Must give lots of love to prncssgrl1881 who, if you all don't know already, has started a wonderful series of drawings based on this story. I can't believe she did it but I love how beautiful they are!!!! I must encourage all to go and check out all of her artwork!!!


"I did not faint," Kimiko insisted after another swing of water from her bottle.

"No you passed out," Rai insisted.

"No I didn't," Kimiko argued again, "I was awake the whole time."

"You probably have a concussion," Raimundo sighed and shook his head. "You are so," he started to add but Kimiko interrupted.

"So what?" she asked her tone warning.

Raimundo decided not to soft-pedal. "So unbelievably frustrating and stubborn," he told her.

"I'm overly tired and I knocked my head on a coffee table," Kimiko answered and tenderly touched the bump on the side of her head and tried to hide the wince from the overly observant Raimundo.

"You should go to a hospital," he insisted studying her out of the corner of his eye, the rest of his attention on the handcuffed and bound assassin he'd shoved into Kimiko's coat closet. The woman was glaring daggers at him but wasn't struggling. Raimundo guessed she was trying to work her way out of his cuffs but Raimundo was ready and waiting. He wanted to question the woman, but not in Kimiko's presence and he wasn't about to let her out of his sight. She'd collapsed into his arms no more than a half an hour ago after colliding with her coffee table in an attempt to distract the assassin.

She was damn lucky she hadn't been shot or broken her neck for that matter.

Raimundo had been able to get a clean shot on the hunter and then knock her out but that didn't justify Kimiko's actions any.

The shot was clean, straight through the shoulder and hardly life threatening, Raimundo was certain the woman, a professional killer her now recognized as a "ghost" named Katnappe, could endure worse. The bullet had been imbedded into the apartment floor and using the blade on his knife Raimundo had been able to dig it out much to Kimiko's relief. Apparently the apartment below had children and Kimiko had been concerned. After stemming the bleeding at Kimiko's urging Raimundo bound the woman, carelessly dropped her in the closet and then tended to Kimiko who had been correct. She'd never actually passed out but the hit to her head had been enough to cause her to fall into his arms.

Raimundo knew a concussion when he saw one and even though Kimiko's was minor it was still enough to cause him concern. But she was unfortunately right; there wasn't anything that could be done besides rest and ibuprofen. Knowing she wouldn't stay back he'd forced her onto the couch for the time being with a bottle of water and a bottle of Advil and made her promise to tell him if she felt any worse or sick.

"What next?" Kimiko asked changing subjects on Raimundo.

"I don't know," Raimundo said honestly. He was trying to keep a clear head but fatigue, hunger, and Kimiko were clouding his mind. "Any word from Clay or Jack?" he asked and Kimiko glanced at his inactive cell phone.

"No," she replied simply. They hadn't heard from anyone since Clay's text that he'd gotten Jack and taken Jermaine with him to navigate the city better and were currently on their way to Rockefeller Center in hopes of finding the final item. "You want a sandwich?" she asked suddenly, randomly and Raimundo glanced at her questioningly. "You have that hungry man look in your eye," she shrugged as she answered. "All men get it. I'll make you something though I have to warn you I'm not the greatest cook." Raimundo did know how you could mess up a sandwich but didn't press.

"You don't have to," he told her.

"I need to do something," she said standing from the couch and moved into the kitchen. "And food will help you think I bet," she ventured and set to work. Raimundo mumbled a thanks and went back to studying Katnappe. With Kimiko a safe distance away he decided to try speaking to her for a bit. After removing the gag Raimundo looked down at her.

"So you're the famous Katnappe," he said sinking down and balancing on the balls of his feet so he was more level with her. "I know a lot of people that would be real interested in talking to you."

The blonde didn't respond.

"So I know it's a stupid question but I'm pretty damn sure Wuya and the Heylin hired you but what I want to know is if a guy named Chase Young is also involved."

Again Katnappe was silent.

"That's fine," Raimundo told her, "but if you want to cut a deal you'll have to talk to me eventually."

"You and the rest of those bureau pigs have nothing on me," Katnappe finally said in a lofty voice.

