Hold on to yourself,
For this is gonna hurt like hell.
Hold on to yourself,
You know that only time will tell.
Hold On - Sarah McLachlan.
Thursday 17th October 1981
At times a merciful dull ache, at others burning agony, but always present – taunting him, weakening him.
Every laboured breath sent a knife through his chest, and as he shivered from the cold and damp he wondered idly if pneumonia would set in.
They had left him alone for a while, and he was at least thankful for that. He tried to use the silence to gather what was left of his strength, preparing himself for when they would return – but it was getting harder.
Long since abandoning all hope of escaping on his own, he had been forced just to wait and endure.
At first he’d been confident that they would find him, that his partner would not rest until he was safe. But now his resolve was weakening, each bout of dizziness feeding the little voice inside of him who wanted it to be over, whatever the cost. Not even his partner was a miracle worker, and there was no guarantee that CI5 would be able to work out the weak clue he’d managed to provide.
The pain increased again as another coughing fit racked his body, and as the man shut his eyes, something his boss had once said drifted out of his memory.
*Sometimes the only way to fight is to survive.*
‘I’m trying, Bodie,’ he thought desperately…
Hey, your glass is empty,
It's a hell of a long way home.
Why don't you let me take you,
It's no good to go alone.
I never would have opened up,
But you seem so real to me.
After all the bullshit I've heard
It's refreshing not to see,
I don't have to pretend
He doesn't expect it from me.
-Good Enough - Sarah McLachlan.
Tuesday 15th October 1981
Doyle sank back into his chair and took a sip of coffee, only to spit it back out and promptly dump the rest in the sink across the room.
"Jesus, Bodie! Did you never learn to make proper coffee?"
"Now why would I when I’ve got you to do it for me?" Bodie reached over and picked up the newspaper he’d discarded earlier, idly thinking about trying the crossword again.
‘Seven down, ten letters - ‘To be licentious’. Re-reading the clue that had stumped him the first time, he changed his mind in disgust and threw the paper back on the table. Bodie refused to give Doyle the satisfaction of asking him, pretty certain that his partner would provide the correct answer with a grin and a put-down.
Doyle grinned as he sat down. "Say that again when I’m properly awake." He leaned forward, rubbing his eyes in an effort to wake up.
"You do look as if you’ve been lacking beauty sleep, sunshine."
"Hey, you try living my life the last few months and still look as good as this." Doyle glanced into the cracked mirror above the sink. Running one hand through his hair he smirked at the man who smirked back at him. Green eyes set off by a slight tan gave him a healthy glow, and the once broken cheekbone enhanced rather than marred the attractive features. Still, just lately his eyes had a tired edge to them. Nothing that a few days rest wouldn’t fix, he decided.
Bodie grinned, acceding the point.
Pulling his attention back to the window he was supposed to be watching, Bodie saw exactly what he had been seeing constantly since the stakeout began – nothing. They had been there for hours, cataloguing who came and went at the house opposite, which had taken all of five minutes, and now boredom had completely set in.
The last couple of months had been unusually hectic, more so for Doyle than for Bodie, and he was tired enough. At least half of CI5 had been working on uncovering an arms dealing ring that had been operating in and around London for the past six months. A rash of crimes involving special types of guns had initially attracted George Cowley’s attention and where Cowley led, his squad were paid to follow. After careful work, they had tracked the guns back to a night-club that the group was using to cover their tracks.
It had been Doyle’s job to go undercover, infiltrating the night club in order to get the proof that they needed. He had started off working behind the bar, settling well into the role, and quickly building up the respect of the club’s owners. Although he had never become part of the gang itself, his favoured position with David and Jason Cane, the brother’s in charge, had given him the freedom to snoop around. After a month undercover Doyle had gathered the proof that he needed.
During that month Bodie, Lewis and Murphy had been working surveillance and backing up Doyle whilst conducting their own investigation. Although Doyle’s cover had never been blown, the knowledge that every night he spent in the club had grated at Bodie. He had missed his partner’s company during the investigation, and had been more concerned for Doyle's welfare than he would have liked to admit, especially after they had found the body of Thomas Mason, beaten to death because he had dared to speak out against Cane’s illegal activities.
Bodie would never reveal just how uneasy he always became when he was unable to personally watch his partner’s back. A slight man in comparison, Doyle was fiercely defensive because his size belied his strength and people often underestimated him, taunting him about his abilities. Bodie knew from personal experience how angry Doyle would get at any hint that his own partner thought he could not take care of himself.
Despite his reservations, the operation had ended safely. Only when it came time for CI5 to officially move in did the Cane’s find out who Ray Doyle really was – and by then it was too late. There was, however, a cloud with the silver lining – in the ensuing firefight younger brother Jason Cane and a few others escaped much to Cowley’s disgust, though the capture of older brother David placated him slightly.
Both Bodie and Doyle had seen how angry Cowley was at losing Jason, and had expected his anger to be directed at them as usual. But Cowley had simply asked for their reports and given them the rest of the day off as reward for their previous hard work. Then he had assigned them this surveillance job, his way of allowing them a few days rest, though personally Bodie would have preferred actual days off to this forced inactivity. Bodie hated surveillance operations, and at first had tried to work out what he might have done to annoy Cowley, but after seeing the relief flicker across Doyle’s face at the assignment, realised just how tired Ray was, and didn’t mention his aversion.
Of course, he had decided that Doyle owed him for that, and even more when he had discovered that not only did he have to keep watch over a house where nothing was happening, but that they were also expected to baby-sit one of the newest agents, Michael Johnson. After a new agent had gone through training Cowley assigned him or her to the quiet assignments at first, shadowing the more experienced teams while they were finding their feet within the Squad. Thankfully, Bodie and Doyle rarely pulled those quiet assignments and so had little to do with the newer agents – until now. Johnson had an impressive build, and an air of menace that could prove useful to CI5, though probably if on show to the general public. Taller and bulkier than Bodie himself, the comparison between Johnson and Doyle was almost absurd, but Bodie would lay odds that Doyle could beat the man in a straight fight.
Still tired despite the previous afternoon off, there was little of the easy conversation between them that was usually present, and although it didn’t really bother Bodie, he decided that he should probably make an effort for Johnson’s sake. It was when turning to begin a conversation that he saw Doyle, his head lolling to one side as he dozed off in his chair. Grinning, he leaned forward, nudged his leg and Doyle shot upright with a start, curly hair flying as he looked for any danger. Bodie laughed.
Doyle slumped down in his chair and yawned. "Sorry, Bodie. Oh, I’m shattered. If the Cow thinks this is supposed to be restful…"
Bodie thought about making some kind of comment about Doyle’s stamina, but at the miserable look on his face took pity on him. "Look Ray, we’re stuck here all night anyway, why don’t you get your head down for a couple of hours?"
"Maybe later, when they're asleep and nothing else is likely to happen."
"Doyle, you’re out on your feet. What good are you going to be if this all blows up tonight? I’d quite like the man who’s guarding my back to be awake while he does it."
Doyle grinned back at him. "Yeah, we wouldn’t want that. Heaven knows you need someone guarding you’re back the amount of trouble you get into." He laughed and carried on before Bodie could retaliate. "Alright, Bodie. Look, I’ll go get us some food, then I’ll come back and get some sleep."
Doyle turned to the blond man sitting quietly in the corner. "Mike, you want anything particular?"
"No, whatever you get is fine."
As Doyle stood and turned to leave Bodie spoke up again. "Don’t I get a say in what I eat?"
Ray grinned and prodded his partner in the stomach. "Not likely. It’s about time I introduced you to healthy food."
Deciding that his coat wouldn't be warm enough, Doyle stole Bodie's black leather jacket off the chair and headed for the door.
At the questioning tone in his partner's voice Doyle grinned again and turned back.
"Take it as a compliment, Bodie. After five years together I've finally got you in clothes I'd be happy to be seen in. This is a vast improvement on the suits that I remember."
Grinning, Bodie pushed Doyle through the doorway, and as his partner started on the stairs, Bodie opened a window and breathed in the fresh night air. He shivered suddenly, not just from the cold. He was well aware that Cowley’s supposedly quiet operations had a nasty habit of blowing up in everyone’s faces, and his instincts were telling him that this would be no different. Bodie wondered just what would go wrong this time.
For the first time that day, Michael moved off of the sofa, putting his hands in his pockets and joining Bodie at the window.
"So how much of CI5 work is like this?"
"What, dull and boring?" Bodie shook off his black mood and turned his attention back to the blonde man standing next to him, determined to make some kind of an effort.
He waited, confident. Three men were more than enough to take care of one person, even if one of them was staying in the car. He smiled, a cold, heartless grin that didn't reach his eyes. The signal, a quiet beeping noise from a coat pocket alerted him that his quarry was about to make an appearance. Signalling the others, he melted back into the shadows and took up his position. Soon. Very soon.
Hey little girl would you like some candy,
You're mamma said it's okay.
The door is open come on outside
No, I can't come out today.
