|Drop the Gun, Jake
Author: LittleRedDog PM
Those four words. Simple words. A command, a silent plea. But, what if they are said to a man on whom the world has turned it's back?Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama - Words: 1,954 - Reviews: 5 - Favs: 4 - Published: 06-01-08 - Status: Complete - id: 4293125
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Drop the Gun, Jake
Those four words. Simple words. A command, a silent plea. But, what if they are said to a man on whom the world has turned it's back?
Author's notes: This takes place during the climax scene of the "Get Foley" episode.
Call me a drama queen (my tiara is here somewhere. It may have fallen into my morning Bucket-o-Coffee), but I thought this scene was played way too low-key, so I made some stuff up.
I would like to thank StuckHereWithNoTV for kindly performing the duty of Beta Reader.
Disclaimer:All legal rights to Jake 2.0 belong to someone who hasn't released the series on DVD, yet.
Jake's thoughts between "Drop the gun, Jake." and "The man who trained me."
We stepped out of the customs terminal onto the shipyard's loading apron. Derek, the big security guard, had Caesar in an arm lock, the other guard held Caesar's Ingram M11 on Chewy. I hope he hasn't messed with the safety slide in the submachine gun's trigger guard, as I'd prefer not to take a nine mill slug in the back. The third guard is bringing up the rear with Leo. Must be losing my touch, I figured he wouldn't be getting up any time soon. I'd gone out first, although I don't know why we couldn't have waited for the authorities inside, where it was marginally warmer. Derek was just antsy; guess he needed to work off a shit-load of anxiety. Getting almost killed will do that.
Too bad--the way it went down. If Derek hadn't tried to stop us from snatching those bearer bonds. If he hadn't torn Caesar's mask off. If Caesar hadn't decided to kill the guards. If all had gone according to the plan. I'd have popped that safe code, grabbed my share, and been on my merry way.
Two million dollars would have bought me a lot of camouflage.
According to the NSA file I'd hacked into I was an agent "disavowed". A real bad-ass. Sold weapons, done armed robbery, grand larceny, every kind of assault there was--why I'd stick at eliminating a few witnesses--I couldn't guess. One minute I'm robbing the place and the next I'd triggered the alarm system and started swinging on the guys I'd come in with. Nobody dies. It hadn't been a conscious decision. Just a gut reaction. Stupid, considering the consequences, but there it is.
Taking out Caesar and his gang had been easy. Convincing the security men that I meant them no harm and getting them to let me call the NSA doctor so she could call in her cavalry had been harder. She said they were already moving and knew where I was. Now how the hell did they know that?
Our breaths come out in thin puffs of mist. Damn, it's cold out here. The night is so black that beyond the warehouse lights the harbor water is completely invisible. Other senses verify that water is nearby. The tide shoulders against the concrete wharf; it's coming in with sluggish and heavy slaps, smelling more of fuel and decay than saltwater. The port's sodium security lights are saturating the buildings and pavement with a dull orange light, an unclean hue that would deny a rat a sheltering shadow. The space beyond the chain link gates where the get-a-way car was parked is depressingly empty. Caesar's wheelman must have booked it when he heard the alarm go off.
Everything looks like I feel; grimy and hopeless.
Two black sedans come around the end of the line of buildings fast and jerk to a stop several yards in front of me. All eight doors spring open. From the leading car a slender black woman and two big white guys jump out from the passenger side. From the other side a man driver and behind him, the doctor. Four more men come from the second car. This must be the NSA. Armed to the teeth, all of them. Well, maybe not the doctor, I can't see that much of her from this angle.
Everything goes into slow-motion, like when you're suckered into a squeeze-play between second and third base and you know it's over. You're just waiting for the tag.
I'm still on an adrenaline buzz from the aborted heist, my senses are raw, every circuit in feedback. Itchy for movement. I have that feeling crawling up the backs of my legs and backs of my arms, I feel like I'm back at the club, getting ready to step up. Those nanite things are not big on contemplation.
Heartbeats, six behind me, and nine in front; the driving thumps, my head is full of the chaos. I can't keep focused. The smell of fear and anger hangs in the air like sewer gas. The tension is almost visible. Every instinct is screaming for escape. A wonder no one else hears them.
The seawall is close on my left. A pivot, two strides, maybe three, and a deep dive. I'd be underwater before anyone could get off a shot. An accurate shot. I could make it. Every nerve demands action. Run! Hide! Get away! Go! Move! I'm barely holding it together, if I blink I'm gonna explode.
