Follow Your Fate

Summary: Audrey Parker had found out she'd had been many different people and lived many different lives. She had found answers to her questions and more questions than answers. But one question remained. Can you fight your fate?

Countdown: Fifteen Days Left

"No, it's too dangerous" Audrey told her. The three of them were sitting in her office. They had narrowed the suspect list down to three. One of them no longer lived in Haven and the other seemed to have her illness under control. She had gotten married and had a baby on the way, so it seemed unlikely that she was going around stealing other people happiness. The third suspect wasn't home when they arrived at his house.

His name was Phillip Carter; he was forty six years old and lived alone. He attempted to kill himself a few years ago but was revived by a doctor. His girlfriend was the one that found him and called 911.

When they got a hold of the girlfriend, she told them she left him because all he talked about was how nothing mattered that life didn't matter. That death was the answer to everything. She didn't want their daughter growing up in house like that, she was afraid he'd kill them. So she took her and left.

"I'm the only that can do this. He knows who you are." Claire told her. "I'm like you; his trouble isn't going to affect me."

Audrey looked at Claire, she started out as her therapist, and then she started thinking of her as friend. But now she was looking at her as her granddaughter.

A neighbor told them that Phillip goes on fishing trips near Gordon Trail. Since they didn't have much time they were going to set a trap for him. Claire had volunteered.

"He can't hurt me" Claire said to them.

"Yes, he can. He doesn't need to take away your happiness to hurt you" Audrey replied back. The officers they sent out to Gordon Trail found him fishing in the river.

"And you'll be there, watching me. I trust you to keep me safe" She told her. It was strange to be seeing Audrey as her grandmother instead of her patient. "We have to catch this guy before anyone else gets hurt"

"What are you going to say to make him think you're happy?"

"The truth" Claire looked at her and smiled. "I'll say I found the family I'd been searching for." with that Claire got up and left to get ready for their plan.

She didn't like this. She had just found her granddaughter she didn't want to lose her. She looked up when she felt a hand on her shoulder. She smiled at Nathan, what Duke said to her was still running through her mind.

"She's tough, she can handle herself" Nathan told her. "She's like you." He saw how protective Audrey had become of Claire. She didn't get to raise her son or granddaughter, but she would've been great at it.

He was with Jordan but all he could think about was her. If she wanted to just be friends he'd take it because he'd rather spend her last few weeks by her side then without her. He'd be whoever she needed him to be, police Chief, partner, friend.

"I know" she replied and laid her hand on top of his. She was about to lean her head down when she stopped herself. She removed her hand from his and stood up. She did want to be with him but she a little over two weeks left was that enough time? She hated this. So she resolved herself to catching a killer first and then she'll think about what to do about Nathan.

They walked out of her office and saw Dwight come into the station. "Chief" he said. "We have a issue" he told them.

"We're kind of in the middle of a case, can it wait?" Nathan asked him.

"Not really" he said gruffly. He walked closer to him. "It's about the Guard" he whispered in his ear. Nathan eyed Audrey to see if she heard what he said.

Audrey looked at him. "If it's important you should go. We can handle this." She told him. "I'll bring more backup"

He didn't want to leave Audrey's side. But he was still the Police Chief of Haven and he still needed to know what the Guard knew about Audrey. She had told him that June Cogan was living in safe house run by the Guard. So they might know about her son and maybe even where he is. He wanted to help Audrey find her him before she left. "Okay" he replied. "Be careful"

"You too." she said staring into his eyes. Suddenly the image of him lying dead on the grass entered her mind. She took deep breaths trying to push the image back. He was alive; she didn't need to think about that anymore. And he'd be with Dwight this time. She told herself, he'd be fine, this was their job. They'd helped people. She couldn't watch over him all the time and in a few weeks she wouldn't be here at all to help him.

She was crotched near a bush with Duke; they were waiting for Claire to jog up to her mark. The officers staking out the river bank told her Phillip was still fishing. They told her the sound should carry over to him because other joggers had passed by him and he lifted his head to look at them when they did.

She called Duke because she didn't know how this was going to go down and she wanted to have every scenario covered. She told him why she was calling him and he didn't hesitate to say yes.

