Disclaimer--not mine, don't own them, only doing this for fun.

Lost and Found Filler--Part 2

By Ermintrude

Part 2

Lee was awake—on the couch on the dark. Something had awakened him. He pulled his weapon and noiselessly moved through the house. He heard a muffled voice in the guest room—he slowly opened the door and saw it was Eva on the phone.

They moved back into the living room—continuing their conversation. Then she dropped the bombshell.

"I have thought of you so often in the last two years." Eva looked sadly at Lee.

"Oh?" Lee was still off balance.

"Not without guilt. Angelo was in prison most of that time."

"Eva…" He didn't like where this was leading.

"No, no." She forged ahead. "The truth is Lee, I have made a mistake. I admire Angelo, I respect Angelo and in that sense I do love him. But if I am to stay with him it would only be out of…"

Lee interrupted her, "If you were to stay with him?"

She temporized, "Well, I would never leave him until I saw him safe and happy. I may never leave him. But I want you to know, in case it is never to be said, that I have loved you for all of those two years since I last saw you."

Lee was feeling desperate, "Billy's right. I shouldn't be involved in this. I just shouldn't."

She was hoping for some other reply. "Is that all you have to say?" She sounded anguished.

"I'll have myself taken off the case tomorrow."

She was begging now, "Lee please! We may never see each other again. Did you ever love me? If you had told me then, things might be so different now. How do you feel?"

Lee couldn't say the words. So instead he pulled her close and kissed her—long and deeply. Soon hands roamed and things looked to be getting out of control. But some small voice in the back of Lee's head was warning him. 'She's married—her husband is your friend—he's right here in the house—Amanda's not sure about her…'

He gently stepped back and looked Eva in the eyes. "Eva, this isn't right."

"But Lee, we were lovers before—nothing has changed." She moved toward him—but he held her at a distance.

"Yes it has changed. You're married. To Angelo."

"But—Lee—Angelo is sweet and kind but—I don't love him like I love you." She moved closer to Lee, trying to draw his lips to hers again.

He stepped back and let her go. "Eva, it just isn't right. You made your choice over two years ago. And until you and Angelo are finished…"

She interrupted him, "When that happens…"

He interrupted her, "If that happens—then maybe we can go back to being together." He paused and looked away from her desperate eyes. "But for now—no." He shook his head, "I can't do that to Angelo, to you."

She sounded hurt, "Have my looks changed that much since I was in prison?"

He looked back at her. "Eva, you know you look great. You've always looked great."

She was pleading, "Well then, please Lee—I need to feel your arms around me. I need you."

He gently shook his head. He moved to guide her to sit at one end of the couch. He released her, and moved to sit at the opposite end. "Eva, you know this is for the best. Eventually you'll see it too, and thank me in the end."

Her eyes filled with tears. "I see—this is for my own good?"

His voice was gentle, "It's best for everyone. This way we can both look Angelo in the eye without guilt or remorse."

She turned away, "Perhaps you can—it was because of my urging that he eventually ended up in prison. If I hadn't persuaded him to take the offer from Moscow…"

"Hey, don't beat yourself up over that. You couldn't know. You just did what you thought best at the time."

She looked unconvinced, "Perhaps. But I had another reason for choosing Moscow over the other offers."

"What was that?"

She looked guilty, "I knew it would be a clean break—a new life without the people around us—without you." She could not meet his eye.

He was incredulous, "Without me?"

She spoke slowly, as if she was reluctant to tell him. "Even then I must have had doubts—or maybe I just wanted to have a chance to devote myself totally to Angelo. If you were around, I would always be reminded of what might have been…"

"Eva, you just did what you thought was best at the time." Then he spoke more sternly. "Besides, it's done. You can't change the past. So don't dwell on it. 'What if' isn't a particularly useful line of thought. It just gets you bogged down in guilt and recrimination." He spoke the last as if to himself.

"You must have hated me. I married your rival after all."

"I didn't think of Angelo as a rival. I'll admit I was surprised when you told me you were engaged. I didn't know you two were that serious…"

"You each knew I was seeing the other." She paused in thought. "I didn't know he was that serious until he proposed. I was surprised—and flattered. He is a very important man in his field—well-respected. His work is highly regarded all over the world." She smiled to herself, "And he is handsome and very romantic…"

Lee saw her feelings clearly, "You do love him."

