Molly moved about the office, cleaning it out. She gathered papers and
personal items into a box on her desk. Her work, which had started with
the best of intentions to help people, had become nothing but a series
of things harming those who mattered to her.
She hoped to sneak out quietly, not bringing too much attention to herself
in the process. There wasn’t anything left for her anywhere -- she'd try
to go home to Ireland. Or, at least, trade her Da’s life for her own,
allowing her family to remain safe.
Tucking a letter to Shane under the corner of the desk blotter, she picked
up the box, ready to slip out into the early morning. Oblivious to her
surroundings, she turned the light in her office off, heading for the
Not hearing or seeing anyone else in the room, she barely felt the prick
of the needle in her arm until the injection had begun to work. The box
fell from her hand and she toppled to the floor next to it. Black shoes
walked past her line of vision and out the door, shutting it behind them.
Leaving her in the pitch black room, alone, slowly becoming paralyzed.
She didn’t even have the strength to call out -- not that there was likely
anyone to hear her anyway.
The door to the office swung open and she tried to move, afraid whoever
it was had come back. The light switched on, the brightness hurting her
eyes, forcing her to shut them.
“Molly?” Shane stepped into the room, looking around. The fallen box
caught his eye long enough for him to see the red hair on the floor next
to it. Hurrying to her side, he knelt next to her. “Molly, can you hear
She nodded slowly, opening her eyes and looking up at him. He lifted
her head, laying it on his lap. “What can I do?”
Her head shook. ‘Nothing’ she mouthed, unable to speak. Whatever had
been injected worked quickly. Her breathing was slowing, becoming labored.
“Don’t. Don’t you die on me.” Grabbing for his cell phone, he dialed
911, talking quickly to the operator, hanging up before she said it was
all right to do so. “Molly, please, hang on. Do you know what happened?”
She licked her lips. “Drugged,” she whispered, barely achieving sound.
“Can’t do anything. I’m so sorry Shane.”
“Consider yourself forgiven,” he whispered back, holding her hand tightly
with one of his own, the other stroking back her hair.
The sirens were just getting close enough to hear them as her eyes slipped
shut, her chest falling for the last time on exhale of a final breath.
“I can’t believe I let her go.”
Jarod looked over at his friend as they watched the car drive into the
distance. “It’s best for you, you know that. She’s got to experience her
own life. He’ll take care of her.”
Shane nodded slowly, heading back inside. “This whole week has been surreal.
Next thing I know, you’re going to tell me you’re not really into all
this bio-tech stuff, that you’re really some undercover agent or something.”
Choking back laughter, Jarod nodded. “Yeah, something like that. Hey,
are you going to be okay?”
“I think so. I’ve spent my whole life taking care of my sister. She’s
gone. One of my closest friends died in my arms two days ago. And the
only other friend I’ve made in years is leaving.” Shane smiled sadly.
“I’ll be just fine Jarod.” He picked up an envelope from his coffee table.
“Oh, our mysterious friend there wanted me to give this to you.”
“Thanks.” Jarod took the envelope, opening it and glancing inside. Three
pieces of paper were inside, two that looked like a sequence of genetic
coding, the other a note. ‘Compare notes with your friend when you
see her again.’ Tucking the note back inside, he looked back at Shane.
“So, you don’t actually believe a word you just said, do you?”
“Oh, no, he did want you to have that.” They both chuckled. “No, I don’t.
I don’t trust that this is all going to be okay. But what choice do I
have? Look, get out of here. I have your cell number, if I decide to end
it all,” he smiled jokingly. “I’ll call first.”
Jarod extended a hand, Shane shook it. Jarod pulled him into a quick
hug. “You better. If you decide to end it, I want to be there. God knows
you’ll have some spectacular ending planned.” With a grin on his face,
Jarod quickly left, knowing he’d hear from Shane again soon enough.
Miss Parker’s heart pounded as she moved down the hall. Still unsure
of what possessed her, she kept one hand tightly on her gun, sliding along
the dark hallway, her back pressed to the wall.
She’d spent the previous couple of days planning. Gabriel’s schedule
was permanently imprinted in her mind, as were the list of ‘approved’
visitors and his ‘guardians,’ the sweepers and other staff who were paid
to watch over him.
Preparation had gone further than that as well. Some snooping around
had led her to only one possible location for Jarod, which she’d tucked
away in the back of her mind ‘just in case.’ She’d bought a carseat and
baby clothes. She had enough cash to get out of the state.
She couldn’t believe she was going to do this.
Pausing at the door to the baby’s room, she looked around. One last precaution,
she’d quietly convinced Angelo to loop the security tapes for her.
Stepping into the room, she moved toward the crib, listening to the familiar
‘Mine’ she always heard when she entered the room.
