Disclaimer: If I had a time machine I would go back and kidnap the entire show. Sadly it's not even on DVD, so I own nothing but a couple of movies and a few books I bought off e-bay.

A/n: This scene jumped into my head when I read the challenge. Thanks to cattylizzie for the beta. Written for muncle challenge # 54 - Necessary Lies

II

The fact that he was chained to a pipe in the middle of a cavernous room wasn't at all unusual. The ticking bomb, large and complex enough to take out half the satrap, was a little less common. Thoughtful people that Thrush were, they had turned it to face him so that he could watch the countdown to his death. Currently he had just over three minutes to live.

The two-tone beep of his communicator told him that for some reason it hadn't been removed while he was unconscious. More than the bomb he found that fact disconcerting. The pen beeped again. It wasn't easy but he managed to squirm and twist enough to make the pen fall from his pocket and land in one of his hands.

"Kuryakin," he said, knowing whose voice to expect before they spoke.

"Illya, I've accomplished my goal. Let me know where you are so I can meet up with you." Napoleon sounded relaxed. From the tone of his voice there were no Thrush agents in his part of the complex. Solo's luck struck again.

Illya looked at the glowing red digits on the bomb. Two and a half minutes now. He might be able to get free of the chains in that amount of time. Doubtful, but not impossible. If Napoleon knew the situation, though, and tried to arrange one of his daring rescues he would only arrive in time for the detonation. Illya couldn't take that risk.

"I also am done with my task. I'm heading for the entrance right now. Meet me outside, 100 yards north of the building." That would keep his partner clear of the blast radius. It would also give Illya a goal to work towards if he did make it out.

"Is something wrong? You sound a little odd."

Illya cursed his partner's perceptiveness. Aside from the emotion he was trying not to allow in his voice there was the fact that his hand and mouth were farther apart then usual due to the chains. He was sure his voice sounded hollow and distorted.

There were a million things Illya wanted to say. He wanted to tell Napoleon to run as fast as he could. He wanted to give his location so that he would be rescued. He wanted to tell his partner to live a good life, and not to mourn too deeply if he didn't make it. He wanted to ask the man never to forget him. He wanted to say thank you, or I'm sorry, or I love you.

"Possibly a problem with my communicator," he lied. "I will check it when we get back."

"Alright, partner mine. I'll see you outside in a few minutes." The pen went silent and Illya let it fall to the floor. He would need both of his hands if he had any hope of freeing himself.

One minute fifty-eight, one minute fifty-seven, fifty-six, five, four, three...