The Devil's Obsession
Author's Note: I do not own Without a Trace or any of its characters. I only own the characters that I've created myself. So, please do not attempt to sue me as this story is for entertainment purposes only.
Summary: Danny is in love with Nurse Vicky Rodriguez, his girlfriend of two years, and he's planning to propose to her on Valentine's Day. But all is not well with Vicky since she's been receiving flowers and other gifts from a secret admirer that started off innocent enough yet have turned stranger and darker. What happens when her secret admirer kidnaps Vicky and reveals his true identity as an old enemy from Danny's past that is out for revenge? Will Danny be able to rescue the love of his life or will he have to bury her and live with the reality that even with all of his connections in the FBI, he couldn't do anything to save Vicky?
Chapter One:The Heart's Desire
Monday morning, 9:00 AM
Danny sat in the bullpen working on the final reports for several recently closed cases. He did his best to concentrate on his work but it was hopeless. His mind was somewhere else. His mind was on the lovely Vicky Rodriguez, a registered nurse at St. Luke's Hospital and his girlfriend of two years. Vicky was the love of his life. She was compassionate, funny, loving and she was always there for him when Danny needed a shoulder to cry on or ears to listen when things weren't going right for him. Vicky was always there for him, never judging him wrongly, even when he wasn't at his best.
Danny loved her and knew that he couldn't let Vicky go. So, he'd made the decision six months ago that he was going to choose the most romantic day of the year and propose to Vicky on Valentine's Day. Now, he sat at his desk and for the umpteenth time that day, he removed the small velvet box from his suit breast pocket and opened it. Five days. In five days, he would ask Vicky, the love of his life, to spend the rest of their lives together as husband and wife in holy matrimony.
Martin stood at the coffee desk pouring steaming hot coffee into his and Danny's mugs and couldn't stop himself from smiling in amusement at his best friend's demeanor. He'd been observing Danny all morning and now chuckled amused as he made his way to Danny's desk. His best friend was going to propose to his girlfriend Vicky five days from now. He'd been making fun of Danny, telling him that she had him whipped.
The fact was, however, that he really liked Vicky. The entire team liked Vicky, especially him. Vicky was the nurse who'd taken care of him and Danny after they were rescued from the grasps of Bobby Carr and his men, when they'd tortured them in the woods, three years ago. She nursed them back to health when they were still hospitalized together. Then, when Martin was released, Danny had all of Vicky's attention for himself because he didn't have to compete with Martin's rugged good looks anymore.
Danny had fallen for Vicky while he was in the hospital but she refused to take him seriously. That is, until Vivian, Jack and Jeff had made a bet that she wouldn't go out with him. The guys had lost that bet when she wheeled Danny to the car and gave him her card. Since he wasn't her patient anymore, she wouldn't be breaking any rules. They went out
that very same week and from that day on, Vicky and Danny had become inseparable. On her days off, she'd come to the office and would take Danny to lunch. Other times, she'd spend time outside of work with Danny and the rest of the team.
She was a great, down to earth, gal with a big heart who made Danny happy and that's what was important to him and everyone else who knew and cared for Danny. Danny had suffered a lot throughout his life and deserved to be happy. He'd found that happiness with Vicky and Martin was going to do everything humanly possible to make sure that everything turned out perfect, without a hitch.
Martin picked up the steaming mugs of hot coffee and walked to his partner's desk, chuckling amused when he saw that Danny was still a nervous wreck.
"Calm down and breathe, brother. What? Did you change your mind about proposing to Vicky? Everything is ready for Saturday evening, okay; the music, the flowers, the private reservation, the ring." Martin said with a bright smile as he handed Danny a hot mug of coffee and they both took a sip from their mugs.
"I just want everything to be perfect. I love Vicky and I want to spend the rest of my life making her as happy as she's made me. I don't want anything to go wrong." Danny said with a heavy sigh as he looked at the brilliantly gleaming diamond engagement ring staring back at him from its place in the velvet box.
"Everything is going to be perfect and she's going to say yes. When she does, you're going to go get married and I'm going to be your best man, of course. Then, when you get married and have all of those babies running around, Uncle Marty and all of their aunts and uncles will be there to spoil them." Martin said with an amused smile and Danny couldn't help but laugh at Martin's words.
Saint Luke's Hospital, 1:00 PM…
Vicky Rodriguez's Job…
"Hey, Vicky, honey. That boyfriend of yours must really love you. You just got another delivery. There are flowers and balloons this time and there's also a gift box." Denise Harrison, Vicky's boss, said kindly as she pointed to the large flower arrangement and gift-wrapped box with a big red bow.
Instead of being happy or excited, Vicky was worried. She knew that the flowers weren't from Danny. Over the last two months, she'd been receiving anonymous gifts, weekly. In the beginning, they were innocent, just flowers, candy and teddy bears. She wanted to thank Danny for the beautiful gesture but when she spoke to Danny and he assured her that he hadn't sent the gifts, she let it go, figuring that the gifts would stop. But they hadn't. In fact, they were getting stranger and more disturbing. The previous week, she'd received flowers and men's underwear. So, she didn't want to open the gift because she was afraid of what she would find inside. Vicky opened the box and inside was beautiful lingerie and a card.
