The Choices He's Made

Chapter Seven

My mind had gotten a little fuzzy after tossing and turning in my sleep all night. I absolutely hated the dark, which is why I often left my bedside lamp on. It wasn't like I could go up to Dean and say, "Hey, I hate the dark, mind giving me a lamp?" How pathetic would that be?

What really nagged me though, is the empty thought that I'm here, in this terrible place and the reality hadn't hit me yet... it probably would eventually, and it was going to hit me hard. The week before I was kidnapped there had been another kidnapping, only.... the girl did turn up soon after. I wonder if my body would look like that when they found the missing Australian girl in some New York gutter- NO! Stop thinking like that! I was going to get home, maybe dead or alive, but I was going to get home eventually and haunt these bastards!

I gulped. Would that seriously be my fate? Would I turn up in a ditch or gutter somewhere, alone and tossed away like rubbish?

As I lay in that horribly comfortable bed, contemplating my death, I heard a clicking sound just outside my door. I turned my head and listened for it again. The sound had suddenly stopped completely. Glancing at the clock on the wall, I realised it was five thirty in the morning, much too early for Alice to let me out for breakfast. Could it be someone had been trying to get in?

I lifted my body off of the bed, strode over to the door, and placed my ear against the white oak to listen for any sudden movements. All I could hear were the sounds of feet shuffling downstairs. Tessa and Alice and Dean were all up way before I woke each morning, so the uncensored sounds outside my door weren't surprising. I sighed and jiggled the knob to open the door. It was still locked... that was odd. Normally Alice would unlock my door the moment she woke up so I could use the bathroom and eat breakfast.

I pulled the handle again, frantically trying to get it open. I didn't know why I was so frantic, but I had this sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach that something just wasn't right with this. Alice had made it a ritual the past mornings to open my door for me before I woke and this morning shouldn't have been any different.

Glancing down, I noticed I had kicked something and the contents had sprayed across the floor. A jug of milk, cereal, toast, juice and pancakes were scattered everywhere. I couldn't focus my attention on this mystery, or think of anything logical, like Alice accidentally locking the door behind her, or when exactly she had placed my breakfast in my room without my noticing. I did know for certain that something was very off about this whole situation.

"Alice... Tessa! Is anyone out there!?" I yelled.

I heard no one coming, and the shuffling downstairs had come to a halt.

Tears sprung to my eyes before I could stop them. I suddenly jumped to the windows, which had never been locked or closed off to me before, only to realise none of them opened. I pounded at them, rage and sadness blinding me to any potential danger of the glass breaking, when a red flashing light caught my eye from the corner of the window arch. Sniffling, I brought my knee up to the window sill and propped myself up on it, getting a closer look.

You had to be fucking kidding me! Why the hell hadn't I noticed this before? I'll tell you why, because they hadn't activated the bloody cameras until now!

The surveillance cam was no bigger than my web-cam and was hidden in the corner of the arch. Glancing around, I searched out the room and noticed at least five little flashing red lights around the ceiling. I was being watched. Why was I so stupid and dense? Like they would let me live in a room where I could freely plot out something for so long and not watch me! Why now, though? First, the door was locked while they suspected I was sleeping and now they had cameras watching me? When did they find the time to-?

Shit! Shit, shit, shit, shit!

This must have been why Tessa left me with Claudia that one time. I knew for sure the cameras hadn't been in here before then and because of that, I had built up a false sense of security over the time I had stayed here. Stupid, very stupid!

I sighed, shaking my head and walked back over towards the locked door. Leaning against the door, I slid down it and onto the floor, holding my knee's to my chest as I grabbed a bit of toast that was saved from the spilt milk and juice off of the tray.

I had let my guard down for too long now, like they had. I nibbled the toast, knowing that whatever was to come next, I'd need some strength to get me through it.

Reality started to set in. I was their prisoner, not their house guest. I would most probably die, or be locked in this room forever, maybe even sold off somewhere. Dean knew what he was doing and the bastard didn't mind the pain he ruthlessly caused others.

I was right; reality hit me pretty damn hard. The least it could do was apologize.




"Boy, why this all of a sudden? The girl never did anythin' ta' deserve this! I shoulda' just-"

Dean cut Alice off as he strapped his gun holster around his waist. "I don't know how many times I've told you, Alice. She's a job, a hostage; she's had too much freedom so far. She's been in my office unsupervised; she has even been allowed to walk around with no one watching her actions! The fact she is in that room all night with no surveillance is grounds to be worried she's planning something. She's been to calm through this whole thing, and it unnerves me that Tessa is already so attached to her. She hasn't talked to me all morning."

Alice huffed, "I wouldn't talk to yah either boy, but I need a reason before I go along with yah cruelness."

