Chapter 30

Chandler fidgeted ceaselessly in the passenger seat of the car. His fingers ached to straighten something, burned to touch or count something, anything. He stroked the dashboard, but the sensation gave no satisfaction. His foot tapped the floor of the car, but the cramped space still gave no release. His OCD was in overdrive, there was no relief in sight.

Miles and Chandler were heading towards one of the two possible locations for Block to have Basen, followed closely behind by Kent and Mansell after they had realized searching both would take too much time, Chandler reluctantly agreed to call Stephens and allow him and his team to search one location while they searched the other.

"Miles, please drive faster," Chandler pleaded again.

Miles didn't respond. No reason to remind Chandler he was already breaking about 10 speed laws. No need to remind him that if they themselves had an accident it wouldn't help Basen. He kept his mouth closed and gripped the steering wheel tighter. If asked out right he would have denied it but he was just as anxious as Chandler. Basen had started to grow on him. The childish pouting aside she did have a level head on her shoulders (occasionally), was quick witted and was smart when she wanted to be. He also hated to admit it but Chandler seemed calmer when she was around, not always on edge. He wasn't sure why it was the case, wasn't sure he wanted to know, he was just happy that it was. He didn't have to worry about his DI as much, well at least in that regard.

Miles hadn't found Chandler and Basen in any additional compromising situations. The last time was in the rest room at the hospital the night they lost Block and he didn't even want to think about what they were doing then. He still kept an eye out for the signs, for hints or clues that they had started something but he didn't see anything and breathed a silent sigh of relief each time. Of course he recognized they could just be hiding it very well, anticipating he was looking out of something, but he was keeping a careful eye out and he was sure there was nothing, almost.

"Miles please," Chandler begged running fingers threw his hair. The action reminded him of Basen and her insistence on mussing his hair. He ran his fingers through again and again it calmed him somewhat. Miles pressed the accelerator down the needle jumped, Chandler continued to rake.

"They're going too fast," Mansell said. He was trying to keep up with Miles and Chandler, it was becoming more and more difficult as Miles drove faster and faster. Mansell was sure they would get lost or crash before they managed to get anywhere near the warehouse.

"Do you think we'll make it in time?" Ken asked, not really looking for an answer but figuring he needed to break the tension.

"Of course we will," Mansell said confidently. He didn't want to think of the alternative. "Basen owes me money, she'd never welch. Now keep quiet and let me drive, right?"

Kent put his head down and kept quiet, still worried what would happen to Chandler if they didn't find her in time.

Riley drew the short straw and rode with Stephens and his DI. She managed to bring them up to speed on what they discovered.

"We don't appreciate being kept in the dark about this investigation," Stephens said.

"You know everything we know now." Riley insisted.

"If you had given us more information sooner we could have moved the investigation forward to conclusion already." Stephens spat this out and twisted his hands around the steering wheel. Riley wasn't sure if he was talking about the Block case or their missing DC but she didn't rightfully care. Right now the only thing on all of their minds was speed.

Basen tried to stretch her hands out again. The rope digging into her wrist was unforgiving. The hands no longer looked salvageable, they had moved to a horrible bruised purple color. She no longer had any feeling and didn't think she would ever be able to use them again. How long had she been tied to this bed, 2 days, 2 weeks? It felt closer to 2 months and she didn't want to think about it. Block #2 moved next to her squeezing her hip where Block #1 had buried his knife deep in her flesh. He pushed away from her and stood up.

"My brother will be dealing with you toot sweet." He said as he dressed, smiling at his cleverness. "I cannot say it hasn't been interesting Basen. Too bad we will not be doing it again." He finished dressing and started to walk out of the room.

"Bach," she stopped him at the door. His hand curled into a fist but he quickly unfurled it. She smiled which broke open a cut on her check but she didn't care, she couldn't resist one last dig. She was going to die, hadn't he all but said that?

"What is it Basen?" he said through gritted teeth.

"Water?" Block #2 paused for a moment she didn't think he was going to answer. She saw his hands clench into fists again and for a moment she was sure he was going to come back and use them like Block #1 had, or simply walk away, she would have preferred him walking away. He sighed heavily, walked over to the bed, picked up the glass and poured its contents in her face. He aimed carefully getting a good portion of the water up her nose and in her mouth, she sputtered, coughed and tried to spit it back out. She gasped for breath and couldn't find it. Her head swam and unconsciousness threatened to claim her as she struggled to keep her head. She heard Block slam the glass on the bedside table. She focused on that and her plan to keep from going under.

"He is going to enjoy killing you, I think I will too." He turned and left the room.

