Chapter Eleven

Fallon poured water from the pitcher on the nightstand into a plastic cup.  "Here ya go...you've got to be thirsty."

He nodded and took the cup.  She helped him hold his head up to drink and took the cup from him when he finished.  "Thanks."

"You scared the shit out of me, Donovan," she admitted, nervously.

"I was pretty scared myself," he stated.  "I hate snakes."

She laughed.  "I'm not too fond of them either.  Especially the one that bit you."

"Tell me about it," he said, rolling his eyes.  "What happened with Uribe?"

"He's dead," Jake said, entering the room, followed by the rest of the crew.

"Dead?" Renquist repeated.

"Yes, dumbass.  He said 'dead'," Fallon retorted angrily. 

Alex laughed.  She was really beginning to like this woman.  She didn't take crap from anyone and didn't care who knew it.

"Fallon, really, when are you going to grow up?" Renquist scolded.

"As far as you're concerned? NEVER!" 

Everyone exchanged confused glances, including Frank.  "What the hell is going on here?" he demanded.  "Tom, what happened to your face?"

Renquist touched his bruised jaw gingerly, but said nothing.

"Fallon decked him," Cody tattled.

Donovan arched a brow and nearly smiled.  That was a sight he would have paid good money to see.

"I'll tell you what's going on," Fallon said, angrily turning on a heel to face Donovan.  "This idiot set you up, that's what's going on!"

"WHAT?" The group questioned.

"While I...we...were being held captive, they talked about the setup, not realizing I could hear them," she explained.  "At first, I thought it was Jorge, but he was just a front for Roberto Uribe."

Jake nodded.  "Armando's younger brother," he answered the questioning looks from his teammates.

Fallon moved back to Frank's side and sat down on the edge of the bed, placing a hand on his arm.  "Roberto made that video of me, with Jorge's aide, and sent it...not to the DEA, but the CIA.  He," she pointed to Renquist, "Is a director in the CIA."

"I know," Donovan admitted.

"You knew?" Cody asked, flabbergasted.

He nodded.  "I've known Tom a long time."  He looked at Renquist.  "I never thought you'd betray me."

"I...I had no choice, Frank," he admitted, shamefacedly.

"Okay," Cody piped up.  "I'm lost, here."

Monica nodded.  "Me, too."

"Count me in," Alex added.

Jake raised his hand, "I'm on that list."

"Hell, don't feel bad," Fallon said.  "I know why he did it and I don't understand."

"How can you say that?" Renquist demanded.

"Please!  You did it for yourself, not for me," she accused.

"Now, I'm really confused," Cody said, cocking his head sideways.  "Will you people please stop talking in circles and just spit it out already!"

Frank grabbed her wrist.  "Why, Fallon?"

She shook her head, her eyes pleading for forgiveness.  "Roberto sent that video to the CIA knowing there was one man there who would make the necessary arrangements to get you to come back to Colombia.  My father."

Frank blinked.  Father?  Renquist is her father?  He looked over at Tom.  "I never knew you had a daughter."

"That was the plan, to keep my family safe."

"Please," Fallon spat.  "I barely knew you, you ass.  You were never there.  My mother drank herself into an early grave because of you and your sanctimonious job.  Keep us safe...give me a break.  You didn't even know we existed."

"That's not true," he began but she cut him off.

"Go feed it to someone else, Renquist, because it won't work with me."  She stood and faced him.  "And how dare you risk the lives of others on a mission that would be deemed useless?  I was as good as dead.  Protocol demanded that no attempt be made to save me.  I knew what I was getting into."

"But it wasn't useless," he reasoned.  "You're alive."

She rolled her eyes.  "They almost died, damn you.  It wasn't worth the risk."

"It was to me," he said, placing a hand on her shoulder.  "No matter what you think of me, I do love you, Fallon."

She didn't reply; she merely turned her back to him.

"It was worth it to me, too," Jake said.  "Frank wasn't too happy about the mission, but I was going...with or without permission."

"You should have been honest with us," Frank said, scornfully.  "We could have prepared better, and no one would have gotten hurt."

"I...I'm sorry.  I wasn't thinking straight," Renquist admitted.  "All that I could see was my baby being tortured.  She was all that mattered."

Fallon shook her head.  "No matter what your reasons, Father, you were wrong."

He nodded and sighed heavily.  "They'll have my resignation as soon as we return."

The doctor entered the room and looked at everyone with dismay.  "He is awake and you did not tell me?"  He shook his head in disgust.  "You must leave now, he has had enough excitement."

Everyone hung their heads in shame.  They were so caught up in the situation; they had neglected Frank's health.

"Let's go find somewhere to stay," Monica suggested.  "Rest easy, Frank.  We'll be back later."

"Yeah, later, boss," Cody said.

Alex squeezed Donovan's hand.  "Get some rest, Frank."

He smiled weakly at his team.

