Hey guys, sorry I have not been able to update lately. My schedule has left very little time for writing, so I made this chapter a long one and I hope you all like it.
**Riley Neal, Gabriel Vaughn, Lillian Strand, Shenandoah and Nelson Cassidy, as well as the concept for Intelligence all belong to CBS. I own nothing.**
Flashbacks are in Italics
Back with Riley and Gabriel, Gabriel walked into the living room to find Riley starring at her phone which was sitting on the coffee table.
"Ry, I just put Lil down for her nap. What's wrong?"
"Lillian called today."
"Lillian?" Gabriel asked confused.
"Our old boss Lillian, from Cybercom."
"How did she get your number?"
"I don't know."
"Did she leave a message for you?"
"No. I don't know whether to ignore it or call her. What do you think Gabriel?"
"It is up to you." Gabriel said taking a seat next to her and smiling as she leaned into him as his arms went around her. "You just have to decide if you want to bring Lil into the chaos that was our lives. Remember, once we get a hold of Lillian or Nelson or even Doc, our lives speed back up. We have to decide between essentially being back with our family, or continuing on like we have. I just want you to do this for you and not because you feel like you have to."
"I think we should at least call her back and go from there." Riley said looking at Gabriel for his opinion.
"You can say no, but I have an idea."
"What is it?"
"I can set the computer up to video call with them."
"Let's do this before I convince myself not to." Riley said as she pulled her shortened hairstyle into a messy bun and slipped a sweater on to cover up the stained shirt, that was covered with food from Lilliana's refusal to eat lunch. Gabriel called up the video call software on their home computer and connected to Cybercom's server. The call was accepted by a perplexed looking Nelson, before he realized who the other callers were.
"No freaking way." He said in shock as he set the laptop screen to show on the big monitor. "Dad, Lillian, check out the screen." The two turned, surprised to see Riley and Gabriel, both of whom looked nervous.
"Gabriel Vaughn, it has been almost five years since we have spoken and all you have to say is 'hey'?" Lillian asked as she slipped back into her motherly role towards the two.
"What do you want me to say Lillian? You call Riley out of the blue and your surprised at our reactions? Let's say this, a call from back home is not something we expected."
"Gabriel, my call is less out of the blue than the call I received earlier on my phone, my private cell phone, no less. It seems that your daughter enjoys playing with cell phones. She managed to dial my number and imagine my surprise to hear your voice in the background, on a cell phone registered to a Riley Vaughn." Lillian said as though she had just caught something her kids were trying to hide.
"Wait a minute..." Riley said before pausing. "Gabriel, how many times have I told you not to leave her within reach of our cell phones? You know how she is, but at least we know where she gets it from." Riley said forgetting about being on video call.
"So it is true then?" Dr. Cassidy asked.
"What?" Both Riley and Gabriel responded.
"I am quite sure that you two are aware of what I am referring to." Both gave a confused look in response. "Still as blind as ever, I see. I am referring to the two of you being in a relationship and having a three year old daughter." Cassidy said with a laugh.
"Oh Riley, do not get angry with Lilliana over calling me. I had told her that I would not tell her parents that she had been playing with the cell phone."
"How did you..."
"I answered my phone like normal and she was ecstatic that I had the same name and then she told me her name was actually Lilliana. I have to say you two did a good job on creating such a cute little girl." Lillian said before they all heard a little girl saying 'up mama up' as she ran over to Riley. Riley just let out a sigh as she lifted the little girl up. The little girl squealed when she saw the faces on her parent's computer screen.
"Who they mommy?" Lilliana asked looking at all of the faces who were watching her in shock.
"They are daddy's and my friends.." Riley said before Gabriel cut her off.
"That is your aunt Lillian.." Gabriel said pointing out Lillian to his daughter. "And that is your grandpa Shen and your uncle Nelson." Gabriel said pointing them out to his daughter, respectively. "Guys, this is our daughter Lilliana Cassandra Vaughn and she is three, going on four." Gabriel said as she wormed her way from Riley to Gabriel. "Lilly, say hi to everyone?" He asked and they all laughed when she, in turn, buried her head in his shoulder.
"Why are you being shy Cass? You were talking with Lillian earlier on my phone." Riley asked and everyone saw Lilliana look at her mom before she started getting tears in her eyes. As she started to cry Riley took her and walked out of the room.
"Since when am I a grandparent?" Dr. Cassidy asked in surprise at Gabriel's introduction.
"Well, you were always saying I was a son to you, so in theory, that would make Lilliana your granddaughter and Nelson her uncle."
"And how do I end up being the aunt?" Lillian asked with a smile.
"It was that or nana Lillian and I just cannot see you as my daughter's grandmother, even though you treat me like your child."
"So this means you guys are coming back right?" Nelson asked. Right as Gabriel went to respond Riley walked back in without Lilliana.
"I put Cass back down for the rest of her nap. As for your question Nelson, we don't know because we just got everything to start going right here and I kind of like the laid back style of life." Riley said pausing. "And even if we do come back, can you honestly say no one will frame Gabriel for something? That is why we left, people knew that they could hold Gabriel and the chip over your heads and I am not going to go on the run again. It was bad enough when it was me and Gabriel on our own, better yet with a three year old. Or worse, they get our daughter and use her to get what they want. It would be my family on the line and I do not know if I can deal with that. It was bad enough seeing my partner get shot and not knowing whether that bullet was gonna kill him." Riley said as she started to get worked up.
