Please see author's note in my profile for more information.
Beta'd by memorial-ETHOS. Note: "I've corrected, to my own knowledge, her grammar. The majority of the story is left in tact to it's original version."
Chapter One: The Crossing
All good things eventually come to an end. Dr. Fenway had learned that the hard way. Three failed marriages and a so-so career that hadn't really accomplished anything taught him that lesson far too late in life to do anything about it. Sure, he used to be the medical director for NASA, but who had honestly ever gave a damn about that? Life had been easy for Dr. Fenway; he never really had to deal with much of anything at NASA. Well, he had to put up with astronauts who hated their doctor, and administrators who didn't really know anything... It was nothing like what he had to deal with now... His mission was to find a cure for something that was constructed by an alien race so advanced that their technology bordered on the supernatural... Figures. He had made it to his fifties, hadn't been drafted into any wars, and had avoided most of the situations that could get someone killed real fast, yet here he was, stuck in a city he hated, going against a very real alien threat. And just when he had started feeling safe...
'Tis life though...
The days had passed rather slowly at first, but, of course, they now felt like they flew by. Time, when it's accompanied by adrenaline, seems to do that... September 16th, 2005 had brought on the beginning of a new age for humanity. It was up to six people to make sure that new age was ushered in as peacefully as possible...
Molly Caffrey led this mis-matched group composed of three scientists, a soldier, and the deputy national security advisor, J.T. Baylock. At that moment, her job was getting harder then ever before... Not only did she have to deal with infectees, possible outbreaks, an alien baby, and the possibility of herself turning into an infectee. Now she had to deal with the new national security advisor, Ed Whitaker.
Her raven locks fell around her face, her head was in her hands; sometimes this all seemed like too much for even her to handle. She couldn't take it coldly like Cavennaugh, or cynically like Fenway, and she couldn't drown herself in booze like Ramsey. She couldn't even try to forget it with the ones she loved, like Lucas could. Her family was hours away! And now she couldn't even talk to Andrea... She stopped her sobbing and tried to compose herself before anyone walked in the room. It wouldn't do for anyone to see her like this. She was supposed to be strong, that was her job. To be strong and composed, to be a leader.
Leader's were overrated. She took a deep breath and straightened herself up while making a grab for her purse and taking out the small hand mirror all women seemed to have. It wouldn't do for anyone to see her like this. She couldn't be perceived as weak; to be looked upon as fragile meant that she could loose Threshold. And if she lost control of this plan... Well, the world just might end...
She peered into the looking glass, covering up the bags underneath her eyes. That was another thing; She could never let anyone know she was missing sleep, least of all Fenway. Molly hated the prospect of medical leave most of all. She arranged her hair in a bun so no one would notice the limpness to it, and applied a fresh coat of foundation and treated her puffy eyes with eye drops. She stood up and pulled down vainly at her now wrinkled pants suit. Finally, she looked composed. All she lacked was the fully confident expression, and she assumed this as she walked out the door...
She smiled as she passed the guards who were stragically placed in the building, Molly was headed towards the med lab. The baby was soon to be born, even though it was up to her to make a difficult decision. The child could be born an infectee... Fenway had left it up to her to decide if he should give the woman an abortion or not, which was a very difficult decision indeed.
It was one of the hardest decisions she had ever faced; was it even right to make this choice for another woman? It wasn't as much a matter of human life, but that of "was this her choice to make". The poor woman had tried so hard to have a baby in the first place, but if it was born an alien... Molly didn't even want to comprehend that, she didn't want to think it. This was someone she could not save.
And in Molly's thoughts, no one was beyond redemption.
When Fenway looked up from his latest blood sample, Molly was in the door. "What is it now!" he grumbled before looking back down through his microscope.
"I haven't made a decison, yet. I really want your opinion on this one, Fenway."
He looked back up at her, "My opinion? I don't have an opinion. That's why I left it up to you. I've got a recommendation, but I'm not choosing on this one. It would be easier to have the baby abort, instead of it going through life as an infectee. The problem I have with it is that the woman wants to keep her child. Its not my call-," he paused and pointed at the sleeping infectee, "its your's or hers." The doctor went back to studying his sample.
Molly sat down on a stool next to him, "Yes, I know what you're talking about. No matter what, she's still a sentient aware being. And she wants to keep the child."
"Yes, and what right do we have to circumvent her rights? I know its dangerous, but there's no guarantee if the child's infected or not. Its way too early to run the right tests."
Caffrey nodded, "We'll wait till we find out for sure then." She stood up and walked across the room, pausing at the infectees bedside while giving a sigh. Then she walked over to the still unconcious Gunneson.
"Will he ever wake up again?"
"I really don't know. There's no telling with the infectees, if he was just human. Then no, I wouldn't place a bet on him waking up. But since he's been infected, there's probably a good chance that one day he will wake."
"Hmm..." she looked back at Fenway, "What's he even doing up here?"
"I couldn't provide him adequate medical care down there. I don't like going down to the holding cells."
Caffrey nodded before leaving the room.