Dean gave Alice an uncharacteristic sharp glance. "You think this is cruel? Just locking her in a room, with a bed and food to eat? I hate to hear your definition of kindness, Alice. I've been pretty damn kind to that money-maker so far. Maybe we should give her a cell phone, credit-card and a car while we're at it? Hell, let's just call the cops and turn ourselves in! We'll be doing that at this rate, anyway."

He stormed passed the shocked elderly woman, completely disregarding the conversation. He was doing his job, something they had done many times before, but Alice had never given him this much trouble. Now even Tessa was against him. He was worried the women would end up asking him to just let her go. It was time to be more professional and put his foot down; he wasn't jeopardizing the safety and freedom of his men because Alice and Tessa liked this one girl.

Alice followed despite his aggressive behaviour. "She's a seventeen year old girl, Dean! What could she be planin' ta do? And ta put cameras in a woman's room, that's just terrible!"

Dean stopped abruptly and rolled his eyes. Alice was acting like he had just scolded his own daughter and sent her to her room without dinner.

"Alice, it's done, she's going to be treated like any other human being we bring in. I don't understand why you are giving me so much crap. She's in a suitable room; she wasn't thrown in the interrogation room, cuffed like the other jobs. What is it you want me to do?" He was at the end of his wits with Alice's nagging and Tessa's silent treatment. He needed to know what made this girl so different.

Alice's soft face suddenly turned cold and sullen. "Yer last job, a female who was twenty years old. She would cry every night when I'd bring 'er somethin' ta eat and wouldn't even talk. Her wrists were so bruised and swollen from those dreadful plastic cuffs that it broke me' heart in two. Another girl, a year and a bit ago, she was only nineteen and she was so scared she tried ta' shout for help until she could hardly breathe because er' throat was so swollen. Those girls came and went like they didn't matter, like they had no loved ones that were missin' them back where they came from. Doesn't it haunt yeh boy? Ta' think what those poor lass's are goin' through right now, if they're even still alive?"

Dean looked away, shocked that Alice had felt this way for so long. He'd often get jobs to kidnap females for ransom money or compensation, but he often didn't want to know why he was taking them and what they were going to be used for. The first rule of being a hit was to detach all emotions from a job, including the victims.

"It makes me think of yah poor Ma. She went through hell before she died and her one wish was that I never let yeh end up like yer Father-"

Dean growled and snapped his head to look Alice straight in the eyes. "Don't put me in the same category as that asshole, Alice. I'm doing this for my own reasons, not because I want power and control. Money is money to me and I'll do anything to make the bastards who destroyed my life pay dearly."

Alice stared at the boy she had raised like a son and smiled sadly. "I thought yeh would forget her, boy. I suppose that was just wishful thinking, right? She was important to me to, yeh know, but the best thing we could have ever done for that little girl was ta' send her far away from 'ere."

Dean scoffed, "Yeah, all the adults at the time had a say in what was best, well what the hell was best for me, Alice? What if I needed her to stay?! She was the only memory I had left of my Mother, but you and Jacob... you all took her away from me!"

Dean slammed the door behind him, shaking the first floor of the house with the force of it. Alice stood stock still, trying to take in what Dean had just said to her. He hadn't argued back to her since he was a child, even as a teenager he had never talked back to her or had an outburst like that. Maybe the stress of all these side jobs were getting to him, or maybe because she and Tessa had been mentioning Artesia a little then usual lately was starting to bring out the feelings he had buried when he was nine years old. Whatever it was, she wasn't going to sit back any longer and let him hurt people like this, knowing he was also hurting himself from it.

"Jacob told me yeh have to make yer own choices in life, boy, but maybe... yeh never had a choice to begin with."

She couldn't fathom how hard it must have been when Dean, that beautiful little boy she once knew, woke up that morning to find his little sister and best friend missing, never to come home again. Although he had been only nine years old at the time, that adorable little girl who had been attached to Dean's hip had taken the once kind little boys heart with her on that cold and rainy morning, never to return again.

"Perhaps it was us who made the wrong choices..." she whispered.




"I ain't fixing that door if you break it again, Boss."

Dean sighed and ran his hands over his face to collect his thoughts. "Then don't, moron."

Holden rolled his bright blue eyes and started to stretch out the muscles in his stiff arms. Although he normally would have responded to that insult with equal hostility, jet-lag from their recent flight back home was starting to kick in and he had never felt so exhausted in his life. In other words, he couldn't be fucked.

Spencer slapped the burly blond on the back, making him jump in his seat from the sudden and hard contact. Spencer grinned and shoved some coffee into Holden's lap, ignoring the sharp and dangerous stare his comrade was throwing at me with deadly intent.

"Glad to be back, Holden?"

