At Diaz' villa…

"You clean up rather nicely, doctor. Very nice, indeed"

Kristin quickly turned around at the sound of his voice, trying to hold back her fear and repulsion as his eyes roamed over her. He held out his hand and smiled.

"Come. Let's get you something to eat."

They sat in the middle patio area of the large mansion, surrounded by a few ornate fountains and a beautiful garden. Several maids came back and forth and served them their meal. It would be a very beautiful and peaceful setting if it were under different circumstances.

"So do you understand what you are to do tonight?"

"I suppose I don't have a choice…though I can't say I'm looking forward to it."

"Well, this business is not for everyone…certainly not for a lady such as yourself." He smiled appreciatively. "But you must understand that I needed to give your friends a reason to stay away…and your abilities are of great interest…you seem to have been selected as the perfect candidate for me."

Kristin paused for a moment before she asked her question, looking down at her plate of rice. "You don't intend to let me go if Dr. Reese does give you the serum, do you?"

He looked intently at her. "You are a smart woman, Dr. Westphalen. You realize I cannot make any decisions until I know for certain I have ensured my own protection." He paused as he thought for a moment and smiled calmly. "Just do as I say, and I will make sure your stay here is as comfortable as possible."

Kristin nodded, knowing full well there was very little chance she was getting out of this place alive.

Back on the Seaquest

Nathan got to Sea Deck as quickly as he could. Dr. Reese was still not there, but he noticed Lucas sitting on a stool near the moon pool, looking depressed. He went to his side.

"You doing alright, Lucas?"

He looked up at Nathan, a sad look in his eye. "Captain, that man…he has the Doc. I…I know what he's capable of. I found his records, like you asked. He's wanted for drug smuggling, kidnapping…even murder." He let out a deep sigh. "He's killed women and children before…I just can't stop thinking that he's got control of her now…and that we can't do anything."

Nathan quickly sensed Lucas was about to lose it and enveloped him in a hug, rubbing his back gently. "We'll get her back, Lucas. Don't you worry about that. But right now, she needs you."

Lucas looked up, confused. "What can I possibly do to help?"

Nathan placed his hands on Lucas' shoulders and stretched them to face each other at arms length.

"Whatever this potion is that you and Kristin were researching, Dr. Reese started it. And he's going to need some help figuring out some of the results. You're the only one aboard this boat besides Dr. Reese and Kristin who knows anything about this. This guy, Diaz, wants to use this as a means of furthering his own business prospects and he's not going to hand Dr. Westphalen over until he gets it. So, you are the best chance Kristin has got of getting out of there…and she needs you to be strong…I need you to be strong. You got that?"

Lucas nodded. "Yeah…I can do that." He smiled weakly. "I'll go grab our data."

Nathan patted his back assuredly before letting him go with a smile. "Thank you."

As Lucas went off to get his notes, Nathan saw Dr. Reese walking through the door.

"Captain. Thank you for arranging for my equipment to be transferred." He paused for a moment. "I am terribly sorry about your CMO."

"There is nothing that can be done about what's happened. I'm not sure I understand what's happened to Kristin. I leave that to you and What I do want to know is your history with these people. I had Lucas look into his record. Not exactly a squeaky clean business man to be dealing with."

Reese nodded in defeat and the two sat down as Reese proceeded to tell Nathan everything about why they got involved and about his son, Jeremy. At that moment, Lucas walked in with his notebook.

"Hey, Cap. I've got the notes."

Nathan got up and introduced Lucas to Dr. Reese.

"So this is the junior scientist you told me about? He's about the same age as my son, Jeremy." Reese looked skeptically at Lucas.

Lucas seemed to take offense at the term "junior," which Nathan found slightly amusing. "Dr. Reese, I assure you, Lucas is one of the brightest minds we've got. He may look young, but this young man is quite the impressive college graduate. He was working with Dr. Westphalen under top secret orders to try and uncover what was going on. He knows more about this than anyone else in my crew."

Lucas tried to hide his smile, glad that his captain had his back. "Dr. Reese, it would be my pleasure to share what we found in relation to your orb. In fact, I've got some live samples hidden in one of the lab rooms. I just hope I can be of help in getting the Doc back."

Nathan smiled at Lucas, proud he was being as mature and supportive as he could. It was true, Kristin's chances of making through this was in their hands. "I'll leave you two to figure out what you're dealing with. Remember, keep this top secret and use whatever materials you need…let Krieg know if there is anything we don't have. Just be sure to keep me informed of any updates. I'm going to see if we can find out where this guy is hiding and how to get closer."

"Yes, sir." Lucas watched the Captain walk away and turned his attention back to Reese as they got to work in trying to recreate the serum.

Back at Diaz' villa…

Diaz led Kristin down a corridor and inside one of the rooms. Several men were sitting around a few couches, munching on chips and laughing in Spanish. All conversation stopped when Kristin and Diaz walked in.

"Mijos, aqui tengo la mujer que nos va a ayudar esta noche."

Kristin's Spanish was a little rusty, but she heard the words "woman," "help" and "tonight."

The men stared her down, which left her uncomfortably vulnerable.

One of the men, Eduardo, spoke up, mostly for the other men to hear.

"Ella me puede ayudar a mí cualquiera noche con ese cuerpo."

Several men started laughing and gave each other high fives. By hearing the word "body" and "night" along with their laughter, she could guess as to what they were saying and shuddered. Thankfully, Diaz spoke up, this time in English.

"Now, men. This one is not like the other women I have brought you. She has very…special…qualities about her. I don't want any of you messing with her. She is to be the distraction while you boys make the switch."

Another guy, Manuel, responded. "So what's so different about this bicha that we can't have a little fun?"

"Manuel, I will not have any of you touching her, is that understood?" Diaz sounded serious. The men looked at each other, disappointed, while Diaz continued. "Besides…if anyone is to have a little fun with her, it will be me." He raised his eyebrows almost playfully with a smile, which got several giggles and nods of approval from his men. Kristin just cradled her arms against herself tightly, wishing this was all just a nightmare.

A/N: Sorry it's been a while since I've updated. Life crept up again just as I was feeling a writing streak. Darkin520, CF Vici, and chaos56, I tend to sneak in a chapter of your brilliant fics here and there during work on my phone, which keeps me sane. I apologize I have not been as good at reviewing. I'm working on catching up. In the meantime, I appreciate everyone's comments and reviews. Thanks for hanging in there!