Cavennaugh was pacing in the break room. For some reason he hated to be cooped up like this. He needed to be out doing something instead of pacing back and forth. Hello wall, its nice to see you again. Once more turn of the heels, and there's the other wall.
He sighed. There had to be something to do. He thought about calling Cynthia, but... No, he couldn't do that here. What was there to do for a soldier in this place other then to guard the prisoners? They were already heavily guarded, though. He wasn't needed.
This had been his problem ever since he was little; he got bored too easy. That had been one of the reason why he was sent to military school. Boredom was met with things to do, so boredom was best to be avoided there.
It couldn't be avoided here though. Sean was many things, but he certainly wasn't a scientist or a beauracrat. Yet, here he was stuck amongst them, without anything to do but to be head of security. Not that it was boring all of the time. Sometimes he actually got to something. He grinned, thinking about the time...
Suddenly the alarms were echoing around the building. Sean's eyes widened; he no longer had a reason to be bored after all...
Thirty minutes earlier:
Caffrey walked into the meeting room. "J.T., what's wrong? What was so urgent that you rang?" she asked, holding up her phone.
"Ah, well, yes its important." J.T. had never been hesitant to tell Molly anyting, but this... Well, this might break her.
"Whitaker is interested in Libby Drennan's baby. He's decided for you that the child will be born, whether its infected or not." J.T. finally said after clearing his throat.
Molly blinked for a few seconds, "Wh-what?" she stuttered. "What right does he have to make that decision!"
"Well, he is our boss. And he's actually the one in charge of Threshold. Molly, you know this. You're only in charge because he says you are. That doesn't change the fact that he can change your orders, and he just did that." J.T. looked uncomfortable.
Molly was still outraged. "That child is most likely an alien infectee! It WILL be dangerous, and most likely end up killing someone before this over. He does know that, doesn't he!"
"Yes, he said he understood the risks, but it'll all be worth it at the end."
"Huh? Don't tell me; this is political, isn't it! This isn't about abortion rights is it?" Molly's face seemed to go as bright as her shirt.
"Yes, he's playing politics." J.T. confirmed.
Molly's eyes flashed. "It figures! He just has to inject politics where they don't belong! This isn't about rights. This is about whether we allow an alien to be born right underneath our noses or not!"
"Yes, I know Caffrey! And I agree with you. He's our boss though, so we'd best lay quiet on this one. We need to keep our jobs, alright? If we don't... We just need to keep them. This way we can stop something else from happening." Baylock looked away for a moment before sighing. "There are other things I want to talk about with you, Caffrey."
"Go ahead." she said rather forcibly.
"The data-miners have found nothing on Crewman Pena or Captain Manning. Instead they have discovered some interesting correlations between the money being received by Sanford and Captain Manning's trip here."
"What do you mean?" she asked.
"Its almost as if they have a plan of their own, Molly. We know they can communicate from long distances and you guys haven't figured out how to detect dreams yet. What I'm saying is that both of them may be here again. They're congregating."
Molly blinked. "I don't have a plan for an organized plot by the aliens... Wait a second! I see what you mean. Remember at the plant? When this all started they met there. Maybe they laid down a plan then. Novak's job was to find Tate and get the artifact while Sonntag's job was to genetically modify food. I wonder what was Gunneson's?"
"He appeared for you Caffrey. Didn't he tell you that you were one of them?"
"Yeah, and then he appeared again when we played that signal fragment. Maybe Lucas was right about Gunneson appearing because of us and not because he was drew to the signal."
"And Park's job was to make a machine to play the signal using our own technology..." J.T. finished. "But what does this have to do with Pena and Manning?"
"Sanford's job was to spread the signal using his sperm. Captain Manning's job is what? And what is Pena's job as well?" Here she came to a block.
"We can't determine what his next move is yet, can we?" Baylock asked.
Caffrey nodded, "There's no way we can tell what the Captain is up to. There's too many possibilities, but whatever it is, it's bad. There's too much opportunity here in D.C. for something to go wrong. I think we're missing a piece of the puzzle at the moment..." She sighed.
J.T. grunted, "You're right on that one. Also, you really need to talk to Ramsey. He's getting worse. He even blew me off when I confronted him about his gambling habits. Thank you for arranging for me to talk to him, though. Remember, Caffrey, don't mention the issue of the baby to Whitaker. We want to be able to fight another day, alright?"
She nodded, "I'll go and talk to Ramsey th-"
Suddenly, lights started flashing everywhere and a loud siren wailed throughout the building. She swirled, looking out into the corridor to see what was happening. The guards all seemed to be running towards the elevators and stairwells.
"Hold on a minute!" One of them stopped and saluted. "What's going on?"
He flashed his radio. "We managed to get a report from a fallen guard; three infectees are on the loose with guns. They escaped on their way for routine blood work. Now, if you would pardon me, madam." the guard rushed off, shouting something into his radio.
Molly and J.T. shared a look that could mean only one thing; 'Oh, shit.'
Janklow and Novack meanwhile were wrecking havoc in the sterile hallways of the Threshold building. Somehow the restraints hadn't been enough to hold them and the guards were pushovers. Karyn Reynolds came up behind them and cast a questioning towards their direction..