"We have your M.O. connected to at least a dozen murders all over the world, probably more," Raimundo informed her. "It's more than enough to convince a jury of your peers." When she was silent Raimundo moved closer and whispered. "You and I both know that I've got ways of making you talk."

"And we both know that you won't do a damn thing with girly girl around," Katnappe hissed back.

"You'd be surprised," Raimundo said and then pulled the rolled bandana acting as a gag back up over her mouth and made sure it was tied securely. "When you feel like talking," Raimundo stood, "let me know."

"What are you doing?" Kimiko asked when Raimundo turned back around. She was holding a plate with a lopsided sandwich on it and a bag of chips in her other hand. At the sight of the food Raimundo's stomach gave an angry growl.

"Thanks," Raimundo said suddenly more than ravenous and eagerly took the plate and sank down on her couch and began to eat quickly. Kimiko dropped the chips beside him and then went back for a drink. When she came back with the sodas the sandwich was nearly gone and the chips already open.

"Caffeine," Kimiko explained handing over the soda. Raimundo nodded, his mouth full, and accepted the can. "Should we feed her?" Kimiko asked glancing over at Katnappe.

"No," Raimundo's answer was immediate and muffled due to the food in his mouth. Kimiko couldn't help but smile.

"I'm guessing you're hungry," she observed.

"More than I thought," he agreed. The sandwich was gone and he was working his way through the chips.

"You want another one?" Kimiko asked and when she saw his hesitation at imposing she added, "I was thinking of making one for myself."

"Thanks then," Raimundo nodded and looked over at his phone.

"Should we call them?" Kimiko asked from the kitchen.

"No, not yet," Raimundo reasoned.

"What about Amelia?" Kimiko asked.

"Omi's with her," Rai reasoned, "she'll be ok." He glanced up when she dropped off his and her sandwiches and then moved on. "Where are you going?" he asked standing nervously.

"To my room," she paused in the doorway and looked back at him. "Why?" Raimundo didn't immediately answer and Kimiko smiled. "I wanna change, check on my laptop, get some cleaning supplies," she motioned at the blood on the floor, "and find my back up phone."

"Back up?" Raimundo asked surprised.

"Tohomiko heiress remember?" she asked with a coy smile. Raimundo returned the smile and nodded and returned to his sandwich and glanced at Katnappe who was watching the two. Rai didn't like the way she was looking at them and glared at her. He had to figure out what to do with her, and soon. He knew he couldn't leave her alone and carting her along wherever he and Kimiko ended up wasn't an option.

Clay, he decided, would be the best option here. He'd have to have the cowboy meet them at Kimiko's apartment rather than Jack's and since Jermaine was with them he wouldn't need to worry about sending Kimiko downstairs alone to let them in. As Raimundo text the message to Clay he found he was still surprised with how protective of the girl he was and he hated how much she'd been through today. And it frightened him how hard he'd already fallen. The physical pull was amazing but for perhaps the first time in his life his attraction went beyond that. He thought of her changing just a few feet away and he almost groaned, feeling more like a hormonal teenager than a highly trained FBI agent. Kimiko had come back and was dipping a sponge into soapy water and trying to get the blood up before the floor was stained.

"I can do that," Rai said standing up.

"I got it, it isn't so bad," she assured him and Rai saw that she was right, it was almost gone already. Raimundo didn't move away though. He took in her change of clothes. The forest green t-shirt was simple but well fitting, one of the most basic things she owned, with a teasing v-neck and rose high to giving teasing views of her navel when she moved certain ways. She stood, showing off low rise jeans folded short over black boots, not exactly practical but still making Raimundo's chest tighten none the less. He was lucky that some of his practicality remained with him because he was able to remember to turn away as she looked at him so he wouldn't see the look on his face. Kimiko just gathered her supplies and moved back to her bathroom to put them away and didn't see Raimundo close and lock the door that held the assassin before wedging a kitchen chair under the handle. Kimiko wasn't aware he'd followed her into the bathroom until she saw him in the mirror and she only jumped slightly.

