This will not be a long story. I have a goal to start small then get better. I changed the rating too. I decided to leave something to your imagination.

Next Moves Chapter 2

Fiona drove out of Coconut Grove and headed north. She knew of a motel in just before Bal Harbor. She had seen it from the road during driving back from a gun deal she had done. It looked relative new. A monument to the ever-changing landscape of Miami. Michael sat shot gun looking out the window.

About fifteen minutes into the trip, she saw that his eyes where closed. Anyone else might have thought he had fallen asleep. Fiona knew better. She knew he had begun to channel his anger. His breathing had become more focused. Someone might say it was relaxed. She knew better. They did not talk. Someone might have thought the lack of communication indicated a problem. For them, it was the opposite. They were deep in thought. The same thoughts. As Fiona drove, she left one hand on the steering wheel. The other slide beside her on the seat. Soon, Michael's hand found it. It was the most intimate moment that either had ever shared. They said nothing, yet they were completely bound together. It was a connection that heaven or earth would never separate.

They arrived at the Tides Motel right before sunset. Fiona went in to get a room. She wanted one facing the water. She needed the sound of the waves to maintain her focus. When she came out, Michael had disappeared. She knew exactly where he went. She brought their things to the room and saw him sitting on the beach looking out at the ocean wanting answers.

Fiona joined him. They said very little. He had taken his shoes off and was sitting in the sand. Fi let the warm breezes wash over her, cleansing her body and soul. Michael took her hand. "You must be hungry. When was the last time you really ate?" Michael asked. "It must have been before. I really can't remember when." He got up and took her hand. Beside the motel was a greasy dive of a Chinese restaurant. Under normal circumstances, they would've picked a place that was more their style. They ordered, paid with cash and walked back to the room, shoes and food in hand.

They sat down and quietly removed the food from the bags. Fi took out a piece of paper and pencil. "Michael, from the beginning of the operation, I want to know what happened. You need to give me a report." He took a deep breath. Fi was all business. She knew he need to tell her. He needed her ability to listen to him. To watch for the spaces in the story. The between the lines. As Michael reported, Fiona drew. She was sketching the operation. During her time in prison, Michael had found her drawings hidden under the bed. Some were illustrations of planned operations. The most beautiful were of Ireland. Rolling hills. He had found her portrait work too. Pictures of him, of his mother, Sam. And of a young girl of 12. Curly haired with a bright smile. Features that reminded him of Fiona, but less guarded and more innocent. Claire.

As she drew, he told the story of his brother's death. She was forcing him to detach. He became fixated on her actions. After he finished his report. Fiona began to ask him questions. "Who do you think is involved? Who would be the first person? Who should you not trust? Do you think the agency could have been involved? What did Anson know?" Her last question was purely rhetorical.

Michael bowed his head. "I sent him away. I never should have done that. I was furious that he could blow the operation. I never taught him what to do. I sent him on a mission he was never prepared for."

Fiona stood up and moved between Michael and the table. His head leaned into to her stomach. She began running her fingers through his hair. "She was 5 years younger than I. Ya know Michael, she was the daughter my ma always wanted. Pretty and girly. Curly haired. She was a little princess, that one, me ma would say. I was a ruffian. Always running with my brothers. Always beatin' up some poor innocent. Always stakin' a claim and never letting go. I ran with such a gang. Me ma thought I would be no good. And my temper. I know, you thin' that you know my moods, but gawd they were terrible." Fiona took a long breath. "The day she died, we fought. I was in a foul mood. I screamed at her. She left crying with her girlfriends. What a bitch I was. Me ma said I was the most horrible sister in the world. I stewed in our bedroom and had a change of heart. I decided to make her favorite. I really didn't know what else to do. While me ma was out I made this gawd awful bread pudding me ma would make. I was in the kitchen when I heard the shots. You know that feelin' when you know that a bullet has met it intended target. The first time I felt it was the bullet that struck me sister."

Michael wrapped his arms around Fiona's waist, listening to the story he only knew from a file. "The days after were awash. Me ma blamed me. I had fought with Claire. I had been the one who had sent her away cryin'. She wouldn't talk to me. If walked in a room, she left. No words I spoke would bring back Claire. So, I left to get my revenge. I left to be redeemed."

Michael stood up and looked into Fiona's eyes. "Michael, I found revenge. I killed the man who shot my sister. And I left the army on that day. I only found redemption with you. Every time we do something with meaning. Then I know Claire is proud."

On the table was a picture of Nate Westen, smiling.