Heheh, last chapter for this one, expect "Fully Engaged" story 2 to start next week. I am going to put more time into it if possible. I have about 5 chapters written and at least 4 more mapped out. It may take a while to post because I have to drag things from THIS story into it. At least I don't feel painted into a corner, which I have in other stories. I am surprised these flowed so well. Thanks for the people who stuck with it. And, at the bottom you'll see a few lines from "Fully Engaged" pay attention to them, it will give you a hint as to what happened at the end of this one. At least, I've been giving hints all along this story, if people read authors notes or my little tidbits. Past that, I am a shipper guys, I know I like to take the long and bumpy road to get to the point, but it's fun. ;)
Enjoy! Have a good weekend when we get there. :)
PS: If you have an AOL (AOheLL) address and have been e-mailing me to get the PW for my site and didn't get nada back, well, guess what? AOL bounces my e-mail. Try e-mailing here - or had at least 25 e-mails come back this week, it's getting annoying:P
PS2: Totally don't want to get ahead of myself, but if my cards get played right, there might be a third story. Someone had given me a few ideas which I didn't want to write about, but, seeing as the lose ends seem to remain that way on the show, might be good to tie a few up and bring back an ultimate JAG villain. We'll see. :)
Thanks to: XBlueShadowX, Aimee5, Charmboy4, starryeyes10, Nikki, dansingwolf, jag4ever, lei, Jackia, EternalSleep, Cristina, Tina Frank, achaon, Abigaile, Hieros Gamos, froggy0319, joanoa, JadeAlmasy, SpaceMan546, dansingwolf, carbygirl , JAGJenni, Manda, starryeyes, BiteBeccy, ng59678, LtColDevilDog, martini, mizukimarr, jtbwriter, Macaroon, Lissie, n.k, Lt.jgMegAustin, cbw, dansingwolf, Apion, alix33, jnp, MacHarm4Ever, Tania, Macaroon, harmfan, Jagnut, Claire Vincent, Navy Babe, Nix, Martini, jaggurl, Laura, CoolCat, and anyone else I missed for the Feedback..
Part 15 – Fade To Black
"You've got a thousand wounds to heal. You gotta stop thinking nothing's for real. Electric shock won't bring you back. You're fading baby
You fade to black." – Zeromancer "Fade To Black"
July 16, 2005
Somewhere In The Appalachian Mountains
"Wait, Webb. . .we need to stop." Harm said as he took a seat by the creek. He pulled out of his backpack a bandana which he dipped in the cool water then used to moisten his face. From the front pocket of his pack, he took out a pill bottle, spilled out two small purple pills and downed them with a gulp from his canteen. They'd been hiking since the early morning figuring it was less conspicuous than going in with any other mode of transportation. The objective was to follow the coordinates with the GPS, find out if the planes really were there and then call for back up. The only weapons, a 45mm each, were inside of their packs, concealed from plain view. To the onlooker they were to seem like two friends on a hike, through the mountains. Hopefully the guns would never have to be pulled out.
Webb rose an eyebrow of interest on Harm's inability to resist mush physical strain. Every once and a while they would have to stop to allow him to catch his breath. "You know? I thought you military people were supposed to be fit."
"You've gotta be kidding me, right?" Harm said glaring daggers at Webb. He was never too sure if Webb just had stupid moments or if he said things because he liked have people pissed off at him. "I was locked up for almost five months. I've been in bed for nearly two weeks. . .It's a miracle I made it this far, okay? Cut me some slack."
"Okay, okay. You don't have to bite my head off, Rabb." He raised his hands in surrender and picked his own rock to sit on. "Look, Harm. I know you and I are. . . in a bad place. . ."
That comment was awarded with Harm's mirthless laughter. "Bad place?" The laughs died down as Harm came to his feet. "Look, just don't talk to me for the rest of this trip unless you need to. You aren't good to me if I beat you into a blood pulp."
Webb nodded. "I deserve that, I know. . . But you need to know that I never meant to hurt Sarah. It's the opposite, I was trying to protect her."
