Sorry y'all! I know how annoying it is to have to wait so long for an update. I'll soon be done with university so I'll have more time to write. Please be patient. I am definitely NOT giving up on this story.
Your reviews are awesome and I thank all of you for taking the time to leave a few words after reading. It means a lot.
I hope you'll like this chapter and I promise I'll try to update sooner this time.
On another note, how awesome was this finale for us Root/Shaw fans? Haha.
The next day—or more accurately, hours later—Shaw woke up as the sun filtered through the curtains. She rubbed her eyes and sat up on her couch, kicking the blanket away from her. A quick glance at the alarm clock on the coffee table told her it was close to eight. Quietly, since Root was not up and about, Shaw slipped into the bathroom to take a shower. Once she was done, she got dressed in her usual black pants and top. Her morning routine was something she needed to keep her grounded. Get up, shower, eat breakfast. During her time as a government operative she had never had a day off. She was always on duty and ready to serve. Now that Shaw worked for Finch—or for a machine, she thought—she had more free time and she simply did not know what to do with it. At least her little ritual when she woke up hadn't changed.
Her phone buzzed once and she grabbed it as she was walking back toward the couch. She opened the text message which had come from Reese. He asked them to come to the Library because a new number had come up. Shaw typed a quick response and headed toward her bedroom where she knocked on the door.
"Wake up Root. We're heading to the Library in fifteen minutes."
She received no answer.
It took Shaw a couple of minutes before she realized that something was wrong. Root wouldn't oversleep. If anything, Root would be up before she was. Shaw went to retrieve her gun and swiftly made her way back to the bedroom. Slowly, she opened the door and peeked inside. It was empty.
"Damn it!" Shaw swore out loud.
She reached for her phone and pressed the button that would call Root instantly but after a few rings and no answer; she threw it on her bed.
"Fuck. I'm going to kill her."
Finch had given her one mission and it was to protect Root while she recovered. Now the hacker was gone and Shaw had absolutely no idea where to look.
Shaw chose to walk instead of taking a cab to go to the Library. She needed to clear her head and think of all the places that Root could have gone. Perhaps the Machine had given her a mission. But that didn't explain why she hadn't left Shaw a note. Root was still recovering after all. She had been close to death only a few weeks before. Was it what had happened the previous night that had made her flee? Could it be just because Shaw had rebuffed her? It seemed stupid in Shaw's mind but she would not put it past the hacker. It was possible that Root did not take rejection well.
The ex-ISA agent sighed and walked faster as she neared her destination. Maybe Root would be at the Library.
Harold did not say a word when she told him that Root had left unexpectedly but the look on his face told Shaw everything he did not dare say out loud. She had failed to keep the hacker safe and now they could only hope that Greer and his henchmen would not find her. Shaw and Reese were supposed to work on a new number but Finch decided that John would handle it alone and that Shaw should try to locate Root.
"Can't the Machine just give us her location?"
"I'm afraid the Machine does not communicate this way with me, Miss Shaw."
"Of course not," Shaw mumbled. "Isn't there a way for you to find out? I swear I'm going to put a chip on her the next time I see her."
"I can always try to track her cellphone but knowing Miss Groves she probably took precautions for that."
Shaw rolled her eyes and left the Library without another word. She would call Finch if she had any lead.
Root reappeared three days later at the Library. Shaw was coming in for her daily check-in and she saw the hacker standing in front of the window near the computers. Neither Finch nor John were in, though. She frowned.
"Harold took the dog out for a walk."
"What are you doing here?"
Root finally turned to face her, as Shaw walked closer to the center of the room.
"I have a location on Greer. I need to talk to Harold."
"The Machine… She gave the order to kill."
Shaw remained silent as Root's words sank in. Never before had the Machine asked of them to end someone's life.
"Why?" She asked after a moment.
Root sighed and stepped back to lean against the window; her arms crossed. She refused to look at Shaw, which was unnerving because it was not something she would normally do.
"I'm not sure. She probably believes that destroying the drives was only a temporary solution and that Samaritan has other ways to come online."
"Does it what?"
"Does Samaritan have other ways to come online?"
"I don't know," Root said quietly.
Shaw was about to ask why she had left the apartment without a word but Finch walked in with Bear and the dog immediately ran toward her. She crouched to greet him and waited until Finch sat down to get up again.
"Miss Groves, I'm surprised to see you here. I was under the impression that you had gone on one of your solo missions."
"I have news concerning Greer. Upsetting news, I think."
"What is it?"
"The Machine wants us to kill the old British guy," Shaw said flatly.
There was no need to sugarcoat it. Harold looked at her, his mouth slightly open in shock.
"I need to know if we're doing this, Harold, and I need to know fast."
His attention was redirected to Root once more.
"Miss Groves we do not kill people, we save them."
"If you don't kill Greer chances are he will kill you," she countered immediately. "I don't enjoy killing people, Harold, but if She wants me to do it, I will."
"Then why are you even here?"
"Because I want you to know. And because I can't do it alone. I will need help."
Root finally looked at Shaw, leaving no doubt about she meant. Finch sighed and raised one of his hands to his temple.
"We need Mr. Reese to be here for this discussion. If you want some coffee, help yourself. It might be a long wait since he's out on a case."
Shaw finally decided to confront Root after half an hour spent staring at her from across the room. Harold had retreated in an adjacent room with Bear, probably having an existential crisis, or whatever.
"Why did you leave?"
For a moment, it was as if Root hadn't even heard her, except that Shaw knew better, so she waited.
"I was giving you some space. I thought you'd like that."
"I was supposed to watch over you while you were in recovery."
"Oh please, Sameen, you and I both know that I'm perfectly fine."
"You still can't fight. I thought you wanted me to train you."
"And I didn't think you'd still want to after what happened the other night."
"Nothing happened," Shaw stated.
"Exactly," Root fired back.
Somehow during their exchange, the two women had stepped closer to each other and they were now standing toe to toe. Root was taller than Shaw but the smaller woman's charisma and energy rolled off of her in waves. Shaw was not one to be intimidated by someone taller than her. Her glare matched Root's. This was the type of situation that Shaw very much wanted to avoid when it came to Root, because being so close to her made Shaw think about things she did not want to think about. Like how easy it would be to push Root against the wall, or on the table, or—
Shaw snapped out of her thoughts when she realized that Root was smirking. The hacker stepped back and turned her back on Shaw to pour herself some coffee.
"If you want me to come back so badly, all you have to do is ask, Sameen. You're right, I did want you to train me," Root teased, insisting on the word "train."
"That's why you like me, even though you won't admit it to yourself."
"Make me," Root replied with a smug grin as she faced Shaw once more.
Shaw was ready to take the cup of coffee and throw it in her face when Reese emerged from the elevator.
"I hope I'm not interrupting anything," John said with a hint of a smile; his icy eyes focused on Shaw.
"No. You're not. Wait here. I'll get Finch."
Reese and Root watched her disappear in the next room and waited in silence for Finch and Shaw to join them. They had an important decision to make, a decision that could very well cost them their lives.