She nodded shyly, "Yes, in my own way." She then amended her confession, "But after two years in Russia—the prison—the visits—then getting arrested—being imprisoned myself—that's a big test of any marriage. Maybe I didn't love him enough in the first place. Or maybe I loved you more and I just didn't realize it until things got bad and I had too much time to think about my past and the choices I made and the chances I lost…"

He shook his head, "Eva, stop!"

Her eyes filled with tears again, "I'm sorry, Lee. It's all a bit overwhelming. I got here a little over two days ago. Since then I've been questioned—politely to be sure—but questioned nonetheless. And now I'm here … with Angelo … and you. I never expected to see you again. And now here we are, sitting together in the middle of the night—talking…" She moved toward him again.

He backed up until he was sitting on the arm of the couch. She stopped and moved back.

"Yeah," He ran his hand through his hair, "talking…" She shivered. He was instantly concerned, "Hey, are you cold?"

"Yes, a little. May I borrow your sweater?" She reached over and caressed the garment.

"Sure, here." He handed over his sweater, and she put it on, and drew it closely around her. He was reminded of how she felt when he wrapped his arms around her. 'It's just a sweater. She's just cold. Don't make anything more of it than it is.'

She took note of him and turned thoughtful, "What have the last two years been like for you, Lee?"

He resumed his seat at his end of the couch. He looked down. So many memories—so much had happened. Eric—first as a partner—then dead—way too early—killed in his place. He shook his head to clear the bad memories. "Oh, just working," he said too lightly, "just doing the job."

"Is that all you have to say for the last two years? Just working? Is there anyone special in your life? Are you seeing anyone?"

He was embarrassed, "Ah—I get around—but nobody special."

Eva looked amused, "Not Amanda? She seems to care for you."

He was shocked—he thought swiftly, 'Amanda, care for me? She was really upset at my funeral, but she got over that pretty quickly when I returned from the dead.' He remembered how awful he felt when he realized just how affected she had been at his faked death. But Amanda was an emotional person, she felt everything deeply. 'Except she's always watching out for me, making sure I'm OK, and trying to get me to eat and rest…' He shook his head, 'Keep your mind on the job, just don't get distracted, you have to deal with Eva at the moment, you don't have time to think about Amanda…' He shook his head again and replied, "Amanda? She's a … colleague. We work together from time to time—but we don't date. She has a boyfriend—some weather guy. Dan or Don or something…"

Eva nodded. "I see." She took another tack, "So—have you traveled—been anywhere interesting?"

He was dismissive, "Here and there. Nowhere special."

She was frustrated, "Lee, it's me. We used to talk about so much. You told me how your parents died and how you grew up all over the world on air bases with your uncle. You even told me what you did for a living. Why won't you talk to me now?"

His thoughts whirled, 'Amanda doesn't trust her—she thinks something's not right here…' His natural reticence won out, "Eva, I'm not used to talking about myself."

"What do you talk about on your dates then?" she inquired.

He smiled, "Mostly I let my dates do the talking."

"Is that all they do?" Eva asked coyly.

He smiled broadly, "I get no complaints." He stated proudly. Then he realized who he was talking to, and ducked his head.

Eva nodded. "I see. So you "date" many women but are close to none."

Lee was suddenly defensive, "I like things that way—it's my life." Then he backed down. "Yeah well—that's how things have worked out for me. But you! You and Angelo have a whole new life ahead of you. Once you're debriefed, you can move wherever you want. Have you thought about that? Where would you like to live?"

She seemed to shift mental gears before she replied. "Oh well, I like the mountains—and your country has so many different mountains."

"Yeah, the Appalachians are great—but the Rockies are spectacular. Each has its charms, I guess."

They talked about the U.S. and other safe topics for several more hours. Lee felt a nagging something as they talked—all he could fix on was that Amanda didn't feel right about Eva…

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The morning after Angelo's disappearance and the KGB breakin, Lee was feeling definitely out of his depth, which was unfamiliar territory for him. 'Angelo left—before the KGB showed up—why? What happened before that to spook him? Could he have come out and seen me with Eva? Did he hear us talking? Did he see what we did? If he heard her talking about how she didn't love him anymore… She said she thought he was going into a depression. If he found out Eva didn't love him—could he be suicidal? He said he 'lost his mind' when they told him Eva was dead. He is still quite fragile… Dammit! Billy was right! I know I should have asked off this assignment. Now I'm probably responsible for Angelo's disappearance. How could I be so stupid? Letting her carry on like that. At least nothing physical happened, we just kissed—that might've really sent him over the edge.'

