~Wild Horses, Chapter Eleven~ "In The Name of Love"

Although Judy Geller's testimony was discounted, and later thrown out by the Judge, her affect on the jurors, and on the public was irrefutable. It took the jury only two hours to reach a verdict. As the foreman, a red headed banker named Joe O'Reilly, read the verdict, Chandler closed his eyes, and balanced himself by keeping his knuckles planted on the tabletop. Monica held her breath, and, once the verdict was read, never quite let it out again. She passed out onto the courtroom floor seconds later.

Chandler was found guilty on all charges, and was sentenced to death by hanging. He would be transferred to the newly-built San Quentin prison, where he would await his fate with the country's most dangerous and notorious criminals.

Chandler sat in his cell, quietly counting the hours until his transfer to San Quentin. He knew that his past would catch up with him someday, but he didn't ever think that anyone besides Joey would ever care. His first instinct, when he saw Monica collapse, was to go to her, and tell her that it would all be okay. But he was quickly restrained, and taken from the courtroom, without ever knowing whether or not Monica was okay.


Monica sat on the edge of her bed, staring blankly at the wall ahead of her. Her mother had locked her in her bedroom three hours earlier. Monica had been roused in the courtroom, and was quickly escorted back to the house by her parents and a kind-hearted police officer. Once the officer had left, Monica threw a fit, and yelled at her mother angrily. Her mother followed Monica into her room, and locked the door after Monica slammed it in her face.

There was a soft knock on the door, and Monica sniffled loudly, before letting out a weak reply. The lock jiggled, and Monica's father entered.

"Monica, you have a visitor," Jack said quietly.

Monica looked up, as Rachel came into the room, under the pretense of comforting her friend. Rachel pulled Monica into a hug, and pulled away as Jack left the room.

"Monica, gather your things, we're leaving San Francisco," Rachel whispered conspiratorially.

"What? No, I want to help Peter with the appeal, and-"

"There isn't going to be an appeal. Joey has a plan."

Twenty minutes later, Monica and Rachel were tip-toeing out of Monica's parent's house, while Jack slumbered in his study, and Judy slept in the bedroom upstairs.

Joey was waiting for the two blocks from the county jail.

"There are two deputy's on duty, and one of them leaves at midnight," Joey whispered, and looked at his pocket watch. It read 11:45. "If one of you can distract the Deputy, I can use the back entrance to get to Chandler."

The girls nodded, and decided that Rachel should be the one to distract the Deputy, since Monica's connection to Chandler was now very well known. So, while Monica waited with the carriage and horses, Rachel and Joey set the plan in motion.

As it turned out, Rachel didn't need to distract the Deputy after all. He was passed out cold, having participated in some very illegal poker and drinking with the Deputy who was now halfway home. She quietly and quickly snatched his keys from his table, and headed toward the cells.

Other than a few passed out drunks, Chandler had the cell block to himself. He lay on the thin, smelly mattress, his hand behind his head, and his eyes closed. He imagined himself out under the stars, with Monica. He wanted to be able to hold onto that image for as long as possible.

A faint shuffling down the corridor roused Chandler, and his eyes shot open. He sat up, and saw Rachel standing outside his cell.

"Rachel.is Monica okay?" Chandler stood up and approached the bars.

"She's fine, Chandler. We're here to get you out of here!" Rachel jingled the keys, then set about unlocking the cell door.

"Rachel, stop. Do you know how much trouble you'll get into? You can't do this.not for me. I'm not worth-"

"Chandler, hush! We'll only get into trouble if we're caught," Rachel smiled mischievously, "But we aren't going to get caught." Rachel swung open the door, just as Joey made his way through the back entrance.

"Alright! Let's go!" Joey whispered, and the three friends made their way out onto the darkened street.


The renegade group had a huge advantage over the authorities, because they were hours outside of San Francisco when the sun came up. No one noticed that Chandler was gone until well into the morning, when the officers from San Quentin arrived. By then, Chandler, Monica, Joey and Rachel were on their way into Nevada.


They had ridden all night, stopping only when absolutely necessary. They had to get as far away from San Francisco as possible. But now, as the sun rose over the Sierra Nevada's, the group took a chance, and stopped near a small river, to rest and take in all that had happened.

Monica stepped out of the carriage, and took a deep breath. The worst was behind them. Now, all they had to do was cross the border, and they would be free. Monica laughed quietly. She couldn't believe it-she was a fugitive!

"What is so funny?" Chandler's hot breath in her ear made Monica jump. Chandler chuckled, and wrapped his arms around Monica's waist.

"I was just thinking about what my "Wanted Dead or Alive" poster was going to look like," Monica giggled.

"It'll be great, of course," Chandler smiled, then turned Monica by her shoulders, so that she was facing him. "Monica, thank you-for risking your life for me."

"You can thank Rachel and Joey. I was going to make Peter Becker file appeals.you know, do it the legal way," Monica grinned.

"Well, we are all in a whole lot of trouble. I'm sorry I've ruined your life," Chandler smiled sheepishly.

"Chandler-my life.our lives, have only begun," Monica grinned, and kissed Chandler softly.