It's not the wind that cracked your shoulder
And threw you to the ground.
Who's there that makes you so afraid
You're shaken to the bone.
I don't understand
You deserve so much more than this.
-Good Enough - Sarah McLachlan
Tuesday 15th October.
Ray Doyle shivered, and pulled Bodie's jacket tight around his body. It was a little big, but with winter setting in and the cold getting more pronounced every day, the extra warmth was welcome. Standard procedure on a stakeout meant that Doyle had to go to the parade of shops safely away from the suspect’s house to get food rather than the ones close by. Knowing that one man would attract less attention than a car, and had already resigned himself to walking through the cold.
For all his taunts of buying healthy food for Bodie, it was late, and only fast food shops would still be open, and even those would soon close. Besides, Doyle was too tired to cook anything, and since the flat they were staying in barely met the requirements of a kitchen, he had decided on a Chinese. Doyle had also decided that after the stakeout was over he would request some of his overdue leave, just two days, and planned to sleep through both of them.
The hairs on the back of his neck rose suddenly, and for the first time since stepping out of the house Doyle felt uneasy. Glancing around, he began to notice his surroundings, and the man who was just stepping out of the shadows around the corner of the house he had come from. Instincts finely honed by years in the MET and CI5 warned him that the man wasn’t just out for a stroll, and neither was the other man who stood over the road from him. With no actual proof he restrained the instinct to draw his gun and, hoping he was wrong, changed direction and walked away from the both of them. The car that was slowly driving down the road towards him was far enough away for Doyle to cross before it got too close, and he stepped into the road as he reached for his R/T to call Bodie.
Even as he took the R/T out of his pocket the car suddenly speeded up, and as the headlights bore down on him Doyle knew there was no way he could get out of the way before he was hit. He threw himself to one side anyway, and that was all that stopped him from going under the wheels. Crashing onto the bonnet of the car, the R/T flew out of his hand as his head slammed against the windscreen and the glass shattered. Stunned by the impact, Doyle barely felt himself get thrown over the top of the car as it swerved to a stop.
Falling in a heap at the side of the road, Doyle heard car doors slamming and tried to move, to get away. The barest movement sent white-hot pain through his head and arm, ending all hope of escape. The darkness that had been playing around the side of his vision descended completely, and with a muffled groan he surrendered to the dark.
Static from his R/T attracted Bodie’s attention away from his conversation, and even as he reached for the radio, the static ended and he could hear the sound of screaming brakes through the open window. Pulling out the R/T, Bodie felt a tingling down his spine.
"3.7 to 4.5"
Looking out of the window, Bodie saw a car stopped in the middle of the road, but most of the streetlights were broken, and it was too dark to see anything more. Though Bodie had seen nothing obviously wrong, one thing came to mind. Ojuka. That day Bodie had known that his partner was in danger, and not just because he had seen Parker drag him inside the house. It was just a feeling, the same growing sense of dread that was crawling up his spine now.
Snapping at Johnson to keep up the surveillance, Bodie took one last look at the window and ran down the stairs, slowing as he reached the front door. Easing it open, Bodie let his eyes adjust to the darkness before he left the house, and directed his attention to the car he had seen from the window.
Taking two silent steps out onto the pavement, he saw three men standing together in the street. Even as a fair haired one carrying a gun caught sight of him, the man shifted position enough for Bodie to see the crumpled body of his partner lying in a heap at their feet. Raising his gun, Bodie snapped off a shot at the man who had already seen him and was even then raising his gun, and the man went down with a cry.
Watching the man fall long enough to know that he was no longer a problem, Bodie snapped his attention back to the other men who were scrambling behind the car. A line of parked cars on his side of the street helped obscure him from their aim, but even as he raised his gun again, a voice rang out.
Bodie didn’t know the voice, or how the voice knew his name.
"One more shot, Bodie, and I’ll kill him now!"
The glint from a gun barrel peering round the edge of the yellow car and aimed at curly hair assured Bodie that the man would be as good as his word, and he hesitated.
Trying to judge whether he could shoot the gun out of the man’s hand, Bodie was completely unprepared for the blow that spread fire through the back of his head. As he fell, he realised that he didn’t even know if Ray was still alive.
Companion to our demons
They will dance and we will play
With chairs, candles and cloth
Making darkness in the day.
-Fear - Sarah McLachlan
Tuesday 15th October
Doyle came to slowly at first, aware of nothing but the fact that he was awake, floating in a kind of limbo, not quite asleep, but not quite awake yet either. Then reality descended like a hammer, and he moaned quietly as pain shot through a dozen different places on his body. At first he thought that the humming sound was coming from inside his own head, and the gentle rocking he could feel just part of the dizziness, but as his head cleared he realised that he was in a car. The instinctive fear that was always present in a situation like this sharpened his senses and he began to try and work out what was happening.
He didn't try to move yet, partly because he wasn't altogether sure that he could, but mainly so that his captors wouldn't know he was awake. There was always the chance that he could learn something important, and maybe surprise them enough to escape. He was laying face down, but from what he could tell he didn't think that he was bound in any way. The pain that shot through his left arm when he tried to move it suggested a broken bone, and he winced, biting his lip to stop from crying out.
Voices reached him through the rushing in his ears, and he tried to hear what was being said, wondering who had grabbed him, and why.
"What the hell did you have to run him down for, you idiot?"
"Oh, give it a rest Marty."
"You could have killed him!"
"You know what Cane said. Bring him in alive. He won't be any use to us dead."
"He was reaching for his gun. Did you want him to shoot you? We already lost Jon to that other guy."
Other guy? Only one person came to mind. Bodie. Doyle's hopes for getting out of this in one piece rose slightly, but then a thought struck him. He knew damn well that if Bodie had seen what was happening he wouldn’t have let them take him, and part of Doyle started to worry about his partner, and what might have happened after he was run down.
The other part of his mind focused solely on escape, and he realised that however dire his chances seemed right now, the fact that they didn't seem to want him dead might give him a chance. The foot firmly planted at his back, keeping him down in the footwell of the car meant there was nothing he could do until the car stopped, and he laid still, gathering his strength and listening as the two men talked about inconsequential things, and the car sped on through the night.
He had no way of telling how long they'd been travelling when the foot on his back was removed, and he thought they might be coming to their journey's end. Though alert for any chance of escape, Doyle was unprepared for the needle that pierced the skin at the back of his neck, and the world slipped away once again.
Wednesday 16th October
Cowley paced in the hospital corridor as the doctors worked on agent 3.7, fuming at the fiasco his seemingly quiet evening at headquarters had turned into. A garbled message from Johnson calling for an ambulance had sent him out of his office and speeding across London. He had arrived at the stakeout house in time to find paramedics loading an unconscious Bodie onto a stretcher, Doyle's R/T smashed in pieces on the ground, and no sign of Doyle.
Johnson's report had been brief, and told him little he couldn't have pieced together from the scene itself. Johnson had abandoned the stakeout at the first gunshot, but by the time he had left the house had only found Bodie lying in the street, and the distant sound of a car that was almost out of sight.
There was nothing Cowley could do but put an alert out for Doyle himself, although the chances that he would be spotted were slim. So now, he had to wait for Bodie himself to wake up, and hope that he could remember what happened. In the meanwhile, Cowley had sent the best of his squad out in the search for Doyle, knocking on doors and trying to trace the car, leaving Cowley to kick his heels in the hospital waiting room.
Cowley spent far too long in hospitals with one agent or another, and it was an aspect of the job that he accepted with an ill-grace, wishing that it could be different, but knowing that injury was just part of the world of CI5. Regardless of his outward manner, and the fact that he seemed to argue with Bodie and Doyle more than anyone else in his organisation, he respected them the most. Not only because they were his two top agents, but because he saw just how close they were, how their differing personalities meshed together to make them an ideal team.
He pushed them hard on purpose, refusing to let them get cocky over their abilities, knowing that if they did, it would only get them both killed. He didn’t want to think of what would happen to the surviving partner if one died before the other - which brought him back to Doyle and his reason for the hospital wait.
Doyle was a strange mixture, capable of extreme bouts of violence and aggression, but within him was such a capacity to care and feel for others, a moral backbone rare in most men suitable for CI5 work. Fiercely loyal, he knew from experience just how far Doyle would go to protect those around him, particularly Bodie, but Cowley would not discount himself from that fortunate group.
For all their clashes, George Cowley knew that Doyle would always come through for him if necessary, it had been proven by the single-mindedness with which both his agents had gone after Barry Martin, and Cowley would never forget the anger he had seen in Doyle's eyes when he himself had been in hospital after being pushed down the stairs. Bodie and Doyle had tracked the man down with an intensity which went far beyond a normal job, and, despite the fact that Cowley risked his agent’s lives every day, he was determined to do everything he could to get the man back in one piece.
The door to Bodie's room slid open, and Cowley stopped pacing as a doctor appeared.
Cowley nodded. "That’s right."
"I’m Dr. Richardson." The two men shook hands before Richardson continued.
