Shackled.

Chapter three

*

The trio sat in front of the fireplace, none of them said a word. Slowly Miss Parker turned her head to look at Jarod. She wanted to know what he'd meant with 'I know what this is about' Even though she was confused, somewhere deep down inside she knew. And she knew it had something to do with her mother. She took a deep, trembling breath before she opened her mouth to speak.

"Jarod, it's her? Isn't it? She's the reason that we're here."

It took a while before Jarod answered.

"Yeah, I don't know how it is possible, but I think we're meant to learn a lesson out of this. And when we've done that. We'll return to Blue Cove." Jarod explained.

"What!?" Miss Parker asked puzzled.

"I think she want all of us to learn how to show our true emotions, to cooperate and be good to each other."

"Oh C'mon! She's dead for gods sake!" Lyle snarled.

Miss Parker gave him a sad look. As Lyle saw the look on her face he regretted what he'd said. He cursed out quietly to himself. Dammit! Why did he have to hurt her all the time? Why couldn't he just keep his damn thoughts to himself? He sighed deeply.

"Parker." Jarod started.

"No, it's okay." Miss Parker mumbled. With a sigh, she leaned back against Jarod's chest. She closed her eyes. Jarod placed his free arm around her waist, softly rubbing it against her stomach.

all of the sudden a loud crash sounded right behind them. Both Jarod and Lyle quickly turned their heads to look. Both let out gasps of horror as they realized what happened. A big piece of wood had fallen out on the floor. Before some of them had a chance to throw it back, the flames got hold of the carpet in front of the fireplace. And soon it had spread to the bed and the curtains.

"Oh my god" we have to get out of here!" Jarod screamed.

"Can't you stop it?!"

"No! Miss Parker, C'mon!" Jarod helped her to get up on her feet and they all managed to run out of the door as the flamed grew bigger.

*

"What are we going to do now? There's no chance we can survive out here. It's freezing." Lyle said, eyeing the flames devour the small cabin. He turned his head to give his sister a look. She was standing close to Jarod, literally pressing herself against him. Her whole body was shaking with cold. Jarod had both his arms around her, trying his best to keep her warm. Lyle moved closed and did the same.

"I don't know. There has to be something we can do." Jarod said. He tried to convince both Parker's that everything would be okay. But honestly, he wasn't sure. For the moment the flamed kept the air quite warm, and Miss Parker was already freezing this much. He didn't even wanna think of what would happen when they disappeared.

*

The snow continued falling. Slowly the flames and the warmth faded away. Jarod gave Lyle a concerned look.

Lyle cleared his throat. "We can't stay here. If we'll keep moving.it will keep our body-heats up." He said.

Jarod nodded slowly. He sighed. "Miss Parker, do you think you can walk?"

Miss Parker shook her head. "I'm so cold." She whispered weakly.

"I know honey.but you have to try."

Miss Parker nodded. Slowly they started to move. Jarod and Lyle had their arms around Miss Parker to steady her. As good as they could because of the chains. Miss Parker moaned, every step she took made her shoulder ache.

"Jarod.I can't.it hurts so much."

Jarod looked at her. It looked like she was about to faint. And she was deadly pale.

"Do you want me to carry you?" He asked sadly.

Miss Parker just nodded weakly.

"Lyle help me. I can't do this by my self. The chain is in the way."

After a while, and with a lot of struggling. They'd managed to place Miss Parker in Jarod's arms. She had her healthy arm wrapped around his neck.

"Better?" Jarod asked softly.

"No." Miss Parker whimpered.

"Oh honey.I wish I could take away the pain."

Miss Parker didn't say anything. She closed her eyes and buried her face against Jarod's neck. A few tears escaped her eyes, no one noticed.

When they walked a while. They suddenly realized they were on the top on a mountain. As they stood on the edge, looking out over the never-ending white landscape, they spotted lights on the other side. Only a long thin suspension-bridge separated the cliffs. Jarod stared at it. He slowly shook his head in disbelief. They really had to use it. There was no other choice. He gave Lyle a look. It seemed like he was thinking the same.

"C'mon." Jarod finally said.

"I just hope it doesn't break. It looks very fragile." Lyle said with a look of concern on the bridge.

Jarod nodded.

The trio walked up to the bridge. Lyle was the first to try it. Jarod slowly and carefully followed, still carrying Miss Parker. He glanced down at the deep abyss. The gap between the cliffs was not that wide, but it was extremely deep. He shivered, knowing that if they fell down there. There was no chance to survive.