"You aren't scaring me as much anymore," she said and finished washing her hands as she added, "Not sure if that's good thing." She turned back to him as he continued to watch her from the doorway. "Do you want to clean up?" she asked remembering something had spilled on him earlier.

"Yeah," Raimundo nodded as she stepped forward.

"I bet Jermaine's got something that'll fit you," she told him and went to move past him but he hooked an arm around her and pushed her back to the open bathroom door.

"Those boots aren't exactly practical," he observed. One hand pushed under the loose bottom material of her shirt, settling on the bare flesh of the curve of her waist.

"No?" Kimiko asked softly and Raimundo raised an eyebrow wondering if she'd dressed so on purpose.

"No," he agreed as his face went serious again.

"I'll change then," she told him and put her hands on his shoulders to push him away but he remained firmly where he stood and Kimiko's hands didn't move away.

"You should," Raimundo agreed and the hand he'd been resting in a fist near her head moved and hooked gently around her neck and drew her to him. Their lips connected and both automatically moved to intensify it. Kimiko's hands locked behind his neck, tangling in his hair and the hand Raimundo had on her waist remained under her shirt but shifted to dip below the waist of her jeans and God help him he nearly lost all control when he felt the top band of her underwear, barest wisp of lace. To save himself his hand shifted upwards, splaying across her lower and jerked her body closer to his. He heard and felt Kimiko gasp at the action and he took that as in invitation to explore her mouth. Kimiko allowed this for a moment before slowly but firmly pulling back.

"We can't do this right now," she told him but her arms were tight around his neck and body still pressed closely to his. "I have an assassin in my hall closet and a death clock ticking off for me and my father."

"You shouldn't have worn that shirt then," Raimundo told her and kissed her again, "or those jeans," another kiss, "or those boots."

"What's wrong with this shirt? I like this shirt," Kimiko told him and tugged at the ends of his hair.

"I like it too," he agreed adamantly before kissing her again. "A lot," he mumbled against her lips before Kimiko drew back.

"I'll change the boots," she said finally unraveling her hands from around his neck and Raimundo reluctantly withdrew his arms and shook his head, slightly frustrated not with her, but the situation, once she was out of sight.

Had she dressed like that on purpose?

The combination of innocence and sexiness was killing him.

Running his fingers through his hair Raimundo tried to regain control of himself and had nearly achieved it when Kimiko reappeared with a pile of clothes in hand and tossed them towards him.

"You're a bit bigger than Jermaine but you'll probably be able to squeeze into at least one of those," Kimiko told him. "If you need new pants that might be an issue."

"Think I'm ok," Rai managed out. "Can I change in here?"

"Sure, I'm going to go eat my sandwich and then set up my phone," Kimiko told him and turned away without another word. Raimundo watched her go and realized it hadn't been her clothes it was simply her.

"Damn," Raimundo whispered and closed the door to quickly shower and change. When he came back out no more than ten minutes later he swept his eyes over Kimiko, focused on her sandwich and completely avoiding him. Raimundo strode past her, pulled out his gun and cracked the door. When Katnappe didn't immediately jump out and try to kill him he opened it wider and dragged the woman out. After double checking her bonds Raimundo shoved her back into the closet. He then turned his attention back to Kimiko who was still focused on her sandwich. Raimundo refused to allow her to be awkward with him after the stunt he was convinced she'd just pulled, though he wasn't very sure if it was a stunt or Kimiko's continued naivety of her power over him. With that in mind he collapsed onto the couch with her, their hips barely touching, arm slung across her shoulders.

"You're phone had a message on it," Kimiko told him and handed it to him. "Clay should be here soon," she said, "I hope you don't mind that I checked."

"Nope," Rai said simply and read the message as well.

"You look good in that," Kimiko said changing topics. "I bought it for Jermaine a while back but he never wore it, says it wasn't his style." Raimundo looked down at the predominately black shirt he wore. The cuff and collar were red and a yellow-gold dragon lined in red ran the length of his right sleeve. It wasn't something Raimundo would ever have bought for himself but like the way it looked now.

"I like it," Raimundo grinned at her. "Good taste." Kimiko blinked, a bit surprised at the comment for a moment before shaking her head at him.