"It's clear that way. No one will be coming from the back." she said as she wiped her bloody hands on her orange jumpsuit.
Novak nodded. "Come, we have to accomplish the mission."
"Yes, the mission..." Janklow thought back. He turned and shot out a window. He knelt beside the shiny shards of glass and picked up one. "Will this work?"
Novak nodded, "Yes, that will work perfectly. Let me see it..." The cadet passed the glass to Novak who pressed it against his own arm. The blood dripped, contrasting sharply against the clear glass. "Yes, this will do."
The man started forward again. He paused for a moment and turned towards the other two. "Come." They followed, whipping out the guns they had collected on the way and laying waste the hall ahead of them. Bullets were flying everywhere. They soon encountered guards...
The sound of gunfire was echoing throughout the building. The infectees seemed to have superhuman abilities when it came to aiming the guns; nothing stood in their way. They killed several more guards before making their way further down the hall.
"Where is the target?" Karyn thought to Novak.
Janklow and Novak both shrugged. Novak thought " We haven't seen him yet."
Janklow nodded, confirming Novak's thought. Suddenly he paused and pointed towards a man hiding in a lab. "The agent, he's there." Novak lifted his gun and fired straight into the pane of glass. Janklow joined him. The man hidden behind the glass went down without a fight.
"He's not dead is he?" Karyn thought as Novak rushed to the man's side.
"No he isn't. The target has been acquired." he thought as he stabbed the man's chest with the shard. He stood back up just in time to notice Cavennaugh and his security team finally make it. They took aim and fired. For a brief period, Novak remember no more...
Cavennaugh rushed over to the downed man and checked for a pulse. "HE'S STILL HERE!" But then he noticed the single bloody shard of glass sticking up from the man's chest, "Oh shit... Get Fenway!"
Fenway shook his head, "Cavennaugh, there just isn't any way to save him. I've never seen the mutation infect someone this quickly..."
The agent was laying on the table convulsing. Occasionally he would stop seizing; during those times though, he was passed out. And there was nothing that Fenway could do for the poor man.
"Why is it infecting my man so quickly!" Cavennaugh demanded.
Fenway turned and glared at him. "I don't know, and I won't know till more tests are run. Okay? Come back later."
Fenway was expecting a bad response from Cavennaugh, but not one that as bad as he got. He was slammed against the wall. Sean was holding his neck and snarling. "I don't want it later, I want to know now!"
"Put me down!" growled Fenway.
Cavennaugh was about to say something when Caffrey walked in the door. "SEAN! Put Nigel down!"
Fenway was dropped to the ground, he stood rubbing his neck. "What's wrong with you!"
"Nothing!" growled Cavennaugh as he brushed past Molly and stalked out the door.
Molly cast a surprised look over her shoulder. "Are you alright?"
"Yes, and I still miss NASA..." Fenway muttered. "I won't have any results for awhile; the medicine put him into more seizures so I had to take him off of it."
She nodded. "I see. Do you have any theories why it's infecting him so quickly?"
Fenway went over to his patient, taking a syringe out of his coat and putting it into an IV. "Not really, but its possible its because of his genes. He's offering no real resistance other then the seizures, of course, to the mutation. Its almost like they chose the person who it would infect the quickest." He shook his head. "And Cavennaugh is a bit upset about losing some of his men."
"That's understandable, but not that upset. Are you sure he's okay?"
Fenway chuckled to himself. "That's not the first time I've been slammed against a wall. It won't be last either; that's a normal reaction for someone who cares for his soldiers."
Caffrey gave him the same look she had given Cavennaugh. "Okay."
Fenway sighed before he told the actual truth "He's blaming himself."
"Why would he be doing that? He's not responsible for the breakout!"
"It's one of those things you won't understand. Anything else, Caffrey?"
"You're playing the blame game too, aren't you?"
He glared at her and sighed before turning back around and looking at the new infectee. "I've never seen the infection take this quickly. Its like they found the perfect man to infect."
"You're avoiding the subject, but good point. What are you suggesting?" she asked.
"I think they can tell who will be genetically more susceptible to the mutation. That's just a theory though."
She nodded, "It makes sense, though. What's the point of taking the time to infect someone if their body is just going to reject it..."
"Exactly." he muttered.
"This means the game has just gotten a whole lot more dangerous..." she sighed, "Anyways I came to tell you that we're having a meeting in the meeting room in an hour."
He nodded. "Oh, they killed twelve guards in total. Its like they were specifically targeting this agent."
She nodded. "I'll try and talk to Cavennaugh." Molly said before she left the med-lab. She turned before she walked out the door. "And its not anyone's fault, especially yours. I don't like going down to the holding cells, either."
Fenway hung his head. Once more it seemed his fault. How many people were going to die just because of his screw-ups and his cowardice...?
An hour later all of the red team were seated around the round table.
