Title: When the Triumvirate says 'jump', you say 'on who'

Show: the Pretender

Author: Syrai

Genre: Drama, probably

Rating: PG-13 (will probably have nc-17 stuff, too but that's in the later chapters)

Pairing: Miss Parker/Jarod

Status: Work in Progress

Feedback: Loved and cherished, as always.

Summary: Takes place before the two final episodes. Miss Parker has been chasing Jarod for such a long time that sometimes she forgets why she's even doing it… then all the sudden, her father tells her that the Triumvirate has new orders for Miss Parker and they have nothing to do with brining Jarod back...

A/N: Yes I've seen the whole show, each and every single episode and though I was tempted to write a fic that takes place after the 4th season, I decided not to. Just because this is something that's been on my mind ever since I started watching the show and I don't think it would apply, wouldn't be doable that is, after the final episodes. Therefore this thing takes place before those two very critical and final episodes, but will probably reveal the secrets of those two episodes, too. With my nasty twists and evil plots, of course. Wouldn't be fun without them, now would it? That should also explain why everything isn't like in the show, alright? (Sorry, I've just got bored with flames telling me my fan fic/s are different from the show… as if that wasn't the idea of a fan fic, you know? If I have some should-have-known-kind-of-facts wrong, let me know. I can't always remember everything, heh.)

Yes I've seen the whole show, each and every single episode and though I was tempted to write a fic that takes place the 4th season, I decided not to. Just because this is something that's been on my mind ever since I started watching the show and I don't think it would apply, wouldn't be doable that is, after the final episodes. Therefore this thing takes place before those two very critical and final episodes, but will probably reveal the secrets of those two episodes, too. With my nasty twists and evil plots, of course. Wouldn't be fun without them, now would it? That should also explain why everything isn't like in the show, alright? (Sorry, I've just got bored with flames telling me my fan fic/s are different from the show… as if that wasn't the idea of a fan fic, you know? If I have some should-have-known-kind-of-facts wrong, let me know. I can't always remember everything, heh.)

Note: I write this, yes, but my original fics are my priority. I'm also moving and with all the other stuff going on in my life, I may be slow with adding chapters. Don't lose your faith, alright?

Disclaimer: I do not own the characters that the maker/s of the Pretender have created. If I decide to add an original character, well that person I do own then. And if you're smart enough, which I'm sure you are, you'll notice that the title of my fic here has been conducted, so to speak, from a quote said by Miss Parker.

When the Triumvirate says 'jump', you say 'on who'

by Syrai

Prologue – the project Virgo

Miss Parker had always known the assignment given to her would never end. Deep down, she had always known that the deal she had made with the Centre, with her own father, would never let her go from its grasp. She wasn't sure why, though. Her father had secrets he didn't want her knowing about, she was sure of it, so why was it that he always found a way to keep her there when she wanted to leave?

This new assignment of hers was honestly the last straw.

"Daddy, you aren't serious, are you?" The question she asked was said with a fragile tone of voice which surely couldn't have come out her mouth. Miss Parker cleared her throat, refusing to sound that weak. Her father was sitting on his comfy chair, fingers joined and just stared at her with his steely eyes. She felt like sitting down to melt the words spoken by Mr Parker not longer than a minute ago, but couldn't let herself do it. So instead, she hold her position by the door, arms crossed and returned his stare with equally icy one. Only her stare had something more in it than his ever did. Confusion. Disbelief… disgust.

"Yes my angel, the orders were very clear. The Triumvirate thinks you're the best one to handle this particular project and if that's how they feel, well then… they get what they want, you know that."

Didn't they always? Miss Parker snorted out loud. "Is this all because he screwed up the project Gemini?"

Her words had probably hit the target, but he didn't act like they had. Damn. "It doesn't matter. What matters is that you've been ordered to lead the project Virgo, dear. Plus, it'll give you something to do."

Virgo, what a stupid name to give to a project that had nothing to do with virgins, quite the opposite, really.

