Diamonds Are Forever

Part 14

Mark and Amanda stood at the nurses' station. Mark was in deep conversation with Nurse Sally Winters, while Amanda stood nearby listening closely.

Steve arrived just in time to hear his father say, "thank you very much, Sally," before the older man turned and saw him.

"Steve!" he exclaimed, delighted.

"Hey Dad, Amanda," Steve greeted, "I thought I'd let you know that Jesse woke up a minute ago".

"Really?" Amanda asked from beside him.

"Yeah," Steve confirmed. "He's asleep now, though," he added.

Mark nodded, unsurprised. "Best thing for him," he said lightly, "he needs all the rest he can get".

"Did he say anything?" Amanda queried.

"Yes. He told me I should go home," Steve said dryly.

"And so you should," his father agreed, as he drew in his son's haggard appearance.

"Alright, I'm going, I'm going," Steve relented. "Just don't all gang up on me, okay?"

"OK, Steve," Mark chuckled. "Oh, Steve, before you go, I have some news of my own".

The younger Sloan narrowed his eyes suspiciously. "Am I going to like this?" he asked cautiously.

"I hope so," Amanda piped up. "We reckon we know why George and Bert thought Jesse had their diamonds".

"Oh? And why would that be then?" Steve asked; his curiosity piqued.

Mark answered this time. "Well you see, on the day Gregory McCalson was brought in, Neil Lennon was standing right about there," he pointed to a spot a few feet from the nurses' station.

"So he would have had a clear view of McCalson talking to Jesse," Steve finished.

"Exactly," Mark said, satisfied.

"So I guess that means he didn't kill Gregory himself," Steve said thoughtfully.

"But I bet he was waiting here to make sure he was dead," Mark continued.

"If he knew, why send Bert and George later?" Steve asked.

"Well, after we took him to surgery there would be no way he could find out unless he asked," Mark supplied.

"And he wouldn't do that because it would seem suspicious," Amanda added.

"It would also mean someone was more likely to remember him," his father finished.

"OK, well, that's one part of the mystery solved," Steve sighed. "I'll call Tanis; see what she found out from Bert and George".

"After that, make sure you go home and get some rest," Mark told him.

"I will, Dad, I promise," Steve said.

-

Mark busied himself about the kitchen, preparing a 'normal' breakfast for himself and Steve. He had finally relented to Amanda's pestering and gone home for some well needed sleep.

He admitted, reluctantly to himself, that it had been nice to sleep in his own bed after everything that had happened.

He was interrupted from his musing when a bleary eyed Steve appeared in the kitchen. "Hey, Dad," the younger Sloan mumbled.

"Hey, Steve," Mark smiled fondly at his son. "Did you sleep well?"

"Yeah, actually," Steve responded happily.

"Do you want a lift to the hospital?" Mark asked.

"How d'you know I was going there?" Steve asked back, sounding surprised.

Mark chuckled. "Because I know you, Steve," he said cryptically. He regarded his son steadily for awhile, before turning back to his cooking. "Bacon and eggs, Son?" he asked casually.

Steve grinned back at the other man. "Yes, please, Dad," he said.

While they were eating, Steve looked across at his father. "How's Jesse doing?"

Mark glanced up. "Much better when I saw him last night," he smiled as he remembered, "he woke up and started complaining about when he could go home".

Steve laughed at that. "Yep, that sounds like our Jesse," the detective said fondly.

"Did you call Tanis?" Mark let his curiosity get the better of him.

"Yeah," Steve looked thoughtful. "From what she gathered, it seems that Lennon, McCalson and the Rain brothers were all involved in a case of diamond smuggling about six months ago," he informed his father.

"That's about the time that Lennon abandoned that warehouse of his," Mark said slowly.

"Mm hmm," the detective confirmed. "Apparently McCalson got greedy. He made off with half the diamonds and disappeared".

"And I bet that Neil didn't want to be connected to the diamonds. Assuming, that is, that that's where they were stored," he looked to his son for assurance.

"It is," Steve sighed in malcontent. "Dad, why do you do that to me?"

"Do what?" Mark asked innocently.

"You know what," Steve said, frustrated. "Whenever I try to tell you something, you always jump two steps ahead.

"I'm sorry, Steve," his father said sincerely, "so, you were saying?"

"Lennon dumped the warehouse after McCalson disappeared," Steve continued," then the three of them drifted apart. That is until McCalson resurfaced about two weeks ago".

"If he had gotten away, why come back?" Mark asked, somewhat confused.

"I have no idea, Dad," Steve answered.

"What happened next?" Mark wondered aloud. Steve thought he could practically hear the cogs turning inside his father's head.

"My guess is that Lennon found him and had either George or Bert, or both, shoot him whilst he waited at the hospital for the results," Steve finished.

"And we know that it was there that he saw McCalson talking to Jesse," Mark filled in. "It all makes sense now," he exclaimed, triumphantly.

Steve nodded. "That pretty much sums it up," he agreed.

-

Half an hour later, Mark traipsed into the doctor's lounge after leaving Steve with Jesse.

"Hey, Mark," a tired voice mumbled from the direction of the couch.

Mark turned in surprise. "Amanda, were you here all night?" the older doctor exclaimed.

The pathologist shifted position. "Bus crash," she answered simply.

"Couldn't it have waited until morning?" Mark asked his friend. Amanda shot him a look which clearly said 'I'm not in the mood right now'. "OK," Mark sensibly backed off.

"How's Jesse?" she asked mildly.

"Sleeping right now, though he woke up yesterday and complained about wanting to go home," Mark chuckled at the thought.

"Typical," Amanda muttered, though she was smiling too. "And let me guess, Steve's with him right now?"

"Got it in one," Mark gazed into the distance, "he's gone into 'big brother' mode".

"Jesse tends to have that effect on people, especially when he gets into trouble," Amanda smiled fondly. Even she herself considered the blonde doctor to be her adoptive brother.

"Well, I better get off," Mark said, getting to his feet. "I've got rounds to do, and you should go home and get some rest," he told his friend.

"I'm off in a minute anyway," she assured the older doctor.

"Good," Mark said kindly as he left the room, allowing the door to fall shut behind him.

-

Author's Note: Woohoo! Finally, another chapter! Sorry to leave it so long guys, what with exams and everything else that goes on in my life I've not had much time on my hands. And I know I have found time to spend on my other fanfics, but this one is my best so far and I wanted to wait until I had some decent amount of time to work on it so I can keep up the good quality. Thanks to everyone who is still following this story and for all of your reviews (especially you Beth, your review was fantastic and very much appreciated!) I'm grateful for all the support from you guys out there, please keep it up. I'll get back to you as soon as I can, but bye for now!!