Ramsey and Lucas were muttering among themselves. Luckily enough they weren't in the building of the time of the escape attempt. Cavennaugh wasn't talking to anybody; he seemed to be taking it bad. Fenway was typing away on his laptop, trying to ignore the world around him. J.T. was trying to get his blood pressure down still, and Caffrey hadn't even showed up yet.
And here Ed Whitaker was, bored out of his mind and stuck in the company of three scientists, one muscle man, and a fellow bureaucrat he didn't even like. It was just great; part of Caffrey's plan had failed and she had the tenacity to be late to the meeting she set up herself.
Something about her irked the former senator, and he was just itching to change that plan of hers...
"Well!" he asked J.T. "Where's Caffrey!"
J.T. shrugged. "She'll be here soon. I believe she was pulling all of the files she needs for some presentation of hers."
Whitaker looked confused. "She has a plan for a breakout?"
"Yes, we have a facility in West Virginia. Its just been completed. We were planning on moving them there later this week anyways. The presentation is over something else, you'll see."
Whitaker sighed, sat back, and decided to wait for a few more minutes...
Molly walked into the room five minutes later with files loaded in her hands. She placed them on the table and inserted a disk into the main computer and picked up the remote.
"Why were you so late, Ms. Caffrey?" Whitaker demanded.
"Sorry, J.T. and I hit on an idea earlier. We need to run it by you guys first though."
"Aren't we going to discuss the breakout!" Lucas asked.
"As you already know we have a facility in West Virginia. We were going to move them later this week. I'll just have to push the schedule up to tomorrow."
Whitaker nodded. "How are you going to move them?"
"We already have an eighteen wheeler outfitted. Lucas, since they broke out of their restraints, I want them upgraded."
Pegg nodded, "I'll see what I can do tonight, but no guarantees."
Caffrey nodded. "The eighteen wheeler will have an armed escort. We've decided to take the routes out of the city of the least resistance." She pressed a button on the remote and a map popped on the screen with the route high lighted. "As you can see it's the least residential of the possible routes. We will begin tomorrow night a couple of hours after midnight. By that time we can clear the most likely areas that they could break out at, exc."
Whitaker nodded. "Good work Caffrey, we will be having a talk about your plan soon."
Molly's eyes barely narrowed, but she nodded back. "Gunneson and Mrs. Drennan will be staying here though, because of their conditions. Anything else on this subject?"
"But what about the new in-"
"How are we going to pull this one-"
"Only twenty four hours to build new res-"
"Are you sure about th-"
"West Virginia, in the middle of hickvil-"
"Is this such a good id-"
All six men seemed to speak up at once, causing Molly to hold up her hands. "I'll answer more of the questions later. We have something of upmost importance to deal with."
She aimed the remote at the computer again, bringing up a different file from her disk. "J.T. and I were thinking earlier today. We know the crewmen met before they split off across the country. We have reason now to think that maybe these weren't random ways to spread the infection. Maybe they're not just doing what they know how to do, but what they have been assigned to do as well."
Ramsey laughed. "Like a friggen alien homework assignment? Oh please, Caffrey! And just who would the dear ole' alien professor be, then?"
"I'm serious. I think they do have a plan. All the evidence seems to be pointing that way."
"If they have a plan, they would have to be communicating. No plan can work without communication." Whitaker said.
"They have been communicating, through their dreams." Cavennaugh said.
"How do you know that!" Ed asked.
"Because I was one of the people exposed to the tape, and I've had several dreams. All have been documented and submitted to Fenway if you want to read them. They are communicating, no doubt about it." snarled Cavennaugh.
Fenway nodded. "This way the problem of sending messages in ways that can be detected is bypassed. It makes perfect sense, don't you see?"
Whitaker sighed. "So that isn't a limitation for them, is it?"
"Anyway, let's outline what has happened with the infectees so far." Caffrey said as she brought up a new file with her remote.
"The Crew members that escaped from the U.S.S. Bighorn were Gunneson, Novak, Park, Sonntag, Sanford, Pena and Manning. I'm assuming each had a separate role to play. Gunneson's is unknown as much was not known about him. He was the only one to respond to the signal being played, and is currently in a comatose state. Novak's job was to locate the alien artifact; he is also is custody. Park's was to find a way to broadcast the signal using human technology; he's dead. Sonntag's job was to genetically modify food to pass on the infection, using his blood as the agent to pass the mutation; he's dead. Sanford's job was to pass the mutation by means of sperm, using fertility clinics in order to infect rich women.
"We have no idea where Pena is; it isn't safe to assume anything about him. And on to Captain Manning, Manning is a former Navy Seal, and is experienced in gathering Naval Intelligence. We have reason to believe he is in the neighborhood. Is there any conjecture to what they are planning?" Molly finally asked.
There was silence for a moment before Lucas spoke up. "Since they communicate using dreams, wouldn't those that were infected afterwards have some part in the plan?"
They all froze. "That would make sense. Janklow tried to infect people by putting the signal in an e-mail and sending it..." muttered Cavennaugh.
"Karyn tried to infect people by playing the signal at a Miami Rave..." Fenway continued.
"Tollman and that plane full of political people were heading to Mexico..." Ramsey said.