Everything went fine, without any problems, 'till they reached the middle of it. Suddenly it started to crack. Lyle stopped dead in his tracks.

"Jarod?" He asked. He didn't know what to do. Terrified he looked down.

"Just continue.but hurry!" Jarod said. He tried to sound calm but Lyle heard the terror in his voice.

Not until now, Miss Parker decided to look up She slowly turned her head to look at Jarod. Then she scanned the surroundings. She let out a loud gasp of surprise and horror as she realized they were practically in the air.

"Jarod, what's going on? Why are." Miss Parker never had a chance to finish the sentence. Before she had time to react she heard something breaking. Then she fell. The pain in her shoulder as the chain around her wrist was turning it upwards almost made her faint.

Lyle managed to get to the other side before it was too late. He saw Jarod and Miss Parker fall down with the bridge. The chain almost dragged him down as well, but somehow he managed to remain in a half lying position on the ground. The handcuff cut deeper and deeper into his flesh, making him cry out loud. As he heard Miss Parker scream, he forced himself to concentrate, to ignore his own pain.

"Parker" Hold on.I'll help you!" He screamed. He started to panic. How would he be able to get both Jarod and his sister up?

Miss Parker didn't say anything. Lyle tried desperately to drag her and Jarod up. But soon he realized it was not going to work. It only caused his own wrist to hurt even more, and Miss Parker to scream even louder. For one moment he just laid there, watching his sister scream in pain. He felt tear brim in his eyes, seeing her like that made his heard ache. He really felt sorry for her. He also knew he had to do something, and that's fast! He didn't knew how much longer Miss Parker could take it. He didn't even wanna think of how she must be feeling. Having both her and Jarod's weight on her already hurt shoulder, he couldn't imagine the pain.

"Jarod! Give me your hand!"

"I can't reach!" Jarod screamed. He gave Miss Parker a look, the last thing he wanted to do was hurt her even more. But he knew he had no choice but to use her to reach Lyle. That was the only way. Slowly he grabbed her legs and started to climb upwards. He knew the abrupt movements would hurt her wrist badly, and he felt very bad doing that to her. He heard her screaming and crying, he got her blood on him, He realized her shoulder had started to bleed again, poor Parker.

After a while he managed link his hand into Lyle's. Bit by bit, Lyle managed to pull Jarod up. Then they both helped each other with Miss Parker.

*

When all of them had managed to get up, none of them had the strength to move. They were just sitting in the snow, leaning against each other. Miss Parker was whimpering and moaning non stop. She had her hand pressed against her shoulder to stop the bleeding. Both her wrists were aching and bleeding badly as well. But it was nothing in comparison to her shoulder. Almost in no time the snow were colored red. Lyle gave it a look, then he looked at his sister. She was desperately clutching her wound, trying to keep it from bleeding. But it didn't help at all. Lyle moved closer to her.

"Hey Sis, I'm sorry about the things I said." He warily placed his arm around her, placing his other hand over her wound. Miss Parker moved her own blood-covered hand to let Lyle help her.

"And I'm sorry about this." Lyle whispered.

"It wasn't your fault." Miss Parker whispered.

"Yes it was. But I will never hurt you again.I promise.Sis, I love you."

Miss Parker was quiet for a while. Slowly she turned her head to look at him. "I love you too." She said almost inaudibly.

Jarod gave them a sad look. Of course he was glad that Miss Parker and Lyle could admit their feelings. But he couldn't help but wish she had told him those three magical words.

"Lyle." Miss Parker started. Her voice was weak and full of pain. "Maybe that dream about you.ehm.do you think that there's a chance that I just 'mixed up' yours and.Jarod's name?" She asked. 'Lyle gave her a confused look. What was she talking about? He understood nothing. Suddenly he realized what he meant. He smiled slightly. Was she still thinking of that?

"Yes.I think you did. I'm sure you did!" He said with an encouraging smile.

Miss Parker slowly turned her head to look at Jarod. Their eyes met.

"Jarod.do you want to make my dream come true?" She whispered.

Jarod smiled. "Yes! Just promise me Lyle has nothing to do with it. Even though he's nice now.a threesome is not a number one on my list!" He smirked.

Miss Parker gave him a weak smile. "I promise. Jar I." Her voice trailed off. She looked down at her hands. Jarod moved closer to her. He gently placed his hand under her chin, forcing her to face him.

"I know Parker, you don't have to say it." He whispered.