Vicky read the card and gasped fearfully. "Soon, my love. Soon," Vicky read and gasped fearfully as she dropped the box on the floor in horror.
"Sweetheart, are you okay? What's wrong?" Denise asked concerned as she took a hold of Vicky before she could fall.
"Danny didn't send me that. Somebody's been stalking me every week for the last two months. At first, I thought it was just Danny sending me the flowers but when I talked to him, he swore that he didn't send anything. First it seemed innocent, but then last week I started receiving disturbing things like men's underwear and now this." Vicky cried upset and her coworkers looked at her concerned.
"Is there anything that we can do for you, honey? Whatever you need, we're here." Denise, Vicky's boss and friend said kindly but concerned.
"I need to call Danny." Vicky cried upset as she retrieved her cell phone from her pocket and attempted to dial Danny's number with violently shaking hands but couldn't.
"Calm down and breathe, honey. You're safe here. We're not going to let anything happen to you." Denise said compassionately as she grabbed Vicky's phone and dialed Danny's number.
"Good afternoon, sweet lips. What can I do for you?" Danny said with a smile and Special Agent Jeff Carmichael and Martin mocked him.
"Danny, it's Denise. We need to talk." Denise said concerned.
"What happened to Vicky? Why do you have her phone?" Danny asked seriously concerned and Martin and Jeff immediately grew concerned as they stopped mocking him and listened intently to Danny and the conversation he was having.
"She's here but she's too upset to talk. We're trying to calm her down." Denise said concerned.
"What happened? Why is she upset?" Danny said calmly but fearfully.
"She just got a floral arrangement here at the hospital. We thought it was you who'd sent it but she said that someone has been sending her strange gifts for the last two months." Denise said concerned. "Hold on. She wants to talk to you." She said kindly and then gave Vicky her phone.
"Vicky, talk to me, honey. What's going on? What happened?" Danny said caringly but very concerned.
"I just got another delivery, Danny. They sent flowers, balloons, lingerie and a card. The card reads 'Soon, my love. Soon.'. Danny, I'm so scared. What is going on? Who's doing all of this? Why are they coming after me?" Vicky cried fearfully as she shook and her coworkers tried to comfort her.
"Shhh. Don't be scared, baby. I'm going to go to the hospital right now. Don't touch anything and don't move from there. Do you understand, beautiful? I'm going to talk to Jack right now and we're going to find out who this sick freak is. Just stay right there with Denise and the others for now. I'll be there soon, beautiful. I love you." Danny said lovingly and then ended the call.
"What's wrong with Vicky, Danny?" Martin asked concerned.
"What can we do to help?" Jeff asked concerned.
"She got another package from a damn stalker. At first, it was harmless stuff like flowers and a teddy bear. But now the sick freak sent her lingerie and a card reading 'Soon, my love. Soon.'. Then, last week, they sent her flowers and men's underwear to the house. I'm going to find out of who the hell is doing this. She's scared to death right now. I don't want her to leave the hospital without me." Danny said somewhat angrily as he grabbed his gun, walked to Jack's office and knocked on his door.
"Come in." Jack said kindly as he sat writing at his desk and Danny, Martin and Jeff entered the office. "What can I do for you?" Jack said with an amused smile, he was in a strangely good mood.
"Jack, I need to get to the hospital. Vicky's boss just called me…," Danny said concerned and when on to tell Jack everything that had been going on the last two months.
"Why didn't you say anything to us before, Danny? You know how serious or deadly a stalking case can become. Have you tried to find out who the sender is?" Jack said somewhat sternly.
"I already tried that but all they is that it's a white male, wears a baseball cap and very dark shades. Other than that, they don't have enough for a sketch and he pays cash every time." Danny said frustrated and his phone rang. "Hello?" He said somewhat angrily and then heard music on his phone, followed by low evil laughter that made the hairs on his hair stand on end, right before the call ended.
"Was it Vicky?" Jack asked seriously but Danny shook his head as he began feeling sick to his stomach.
"Nobody spoke. They just laughed low and played music in the background." Danny said shaken. He had the sense that he'd heard that eerie music before but he couldn't remember where or when he'd heard it.
"We better get to the hospital right now. Jeff, I want you and Martin to see what you can find out from the delivery service. See if they have any videos of him and canvas the surrounding area to see if anyone knows who this guy is or if they've seen him with someone else. Let's go." Jack said seriously as Danny gave Jeff a paper with the delivery service's number and address and they went their separate ways, arriving at the hospital twenty minutes later.