"Protect her?" That was the most ridiculous thing anyone could have told Harm. He still couldn't get why a man, who obviously wanted to conquer Mac, could take her into hell and come out smelling like roses. "When you take a woman you supposedly care for into a hot zone, it's not called protection, Clay. . ." Anger was rising up into him with each breath, so much that it was hard to bring under control. "You say you did it to protect her? Then where the hell were you when Sadik Fahd paid her a visit, huh?"
Webb shoved Harm back, or at least attempted to, but the man's six foot four frame had become an immovable object. "Well, what about you, Rabb? Where the hell were you when that happened? I mean, you have to play hero all the time. Why couldn't you save her then?" He moved closer to Harm, standing just a few inches away and trying to intimidate him. "You know what I think? I think you don't have the guts to stand up and be a man. . . Sarah scares you. . .She turns you to shit and you can't deal with it. . .Sad part is that she actually wants you. . .And you aren't man enough to bed a needy female Marine!"
Harm rose his fist and struck Webb on the face, high up on his cheekbone. It wasn't another broken nose, which Webb deserved, but it would, at least, leave a mark. He grabbed Webb by the shirt, tempted to strike again, but instead lifted him closer. "How could we ever have considered you a friend? . . I know she hurt you and I am glad she did. Because Mac doesn't deserve a two-faced, lying bastard like you, Webb." He released his grip on the agent, then pulled out the canteen for another long gulp. "Get your ass in gear. I want to get home as soon as possible."
They set off hiking a few minutes later, but this time Harm was leading them through. He forced his body to continue, though it pleaded with him to stop and rest. About an hour into the walk, he had to oblige. He took another pull from the canteen and swallowed another set of pills.
Webb frowned at that. No matter what had occurred, Rabb was a friend once and he didn't like seeing him that way. "What are all the pills for?"
Harm was tempted not to answer, but he figured a little conversation was better than that horrible silence. "The ones I took an hour ago are anti-opiates. I have to take them for about two months to fully detox." He took another sip of water and spit some out as he rinsed his mouth from the odd taste of the pills. "These I just took are like some sort of a multivitamin to help recover from the nutrients that opiates leach out."
"You know, I don't think I could have lived through what you did." He took a seat on a log next to Harm. Of all the things he's dealt with, the torture wasn't the worst. The worst was knowing that it could happen again in his line of work. Hearing Harm relive it all the night before was slightly unnerving. Though he seemed to have kept cool about it, inside he was anything but. "I know we're trained for that, but. . .no training in the world could prepare you."
All of the pilot training courses in the world couldn't quite prepare Harm either. Sure, he'd been in some sort of personal hell once. But, what Temir did to him was unfathomable. "Us pilots are trained for it too. . .I am ashamed to say it but. . .I've never prayed so much for death."
"At least you didn't have her in another room waiting on you."
There was that; and it was the only thing positive about Harm's whole experience – Mac was safe. "Of which I thank God for. . .I would have cracked just to keep her safe."
Even after everything he'd put her through, Clay wanted to make her love him again. Not that he was convinced that she was fully in love with him, and that was the problem. Sure, she said she loved him, but was she in love? No. He knew full well that she was in love with another. "How are you and Mac?"
"Worked it out yet?"
Whatever friendly moment they had just had was crushed before Harm's eyes. Webb was fishing for information, he was certain of it and Harm didn't like it one bit. "What is it that you think you know, Webb?"
He knew that whatever he was about to say was in favor of Harm and Mac being together. But if that is what it took to put him in Mac's good graces, then he would try anything. He didn't like her hating him. "I know that she hurt for your loss more than she ever would have for mine. . . Get your head out of your ass, Rabb. . . She loves you. Moreover, she's in love with you and. . . it is my opinion that she's always been. . .and YOU, my friend, are in love with her too."
"Look at lot has happened, Webb. . ." He said it with such finality that it was as if he almost believed that things were never going to happen for them. "Too much damned water under the proverbial bridge."