Amanda noticed Lee was preoccupied—and she figured it had something to do with Eva. She noticed Eva wearing Lee's sweater, and it rankled. The woman was acting like she owned Lee. Something definitely wasn't right here. Amanda had watched Eva and Angelo the night before. Angelo was definitely delighted to see his wife. His eyes followed her everywhere she went. Even when she was out of the room, he looked expectantly for her. Angelo was definitely in love.

Eva was not. Oh, she did and said all the right things—in a general way—but there was no magic—her eyes followed Lee as much as they followed Angelo. Granted, Eva only watched Lee when he was not watching her—but watch Lee she did. Even sometimes when Angelo was in the room with her. Maybe she still had a thing for Lee—but she was married to Angelo. It wasn't right. And it would hurt Angelo terribly if she left him. Or was Eva just trying to have a fling with Lee before resettling with Angelo? Whatever it was—it just didn't add up.

Amanda tried to share her apprehensions with Lee—she mentioned the lipstick and bath oil beads—she knew better than to talk about eyes and potential infidelity. Lee was so in love with Eva he probably wouldn't hear any of that. But Eva interrupted and convinced Lee to trust her. Amanda was not happy about that—but until she had more concrete proof—there was little more she could say or do.

So instead Amanda set her mind to finding Angelo—where could he have gone? She thought she knew why—something Eva said or did made him not trust her anymore. He must really be hurting. She had to find him and help him. And protect Lee. She was glad she had removed the bullets from Eva's gun the day before. Guns in the house were just too dangerous. Amanda knew she felt safer knowing the only loaded gun in the house belonged to Lee. She trusted Lee. She definitely did not trust Eva.

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As Lee drove around DC with Eva, he thought about Amanda's comments about Eva's cosmetics in prison. And Billy's questioning Eva's 3am phone call to Milan. Something didn't add up here. But then he spotted the tail—and his mind became preoccupied with that problem. As long as they followed him, he figured they hadn't found Angelo. Which was good. But then he had to be careful he didn't lead them to Angelo, either.

When Eva returned after talking to Amanda, Lee definitely knew something was wrong. In all that rambling Amanda hadn't once offered an idea about where Angelo might be or asked what was going on with Lee. Eva hadn't even mentioned if Amanda was worried about Angelo—which Lee definitely knew she was. Just a listing of what she was doing with the house. And now their tail had left. Something definitely was wrong here. He had to call Amanda—talk to her himself. Find out what was really going on.

As he listened to Amanda's message, it clicked. Eva had heard this, too. But she hadn't told him. And right after that, their tail was gone. So Eva had passed the information on to the KGB. But why? Maybe they promised them safety if she and Angelo returned to the Soviet Union—maybe they had Eva's family—though she had never mentioned family in all the time he had known her. She was under some sort of pressure—that had to be the reason she was helping them. But right now, Amanda and Angelo were at Liberty Larry's with the KGB about to arrive any minute. He had to get there—fast. He wouldn't let on to Eva he had figured out her part in the plan—not yet. Get Amanda and Angelo safe first—then ask Eva about it.

As Lee drove up and saw the cars—the one that had been tailing them and Amanda's station wagon—he knew Eva was keeping something from him—but he would do all he could to help her—and Angelo. He owed it to them

Then Eva pulled her gun on him—the gun Amanda had found while straightening up—the gun he just let Eva convince him was for protection against the KGB. How could he have been so stupid—again?

"I don't choose my lovers particularly well," he told her. 'That about sums it all up.' He thought. 'And I wanted to marry her—that's a bullet I'm glad I dodged. I loved her—I loved her—in the past—no more.' He felt an enormous relief, then realization hit. 'Last night—she was trying to play me—get me into bed—use sex as leverage. Two can play at that game.' He stepped forward, "I don't think you could kill someone that loved you."

He was taking a chance. He thought furiously, 'I've got to get to Amanda and Angelo. She won't shoot me—or if she does—maybe it's for the best—no, she won't shoot—will she?' He continued, "Can you forget Venice, Eva? Just like that?" He thought again, 'Now or never, time is running out,' and he took another step.