"I just flew in a fucking hour ago and you're already screwing with me? Fuck off." Although his snappy remark may have seemed like he was rejecting Spencer's offer, he took the coffee and openly drank it with hidden appreciation. Spencer wasn't thrown off in the least.

"Me and Cole got in yesterday and feel fully refreshed, thanks for asking," he said and chuckled when Holden abandoned his coffee on the table and lunged for the younger male.

As Holden managed to snag Spencer and get him in a chokehold, Cole stood next to Greg watching with little interest. "Guy doesn't know when he's ahead," the cocky blond muttered.

Greg, who stood a good four inches taller than Cole, nodded in agreement. "Spence isn't the brightest, but he means well."

"He means to piss us off," Cole commented under his breath.

As the taller and older of the males passed by the wrestling Holden and Spencer, he muttered something in Japanese, halting Holden's violent tirade as he could distinct an obvious insult in just about any language. Adam didn't even glance at him when Holden growled low in his throat.

"What'd he say?" he snapped, not even acknowledging Spencer as the dark haired male groaned from being thrown to the living room floor in their boyish wrestling match. If they were serious, one of them would have been dead by now. Minimal injuries usually meant they were just play-fighting, or sparring.

Cole laughed. "I think he insulted you in Japanese."

Holden, being the gentleman that he was, gave Adam the finger. "Here's some Japanese for ya', Doc."

"Mature," Greg muttered.

Adam ignored Holden, which made the easily agitated man all the more irritated. Dean tried to ignore them as best he could, but with Holden's yelling, and Spencer and Greg's grunts as they tried to hold him back, he was slowly starting to lose his cool demeanour.

"Could the lot of you just shut the hell up?!"

The room went silent. Holden was completely still, with Spencer and Greg still wrapped around his waist and neck in the attempt to keep him away from Adam – mainly for Holden's safety, because he didn't have a high hope in hell of beating Adam in a fist fight. Adam, who never really paid attention to anyone's orders except Deans, even flinched from the sudden outburst.

"Great, you idiot's woke up sleeping beauty," Cole muttered and glanced towards an extremely pissed off Colt.

Colt scratched the back of his head lazily. Looking around, he zoned in on the cause of the noise that had woke him up after being on a eight and a half hour flight from Venice back to the states all night. He immediately glared at Spencer, who had flown in a day earlier with Cole and left the rest of them back in Italy to clean up the mess they had made. It had been a shit-race back to the states before news was broadcasted of a warehouse explosion in Venice, lest they run into trouble through security at the airports and have to call in more unnecessary favours. Fuck knows they were already running out of people who owed them big for something. Dean used their last transport favours for a job in Australia a week before.

"Guys, I finally got to sleep and you start yelling like we're being raided? Grow up!"

They all dispersed into separate corners, not wanting to mess with Colt if he was anything like his Father when angered or annoyed. Dean glanced at up at him from where he was leaning against the living room wall, nodding a quick greeting to the younger man. Colt nodded back in a half-assed way and started to crack his neck from sleeping in an awkward position in one of the upstairs guest rooms.

"So, how'd that job in Oz go?" he asked. "Spencer wouldn't shut up about this hilarious chick you picked up."

Dean rolled his eyes when Colt looked at him for an answer. Obviously he was still half asleep. Spencer laughed awkwardly and shrugged when Dean glared at him.

So this girl had gotten to that halfwit to, he noticed. This was getting more annoying by the second.

"Yep, that job Myer was so worked up over we finally had time to pick up. Your Father was never so worked up over something like this before."

Colt shrugged, "I heard her Father dabbles in the stock market, so she's good for a few hundred thousand, maybe half a mill if Dad plays his cards right."

Holden chuckled as he lit up a cigarette, "and we're only getting forty grand out of it. I think we got ripped off."

Dean glared at Holden. "Holden..." he warned.

Holden rolled his eyes and twisted his cigarette into the ashtray. "Whatever."

Dean sighed, "Anyway, she's female," which someone cut in with, 'obviously.' Dean didn't look very happy when he continued with, "haha, funny. Seventeen, Caucasian, born and raised in Australia, in grade eleven, high school. Her Father's a stockbroker for a law firm in Sydney, and her Mother's from a prominent background. We need to transport her to Myer's estate in Virginia, from there Myer's given the order that Colt can take over the rest when he makes sure she's the right girl."

Colt was wide awake by now. He had actually stopped mid-stretch when he heard the final detail of Dean's explanation. Him? He was going to lead this incredibly easy job? Hell no! This would just consist of calls, ransom, and exchange and retrieve... how boring! No bombs, no guns, not even a fight or two... there was nothing to gain out of this. Dean was basically palming this babysitting job off onto him, God-Damn it!

