AN: An update at last. So sorry it took so long, but I haven't forgotten. Hopefully, the next update will be coming soon, since we're closing in on the end of the story. All will be revealed. Let me know about any thoughts you have on my crazy long story. If you read it in a while, recall that Logan had escaped after being kidnapped and he and Max had reunited on a truck bound for south Seattle. The world thinks EO may be dead since a body in a wheelchair was found in an alley with the EO signature red, white and blue painted around it, but we know he's escaped. That doesn't even begin to cover the convoluted plot that this story has become, but, hey, I've had a heck of time writing it. late night.
South Seattle, about 30 minutes outside the city.
An abandoned apartment building
It had been almost 72 hours since Logan's truck had first been hi-jacked.
Nearly 56 hours since the news had declared Eyes Only dead.
48 hours ago since Logan had paddled away from the waterfront
36 hours ago, he had almost shot Max as she tried to rescue him
That also meant that it had been just over 72 hours since he had had a real meal, although the sandwich Max had brought him had taken the edge off his hunger. Of course, the sandwich had done nothing to satisfy the hunger which had first awakened when he first saw Max. And now that he had awoken somewhat refreshed, the feeling caught like a flame and threatened to burst into a full-sized bonfire.
"Hey, Max." Logan came closer and caught her hand. She squeezed his hand, then gently pried her hand loose. She took the plastic bag that Logan handed her and began putting the empty water bottles into it. They were getting ready to leave the abandoned building.
"Your plan stinks, Logan." Max said as she stuffed Logan's discarded wet clothes into another bag.
"If you've got any better ideas, I'd be happy to hear them." Logan answered as he handed Max the last of their things.
"Logan, I went over the plan with Alec like you asked. He actually had some useful intel from his little surveillance mission, but….still. This plan has about a five percent chance of working even if everything's perfect – and that's counting on luck and I do not like to count on luck"
"I know, Max," Logan grinned, "As someone used to say, there's no such thing as luck. Success depends on having a well-thought-out plan that's executed with precision.'"
The sun was going down, giving an orange glow to Logan's sandy hair. He sat tilted onto the two back wheels of his borrowed wheelchair, one hand on the railing at the top of the front steps.
Max shoved the plastic bag into his lap and pushed past him to go down the stairs.
"I told you what I thought about your plan, so don't try to talk me into liking it," Max said, leaning on the railing at the foot of the stairs, her back to Logan. "Why don't you just let Alec and I…"
"Well, that's just great," Logan's voice turned steely. "After all these years, you really don't think that I can pull this off."
"Don't be an idiot, Logan." Max's eyes flashed back at him. "You weren't the one watching the non-stop news coverage on the death of Eyes Only on every station in Seattle."
"Please, Max. You know I'm fine." Logan started down the steps.
Instead of answering, Max walked over to the grey van parked at the curb and swung herself up into the driver's seat.
Logan bumped down the last step and made his way over to the passenger side of the van. Max sat with her hands resting on the steering wheel.
"You trust me, don't you, Max?"
Max silently closed the door and started the engine, "Let's just get this bitch over with."
78th precinct – Seattle PD
Assistant Police Chief Matt Sung stopped at the front desk to check in with his assistant. His mind was still reeling from the news of the Eyes Only shooting. How could he not have seen that Logan Cale, his friend, had been Eyes Only all along? It was because Eyes Only had always seemed to be larger-than-life. Logan had just seemed to be a regular guy, trying to do his part. Now, Matt realized that Logan had worked very hard to give him the impression that he was a regular guy. How could he have been so stupid?
Matt tried to piece together everything that had happened that day. The ME had brought the body to the precinct morgue, but Matt had been avoiding the trip down to the basement all day, dreading that the body might be his old friend Logan's body. Then, he had received a phone call from someone named Alec, who claimed to have known Logan and his friend, Max. This guy Alec said that he wanted to get a look at the body as soon as possible, preferably before the autopsy results came out. He didn't say how he had gotten Matt's name, but he had mentioned both Logan and Max. Maybe the two had finally gotten together. Matt hoped so. Even before he had met Max, Matt had sensed that she had meant a lot to his friend. Matt had been helping out Eyes Only for years, but Logan had never asked for any personal favors until the day Max was detained in Langford prison. After Logan's accident, he had seemed to lose his confident swagger with the opposite sex, but Matt had seen the sparks flying between Max and Logan even if Logan had seemed blind to them.
Lost in his own thoughts, Matt was having trouble paying attention to his assistant, Jean.