"Mr. Bodie's going to be fine. The head injury wasn't serious enough to cause a concussion, but he's only just coming around, and we want to keep him in until the morning for observation, just to be on the safe side."
Cowley nodded, frowning. "Getting him to stay could be a problem. Bodie isn't a fan of hospitals." Cowley didn't bother adding that Bodie would prefer to try and find his partner rather than lie around in hospital doing nothing.
"Oh, I doubt it. He's been put on some powerful pain killers, so I doubt he'll feel up to doing much of anything until the morning. We'll review the situation then."
"Can I see him?"
"Of course, but not for too long, and don't expect much of a conversation."
Shaking hands, Cowley left the doctor to his work and walked into Bodie's hospital room. CI5 agents always had private rooms for security reasons, and someone was already on their way to the hospital to stand guard in case whoever was responsible tried again. Not quite convinced by the doctor's statement, Cowley was already deciding that whoever was sent would not only have to keep people out of the room, but would also have the unenviable task of keeping Bodie in.
At the sound of his footsteps echoing closer in the room, Bodie turned his head towards his boss and opened his eyes.
The slightly confused, almost vulnerable tone in Bodie's voice bothered Cowley - usually Bodie exuded an almost obsessive independence that few people ever got beneath, and yet he wondered if this version of Bodie was caused solely by his injury. Deciding not to push that thought, Cowley returned to his expected role as efficient head of CI5.
"What happened, 3.7?"
For a second Bodie just stared at him, and then he seemed to start and tried to sit up quickly, only to stop short and sink back into the pillow, one hand to the side of his head.
"Ray." A whisper, Cowley almost didn't hear it.
"Doyle, sir. Is he here?"
"No, lad. He's not."
The naïve hope in Bodie's voice made Cowley's heart sink. He was well aware of how close Bodie and Doyle were, at times they seemed almost symbiotic, as good partnerships in CI5 so often were. He hated having to pass on bad news to any agent in his squad, but it seemed worse with these two. Normally so confident about the suitability of the men he teamed, everybody including Cowley himself had had doubts - they were both such strong, opposite personalities that the success of the friendship they had eventually formed seemed almost fated.
Bodie struggled again to sit up, his voice a little stronger, more wary. "Where is he?"
Cowley sat down on a plastic chair by the head of the bed. "We don't know. I've got half the Squad out looking for him, but no-one knows exactly what happened. We've been waiting for you to wake up."
"Didn't Johnson tell you?"
"There wasn't much to tell. He said that you left the stakeout in a rush, he heard a gunshot, came outside and saw a car disappear round the corner. Then he found you lying on the pavement. He didn't see what happened."
The ache in his head and his concern for Doyle overwhelmed him for a second, and Bodie reacted as he always did - he shut his emotions out; ignored them, and returned to the cold, uncaring, consummate professional mask that he tended to convey to those who didn't know him.
Cowley knew him too well, and seeing his defences shutting down, wasn’t surprised at the clinical detachment with which Bodie gave his report, almost as if he were talking about strangers. Unfortunately Bodie knew very little, and when he had finished Cowley stayed silent, thinking.
Bodie let the silence stretch for a few minutes before interrupting Cowley’s thoughts.
"What happens now?"
"Well, we’ve interviewed the neighbours, but as usual, anyone who did see anything has conveniently forgotten it."
Bodie shook his head in disgust. "Bloody typical. If they were the ones who needed us…"
"Go on, sir."
"We’ve got CI5 and the police out looking for the car, but without a make or registration number, finding it is going to take a miracle. And unless Doyle gets away himself, the car is the only clue we have."
The door swung open slowly, heralding the arrival of the nurse. A young, pretty redhead, Cowley allowed himself a small smile at the thought of what kind of mischief Bodie could cause there if he had a chance.
"Sir? I’m afraid you’re going to have to leave now. Mr. Bodie needs his rest."
Nodding, Cowley stood to leave. The expected argument as Bodie claimed good health, wanting to join in the search for his partner was quickly overruled. The painkillers he had been given left him too tired to do any more than voice a weak protest. Then Cowley left the hospital, reassured at least for the moment of Bodie’s welfare, and ready to give the search for Doyle his undivided attention.
He made a mental note, however, to make sure the guard outside Bodie’s room arrived quickly. Even medicated, Cowley didn’t trust Bodie not to wait until he had left and try to sneak out.
Quickly making his way to his car, Cowley drove out of the car park and into the flowing London evening traffic. Heading back to the CI5 headquarters, Cowley picked up the handset and patched himself into the radio frequency.
"This is Cowley. Put me through to 6.2, please."
"Hold the line, sir."
A few seconds silence, and then Murphy’s voice came clearly over the line.
"6.2 here, sir."
Murphy hesitated, and from that Cowley knew what the report would be even before Murphy spoke.
"Nothing yet, sir. We’re trying to trace the route the car may have taken, but it’s proving almost impossible."
"I’ve spoken to Bodie…"
"How is he?"
"They’re keeping him in overnight, but he’s fine. He said that the car had a shattered windscreen and broken bumper."
"That’ll help. I’ll get Anson and Connors to start checking mechanics, see if it’s been taken in for work. There won’t be many open this time of night, and I know of a few that aren’t strictly by appointment, if you know what I mean."
"If you’re talking about a chop shop, Murphy, then say so." Cowley snapped. "I don’t have the time or the inclination to play guessing games."
Murphy’s voice was all business. "Sorry, sir." Then he sounded hesitant. "Mr. Cowley…should we, um, put out a hospital alert in case…in case Doyle turns up there?"
"Are you teaching your grandmother, Murphy? It’s already been done. Cowley out."
Replacing the handset, Cowley frowned and put his foot down, reaching his destination quickly in a display of driving that would have impressed even Bodie.
Marching through the CI5 building, Cowley was satisfied to pass very few agents on the way to his office. He always said that any man standing around at CI5 wasn't doing they're job, and nothing motivated the squad like fear for one of their own. Despite the hour Cowley had called in everyone not on sick leave, and by now every agent would know what had happened.
Pouring himself a cup of coffee, Cowley took a seat at his desk and began his own task in the hunt for Ray Doyle, starting by buzzing through to the records room. Ruth Pettifer answered.
"Miss Pettifer, get me a copy of 4.5’s arrest records, will you?"
"How far back sir?"
"Anyone Doyle sent down who have been released within the last six months."
"It’ll take a while, sir. Maybe an hour to collate the information."
"As quick as you can."
"Oh, and Ruth?"
Cowley took off his glasses and rubbed the bridge of his nose as he spoke. "Any word from the hospital on the man Bodie shot?"
"We’re still trying to identify him, sir."
"What’s his condition?"
"Serious, but not life-threatening. It seems that 3.7’s aim was a little off for once. The bullet went into his chest, and he’s in surgery at the moment, but the doctor’s are confident that he’s going to make it."
A note of surprise entered Ruth’s voice. Cowley wasn’t known for showing compassion to those injured by CI5, especially in such circumstances as these. "Sir?"
"If all else fails, I’m sure he’ll be happy to tell us where Doyle is. I think Bodie would appreciate being given the task of persuading him."
"Yes, sir." Cowley smiled at the amused tone in Ruth’s voice.
"Let me know when we identify him, and send me the arrest information as soon as you have it."
Leaning back in his chair, Cowley closed his eyes, thinking. The fact that Doyle had been abducted rather than simply shot and left in the street gave Cowley the hope that he would be held for some kind of ransom.
Of course, that wasn’t certain, and whoever had taken 4.5 could just as easily have dumped him into a river by now, but in this instance Cowley preferred to be optimistic. If all they wanted was to kill him, a drive-by shooting would have been much simpler.
Shaking himself out of his muse, Cowley started work with his own enquiries, filling time until the information he had requested arrived. As befit a former MET officer with as good a record as Doyle had, it was sure to be a long list.
Peace in the struggle to find peace.
comfort on the way to comfort.
-Fear - Sarah McLachlan
Wednesday 16th October
The night had passed, with little success in finding the missing agent. The list was slowly being narrowed down, far too slowly for Cowley’s liking. The problem was, that most people arrested for anything more than shoplifting vowed revenge on the man who had arrested them. Telling the difference between those just sounding off and those who actually meant to carry out their threats was almost impossible. Still, it gave him something to do as he waited, as the ransom demand that Cowley both hoped for and dreaded had not come.
Dawn had broken across the city, and Cowley had taken a few hours rest away from his office once fatigue had set in, and his vision had blurred too much for him to be able to read the files in front of him. Regular reports revealed nothing new, and Cowley was well aware that unless the kidnappers themselves made contact, their chances of finding Doyle before they were searching for a corpse were slim at best.
Raising himself out of the chair he had settled in, Cowley checked the time, shocked to see that he had slept for longer than he thought. Wearily he made his way back to his office. It was times like these that the huge responsibility he carried on his shoulders weighed heaviest, and as such, the bullet still lodged in his leg ached accordingly, just as it always did when he was troubled.