The silence broke, but not by the small voice she’d hoped to hear. “What
do we have here?” A man’s voice came from the shadows. The owner of the
voice stepped forward; it was a large man she’d never seen before. “Looks
like Mr. Parker was right about someone trying to harm the baby.”
Miss Parker had reached for her gun the second she heard the voice and
she leveled it at the man. “I would never harm that child. Where is he?”
“He’s safe, missy. Why don’t you just put down the gun and cooperate
A blow from behind caught her off-guard and she fell forward, her cheek
making contact with the side of the crib on her way down. Her grip never
loosened from the gun and she turned onto her back quickly, aiming at
the darkness where the shove had come from. Firing once into the dark,
she scrambled to her feet.
“You bitch. That could have hit me!” The second man stepped from the
shadows with an enraged look on his face.
“That was the intent. Where is the baby?” she growled at both men, looking
from one to the other.
At the lack of answer, she made a move toward the door. The first man
lunged at her, narrowly missing her as she leapt out of the way, taking
a blow to the end with the butt of her gun for his troubles. The second
raised his own gun, taking aim.
Almost to the door, she heard the cocking of the barrel and moved. Fast.
Not fast enough. The bullet ripped through her forearm, sending ripples
of agony up her arm into her shoulder and neck. She stumbled into the
wall for a moment before regaining her balance. Raising her weapon, she
fired, only slightly satisfied to hear the groan of pain as the bullet
entered the man’s body.
Not waiting to find out how either man was, she maneuvered her way through
the route she’d planned back to outside, her hand pressed to the bleeding
wound in an attempt to slow the blood until she could wrap it.
When the hell had her father increased security around the baby’s room?
And where was Gabriel? Had someone tipped Daddy to her prowling?
Groaning, she leaned on the side of her car for a moment, hugging her
injured left arm to her chest. The bullet had simply grazed her arm; her
reflexes had been fast enough to ensure the wound wasn’t serious. It only
felt like someone had ripped her arm in two with a hot poker.
Taking a deep breath, drawing the cool night air into her lungs, she
shut her eyes for a moment. Getting out of the Centre had been harder
than she’d anticipated, and even in the running shoes she’d worn, the
trek through the grounds at a run hadn’t been easy. The sound of rustling
met her ears as her eyes opened, and she quickly unlocked the car, slipping
inside. There was no thought put into the motions of inserting the key
in the ignition and turning it on; in fact she barely noticed until she
was in third gear that she was even on the road.
Looking up into her rear-view mirror, she was satisfied that no one was
behind her. As her eyes cast downward, she caught a glimpse of the carseat
in the back. The sting at the backs of her eyes was quickly blinked away
as she refocused on the road, and headed toward the freeway, trying to
steer with her knees as she shifted, as to not jar her arm further.
I can’t go home, she thought, stopping her car at a rest stop
along the freeway. Not if Daddy knows…
Looking down at her arm, she sighed; pulling one of the small towels
she’d stuck in with the few items of baby clothes from the floor of the
back seat. Gritting her teeth, she wrapped it best she could around her
arm, grimacing as the rough material pressed itself into the wound.
Staring out the window, she tried to relax as best she could, to not
let the fact that the carseat in back was empty. Glancing to her left,
resting her forehead on the cool pane of glass, her eyes focused on the
car next to her. The rim of light around the Virginia license plates stood
out against the darkness.
Norfolk wasn’t that long a drive. Especially if she flew just
under radar the whole way.
Turning the key, she pulled out of the parking space, heading back toward
the freeway. If she topped the speed limit by ten miles or so, she could
be there before the sun came up.
Ghent On The Square
“I know it’s best. I just miss her.”
Jarod smiled sadly into his phone. “I know Shane. She’ll be better off
for now, he’ll take care of her.”
There was a pained chuckle on the other end of the phone. “How can you
be so sure of that? Do you know something about him that I don’t?”
Looking down at the pages of code on his desk, Jarod nodded slightly.
“Just trust me Shane. You can trust him. You knew that, or you
wouldn’t have let them go without you.”
The silence stretched for almost a minute before Shane responded. “I
hate it when you’re right.” They both laughed. “So what’s next for you
“I don’t know.” He looked over the code a final time, before putting
it in the drawer next to him. “I haven’t decided where I want to go next.”
“Keep me posted?”
As Jarod began to respond, the sound of insistent knocking filtered in
from his door. He stood to answer, continuing his conversation. “Of course
I will.” Pulling the door open, he locked his gaze on Miss Parker. Taking
in the bruise on her cheek, and the bloodied material wrapped around her
arm, he ushered her in. “Shane, I have to go.” Disconnecting the phone,
he shut the door. “What happened?”
Slipping down onto the couch, her eyes shut. “Much as I’m loath to admit
this…” She looked back up at him. “I need…” She took a breath, her jaw
setting. “Your help.”
End of Episode