"Chief Sung, did you hear me?" Jean said. "They moved the body from that Eyes Only shooting. It isn't in the building anymore."
"Are you sure they moved it, Jean?" Matt paused outside the door to his office, still talking to Jean..
"Yes, sir. It's definitely gone," she answered.
"It can't be, Jean. I'm sure the Chief wanted the body in our morgue. Why else would he ask me to skip the local coroner and send it here? He wants the chain of evidence as short as possible...There's no way he would transfer it somewhere else," Matt waited again for Jean as she flipped through some papers.
"Well, Sir. The techs said they had papers ordering a transfer to another facility. The body left at 14:00. Someone signed the order, but I can't make out the signature on this fax…I can find out if you like."
"Let me know if you find out anything else? Otherwise, I've got a body to…"
"…catch." Matt's last words died away as he entered his office and the door swung closed behind him.
A man had stepped out from behind the bookcase in his office.
"Chief Sung? My name is Alec. I called you before. I'm a friend of Max…and Logan Cale. Sorry to just drop in, but I'm wondering if you might be up for an old-fashioned Eyes Only mission. . ."
In his lavishly furnished office on the other side of town, Mr. Snow stood up slowly and made his way over to the screen mounted on the wall. Snow was congratulating himself for installing bugging devices and cameras at the 22nd precinct, the department that held jurisdiction over most of Snow's neighborhood. It was how he stayed one step ahead of the police.
Snow squinted at the image on the screen.
"Look at that, boss," Snow's henchman stared at the screen too. "There's finally something happening. A grey van is pulling up and someone's getting out of it."
The two men peered at the image on the flat panel.
Snow tapped his fingers on the desk impatiently. "I told you that getting that body moved to our local morgue would come in handy. Even if there's no autopsy report yet…at least we've got enough guys on the take at that station that we can keep the place bugged. We've got cameras outside and inside. Maybe we'll see something useful yet. Maybe we'll find out what the autopsy reports going to say before it comes out.
Mr. Snow stared at the screen. "Can you tell who's getting out of the van?"
"It's too dark. Someone's pushing some sort of laundry cart into the building. I'm switching the feed to the interior cameras."
The flat panel screen went dark.
"Hey, what happened to the feed?" Snow barked.
"The lights are still off in inside the autopsy room, Mr. Snow. We'll be able to see when they turn them on, boss."
The two voices, one male and one female, crackled over the speaker on Snow's desk. The screen was still dark. The voices inside the morgue were soft, but they came over the bugging devices clearly.
The female voice started, "So, admit it. Impersonating Logan Cale wasn't a bad idea, was it?"
The man's voice came through clearly now, "It was brilliant. Cale's an ass anyway. Serves him right." The two voices continued to come in clearly over the feed.
Suddenly, the flat screen went from black to grey as someone switched on a dim light in the autopsy room. Snow could clearly see the two people in the room.
The man, whose voice they had heard, leaned casually against one of the counters, opening and closing a knife he held in his hands. A woman, dressed in the laundry service jumpsuit, her dark wavy hair pulled back neatly, moved along the wall with her back to the camera, opening each metal door in the autopsy suite and peering inside. , with her back to the camera.
Across town, Mr. Snow leaned back in his chair.
"Ah, now we're getting somewhere. Turn up the volume on those mikes. I want to hear every word those clowns say. That'll teach 'em. I've got the sound and picture too. What more can a man ask for?" Snow air settled down in front of the screen to enjoy the show, taking a swig from his drink.
Suddenly, he slammed the glass onto the table, shattering it.
"Son of a bitch! Who the hell is that?"
Snow stared at the man on the screen, recognizing the face in the dim light.
"You were supposed to take care of Cale! If he's not Cale, then who is? Who the hell did you shoot in that alley anyway?"
"And why isn't that guy in a wheelchair?"
No wheelchair. He was wearing a baseball cap, pulled low, and he wasn't wearing glasses either, but even in the dim light, the face and the sandy hair were unmistakable. It was the same man Vann had questioned in the boathouse. The same man Snow's men had gunned down in the alley.
Logan Cale. Or who they thought to be Logan Cale.
"As far as I'm concerned, Cale can go down for Eyes Only," the sandy-haired man's voice came through clearly. "Back in the day, Cale Industries got fat on the backs of the Seattle public and that Logan Cale was the worst. Never seemed to have worked a day in his life."
The woman continued to look through the bodies in storage. She spoke again, "Is that why you picked him to impersonate? Guess it's unlucky for him. Too bad you'll have to go back under the knife. His face suits you."