Vivi slowly counted to 10, to make sure he didn't immediately come back. She gathered her strength and pulled against the rope around her wrists. Her body screamed in protest, there didn't seem to be any part of her that didn't ache, she took a mental count. Toes, check, numb and stinging, feet, a little tingly but not too bad. Legs stiff but movable, knees, well we are not even going there, those were blown out in college track a long time ago. Hips were definitely tender, Block spent an abnormal amount of time poking at them with his knife, paying special attention to the tattoo. She was still a little confused what he hated so much about that. Stomach, yep that was still flabby and now thanks to Block's unrelenting fists, bruised. Her breasts garnered special attention with his mouth, well teeth. She wondered briefly what a shrink would make of that fixation. While she continued to make a mental note of the pain in her body she arrived at her arms, which ached from being forced into a horrible angle for so long. She doubted she would ever get the feeling back into the hands. But she was most worried about her face. She was pretty sure it now resembled ground beef, broken nose, broken cheek, right eye swollen shut. She didn't think her face could take much more abuse.

By the time she had finished the pain inventory she had managed to pull herself up to a somewhat seated position, her legs drawn up under her body, kneeling at the head of the bed. She made a quick assessment of the bindings, Block had made sure they were nice and tight. The jute was thin and cut deep into her wrists, the blood soaked into the rope making it an ugly brick color.

Basen now had a new problem. She was where she could easily reach her hands but the glass was now about two feet to the right and down. She knew the constant pounding in her head would be exacerbated by leaning it forward, but she steeled herself for the pain, leaned and grabbed for the glass with her mouth. She managed to pick it up and held it between her swollen lips. The feel of the glass between her teeth was unbearable. She likened it to chewing on aluminum foil and almost dropped it back down hoping to rid herself of the feeling and attempt her escape in another way but chewing threw the ropes didn't seem like an option and Block, unfortunately for her, didn't leave any of his tools behind. Basen promised herself she would give up nameless sex if she could just make it through this latest round of torture. Well for the week anyway.

She braced herself, pulled her head back and struck the glass against the metal bars of the bed. Stabbing pain ripped through her head, the glass made an audible thunk, but held its shape. The glass had also managed to slip back into her mouth, scrapping her teeth. She shuddered and almost dropped the glass. The feeling was worse than nails on a chalkboard. She closed her eyes and waited for the feeling to pass, she needed to try again.

Again she pulled back, again the intolerable pain, again the thunk and again the glass held together. She struggled to understand. She couldn't count how many times in her life glasses had broken without provocation. She had taken them out of the dishwasher broken, put it down on an angle wrong and it broke, looked at it funny and it broke. The one time in her life she needed it to break was the one time it was indestructible. She brought the glass close to her hands and slammed it against the metal bars again, a dull thunk, a sharp pain and an unbroken glass. The glass slipped a little further into her mouth causing a horrible squeaking scraping sound on her teeth, she again almost dropped the damned glass. She didn't want to do it again but she had no other option.

Another slam of the glass and another sharp pain so sharp she almost opened her mouth to scream but managed to keep it closed. She figured it would have surprised Chandler she could keep her mouth closed at all and struggled with both a laugh and sob.

Where they able to make heads or tails of what little clues she had? Was Block and whatever they used to transport her here caught on any cameras? Were they close or still sitting around working through the little scraps of paper she had all around her desk?

She pushed the useless thoughts away, if they had managed to figure out what was going on she shouldn't be waiting around like some second rate Rapunzel and if they hadn't, getting out of here was much more pressing.

"Third times as charm," she said to herself and with no preparation she slammed the glass against the metal rods on the bed and the glass shattered with shocking quickness. It surprised her so that she couldn't stop her forward momentum and her face made contact with the bed frame. Her head swooned, her eyes fluttered and she thought for sure she would lose consciousness for the 100th time but managed to keep herself together. Basen looked around, the pieces within reach had shattered into tiny slivers, way too small to be of any use in aiding her escape. She cursed thinking all that work had been useless when she realized there was something in her mouth. She pushed her tongue around, a good sized piece of glass was sticking out of her mouth, but most was embedded in her check. Her tongue moved towards it and explored the wound running over the sharp edge of the glass cutting more of her mouth in the process.

She swore, prayed, and made empty promises to herself if she could just get out of this stupid bed. She decided she'd focus on one task, get the glass out of her mouth, then she would move to the next task once it was out. She worked at the piece with her destroyed tongue trying to remove it from its place in her equally destroyed cheek. Her mouth had gone passed numb but she finally managed to remove it and grip it in her teeth, the coopery taste of the blood filled her mouth and she fought the urge to swallow or spit for fear she would lose the glass piece she worked so hard to get. She tried to pull herself up to get into a better position and tried to grab the frame of the bed for purchase but her fingers and hands where past useless. She had to rely completely on her arms which meant the ropes pulled against her wrists opening the wounds again.

She rested her head against his hands "Don't fall asleep." She reminded herself. "It's only a small rest," she thought, "promise." But it was no use, the lids became heavy and she lost the battle to keep them open. The cold steely fingers of sleep reached up and dragged her down.