Tired but still observant, the first thing Cowley noticed when he walked back to his desk was the envelope sat on top of the files he had been searching through the previous night. An envelope that certainly hadn’t been there the last time he had checked. Having reassured himself that it wasn’t likely to blow up when opened, Cowley sliced it with his letter opener, being careful of fingerprints. His face set into stone as the contents fell out onto the desk. On top of a small black leather card holder that he instantly recognised as part of a CI5 ID card, was a Polaroid photograph. Dark, badly taken and grainy, nevertheless Cowley recognised the still form of Ray Doyle, lying on the floor of wherever the photograph had been taken. Reaching for the ID inside the case, even though he knew it would be Doyle’s before checking, he sighed as his fears were confirmed. Cowley picked up his phone and connected through to the R/T network.
"Alpha one to 9.4."
Seconds later Michael Johnson’s tired voice came over the speaker. "9.4."
"Is Bodie awake yet?" Johnson was the agent assigned to keep Bodie in the hospital and everyone else out, and had been sent there only a few hours before to replace the previous guard, whom Cowley had decided would be put to better use out searching for Doyle.
"Yes, sir. He-"
"Fine." Cowley cut in over his agent’s voice. "Unless the doctor’s have strong objections, get him checked out and bring him to HQ. Now." He cut the connection before Johnson had a chance to respond.
It was a little over an hour later when Bodie walked in to Cowley’s office, looking pale but otherwise none the worse for wear from the events of the previous night. After escorting Bodie to the door, Johnson hesitated for a second and then left, discreetly closing the door behind him. Without a word Cowley poured two glasses of scotch and handed one to Bodie, who took it with a nod and sat down heavily.
"Any news, sir?"
Cowley scowled and tossed the photograph and Doyle’s ID across the desk. In the time it had taken for Bodie to get released from the hospital both objects had been checked for fingerprints to no avail. Although C11 were working on a copy of the photograph, analysing Doyle's immediate surroundings, that was hardly likely to provide them with an address. So for now it was back to square one.
"They didn’t send anything else?" Bodie queried, puzzled. "No demands, nothing?" He took a sip from the scotch.
"No, not yet. But this makes me think we’ll hear from them again."
Bodie downed the rest of his drink and absently tossed the empty glass in his hands. "I suppose that’s something, I just wish they’d hurry up. The sooner we find out who they are…"
"Aye. We’re going to have to wait for them to make the next move. I doubt they’ll want to wait long."
As if by magic the phone rang and Cowley reached for the receiver, expecting to hear a report from one of his agents.
"Good morning, Mr Cowley! I trust you slept well last night?"
At the gleeful tone in the unknown voice and its strange words, Cowley realised that the phone call Bodie had been waiting for may have arrived, and switched the phone over to the speaker so that 3.7 could hear.
Seeing the tense, suddenly alert expression cross Cowley’s face as he answered the phone, Bodie straightened up in his chair and leant forward, listening intently as the voice came over the speaker and filled the room.
"Who is this?"
But the voice continued as if Cowley hadn’t spoken. "Tell me, did you receive my package this morning? I did so want it to arrive first class."
Quickly crossing the room, Bodie opened the door and signalled quietly to Betty to get the call traced. Even as he returned to his chair anger rose in his throat. Tempted to supply a few choice words to the voice on the end of the line, Bodie reluctantly forced himself to stay quiet, recognising that Cowley’s calm manner had a better chance of gathering clues than any outburst he could make.
"Yes, I got it."
"Oh, good. After all, we can only have a productive, civilised conversation if both sides are fully aware of the stakes."
At that Bodie slammed his glass down on the desk, unable to contain his rage any longer. "You bastard! If you hurt him…"
"Mr Bodie! I wondered if you were there." The man sounded delighted to hear him, as if the two men were long lost friends reunited at a vicarage tea party or something. "I’m afraid it’s a little too late for that, Mr Bodie, but what happens from here on in is completely up to you."
"Let me speak to him."
"What?!" the man laughed. "I hardly think you’re in any position to expect anything."
At this Cowley broke in. "Until we hear that he’s alive, this conversation goes no further. I won’t negotiate for a corpse."
"A logical point, Mr Cowley. Very well, perhaps this will show my good faith. You’ll have to be patient, we’ll see if we can wake him up."
A click as the receiver on the other end was set down, then came a few sounds that Bodie couldn’t decipher, muffled voices, a moment’s silence, then a hoarse, slurred voice could be heard.
"Is Bodie all right?"
"I’m here, sunshine."
A sigh of relief, then Doyle lowered his voice and spoke quickly, his voice a little steadier. "It’s Cane. Be careful, there’s a…"
A shout drowned out whatever Doyle was trying to say, and though they heard the words, neither Bodie nor Cowley could make them out.
The voices stopped suddenly and Doyle broke off with a cry, then Bodie heard a thud and a dull moan coming faintly over the line.
The voice Bodie now recognised as Jason Cane returned.
"I want my brother released and all the charges against us formally dropped in Court and on record. Once I see David I’ll release Doyle. Don’t keep me waiting."
The phone went dead.
"Damn!" Bodie slammed his hand down on the desk, making the glasses rattle and glaring at the receiver as if sheer force of will could make Doyle appear before him. He took a deep breath and forced himself to calm down, to think.
"I understand him wanting his brother released, but why add the bit about dropping the charges in Court?"
Cowley sighed, suddenly sounding tired. "Och, use your head, Bodie. Once the charges have been dismissed we can’t re-arrest them for the same crimes. We’d have to gather all the evidence again, and since they’re not likely to let another undercover agent get close enough to gather the proof that Doyle did..."
"They’ll get away scot-free." Both men were silent for a moment before Bodie continued. "Alright, how long would it take for you to get Cane released like he said?"
"In reality, a few hours, but I think we could stretch it out for a day or so before he gets suspicious."
"It doesn’t give us long to find Doyle. Even if we do release his brother Cane would probably kill him. Anyway. He’s not going to just let Ray go."
"Release the man who won his confidence and then betrayed him? I doubt it, especially considering what they did to that Mason man."
A knock on the door and the technician, Phillips entered.
"Did you get the trace?"
"Only a rough area, sir." Phillips walked over to a large-scale map of Britain pinned to the side wall of Cowley’s office. A single red pin represented the approximate location of the CI5 offices, and as Bodie and Cowley joined him at the map, Phillips swept a pencil up from Cowley’s desk and began drawing.
"We couldn’t pinpoint the exact location," Phillips repeated, "but thanks to that phone call, we can certainly narrow the search area down." Indicating the rough circle he had drawn, Phillips tapped the map with the pencil again for emphasis. "The call came from somewhere out in the Home Counties; Surrey, or Kent perhaps, maybe a little further out. It’s a help, but it still leaves a good hundred square miles of land to search."
Cowley nodded thoughtfully. "Aye, that makes sense. It’d be far enough out of the city to give them some cover, but it’s not so far that they would still have been travelling when we put out a search for the car."
Bodie fidgeted impatiently, anxious to be out searching for his partner rather than standing in Cowley’s office discussing theories. Noting his agent’s movement, Cowley snapped back into 'ruthless old bastard' mode as Doyle himself had once called it. He knew from experience that was the best way to hurry his agents up and get results, although he had a feeling that in this instance there would be no fear of Bodie being slack in his work.
"You still here, 3.7?" he nodded his head towards the office door. "Go on, get out there and find 4.5, do what you’re paid for. But watch who you talk to. If word gets back to Cane that you’re close he might panic."
Bodie nodded grimly at the unspoken implication in that statement and left without a word with the focused, intent look in his eyes that Cowley had not often seen, but knew well-enough to understand. Bodie would stop at nothing to find his partner, even more determined because it was Ray Doyle he was searching for and not just an unknown face in a CI5 file. Cowley knew that if anyone could find 4.5, it was Bodie. And God help Jason Cane when he did.
All the fear has left me now
I'm not frightened any more
It's my heart that pounds beneath my flesh
It's my mouth that pushes out this breath
And if I shed a tear I won't cage it
I won't fear love
And if I feel a rage I won't deny it
I won't fear love.
-Sarah McLachlan - Fear
Wednesday 16th October
"…don't keep me waiting."
Ray Doyle barely heard the bell chime over the rushing of his ears as Cane slammed the phone down. The pistol that slammed across his temple had stunned him for a few seconds, knocking him to the ground and cutting off his message to Bodie. Even as his vision cleared he could feel blood flowing from the wound. Doyle was pretty sure that the gun had been his, and anger at being hit with his own weapon gave him the strength to roll over and push himself upright, leaning against the wall for support.
Blood began to trickle into his eye, and as Cane turned angrily towards him he reached up and wiped it off, his hand coming away stained red.
Kneeling down next to him, Cane wound a hand through brown curls and slammed Doyle's head back against the wall.
"What did you say to them?" he demanded. "You gave them a name. Who's? A grass?"
Doyle said nothing.
Doyle looked up at Jason Cane, took in the sandy fair hair and anger in the sharp features and shook his head.
Cane slapped him across the face, and his head connected with the wall for a second time.
