A/N: This next chapter is a little longer then my others...if you like shorter chapters sorry there was no way to end this one sooner. If you like longer chapters then hopefully you enjoy this one. I am in the process of becoming a Police Dispatcher and have been working on learning the units 10 codes so you will see 10 codes used in this chapter.
These are the codes that were used and their definition:
10-4 - Copy
10-7 - out of service
10-8 - in service
10-10 - off duty
10-98 - assignment complete
Diego shifted in the cold hard wood of the seat wanting nothing more than to jump up and run out of this place. It wasn't right them being here. He stared out in front of him trying to process how they got here.
The room was full of Rebecca's brothers and sister's in blue. Diego had always known how close brotherhood officers were, but now to see them, standing beside his partner, he was able to fully grasp the full magnitude of how close officers felt to a woman some barely knew.
News of the attack on the young San Francisco Police Officer spread all over the world. Doc had met officers from as far east as New York and as far away as Australia. People that had never met Rebecca stood tall in their dress blues. Two things united these officers from around the world, brotherhood and the thick black band that stretched across their badges. Row after row of men and women dress in dress blues and black filled the pews behind Diego. Ray had dusted off his old Sergeant's uniform to honor his little girl; even Hauser had that awful black ribbon across his FBI badge, which was predominantly displayed across his chest.
Diego focused on the scene in front of him the memories of the past few days playing through his mind. He and Ray had stood at the edge of Rebecca's bed as the doctor pounded on her chest trying to bring her back. They had let out a sigh of relieve when a faint heart beat finally registered on the machines. They stood back watching as they rushed her frail body into the operating room. Hours later Diego finally allowed his heavy eyes to close when the footsteps woke him from his light slumber. In his entire life, no matter how long or short that would be, Diego would never forget the solemn look on that Doctors face as he approached the two men. The sound of Ray's sobs as the doctor gave them the news would haunt Doc's dreams.
Now they gathered at Grace Cathedral to say good bye to a girl that just a few short days ago had been so full of life, who seemed too stubborn to succumb to something like a stab wound. Diego knew Rebecca fought as hard as she could to survive but the blood loss had been too great for her big heart to handle. Rebecca had blown into his life like a tornado now they all had to find a way to let her go.
Doc's eyes fixed on the large picture at the front of the room, Ray had Rebecca's academy picture blown up. Her bright blue eyes pierced through Doc's soul, he could feel them staring at him. He couldn't help but smile looking at the mischievous grin she wore; it was the same grin she gave him when they first met.
While Doc's eyes were transfixed on Rebecca's bright blue eye's Ray's vision was fixed upon the American flag that rested atop the coffin that held his baby. Ray had attended more funerals in his lifetime then he ever cared to remember. He had held his arm around Tommy's as his older brother sobbed at the loss of his wife, at that time still proclaiming his innocence. He had grieved the loss of his parents but took solace in the fact they had lived long full lives. There were countless officer's funerals he had attended over the years all packed with his brother's mourning another fallen officer.
Up until today it was Van and Sally's funeral that had been the most difficult burden to bear. Van may have only been his nephew but he loved that boy like he was his own and Sally had dropped into their lives making their boys only club of sports and beer a little less manly. He could remember holding little Rebecca in his arms as she cried herself to sleep after being told of her parents death. She stood next to him her little hand wrapped tightly in his larger hand as she fought the tears as they lowered her parent's coffins into the ground.
No funeral or measure of sadness could prepare him for today. He had been there the day Rebecca was born, he had held her in his arms amazed by the little girl he had fallen so quickly in love with. After Van and Sally's death he was her mother, her father, her uncle, and her friend. The bond he shared with her was unlike any he had experienced in his life. He could still remember the feeling the first time she slipped up and called him Daddy instead of Uncle Ray. He remembered the elation he felt inside and at the same time the sadness he felt that he wasn't her Daddy or her Granddaddy. Now as he stared at that flag, a symbol of honor, he felt nothing but sorrow and regret.
The service dragged on and on as the Police Commissioner, Rebecca's Lieutenant, and other officers all stood to pay their respects. They all talked about the natural abilities that Rebecca processed that made her such a strong cop and how she so quickly she moved to a detective. No eulogy was complete without the speaker saying how the SFPD would never be the same without her.
Diego heard the words they were speaking but the words never processed themselves through his mind. He sat emotionless staring at her picture his mind filled with the regret of letting her down. It wasn't until he felt the brush of the man next to him that his mind came back to the reality around him. He watched in awe as Hauser stood and approached the microphone, he was more amazed that Ray stood up and shook the FBI agents hand.
Emerson stood in front of the room full of officers, many of which he had worked with in the past. Every fiber of his being wanted to yell out to these people how sorry he was, that it was his fault that the world lost this amazing young woman. Instead Emerson stared out at the sea of blue for a moment before turning around and placing his hand softly on the Flag draped casket, "I'm sorry Madsen…" he whispered before addressing the crowd.