Audrey let out the breath she had been holding when they saw Claire's auburn hair bobbing along the trail as she ran. She pulled out her cell phone and dialed her number.

She pumped her arms to the beat of the music until the music paused to let her know she was receiving a call. She spotted Phillip over on the bank, his back was towards her. "Hello" she said and smiled. "Yeah, I have great news!"

Audrey took the phone from her ear and watched, she was ready for any movement.

"I found my dad!" Claire said excitedly into the phone. "I know, I can't believe it either. All this time and I finally found him!" she was smiling so wide her face hurt. "I don't how to explain how I feel!"

Audrey's heart beat faster, she wasn't faking it, she was genuinely happy. Then her eyes locked on the man that must be Phillip Carter walking over to Claire with a friendly smile on his face.

"Yeah, we'll talk more when I see you" she said and hung up her phone.

"I'm sorry for eavesdropping, but I couldn't help but overhear. You found your dad?" he asked still smiling. He stopped a few feet from her to seem non-threatening.

He was skinny man that looked like he was starting to put on weight. His face was bright, almost shiny when the sunlight hit it. His cheeks were rosy; he looked like the friendliest person in the world.

"That's great news, really great news" as he continued talking to her.

"Yeah, thanks" she replied smiling. "It is"

"Sounds like you should be celebrating'" he said still grinning at her. "You know what; I got some beers in my cooler. You want one?"

Claire studied him while keeping a smile plastered on her face. She noticed the way his voice changed as he invited her have a drink with him. It was like he expected her to just follow him. Maybe that was another part of his trouble he's able to lull people into a false sense of security to make them follow him, to trust him. George Brewster and Sam and Victoria Holt didn't know him, yet they trusted him enough to let him get near enough to touch them. "Sure" she said smiling making it look she trusted him completely.

She followed him over to his cooler. He held out a beer and she reached for the can. His hand clamped around hers in a vice grip. Her eyes widened in shock and her heart beat sped, even though she was expecting this. She cleared her mind and looked at him as he looked at her in confusion and tightened his grip.

"It's not working" he said as his brows furrowed.

That was all Audrey needed to hear. "Haven Police, put your hands in the air!" she shouted at him. His eyes got wild as he dropped Claire's hand. "Hands in the air" she repeated and leveled her gun as she watched his eyes dart around looking to escape.

He pitched forward and plowed into Claire knocking her over and started running. She pulled the trigger and he fell to his knees, clutching his right leg. Audrey ran over to Claire. "Are you okay" she said worriedly.

"I'm fine" Claire told her. "Get him" she said nodding her head towards the whimpering Phillip Carter. Duke was already there holding him down with his knee in his back.

"Phillip Carter, you are under arrest for the murder of George Brewster, Sam Holt and Victoria Holt" She said holding her gun out as she moved closer to him.

"They killed themselves, you can't pin on that me" He said without a hint of remorse. She went around to his face that was smashed into the ground. He was in pain but he was still smiling. He didn't care that he killed them.

Duke could feel him start to convulse underneath his knee. He looked down at him than at Audrey. He was laughing. Now this dude was starting to freak him out a little. He was almost giggling now.

"I can feel it, I can smell it. Your happiness" he said staring straight into her eyes. Audrey had to force herself not to step back as he licked his lips. That was hunger in his eyes.

Then just as suddenly as it came, his mood changed. "I need them, I need it. They filled the emptiness I feel inside"

"This is more than just taking people happiness, he's feeding off it" Claire said to them as she read the report on her phone. She tried to get in contact with the doctor that revived Mr. Carter, the hospital just got back to her saying the doctor had died of a drug overdose shortly after that. He had a history of drug abuse but had been sober for two years. They just thought it was a relapse. "He needs to do this or he'll die" she finished after she told them what she learned.

"Audrey?" Duke looked at her asking her what he should do. This guy was a danger to himself and others. And he had a kid that he'd pass this on too.

Audrey looked at Duke kneeling over the fallen Phillip Carter, he was breathing heavily as he looked at his hands. Suddenly the scenery looked the same but Duke was gone.

She was kneeling over a fallen Simon Crocker. He was looking at her with his eyes full of malice, she looked down at him, and he was holding his side where she could see the red blood seeping through his shirt. Then she looked at the gun in her hand.