"Don't mess me around, Duncan." Cane snarled, referring to the name Doyle had used while undercover. Realising that, he laughed bitterly. "Ray Duncan…" he muttered, staring vacantly into the distance. "…even lied about that."
As Cane seemed to drift off into his thoughts, Doyle looked around him carefully, trying to work out whether or not escape was possible. While Cane was content to daydream, the two men standing by the only doorway watched him constantly, and Doyle quickly realised that while they were waiting there was little he could do.
The room spun slightly and he rested his head back against the wall, still unsteady because of the drugs in his system. Swallowing, he took a few deep breaths and his vision steadied again. His movement brought Cane out of his muse, and the man stood up and backed away a little. The instinctive reaction brought a small smile to Doyle's face. It seemed that despite the situation Cane was wary of him, and that was something he just might be able to twist to his advantage. He'd spent long enough undercover at the club to get some idea of what made Cane tick, and Doyle was too well aware that that knowledge might be the only thing to get him out of this in one piece.
Cane continued to stare at him for a few minutes, then smiled suddenly, and held out his hands in a gesture of regret. "Well, I can't stand here natterin' all day. Got things to arrange."
"Like what?" Doyle couldn't quite hide the sneer of contempt in his voice, despite knowing that angering this man wasn't really a good idea.
Eyes narrowed slightly, but the bright and cheery tone continued. "Places to go, people to see. Skipping the country takes a lot of organising, and I wouldn't want to forget to say goodbye to anyone." Dismissive, Cane started walking from the room.
"You must be crazy." Doyle threw after him. Cane stopped and walked back to face him, one eyebrow raised in question. "Do you really think Cowley's going to give up an eight month operation and let you all leave the country just to save me?"
"Yeah, I do. You forget, Doyle. I've had time to find out all about you and your partner. You expect me to believe that Cowley would let one of his best Alpha Squad agents die for the sake of a conviction? And even if he would, if Cowley loses you he'll lose Bodie as well."
Cane knelt down and held Doyle's jaw firmly in one hand, staring deep into green eyes, his voice quiet and threatening. "I've done my homework, Doyle. Replacements are very expensive."
Doyle refused to be cowed in spite of the unease the man's words had created, and while his smile matched Cane's in size, Doyle beat him out of sight for lack of feeling.
"Shall I tell you what's going to happen, Cane?"
Cane rested back on his heels and raised his eyebrows, waiting.
"It really doesn't matter what happens to me. CI5'll never make deals with someone like you. But I can promise you this. Bodie will find you. If you're really unlucky he'll find you by himself, and if I'm dead they'll never find enough of you to bury. Catch him on a good day, and you'll get off lightly. Even so, you're still going to end up rotting in jail, just like you're miserable brother."
Doyle was well aware how close Jason and David had been. In a strange way they were as close as he himself was to Bodie, even if his friendship meant more than some overdeveloped family loyalty. His words had been meant to anger Cane, to goad him into making a move that Doyle could use to get away.
It worked. Enraged at the insult to his brother, however slight, Cane swung at Doyle, but this time he was ready. Blocking the swing with his good arm, Doyle kicked out, catching Cane squarely in the chest and sending him a good few feet across the room. Pulling himself to his feet, stubbornly ignoring the pain in his ribs, Doyle turned to face the first of Cane's 'muscle', whose names he still hadn't figured out.
The first was large, and solidly built, but Doyle knew from experience that most men that size relied solely on brute strength rather than the skill six years in CI5 had given him, and he easily blocked the rather clumsily thrown punch. As it connected with his shoulder he acknowledged the strength behind it, well aware of the damage it could have caused had it landed elsewhere.
Returning it with one of his own, the man staggered back into his friend, and both crashed to the floor. For a second Doyle considered going for his gun, but not altogether sure where it was, he made for the door. Finding himself in a sitting room, its middle-class furnishing and polished ornaments seemed absurd considering what the house was being used for. All this he took in at a dead run - already he could hear angry voices behind him as his captors gave chase.
Almost to the door at the opposite end of the room, the floor seemed to tilt beneath him and he stumbled, suddenly dizzy. Going down hard on his hands and knees, he knocked over a coffee table as he fell. A cup shattered as it hit the ground, and lukewarm coffee splashed out over the cream carpet. Doyle gritted his teeth against the pain that shot through his arm and forced himself up.
As it turned out, even that few seconds delay was too long, and before he could properly regain his footing the two men descended on him. A kick to already painful ribs knocked him over and onto his back, and he was hauled back to his feet before he could retaliate.
Each man held a firm grip on one arm, and Doyle was pushed roughly back into the bedroom he had just left. Shoving him against the wall, neither man eased up the grip on his arms, the world around him still not quite stable. Cane faced him, anger plainly written over the hard face, while one hand rested on his chest where Doyle had kicked him.
"Bastard." Cane spat out. "Did you really think you could talk your way in here, spy on us, and we'd do nothing? My brother is in prison because of you. Because I trusted you."
Doyle stared defiantly back at him, still trying to come up with a way out. Even so, he registered the guilt Jason Cane was feeling that it had been he who had given Doyle the job at the club, he who was so open with the man who had landed his brother in prison. In no mood for sympathy, Doyle recalled a similar situation he had faced in the past, albeit without the guilt, and replied accordingly.
"Was a pleasure."
At that Cane snapped, and advanced upon him. Only then did Doyle realise just how big a mistake he had made in mocking this man.
A fist in the stomach and Doyle doubled over, gasping, but the man at either side forced him up straight, just in time for Cane to hit him across the face, then a second time, with surprising strength for such a lean man. Coming in close, Cane kneed him viciously in the groin and white pain flashed across his eyes. He hung weakly between the two men, and for a long second thought he would pass out.
Slowly the pain receded slightly and he moaned as he opened his eyes, his vision blurry. They chose that moment to release him, and unable to stand under his own power, Doyle collapsed to the floor yet again. 'At least they can't knock me down again', he thought hazily.
Unfortunately, his new position allowed for a good kicking. As they laid into him he curled inwards, trying to give them as small a target as possible. The beating continued long after he was unconscious.
Leaving CI5 headquarters, Bodie felt a moment of uncertainty. For all he had fumed in Cowley's office, wanting to be out and doing, now he was out he really had little idea of just where to start.
In spite of their enquiries, no-one seemed to know anything about the yellow car that had been seen leaving the stakeout. He had privately damned Johnson for not at least getting a license plate number, even though he knew the feeling was unreasonable. He himself had been closer to the car than Johnson, and had seen nothing.
Almost every possible lead had been followed up and discarded even before the ransom call, and the only new thing that had revealed was that Jason Cane was behind it. A vague area that the phone call came from was a start, but the range covered almost a hundred miles of part urban suburbs and part green belt land. Visiting every single home in that area was out of the question, and even if they did and somehow managed to find the right house, unguarded questions would likely do Doyle more harm than good.
Sliding almost automatically behind the wheel of his car, Bodie drove out to the club. The building had been cordoned off and deserted ever since the raid, and searched through a dozen times since, but it was the closest link he had to Jason Cane. Maybe, he thought, just maybe he'd find something that would help. Even if he didn't know what he was looking for.
A twenty minute drive through the city helped calm him slightly, although several other driver's lost their faith in the famous British reserve, which they had mistakenly thought extended to driving style.
Pulling up outside Heroes, Bodie finally slowed down to greet the solitary police guard stationed outside before driving into the car park. The outside a dull grey, Bodie reflected not for the first time that the building looked more like a storage warehouse than one of the most successful clubs in London, but successful it had been. Only the bright neon sign displaying three gaudy cartoon figures, Spiderman, Superman and Asterix or something, Bodie wasn't sure, provided a hint of the layout inside.
A key provided by the guard gave him entry into the night-club, and Bodie made quickly for the offices at the back of the building, paying little attention to the star lights embedded in the ceiling or the lava lamps dotted around the tables, out of date even for 1981.
The offices were plain and conservative, in stark contrast to the cheerful façade of the club itself. Making straight for the expensive antique desks, Bodie settled into the seat and started searching through the drawers.
There was very little to search through, as most of the paperwork had been removed for further investigation soon after the raid, but he looked anyway, hoping for a name that they hadn't heard of or an address they could check out, anything that would give him a lead on where Doyle might be.
Half an hour later the desks looked considerably worse for wear. Having found nothing in the drawers, he'd proceeded in taking the panelling apart, in case anything had been hidden elsewhere. Now each desk reminded him strangely of the desk they had picked up for Cowley, which had at first been in pristine condition. Ten minutes after they collected it of course, the desk had been good for nothing but firewood. Still, all in a good cause, he had decided as they had gone to face Cowley. This time the damage barely crossed Bodie's mind. Nothing mattered if it might help him find Ray.
So now Bodie sat on the edge of the stage, surrounded by the few things he had managed to find. A scrap of paper with a phone number, a photograph of a younger looking Jason Cane standing with an older man, and half a dozen of the night-club's business cards. All in all, nothing useful.