"Laptop seems fine, I don't think it's been tampered with since when I left it earlier" she added nodding towards the computer on the table. "I haven't turned it on yet though so there really is no way to know just yet. I thought I should wait for Jack to try and figure everything out though."

"I bet you could handle it," Raimundo said grabbing a few chips.

"Better to have two people," Kimiko reasoned and then picked up a phone nearly identical to her first one and popped the back open. "Do you still have my SIM card?" she asked looking over her shoulder at him and it sent a curtain of black hair flying.

"I really like your hair," Rai answered apparently transfixed by the motion.

"Random," Kimiko said wrinkling her nose at him.

"It's nice and shinny," Rai went on leaning closer to her. "It looks almost blue in certain lights."

"Still random," Kimiko replied but her smile was soft and a blush was coloring her cheeks.

"Really pretty," Raimundo said simply and raised a hand to run his fingers through the hair. Kimiko remained still until Raimundo pressed even closer and finally Kimiko drew back.

"Not here," she whispered.

"I can surely find somewhere else with privacy."

"I'm sure you could," Kimiko said dryly turning her head away. Raimundo gave a sigh and then sat back as well, watching with disappointment as Kimiko tied her hair back in a simple ponytail on the back of her neck.

"Do you still have my SIM card?" she asked again but didn't look back this time.

"Yeah," Rai said shifting and pulling the wallet out of his back pocket. His phone buzzed so he picked it up to read the message and handed over his wallet without thinking. Kimiko took it and opened it up in search of what she was looking and paused when her fingers brushed along a foil package. With a disgusted sigh she moved on and found the card.

"Clay and the others are only about five minutes away," Rai said and noticed the look on her face. "What's wrong with you?" he asked bluntly so Kimiko replied in the same manner.

"You're kind of a playboy aren't you?" she asked without looking at him.

"Where'd that come from?" Raimundo asked surprised since she seemed perfectly fine with how he was acting just a few minutes earlier.

"Just a question," Kimiko shrugged but Raimundo heard a bit of bite in her voice. He looked at her oddly for a moment then at the wallet she'd tossed back onto the table and suppressed a groan.

"Kimiko listen," he started to say but was startled by her near scream of surprise when her phone suddenly rang. Kimiko jumped and nearly dropped it in surprise but quickly recovered, she hadn't been expecting it to ring as soon as she put in the SIM card and freshly charged battery. She looked at the screen and didn't recognize the number but instinctively answered before Raimundo could stop her.

"Hello?" Kimiko asked.

"Kimiko?" a familiar voice responded.

Kimiko shot up off the couch clutching the phone to her ear as she cried out.



God curse this city.

No, that just wasn't true, if he could navigate Tokyo then New York City should be a breeze.

But he was beyond frustrated at the moment. It had been a long time since he'd been able to locate Kimiko on his GPS, too long.

The whole time she'd been living in the city he had at least some idea where she was.

She never went anywhere without her cell phone and the fact that it had blipped off of his screen in the middle of nowhere Long Island had him worried. Not knowing what else to do and fearing she was lying in a ditch somewhere helpless he irrationally lost his cool and drove out to the last known coordinates. That was why he was more than a little frustrated that upon arriving in suburbia, USA and Kimiko's tracker, implanted secretly by her father in her SIM card, had 'blipped' back to life in the heart of the city. He'd felt ok in letting out a long string of curse words in the three languages he knew and hoping back into his jeep and taking off for Manhattan again.

He was able to calm himself as her drove, not let emotions get the better of him. Emotions were all fine and good but a person had to be in control of them when in situations such of this.

His mind went to Raimundo Pedrosa, Agent Raimundo Pedrosa.

He knew that the agent was more than capable of taking care of himself and Kimiko but that didn't mean that Kimiko still couldn't be hurt, targeted.

In fact he was convinced that was the case now, maybe had been all along. Why was Chase Young targeting Kimiko? He had ideas, none of which he liked and all of which were unfortunately possible.

Increasing his speed Kimiko's unseen protector made a decision. He could no longer stay in the shadows. Kimiko needed to be taken out of this game- now.


