Hey guys! Happy Thanksgiving (even though I already said it when I update my other story, but you can never say it too many times)! This chapter is quite short, but I did want to squeeze it out and add it before the day got really too busy. So here it is!
As always, please review, they make me really happy and I'd be ever thankful (though I already am for all you wonderful reviewers and readers). Hope you all enjoy! xx
Andy stood rooted to the spot where she was standing, her mind refusing to compute what was now too obvious, too clear, to ignore.
No. No, it can't be. Not after all these years.
But that voice had been somewhat, vaguely, not really familiar. Maybe she was just being irrational. Maybe the adrenaline and sheer danger of what she had just gone through in the last thirty-six hours was bringing her dangerously close to the edge of psychosis.
But it was the same room number. Her father had always said that coincidences never exist. But maybe they did. Oh, how she desperately wished they did.
She remembered the letter her father had received several months ago, the contents enough to send him on a three-day binge that ended his six month sobriety.
Mr. Thomas McNally...he has been hospitalized at...room 14...requesting visit...
She tried to walk away, just to file away the pieces of memory that had come flashing back as a symptom of sleep-deprivation and coming back down off of an adrenaline high, but she couldn't. Not until she proved herself wrong. Not until she put her mind to rest with the knowledge that it wasn't the person who was responsible for everything horrible and dark in her life.
She walked back into Sam's room, into their room, half aware of her partner's concerned question and the nurse's squawking about her reappearance. Crossing the room, she took a hold of the blue fabric and pulled the curtain back.
There he was. Him.
"You fucking bastard," she spat out, her knuckles turning white from her death grip on the flimsy curtain. Somewhere in the back of her mind her mother's voice screamed at her for the vulgarity of her speech, but she was too riled up to care.
"Bravo. You finally figured it out. Only took you...well, I wasn't really keeping track of the time. Thanks for finally visiting, by the way."
"How could you?" she cried out, her voice rising higher and higher in a semi-failed attempt to control the hysteria that was creeping over her. "I was there for the whole night. You just laid there, hearing everything we said."
"Very cute, you two. Nice to meet you, by the way," he said, leaning forward in his bed and lifting his hand in a friendly wave, his eyes locking with Sam's. "I'm Parker Bradley."
"Who?" Sam's voice cut through the air, his confusion overridden by the anger that was slowly seeping into him at the sight of this man. He didn't know who he was, or where he came from, but he and Andy obviously had a history. A bad one.
"You didn't bring out the family pictures and show me off? I'm hurt," Parker said, his smile cold as he looked back at Andy, holding her gaze as he spoke again. "I'm her brother."
The room was silent for a split second, Sam taking in the man across the room.
"You are not my brother." Sam recognized that monotonous tone. She had shut down her emotions, only allowing a thin layer of anger to seep through the walls that had hastily been thrown up in the last minute.
"Do you really have to get all technical? Fine, technically, I'm not your brother. Technically, we're not related. Obviously," he said with a grin, gesturing between them with a hand, the motion sending a flash of pain across his face, and despite the hatred that was coursing through her body at the moment, she felt a sliver of compassion.
"The technicality is everything, Parker. Not to mention the fact that you booked it out of there as fast as you could the day you turned eighteen."
"They weren't supposed to put me in your house, Andrea. A drunk ex-cop with his belligerent daughter? What was the foster system thinking?" he mocked.
"Maybe they thought that living in a police officer's house would straighten you out. Of course it didn't though. Why would it?" She gave a short, biting laugh.
"I ain't blood related with you at all, chica."
"Isn't that what you're saying? You just too politically correct to say it?"
"Oh, just shut up about your heritage for once, will you? You know it's never been about that. And if you're so proud of your real family, then of course you wouldn't mind me telling you what they've been up to while you've been rotting away in the hospital."
"McNally, calm down." Sam's voice once again cut into the conversation, this time cutting through the fog of red hot anger that was fueling her, but she was too worked up to calm down completely. She turned to face her partner, their eyes meeting, his steady gaze somewhat soothing her racing mind. Then she heard Parker coughing, and the rage came pouring back in.
"See that man, Sam?" she said, pointing to Parker, refusing to say his name. "He's a member of the cartel that shot you."