Uselessly angry, Bodie crumpled the photograph up in his hand almost without realising. There was nothing here. He'd known there'd be nothing here even before he arrived, but some small part of him had hoped. This whole thing was a problem, a puzzle he had to solve, but he was no good at them, never had been. Ray was the thinker, always better at figuring out who had done what to whom, but now it was Bodie's turn, and he was playing for the most important prize of all.
Never one to underestimate himself, he knew he wasn't stupid, and he could solve the cases that came to CI5 as well as anybody else, but during their partnership he had come to rely on Doyle's insight, on the knowledge he had gained in the police force. Now he had to work on his own. There were no leads, nothing to suggest where Cane was holed up, or where he was holding Doyle.
Sighing, Bodie shook himself out of his melancholy. Sitting around feeling sorry for himself wasn't going to do Doyle any good - besides, it wasn't Bodie's style, he left the black moods to his partner. Bodie sneezed at the dust that had settled on the stage, stood up and walked out of the building.
Mary walks down to the water’s edge
And there she hangs her head and finds herself faded
A shadow of what she once was
She said how long have I been sleeping?
And why do I feel so old?
Why do I feel so cold?
My heart is saying one thing
But my body won’t let go.
-Sarah McLachlan - Mary
Wednesday 16th October
Breathing was painful. He’d been semi-conscious for a while, and vaguely remembered throwing up when he’d come to. So far he’d made no attempt to move, at first because he wasn’t sure who was in the room with him, and now because it hurt too much. Of course, it was only now that Doyle was able to concentrate enough to think straight, and he’d lain in a pain-induced haze ever since coming round from the beating.
Being fully conscious had a down side, though. Now a dozen different pains were all clamouring for his attention, and as he opened his eyes the room span and he swallowed hard, fighting nausea again. Doyle wondered whether he’d feel better if both eyes were open – not that it mattered – the left eye was swollen shut, and resisted all attempts to be opened.
At a sudden surge of pain he realised he was lying on his broken arm, and his weight was making it worse. Only when he tried to shift to a slightly more bearable position did he realise that his arms were tied behind his back, and a painful manoeuvre told him his ankles were bound together as well.
Even that small effort exhausted him, and Doyle rested his head back against the cream carpet he was lying on, trying to think. Painful experience told him at least one rib was broken, maybe more, and his arm was only going to get worse. Even without that he was a mass of bruises, which were going to make moving almost impossible once they started to develop. All of which meant, if he was going to get out of here, it would have to be now.
At the thought of escape Doyle righted himself with difficulty. The pain that shot through his ribs made him gasp, and it was a full minute before he could get his breathing back under any kind of control that didn’t include excruciating pain.
His own body was mocking his hopes of freedom, and regardless of how strong-willed he was, Doyle was only too well aware that he might not be physically able to do anything to help himself. He certainly wasn’t up to another fight – not that he’d been any use in the previous one, he conceded ruefully. He’d made a big mistake in goading Cane like that, and had seriously underestimated the damage that had been done first by the car, then by the shot they’d given him.
If he was going to have any chance of getting himself out of this, Doyle knew he would have to rely on cunning rather than strength – get out before Cane knew he was gone.
Doyle looked around him, taking an interest in his surroundings for the first time since they’d brought him here. The style of the bedroom matched what little he’d glimpsed of the lounge a few hours before. The room had the outward appearance of the respectable middle classes - pink loo-paper and roast on Sunday’s. The décor of the house was utterly out of place with the use it was being put to, though Doyle wasn’t quite sure why that was his immediate reaction. Just because the shows on TV were all abandoned farms and disused warehouses; he’d learned differently through his time at CI5, and real life wasn’t quite as clean cut as that.
The Bieberman snatch had involved a suburban home, as had the flat that bastard Pendle had dragged him to after the restaurant bombing, a case which held uncomfortable similarities to this situation. No handily placed telephones this time, though. Nor did he have a cigarette lighter in his back pocket. The previous girlfriend he’d carried it around for had long since become an ex, and the lighter had gone the same way.
Nothing in the room shouted ‘escape here’ at him in neon letters, and Doyle realised in alarm that part of him was already giving in, resigning itself to the good chance that he would die in this room. Looking around again, Doyle took in the bed, side-table with lamp and fruit bowl and armchair without inspiration. He knew that Bodie would be searching for him, a search that would likely be successful if he’d acted on the clue Doyle had managed to give him. As a helpless hostage was not how he intended his partner to find him. Of course, his pessimistic side quickly pointed out that if Bodie hadn’t heard the hurried message, then the odds of his partner coming to his rescue were a lot longer.
The realisation that Bodie himself was in danger if he hadn’t worked out the message followed swiftly, and he looked around him yet again, desperate. There had to be something. Fruit bowl… lamp… chair… bed… The lamp. That was it. Across the room on a mahogany table stood a small lamp. It was a long shot, but just maybe he could unscrew the bulb and use the glass to cut through the ropes.
The distance between Doyle and the lamp wasn’t far, four or five feet at the most, but his heart sank at the distance considering the state he was in.
Scowling at himself, Doyle forced away the doubts and tipped himself onto his side, wincing as the pain increased and jagged white lights danced behind his tightly shut eyes. Inch by agonising inch he started his journey, cursing each time he moved and the lamp didn’t seem to get any closer. Doyle forced himself to keep moving though, despite wanting more than anything to rest his head and get some sleep.
He’d been through this before with Arthur Pendle, fought with broken arms and cracked ribs. He’d come back from being technically dead when no-one had expected him to live, let alone be fit enough to get back on the Alpha Squad again. He was damned if he’d let a third rate little shit like Jason Cane be the one to finally take him down.
He had to keep moving.
He had to.
Wednesday 16th October
He’d left the club and checked in with base, only to be told that there was still no news. Not that he’d expected any, otherwise he would have already heard over the R/T. But he’d called in anyway.
With no leads and nothing to go on, he’d spent the next hour driving around London, hunting out all the snouts he could find. By the time the clock hit three he’d spoken with every one they’d used during the operation on the Cane’s, and a few they hadn’t. No-one knew anything useful, and each one had had to completely convince Bodie of that before he’d leave.
It had been a long shot, but one that hadn’t paid off. The only reason Jason Cane and his friends were still at large was because CI5 had been unable to get a fix on where they were holed up. All the informants had been questioned just after David Cane was arrested, and none of them had known anything then, either. Considering they’d already grassed on him, it was in all the informant’s interests to see Jason Cane off the streets, so Bodie was fairly sure they were telling him everything they knew – which was precisely nothing.
It was while talking with the last informant he could think of that Bodie got a call from Base requesting he return immediately and report to Major Cowley. He left without a word, and was back on the road within seconds.
Arriving back at HQ Bodie had headed straight for Cowley’s office, walking straight in without bothering to knock. Someone was already in the office with Cowley, one of the technicians, but rather than berating Bodie for barging in, Cowley stayed silent for a moment before nodding to the technician to leave.
Bodie remained standing, ignoring Cowley’s gesture for him to take the newly vacant seat.
"Sit down, man. You’ll not need to go running off right this second."
A second’s hesitation and Bodie sat down with a barely audible sigh.
"No-one’s heard anything?"
Cowley shook his head.
"Then what the hell was I called in for?"
"Because I said so." Cowley snapped back. "I wasn’t under the impression that I had to justify my decisions to you, Bodie?"
"No, sir." He muttered.
Cowley’s tone softened slightly. "We’ve had the lab reports back on the phone call and ransom note."
He smiled slightly in approval as Bodie visibly perked up, sitting up straight and leaning forward in his chair. However distracted and worried 3.7 was, Cowley was certain he’d pull himself together when the time came. In response to Bodie’s expectant gaze, he reached into a file on his desk and brought out a blow-up of the photograph they’d received that morning. Bodie’s face tightened as the picture was placed in front of him, but said nothing.
The larger version of the picture was fuzzier than the original, but even so, contrasts in shape and colour were more obvious. Trying to ignore the form of his partner, Bodie’s attention was drawn to a band of light than spanned across the middle of the picture, highlighting Doyle’s face.
"Sunlight. According to the technician’s, the picture was taken just after dawn rose. That light is coming in through an east-facing window. The Polaroid was taken using a flash, and that has brought out the sunshine enough for us to see. We’re lucky. Half an hour earlier and it would still have been dark."
Bodie frowned. "So how does that help?"
"They think they can work out roughly what time the photograph was taken because of the sunlight. Once they know that we can work out how long they were travelling for. That should help narrow down the search area slightly."
"Good." Bodie nodded. Finally it seemed like they were getting somewhere. Even if he couldn’t rush off to find Doyle just yet, it was starting to seem more likely that he would find him before it was too late.
"Not much. The cream carpet and flowery wallpaper suggests a house rather than a warehouse or office, but most of Surrey is made up of towns and homes, so that’s no help for now, though it might prove useful after we’ve narrowed it down more." Cowley looked up suddenly as a thought struck him. "Any luck at the club?"
