Title: Four of Hearts
Stepping out of the elevator Jess was very surprised to see Colin standing in front of her.
"Colin? What are you doing here? I thought you were deep undercover. . ."
But instead of answering Colin was suddenly moving away from her. As he got farther away guns began to appear, all of them aimed at Colin.
A hand on her shoulder brought Jess out of her vision.
"Jess? You okay?" asked Nicole.
"I. . . yeah. Vision," she explained.
"But we don't have a case right now," Nicole noted, a bit confused.
"It was Colin. He was moving away from me, and the farther away he got the more guns appeared, pointing at him."
"You think he's in trouble?"
Before Jess could answer Pollock stepped out of his office and called to them.
A moment later they were in his office facing him.
"I've just gotten off the phone with Agent McNeal's supervisor, Special Agent Harland. McNeal has missed his last two check ins. They now consider him to be missing. Normally the DOJ would handle this themselves, but Harland owes me several favors." He paused and looked at Jess. "He now owes me one less favor. Do you know why that is Agent Mastriani?"
"Because I now owe you that favor."
"Very good, Agent. Now go find your boyfriend. Harland is expecting you. Dismissed."
Half an hour later they were shown into the office of Special Agent Jared Harland.
"What assignment was Agent McNeal working on?" Nicole began.
"He was working with the Russian mob. Specifically the Gorshov Family." He saw the curious looks on their faces, and continued. "The Russian mob makes a point of working with everyone. McNeal is posing as IRA."
"When did he disappear?"
"He missed a check in yesterday. Today another agent reported that McNeal and Alexander Barishnakov are both missing. Alex was the one McNeal first made contact with. We don't know if McNeal's cover is blown, and Barishnakov is guarding him; or if a rival gang may have taken them both. In that case McNeal's cover could still be intact."
They talked for several more minutes, then left. Their first stop was Colin's apartment.
Nicole raised an eyebrow when Jess let them in with a key. "You have a key to his place?"
"Yeah. There was never a chance to give it back before he went undercover. Nothing looks out of place," Jess noted, looking around.
"No obvious signs of a struggle," Nicole agreed. "So he probably wasn't taken from here. If another guy is missing, why wasn't he in your vision earlier?" Her fear was that it meant Barishnakov wasn't missing, but holding Colin captive.
"I have to be able to connect to someone to have a vision. I have a connection to Colin. I don't have one to Alexander. . .yet."
Seeing a paper by the phone, Nicole picked it up. It had the name Rachel, and a phone number, written in a woman's handwriting. "I have something," she said, pulling out her own cell.
"Antonio. I have a phone number I need you to run for me," she told him, and read the number.
Jess moved closer and saw the name and handwriting.
"I'll call you back in a few minutes," he said, before hanging up.
Nicole looked back at her partner. "Jess, it doesn't mean anything. It might be a contact of his."
"Or it might be his new girlfriend," Jess said, forcing herself to admit that possibility.
"You still love him, don't you?"
"Yeah, I do. I've tried dating other guys. I really have. But I always end up comparing them to Colin. . . "
"And they always end up the loser."
Jess nodded, and they continued searching the apartment.
Once again Colin was surrounded by guns aimed at him. But this time he wasn't alone. Another young man stood beside him. He was a little taller than Colin, with dark hair and eyes. On the man's shirt, just above his heart, were letters.
"Raya" called the man. He was ignoring the guns aimed at him and looking around, as if searching for someone. "Raya," he called again.
The sounds of Nicole's phone ringing pulled Jess from her vision.
"It's Antionio. I ran that number. It belongs to a Rachel Gorshov. Daughter of Vladimir Gorshov."
"A Russian mobster."
"A Russian mob boss. Very powerful. The DOJ has been after him for years. I have an address for you."
Before they left Jess wrote down the letters she'd seen on a piece of paper, so that she wouldn't forget them. She also described her latest vision to Nicole.
"We're dealing with the Russian mob. Maybe those letters are Russian," Nicole suggested.
"That's what I was thinking," agreed Jess.
Half an hour later Nicole and Jess knocked on the apartment door.
Jealousy stabbed through Jess as she saw the beautiful young woman who opened the door. She had long dark brown hair, hazel eyes and flawless skin.
"Yes. Who are you?"
"Agent Nicole Scott. FBI. My partner Jess Mastriani."
"If you're looking for my father, he isn't here."
Jess held out a picture of Colin. "We aren't looking for your father. We're looking for him."
Rachel's eyes went wide. "Declan?"
"Please, come in. Has something happened to Declan?" Rachel asked, obviously worried.
Seeing the other woman's concern for Colin caused Jess to feel another stab of jealousy. "Have you seen him recently?" she asked as they sat down.
"No. Father sent him on a . . . business trip with Alex."
"Alex, is he a little taller than Col. . .Declan? Dark hair, brown eyes." Jess asked, describing the man she'd seen in her vision.
"Yes, that's Alex."
She pulled out the paper she'd written the letters on. "Do these letters mean anything to you? Are they Russian?"
"Yes. That's my name in Russian. Actually, they are the diminutive form of my name. My nickname. Only those close to me call me that."
"Does Alex call you Raya?" Jess asked since he'd had the name on his shirt, even though she really wanted to ask if Colin used that nickname.
"Yes. Did something happen to Alex and Declan? My father said he didn't know how long they would be gone, only that I shouldn't worry."
"But you are worried," Nicole said, making a statement, rather than a question.
"Yes. About both of them."
"Both of them?" Jess asked, unable to hide her concern.
The pieces fell together for Rachel, and she met Jess' eyes. "You come looking for Declan, worried about him. And he often talked to me about the woman he was with before he joined us. A woman he still loved. . . still missed. That woman he loved, and had to leave to join us, it was you, wasn't it?"
Seeing that Jess was about to deny it, she continued. "I see my answer in your eyes. You worry that Declan forgot you. That he and I are together. I do care about him, and think he cares about me. But not the way you fear. I've always wanted a brother. With Declan I found one. He helped Alex and I."
"You and Alex?" Nicole asked.
"Yes. We love each other, but my father would not approve. But father would be happy if I was with Declan. It would strengthen his ties to the IRA. Declan and I would tell my father that we were spending time together, but I would really be with Alex, not Declan."
As Jess processed this new information, Nicole asked another question. "What would your father do if he found out what you three had been doing?"
Her eyes went wide, with fear and realization. "He would be very angry. He loves me, and would never hurt me. . . but, Declan and Alex. . . He would think they had. . . turned on him. . . betrayed him."
"Do you know where he would hold them? Where he might be keeping them?"
"No. He would never tell me about the details of his business."
Jess actually felt relieved. The vision now made sense. Rachel's name over Alex's heart. He and Colin both with guns pointed at them. They were on the right track now, she felt sure of it. Colin's cover hadn't been blown, and they knew who had him.