Colt groaned loudly from that rather annoying thought.

Dean ignored him, greeting the muscular red-head who just walked into the room with a mini portable laptop in his arms. Nodding to the rest of the guys, Jean Crammond waltzed over towards Dean and handed him the computer.

"What's this?" Dean asked, looking slightly confused as to what he was supposed to be reading off of the screen.

"Well, you did say we'd take this guy if we had the time. His names Juri Mcauly, and he says he needs this man," he paused as he opened a new tab on the laptop screen, "dead before he leaks confidential information to the media about something or other. His current residence is Kyoto, Japan. I sent Juri an untraceable email confirming out compliance and to have the money wired to our MAV account in San Francisco as soon as he can before we take any action."

Dean nodded as he handed the laptop back to Jean. "Media, eh? This guy seems pretty important... what's the pay?"

"A lot..." was all Jean said as he looked down and went on to make a barrage of clicking sounds.

"How long have we had tracks on this guy?"

Jean clicked on something, read the information and responded, "Since we first had contact with Mr. Mcauly, I had started to gather information on our target, and I've had him tracked for a little over eight weeks now. From his home address all the way down to how many buttons are on his best dress shirt, we have enough info to take him out unnoticed. I can even tell you exactly what he's doing at this moment, and I'll probably be able to guess what he'll be doing a moment later. He's just that easy." Jean smirked.

Holden took a sip of the coffee Spencer had offered him earlier. "Mate, fuck you're scary..."

Jean chuckled darkly as he continued to pull up every spec of info he could find. "Indeed, I am."

Dean shrugged, "he's good at what he does and does it seriously, unlike some of you." He looked around, pegging the obvious three with a stare of steel.

Spencer, Holden and Cole all turned their heads and started chatting amongst themselves. Dean rolled his eyes, ignoring their blatant attempt at ignoring the obvious – they never took anything seriously for more than two seconds.

Alice suddenly stepped into the living room with a jug of water and some glass cups. Normally she would be all smiles and give each of the men a personal greeting, maybe even sit in to eaves drop, but this time she simply slipped the tray onto the coffee table and left just as silently as she had entered. All heads turned to Dean, who wasn't even fazed by her odd behaviour, and silently asked the question no one had the balls to say out loud – "What was that all about?"

Of course, Colt was never the shy one and his curiosity was peaked. "You leave the toilet seat up or something?" he asked, his right thumb pointed towards the downstairs bathroom.

"Jasmine rides my ass whenever I do that," Holden commented flippantly.

"Blame our new house guest," Dean replied in that 'let's not talk about it and say we did,' tone.

Colt never could take a hint. "House guest?"

Jean perked when the topic had changed and paused for a moment on his lap-top. "Which reminds me," he gestured outside in the hallway, where a few doors down, contained the INTO. room, "I went in to check the wiring in the interrogation room and noticed that it had been virtually unused. Didn't you say we had that girl Myer sent you out for, staying here until he gets back? It's been a few days now."

"Alice thought putting women in that room was cruel, so she begged me to leave her in one of the spare rooms. She's playing with Alice's head, I swear it," Dean muttered the last sentence to himself.

The men looked at each other, confused as to why their boss would ignore his own protocol. Dean could tell that a barrage of unwanted questions was about to take place and he scattered to find something, anything, to deter their curiosity – if for the moment. Colt just happened to be the poor bastard in Dean's line of vision at the time.

"If you're so curious, why doesn't Colt go up and fetch her for us?"

Colt jumped, quite visibly, and shook his head. "Oh no, no, no, no, no..."

Holden glanced at Dean, and seemed to catch on to what his Boss was getting at. He decided to join in on the fun and egg on this sick mind game Dean was playing. Getting up off of the couch, Holden stepped behind a suspicious Colt and slapped him hard on his shoulder bone. Colt, being used to this bullying by now, tried not to flinch from the sudden jolt of pain he had gotten from the stronger mans friendly slap. Despite still having a bullet proof vest on from when they landed in the states – he had been wearing it under a jacket – he still felt the impact.

"Come on Colt," Holden said in a persistent tone, "May as well go and check out the chick you'll be selling back to Australia. It's either you... or Cole."

They both glanced at the blond who stood to the side, grinning from ear to ear at the thought of waking up the Princess he had failed to tease on the plane ride earlier in the week, thanks to that do-no-wrong-against-woman moron, Spencer.

Colt may have been selfish and crude, but he wasn't so cruel as to unleash that punishment onto anyone – male or female. Finally giving in, Colt shoved Holden away and made his way towards the stairs. All while he continued to mutter under his breath, "Fucking assholes wake me up then do this shit."

The hardy laughs behind him only added fuel to the inferno that was his aura at that moment. He was going to kill all of them, someday, somehow.