Miss Parker didn't say anything. She looked into Jarod's deep brown eyes. As she saw the way he looked at her, she realized how much he cared, how much he loved her. Suddenly without warning, Jarod leaned in and softly placed a kiss on Miss Parker's lips. With a moan she responded. Kissing Jarod almost made her forget about the pain. All she could think of was him. She didn't even care if her brother saw it.

"Oh Jar..." Miss Parker moaned. "I love you."

*

BLUE COVE - DELAWARE.

MISS PARKER'S HOUSE.

*

Miss Parker awoke in her bed. First she was confused. Where was she? And where were Jarod and Lyle? Maybe it had just been a dream. She sighed. Why was everything good that happened in her life only just a dream? She remembered the kiss with Jarod like it had happened in real life. God, she wished it had been for real. She would have done anything to make it real. With an unhappy sigh, she turned her head to find a more comfortable way to sleep. That's when she saw it! Her white sheets were covered in blood. She let out a gasp of horror. When she tried to sit up she felt a fiery pain in her shoulder. She screamed out loud, clutching it. Slowly she eyed her wrists; Miss Parker inhaled sharply as she saw the deep bleeding cuts on them. But to her surprise, there was no chain.

"Oh god! It was real!"

Just then her cell phone rang. She reached for it, flipped it open and answered.

"What?" Her voice was trembling and full of pain.

"Miss Parker?"

"Jarod? Can you come.my shoulder hurts so much." Miss Parker pleaded. "So it was real. I started to doubt, but when I saw the mark on my wrist." "Yes, it's real." Miss Parker whimpered. "I'll be there as soon as I can. Just try to relax.it helps the pain."

"Thank you." Miss Parker slowly hung up. She placed the pone on the table next to her bed and slowly lay down again. She moaned as her shoulder sent waves of pain through her body.

About twenty minutes later, Jarod arrived. Before he walked up the stairs he searched through the kitchen for painkillers. When he'd found what he was looking for her walked upstairs and into Miss Parker's bedroom.

"Honey.I'm here." He said as he sat down on the edge of the bed. He flinched as he saw the blood.

"Parker.you need to get to the hospital." He said as he softly ran his fingers through her hair.

Miss Parker nodded, without saying anything.

"Can you help me?" She finally asked. Somehow it didn't feel strange to depend on him, to ask for help. Not anymore.

"Of course. Here, take this." Jarod said, handing her a glass of water and a painkiller. Miss Parker smiled, taking the pill.

About a half an hour later the painkiller had set in, and Jarod helped Miss Parker to get out of her bed.

"Here, hold this against the wound." Jarod said, giving her a small towel. "Can you walk?" He asked worriedly.

Miss Parker nodded. "Yeah, Jarod have I told you how much it means to me to have you by my side?"

"You don't have to.I'll always be there for you.I love you."

"And I love you." Miss Parker smiled. "I could tell you that a hundred of times. It feels so good to finally be able to." She said.

Jarod smiled. "Go ahead! I won't complain." He smirked.

Miss Parker giggled.

Jarod looked at her, rather amused. He'd never thought he would hear Miss Parker giggle. It was really fun seeing her like this. She seemed like a different person. He could hardly believe how much one day in the mountains could change her so much. He wished they could have been trapped there a long time ago. Not only for his own sake, but for Miss Parker's. If that was what she needed to be able to show her true emotions, and with that be happy. It wasn't such a bad thing after all.

*

LATER - BLUE COVE HOSPITAL.

*

Jarod was sitting in the waiting room, staring at the door there Miss Parker was. He started to get impatient. How could it take so long time to stitch a few stitches?! What if something else was wrong? As he sat there, he suddenly heard someone call his name. He looked up and saw Lyle walk up to him. Jarod immediately stiffened. He got up on his feet, ready to run of it was necessary.

"I'm not here to catch you. Just relax." Lyle said with a sigh.

Jarod relaxed a little but kept an eye at the other man. "Are you alone?" He asked, looking around for sweepers. But to his surprise there wasn't any.

"Yes, no one knows that I'm here."

"What are you doing here then?"

"I'm looking for Parker.and since she wasn't at her house, only her blood- covered bed. I guessed she was here. Is she okay?"

Jarod could hear the concern in the other mans voice.

"Yeah, it's her shoulder. She will be alright."

"Thank god.I thought something much worse had happened to her." Lyle sighed with relief.

There was a silence. Both Lyle and Jarod sat down, waiting for Miss Parker.

