A/N - We'll see where this goes. I just wanted to do a little story that had some action going on. Not that I don't like the relationship stories (and not that this won't have some of that), I just wanted to slip away a bit from the canon of the show for a moment. Let me know what you all think.

"Go to hell." And with that, last, dismissive statement, she turned and was gone. Red held it together as long as he could, waiting until he was sure she wouldn't see, before letting his emotions momentarily get the better of him.

He hadn't expected Gina to take the fall like that. He certainly hadn't expected her to put it all on him. Sure, he'd been ever so slightly responsible, he really had ordered the hit, that was true, but that was all. Gina had brought Tom into this.

Well, it's finished now. With it being down to Tom's word versus Red's, Red had a feeling he knew who Lizzie was going to side with.

He took in a deep breath and let it out in a long sigh as he rubbed his forehead with his hand. It was becoming difficult for him to think as straight as he normally would, were it a situation not involving Lizzie. This not being the case, he was hardly surprised as he felt a tear or two forming in his eyes.

This really wouldn't do.

The Lizzie Factor, as his internal monologue had begun referring to it as, was getting a bit out of hand. He had lost her trust, just as he thought he'd completely brought her in and now...now he was alone here, sitting in his chair, admiring the painting that wasn't his and thinking, thinking, thinking of what he had suddenly lost.

No, he couldn't be this emotional. There were only two options. Take care of The Lizzie Factor, or...


Lizzie went home with her husband. Her Tom. She couldn't have been happier in that moment. All of the stresses of the few weeks. The wondering, the doubt, the confusion. It was all beginning to slip away. In its place, something else was nudging its way in. The emotion wasn't something she could place exactly. She'd expected to feel anger, fury at Red for what he'd done. And, oh did she ever, but there was something else. Loss. That was the only word she could think of to describe it. Why should she feel loss? She had her Tom back. No more dealing with the mind games of a criminal. She was done with that. The FBI could fire her, she'd find something else, but she was done being Raymond Reddington's pet.

"You alright?" Tom's voice interrupted her smoldering thoughts and she turned to him, a smile quickly taking over her sullen features.

"Couldn't be better. I'm so glad this is all over." He smiled in return and the two of them slipped away to the bedroom.

...

The men across the street, still watching, couldn't have been more intrigued by their surveillance duties.


The best thing now, Lizzie thought to herself, is to just take a break and get some normal life stuff taken care of. Cooper had given her a few days to recuperate and she was determined to spend it doing nothing even remotely like her usual work. First, coffee, then the bank, bills, groceries, yeah, just a whole day of errands. She smiled to herself, it would be a nice day out.

As Lizzie walked out of her front door towards her car, mentally prepared for the coffee awaiting her at her favorite place, a car slowly pulled up to the corner near her. In her distracted daze, she didn't even notice the familiar driver, nor question the fact that the car pulled out, following her as she made her way to the drink chain.

Lizzie took her time at breakfast, enjoying a muffin along with her coffee. She had brought along a book and figured now was as good a time as any to just relax into some other story, some other life other than the one that she'd been enduring for what felt like an eternity.

It was three chapters in and two refills later that she began to feel eyes on her. Piercing eyes. Eyes that seemed to follow her everywhere she went these days. Looking through her at all times, suggesting they knew her deepest thoughts, her every emotion. Simply put...Red.

She glanced around, but saw no sign of the man, his guard, or his suits. You're losing it, Lizzie, she thought to herself. You've spent way too much time with that man. It's time to let go. Yep, that was right. Letting go was exactly what she needed. It was probably time for her to move on with her day, she was beginning to let her thoughts wander too much, and that would invariably lead to the inevitable confrontation she would be having at the Post Office all too soon. She gathered her things and headed for the door.

As she left, Red slipped out from the men's room, watching her climb into her vehicle. That had been entirely too close for what he'd been planning, but he hadn't been able to stop himself from watching her, at least for a little while. Now, time was of the essence, he couldn't lose his prey so quickly. He darted out the door after her, jumping into the vehicle as Dembe pulled into traffic, after the retreating tail lights of Keen's own transport.

Red had seen much and more as he observed her in the coffee shop. Her mind was engulfed in her book, but everything about her body language suggested that she was basically content, an emotion he was unsure he'd ever seen her display. There had been times, in the last few days, with him, that she had displayed something close to that feeling, but never fully, never in the way that she felt now that she believed things were OK with Tom.

And it ate at him. He couldn't believe just how much it ate at him. He rubbed his head again and stared away into the distance. His future. That's what Grey had called her. The Long Plan, he, himself, had said.

This really wouldn't do. He had to take care of it.

Now.


Elizabeth Keen walked into the bank, her thoughts drifting, drifting back to the Post Office. Maybe this hadn't been such a great plan after all, spending her whole day on absent-minded errands. While the normalcy was nice, it left so much time to think. Thinking was the exact opposite of what she wanted to do right now.