As he left, the laughter died down and everyone pretty much got over their temporary source of amusement.

"You sure she should be down here when we're talking of this next job, Dean?" Greg asked seriously.

Dean shrugged. "I'd rather have her where I can see her. This is a good opportunity to see how Colt treats his orders, and it could be interesting to watch."

"That's sick amusement..." Spencer laughed.

"Seriously though, why did you ask him to get her?" Holden asked.

Dean glanced at them, his eyes turning steely as he thought of the right way to put this thought into words. "I want you all to get a good look at her before we take. Watch her actions and the way she reacts to us, then tell me what you think."

Adam perked slightly at Dean's odd behaviour. "Why's that...?"

"I just want to know if you all have the same theory as Tessa and Alice."

Honestly, he wanted to see the impact this girl had on the closest people around him. He wanted to see what drew people to this girl, and how she managed to weasel her way into their good graces. He would not let her win.




I was bored.

Correction; I was very, very bored. As bored as a Kangaroo on a trampoline. It had been hours, and in that time, I hadn't moved from sitting in front of the door. I had actually made a pretty big mess with my destroyed breakfast. I admitted that doing this was a mistake, because after using the remaining contents of the spilt milk as moulding paste, I was feeling thirsty. If I wasn't so thirsty, I might have been paying more attention to the fact I needed to pee; badly.

It was five and a half hours later before the door suddenly opened. It was lurched open so hard, I had to launch my body out of the way or be knocked out of the way. I expected to see Alice, or maybe Tessa. Even the sight of Spencer would have made me jump for joy. I was shocked to see it was definitely none of the three. I even half expected Dean to standing in the doorway, looking at me like I shot his dog or something.

The figure that stood before me was tall. He was suited up in what seemed like army gear. He wore a type of bullet proof vest, and the strangest thing lay under his protective gear; he had on a dress shirt and black dress pants. I almost blurted out, 'that must have been one hell of a wedding, mate.' However, because I valued my life, I just edged backwards away from him silently.

I was shocked, but that wave of sudden panic from him barging into my room so unexpectedly soon disappeared and was replaced with fear when he yanked me up into a standing position. The cool feel of metal against my left temple sent ripples of fear pounding through my body. Was he going to shoot me?

"If you make this easy, I won't shoot you," he growled, his breath tickling my ear.

'Skye, whatever the hell you do, do not tell the guy he needs a tic-tac,' I thought.

I didn't want to die just because this dude failed to use some Colgate when he showered this morning. That's if he showered from the looks of his rushed attire and messy hair.

He moved me out of the room and groaned loudly when I didn't move or even co-operate with moving myself. Fear seemed to leave my legs useless.

"Walk," he snapped, pressing the gun harder against my head.

Why didn't he try following orders coherently in my position? I walked down the hall unsteadily towards the staircase. The guy still had me in a neck brace, or something to that extent, so I half used him as my leaning post. I remember this same feeling when Dean had pointed his gun at me back at the airport, but having it actually touching my skin sent never ending shivers up and down my spine.

He managed to get me walking down the stairs, gun still pointed at my head and ready to shoot if the situation called for it. I just knew I was going to trip and fall sometime soon, but each time I stumbled he'd catch me and pull me back to him. When we reached the bottom, he practically dragged me through the narrow hallway, eventually shoving me into the living room.

Now, being the work of grace that I am, I fell flat on my face.

'Bastard,' I thought bitterly. He didn't have to push me in.

I turned over and rubbed my tender backside. Yeah, that was going to leave another bruise, just when all my other injuries were starting to heal.

I heard someone cough and abruptly looked up.

Oh. Shit.

Almost seven – no, eight - guys were standing in all spaces of the room, just staring at me. Well, this was cosy. I slowly got up, carefully watching all of them and their reactions to my movements. It seemed I had been spending a lot of time on the ground these past few days, because if this was under any normal circumstance, I would have been cursing and yelling by now.

I looked around and found Dean chatting quietly with a short muscular red headed guy. Spencer and Cole weren't to far from him, adding to the eight men I counted. I smiled nervously and tucked my hands behind my back in an awkward manner. I was never awkward when in the company of boys, but these blokes were not boys, they were men who had kidnapped me and were strangers.

They seemed to be watching me closely. They looked as if they were taking in my presence with a lot of attentiveness. I took a breath in through my nose and then let it out through my mouth to calm myself down. If I looked panicked, that would just give them the upper hand in intimidating me.

Dean looked at me, then gestured around the room, "these guys are your new roomies, so don't try anything funny," he warned.