"No." Bodie spat the word out in disgust. "All I found was a photo of Jason and his father, and a phone number. Turns out it’s just an old hotline number people rang to get tickets to ‘Heroes.’" He paused a moment before continuing. "Oh, and I spoke to Tony Jordan and some of the other grasses. No-one knows anything."
"What about Cane’s phone call?"
Cowley sighed, and pulled out a thick folder of stapled paper. "Fifteen pages to analyse less than two minutes as usual."
The thoroughness of the Phonetics Department was a standing joke in CI5, and something Cowley commented on every time he was given one of their reports. Such comments had become such an accepted part of day-to-day life in the squad that they no longer required a response, and as such Bodie stayed silent.
"Not that they tell us very much anyway. They identified four distinct voices on the tape, including Cane and Doyle, which tallies with your account of the abduction, Bodie."
Bodie shifted in his seat and ran a hand through his hair. "What do you mean, sir?"
"Well, you said you saw three men standing over Doyle, and that the car was empty. You shot one of them, which leaves two that got away. Those two, plus Cane and Doyle makes four voices on the tape. Unfortunately, there are no other clues about their location. No trains, no background noise, not even a radio station. All that tells us is that it’s a quiet neighbourhood, possibly a suburb."
"Could they work out what Doyle was trying to say?"
"No. Apparently all four voices started talking at once, and they’ve just drowned him out."
"Damn. Is there nothing else?"
Cowley hesitated before continuing, painfully aware how much his next words would only increase the concern Bodie was already feeling. Nevertheless, Cowley flicked through the paper until he found the sheet he was looking for - Bodie needed to know.
"From Doyle’s voice they’ve been able to guess at his physical state at the time of the phone call. Nothing definite, Bodie, but from the way he was slurring his words, they think he was either drugged, or in physical pain. And the sound at the end of the phone call when Doyle broke off they think was a body hitting the floor."
Bodie sighed and rubbed his hands across his eyes. He didn’t reply to Cowley’s announcement. It was nothing he hadn’t already imagined, but having his fears confirmed as fact was not what he’d hoped would happen when he’d raced back to HQ.
At the tired look on 3.7’s face, Cowley spoke again.
"Why don’t you go home and get some rest, Bodie? There’s nothing you can do here until we get some more information."
But Bodie shook his head. He wouldn’t be able to sleep properly until Ray was safe, he knew that, so going home would achieve nothing, no matter how tired he was, or how much his head still ached from the assault last night.
Standing, Bodie walked to the door of Cowley’s office before turning to face him again. "I’ll go through the files we’ve got on Cane and his group. Maybe I can work out who the other two voices were. It might help."
Cowley sighed as Bodie shut the door behind him. There was no point arguing with the man, not now.
Bodie checked the clock on the wall every few minutes as the afternoon wore on, but time passed slowly all the same. He’d been trawling through the records of the previous investigation into the Cane’s ever since leaving Cowley’s office, but had still found nothing that might prove useful.
Working in Records was not something Bodie enjoyed at the best of times. In fact, he actively avoided Records Duty as often as swapping favours and sweet-talking Cowley would allow. On the rare occasions that injury forced it upon him he complained constantly, and the whole of CI5 could be heard to heave a sigh of relief when he was finally declared fit for active duty again.
Nevertheless he’d worked tirelessly all afternoon. The only concession to his worsening headache and the restlessness of the small Records Booth was his relocation to the relative comfort of the Rest Room, but it hadn’t helped much. CI5 paperwork was astoundingly thorough, and almost three hours after he’d begun, a tired and frustrated Bodie was barely halfway through. At one stage he had considered getting help from some of the Records staff, but this was too important, and fear that they might miss something vital kept his search a one man quest.
Engrossed in one particular file concerning David Cane’s dealings with a brokerage firm, Bodie never heard the rest room door creak open. Cowley’s hand tapped on his shoulder and Bodie jumped, dropping the file and scattering papers across the floor.
Swearing, he turned to face his boss. About to comment on the need for Cowley to carry a bell with him, he took in the man’s appearance and immediately altered his words.
Bodie was not the only person to be visibly affected by Doyle’s abduction. In the past hours Cowley had seemed to almost age, looking and acting tired and despondent. That appearance had changed again, and Cowley was now standing straighter, with an alertness in his eyes that hadn’t been there that morning.
"You know something." Bodie demanded. "What is it?"
Cowley smiled. "Kevin Harvey." At Bodie’s puzzled frown he continued. "The man you shot last night, Bodie. He’s conscious and out of danger. The Doctor’s say we can talk to him."
Bodie was out of his chair and walking past Cowley down the corridor almost before Cowley had finished speaking, the files long since forgotten.
The drive to the Hospital was silent, but a feeling of cautious expectancy had settled over the two men, now that they finally seemed to be getting somewhere.
As always, a nurse was waiting at the Hospital entrance to greet Major Cowley, and they were quickly shown up to the Ward. There they were met by Doctor Ellis, a grey haired man both men knew from previous visits to the Hospital.
"You must understand, Major Cowley; Kevin Harvey has just undergone a serious operation, and though stable, his condition is still serious. I wouldn’t let you see him at all if your Miss Pettifer hadn’t made it absolutely clear how vital it was."
"I’m grateful for the indulgence Doctor Ellis, but I’m afraid we don’t have a lot of time. If you could just tell us which room he’s in?"
"Room Six," Ellis hesitated. "But I’m not sure you should see him without a member of staff present."
Cowley frowned. While he had no reason to suspect anyone in the Hospital of involvement with the Cane’s, he couldn’t take any risk that Cane might discover they were looking for him, and the fewer people who knew why they wanted to speak to Harvey, the better. Thinking quickly, he began speaking and turned away from the direction of room six, walking slowly down the corridor towards a small waiting room. In turning to face him, Ellis put his back to Bodie, who silently walked away in search of Kevin Harvey’s room.
"Tell me, what kind of condition is Harvey in…?"
Cowley kept the small talk flowing for ten minutes before Bodie quietly returned, looking triumphant. Making their excuses the two men left the Hospital, and Cowley never asked how Bodie convinced Harvey to talk to them. It wasn’t until they reached the car that Bodie spoke, slamming the car into gear and pulling away as he did so.
"Caterham. 26, Boundary Road. They’re all holed up there."
Cowley picked up his R/T. "Alpha One to Base."
"Go ahead, Alpha One."
"Assemble a team. Murphy, Lucas, McCabe and Anson. I want them on standby, ready to move in ten minutes."
Hanging up, Cowley turned his attention back to 3.7. "Did he say how many people are there?"
"Four, like we thought. Cane, Doyle and two more."
As requested, Murphy and the others were all gathered in the briefing room when Bodie and Cowley returned to CI5 Headquarters. When the call had gone out they had guessed it was something to do with Doyle, and were waiting impatiently for news. Johnson was with them, having been talking to Anson when the call came in.
They listened as Bodie outlined what they had learned, and Cowley briefed them on the coming operation, then they all headed out to their respective cars.
On the way down through the building Johnson caught up with Cowley.
"Could I come along, sir?" he asked. "I know I’m new, but I was there when this first happened, and I’d like to help."
After a second Cowley nodded.
"Thank you sir. I’ve just got to grab my jacket, I’ll be one minute." With that, Johnson ran off down the corridor.
As it turned out Johnson was more like five, and despite apologising when he finally did arrive at the cars waving his jacket, Bodie’s anger was plain to see.
The drive from the centre of London to Caterham in Surrey was almost an hour and a half, possibly more in rush hour traffic.
Bodie made it in an hour.
The ice is thin, come on, dive in
Underneath my lucid skin the cold is lost, forgotten.
Hours pass, days pass, time stood still
Light gets dark and darkness fills my secret heart forbidden.
I think you worried for me then
The subtle ways that I gave in but I know you liked the show
Tied down to this bed of shame
Try to move around the pain
But your soul is anchored.
-Sarah McLachlan - Ice
Wednesday 16th October
Boundary Road was a small cul-de-sac in a suburb of Caterham, and had Bodie been there for another reason, he knew he would have enjoyed hiking through the surrounding hills.
The sun was setting, and Cowley had decided to wait for fifteen minutes in the hope that the coming twilight would help to mask their approach. While Bodie could see the logic in that decision, he hated the delay, and sat with his hands wrapped around the steering wheel, knuckles white with tension.
Cowley and the others spent the time going over plans for the assault on the house, well aware that since they had no clues as to the layout of the building, everything would depend on split-second decisions made once inside.
Still some distance away and well out of sight of the target house, Bodie paid little attention to Cowley's impromptu briefing. He knew exactly what would happen once inside the house, and exactly what he had to do.
A profound sense of relief had settled over him since they'd discovered Cane's location. No longer restless, Bodie sat ramrod straight and utterly still. All his energy was focused on the coming operation, and he had nothing to spare on idle chatter or nervous fidgeting. But mixed in with the relief was fear. Fear of what he was going to find once he was finally re-united with his partner - and that he might already be too late.
