Title: Challenge What the Future Holds
Word Count: 12,041
Fandom: Warehouse 13
Character(s)/Pairing(s): Most of the main cast/Pyka
Genre: H/C, angst, romance, friendship, whumpage (Pete mostly)
bWarnings: Spoilers for season 4, violence
Summary: Pete Lattimer's life change the moment he met Mrs. Frederic and became a Warehouse agent. Now he's about to face his biggest challenge after putting his friends, the Warehouse, and the Earth in danger to save the woman he loves. Pete will have to face his past if he wants to have a future.
Author's Notes: This was written for the small fandom bang on LJ. I'd like to thank karri_kln1671 and taliahale for the beta as well as mella68 for the beautiful artwork.
Disclaimers: Warehouse 13 and all related characters are property of the SyFy Channel.
Pete stood very far from the others as they discussed the options. His heart raced in his chest knowing that all of this was his fault despite what Claudia said. It didn't matter how much he had wanted to cure Myka, he let loose pure evil and almost killed everyone in the process. She would be so disappointed in him.
"Pete!" He took a deep breath, ignoring the pain from his cracked ribs, and turned to face Artie. The older man was about to say something but paused, looking at him. The look was gone pretty fast. "What did Paracelsus say before, you know…?"
"I don't…" Pete trailed off. He needed to tell them what happened. He was always for the truth and it upset him when people weren't straight forward. "It's my fault, Artie," he finally said.
As usual, Mrs. Fredric seemed to know already. "It's okay, Peter," she said, encouraging him with a nod.
Pete wasn't so sure he deserved her understanding or the calm she was radiating. She must have realized what happened before Paracelsus became the Caretaker again. "I tried to… to turn him mortal."
"You did what?" Artie asked, dumfounded.
"I tried to turn him mortal. He said he could save her. I had to save her, Artie. I had to!"
Artie shook his head. "You're not making much sense. Who do you have to save?"
Pete closed his eyes. He couldn't tell them about Myka because she didn't want anyone else to know. It wasn't his place no matter how much he wanted to explain why he would ever try something so amazingly stupid.
"Myka." He opened his eyes when Steve spoke up. "You were doing it to save Myka. I could tell something was wrong and she was lying every time I asked if she was all right. She's been way too quiet."
"Yeah. At the time I wasn't thinking of anything but helping her get better but now I know I was just being selfish. Paracelsus has the Warehouse, he has Claudia, and it's my fault!"
Artie who spoke up again. "We don't blame you for any of this, Pete. Paracelsus used your fear and love for Myka against you. We're going to stop him, I promise you that! And Myka, she's strong and you know that better than any of us."
Pete nodded. He still wasn't exactly convinced but he was going to focus on setting it right. He needed to or none of them would survive. "What can we do from out here, Artie?"
"We need to talk to the Regents. Let's go."
Before any of them could move a loud explosion reverberated from the Warehouse. Pete's eyes widened as he watched part of the roof slam into the protective barrier. He sent a silent prayer up for Claudia. He knew that if something happened to her he would never be able to forgive himself.
"Pete, I need you to find Myka and tell her what's going on."
"She can't help right now, Artie. She had… She's with the doctor."
"We can send Abigail," Mrs. Frederic said.
The ride to the B&B was quiet. They were able to gather some of the equipment from the hidden underground cavern that Artie never told them about to see if anything could possibly help them. The Regents would be meeting with them shortly to go over the strategy.
Pete wanted no part of leaving the Warehouse with Claudia still in there but Artie insisted he go with them to explain to the Regents exactly what happened. Steve and Mrs. Fredric would remain there for the time being.
By the time they pulled into the driveway the Regents had already arrived. Pete dreaded what the consequences were for his actions but he knew he deserved whatever they deemed fit for a punishment especially if it leads to Paracelsus taking over the world.