"I'll never forget the first time I met Detective Madsen she was working a case that my office had jurisdiction over," Emerson stopped as the crowd murmured all knowing too well what that was like, "I walked into that room ready to squish the little lady that was invading my crime scene. Little did I know that the Detective was Rebecca Madsen. She didn't take lightly to my kicking her off the case, she even refused to leave. It wasn't until a phone call from her Lieutenant that she finally backed off, of course that wasn't till she let me know what she thought of me. I believe her exact words were, 'Way to be a dick about it'," the crowd in spite of themselves laughed at this. Those who knew Rebecca personally could hear the words as if they were coming from her own mouth. Those who had never met her knew how awesome it would be talk to an FBI agent like that.
"In that moment staring at this young detective I knew there was something special about her. When we learned she took it upon herself to take evidence from the scene in effort to solve the crime I realize what an asset she would be to our team, and she was. The world will never know the countless number of lives she saved working on our task force and will never realize what we are losing today."
Hauser stopped for a moment turning towards Ray, "I told you that was the first time I met Detective Madsen was while working on a case but that wasn't the first time I saw Rebecca. Sixteen years ago I asked Ray Archer to be a part of the same task force Rebecca joined. When he first told me no, I didn't accept his answer. I showed up at his door and to my surprise a little blond girl answered the door. To say that Rebecca was a precocious little thing is an understatement." Hauser paused and looked right at Ray, "You raised a good kid Ray. I'm sorry I took her from you…." With those final words Hauser took his seat between Diego and Lucy grasping tightly to Lucy's hand.
Diego sat still no longer fighting the tears that he had fought so hard to keep in. He wanted to stand up and talk about his friend, to tell everyone how she had changed him. She made him face the world again the good and the bad. He wanted to tell them that she was more than just a good cop, to talk about how she loved dim sung and despite her tiny frame could out eat any man. He wanted to tell them how she protected him and saved him. He wanted to tell them how he held her in that street promising to return the favor and save her life. He needed to tell them that it was his fault for not being there instead he sat back silently staring at her picture.
"Ready…Aim…Fire!" BANG…the sound of gun fire rang out. "Aim…fire…." BANG another 7 guns released another round of ammo. The sound of gun fire echoed as the Sergeant yelled his last command to the honor guard, "Aim….fire!" The final sounds of the guns rang out completing the 21 gun salute.
As the echoes of gun fire ended a lone bugler began playing from a hill behind the group gathered around the casket. As each pained notes of Taps was played Diego became more and more aware of his surroundings. They had taken the short drive from the cathedral to the cemetery where Rebecca's parents had been laid to rest. It was a cool spring morning in San Francisco the air was filled with rain clouds that threatened to unload heavens own tears over the mourners. Diego sat next to Ray as they went through the motions of the service it wasn't until those guns rang out that Diego came back to his senses.
Ray listen to the bugler honor his little girl as he stared at her coffin. There wasn't a hint of sunshine on this dreary day but still his dark sunglasses covered his eyes as he sat straight up wishing it was him lying in that casket rather than her. As the final notes rang out Ray glanced over to the headstones next to where she was taking her final rest. They had been in this same spot 16 years ago when she was forced to say goodbye to her parents, now she was reunited with them forever. On the other side of Van and Sally was the gravestone for Tommy, Ray wanted more than anything to go and destroy that memento, Tommy wasn't dead….not yet…and Tommy certainly didn't deserve to be buried anywhere near HIS family!
With the final eerie echo of taps through the cemetery two officers approached either side of the coffin their right arm's slowly raised to the brim of their cap's saluting the young officer who gave the ultimate sacrifice. The two men picked up either side the American Flag preparing to present the flag to Ray.
"All units…all units…prepare for roll call…" the voice of a dispatcher could be heard from a patrol car, "Headquarters to SF Officer 963 do you copy?" the radio cut out and only silence could be heard the flag was move in front of her casket and pulled tightly. "Headquarters to SF Officer 963 do you 10-4?" the silence was deafening as the flag was folded length wise in half.
"Headquarters to SF Officer 963…Officer Rebecca Madsen… please respond…" the sound of the flag moving in the wind could be heard. As the radio remained silent the officers began folding the flag in to triangular folds from one side to the other.
Another voice came over the radio "SF 137 to Headquarters…SF Officer 963, Officer Rebecca Madsen is 10-7" the call came over the radio that the detective was no longer is service.
"All units…all units… San Francisco Police Officer Rebecca Madsen Badge number 11963 is 10-7…" as Rebecca's last call was broadcast the officers continued folding the American flag. "On March 27, 2012 Rebecca Madsen was attempting to apprehend a suspect when she was attacked while on duty. Officer Madsen succumbed to her injuries. Greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friend. Officer Madsen paid the ultimate price to keep our city safe. Please stand by for a moment of silence."