Saint Luke's Hospital, 1:30 PM…
7th Floor Nurses Station…
Danny and Jack made their way up tothe 7th Floor where Vicky worked. Danny was anxious ever since he'd received that eerie phone call. Where had he heard that haunting melody before? He tried to stop thinking about it for the moment. Right now, all that mattered was making sure that Vicky was safe and that they caught the disturbed person who was doing all of this.
Danny and Jack walked up to the nurses' desk but Danny instantly became somewhat fearful when he saw Vicky's boss but didn't see any sign of Vicky anywhere. Where was she? He'd warned her that under no circumstances should she leave the safety of the nurses' station.
"Where's Vicky?" Danny asked somewhat gruffly out of fear.
"Calm down, sweetie. Several doctors that work with us took her into a private room so that she could calm down. If you'll follow me, I'll take you to her right now." Denise said kindly.
"Where are the flowers and gifts that she got? Did anybody touch them?" Jack said gruffly.
"No one has touched anything since Vicky last spoke with Danny. It's still here. See?" Denise said respectfully as she pointed to the nurses' desk where the gifts were.
"All right. I don't want anyone touching any of this. We have to get this analyzed." Jack said seriously as he dialed a number and called an evidence tech to pick up the items.
"Take us to her. Now," Jack said seriously and Denise led them to a private family room where Vicky now sat with several doctors.
As soon as Vicky saw Danny, she cried very emotionally and fearfully as she flung herself into his open arms. Danny embraced her tightly and sighed heavily. He couldn't bear to see her suffering like this and some twisted animal was taking immense pleasure in terrorizing her.
"Shhh. I'm not going to let anything happen to you. We're going to find out who's calling me and sending you all this garbage." Danny said seriously but lovingly.
"Wait. What do you mean someone called you, Danny?" Vicky cried fearfully and Danny held her tighter.
"Don't worry about that, honey. I already have evidence techs running a trace on Danny's phone. They're going to try to find out where the calls are coming from and they're also going to pick up what was sent here. Right now, though, I need to know if someone's called your phone and when." Jack said compassionately as he held Vicky's hands in his own.
"Someone keeps calling my phone but the only thing on the other end is some weird music but no one answers." Vicky sniffled crying as she shook and Danny held her tighter.
"I know that you're afraid, honey, but you need to calm down." Dr. Aaron Casey said kindly as he checked Vicky's vitals.
"Who are you?" Danny said somewhat angrily as he held Vicky protectively.
"Don't speak to him like that, Danny. These are Dr. Aaron Casey, Dr. Michael Cox and Dr. Adam Wes. They work here. Dr. Casey's a Psychiatrist." Vicky cried softly and Dr. Wes fed her a cup of ice cold water, allowing her to calm down several minutes later.
"Vicky, Danny just told us now what's been going on with this stalker. Why didn't you two say anything when this first began? What happened to the other things that were sent to you?" Jack said a bit sternly but kindly.
"When I realized that Danny hadn't sent the first flowers or teddy bears, I got creeped out and threw them in the garbage. But the gifts keep coming every week. Last week someone sent me men's underwear and now this. Why is someone doing this?" Vicky asked upset and Danny held her tighter.
"I don't know, honey, but we're trying to figure it out. For now, you're coming back to the office with us. So, get your things." Jack said caringly as he held her hand.
"All of my belongings are in my locker inside of the nurses' locker room." Vicky explained tiredly as she raked a shaky hand through her hair.
"Come on. We're not going to leave you alone." Danny said with conviction as he possessively put his arm around Vicky's waist and they walked toward the locker room.
"I'm sorry but you're going to have to stay out here. Only medical personnel are allowed in the locker room." Dr. Casey said seriously and Danny looked at him angrily.
"There's a sick psychopath after her, in case haven't noticed. If you think that I'm going to leave her alone, you're out…" Danny said calmly but viciously as he glared at the doctor but Jack and Vicky cut him off.
"Danny," Jack and Vicky chastised sternly.
"Danny, honey, you need to calm down. I know that you're afraid but you can't talk to Dr. Casey like that, okay. He's not the one causing all of this. Now, please calm down and cool off. Dr. Casey's right. Only medical personnel are allowed inside the locker room. I don't want to lose my job so please stay out here. I'll be okay going inside the locker room alone. I promise." Vicky said somewhat sternly but caringly and Danny sighed frustrated, he didn't want to leave her anywhere alone, knowing that there was possibly a deranged lunatic on the loose.
"You're not going to lose your job, honey. Go get your things and you can leave with the gentlemen, okay. We'll keep them company. It's okay." Dr. Casey said compassionately as he gently squeezed her arm.
"I'll be right back. Excuse me." Vicky said softly as she went inside the locker room.
Danny was angry. Who did this Casey guy think he was? He didn't like the pompous jerk one bit and neither did he appreciate the fact that he kept touching his girlfriend Vicky. Danny was going to tell Dr. Casey as much, when all a sudden, Vicky let out a sickening, bloodcurdling scream that sent a cold chill down everyone's spines.