Dean seemed content when I simply nodded. "Alright, here's the plan," he suddenly said. I turned and noticed him staring intently down at some papers. "Greg and Colt will stay here with the girl, no telling if Harson will raid the mansion while we're gone. Spencer and Holden will go to Japan and stay at Central... armed," he explained and glanced at those who were named.

I noticed Spencer grin and cock his gun in the air. Funny how I failed to notice he was even holding one.

I had the feeling Dean just paused for dramatic effect when he was explaining. The guy who had dragged me down here groaned and rolled his eyes.

"You have got to be shitting me, right? Can't Tessa or Alice do it?" he whined, reminding me of Rebecca when she had to stay home and babysit her little brother and sister.

Dean glared. "Can Alice or Tessa fight off Harson's men alone if he decides to pay a visit?" he snapped.

The guy shut his mouth, muttering, "point taken already."

"It better be, Colt," growled Dean like an annoyed Father. "Cole, Adam and Jean will be coming with me to Shibuya to track vital information, than send it back to C.H.Q for Spencer and Holden to analyse and map out. Adam, I'll need you to translate again," he explained.

A tall broad fellow nodded. He had lightly tanned skin, and he was muscular, but not overly bulky like those muscle men I saw at the gym or on television. He didn't have many Japanese features, apart from his dark eyes and matching dark hair. He was handsome and stood tall and proud. He seemed older compared to Dean.

Some of the guys protested their positions, but stopped when Dean raised his hand. Dean didn't seem at all phased that I knew exactly where he was planning on jetting off to. Was he so confident that I would never escape this terrible fate that included this Myer person?

Dean nodded to the red headed fellow when he whispered something to him and started for the door. Cole, the red headed man, (who I guessed was this Jean person,) and Adam following obediently. Spencer was sitting on the corner of the lounges arm chair checking his gun over before getting up and following Dean out. A blond guy, who must have been Holden, glanced at me before following them shortly after.

I sighed. This was way too much excitement for me. The two that were left were obviously Greg and Colt. They didn't look to happy to be here. Tessa had warned earlier when I first met her that babysitting a teenage hostage wasn't their cup of tea and that I should be wary when around them. From the glares I was receiving, I made a mental note to take her warnings seriously.

I laughed nervously and edged away from them.

"Uh, hi... guys?" I waved like an idiot.

Smooth Skye, real smooth. It seemed when in situations with scary men like this, I was looking for Tessa or Alice for a crutch to lean on.

The guy, who I now knew as 'Colt', rolled his eyes and fell into the couch. He ran a hand through his golden brown hair, (oddly similar to my color), and sighed, obviously becoming impatient. The other guy, Greg I presumed, simply shrugged and walked into the kitchen.

"Where did Dean and Spencer go?" I asked.

Colt narrowed his green eyes. "If you must know, C.B.A in Japan for a job."

I gave him a questioning look. "C.B.A?" I asked.

He groaned loudly and put his head in his hands. "Look, can you stop talking. They'll be back tomorrow morning, so until then, shut up and don't give me a reason to blow your head off"

I gulped. "Well, but... umm... where do I go? Do I just stay here?" I asked.

This was another big mistake, apparently.

"How the fuck should I know? Look, I don't give a rat's ass where you go, okay? You can't get away anyways. Do what you want!" he snapped.

Well someone was pissy. Colt was like a firecracker that was constantly being sparked and put out again before eventually, he would blow up.

I nervously stepped back and left the area. I love how everyone clued me in, but why did Dean call me down there just for that? Maybe so I didn't freak out when I saw he and Spencer had gone and left me with these two eggheads.

Okay, not to self, don't insult the guys who are willing to put a bullet through your skull for just breathing to loudly.

I sighed and leaned against a nearby wall as soon as I had left the lounge room. I started remembering my first visit to this house, the first time I had come here and realised I was in serious hot water. It wasn't a particularly nice memory, especially when I had awoken with my clothes missing and gotten the wrong impression.

I also hadn't seen Tessa since the day before and realised that with Dean locking me in my room, the time for me to be transported to this Myer person was drawing closer. I needed to put my plan-desperate into action today when there were only two lazy bastards watching me. I had to take this chance before I was locked away in that room for the remainder of my stay here.


I never thought I'd be standing outside Claudia's bedroom willingly, but this was the only chance I had to obtain freedom. If I was caught, at least I could say I gave it a fighting chance and used all of the resources available to me.

Carefully, I looked around to make sure no one was within my direct line of vision and knocked on the door. I had heard Claudia went out most days and returned in the afternoons, which explained why I had only seen her waltzing around like Queen Shit in the evenings. If she answered her door, I'd just throw out the excuse that I needed something to wear. I didn't get an answer to my persistent knocking, so I gingerly turned the knob and opened the door an inch in case – for some out of the ordinary reason – she was still sleeping.