"I was only borrowing it anyway," the man answered. "Good thing Cale was such hermit. No photographs of him in years. Not since he ended up in the wheelchair. The docs did a pretty good job on my face, don't you think. It's close match, huh?"
From where he stood against the counter, the man pretended to aim a knife throw at the far wall. He thought better of it and snapped the knife closed again, continuing, "And when we take the body, they'll never be able to prove one way or another who it was."
The woman shone a flashlight onto one of the bodies. "I found the right body. I'll take the light end. You take his shoulders," the woman continued. "Shove that case out of the way, will you?"
Across town, stared at the scroon. Someone had pushed a metal case in front of the camera and the screen went dark again, but Snow could still the voices clearly.
Snow's henchman shifted his attention to another computer screen that showed the outside feed.
"Boss, another car's pulling up. Looks like a Crown Vic. No uniforms, but it looks like a couple of cops are entering the building."
The screen from the autopsy feed was still dark, but Snow and his man could still hear the audio. They leaned in to pick up every word.
A new voice rang out.
"Police! Back away from the body and get your hands where I can see them! I said back away, both of you."
Shouts and gunfire echoed over the speakers in Snow's office.
"Chief Sung here! Requesting backup at the morgue on Grossmont. Send a bus too. 66th and Grossmont, side entrance."
One last shot rang out.
The speaker went silent as the transmission ended. The screen was still dark and Snow stared at his own livid expression, reflected in its smooth surface.
"That Eyes Only played me the whole time."
Inside the autopsy room, Max examined the spot on the wall where Mr. Snow's surveillance camera had been before Alec's well-aimed bullet had blasted it into oblivion.
"Good shot. I guess you had to do it the hard way." Max turned around to face the new arrivals.
"Only one camera, right, Max? Did you find any other ones?" Alec stepped into the middle of the room.
"No, Alec. That was the only one. You were…right." Max added, "About this afternoon, I…"
Alec holstered his gun and shrugged, "No time for that Max, we gotta go."
Matt stood in the doorway, weapon still drawn.
Logan eyed his old friend, still rooted to his spot leaning against the counter.
"Look, Matt. I'm so sorry. Those years ago…I didn't know what else to do." Logan began.
Matt said nothing. He glanced down at Logan's feet as he stood leaning against the counter and raised an eyebrow.
"Oh, this?" Logan nodded toward his feet. "It's an illusion I assure you."
"Okay, no time for chatting. We've got to get going. Call it in, Chief Sung." Alec waved them on impatiently.
Matt nodded and spoke into his com link, "We're at the 22nd precinct on Grossmont. Correction on the bus. Only bodies here, no live ones."
Logan relaxed his death grip on the countertop as Max slid an arm around his waist. She pushed the laundry cart closer and held it still while Logan shifted his weight forward and grabbed its edge. He hoisted his himself up onto the edge of cart. Wordlessly, Max helped him to lift his legs, encased in the heavy braces up and over the edge. Shifting his weight back, he unlocked his braces and folded his long legs in front of him.
"Back in the cart. Only this time, I'll have a dead body next to me." Logan gestured to the body still lying inside the cold storage.
"Hey, this was your plan. Besides, it'll only be about five minutes," Max answered.
Quickly, Alec and Max wrapped the body of Tim Young, Eyes Only informant, now inadvertent Eyes Only impersonator, placing it next to Logan in the laundry cart. Finally, Logan stripped off his jacket and cap and tossed them to Alec, who put them on. As Max and Alec started to push the laundry cart towards the door, Logan ducked under some loose laundry. Four minutes had passed since Matt and Alec had stormed the building. Matt turned his attention back to the crackling com link.
The others left the building. Three alive, one long dead.
"Mr. Snow, someone's coming out of the building. It's that woman and Cale … or whatever his real name is. They're still pushing that laundry cart again. What do you think they're doing?"
Snow stared incredulously at the monitor.
"They're stealing my body is what they're doing! They're stealing my only link to Eyes Only. And if the guy doing the stealing is impersonating Logan Cale, then who the hell did you shoot in the alley? Tell your man to get in there and stop them!"
"I can't, sir. There're too many cops around. We'd get caught for sure!"
Max and Alec pushed the laundry cart hard, banging past the loading dock doors and down the ramp toward the van. She heard sirens in the distance as she shoved the cart the last few feet up the ramp, into the back of the van. Climbing into the driver's seat and cranking the ignition, she looked up at the rearview mirror to see Logan's face.
Sitting up in the laundry cart, he grinned at her.
"How'd we do?"