someone is going to notice the broken down door," sighed Piper as Phoebe ran over and closed it.
Paige kicked through the trash on the floor, looked in one closet just piled with boxes and then found the bedroom door. Inside was more cast-off furniture including an old iron bed with a woman on it tied to the bedposts. She kept calling out in delirium while experiencing some unsettling hallucinations.
"Piper, Phoebe! Get in here!" Paige yelled going over to check on the woman. Twenty-two, blond and pretty. Her hands were bound in cloth tape and her arms were covered with needle marks similar to the ones they found on Paige.
"Oh my God!" exclaimed Phoebe as she checked the woman's pulse. "She's alive, but barely."
"That is one sick bastard. Looks like we found your tormentor, Paige. I'll go tie up Mr. Freeze in there. Paige, why don't you call Detective Miguel and the paramedics," said a very sad Piper. While she got mad at those evil magical things that wrecked havoc on their lives and the lives of innocents, the suffering caused by mortals upon other mortals really wrenched Piper's heart. In a twist of justice Piper bound up Walsh with the tape he used to bind his own victims.
Less than an hour later the two LAPD detectives walked into the apartment as Piper quickly unfroze the accused perpetrator.
"Wait! How'd I get this.. Who are you dames?" he called out to the room that was now felling up with emergency professionals.
Piper smiled ever so slightly. "Your worst nightmare buddy! Now fess up, clown. Did you kidnap our sister or not?"
"I ain't talking. I want my lawyer!" he cried out as he put his head down and ignored the throng of people.
"This time we caught him red-handed. I don't think he'll be bothering any more women," said Detective Miguel shaking his head at the scene. "He appears to just have an obsession with kidnapping woman and keeping them confined. You are one lucky lady, Miss Matthews. Now if we can just connect him to your case."
Paige perked up. "This might help. In those boxes in the closet you'll find a collection of ladies' shoes all neatly numbered including my own very fashionably blue pumps, which I do remember bringing down here to L.A. This evidence may solve quite a few missing person's reports, detective."
"But you still don't remember anything about him?" asked Detective Spindle.
"Nada. Nothing after I left my Uncle's house and got hook on that awful stuff," she said shivering as she thought about it.
Piper hugged her a bit. "Probably just as well. Believe me, it is better to forget the bad as long as you learn from it. He must have remembered you from school and added you to his list of victims."
"And don't go on vacations WITHOUT your sisters next time!" piped in Phoebe who joined in the hug.
"Hey, I'm not leaving my house, my work ..or you two wonderful sisters…for a long, long time!" exclaimed Paige. "That's it! Now I really want to be the one place that I truly feel safe! HOME!"