"I'm glad you came out of that coma, Frank.  Fallon was driving me crazy," he said, winking.  "You coming?" he asked her.

"I'll catch up with you.  Take my father with you, please," she insisted more than asked.

He nodded and kissed her cheek.  "See if he's up for pizza and beer...or your other offer."

"Jake!" she cried, slapping him playfully.  "You're so bad."

"You should really go, too, senorita Dumas," Dr. Hernandez commented.

"No, let her stay," Frank said wearily. 

"Very well, but do not tire him further," he warned.

Fallon smiled sweetly.  "Promise."

Frank lay quiet while the doctor fussed over him before finally leaving them alone.  "How're your feet?" he asked unexpectedly.

"You're kidding, right?" she said, laughing.  "You nearly die and you're worried about my feet?"  She poured another cup of water and raised the bed with the remote to a reclining position so he could drink easier.

"Thanks," he said, taking the cup from her and drinking thirstily.  "Really, how are you?"

"I'm fine, I..." she stopped in mid sentence as the floodgates opened and the tears flowed freely.

Donovan sat the cup aside and pulled her into his embrace.  He hadn't expected tears from her; she had acted so tough during all her hardships.  "What is it, Fallon?" he asked softly as her body wracked with harsh sobs.

"I don't know," she sobbed.  "You, me, Jake, dad...Jorge...everything."

"I wish I could say I understood, but you're not making any sense," he admitted, stroking her soft honey-blonde hair.

"I know," she said, sitting up.  She reached for the tissues that sat on the nightstand and wiped her eyes.  "I'm just so relieved that it's over.  I mean really over.  This was my last undercover gig."

"Glad to hear it," he admitted and frowned at his own admission.  Why does it matter to me?

"Are you?" she asked and smiled when he nodded.  "Yeah, me too.  I don't think I could do this kind of thing again."

"What kind of thing?"

She turned away, ashamed of herself.  "Prostituting myself for my job, basically."

He'd heard that before...from Alex.  It was something he knew she still struggled with.  "You did what you had to, Fallon," he replied, sympathetically.

She sighed and shook her head.  "It doesn't make it easier, Frank." She looked down at his hand as he squeezed her arm gently.  "I want to forget Fallon ever existed and go back to being just plain 'ol Shay."

"Excuse me?  If Cody were here you'd be hearing 'you've lost me again'," Frank stated with a frown.

She smiled.  "Do you mind if I lay down with you?" 

He shook his head and scooted over while she toed off her sandals and slipped under the blanket with him, mindful of the IV attached to his arm.

"Sweet Jesus," she exclaimed.  "I didn't know you were nude!"

He chucked softly.  "Don't worry, I'm not up to 'your other offer' as Jake put it.  You're safe...for now."

She grinned mischievously as she pillowed her head on his chest.  "Mmm...I could sleep for a year in your arms," she said not realizing she said it out loud.

"I don't know, Shay," he said.  "I could think of other things to do beside sleep."

She giggled softly.  "Thought you weren't up for it."

He sighed.  "Unfortunately, I'm not up for much of anything right now.  You give me a week to recover and I'll hold you to that offer."

"Promise?" she said, sleepily.

"If you tell me the deal with 'Shay'." 

She nodded against his chest.  "Shay is my given name; Fallon is just another cover name.  I didn't want my father to know I was joining the agency, so I created Fallon Dumas.  He wouldn't know her from Adam.  Shay Renquist would set off all the alarms."

"I like Shay...pretty Irish name," he said.

"Mmm...it means 'gift'," she said, closing her eyes.

"Remind me to thank your father for the 'gift'," he joked, chuckling softly as he drifted off to sleep.

************

Frank woke with the feeling of something missing from his life.  As wakefulness approached, he remembered the sensation of falling asleep with something soft and warm in his arms, something that was no longer there.

"Frank?"

Opening his eyes, he found Jake standing over him.  "Good morning."

"Afternoon, actually.  How're you feeling?" he asked, concerned.

"Better.  Fallon...I mean, Shay?" he asked, glancing around the room.

Jake's face clouded in apprehension; how would Donovan react to the news?  "She's gone, Frank.  Disappeared.  Renquist is gone, too."

"What do you mean, gone?" he asked, trying to get up.

"I mean, gone...as in, no longer here," he explained.  "We've checked around...she and Renquist left on a flight to Miami about six hours ago.  Cody's checking into it."

"Señor Donovan," Carlita said as she entered the room, her voice and face registered her sadness.  "Senorita Dumas asked me to give you a message." 

"What is it, Carlita?" He wasn't really looking forward to the message; having a feeling it was not good news.

"She apologizes, sir, but something has happened and she must go away and wishes for you not to try to find her," Carlita relayed apologetically.

"Did she say anything else?" Jake asked while Frank sat silent in his dejection.

"Si, señor, she said goodbye."

Frank lay back on the bed and gazed out of the window.  "Goodbye, Shay..." The gift never to be opened.

Finis~