Chapter One

FBI Agent William Maxwell sadly dropped a handful of dirt into the open grave, onto the casket that belonged to his beloved. He, his friend and partner Ralph Hinkley, and Hinkley's fiancee Pam Davidson, stood silent vigil as the cemetery staff pushed the remaining dirt to fill the fresh grave.

Bill bid his final farewell to the woman he'd loved for less than a year, the first woman he'd cared for in such a way since his wife passed away years before. Now she was gone. The couple thought they'd be safe, seeing as Bill was a professional law enforcement agent, but the enemy had finally outwitted them all and got to her.

O'Neil had redeemed herself in the eyes of the US government, and Bill Maxwell, with information she'd provided that had prevented a disaster-in-the-making at Camp David, Maryland.

The tombstone bore her name, Kimberly Lorraine O'Neil. Bill had only had time to love her for a few months, months that had been rife with tension and joy, doubt then a growing trust, excitement and new discoveries. And then she was gone.

In the early days, she'd explained as well as she could to Bill why she'd done what she did to his beloved America. Her father, and others in his Army unit, had been used, unknown to them, for scientific experiments conducted by the military, at the hands of some very unsavory and unscrupulous men. When she was a teenager and they'd learned about what had been done to her father, she disavowed any loyalty to a country who could do that to one of their own, and over the years had made connections to foreign agents bent on subverting the United States of America.

As the decades passed her, she'd come to realize that it wasn't the entire government who'd done such experiments, but only rogue agencies who were not officially sanctioned. She had also realized, too late, that she was so entrenched in the subterfuge and goings-on that she could not find a safe exit strategy, without risking her own life. She had deliberately not sought close personal relationships for fear of retribution if something went wrong.

Then came the day she met Agent Maxwell.

O'Neil had finagled her way into the Los Angeles office of the FBI, under the guise of "efficiency expert." She had been sent there for the purpose of meeting one William Maxwell, Special Agent, and find out what his secret was to a 98 percent success rate in closing cases. It was truly amazing! Nobody else in the region was even close! What was his secret? How did he "always get his man?"

The personal interest she'd felt in Bill blossomed when he and his friend Ralph encountered her in the Tombs of the Federal Building, where she'd been working, after-hours during the shift change. He made it clear to her, as well, that he was interested in seeing her outside the line of work, and so things fell into place for them both.

After her clandestine life came out into the open, and the two had confessed their devotion to one another, Bill shocked those who knew him well by bailing O'Neil out of jail and refusing to testify against her. He knew, deep in his heart, that she could be reformed; he shocked his friend Pam into saying, "I can't believe this is Bill Maxwell I'm talking to!"

Bill had to laugh when O'Neil replied to his query about fishing. She could bait any hook, live bait or spinner, and the two proceeded to show Ralph, Pam and Ralph's students how to REALLY fish, gooey bait and all. It was one of the best afternoons Bill had ever spent since his wife had passed away. He even enjoyed hanging out with and talking to the juvenile deliquents!

And now he was leaning down to place a bouquet of freshly-picked lilacs onto the fresh soil of O'Neil's grave, knowing the smell of the flowers, the rain gently weeping onto the ground and the scent of the earth would remain in his memory forever.

"Lilacs, Mr. Maxwell," he muttered, too softly for Ralph and Pam to hear. He stood straight once more, folding his hands in front of him, and cleared his throat, hoping he could refrain just a little longer and not sob openly. He tried to focus more on the joy they'd had in their brief time together, not on how very much he missed her.

Pam went to him and tucked her arm through his, leaning her head on his shoulder, not saying a word. They were friends now, truly friends, and words were no longer necessary. Ralph went to his other side and put his hand on Bill's shoulder, also silent.

The three at that fresh grave had been through life and death together, then O'Neil had been in their little group for a time, and now they were back to three.

It was the weekend after that incredibly fun fishing afternoon that Maxwell's and O'Neil's relationship had really taken off.

(Disclaimer: I don't own these characters nor anything to do with the "Greatest American Hero" or "Gilligan's Island" fandoms. Original characters and story lines are my copyright, 2005. No money whatsoever has been made from the writing of this story, in this chapter and any additional ones. I hold an end-user license from to use their rating system for my homepage and all my fictional works.)