Annie was usually quick to wake. She had to be, given her job. It would never be heard that Annie Walked had messed up a case because she had been sleepy or drowsy. But that wasn't the case today. Annie yawned; eyes still closed, and leaned her head back more securely against the arm around her.
She opened them, her eyes dilating as they got used to the light. This was definitely not her bed. Actually, this was definitely not a bed, period. She was on a couch. Auggie's couch. With Auggie. Annie would've liked to stay all curled up with him, but of course at that exact moment she became aware of the pressing matter of her full bladder.
The sun filtered through the blinds, making it easier for Annie to see and infiltrate Auggie's hold on her body. She quietly pulled away from him, standing and stretching before walking over to his bathroom.
His bathroom was decorated in typical male fashion, unkempt and unclean. Annie eyed the mess in the bathroom, wanting to clean it so bad, but unwilling to face Auggie's wrath if she ended up switching things around a little too much. She quickly used the toilet, and then high-tailed it out of there.
She and Auggie's phones were sitting on the coffee table, so she quickly grabbed hers, making a quick call to Jai, whom she assumed had stayed in position all night without any type of hassle.
His cell rang three times before heading to voicemail. Annie's forehead creased, and she called him again. This time someone picked up. "Hello?" she asked. "Jai, are you there?"
"Jai can't come to the phone right now."
Annie reached over to shake Auggie awake. This was the same voice that had warned her yesterday! "Where is he?"
There was a moment's silence before Jai came onto the phone. "Annie? This isn't what we thought." Annie felt Auggie lean forward next to her to hear the conversation better.
"Then what is it?" she asked. Jai didn't sound as if he was in pain, but she knew he could act. She asked again, "Jai? What is it?", but the phone had already been taken away.
"Annie, I want to see you. If you meet me by one o'clock at the entrance of the subway, Jai will be free to go." There was a pause as the person on the other side seemed to think of what to say next. "This is important for you to know. It's about Ben."
The man on the other side had hung up, leaving Annie and Auggie to reflect silently on what had just happened. Annie herself was somewhat confused. Was the man talking about her Ben, the one she had fallen in love with? It had been quite awhile since she had seen him; surely this man didn't think she and Ben were still involved? Annie turned to Auggie. "I should go, get Jai out of there." And find out about Ben, she added silently. "I'm going to get dressed. We'll figure out something from there."
Auggie nodded his affirmation. "You should go. But we need to call Joan to let her know what's up. She'll tell us what to do."
They each went their separate ways, completely ignoring the fact that they had each spent the night so close to the other.
When Annie came back from changing in Auggie's bathroom, Auggie was already dresses quite nicely with a phone up to his ear. She walked to his side and let her hand rest on his arm to announce her presence. He nodded in her direction, continuing his conversation with Joan.
Quickly Auggie relayed the situation to Joan, who told them to come in immediately; one of their own being taken hostage happened often enough, but that person being Jai Wilcox was entirely another matter. They would have to work fast, keeping this covered so that other agencies wouldn't become involved.
Annie and Auggie arrived at their building approximately fifteen minutes later, a little after nine o'clock. Annie had her arm wrapped around Auggie's, and they walked hastily to the conference room where Joan would tell them their assignment.
Joan walked to the conference room. She had just come from her husband's office, where she had told him about Annie and Ben. He wanted Annie to meet this stranger to gain information about Mercer. Maybe the CIA would be able to finally catch him.
Joan stood at the front of the room, where she stood tall as she peered over everyone seated at the long table. "Jai Wilcox has been taken under. We know that the man who took him is the same that warned Annie yesterday. He wants to talk with Annie in person today at one. About Ben Mercer.
"Annie will meet with him. Auggie, you'll stay here and be her ears." Auggie looked like he wanted to protest, so she quickly turned to the other side of the table. "And you two will be staked at the subway. I want you there an hour early to look for any suspicious activity." She eyed everyone in the room. "Follow protocol."
With that last statement, everyone went their separate ways to prepare. Annie herself said a mumbled "I'll see you in a little bit," to Auggie before giving his arm a squeeze and leaving the room to make her way to that one stall in the girls' bathroom.
She banged her head against the stall door. This shouldn't be any different, she told herself. She would act as though this was any other op, disregarding the fact that this was about attaining information about her ex- …boyfriend didn't feel like the right term. This was also about getting Jai back, too. She tried to place Jai above Ben, but her emotional self rebelled against the mere thought. She banged the bottom of her fist against the stall wall. "Screw it!"
Annie didn't know whether to exclaim at his presence or scold him. "Auggie. How can you just keep appearing in the girls' bathroom? You're going to get in trouble some day."
His voice carried over the door. "I can't see. Any blind man could make a similar mistake."
Annie opened the door to see Auggie standing there, laser cane on and pointed in her direction. "How do you always know that I come here?"
He shrugged. "Where else do most emotional women go? Besides, it's not that hard to guess since that first day, you know."
"Ha, well, seeing you always makes me feel better." Annie walked forward, twisting her arm around Auggie's to turn him around, and taking his laser can from him to turn it off. She then discreetly placed it in his right pants pocket.
They walked to Auggie's office silently. When they arrived, he sat in his chair, turning on his computer. He could feel Annie's breathe on the back of his neck as she leaned over to watch what he was doing. He dug through a drawer on his right. "You are going to have this earpiece in at all times. I will be able to hear your conversation, and talk to you if something comes up. Don't ever take it out."
He held the piece in his hand palm up and waited for her to reach around his head to pick it up. He breathed in as the scent of grapefruit wafted past him, reminding him of last night. He shook his head. This was not the time to think of Annie like that. She may be good at acting, but that didn't mean he couldn't 'see' past her façade. He would be there for her. This time, for sure.
He ran his fingers over his fingers over his watch. "It's just past twelve. You should probably get going." He grinned. "Would you like me to walk you to the front door?"
Annie sent him a small smile. "Yeah, thanks."
They walked to the entrance, Auggie's hand lightly clasping her elbow. When they reached the entrance, he leaned down to what he assumed was her head, and whispered in her ear. "I'll be in your head the entire time." He clenched her arm tighter. "I'm won't leave you by yourself."