The radios across San Francisco and the greater bay area went silent as officers both in vehicles and on foot stopped and remembered their fallen officer. The officers surrounding Ray, Diego, Hauser and Lucy all lifted their arms in salute to the officer as silence surrounded them. Lucy squeezed Hauser's hand and the two rose from their seats. Hauser lifted his own arm up saluting the girl who had challenged his world. Lucy stood next to Hauser her hand across her heart. Diego slowly stood his own slowly reaching across his heaving chest. He wasn't like Hauser and Lucy he couldn't hold the sadness in he had inside of him.
Ray stayed glued to his seat he couldn't move, he couldn't stand, and he couldn't hold his arm up in salute. None of this seemed real or possible. He wasn't supposed to be here not like this. He shouldn't be burying her, she should be burying him. She deserved to live longer, to be happy, to get married, and have children, be free of the Madsen curse. Instead he was left here alone to carry this burden alone. As the moment of silence ended Ray felt his chest tighten as the sob he had been holding threatened to come out.
"All units…all units this is the final roll call for SF Officer Rebecca Madsen, Badge number 11963, Officer Madsen you are now 10-98 having completed your last assignment on March 27, 2012. Officer Madsen rest in peace your work here is complete. All officers 10-8 repeat all officer's down here on earth are 10-8 for Officer Madsen ready to finish her job here on earth, with you Officer Madsen in heaven watching over us….All Units…" the dispatcher's voice cracked as she finished the last call, "All unit's San Francisco Police Officer Rebecca Madsen is now and forever 10-10."
With the final call over the radio complete the honor guard passed the flag that had draped her coffin to Rebecca's commanding officer. The Lieutenant turned and walked over to Ray placing one foot slowly in front of the other. He held the flag tightly against his chest with his left hand as he used his other to salute the older man. When his arm dropped from his cap back to his side he knelt down in front of the retired officer. His arms stretched out in front of him offering the flag to Ray.
Ray stared at the Lieutenant behind his dark glasses, on instinct his own hands reached out placing his hands on her flag. Once he could feel the fabric of the stars and stripes under his old hands his body gave out on him. His shoulder began to shake as the tears ran down his face he could hear his own sobs.
The Lieutenant kept his composure for just a little longer as he watched his old friend finally give into the grief, "This flag is presented on behalf of a grateful city, nation, and the entire San Francisco Police department as a token of appreciation for Rebecca's honorable and faithful service." The officer stood once again and saluted Ray once more before rejoining the rank of officers.
Ray could feel Diego's pudgy hand rest on his shoulders and he continued to grieve his little girl. They both watched as one by one the officers that had served with Rebecca walked past her casket placing a single white rose on top. After the first few officers walked past the casket Ray finally stood from his seat clutching tightly to Rebecca's flag he slowly raising his own arm to salute the girl that had changed his life.
When the last officer placed his rose atop the casket Hauser and Lucy turned to Ray. No words were exchanged between them as they stared at one another. Hauser and Lucy nodded towards Ray before turning to the casket.
Lucy kissed her hand before resting it on the coffin, "You will be forever missed Rebecca," she placed her own rose on the casket before walking away waiting for Hauser.
Hauser stood next to the casket for a moment before placing the rose from his lapel on top, "You were a pain in the ass Madsen, I'm so…I'm so sorry I couldn't protect you…thank you…" his hand rested on the casket for a moment before he joined Lucy and the two left Diego and Ray alone with Rebecca.
Ray looked at the big man that had become Rebecca's partner, "Thank you Diego…" were the only words that escaped his lips.
"I'm sorry Mr. Archer…I should have protected her better…." Diego answered chocking back another round of tears.
Ray placed a hand on Doc's shoulder, "No son. That was my job…" Ray walked over to the casket staring down at the box that held his girl.
"I'm so sorry Becky…I'm sorry I wasn't there to protect you like I was supposed to…" He hugged the casket praying to God one last time to take him and bring her back.
Doc watched as the tough old police officer collapsed atop the casket, he couldn't take the pain anymore and turned away giving Ray a moment alone. His jaw dropped as he saw the officer standing tall next to a tree just a few rows from where he was now standing.
He recognized that mischievous smile that said the officer was up to something. Their blue eyes sparkled through the soft rain that had begun to fall. He walked over to the person standing there staring at him.
"Rebecca…?" he whispered hoping she was real.
"Doc…Doc…Doc…" her voice was strong, it was her. He wanted to say something to her but he was frozen staring at her soft features. "Doc…Doc…Doc…" her voice began to change.
"Doc! Doc!" Diego's eyes opened as he felt someone pushing on his shoulder. Nicky was standing over him. He looked around the room trying to figure out was going on. He had been standing in that cold cemetery…and now he sitting in a room that smelled like a hospital.
"Doc? Are you ok? You were saying her name…" Nicky looked in his eyes concerned.
"It was a dream?" He looked at Nicky confused.
Nicky nodded her head she then motioned to her left where everyone in the room was focused. The same doctor from Diego's dream was walking towards them, the same sad look on his face.