**This section took a little more thought...and some visual aids. I even took apart a door knob. Fan fiction is such fun to write! Even if I didn't get things quite right. :-)
"You did what?" Cam's voice crackled.
Hodgins recounted their morning – the Cliff's notes version.
"You're lucky your wife left us some breadcrumbs." He could hear voices in the background as she paused to take a breath. "We're passing Camden Yards now. Where are you?"
He craned his neck for a street sign and read what he saw there. The cavalry was coming, help was on the way. And they were going to need it. He could feel it in his empty stomach.
"Okay, I know it. Stay put. We'll be there soon."
He knew in this city, soon could mean anything. All the red lights and traffic, not to mention the one way streets. He didn't answer his boss. He held the phone to his ear and listened to her breathing.
"Promise me, Hodgins. You'll stay put."
Hodgins didn't promise anything. If they spotted Gina, they would pursue her. No question. No rules would stop them. Even if he wanted to wait, he knew his wife would do no such thing. She wouldn't even come close to listening to Cam. Hopefully Jumpin Jack would hold up his end and help them out.
"Cam's on her way."
"I gathered that, sweetie. What should we do?"
"Hold up." Jack's voice stopped them both in their tracks. "Crazy white bitch in the flesh."
And there she was. Like something out of a movie. Blonde hair pulled back. Sun bursting out of the clouds to light her face. She looked like some warrior princess. But not in a good way.
"Gina." Angela exhaled like she'd been holding her breath for weeks. "I can't believe it."
Jack Flash moved to open his car door.
"Wait don't spook her." How Hodgins remained so steady was a mystery. He felt like cold blue steel, strong and unyielding. "Stay in the car."
"Let me call Cam back." Angela on the other hand had grown more than a little frantic. "We have to do something."
The couple argued for about a minute, tossing out suggestions and going nowhere fast.
"She won't know me. I kin keep my eyes on her." Jack was right there, in the moment, with them, the newest member of their team. "I kin tell Ernie I need some more waters. Nobody pays me any nevermind."
Angela nodded and Hodgins worked his phone. The cavalry had to be notified or they might scare away their prime suspect. Their only suspect.
Jumpin Jack was already gathering his stuff; his hand was on the door. "She'll never suspect me. I'll stall her til help arrives."
"Be careful." Angela reached back and grabbed his shoulder. "She's all we got."
She had complete trust in this stranger, like he'd always been there. It was that easy.
"Sure, sure. I seen'em do it on TV."
That worried Hodgins just a bit but Angela was still all in and he was following her lead for sure. Considering he had no plan himself, this was as good as it got.
Booth rooted through the small pile of rocks and bricks until he found something suitable. If he could knock the knob off on this side, he might be able to punch through and open the door. As long as there wasn't something unseen barring his escape.
His head spinning and spinning, he ran to the door undaunted by his suddenly blurred vision. Taking a deep breath to clear some cobwebs, he gave the knob a good wallop. Nothing happened except for a slight scratch on the metal. He did it again. Same result. This made him angry. It had to work. Temperance needed a doctor.
He thought of Gina again. He had trusted her. Hell, he'd even fallen in love a little with her. In the heat of the moment, he'd confided in her. Only to be betrayed. Anger boiled deep in his gut.
Another hard whack and the brick broke in half, bits of it crumbling in his hands. Roaring, he fell to his knees, exhaling the pain so his eyes wouldn't well up with tears. Trembling, he squeezed the brick in his hand. This had to work. Booth pushed through the threatening madness and got to his feet again.
There were more bricks where that one came from and rocks too. He would find what he needed. His plan would work.
He shuffled to the pile again, unable to run. He realized he was dragging. His side ached and his shirt clung to him. Gulping air, he surveyed the rubble.
The rocks weren't big enough. They were barely the size of his hand. Too many of the bricks were broken or cracked. His searching grew more feverish.
Then he found it. A good specimen. This one seemed more solid. No holes in it like the first one.
Booth peered up at the windows and the scant light they threw down on him and Temperance. He stole a quick look her direction. She was watching him; her face gave nothing away except a calm indifference. He half expected her to offer advice and boss him around, but she said nothing. He bowed his head and offered a quick prayer, crossing himself.
This had to work.
No, it would work.
He returned to the door and continued his efforts. This brick was sturdy and barely chipped as he smashed it against the door knob. Again and again, he swung his arm, grunting and groaning with each attempt.
The metal began to give way. Another good thwack and the knob popped off and hit the floor, leaving the outer ring in place. The center shaft was now exposed, taunting him. He tried to push the thin cylinder, but it wouldn't budge. Its screws still held in place. He tossed a look over his shoulder. Now, Temperance was sitting up watching him with great interest. Chained to the wall, she knew she was of no help and her eyes gave her apology. Tears glistened there like precious jewels.
"It's okay, Bones. I've got this."
He cut her off with one solid look and a slow shake of his head.
"I've got this, alright?"
"Did you try the credit card trick you taught me?"
The bottom dropped out of his heart. Why hadn't he thought of that first? Something so simple. No, he'd gone for brute force. He checked his pockets. Nothing.
"Check your pockets."
With evident effort, Temperance moved to do as he asked but she needed some help. Booth found nothing on her either. That idea fizzled, but it didn't matter.
"It was worth a shot."
He was relieved to see her fighting again. "Yea, Bones. Welcome back."
She leaned against the wall and took a deep breath. If she slid too far, her arm hung at an uncomfortable angle. "I believe you might call my surge in energy a second wind. When in reality, it is only a temporary reprieve. My body has gotten over the shock and is adapting-"
His trying to be patient glare stopped her from explaining how she might eventually succumb to her wounds even though right then, she wasn't feeling as much pain. He knew all about how the body could mask the severity of an injury. It was part of the general protection plan. He'd seen too many soldiers get up after a fire fight believing they really were fine only to drop dead hours later.
"Please just be still and keep your eyes open."
"I wouldn't miss this for a minute, Booth."
He believed her, yet he didn't trust the moment. Death was simply biding its time, toying with them.
Booth returned his attention to the door. Now he was angry. They weren't going to die in this place. He grabbed the brick and renewed his assault. The ring soon loosened, and with a few more strikes, he knocked the bronze piece of metal off the door, breaking the anchor for the screws on the other side. This left all three shafts exposed and vulnerable.
He slid to the floor, taking a brief moment to recover and gather his thoughts. He was so close. Taking stock of the moment, he considered his next move.
His brick was too large to fit inside the hole to reach the exposed shafts. He'd have to improvise. One of the smaller rocks would fit nicely inside the door. Returning again to the pile, he found what he needed. Positioning the rock as best he could, Booth gave it one hard smash, using the brick as a hammer.
The rest of the door knob shot through the hole and clattered to the floor on the other side. And somehow, his smashed fingers didn't bother him one bit.
On his knees, he inspected the door again. Fresh air seeped through the hole, teasing him. The latching mechanism was the last hurdle.
He was able to release the latch ever so slightly but it wouldn't stay open. And it hurt like hell. Tearing a strip from his shirt, he wrapped it around his bloody finger. This time he was able to push on the latch, and at the same time he put his full weight against the door. At first it didn't seem to budge. He gave it a better shove, closing his eyes and saying yet another prayer.
And then Booth fell forward, the door swinging open.