"You okay Ry?" Gabriel asked as she wiped her eyes.
"Fine, I will be right back." She said before walking back out of the room.
"Guys I gotta go, but if you really want to, you can come here and visit. There is only one condition which is you don't mention anything about us coming back when Riley is around because it is something that is sensitive for her."
"When are you three going to be free?"
"We are both off for the next few days with the exception of Riley's lessons."
"Yeah, she picked up being a martial arts instructor and does lessons for the kids around here. Now I gotta go." He said before signing off and going to find Riley. He found her in their bedroom wiping her eyes.
"You okay Ry? You normally don't get upset."
"I don't know. Normally thinking back to what we went through when we first got here doesn't upset me, but I just started getting upset." Riley said thinking back to when they had first run from Cybercom.
Since escaping Cybercom with Gabriel barely alive, Riley Neal had yet to contact anyone who she worked with. No connection meant no ties, and no ties meant that they were virtually and physically off radar.
Gabriel Vaughn had deactivated his chip manually after Mei Chen had cyber rendered with him while he was being patched up by his, ex-army nurse, mom. Knowing Tetazoo would be watching any communications going to anyone working on Clockwork, they simply let themselves fall off the radar.
Gabriel had given his mom the keys to his apartment and told her she could stay there while her kitchen was being fixed and then he and Riley grabbed what they thought they would need to be gone for an undetermined amount of time, said their goodbyes, and left. Their only stop was at their bank to empty their accounts. Gabriel also activated the chip and sent a quick message to the phone of Cybercom's future hacker, Troy.
I am not sure if the news has reached you yet, but Cybercom believes that my chip has gone rogue. I was framed, but we cannot find proof and when trying to meet with Lillian away from Tetazoo, I was shot. I got patched up, but Riley is now going to be considered an accomplice and we have decided that it would be best to drop off the radar for a while. We need a way to stay connected, but Tetazoo is having all of Cybercom watched and we cannot afford to contact them. Riley and I would be extremely happy if you could pass this message on to Dr. Cassidy before deleting it. Tetazoo CANNOT find out you are helping us out. After today I am shutting down the chip to keep us off radar, so email me at Robohead . It is a virtually untraceable email account with completely false information. It will say the email is registered to Mr. John Doe and I also have a IPP scrambler on my laptop so the signal cannot be traced. One final thing we will need from you is a message once everything clears up and we are cleared or they simply give up on looking for us. Riley says that when we get back around, she will owe you one.
Your Robotically Chipped Buddy,
Minutes after being sent, a response came back.
I did hear about the shit going down (Via my big bro, you didn't hear that from me). I will keep you posted on things going on around here. I will try to get your message to Cassidy and then I will delete it. Creative email address by the way, little obvious for you though. As for Riley owing me, tell her that I look forward to it.
Your Underaged Hacker,
Have a better message for him. he will get it, but no one else will be able to decode it.
Things are a little rough right now, since I lost my job. I will be staying with a close friend who is always there for me. Decided that a change of scenery would be a good idea so I have taken off in search of a new place. Make sure Lil and Nel knows that Ry and I are still kicking. Will try to write often, but service is now spotty and hard to find hotspots to connect to, and if you need to get a hold of me, my email is Robohead gmail,com
Thanks a bunch.
Your Robotically Chipped Buddy,
I'll pass your message on to Cassidy. Shoot me a line once you two find somewhere you can stay and feel safe. So far, Lillian has not come to me looking for you.
Your Underaged Hacker,
After receiving the reply, Gabriel once again shut the chip down and headed in to find Riley. After checking in and passing on Troy's message, minus the fact that she now owed Troy, and then proceeded to empty his account. Once both accounts were empty, the pair took off and headed for the bus station before abandoning the car in lieu of a different sort of transportation.
Looking at the board of departing bus they realized they had no clue where they wanted to be.
"I say probably a big town or a small city, less people to see us." Riley said going into work mode.
"East or west?" Gabriel asked while trying to narrow down the locations.
"How about towards the middle of the country? East would be too easy to get caught and west would be the first place they would look. They would figure we would want to get as far away as possible."
"Good point. North or south?"
"Tough one. If we go north we will freeze in the winter, but if we go south we will burn over the summer."
"Definitely not going to Texas or Arizona."
"New Mexico is out too. I don't think that New Orleans would be a good idea either. Not a fan of swamps and with Mardi Gras... Too many people with cameras. To easy to find us by searching through photos."
"What about Iowa? Nothing extraordinary, tourist-wise. No huge cities... Only a handful of small ones."
"Iowa sounds good." Riley said with a smile. "Where in Iowa were you thinking?" Riley asked surprised that Gabriel had come up with such a good idea.
"Just not near a corn field. Those children of the corn have been known to be vicious." Gabriel said with a smirk as Riley smacked his arm.
"Butthead." With this, Gabriel pouted at her. After a few minutes Riley spoke up. "Um, Gabriel?"
"The bus headed closest to Iowa is getting ready to leave."
Hope you liked this chapter. Let me know what you think by reviewing and telling me what you think is good and if there is something you don't like.