Chapter Three: A Dead End

"Well, Mike, it's not looking good," muttered Sam as we drove to the last known coordinates of Mr. Hudson.

I laughed. "When does it ever, Sam?"

"I mean it." His eyes were bright with concern. "This guy's killing people who look like you. Whether he's warning you off or is just bad at identifying you. . . Either way, I'm not sure you should be marching up to his front door."

"I know." I smirked at him. "That's why you're going to do it."

"Me?" He gulped. "I donno, Mikey. We're pals and all, but I think that sorta goes above and beyond the call of duty."

I patted him on the back with one hand, keeping a tight grip on the steering wheel with the other.

"Relax, Sam. You'll have backup."

Sherlock glared at us as I popped open the trunk.

"Are you done being annoying, or would you like to stay in there?" I asked.

He rolled his eyes. "I was merely pointing out that your plan is idiotic."

"No offense, but I do this all the time. All you and Sam have to do is distract the guy while I circle around and break in the back."

"You're going to die," he muttered.

"I hate to say it, brother, but I agree with our friend here. We don't know if he's got guards. We could be walking into a trap."

I nodded. "That's what I'm counting on, Sam."


Sherlock smiled. "Ah, yes. The last thing he would expect is that you would have suicidal tendencies. Never mind, I like this idea."

Sam looked from one of us to the other, his concern giving way to bafflement, then returning to concern.

"Can we at least call Fiona?"

I looked at him in surprise. Sam was no big fan of Fi's, that was for sure.

"Now don't think I'm getting friendly with your psychotic girlfriend, Mike, but maybe I'd like this plan better if we had some explosives?"

I smiled, reaching into the back of the Charger's trunk and pulling out a few packages of C4 bundled together with a remote detonator.

Sherlock's eyes went wide. He clearly hadn't realized he'd been lying on top of a bomb. It was a shame really, I could hear Fi say in the back of my brain, that he hadn't set it off.

I tossed it to Sam, who caught it anxiously.

"Ok, well, I'm out of objections. Shall we do this?"

I nodded, heading off to the back of the warehouse.

Whether raiding an insurgent camp in the desert of the Arabian Peninsula or breaking into your ex-girlfriend's place to steal back your watch, a good diversion is the key to success. The element of surprise is all well and good, but the last thing you want is to be the one surprised.

I couldn't see or hear what Sam and Sherlock were up to, but it didn't take too long for me to realize that their diversion wasn't going to work.

Mostly this realization came to me as I was pushed onto my stomach by a rather large man in black combat boots.

"Hi there," I managed.

He grunted, leaning down to pin me.

Big mistake.

I head butted him in the groin, stealing his firearm as he went down.

"Sorry," I muttered, "but I don't have time for this." I pistol-whipped him and moved into the building.

Which was empty. Completely cleaned out. Whatever had been there was gone.

Or so I thought. As I turned to leave, I heard a whimpering noise from behind the stairs. I moved towards the noise slowly. In my experience, bad guys often pretend to be victims to escape your notice until they have time to shoot you. The smart ones, anyway.

Unless Hudson had taken up elaborate crossdressing - a possibility I could not immediately rule out - the source of the noise was a frightened woman around the same age as my mother. I helped her to her feet.

"Ok, thank you, dear," she managed in a civil English accent.

"You must be Mrs. Hudson," I said. "Any idea where your husband is?"

She shook her head. "No. Oh, but I hope you find him quickly before something bad happens."

Sam and Sherlock joined me soon afterwards. As we helped her into the car, Sam gave me a significant look.

"We can't keep her in the loft, Mike."

He was right. Unfortunately. Off to my mom's place, then.

Sorry for the delays in uploading this! What with Christmas, my birthday, and my RP starting back up, it's been a touch hectic. Expect more regular updates.