She looked behind her and saw eight year old Duke Crocker clutching a faded notebook staring wide eyed at both of them.

She left Simon and walked over to him and crotched down to his level. She saw herself put a hand on his shoulder as his innocent eyes looked into hers. "Duke" she said to him softly. "I need you do me a favor, can you do that for me?"

The little boy nodded his head. She reached behind her neck and undid her necklace. She held it out to him. "I need you take this" Looking at his young eager face. She couldn't believe what she was almost going to do. Was that what kind of person she really was? He was just a boy. That's not the kind of person she wanted to be.

"But it's yours" Duke said to her.

"It is, but someone else wants to see it" The little boy took the necklace from her. "I need you to go to my apartment; do you remember where it is?" Duke nodded. "The door is open, you need to go inside and call this number" she handed him a piece of paper. "A man named Mr. Howard will answer it tell him your name and tell him he needs to come to my house." Duke looked at her worried. He was a smart boy, she liked that. Howard wouldn't hurt him; she now knew how important he was to this town. He was needed and they could only hope he'd turn out to be a better man his father. "Don't worry he's not going to hurt you, I just want you to show him the necklace"

"Just show him?

"Yes, he just needs to see it. Can you do that for me, Duke?" he nodded enthusiastically and proud having been given a chance to help her.

"Do I give it back after?" he asked.

She closed her eyes, sighed and opened them again. "No, I want you to keep it safe for me. I…have to go away for awhile" she told him trying to hide the sadness in her voice.

Will you be back?" he asked hopefully.

She looked away from him. "In a way, I will" she told him with a sad smile, hoping he wouldn't notice. He didn't because he smiled wide back at her. "Now go, and don't look back, just run"

Duke nodded and took off as fast as little legs could carry him. She waited until she couldn't see him anymore and turned to Simon, all the anger she suppressed to talk to Duke was at the surface again.

"I told you couldn't do it" he sneered at her. "You don't have in you."

"I don't even know what I am, let alone what I'm capable of" she told him as her eyes locked on his. Did this man even care about his son or was his mission more important. "Where is he?" she said with all the rage rising inside her. Simon shrugged his shoulders and kept his mouth closed tightly. "WHERE IS MY SON?" she shouted at him.

"If we're lucky, he's already dead" Simon said to her with a smile. "If that one of you wasn't a little slut and got knocked up, we wouldn't have this problem. You disappear, he won't. So we'll make him disappear. The world doesn't need two of you." He spat.

She leveled her gun and pointed it at him. His smile just widened. "They think you're here to help them, to stop the troubles. My family are the only ones that can end the troubles, all you do is put a Band-Aid on them." He coughed and grimaced in pain then continued."They always come back worse than before."

"I'm not going to let you just murder innocent people" she told him with her gun still trained on him.

"They're not innocent!" he said loudly. "They're a menace, freaks, this town would a lot better off if they were all dead" he coughed again.

"It doesn't have to be that way, we can work together""

"With you? You're the biggest freak of them all" he spat at her. "Always coming back, looking exactly as you did before. Betty, Sarah, Lucy, it never ends."

All she felt was contempt and hatred for this man, she cocked her gun and aimed at his head. Simon smiled and shook his head. "Kill me and you'll have to kill him too. It's his destiny. The Crocker's and whatever you are can't exist together. One of us kills the other that's how it works"

"Then I guess I'm winning" She told him locking her eyes on his.

Simon laughed. "You should've had him kill me; you know that's the only to stop this."

"I don't need to stop it, he'll be better man you."

"We'll see about that" he said smiling. Her finger hovered lightly on the trigger. She couldn't let this man live. She'd find her son without him.

"Audrey?" Duke called to her. "Audrey!" He screamed at her as her gun leveled on him.

"Audrey?" Claire called to her too and put her arm on her shoulder. She didn't react at all to her touch. Her eyes were clear and focused. She wasn't seeing what was in front of her, she was seeing something else.

Duke looked into her eyes and what he saw scared him. "Audrey, wake up!" Duke screamed.

She pushed down on the trigger and the sound echoed through the forest.

Tbc…