Pete slowly got out of the car wincing at the pain the movement caused in his ribs. He didn't even notice Artie was on the passenger side already. "You're hurt. Why didn't you say anything?"
"Leave it, Artie, I'm fine. Just bruised is all. Let's just get this over with. If anything the other Regents will be more lenient than my mom."
Artie shook his head with a chuckle. "That's not fair to your mom. And you're not giving the Regents enough credit. Just tell them what happened and everything will work out."
Pete wasn't so sure but nodded and followed him inside. He saw Kosan and few other familiar faces. Finally his mom appeared and went to give him a hug. She frowned at Pete's sharp intake of breath. "What happened, are you okay?"
"I'm fine, mom, just a little sore," he told her.
He could tell he didn't believe her but she let it go. Kosan spoke up. "Agent Lattimer, I believe you have something to tell us."
Pete glanced over at Artie who nodded. He then began to tell them what he spoke to Paracelsus about. It was hard to gauge their expressions, even his mom's, as he spoke. Once he was finished he was summarily dismissed.
Ten minutes later Pete was standing alone on the patio when he heard footsteps behind him. He knew that gait all too well but he didn't turn to face her. He couldn't. Right now all he could think about was the fact that Claudia could die because of what he tried to do.
It wouldn't matter if he had saved Myka, not if the world was destroyed in the process. He had been so selfish because if his fear of losing people close to him. He could see the disappointment in Artie's eyes. It may have been brief but it was there.
"Peter, sweetheart, look at me."
Pete didn't answer or move. He wouldn't until a solution to this mess was discovered. And no matter what anyone said, he was going to be the one to handle it if, God forbid, Claudia didn't make it.
His mom, of course, wasn't going to be deterred. "I know very well how much like your father you are and I know how much you love Myka, but this is completely unlike you. I have never known you to risk so many lives for one person."
Pete shook his head. "You sound like a Vulcan."
"Peter Joseph Lattimer, this is hardly a joking matter."
"I'm sorry, mom," he said finally looking her in the eyes. "I wasn't thinking with my head."
She smiled, placing a hand on his cheek. "You were thinking with your heart."
Pete moved away angrily. "And look where that got us! Paracelsus has control of the Warehouse and Claudia is in there right now fighting him alone! I knew after Kelly I shouldn't have… but I realized that Myka was the person I wanted to be with forever. If not as my wife then as a friend who would always be there!"
Jane was about to reply when Artie came over. "I think we may have a way to stop Paracelsus."
She was running through the Warehouse but she couldn't find Pete anywhere. Myka knew he was in there and she knew he was in trouble. She could hear explosions and shouting but he was nowhere to be found. It was like the Warehouse was purposely keeping her from finding him.
There was another loud explosion and a cry of pain. "Pete!" Myka turned the corner and saw Paracelsus standing over Pete's broken body. With a grin he disappeared. "Pete," exclaimed again, rushing to his side.
He looked up at her through half-lidded eyes. "Mykes… I'm sorry…"
"For what, Pete?"
"Everything. For not… not telling you… that I…" he took a shuddering breath, his eyes slipping shut.
"Telling me what?"
"I love you."
With that Pete breathed his last breath. Tears sprang to her eyes. "No, Pete! No! Don't leave me! I love you too, Pete, I do! PETE!"
Her eyes snapped open and suddenly she was in a hospital bed. Blinking, Myka noticed that Abigail was holding her down. She must have been dreaming. She took a deep breath and nodded to the woman before lying back down with a wince.
"That must have been some dream," Abigail said with a frown.
Abigail hesitated before answering. "At the Warehouse."
Myka immediately knew something was wrong. Abigail wouldn't have hesitated if it was something as simple as that. She also knew that Pete would have been there if he could have despite the fact that she told him not to come.
The nurse came in just before Abigail could say anything. She smiled and said she was going to take Myka's vitals. There wasn't much she could do but just let her take care of it. "Are you in any pain?"
"When can I get out of here?" Myka asked.