"Sonntag's mother was protecting him, as well as Agent Hargrove." Caffrey said.
"Christine Polchek and Libby Drennan were sending money to Mexico. Then they would send money here..." J.T. mused... "What does this all mean?"
"Only time can tell..." Molly said.
Lucas groaned. For some reason he'd been having a headache for a couple of days. Making new restraints was only making it worse...
Ramsey came in the door with a beer in hand. "Want a cold one?"
"No, I got to get this done by tomorrow..." Lucas groaned, grabbing his head. "Man, I wish this headache would go away!"
"Maybe you should see Fenway about that," said Ramsey who took another sip from the beer.
Lucas glared at the dwarf. "I don't think so. I hate being poked and prodded. Plus, Fenway has a tendency of making headaches worse."
"Sarcasm can do that to you."
"Can't you go away while I try to get this done?"
Ramsey laughed. "Fine, I'll just find someone else to bother."
"Cavennaugh?" He looked up, seeing Molly.
"Yeah, Molly. What do you want?"
"What's wrong with you? You could have seriously hurt Fenway!"
He turned and glared at her. "Since when are you concerned about the doc? He can take of himself, and so can I." He turned and stalked out of the room.
Molly just stared at where he had stood; what was wrong with Cavennaugh?
Sometimes he thought the world was only made out of the conflagrations of his own mind. The only other dreams he had were those of the glass forest kind. Yet, even then the old dreams returned...
He could never get away from his past. He could never forget that day so long ago.
He was running again; "CYNTHIA! Hurry!"
She was running slightly behind him, her dark hair flowing in the wind, a worried expression on her face. "The others!"
"Don't worry about the-" and then nothing, as he felt pain ripping across his chest...
And then he woke.
The next day: 3:05 am
"Janklow, check. Reynolds, check. Novak, check. Sanford, check. Hargrave, check. Agent Harper, check. All prisoners are onboard and ready for transport, Caffrey."
"Thank you Cavennaugh," she spoke into her headset, looking a bit upset. "Are you going to stay with the escort?"
"Yes, I will be going to West Virginia with them. I will maintain radio silence other than to report position of convoy every fifteen minutes. Permission to begin transport?"
"We're entering the International Bridge Tunnel, on 19th street."
Caffrey traced it on her map. "You guys are making good time already. Just how fast are you taking that big rig Cavennaugh?"
"Fast enough, Caffrey. Its going to take about seven hours to get to the location, so I want to get it over with. Radio silence, out."
Molly sighed... She just had a bad feeling about this.
Cavennaugh was in the lead hummer. He leaned back trying to relax. It was hard to try to be comfortable, but he needed to be.
Suddenly he heard the sound he had feared to hear; rapid fire. Automatic weapons, most likely submachine guns. He jumped up, grabbing out his own gun. "STOP THE VEHICLE!"
The hummer came to a stop and his men filed out, getting into position. He shouted into his headset; "Caffrey, we're under fire! They took out our vehicle from the back. Repeat, we're being ambushed!"
Caffrey swirled around and looked at Whitaker. "The prisoners are breaking free!"
"WHAT! Where at?"
"The International Bridge Tunnel. I don't know how they even knew..."
"That doesn't matter at the moment! MAKE sure they don't get away; tell Cavennaugh that!"
Molly could hear shots firing and shouts of men as they went down. "Cavennaugh, can you hear me! SEAN!"
"MOLLY, not right now!" Sean ripped the headset off his head, throwing it down as he took aim and fired at Novak.
"How did they get out!" One of Cavennaugh's men shouted at him. He shrugged.
"I don't have any idea, now shoot! Ask questions later!" Cavennaugh eye's widened when he finally saw a shadowy figure come into sight. "My god... Is that Manning!"
Hayes turned and looked, "Yeah, that's your captain you've been looking for!"
Hayes shouldn't have turned around... A bullet whizzed by and imbedding itself into his shoulder. The agents eyes widened momentarily before they closed...
"HAYES!" It was just like last time... The images crossed his mind, the blood, the screams... Everything falling apart, and nothing to make it better again... All Cavennaugh saw was red as he started firing.
Sean dropped his weapon, and picked up the headset. "Molly?"
"Cavennaugh! What happened!" he heard her voice come through the radio sounding small and insignificant. He closed his eyes and sighed.
"It was Manning... He ambushed us. He looked like he had a couple of hired mercenaries... I need a clean up crew here, quick."
"Did they escape?"
"Harper and Janklow did. Reynolds and Sanford were captured."
"What about Novak and Hargrove?"
"Dead. I had to shoot them, sorry Molly. There was a few fatalities on our side too. Agent Hayes was killed. Carl was shot as well, but he's fine for now. Sergeant Adams and I were the only ones not hurt."
"Alright, I'm sending in a team. Stay put Cavennaugh."
"We must recapture both Harper and Janklow. Harper knows too much, and so does that cadet!"
"Yes, I know, Whitaker. We have men scouring the entire area. Cavennaugh said they got away by car, so they may already be out of here!"
"How did those restraints fail!" the former senator yelled at her.