Raimundo pulled the phone away from Kimiko, silenced her with a hand over her mouth as she struggled against him and put the phone on speaker so both could hear. There was silence on the other end of the line as well and for a terrifying moment Kimiko was sure it had gone dead. Raimundo all but shoved Kimiko back to the couch, signaled for her to be silent and then talk as if he weren't there.

Glaring at Raimundo and silently promising that she'd hurt him later Kimiko turned her attention to the phone and moved closer to it.

"Dad?" she questioned again trying to keep the tremor from her voice. Raimundo put his hand over hers and gave it a squeeze. Kimiko didn't respond just kept her eyes trained on the phone. "Dad?" she asked again.

"Hello Kimiko," a new voice greeted.

"Chase," Kimiko rasped out and her free hand went to her mouth.

"Glad to know you haven't forgotten me," Chase said and Raimundo could practically see the cruel smile on his face. "And greetings of course to Agent Pedrosa," Chase added and Raimundo stiffened. No need to waste any time then.

"So you're the infamous Chase Young?" Raimundo asked and saw Kimiko stiffen and look at him.

"Take us off of speaker Kimiko," Chase Young said ignoring Raimundo.

"I don't think so," Raimundo said automatically.

"This is a private conversation," Chase Young said calmly.

"Between the three of us," Raimundo agreed and there was no give in his voice.

There was a heavy pause on the other end of the line.

"No," and then the line disconnected as Kimiko lunged at it.

"Chase! Chase!" she shouted into the cell but it was no use. Hanging it up in a reflexive move she turned her fiery glare on Raimundo. "You idiot!" she yelled angrily. Raimundo stood as well and tried to calm her.

"Kimiko I," he wasn't expecting the hit and stood stunned with his head turned away from the force of it.

"Your family is safe!" Kimiko shouted at him. "My father is still out there! How dare you do this!"

"Kimiko calm down," Raimundo said slowly trying to get her to calm down.

"I get to be as angry as I want," Kimiko snapped back, "he's my father and he's in danger. I can have a temper tantrum if I want."

"You're right," Raimundo agreed surprising her and she let it show on her face. "I'm sorry."

"Well you should be," Kimiko snapped recovering slightly from the shock of him agreeing. "What were you thinking?"

"He'll call back Kimiko," Raimundo said confidently.

"I don't care," she all but spat. "He's got my father." She suddenly looked teary. "I've never heard my dad sound like that before," Kimiko said with a shake in her voice. "He sounded so weak." She broke off and let Raimundo pull her to him and get lost in his comforting hold. Pressing her face into his shoulder she suppressed a sob and then pushed herself back from him.

"I just need a second," she said sounding distracted. "Wash my face," she explained in a distracted voice and Raimundo let her push her way past him. His eyes were sympathetic as they followed her out of the room and then turned hard as they fell on the assassin. Raimundo strode toward her, crossing the room quickly and grabbing the woman up off the floor of the closet.

"Time to talk."


Kimiko refused to let herself have a good cry just yet but that didn't keep a few tears from falling down her cheeks as soon as she shut the bathroom door behind her. Walking to the sink she turned the warm water on and waited for it to heat, an unfortunate tick of the building. Her mind was a blank, an odd sensation really and she was so preoccupied by it that when her phone rang again she had to stifle a cry of surprise.

Glancing at the screen she saw it was the same number as before and knew Chase Young was calling back, just to for her. For a moment Kimiko considered going to get Raimundo but quickly changed her mind.

"Chase," she answered as coolly as possible.

"You're alone?"

"Yes, now let me speak to my father," Kimik demanded keeping her voice low.

"In time you can see him face to face," Chase replied simply.

"What are you doing Chase? Why are you doing this?" Kimiko asked.

"The only thing you need to know right now is that your father's life is in your hands," Chase told her coolly. "The clock is ticking Kimiko. You have only a few hours before your father is dead. And then someone comes for you."

"Killing us both will get you nothing," Kimiko observed.

"I don't want either of you dead Kimiko," Chase told her plainly.

Kimiko let out a snort. "You have a funny way of showing it," Kimiko answered. "What do you want? I've played your game all day- what is that about?"