It was as she was filling out her withdrawal slip that a shadow overtook her. The shadow seemed quite familiar and she spun on her heel, unsurprised at the site of Reddington, all too close, leaning over her. "Hello, Lizzie." That same intonation that he always used on her, as if they were old, familiar companions. "I feel as though you and I should chat," he tilted his had to the side, lips pursed, observing her for a reaction, "there are some things we've left, oh...unresolved." That thin smirk crept in, never quite reaching a full smile. She'd never seen anyone who could smile and frown all at once, but the dead seriousness of his eyes spoke enough for the facial expression to be rendered moot.

"I don't have anything else to say to you," she tried her best to glare, without feeling like she was being petulant, "I told you once to go to hell, I don't think I need to say it again." He smiled fully now, and one of his wry chuckles escaped. He shook his head towards the ground before regaining eye contact with her. His eyes were right back to penetrating her and she felt a shiver twitch at her spine. There was anger there, as well as the hurt she had seen the night before. She turned back to her banking, trying to ignore his presence.

Without warning, he jerked his hand forward, taking her wrist into his firm grasp. "Lizzie, I'm not going to do this in a public place. Don't make this become a scene. Now, will you come with me? Or do I have to do something, let's say, drastic, that's an exciting word. Makes me feel like a real villain." he was behind her now, with his left hand on her wrist, and his right hand coming forward to remove the pen from the other. He was much, much too close for comfort.

Lizzie gulped in a breath of air before responding, "If you want to make this a scene, you'll have to. I'm not going anywhere with you." She tried to mellow her breathing, something about this situation didn't feel like their familiar interactions and she was beginning to sense a bit of panic creeping in.

He was near her ear now, and his words were chilling, "I will take you out of here, Lizzie, one way or another. You're going to feel a sting on your arm, now, Lizzie. I promise, its effect will not last long, but enough that you'll need me to take you out of here. No other harm will come to you...for now." He took in a deep breath before finishing his threat, "This is fun, I really do miss being the bad guy." He was reaching into his pocket for the small needle he'd placed there for just such an occasion when he noticed something moving out of the corner of his eye.

Lizzie was bracing herself for what was surely about to be the sting of a needle when Red suddenly let go of her. She turned around to see him observing the bank, he spun in a slow circle, taking in everything around him. She was about to make a run for the door, when his attention was back on her. He grabbed her by the elbow saying, "Time to go, Lizzie!" and began leading them towards the door.

Though she had been about to head for the exit herself, she wasn't about to go with him. Not without a fight. She struggled against his grasp, digging her heels into the cheep, thin carpet, hoping for any friction to prevent what was happening.

Red turned to her, stopping in his mad dash for the door momentarily to calmly speak to her, "Lizzie, there are at least three men in here who appear to have less-than-admirable intentions for the denizens of this establishment. I'm trying very hard to get out of here without them noticing, but you're not doing much to help."

That took Liz by surprise, and she did a cursory glance of her own. That was when she, too, spotted the men. One was near the door, hand deep in a trench coat pocket, seemingly waiting for someone, but constantly monitoring his surroundings. The second was waiting in line at one of the tellers and his turn was next. The third had a small duffel bag that he was fishing around in by the offices of the bank, glancing up every few seconds to see that his actions weren't garnering unwanted attention. It was during one of those moments that he made eye contact with Lizzie. She looked away quickly, but the damage had already been done. The Duffel Bag Man waved to the Door Man, and suddenly he had a gun in the air, firing off a shot.

Red began his pursuit of the door with doubled haste, this time with a compliant companion. The Duffel Bag Man quickly ran over to the two of them, his own gun trained on Red's chest. "Jus' hold it right there." Red stared into this man's eyes, thoroughly frustrated by what was happening. This was certainly not part of the plan.

"Sorry, I think you have us mistaken for someone else, we were people leaving the bank, not with money. You want the people still here, with lots of money. We're just going to take up space, eventually you'll have some sort of hostage situation, Lord knows you'll be trading people away for food and who knows what else and frankly, we've really not the time for all the excitement. Dinner plans. So, you'll just, back out-of-the-way and, we'll just go ahead and leave." He smiled at the Duffel Bag Man, while his hand reached into his pocket seeking the needle. This looked like a one-time chance, the other two were busy trying to corral the other bank-goers (it being 10:00 A.M. on a weekday, there weren't many) and the security guard towards one side of the room. If he could just get to the needle he might be able to stop this before it started. At least for Lizzie and himself.

Lizzie saw what he was about to do and weighed their options. At best, the two of them might get away. At worst, the Duffel Bag Man might shoot, possibly hitting Red (she found that she did care to prevent that from happening), herself or, worst of all, an innocent bystander. She just couldn't take the chance. While the duffel bag man began to push his gun against Red's chest, telling him to, "Shut up and get over there." Lizzie fisted her hand and grasped it with the other. She brought them above her head, the gunman suddenly confused by her actions.

Red was beginning to pull the needle out of his pocket, concerned by what had distracted his assailant, but not wanted to miss the opportunity, when suddenly a weight came crashing down on his temple.

He crumbled to the ground, dazed.