"That will be up to your doctor, he'll be in shortly, but typically you'll be here two to four days."
Myka glanced up at Abigail who was standing in the corner watching the exchange. "I'm ready to leave now."
"Myka, that is out of the question," her doctor replied when he entered the room. "Your body needs time to heal. We're going to do an ultrasound to make sure we got everything and we'll go from there, okay?"
She frowned. "Okay."
"I know that you're not one to be laid up," he said, "but we just need to make sure that everything is okay and watch out for infection. Hopefully we won't need to worry about that but it's best for you to be here so we can keep an eye on you."
"I understand," Myka replied.
"Good. I'll send a tech up soon to bring you down for that scan. Just let the nurse know what you'd like for dinner and she'll have that here when you get back."
She nodded and once he was gone, Myka looked over at Abigail again. "Now what's going on?"
"I don't know all the details as they sent me here as soon as they could. Somehow Paracelsus was released and he is now the Caretaker. Mrs. Fredric transferred her remaining power to Claudia and she's in there trying to fight him. And Pete… from what I could tell, he released Paracelsus."
Myka starred at her in shock. "What the hell are you saying? Pete would never do something like that!"
"It's not his fault, we know that. Paracelsus knew how vulnerable Pete was and he used your illness to get what he wanted." Abigail allowed what she said to sink in. As she waited her Farnsworth went off. "Artie."
"She's awake and right here," Abigail replied handing the small box to the agent.
She smiled. "Hey, Artie!"
"Are you feeling okay?"
"I'll be fine. Just waiting to get a final scan. Now what's going on over there? Abigail mentioned something about Claudia fighting Paracelsus. Alone! What the hell, Artie!"
Artie sighed. "It wasn't as if we had much of a choice. Trust me if there had been another way..."
"So why is Claudia fighting Paracelsus and what are you all doing to help her?"
She didn't want to sound rude but this was a serious problem. Whatever Pete tried to do completely backfired and it cost them the Warehouse. "Vanessa thinks she can come up with a way to neutralize the chemicals Paracelsus used that keeps him from being bronzed. She's working on it right now," Artie explained. "The rest of us are trying to figure out how to get in unnoticed to shoot him with a tranquilizer dart."
Myka didn't know whether to laugh or cry at the plan. She would reserve judgment though until the doctor's serum was completed. "Where's Pete?"
Artie glanced behind him. "Sitting on the couch looking miserable. He nearly fainted earlier from one of his vibes. It must have been pretty bad but he won't talk about it."
"Maybe I can get him to talk."
Just then an orderly knocked on the door. "Ms. Bering, it's time for your scan!"
"I will call back!" She promised.
He smiled. "I know."
Pete's heart was still racing as he sat back on the couch. That was the most vivid vibe he ever had. He knew that Doctor's serum was going to work and he knew he was going to die giving it to Paracelsus but he didn't care. Not as long as everyone was safe.
Pete also knew Myka didn't return his feelings. He knew that he had always been a screw up. They may have thought he was a good agent but he also had a pretty good track record with being effected by them. He sat up and shakily got to his feet to see what he could help come up with if anything.
"What about Houdini's cloak?" Steve asked. "I remember Claud said it was in a museum somewhere."
"Yeah," Pete replied suddenly joining the conversation. "That will work won't it?"
"It should," Artie said.
"I sense a 'but' coming here."
He nodded at Steve. "While the cloak will hide a person no one was ever able to figure out the side effects from wearing it."
"It doesn't matter," Pete said. "I'm going to do it whatever the side effects are."
"You, Agent Lattimer?" Kosan asked.
Pete nodded. "Yeah, me! You can fire me, bronze me, whatever after Paracelsus has been dealt with but I'm going in!"
"I think we're all getting ahead of ourselves," His mom said. Pete could hear the worry in her voice. "We still need to get the cloak."
Artie nodded. "We do. Pete, Steve, you'll both go to Martinka's and Company in New York where it's on display."