"Don't play dumb, I know you've talked with Spicer."

"And I know that's not you," Kimiko shot back. "Something else is going on. It's the Heylin isn't it? What do they have to do with it?"

"You ask a lot of questions Kimiko," Chase avoided answering her questions directly. "Why don't we meet in person, then I could explain and the three of us, you, me, and your father, could have a nice little reunion. Then you could go home with your father and I could borrow your laptop."

"So you do want it," Kimiko mused. "When the hunter showed up here I guessed that, otherwise she would have been following us all day, along with your thugs."

"This whole day was a bother," Chase said sounding lofty and annoyed. "It can all end quickly if you bring your laptop to me."

"What about the game?" Kimiko asked.

"Forget about that annoyance," Chase snapped before his voice softened. "Send Pedrosa to finish that task and come meet me."

"I don't do anything without Raimundo," Kimiko answered immediately.

"I understand that you two have bonded somehow," he said 'bonded' like the word sickened him, "but now this only concerns you." Kimiko didn't respond for many long moments.

"How can I believe that me handing over my computer will end this?" Kimiko asked.

"If you can't trust me who can you trust?" Chase asked. "We grew up together Kimiko, what happened with my father and what happened today doesn't change the fact that we were friends on a different level than others. I loved you father more than my own; I couldn't stand the shame associated with him after it all. I had to go, put some distance between myself and the company. I couldn't stand the look of shame in your father's eyes, or yours. Even now I can't stand it. I hope that by you bringing me the laptop I can end this all peacefully."

"End this peacefully? You want that? You started this whole sick thing," Kimiko accused.

"Things are very complicated," Chase informed her. "I can do nothing to assure your and your father's safety without your laptop as leverage. Send Pedrosa on the last errand, keep the others watching you distracted and come and find me." He had to repeat the address twice while she used an eyebrow pencil to write on the back of a tissue box.

"So I'll see you then?" Chase asked casually after she confirmed the address.

"I want to talk to my father," Kimiko insisted.

"All in good time Kimiko, all in good time," Chase said and disconnected. Kimko listened to the line go dead and tried not to feel dishearten. Noise from the living room filtered into the bathroom and she realized that Jermaine must have brought Jack and Clay back to the apartment and sure enough a moment later Raimundo knocked gently on the door to let her know that.

"I'll be out in a minute," she called back and Raimundo seemed to accept that. Glancing up at the now steamed clouded mirror Kimiko cleared a spot in it so she could see herself before shutting off the hot water and changing to cold. After splashing her face a few times Kimiko dried off and grimaced at her clearer reflection. Pulling her makeup from the cabinet Kimiko did a five minute job, and then brushed her hair back into her earlier two ponytails. All in all, considering what she'd been through that day she didn't think she looked that bad and now felt she had some semblance of control back.

The mirror was still slightly steamy when she gave herself a final look.

"Ok," she said trying to sound confident but the image looking back at her didn't comply.


Kimiko wasn't in the mood for a boys' party and that was the sight that greeted her when she walked back toward the living. She stopped at the doorway and leaned against it as she studied the four gathered around the coffee table and bit back a laugh at the picture the motley group made made. Under different circumstances it would have been extremely funny but now, Kimiko was too exhausted to give it much more than a smile. Raimundo was the first to notice her and looked up at her with a soft smile. The other noticed and turned to greet her and again Raimundo felt jealousy stir at the long looks Kimiko got from the three other men in the room. He knew Jack was crazy over her but the fact that her roommate still looked at her in such a way was a bother. And the normally bashful Clay looked like he'd never seen a woman before whenever he saw her.

If Kimiko noticed she didn't let it show as she walked in, glancing at the closet door.

"What did she do now?" Kimiko asked.

"Nothing," Rai replied gruffly. His interrogation had barely started when the other three showed up so the hunter had had a stay of execution. Clay stood when Kimiko reached the end of the couch and offered her his seat but Kimiko waved it off and instead collected her laptop.

"Did you guys find what you were looking for?" Kimiko asked directing her question to Jermaine who nodded and placed a small box on the table.