"I don't know! Lucas said-" she froze.
"He said wha-" then he realized it as well.
"Are you saying that he may be-?"
She nodded... "None of us three have been tested lately for the mutation. We haven't had time, I'll get Fenway on it right now." Whitaker grabbed her arm.
"I'll get Fenway, you stay here. You were exposed to the same tape. I'm taking no chances with this." He stalked out of the room and motioned for the guards to keep an eye on her. He returned with the doctor a few minutes later.
Fenway was looking ruffled to say the least. His normally spiky hair was in disarray, and he looked like he hadn't shaved yet. He stifled a yawn. "Was it really necessary to wake me up!"
"Just take her blood. Alright, doctor?"
"Fine, fine... Caffrey, arm please." He took out a syringe that he always seemed to have and took a sample. "You get to round up the other two, Whitaker. I'm going to the lab to check this." He left the room.
Whitaker turned and looked at her. "Until that result is back, I'm taking charge of Threshold." He left the room as well, and motioned for the guards to watch her once more.
She rested her head on the table; why did things seem to be escalating all of a sudden? "Can you give me some privacy?"
The guards nodded, leaving and shutting the door. She knew they were on the other side, but weren't watching her either. So it was safe to break down, which was exactly what she did.
She slipped off her dark jacket, and pulled down her hair. Letting her face rest against the cool table, she just let the tears flow down her face like an endless river...
Fenway was in his lab testing the three samples. He noticed something strange in one of them. "What?" he muttered to himself, "Lucas, no..."
He looked up from his microscope and removed his glasses from between his teeth. "CARPENTER!"
The browned haired lab tech came running, "What is it Dr. Fenway?"
"Get Caffrey, or Whitaker, Baylock for all I care. Just get whomever the hell is in charge at the moment."
"Okay, I'll go do that then." she said giving him a strange look as she left.
Whitaker came into the lab a few minutes later. "What is it?"
"Caffrey and Cavennaugh are cleared of the infection. Pegg isn't." Fenway motioned for the ex-senator to take a peek in the microscope. "As you can see the mutation has started to take over his cells. If you look closely, you'll see that the red blood cells have grew spikes like viruses do. That's one sign of the mutation. The DNA test is about to be through."
Whitaker looked into the microscope adjusting the sites to peer down at the alien cells. He looked up when he heard a printer start. "Is that the results?"
Fenway nodded, grabbing the papers. "He's turning. Its just started to happen too. If we get him here soon enough..."
"You might be able to save him?" Whitaker asked.
"Yes, Lucas is a prime candidate for the medicine I'm developing. I believe he's asleep in his lab at the moment."
Whitaker nodded. "Thank you doctor..." as he left the room.
Lucas was woke up by Caffrey and Whitaker. "Will you please come with us?" she asked him.
"Uh, yeah. What's wrong Dr. Caffrey?" he said as he yawned.
"Uhh... Nothing, Fenway just wanted to talk to you about something."
He noticed she was avoiding his eyes, like she was guilty of something. "Okay." He got up and followed them to the med-lab. The young man also noticed that there was guards posted everywhere along the halls. "You've stepped up security?"
"Yes, we had to Lucas." she seemed even more uncomfortable.
When he reached the lab, Fenway looked like he'd been through hell. "Lucas, I'd like you sit down please."
Lucas sat down, looking worried. "What's wrong Fenway?"
"If you'll excuse me..." Whitaker left the room quickly.
"Lucas, I'm sorry that I have to be the one that tells you this. The mutation has spread; you've tested positive for the triple helix."
"What! That's impossible! You said I was fine! Right? Did Ramsey put you up to this?"
Fenway shook his head. "I'm sorry, Lucas, this is for real. Now please lay back."
Lucas did as Fenway told him. "Why are you putting the restraints on me?"
"I'm so sorry, Lucas." Fenway sounded like he was about to break up.
"I'm going to have to confine you to the med-lab." Molly finally said.
Something clinched in Lucas' heart; they weren't kidding. It was really happening to him... "I'm going to be alright aren't I?"
Fenway avoided looking at him for a moment, then took a deep breath and looked him in the eye. "I don't know, Lucas. I just don't know. But I'll sure as hell try to fix this."
"We need to find the escapees." Molly was now speaking to the remaining members of the Red Team.
"Yeah, I got agents scouring Washington D.C. for them. Doesn't mean that they're going to find them." Cavennaugh muttered. "Its bad enough they infected Carl; hell it just sucks. He was one of my best men..."
"Yeah, but what about Lucas! Shouldn't we be more concerned about him!" demanded Ramsey.
"We are concerned, Ramsey. We just can't concentrate solely on him with two crewman on the loose and Janklow and Harper with them."
"We've got another thing to worry about as well. If Lucas is fully infected, whose going to replace him"
"DON'T EVEN SAY THAT!" Ramsey yelled . "You guys talk like he's already gone and died!"
"Calm down Ramsey!" Cavennaugh growled.
"No! I'm not calming down on this one! He's our friend! And you guys seem to already have forgotten him! I'm going. I need some time alone!" Ramsey got up and left the table, brushing past Roberts on his way out, giving the MIT graduate a withering look.