I have to look calm, in control. That's the first thing I learned living on the streets down here. Hesitate, show weakness or fear, that's an invitation for a stomping. The last thing I need to do is tick off some overstrung trigger finger.
I make my feet walk forward. No hurry. Calm down. Think.
Run? And go where? Do what? More club fighting? Thieving? More flophouse rooms that stink of depravity and mildew? Waiting for the knock at the door, for a car to pull up beside me one night? Or maybe just a flash at the corner of my eye, just enough to let me know I'll be dead before I can twitch? Me and my little nanite roomies are a secret government experiment gone bad. I'm a threat to national security. They'll never quit looking for me. I'll never be safe.
My hands are stiff in the cold air. The thin leather gloves are tight over my swollen knuckles, still cut and bruised from breaking that guy's teeth in my last fight. My right kidney aches from a well-aimed steel-toed boot; that skin-head was little, but fast and dead accurate. I am tired, so tired. These people from the car. A black woman. A man, dark with dark hair, Hispanic, maybe. Behind him, the doctor. She said people cared about me. These people? Everyone had a gun. Everybody wants something! hissed a voice in my head. Run!
The driver, the dark man, is walking toward me, pistol carried two-handed, muzzle down. Steady, but wary. The look in his eyes tells me I've come close enough. I stop. He stops.
The man's stare drops to my middle, to the submachine gun in my hands. I'd forgotten I was carrying the little Ruger, cradled like a baby. It had seemed so natural, like a part of me. Maybe I was what they said: rogue, "armed and extremely dangerous".
"Put the gun down, Jake."
Duarte. I don't know this man. I only remember a man on a bridge, the name on his jacket was Duarte. My file reported I "...refused to come in, assaulted a superior officer..." Duarte.
What a joke. I'd just been shot twice, chased through the woods by a maniac with a gun intent on finishing the job. Not a single clue who I was, who anybody was. Guys come out of the dark, trap me on a bridge, yelling and waving assault rifles. I passed out. If the handrail had been higher, I would have dropped on the bridge instead of pitching over it into ice water. As it was I was lucky to come to and get to the riverbank before I drowned.
A best friend who wasn't a friend. A loving wife who wasn't a wife. Or loving. A stranger in a diner, who wasn't a stranger, but a NSA doctor, tracking me down. Betrayal. Nothing but lies. But...
What if everything was a lie? Nineteen days and twenty nights. All I could remember out of a whole lifetime. The doctor had called him Kyle Duarte. The man who trained me.
"Kyle." I put as much conviction into it as I could.
The man's eyes widened, he looked relieved. His weight shifted back slightly. "Do you know who you are?"
Way to go all existential on me, Agent Duarte. No. I don't. That would be the point of me standing in the middle of this midnight gun show.
I did know I wasn't rogue. It wasn't in me. No matter what the rap sheet said. For better or worse I'd made my decision back in the warehouse. I'd stand by it. If they marched me behind the building and tried to put a bullet in my head--well--I would deal with that if it happened.
Behind the agency cars two Black and Whites squealed to a halt. A police response van close behind wallowed into a turn that blocked the road as an escape route. Strobe lights flashed. Uniforms hustled out of the vehicles. More guns.
It's now or it's never. I can see the doctor over Duarte's shoulder. She's scared, trembling, her hands gripping the car door. She is so pretty. Seems so fragile, but she's not. The woman that fell asleep in my arms that night is strong. I had wrapped myself around her and let it seep into me. I had never felt stronger. Or safer. That I would trust. A leap of faith.
"Yes. The man you trained." I carefully flip the weapon and offer it to Duarte, butt first. Duarte smiles.
Suddenly, the world lets out a breath it had been holding.
Weapons' safeties click like a chorus of crickets. Nice sound.
Duarte steps forward holstering his handgun and slides the Ruger out of my hands.
Guards and captives and police mill around me. I catch bits of conversation as they sort things out, most of it I just let blur. "Any casualties?" "No, thanks to him." "Let's get them out of here." I feel oddly detached from events now. A cop appears and puts a hand on my arm, but the black woman intercepts him and draws the officer aside for a private conversation.
In their place stands the doctor, my doctor, looking up at me. She had said her name was Diane and that was the name on my NSA files. Diane Hughes, MD, PhD. I was glad that was true. I like that name. It suits her. Her face is flushed. She has been crying. Her eyes are all shiny. I want to hug her to me, but I don't dare reach for her. I want to tell her things, but my throat is all closed up. I can hardly breathe.
I don't know if I'm a religious man, but I'm praying. Take anything you want from me: my freedom, my past, my future. Please don't take the memory of how this woman is looking at me right now.