Although there were sheet covers and clothes strewn across the floor, there was no sign of Claudia when I peeked inside. Glancing behind me and up the hall, I carefully snuck in and closed the door as quietly as possible behind me. I suppose Claudia felt the house was safe enough that she had no need to lock her door – that, and the fact Alice cleaned her room for her when she wasn't home.

"I have one chance," I whispered as I made my way straight to Claudia's white MAC laptop.

As I sat down at the computer I was almost jumping up in cheer when the computer was already up and running. The screen had been dormant until I moved the wireless mouse to the side. She didn't have a password to get into the computer, but as I checked the internet connection I did realise that the wireless internet was accessed through WI-FI, meaning a whole bunch of computers in this house were running through the same network. This didn't help me, because WI-FI usually needed a password to get in.

I was right. Just as I clicked the little internet connection button it immediately asked me for an internet access security code. I toggled down on one of the dropdown selections and looked for any other networks that were running off of this computer. There was only the one network – JeanCram Network. I typed in multiple characters and words, even Dean's name, but the little box just kept popping back up for another access code. This computer was locked down tighter then Fort Knox.

"Damn it!" I hissed under my breath.

Suddenly, the computer made a little, "BWUUUUUP," sound and the screen was blank. Words started appearing across the screen, like when your computer had an emergency shutdown or your modem had a bad virus that screwed up the hard drive.

'Your access has been temporarily denied because of too many unauthorised password inputs, now auto-contacting network supervisor, JeanCram. Your access has been temporarily denied because of too many unauthorised password inputs, now auto-contacting network supervisor, JeanCram.'

This sentence was continuously running across the blank screen. Slamming the laptop shut, I jumped up from the computer desk and, as calmly as possible, exited the room after making sure there was no one around. As I was running down the stairs, I passed by Tessa who was walking down the bottom of the staircase and gave her a brief hello. She looked like she was about to ask me something, but I was running so fast, I left her with a confused glance after my retreating figure. I must have certainly looked suspicious, but whoever that computer was contacting, I knew Dean would soon find out what I had tried to do. I was in so much trouble.

I wished I had never left that restaurant. I missed my Mum and Dad so much, and I missed talking to Beck every night about the little things that pissed me off on a daily basis. I also wished I had grabbed my bag before dashing from the restaurant in Sydney. It had my wallet in there, with pictures and identification, and my phone had photo's-

That's when it suddenly hit me. The jacket I had been wearing - the mini one I had on the day I was kidnapped - when I was in the restaurant I had turned off my cell phone and stuck it into one of the pockets on the inside! My eyes widened as realization hit me. Where had Alice put my clothes?

I ran into the kitchen to find her, the only person in there was Tessa. This must have been where she was headed when I passed her by the staircase.

"Tessa, where's Alice?" I asked, frantic even though I tried to hide it.

"Skye? Shouldn't you be in your-"

I cut her off before she could finish. "Dean let me out... or that other guy, I don't know. But where is Alice?" I asked again, still trying to catch my breath from running.

Tessa blinked and picked up some sandwiches on a tray, whilst biting into one of her own. No doubt they were for Greg who had just come in here not long ago.

"In Dean's study, but-"

"Thanks!" I said and rushed off.

I heard Tessa say something like, "what's up with her today?" but ignored it. I needed to do this fast before Dean was informed about me trying to connect into Claudia's internet.

I ran into the study, not even bothering to knock and sure enough, there Alice was. She was on a stool dusting the corner of the ceiling when I came in. She turned her head and suddenly, put her hand to her chest as she let out a sharp gasp when she saw me.

"Good gracious Lass, yeh scared me half ta' death!" she exclaimed, stepping down off of the stool. "What are yeh doin' in 'ere?"

"Uh..." my voice was suddenly frozen. "I came... to find you, actually. Alice, you know the clothes I was wearing when Dean first brought me here?"

She nodded. "That pretty yellow dress and jacket? Aye, Lass, what about them?"

"Well, I was wondering if I could have the jacket back. Claudia's not here and I'm a little bit cold..." Lie.

She gave me a look. "I put it in the laundry room. If you want I can go get it for you in a moment-"

"No, no. I can manage Alice, you stay here. It's the third door down the hall, right?" I asked.

She again nodded. "Are you sure-"

"Yes, I need to stretch my legs anyways; I was locked in my room for hours you know!" I laughed. Half lie.

She gave me a sad smile as I calmly made my way to the door. I closed the door to Dean's study and bolted to the laundry room. I suppose Alice had been told I was let out of my room, because she didn't ask questions about why I was out and around the house like Tessa had tried to.

My mouth dropped when I reached the room. It was fucking huge!