"We decided not to open it until we got back here," he explained and Kimiko looked disinterested.

"Go for it," she muttered and then turned her back on the men.

"Where are you going?" Jack asked.

"I just need fifteen minutes to myself," Kimiko explained. Raimundo opened his mouth to protest but then Kimiko said the four words that made all men cringe no matter what variation they were in. "It's a female issue."

None of the four men responded, just as she guessed they wouldn't and Kimiko picked up her bag as she headed towards her bedroom. Raimundo watched her walk away and hid his frown from the others as they began to discuss where they needed to take the item they'd found. After five minutes Raimundo became too jittery to wait any longer. He quietly excused himself, discreetly slipped Kimiko's PDA off the table and went to her bedroom. When he found it empty, window to the fire escape open he bit back a litany of curses and rushed to it, sticking his head out to see if he could still spot her.

Kimiko was sitting on the edge of the railing to the right of the widow watching her window expectantly. When she saw his head sticking out a smug smile graced her lips.

"It's about time."


A half an hour later they were in one of their earlier hotel rooms, and after Kimiko had disabled the tracker in laptop they were confident they weren't being followed. Kimiko told Raimundo about the talk she'd had with Chase and Raimundo had already come up with a plan to keep everyone safe along with keeping the laptop out of Chase Young's hands. They'd just finished going over the plan again, heads bent close as they sat together on the hotel bed when Kimiko's phone rang again. It was Chase's number so Kimiko answered it on speaker.

"I'm not amused Kimiko," Chase told her before she'd even said 'hello'.

"And why's that?" Kimiko asked.

"Because I know that Pedrosa is with you, that's why," Chase all but growled.

"Deal with it," Kimiko snapped letter her temper show and Raimundo sent her a smile. "He's in this Chase, that's your fault, not mine."

"Actually I'm trying to do you a favor," Chase said coolly. "Wuya wants Pedrosa dead. You bring him with you and there is nothing I can do to keep him safe."

"Nothing you can do or rather you will do nothing?" Kimiko snapped back.

Chase avoided answering. "I'm trying to make this as simple as possible for you," Chase said levelly. "Just give me the laptop and this will be all over."

"I don't believe you for a second," Kimiko answered before Raimundo had a chance to.

"You know my terms Kimiko," Chase answered, "show up with Pedrosa and your father is dead."

"That doesn't sound very appealing," Raimundo added in sarcastically. "Now before you go getting cranky," Raimundo said in an authoritative tone, "answer me one question and I'll consider your request. Why do you want Kimiko's laptop?"

"That's none of your concern. I'm going to be generous but if Kimiko isn't here in front of me in an hour I won't be able to save her father," Chase warned and the line went dead. Raimundo glanced over at Kimiko when the call ended and although she was putting on a strong front he noticed how pale she seemed and was immediately concerned.

"Hey," he said in a gentle but commanding voice that caught her attention. Raimundo motioned to her, "come here."

Kimiko didn't hesitate and moved towards him, resisting the urge to simply throw herself at him. Instead she waited, toe to toe with him and looked up into his eyes. Raimundo reached out and gently traced the side of her face, Kimiko automatically leaned into his touch and forgot all of her promises from earlier in the day that if anything were to happen between it would be later, much later. Now, she didn't care, she knew his touch was, if nothing else, wonderfully comforting and she needed that now.

"It's going to be ok," Raimundo told her sounding confident and more. There was a fierce protectiveness to everything that was Raimundo Pedrosa and despite being overprotected her whole life Kimiko had never felt a need for it today. Before she could stop herself or reason that she was doing this for all the wrong reasons Kimiko rose on the tips of her toes and planted her mouth against Raimundo's. He must have been surprised by the action because it took him a moment to react but when did finally move it was as forcefully as Kimiko's kiss demanded. Crushing her body to his, Raimundo locked his arms around the petite girl's waist and hauled her as close as possible. Kimiko showed her compliance by arching her body into his and locked her arms around his neck in a tight hold.

The kiss depended rapidly and Raimundo wanted to take his time tasting every inch of her but Kimiko seem to go wild in his arms and wouldn't allow it. Instead she tore her mouth from his and began to kiss the strong line of his jaw and down his neck, kissing the spot of his rapidly increasing pulse point.