"Are we replacing it or just taking it?" Steve asked.
"I doubt we'll even have enough time to find an exact copy but we might have something in the attic that could work."
His Farnsworth went off and wordlessly he handed it to Pete asking everyone else to go with him to search for it. Pete took a breath and answered, pasting on a huge grin. "Hey hey hey, Mykes! Looking good!"
He didn't like how pale and drawn she looked and she seemed upset. He had to sit down as fear gripped him. It wasn't a vibe but it took a hold of him anyway. It was the fear of losing her. "Pete, did you hear me?"
He blinked, not realizing she'd been talking to him. "I'm sorry, what did you say?"
"What did you do? Abigail wasn't sure but she thought you might have released Paracelsus."
Pete knew this was going to be the last conversation they ever had. Not because she would hate him but because he was going to die soon. "Myka, I... He caught me at an especially bad time and I caved. He said... He told me he could save you. It was stupid and I don't know what else to say but I'm sorry and I love you so much that I would die if I lost you."
"Pete..." He sighed he knew she was done with him. "I love you too."
Okay he wasn't expecting that! "Myka?"
She laughed. "Looking back I probably have since our first case but I didn't realize it until I was pregnant. The thought of you being the father of my child, of growing old with you. It made me happier than I felt in a long time."
"Me too, Mykes, me too."
"Good," she replied. "Now what's with the intense vibe Artie said you had."
"I wouldn't say it was intense."
"Yet he mentioned something about you nearly fainting."
"I didn't faint," Pete insisted. "Everything is fine. I've just been worried about Claudia. It's my fault she's in there."
Pete was pretty sure Myka didn't believe his answer for a second but that's when Artie and the others returned. "We found it!" Steve exclaimed.
"Found what?" Myka asked from the Farnsworth.
"Something to replace the cloak Houdini used to wear," Pete told her. "It makes the wearer disappear."
Myka shook her head. "What are the side effects, Artie?"
"We don't really know at this point. There was a vague account that a fellow magician spoke of but it's hard to find exact details without the Warehouse computer. For now Pete and Steve are going to New York and you are going to get some rest."
"Artie I can at least help with the research."
"Rest first, Myka!" Pete said. "I'm sure they'll call when they need your help."
Myka smiled. "Right. You guys be careful out there!"
"We will. Kirk out!"
Pete was happy that something went right in this mess. They had been able to get the cloak with ease. They tested it briefly on some boxes just to be certain but it worked. As they drove back to the B&B he could feel that Steve wanted to say something.
"Just spill it," he said to his friend.
"Your vibe, it was about you wasn't it?"
He nodded. "Yeah."
Steve shook his head. "There's more to it than that, isn't there? I mean I can tell you're not being completely honest."
"Maybe I'm not."
"You saw your death."
Pete looked over at Steve and that looked confirmed it for the younger man. "Why didn't you say anything? We can prevent that, have someone else go in."
"No? That's it? Just no."
Pete nodded. "That's what I said. I'm going in. This is my mess and I have to fix it!"
"You don't have to do this alone, Pete."
He nodded. "I know but no one else can do what I need to do and no one can know what my vibe meant. Not my mom and especially not Myka!"
"Whoa! Wait a minute there! After what Myka went through and what you were willing to do for her, she has a right to know."
Pete was thoughtful before replying. "I know. I need to do this in person though."
"Then you will."
Myka sat there as the doctor's words sunk in. While they were able to get most of the tumor he still wanted to do some radiation to take care of what was left. She almost said no but then thought of Pete. What if there was a way for them to stay together forever? She couldn't be selfish about it.
There was a knock on the door a few minutes after the doctor had gone. "Come in," she said. Myka clearly did not expect him. "Pete! What are you...? Shouldn't you be dealing with Paracelsus right now?"
"There was something I needed to do first."