I heard dryer's going off left and right. I had to plug my ears or risk losing my hearing. I saw clothing bags hanging up and started shifting through the many outfits that looked to have been professionally dry cleaned. My jacket had to have been here, I mean, it's been at least quite a few days since I came here and it had to have been washed at some point.

I managed to find my pale yellow dress and, with it, was my jacket. I could have squealed with delight.

I yanked the plastic bag from the hanger and rushed straight upstairs. I slammed the door to my room and tore the bag open. I pulled my white mini jacket up and fumbled until I found my cell phone. The silver LG dropped onto the bed like an anchor. Good, they hadn't checked my jacket. I just prayed the water hadn't screwed it up when they had washed it.

When the music played, indicating it was turning on, I could have hugged my Father for insisting I buy the protective case to go with the phone. It may have looked tacky, but this very ugly cover may just save my ass.

I waited for the little bars to pop up telling me I had some reception. My face dropped when none did, meaning I had no network reception what-so-ever. I got up on the bed and held the phone up - still none. I jumped up from anger and annoyance, screaming. A bar suddenly appeared up top. My eyes winded and I started jumping up and down with my phone in the air.

God, this was embarrassing.

With each jump, one bar appeared and when I came back down, it disappeared.

'This is stupid,' I thought and got off the bed, walking over to the large window ledge. I tested the lock on the window to see if it was still securely locked. When it opened, I held in my surprise and leaned half my body out. I was about three stories up, but I was desperate. The window had been locked previously, but logic told me that if the door was open, the windows had to be to.

My body was at least half way out, but I refused to look down. Two reception bars suddenly appeared on my phone. In a state of panic, I started punching in my home phone number and area code.




"I'm sorry, but the number you have dialled was incomplete, or incorrect. Please hang up the phone and try again."

I groaned. My service couldn't connect with any home number when I was this far from the main network server. I was about to give up when a thought hit me; Beck had a Vodafone service, which meant she could accept calls from other countries! I quickly punched in her cell phone number with the three extra digits and waited.






"Rebecca! Beck!?"

"Oh my god, Skye, where are you? Your parents are going nuts! Holly's even been out in Sydney asking random people have they seen you! Your picture's all over the news. Where are you? I'll come get you and we can-"

I cut off Beck's rant. I didn't have much time before someone would come looking for me. "I'm somewhere in California, the United States, Beck!"

"'re joking, right?"

I sighed. "No, I'm not. I was kidnapped and-"

"You were what!?"

"Let me finish, Beck!" She mumbled something and sighed, waiting for me to continue. "Look I don't have that much time, tell my parents I'm fine. Tell them I need help, because I'm not sure how much longer I'll be in this location. Has any type of ransom even been made?"

"No, no one's heard a thing. The girls and I have looked all over the city already. No one even saw you leave the restaurant, Skye. It's like you just... vanished."

How could no one have seen me that day? I was practically in the busiest part of the city and multiple people had been walking by that ally Spencer and Cole cornered me in.

I sighed, thinking of the horrible things my parents must have been imagining happened to me. "How are my parents...?" I asked, a little reluctantly.

Beck paused, "well, your Mother's been crying and no one's really heard much from her. Your Father is at the police station almost every day wanting answers and a more thorough investigation, according to the news, anyway."

I was the one to pause this time. I almost forgot I was hanging outside an open window. They were that worried about me? They were putting up a fight to find me?

"Skye, you still there!?"

I shook my head, telling myself I could mourn over my family later, but right now, I needed to concentrate on Rebecca. "Listen, Beck, I need you to tell them where I am. Tell them it's not a ransom kidnapping. Someone payed these people to kidnap me, and-"

Before I could finish I was roughly pulled back into the room. The phone fell from my hand in my shock. Beck was screaming my name until the screen went blank, telling me the call had ended. I realised, after pulling myself together, that Colt was the one who had abruptly ended my phone call and I was in no mood to play the distressed damsel with this moron. Not this time.

"Hey, buddy, lesson on teenagers one-oh-one, never bug me when I'm on the phone!" I growled and kneed him in the-

Well, you get the picture.

The look on his pained and shocked face told me he hadn't been expecting any retaliation as Colt doubled over in pain. I took the chance to run and bolted for the door. I would have gotten away if Greg hadn't been in the fucking doorway. He grabbed hold of me and twisted me around so I was facing away from him, my arm in an odd angle behind my back.

"Thought you might try something like that," he chuckled, sounding very amused.

I saw Colt shakily stand up and produce his gun from his back holster, raising it up as soon as he got within inches of me.

"Night, sweetheart," he growled.

The handle of the gun made contact with my head, and all that came to my vision was darkness. I'd never felt so alone.

Final Words:

Dean: "What mind games is that girl playing?"