With an exasperated sigh, Webb stood up and began searching around the ground. "I need a rock, or stick or something."
Harm chuckled, slightly amused at how erratic Clay was behaving. "You looking to hit me over the head or something?"
"Whatever it takes to knock some sense into you."
"This thing you've lead us on isn't helping Mac and I you know?" Harm stood and grabbed the GPS. "C'mon let's get going, according to this thing we're almost there."
Clay blocked Harm's retreat. "You have had chances upon chances, Harm. . ." When Harm tried to protest, he shoved him backwards this time managing to move the six foot four frame. "Consider yourself lucky that you got another chance because you could have died out there without ever seeing her again."
"I do, now let's get going."
"No, you don't know." Webb insisted, getting Harm's attention. "She WAITED for you. . . People, now a days, don't wait for anything. And against her better judgment, and everyone trying to convince her that you were gone for good, she WAITED and BELIEVED. . .So don't be a fool. . . She needs. . " The sounds of a gunshots, cut his words short. "What was that?"
"Gunshots." Harm reached inside his backpack and took out his weapon. "I think we might want to have this convo another time, don't you?"
Taking out his own weapon, Webb agreed. "Good plan."
"This way." Harm lead them through the forest, staying low as they followed the sound of disembodied voices. There was another set of gun shots ringing out in the humid air. They followed the sound to find two men. One of them was holding the weapon towards a makeshift target. The other was attempting to speak over a sattelite phone. Taking a look at the GPS, Harm found that the coordinates were missing. He was going to attempt asking Webb about the strange occurrence when another man came behind them.
"Well, well, Commander, Mr. Webb, nice of you to drop by." The man, Alex Hendricks, Harm was familiar with, they'd met once when he was first training to fly the Aurora. Before leaving the CIA, Harm found that Alex had been moved up to field operative.
Clay shook his head in disgust. "Alex, nice meeting you here."
Alex pointed a 45mm and motioned for Harm and Webb to drop their guns which he picked up and tucked into his pants. "Move." He motioned for them to move forward and followed behind as they walked to where the other two men were. "You know, Commander, it's been hell trying to find you. The higher ups will be pleased."
"Well, sorry I couldn't make it easier for you." Harm joked sarcastically then glared over at Webb. "In and out, huh? Remind me to shoot you later."
"Will you shut up, Rabb?" Webb yelled at Harm and sighed exasperatedly. "The planes aren't anywhere near here are they, Alex?"
Alex shook his head. "We don't know where they are. . . But you are so fickle you'll believe anything. . . We planted that file on Kershaw when one of our men was sent to kill him. And you took the bait, hook, line and sinker."
"Well, you didn't do too much homework on this. . .Backup will be here in any moment."
Alex laughed with amusement. "What back up? . . . Oh, the one you requested to standby?" Laughing again, he pointed to the other two men. "You are looking at them."
"CIA never got my message." Webb said with a sigh, then glanced over at Harm. "I'm sorry about this."
"Sorry? We're about to be killed and all you can do is say you're sorry?" Harm said loudly. "Shoot him first, will ya?" He requested from Alex.
"At least we're merciful about it. Normally the government doesn't treat two traitors like you so kindly. . . Webb, how could you turn? Damnit your family's been in the agency since the beginning. . .How could you?" One of the other men yelled, exasperated by the so called – super agent's – tactics.
Webb shook his head and attempted to vehemently deny the accusation. "Turned? I haven't turned, you have. . . Damnit you're being used!"
"Shut up!" Alex motioned at one of the two men and pointed at the satellite phone. "Call the boss, let them know that Rabb is now out of the way." Then men did as told, but, for some unforeseen reason, the sat phone wasn't working. "Gimme that!" In trying to take the phone away from one of the two men, a small brawl ensued. During which, they'd forgotten about Harm and Webb.