Before Myka could ask what Pete rushed over and kissed her. She felt everything in that kiss. His love for her, his fears, his passion. It was the most amazing kiss she had ever experienced. And suddenly she knew what his vibe was about.
The moment he pulled away she grabbed his hands. "Don't leave me, Pete, please!"
"Myka, I can't do anything about what's going to happen. And I can't expect anyone to go in my place. Not just because I caused this but knowing they could die in my place? No. I can't be selfish anymore. Not when the fate of the whole world is on my shoulders."
Tears pooled in her eyes. This was the man she fell in love with. "I love you, Pete. So much!"
"I love you too, Myka!" He gave her another kiss and left her alone as she began to cry. That's how Abigail found her.
"We're back!" Pete said.
"Took you long enough," Artie said.
Mrs. Fredric seemed to know, as usual. "How is Myka?"
"She's feeling better and will be released tomorrow," Steve replied.
Jane smiled glancing at Pete. "That's good to hear."
"What's the plan then?" Pete asked. "I go in with the cloak and tranq gun, right?"
Everyone knew it was pointless to argue with him about it so instead Artie spoke up. "Vanessa should be here soon with the serum. Pete, I have the map to the underground tunnel over here."
Pete followed Artie to the other room where it was just to the two of them. "Artie, I just want you to know that I understand if you need to fire me after all this is over. I mean, I would prefer that to just being bronzed or something."
"What? Pete, the only one getting bronzed today is Paracelsus. Now lets concentrate on that, okay?"
He nodded and listened as Artie told him about the tunnels. He was explaining the last ten feet to the entrance when another vibe hit him. "Oh crap, Artie. I gotta go now."
"What? What is it?"
"Claudia. She's in trouble and I have to go. Where's the Doc?"
"Right here," she said rushing in with a case. She opened it to reveal ready to go tranquilizers for his weapon.
Pete grabbed all six sliding them into his bulletproof vest. There was no telling if it would protect him but there were enough pockets for all the ammo. Steve tossed him the cloak. "Okay, I'm going in," he told them.
"Good luck," Steve said.
Artie nodded. "Be safe."
His mom went over to him, giving him a hug. "I just want you to know that I am very proud of you, Pete. Come back to me and Myka, okay?"
Pete gave her a hug. "I will, Mom," he replied. "I love you."
"I love you too."
Claudia was getting tired. She'd spent the last however many hours keeping Paracelsus at bay. Well that's what it felt like anyway. She had accidently knocked over an artifact that seemed to slow down time or something and she could have sworn it had only been ten minutes since she was left alone in the Warehouse.
He still didn't seem to have full control just yet. While he was pretty powerful she seemed to be able to deter him. Claudia knew she couldn't keep it up for long. Her head ached something awful and she had sprained her knee slipping on neutralizer she herself had sprayed on the time slower earlier.
She heard a noise to her right, and as it would seem, Paracelsus was ready for another round of fun. "Seriously? Dude, you're so passed your expiration date, how about we just shelve you again and be done with it."
"You are such a simple minded child, Ms. Donovan. Don't you know that the world needs someone like me in charge of a place like this? Someone who would share the wonderful artifacts with them."
Claudia laughed sarcastically. "Right! Because everyone wants to have their illness cured only to die mysteriously an hour later using said artifact."
Paracelsus ignored her comment and began ranting about something or other from the past. She stared past him because she swore she saw something knock into a crate. Could that be help from the outside? If so, how come the old crazy man didn't notice it? Whatever, or whoever it was, Claudia needed to distract their new Caretaker.
She wasn't sure if she could convince Paracelsus she was on his side, but Claudia decided to give it a try. "Okay, okay, I get it. I really do. So what would I get if I helped you defeat these Warehouse Agents and Regents?"
"After all this you would betray your friends?"
Claudia shrugged. "Isn't that what Pete almost did here? He released you didn't he?"
"Well," Paracelsus said. "We both know that he isn't a very smart man. Why the Regents ever chose him was beyond me."