"Oh, so this is just because you don't want me snooping around here?" Miss Parker asked with her usual cold tone and brushed a lock of brown hair back to its place away from her eye. "Fear I might reveal the big secret you've been keeping from me all along?"

If Mr Parker was getting annoyed by his daughter's accusations, he didn't let it show. That of course annoyed Miss Parker more than she was willing to admit but like her father, she had learnt to keep her emotions to herself.

"Angel, there are no secrets to reveal." Few years back, the smile on his lips would've settled it and she would've let it go and blindly believed him. But she wasn't that naive little girl anymore. "And if there are, they aren't mine. This wasn't my idea, believe me, but I'll make sure you'll execute the plan as ordered. This is not an appropriate time for you to start acting childishly, dear. It's not good for the Centre and it sure as hell isn't good for my reputation either."

As if she cared his reputation anymore. Still, she didn't continue. As the memories told her, it was always useless to build up an argument with her father when it was clear she couldn't prove anything. She knew there was something her father didn't tell her but couldn't find out what it was. As much as she hated the thought, she had to accept the assumption it was something about her mother. If Mr Parker had anything to do with her death… Miss Parker shivered. She loved her father, but she had loved her mother more.

"I'm not doing it", she said, but this time her voice cracked, "You can't make me."

"Yes you will. And yes I can."

She knew he wasn't lying.

"You've been chasing Jarod for months and every time you think you have him, something happens", he pointed out as if she wasn't beaten already.

"Yeah, the Centre comes and fucks it up." She was beaten alright, but not ready to give up. "Really isn't my problem when you think of it. I hunt him down like a good girl should and you let your lapdog send his team to screw it up."

"Don't talk about your brother like that", Mr Parker barked. He was aware of his children not coming along that nicely, but a little quarrel between the two was just the thing the Centre needed to keep up its pace. The more they fought, they more work they did. Jarod had surely become a trophy to win, although he wasn't sure if that was such a good thing on the other hand. Jarod seemed to know things he didn't want him telling his daughter and if she was to caught him first… no one could predict how that meeting would turn out. And yet, here he was, sending her daughter onto a mission where she would forced to be in close contact with the boy-genius.

"Why, you defending a girl-eating cannibal?"

"You have no idea what you're talking about my dear, so stop trying my patience already. You're not getting out of this one. There's a reason for why they chose you but-"

"But it's on need-to-know basis, right daddy?" She cut in angrily, "And I'm not part of the need-to-know list, am I?"

He shook his head sighing and cleared his throat. "I honestly don't see why you're so mad at me, Angel. Every time Lyle's got close to Jarod you come yelling at me how it was your assignment, not his. And now that I'm offering you a chance to get him, you're rebelling."

"I'm not rebelling", she defended herself. How could he say that? First of all, he hadn't offered her a chance to go get him, as he said. Of course it depended on how you defined the phrase 'get him'. It was obvious both her father and Triumvirate was doubting her abilities not only to catch that fleeing son of a bitch, but to bring him back, too. It had proved difficult, that one was for sure. Had they given up on hope and were just going with the second best option or was this really their way to get her out of the Centre for a little while?

Miss Parker wasn't sure what to think. After Jarod had messed up their project Gemini it was more than obvious he was smarter than they really gave him credit for. He wasn't called a prodigy for nothing, after all. So what was this all about? A way to get her out of their way or really some sick plan they had made hoping she would actually be able to pull it through? It could be fun though and it could give her some answers about her mother's faked death.

Nevertheless… Really, it was probably easier to find him and shoot him, than it was to find him and seduce him.

"Angel, be reasonable."

She looked away taking a deep breathe and turned back to her father. "You're really telling me I'm supposed to go do some dirty stuff, get fat, waste 9 months of my life and then give my precious to you so you can study my baby like it was some freakin' animal?"

Mr Parker nodded. "Shortly, yes. But you're really making it sound so cruel when it's not like that, not at all."

It was insane… almost as insane as the fact she was seriously thinking of it. "Oh gods…" She closed her eyes letting her head fall back, "I'll never fit into this dress again."