"First I thought it had been a dream, but when I saw this." Lyle said, showing his hurt wrist. "I knew it was for real."

Jarod nodded.

Lyle looked at him. "Are you alright?" He asked.

Jarod stared at him, stunned. Was it possible that Lyle cared about his wellbeing? That was just too weird.

Lyle smiled. Of course Jarod was confused. He couldn't explain it, but their little adventure up in the cabin somehow changed him. Made him realize that life is to short to waste it with hatred and evilness. He'd let his guard down, given up his fa├žade. And to his surprise, he actually liked it. Finally being himself made him feel better, made him feel alive. He smiled at Jarod.

"Have you swallowed your tongue or something?" He asked with a smirk.

"No.you just.surprised me.did you really." Jarod started, but stopped as he realized how dumb he must be sounding.

"I'm fine. Thank you for asking." He finally said.

Just then Miss Parker walked out of the room. She stopped for a while as she saw Jarod and Lyle next to each other. With a smile she walked up to them. Jarod and Lyle got up on their feet.

"Sis! I'm glad you're okay!" Lyle said as he warily hugged her. Miss Parker was too shocked to move. Jarod laughed as he saw the look on her face. Lyle let go of her, letting Jarod take his place. Jarod gently placed his arms around her, pulling her close. Miss Parker leaned her head against his shoulder, her healthy arm around his neck.

"Missed me that much?!" Jarod smirked. "What did you do in there for so long anyway?" He added.

"It wasn't my fault.that damn doctor let me wait forever.I would have killed him if I have had my gun." Miss Parker purred, burying her face in his neck.

"He's lucky you hadn't." Jarod smiled.

Suddenly Miss Parker pulled away. "Lyle! We need to get to the Centre. Daddy will kill us if we don't show up! And we're gonna need a hell of a good excuse." She said.

Lyle shook his head. "I don't think we need to worry about that." He said.

"What!"

"Don't you know which day it is? According to the time, we haven't been gone at all."

"What do you mean?" Jarod asked confused.

"I don't know how, but the time stood still as we were in that cabin. We're back at the exact same moment as we got there. The work day is over. Dad doesn't know that we've been away." Lyle explained.

"Really!" Miss Parker said. She turned to Jarod. "That means we have the whole nigh to ourselves!" She paused and looked down at her feet. Jarod was just about to ask her what was wrong when she continued.

"The only problem is my shoulder.I can't move it." She said in a low voice. As Jarod saw the sad look on her face, he once again placed his arms around her.

"Honey.we can wait.it's up to you.and besides you don't need your shoulder." He said softly.

Miss Parker gave him an unhappy look. "But I want us to be together." She mumbled.

"We have our whole lives to be together.if we do 'that' now, I'm afraid I'll.I just want you to be comfortable.not in pain." Jarod said.

Miss Parker smiled slightly. "Thank you for being so understanding."

There was a silence.

"Jarod, can you at least stay.I don't want to be alone." Miss Parker almost whispered.

"Of course!"

Lyle watched them for a while. He smiled to himself. He didn't wanna interrupt, but did it anyway.

"Hey! We better get going. And Sis.don't worry about the Centre. You don't need to be there tomorrow. I'm fixing a false lead on Jarod and telling dad I'm taking you with me."

Miss Parker looked at him. "Thank you."

"You're welcome. I just want you to be happy. And if that implies our dear LabRat, it's okay for me."

Miss Parker gave him a big smile. Then she turned and started to walk. Lyle and Jarod walked on each side of her. Miss Parker sighed happily. She thought of the letter they'd found in the cabin. And the beautiful music they'd heard. Maybe her dream would come true. Right now, everything seemed bright. She just hoped it wouldn't change. She wanted to feel this happy forever. With Jarod and her brother by her side, it couldn't be better. It was everything she had ever dreamt of. Especially that Jarod-part. And maybe now when Lyle had changed, he would understand when she tells him she's leaving the Centre. She knew she couldn't stay there. She couldn't risk loosing Jarod. Even though Lyle had changed his mind about capturing him, she knew her father and Raines didn't share that opinion. But somehow she wasn't worried. Somewhere deep down inside she knew everything would work out. That when she decided to leave, both Jarod and her brother would be on her side. Miss Parker smiled to herself. Quietly she thanked her mother, without her none of this would be happening. She smiled as she felt both men moving closer to her, placing their arms around her waist. She moaned softly, letting them know she liked it. If this was the prize of being shot. It was definitely worth it. It was perfect!

THE END.