"You called, Dr. Caffrey?"
"We need you to take Lucas' place for now. Can you do that?"
He nodded, sitting down.
"The strange thing about the whole ambush was that there seemed to be mercenaries..." muttered Cavennaugh.
The young man looked up, seeming slightly nervous. "How would an alien infectee get mercenaries?"
"I don't know. But he had them..."
Lucas was laying there, just staring at the ceiling. "I never thought this could happen to me, Fenway. Never thought it at all... You know its just a month before my wedding? I managed to rearrange everything, and move it all to here." He laughed. "Rachel even changed her dress choice. She found a Vera Wang dress she liked better, and Molly found some money in the budget and gave it to me. I was going to invite you guys."
"I know, Lucas. I know." Fenway was sitting there, holding a wet cloth to the young man's forehead. Hell, the kid was like a son to him. And here he was, dying...
He started to seize again. Fenway moved quickly and injected something into the IV. Lucas drifted into the dreamworld... Into a world with trees made of glass...
"They traced the bullets. They were fired from a couple of Socimi Type 821, and the guns that fired the bullets were traced to a particular few guns used in a robbery in Italy five years ago. They were confiscated and put into storage, where the authorities were going to get rid of them. However, they were stolen before the authorities could melt them down."
Molly nodded. "Is there anything else?"
Cavennaugh nodded. "I looked around. The only arms dealer I could find actually lives here in D.C. We could pay him a visit and see if he'll cough up anymore information."
She agreed. "Oh, and Cavennaugh? Is everything all right now?"
The man paused and turned; he came into her office and sat down. "Molly can we talk?"
She nodded in reply. "Is it about what's been bothering you lately?"
"Yeah... You remember that old scar I have?"
She remembered. "Yeah, Fenway was commenting on it when I came in to find out if we were all okay. Wasn't it right after we got back from the Bighorn?"
"Well, way back long ago, right after I got my first command... I've always been involved in this branch of the military, always in the dark waters. My first command, well, hell I lost it. All of my men, save one, were killed."
She sighed. "I figured it was something like that." She laid her hand on his arm. "Its alright, I understand."
He looked slightly uncomfortable for a moment before he got up. "I'll just be going to stir up some info from that dealer..."
Cavennaugh came back a few hours later. "I talked to the arms dealer. He told me a man dressed in a maintenance suit came to see him with large amounts of cash... Typically the amount was just under 9,000. Sound familiar? Except it wasn't Sanford, it was Pena."
"How do you know?"
"I showed him pictures. He was sort of uncooperative at first... But he loosened up a bit real quick."
Whitaker threw him a look. "You didn't do anything illegal did you!"
Cavennaugh shrugged. "That's the good thing about being in dark waters."
Molly shook her head. "Cavennaugh, can we keep the illegal activity down to a minimum please?"
He nodded. "Well, the man is supposed to make a drop off of more cash. I don't know where he's getting this batch of money from, but he's supposed to make it tonight. I say we stake out the place, and capture Pena."
Molly agreed and got up. "I'm coming with you."
"I'm not sure he was telling you the truth; he looks shady to me."
"Arms dealers are always shady, Caffrey, come on... Let's go into that house and wait."
She shook her head "I want to go into that one," she said, pointing at the house beside it.
"Suit yourself." Cavennaugh shrugged. He motioned for a couple of the men to follow her as he entered the other house.
"Will you guys tell Rachel I love her?"
"She knows, Lucas. You know that." said Fenway who was still sitting beside his patient. The doctor hadn't moved since Lucas had been there.
"Yeah, but I want to see her... I miss her." the young man croaked out.
Fenway nodded. "I'll ask Caffrey for you when she gets back."
The guys weren't far behind her as Molly moved in the house quietly, her gun held out before her. Pena was here, she just knew it... Cavennaugh was inspecting another house. She had decided to explore this one. For some reason, she knew she was right... Call it a gut feeling, or a hunch, or whatever. Molly knew he was here though; the arms dealer was lying. She pointed to the way upstairs and the two guards started up that way.
A moment or two later she heard movement to the left. She swung the gun forward quickly. "STOP, PENA!"
He froze and started in the muzzle of the gun. "Hello, Caffrey."
She didn't move as she stared into his eyes. "Don't make a move."
He just smiled before suddenly jumping at her. She tumbled as he collided with her. The gun was knocked from her hands, and he placed his hands on her throat. "Please, stop..." she breathed out.
"You're one of us, and you know it. Can't you tell? You'll soon join us, I know it. Just like your friend, Lucas. I won't kill you, I'll make you better." She kicked him, trying to get him off of her...
"I'm not one of you... I like being who I am now!" She heard a footstep. 'Oh no, please tell me that's not Manning!'
She closed her eyes, thinking it was all over... She heard a gun fire, and felt Pena fall over. Molly rolled off the floor and looked down... Pena was gone... She turned and stared at Cavennaugh, her mouth hanging open slightly. Her jacket was stained with the blood of the crewman.
