This story was inspired by a "Castle" episode, in which the two protagonists wake up handcuffed to each other: I thought the situation would fit my favorite Prison Break pairing all too well. Hope you enjoy it. Reviews are always welcome.
The room Sara discovered when she opened her eyes was almost pitch black. It was a few seconds before she realized that her memories of how she had ended up there were equally obscure.
High on the surface of a night-blue wall, she began to distinguish a small round window, through which you could catch the darkness of the sky, that hinted dawn would not break for at least a few hours. Her situation vaguely brought to mind an array of summer camp stories. None of which ended well.
The air was not exactly cold, so perhaps fright was to blame for the shiver that made its way through her body, causing her body to move ever so slightly, and it was sufficient to inform her that she was not alone. What became equally evident was the steel bracelet around her wrist, which seemed tied to the motionless, man-shaped figure lying at her side.
A blend of horror and shocked outrage tore a gasp from her upon recognition. The man was none other than Paul Kellerman, whose presence here she doubted would prove a coincidence. Questions were fusing, shooting stars across her brain. Had he put her here, had he drugged her, why handcuff himself to her, why go through any of this? It had not been so long since the gang had dropped him in Chicago. The strangulation marks around his neck had faded to angry-pink streaks. Most likely, he too would find their predicament unlucky.
Regardless, Sara thought that searching him for a key while he was still unconscious was not the worst idea, and cautiously slid her uncuffed hand inside his jean pocket. The gesture flushed her cheeks with disgust. If she had woken up to him doing this, she would have thought he was molesting her.
The cry of surprise which broke from her lips sounded ridiculous to her own ears, as he somehow caught her forearm briskly. His hold was quite as tight as the handcuff on her other hand and, shortly after, he was pinning her to the ground, with a near-reflexive conduct. It was a while before he actually seemed to see her. The weight of him on top of her felt disgraceful.
"Sara?" He said in recognition.
He was apparently too startled to stop her from kneeing him in the stomach and shoving him off, though to little use, as the handcuff tying them together caused her to fall on top of him as he went down. She struggled for a vain few seconds before finally finding her way back to the ground.
Anger appeared to be legitimate and she inquired, "Where are we? What did you do to us?"
"What I did?" He laughed briefly with stun. "You may think me as evil as you like, Sara, I am utterly innocent in this whole affair."
"Why would I kidnap you?"
"For the same reason you did weeks ago."
"Very well," he conceded. "Why would I handcuff myself to you?"
"I don't know, to throw me off."
Kellerman achieved standing on one knee, steadying himself with the palm of his hand, pressed to the ground, leaning closer to the young woman. Sara's eyes had gotten used to the dark, but the precise expression on his face was still difficult to make out. "Believe me," he said, "I am every bit as thrown off as you are."
His proximity was uneasiness. Sara thought of motel bathrooms and New Mexico. A steel determination rained down upon her within a minute: he would mark her hesitation and no doubt enjoy it.
"If you have any suggestion as to how we got here and why," he resumed, "I am all ears. Well?"
Working with him immediately struck her as ridiculous. On the other hand, he was presently her only human companion, and what else was she to do?
"Do you remember anything?" She asked in the end. If either of them tried to take full control of the situation, he was likely to be on the winning side. And yet, part of her would enjoy this – would enjoy them settling scores now, once and for all, without any regard to whether it was smart.
"No." He said. "Not as to how this happened. I've got nothing past Friday evening – going back to my motel room. Taking a shower."
"I don't need to hear this."
"Why, what's the last thing you remember, Sara? A nap sandwiched between both brothers? I must say I'm surprised you managed to vanish out of their sight, I would have watched you more closely."
"I'm going for bold."
"Terrific." A sigh escaped her. She was this far from starting to claw at him to see which one of them would come out alive. "This is precisely my idea of a perfect weekend."
"You think I'm happier than you are?"
"This is more your type than mine."
"How is this my type?"
"Like I said." Resent was an animal harshness in her voice. "Kidnapping. Handcuffs."
"Maybe you don't know me as well as you think you do. Though by all means," he added, with a smile she did not fall for, "let us get Gila out of the way now, before things get awkward."
"There's nothing to say on my side, our past is fine by me. If you must know, I rather admire that you tried to kill me."
"You don't have to tease."
They looked at each other for some time. The air she drew in was dense, charged with heat.
"Well." He said after some time. "It just seems to me that you and I are going to have to find a way to work with each other, at least for now. Would you like an apology?"
What Sara would like, would be to tell him plain and square, all of the things that she thought about him, things she thought would hurt him, somehow, if she said them with enough style. You're a liar. A fraud, hanging on to a great reason why he did plenty wrong without acknowledging the reason was an excuse, a mere justification.
Instead she focused back on their problem, sought distraction in pragmatism. "You think the company might be behind this?" She asked.
"Possibly. There would have been easier ways to get rid of us though – and I can't imagine why they'd put the two of us together. It just seems like a very bad joke."
"Just out of character. They don't have that kind of humor."
"Maybe they need us for information, for things that we know."
"What kind of things?" He asked.
The look she gave him was cold and righteous. "As if I'd tell you."
There was another while of silence, debatably over five minutes – neither of them had a watch. At some point, Sara glanced back at the round window on the wall and wondered, "Do you think we can reach that?"
"It's too high. And anyway, too small for us to climb our way out."
"But it'd give us a hint as to where we are. I might be able to reach it if you carry me."
He arched an eyebrow with an air of faint amusement. "Are you working on a strictly professional mode here, Sara, or does the idea thrill you?"
"What do you think?"
"Let's give it a try."
It was actually more physical and less glamorous than she would have thought, perhaps she should have said nothing of it. Her left foot was in his hand, her right knee on his shoulder, her waist against his face. All the while, he was keeping disturbingly quiet. She would prefer even a disagreeable remark to the intensity of silence.
"Would you lift me a little higher?"
"I'm afraid this is as high as you'll go," he answered. "Can you see anything?"
"Not much. It's very dark."
"Take your time, Sara. It's not like anyone is being trampled here."
"Oh, my God." She articulated, without so much an effort to sound surprised.
"What is it?"
"I think we're on a boat."
His grip on her leg slackened enough for her to lose balance and the both of them crumbled like a house of cards. A flash of pain sprang from her ankle which Kellerman was crushing. If there was anything which she had damaged on their way down, he didn't complain.
"Why did you say a boat?" He asked immediately.
"There's ocean all around."
"You don't know that. You said it was dark."
"I know what I saw."
Kellerman was silent for a few seconds. "I had gotten the idea that we were on a moving vehicle," he admitted. "I wouldn't have thought of a boat."
"I thought the drugs were messing with us," she said, "making us feel things we shouldn't."
"I suppose that's a blotch on your recovering addict program."
"Are you being deliberately insulting?"
"Most of the time." Especially around her, which wasn't such a smart thing. Kellerman had always had a thing for redheads. "Are you hungry at all?" He changed subject. "I may have a candy bar somewhere."
"Really, you're the type?"
"Now is not exactly the time to be picky."
"Thank you, I don't want your food. For all I know, it's poisoned."
The look on his face was unamused. "I would poison a candy bar?"
She only repeated, "For all I know."
"My," he said with a sigh. "Isn't this going to be a fun ride."