She wanted to kill him for thinking of Pete like that but she didn't show her anger because he seemed to be believing her. Claudia snorted. "Tell me about it! The first time I was working a case with him I thought he was a complete idiot! All he does is make jokes and doesn't seem to take anything seriously. I think he's in love with Myka but he's too dumb to realize that she is way out of his league."
Sorry, Pete, she thought to herself.
"Yes, it seems that little Peter has a crush on Myka. I used that to my advantage. It was worth it just to see the expression on his face when I gained control of the Warehouse. He actually believed me when I said I could cure her, even after what I had done to all those others with cancer."
Before Claudia could respond Paracelsus turned around and with a wave of his hand something flew up in the air and Pete was standing there in a bulletproof vest and holding a tranquilizer gun. She had to say that he looked pretty bad ass. And it made her sick that he heard everything she said about him even if it was far from the truth.
Pete fired two darts at Paracelsus but he just batted them away with this hand and used some kind of force to propel him into a brick wall about ten feet down the aisle. She winced in sympathy as he hit the wall pretty hard. She didn't think he was going to get up but he did a few seconds later. Pete was swaying but he managed to stand and aim at Paracelsus again, who had turned his attention back to her.
The third dart hit the intended target, dropping the ancient man to his knees. It was taking too long for Claudia's liking for him to pass out so she grabbed the closest weapon, which happened to be Babe Ruth's baseball bat, and swung hard.
Paracelsus dropped like a sack of potatoes. Suddenly Pete was at her side. "Nice swing, Claud," he said. "I told you we need a Warehouse 13 baseball team. Us against the Regents."
Claudia laughed and glanced up at him. He looked pale, almost gray, and ready to pass out. Blood matted the back of his hair. "Pete, maybe you should sit down a minute."
"No, we need to get him into the bronzing chamber. Dr. Calder came up with something to… Damn."
He took several deep breaths before he replied. "I'm good. She made something that would neutralize whatever he took to stop the process. We need to get him contained first then we rest."
Claudia didn't like the idea of him moving around in his condition, but Pete was right. They had to make sure he was bronzed before she lowered the barrier. It took them a good ten minutes to get Paracelsus' unconscious form to the bronzing room. Luckily their last stand occurred only two rows down from it.
Pete just finished securing him into the chamber when Claudia cursed. "What is it?" he asked.
"Artie's DNA sample."
He reached into his pocket and tossed her a vial. "Here ya go!"
Claudia caught it gratefully and hit "begin process" with a flourish. The two waited with baited breath as the bronzing started. The minute it took effect, she exclaimed, "We did it!"
"Yeah," Pete replied.
She turned to face him when his usual gusto wasn't apparent in his voice. "Pete?" she said, rushing to his side as he dropped to his knees. Claudia carefully helped him to the floor. "You okay there?"
"Probably have a concussion, maybe some broken ribs," he told her. "Nothing I can't handle."
Claudia smiled. "Right."
"You need to make sure the shield is lowered, Claud."
"It already is because the threat has been eliminated."
Pete nodded, wincing as he did so. "Good, that's what I like to hear. Claud, I'm sorry about all this. Tell Myka I'm sorry for everything, okay?"
"Don't talk like that, Pete, you're going to be fine and you can tell Myka yourself. Although I have to admit I don't know what you're apologizing for. I'm the one who needs to after what I said to Paracelsus about you."
"No, Claud. I know what you were trying to do. You must have realized I was in here like he did," Pete told her. He closed his eyes. "I'm not gonna last much longer here. You need to promise me you'll take care of Myka. Keep her safe for me."
She shook her head, tears falling. "Pete you can't leave us. We need you, please!"
Pete smiled at her. "You guys are safe and you have each other and that's important to me okay? I love all of you."
With that, Pete's eyes slipped shut. Claudia shook her head. "No! Please, Pete!" she cried, checking for a pulse. She couldn't find one.