"Kim," Raimundo groaned and tightened his hold on her. Kimiko responded by kissing back up his neck and finding his lips again. Her hands fisted in his shirt and tugged at him and willing them to the single king sized bed at their left. Instead Raimundo turned them to the right and pinned Kimiko against the wall with his body. The close contact was borderline painful for Raimundo and he pulled back only to have Kimiko follow him. Gently Raimundo pinned her back to the wall and tried to keep her at arms length.

"Kimiko we can't," he told her, trying to sound serious but it came out as more of a croak. She blinked at him in surprise and Raimundo shut his eyes momentarily, trying to erase the image of her- hair and clothes mused, eyes glassy, lips beginning to swell from his attention.

"I want to Rai, please," Kimiko said easily knocking his hands away and moved back to him. Her argument was sound in Raimundo's clouded mind and he wanted to oblige her but something stronger than his sex drive was speaking to him and he knew no matter how much he wanted to, he couldn't pull her down to the bed and do as they both obviously wished- no matter how painful it was to deny her.

Suppressing his sigh Raimundo gently pushed her back again and held her a bit more firmly away from him.

"We can't Kimiko," he repeated. "God I want to but we can't."

"But," Kimiko started to protest but Raimundo silenced her with his mouth. The kiss was soft, sensual, and made her give an uncharacteristic soft, lofty sigh as her eyes flutter shut as she returned the gentle motion of the kiss. Raimundo pulled away slowly but remained close to her, not even realizing he had, and rested his forehead against hers.

"You're going through a lot Kimiko," he told her. "You've made choices that person shouldn't have to and we still have a hell of a lot ahead of us left to deal with."

"All the more reason to have now," Kimiko whispered. "Who knows what's going to happen?"

"I can promise you this," Raimundo said automatically, "you will get through this. I'm going to make sure of that no matter what. Got me?" Kimiko nodded and they were close enough still that their lips touched. Raimundo grinned. "You probably shouldn't have done that."

"Then I shouldn't do this either," Kimiko whispered and kissed him again. Raimundo would have agreed with her if he wasn't so preoccupied with kissing her back. It took a moment but his senses finally came back to him and he broke the kiss.

"Kimiko," his tone was warning but his hold was still gentle and caressing.

"Why not Rai?" Kimiko asked looking up at him.

"Because you know we shouldn't," he exasperated.

"But," she protested again and this time Raimundo was smart enough to silence her with his hand rather than his mouth.

"Believe me Kimiko," he whispered his eyes serious, steady, and hooded with passion. His voice was husky and low when he spoke again. "And I want to, and we will but not here, not now." He saw the conflict in her eyes and was slightly disappoint that she still wasn't pleading with him but knew that she was being sensible now and was realizing that an hour of distraction and comfort from him so intimately wasn't the right way to go about it. But he also wanted to make sure that didn't lessen his wants any.

"Besides," he whispered ducking his head so his lips rested against the shell of her ear and the words ghosted against her skin making her shudder. "What I've got planned for you is going to take longer than an hour." He felt her stiffen and was arrogantly satisfied for a reason he couldn't define but he knew he loved her reaction. When he pulled back and looked into her eyes he found her looking at him skeptically.

"Yes?" he asked with a raised eyebrow.

"I don't know if I should be intrigued or horrified," she replied, "or maybe a bit of both."

"How about expectant?" Raimundo grinned teasingly and kissed her again. "This isn't over Kimiko," he whispered against her lips, "not over by a long shot."


Sorry you guys, its been way too long since I updated. I need someone to kick my ass and make me keep my promise to myself to have this finished by Easter, don't see that happening

Between resumes, my original fiction, and life in general I've been so bad about my fanfiction!!! I'm sorry all, I swear I'll be better!!!

On a different note I need some feedback on "The Promise" otherwise I'm considering ending it, sorry to sound harsh but I have to know that people are interested in what I'm writing- its gives me inspiration to keep it going. So tell me what you think please

As always please review and hugs to all!!!!