"Come on Molly, let's get you that change of clothing."
Ramsey was drinking and drinking... More and more... He couldn't do this anymore. Lucas was his friend and he couldn't even look him in the eye; he wouldn't even set foot in the med-lab. He lifted the bottle and found it empty and grabbed another one, starting to chug it desperately.
He couldn't run from his problems, but he could forget them for awhile. He started to choke; it was to much. He started to retch; it was an awful feeling to fall asleep in a puddle of one's own vomit...
Roberts was walking quietly in the hall, trying to be inconspicious as possible. It wouldn't due to be seen at the moment, or to be noticed. So he walked quietly and strived to appear normal. He smiled at the guards as he walked past.
"Yeah, I'll talk to Ramsey for you, now let's get back on the subject of how you had this reaction." Fenway was talking to Lucas. "So have you changed your routine recently? Anything you've done different?"
"The only thing that's changed is Roberts being here, that's all I can think of."
Fenway looked down at his young patient. "Roberts? Did he bring you your food or anything?"
"Yeah, he brings me my coffee. Half-caff. you know, because you told me to lay off the caffeine."
Fenway got that look in his eyes. "Aw... Shit." he muttered as he rushed out the door. He grabbed one of the guards. "Come with me!"
"Roberts!" the young man turned to see Fenway with one of those guards.
"Yes, Dr. Fenway?" he said trying not to edge away from the older man.
"Get him." the guard made a grab for Roberts, whom dodged and started to run down the abandoned halls.
Fenway and the guard tore after him. The guard panted out, "Why exactly are we chasing him!"
"I think he was the one that put Lucas in the med-lab. Now catch him!"
Roberts ran directly into what felt like a brick wall; he looked up and saw Cavennaugh.
"Now what do we have here?" the large man asked. "Fenway why the hell are you actually getting exercise?" the young man tried to run at that moment. Sean just grabbed him by his collar.
"I think he's the one that made Lucas sick." Fenway managed to get out, "And I'm not out of shape..."
Cavennaugh rose a eyebrow out of the obviously lying doctor. "Put Lucas in the med-lab? Hmmm... OUCH!" he yelped and accidently let the man go when Roberts chopped down on him arm.
The young man tore down the hall, trying to get away.
"You just had to drop him, didn't you?" Fenway muttered, glaring at the soldier.
"He bit me! That little son of a bitch, he's gonna die..." Cavennaugh tore after him.
"I'm living in a circus." muttered Fenway.
The young man realized he couldn't get out; he stopped in his tracks and turned. "You can't stop the Apocrypha, and you never will!" he shouted before reaching into his pocket and taking something out.
"STOP him!" shouted Fenway, but no one was close enough.
Roberts swallowed the pill, and gagged before his eyes rolled into his head as he passed out... He managed one more word, "Apocrypha..."
Fenway was looking down at the dwarf whom was laying in his own puddle of barf. It sort of reminded him of his college days...
"Ramsey! Ramsey, for pity's sake wake up!" he nudged the younger man with his foot unwilling to touch the vomit.
"Uhh... What?" Ramsey groaned trying to sit up.
Fenway rolled his eyes and sat down away from the vomit. "We need to talk."
"I don't wanna hear any self-righteous bullshit about how drinking and gambling is bad for you. Go away Fenway..."
"Hey, are you listening to me?" the doctor poked him again. "Wake up, sit up, and get out of the puddle of your own vomit!"
Ramsey sat up and moved slightly. "Why haven't you left yet!"
"I'm not leaving I'm sitting here and we're going to have a nice long talk." Fenway smirked at him, "Okay?"
"No, its not okay. Aren't you supposed to be watching Lucas?"
"Lucas was the one that told me to come and hunt you down and drag you out of your own vomit. Now we're talking."
"No we're not." Ramsey tried to get up and stand, but he couldn't even do that so he settled just for sitting there. He glared at Fenway, "And since when have you became Caffrey's lap dog?"
Fenway made a face. "I haven't become anyone's 'lap dog', I've just realized she's right on a couple of things. But we're not here to talk about her are we?"
"You never go away do you? No wonder you've been divorced three times. Now dude, go away..." Ramsey started to look green. Fenway rolled his eyes once more.
"Example one, drinking too much induces vomiting when one wakes up..."
"So do you have any information on this Apocrypha he mentioned?" J.T. said, "And is Lucas going to make it?"
"We haven't been able to find any information on what he meant. He could have meant those books that some think belong in the Bible for all we know." Caffrey spoke up.
"I don't know yet if Lucas is going to be fine. I won't know for awhile... I might know by next week." Fenway said.
"How about Ramsey?" asked Cavennaugh, "Have you talked to him Fenway?"
Fenway nodded. "Yeah, I talked to him. He agreed to stop the drinking for awhile..."
The phone was ringing in Molly's ear.
She opened her eyes slightly and made a grab for it. "Yes? What is it?" she stifled a unseemly yawn and sat up.
It was Fenway. "Molly?"
She really sat up. "What's wrong!"
"There's been an outbreak, here in Washington D.C."
to be continued...