"Pete!" Claudia looked up to see Jane Lattimer rushing towards her son. She looked expectantly at Claudia, who shook her head. "Oh God, no," she whispered.
Artie, Steve, and Vanessa stood in the doorway in stunned silence. Finally Vanessa went over to them and checked him over herself. "Jane, Claudia, he's not dead."
"What?" they asked.
Artie stepped forward. "Claudia, what happened?"
She wiped away the tears that had fallen then looked up at Steve who had placed a hand on her shoulder. "Paracelsus knew Pete was here and flung the cloak off him. Pete fired the tranq gun twice but missed. Paracelsus used an artifact, I couldn't tell which, to fling him down the aisle into a brick wall."
Artie frowned. "Brick wall? Brick wall… Crap. That brick wall was part of the office of Dr. Bryce Hamilton. He wasn't very well-known but he was very successful in helping people come to terms with grief, loss, betrayal, and guilt. My guess is that Paracelsus knew exactly what he was doing when he tossed Pete into that wall."
Jane frowned, looking up at Artie. Claudia could tell she wasn't familiar with this doctor Artie was talking about. "What are you saying?"
"Dr. Hamilton was a psychiatrist and that brick wall was part of his office. In fact, the couch that a patient would lay on was against that wall," Artie explained.
Steve nodded in understanding. "So when Pete hit the wall it caused… what exactly?"
"Pete is in a coma," Vanessa told them. "Until he can resolve his feelings about what happened he will stay that way."
Pete woke up in his bed at the B&B. He was very confused because he swore he was dying in the bronzing room at the Warehouse with Claudia sitting beside him. How he was in his bed and still alive was beyond him.
He sat up and realized his head injury and broken ribs were healed as well. Looking around Pete saw that everything seemed to be where it should be. Well, everything except for him. Grabbing the t-shirt at the end of the bed he put it on and went out into the hall.
There was no sign of any of the others upstairs but he did smell fresh cookies baking. Whatever was going on his stomach and nose led him down to the kitchen. Again no one was in the living room, dining room, or the patio.
It was the person he found in the kitchen that wasn't supposed to be there. A lump formed in Pete's throat when he saw her. He was speechless and that was saying something for this Warehouse agent. Finally he took a deep breath and said, "Leena."
She turned, smiling. "There you are, Pete! I was wondering when you were going to wake up! The cookies should be ready in few minutes. Pour yourself a glass of milk."
"What's wrong, Pete?" she asked, the smile fading. "Are you feeling okay?"
He shook his head. "I don't know. I'm confused. Did I hit my head or something? Where is everyone?"
"What do you mean? They're at the Warehouse doing inventory. Artie said you had a rough time with the most recent artifact so he wanted you to recuperate. Did you hit your head while you were on the case? That might explain some of your confusion."
Pete didn't know what to think. How could he be talking to Leena when she's been dead for almost six months now? "I don't know who you think you are, but you are not Leena!"
She laughed. "Pete, of course I am. Now sit down," she replied, setting the plate of cookies in front of him.
"No thanks. The last time I ate cookies given to me by someone I didn't know, I ended up with two broken legs and crap ton of guilt!"
"You're not making much sense," Leena said.
Pete gestured wildly. "I'm not? The last thing I remember was that I died... Oh God I'm dead. That explains why you're here. Unless you're my subconscious."
"Um no, I'm not. Did you touch anything you shouldn't have recently?"
Pete thought back. "Well Houdini's cloak and Paracelsus tossed me into a wall."
"A wall? As in Dr. Bryce Hamilton's wall?"
Pete starred at her in confusion. "Who?"
"He was a psychiatrist who helped a lot of people come to terms with betrayal and guilt. Supposedly if you touch the wall you slip into a coma until you resolve your issues or you..." Leena trailed off.
"Or I what?"
CONTINUE ON TO PART 2…