Click. The sound was nearly deafening to him. 'She did it. She pulled the trigger.' His guts felt like lead. Then realization hit. 'And I wasn't shot?!?'

"You knew it wasn't loaded," she said bitterly.

"No I didn't." As he bundled Eva into the car trunk he thought, 'but I'm sure glad it wasn't. Amanda had to have unloaded it. That's another one I owe her for,' he was grateful once again that she had been with him on this assignment.

Once Lee stopped the crusher, Amanda and Angelo squeezed out of the car. Amanda called the Agency for backup while Lee restrained the KGB agents with Angelo's help. Eva was left in the trunk of the car.

Amanda retuned and talked to Lee, "Liberty Larry is out cold in his office."

"The cleanup team will take care of him," Lee replied.

Amanda hung her head, "They followed me, didn't they?"

Lee nodded, "One did. The other two were following me and Eva."

Amanda looked surprised, "How did you know to come here?" she asked.

Lee smiled at her, "Your message."

Amanda looked around, "Where is Eva? She's … um … she probably shouldn't be left alone." She looked uncomfortable, as if she knew something Lee wouldn't like.

"I locked her in the trunk of the car." Lee stated with a dark angry look.

Amanda was shocked, "What? How did you know? When did you know?"

"When she tried to shoot me," he stated flatly. Amanda looked surprised. He asked her, "When did you know?"

"Angelo heard her on the phone talking to her KGB superiors. That's why he left. He told me when I found him here."

Lee figured Amanda had some inkling before that, but was being her usual modest self. Then the relief hit him. 'So that's why he took off. He probably was long gone before Eva and I made it to the living room.' Lee nodded.

Amanda looked pleased, "So that's another one you've wrapped up, Scarecrow."

"Yeah, with your help," he acknowledged gratefully. Amanda smiled at him, and he continued, "Thank you, you were a real help on this one. I'm glad you were around."

"You're welcome, Lee," she placed her hand gently on his arm. Her quiet reply showed him she understood just how difficult it had been for him.

Just then, the Agency cars drove up and the cleanup team took over.

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Much later, at home, Lee was sitting in his living room, nursing a scotch. 'The last three days have been hell. Angelo—Eva dead—Eva alive—Eva still loves me—Eva was KGB all the time—from the very start. And I fell for it like a ton of bricks. It never entered my head that Eva could be KGB. We knew there were other KGB agents in Angelo's courses—but we never spotted Eva. Never.' He shook his head sorrowfully.

'Amanda spotted her right off. She said from the start something wasn't right about Eva. And I didn't listen to her. I was still in love with Eva. Well, it's over now. I'm not in love with her anymore. Something about pulling a gun and trying to shoot me—plus being KGB—sort of killed it dead.' He let his thoughts drift to the past. 'But this time it isn't the same. Dorothy's dead—she died in my arms. And the Eva I loved was an illusion. But illusions don't die—they fade away or are dispelled.'

He took another mouthful of scotch and savored the strong liquor. 'In the end, I'm better off. Dorothy and Eric are still dead—but Eva… She might as well be dead to me. Except I would still care about her, and I don't. So where does that leave me with her? KGB. Angelo was just another assignment. Just goes to show its best to never get involved—keep it light—just physical—casual. Don't trust anyone too much. It always turns out badly.' He wasn't surprised at the bitterness of his thoughts. He let his mind drift again, and took another drink of his scotch.

'And Amanda. She saved my butt—again. It's getting to be a habit with her. Or I end up saving her butt. At least I know Amanda King isn't KGB. But then, I'm not in love with her either, thank God. What does she see in that weather guy anyway? Isn't it about time she dumped him? She could do so much better…'

He finished his drink, and moved to find his black books. "Maybe I'll look up Eliza Danton. We could go away for a quiet weekend somewhere. She'll be just what I need. And when I get back, there's that new redhead in crypto—she was flirting with me before I left for Sri Lanka. I should pursue that possibility. Yeah.' His face took on a lazy self-satisfied grin. 'Face it, Stetson, the world is full of charming sexy women, and you can take your pick of them. Just keep it light, and life will be just fine.' He happily contemplated the possibilities before him. Life was looking up.

End