As if planned, both Harm and Webb rushed the men, hoping to grab a weapon or at least hurt one of them so badly they could have the upper hand. One of the men hit his head against a rock and was instantly out cold. Alex grabbed Harm, placing a hard punch on his abdomen, winding Harm who wasn't prepared for too much physical exertion. The other man, Webb had managed to subdue. As he made to turn around and help Harm, a shot rang out and then two others. Blood pooled from the bodies, turning the rocky ground crimson. . .
"Harm!" Miles away, as she sat in the office trying to get on with her day, Mac felt it – something was wrong. Harm was hurt.
TO BE CONTINUED. . .
From Story 2 – "Fully Engaged"
General Creswell followed Mac through the corridors of Bethesda. "Colonel, will you tell me what in the hell is going on?"
"You won't believe me, unless I show you, sir." She said and swiftly wound up heading towards the ICU.
"Commander Turner, I think I've lost my mind."
"Why's that Comman. . ." Glancing to the side, Sturgis felt a sudden wave of vertigo as he stared in disbelief. "Bud, are you seeing what I am seeing?"
"He attacked you!. . ." He yelled so loudly that, had it been a regular work day, the bullpen would have been stopped dead in it's tracks. "He's a dead man!"
Mac waved off his attempts at gallantry. "Oh, don't worry about it. . .after the place that I kicked him, I doubt there's much man left to kill." She grinned slightly, it had been a cheap shot, but there weren't many self-help books or videos in the art of brawling in an automobile.
Whatever Major Chris Steele expected, this wasn't it. He'd walked into the mansion, headed straight to Ray's office and, the moment he walked in: WHAM! "What the HELL was that for?" He yelled at Ray who'd slapped him straight across the face with a force that Chris didn't know the older man had.
Chris' jaw tightened, no it couldn't be. Rabb couldn't be alive, it was just insane. "What do you want me to do?"
"Go on with things as planned. . .if you find him. . .kill him."
"How'd you learn all of this, Bud?" Sturgis stood to the side, admiring how the young Lt. Commander's computer knowledge had created two fake IDs.
Tentatively, she placed a hand on his back, noting the way he tensed at her touch. With a frown, she remembered the scars, ones that had healed, but were probably still painful. "Do they still hurt? The scars?"
"I think they always will in some way." It wasn't the physical pain, that he knew he could get through, it was the emotional ones that still plagued him. When he closed his eyes, his mind had days of throwing him back into his hell. When would he feel safe in his own skin?
They stared at each other, neither wanting to go in just yet. "I know, Mac. . . Believe me, I know." He leaned forward and. . .
Joanoa – LOL! Spooks suck! At least, I haven't found one I like passed Bond, James Bond. ;) But that's cos when I was little I had a Roger Moore thing, hell, I still do. :D :swoon;)
BiteBeccy :Gasp: Kill Steele! Jeez, repeat after me – THERAPY. Side note: has anyone noticed that therapist breaks into The Rapist. ;) Okay, so ignore therapy, just take deep breaths! He may die yet:D
Foxy – Well Hello! Long time! Took a Fanfiction sabbatical huh? I did too before this one, I needed a break. Welcome back though! BTW – When you writing again? Do I need to start my threats? I have a sick mind, I can come up with good ones! BTW – I ramble too, so I don't mind really. ;)
Laura – I don't think hitting him over the head with a 2x4 would teach the motherFer.
Harmfan – It's a gift. ;) Webb set Harm up without even realizing he was being set up. Our spookboy isn't too bright sometimes. I attribute it to getting heartbroken by Mac. ;) LOL! Rides not over yet, this is just that point where you can catch your breath. Well, or lose your breath. Whatever, but there's more. And it's gonna get fun. Course ,my ideas of fun are odd, but… well whatever. ;)
Charmboy – Hey! Your laziness is contagious! I did the same day the other day. Grrr! About the pressing charges, well. . .uh, you'll see. ;)
Tina – Spookboy is a dork. Thank god he is just a char on a show, can you imagine if he actually worked for the CIA?