Finally the sun set, and Cowley decided that the time was right. Lucas had already walked past the house and back up a path at the end of the road, and it seemed that luck was on their side. The house was detached, set slightly back from the road and surrounded on all sides by a six foot privet hedge. They'd be able to get right up close to the house before they risked being spotted - something that cheered Lucas immensely. Bodie was not the only member of CI5 worried for Doyle's safety once they had been seen.
They kept to the shadows as they advanced; even after sunset it paid to be cautious. Most of the squad had done this hundreds of times before but the tension was still running high, even more so because it was one of their own.
The sun had set at the front of the house, so Bodie headed for the back, where the photograph must have been taken at dawn. Murphy moved with him, taking Doyle's place as his partner until Doyle had returned, and was fit to watch Bodie's back himself. The patio doors leading in from the garden were an ideal point of entry, and once everyone was safely in position Cowley gave the signal.
Murphy and Bodie advanced together, both kicking out at the glass which shattered with a satisfying crash. As they entered the house, gun drawn, Bodie heard the front door burst open under Johnson's weight. For a second they faced each other across the narrow hallway, both guns drawn. Johnson flashed Bodie a brief smile before moving upstairs.
It wasn't long before the squad realised that something was wrong. For a start, the usual sound of panic and alarm associated with a CI5 raid were missing, and the house was silent.
At his shout, everyone joined Bodie in a room at the back of the empty house. He was kneeling on the carpet, a black jacket in one hand as he holstered his gun with the other.
"It's Doyle's jacket." He sighed. "Well…mine. I leant it to him yesterday."
Cowley nodded. "His holster is in one of the other rooms. The gun's gone, though."
Bodie leant back against the wall, still holding on tight to the jacket. Only then did he notice the bloodstains and broken glass on the carpet, and closed his eyes in despair, resting his chin in his hands.
Around him he could hear movement as Cowley barked orders to the others. Then the room went quiet and the other agents left; Murphy to call Malone and the forensics team, and Johnson to find out from BT what calls had been made from the house. The others left just to be diplomatic.
A few moments to collect himself and his thoughts, then Bodie joined Cowley in the kitchen.
"We'll get Forensics over every inch of the house. Hopefully that will tell us something."
Bodie nodded. "How long ago did they leave?"
"We don't know. You can get to the garage from a door in the lounge, so it's not as if the neighbours would have seen them force Doyle into a car. We're checking anyway, but for all we know they left straight after the ransom call this morning."
Frustrated, Bodie sat down and started drumming his finger's against the tabletop. "We're right back to square one then."
Cowley said nothing.
"Dammit, Doyle." Bodie muttered. "Where the hell are you?"
The car took the sharp turn too fast, and the rocking motion sent him to his side, wincing as he moved. Doyle had spent the afternoon working on the ropes around his wrists, which had turned out to be harder than he'd thought.
He'd managed to force the bulb out of the lamp and get back to his previous position without being discovered, but the ropes were strong and new, and the fragile glass kept splintering.
As a result, while he had made some headway on the ropes, slivers of glass had embedded themselves in his hands. The broken arm had hindered his movement, and Doyle thought he'd probably slashed at his wrists more often than the ropes. The thought had occurred to him that it might look like some kind of bizarre suicide attempt rather than an escape, but he'd ignored the blood dripping from his wrists and kept trying anyway.
The house had been quiet most of the afternoon, only an occasional laugh reaching his ears; and he'd been mostly ignored.
He'd been surprised then by the sudden frantic movement he'd heard, and when Cane's two friends had burst into the room soon after. Neither had said a word to him, just hauled him up off the floor, and Doyle had choked off a groan of pain with difficulty.
Of course, as soon as they'd seen the blood pooling under him they'd noticed the state of the ropes. After knocking him about a bit for good measure, they'd added more rope, removed the glass and carried him out of the room. Disoriented by the sudden movement, Doyle could make out little more than a few cracked ceilings.
In dumping him in the boot of the car he'd caught his head on the edge, and it had been a while before his head cleared. When he could finally think straight, his first thoughts had been escape. Rolling painfully onto his back, he kicked both feet against the lid, trying to see if there was any way he could open the boot of the car.
Searing pain knifed through his ribs as he moved, and he bit his lip as he tried again, fighting nausea at the pain, and the metallic taste in his mouth as his lip split.
He could only think of one reason for Cane's sudden flight, and felt an absurd sense of pride at the panic he'd heard. Bodie must be on his way. For someone as cool under pressure as Cane had proved himself to be in the three months Doyle had spent undercover, only the approach of CI5 could cause him to lose the icy cool Cane was famous for.
As the day had passed, Doyle had become increasingly unsure as to what was happening, and, quite frankly, amazed that he was still alive. Well aware that Cowley would not negotiate, Doyle knew that Cane would not wait indefinitely before abandoning his plans, and as soon as that happened, his own life could be counted in as long as it took Cane to pull the trigger.
If he was right, and CI5's approach had been what caused their flight, Cane just might decide that he'd waited long enough. Turning his attention back to the car boot, Doyle couldn't help wondering how Bodie would react to the death of his partner.
Weak from the ordeal of the past 24 hours, he knew that the chances of being able to spring the lock were slim, but he kept trying anyway. Unsurprisingly, by the time the car came to a stop he'd had no luck, and he stilled as he heard the car doors slam, unwilling to anger Cane any further. Feet crunching on gravel approached, but night had firmly set in by the time they lifted him out of the car, and he could see little of his surroundings.
Silence ruled as the small group went inside, but as soon as Cane's men had dumped him onto a stone floor, a low conversation began, and though Doyle could not see them, he could just about make out what they were saying.
"…should cut our losses and get out of here."
"I'm not going anywhere without David."
"Come on, Jason. You know damn well CI5 aren't going to hand him over. If they'd wanted to they could have had him out of prison within an hour of your phone call this morning. They're just stalling for time while they try to find us."
Cane was silent.
"Marty's right." the other man, whose name Doyle had never heard, began. "We were bloody lucky to get away from them in time, just now. But they're going to keep looking, and if we're just going to sit here and wait we may as well just give ourselves up now."
"No. We'll give them a bit longer to decide to play things our way. They're not going to find us up here, we've got the perfect little bolt hole. There's nothing to connect this place to us."
A sigh, and then: "Alright. But what about him? He was trying to get away when we went in, if he gets free it's all over anyway."
Tense, Doyle waited, wondering what was coming next…
The hours had passed slowly, but by the time they left Caterham and headed back to the centre of London, they knew little more than they had straight after the raid.
Conscious that Bodie would need to feel as if he was doing something, Cowley had made sure they'd stayed while Malone worked on the house, even though he'd normally have left the forensics team to it. Malone found fingerprints all over the ground floor, some of which would help discover who else had been in the house, but after expecting to find Doyle himself, Bodie was understandably despondent.
The signs of strain were increasingly evident, and Cowley had taken the wheel in the hope that Bodie might be able to get some sleep during the drive. With Murphy in the passenger seat, Bodie sat in semi-darkness behind Cowley, staring unseeing through the back of the driver's seat. Both men knew Bodie too well to try and engage him in idle conversation, and an uneasy silence settled in the car as they drove.
The silence lasted the entire drive, and even when back at CI5 Bodie said nothing. Cowley called a meeting of the Alpha Squad to discuss their next move, and Bodie followed the others into the empty office with an uncharacteristic docility.
Everyone was quiet and downcast, the disappointment of not finding Doyle enough to ensure that, but there was more to it than that. One thing that Bodie and Doyle both shared was their temper, and though Bodie's was quieter, and more contained than his partner's, all the CI5 agents learned early on how to judge the man's mood.
An angry Bodie tended to be quiet, retreating into himself almost in an effort not to lose his temper, but the tell-tale signs could always be found if you looked hard enough. A slight trembling in fingers, almost as if keeping his temper in check was a physical effort, and Bodie tended to become restless, eyes moving constantly to take in everything around him.
This was what they had come to expect, and every agent knew exactly how to deal with 3.7 in that mood, had learned it the hard way, most of them. But this was different, and uncertainty at how to act with Bodie was causing the unease in the room. Sat to Cowley's right Bodie was perfectly still, looking down at the table with a neutral expression on his face. Except for the rise and fall of his chest as he breathed, Bodie could have passed for a statue, and the unusual behaviour confused the others.
"Right." Cowley's voice was gruff, business-like, obviously his way of dealing with an unreadable 3.7, who could be described as volatile even at the best of times. "As soon as we get the fingerprints identified from Malone we can start checking into Cane's employees. If they left in a hurry they might have gone to ground at one of their own homes. Until then, we'll have to check out all the premises that we know Cane has ties to."
Lucas spoke up. "We did that earlier, sir."
"I'm well aware of that. But surveillance wasn't kept up on every building we checked over, so they could have gone back to one of them after leaving the house in Caterham."
"What about Harvey?" Murphy asked. "Could he know where they might have gone?"
"Aye, perhaps. I'll leave that to you, Murphy."
Checking over the various buildings again was going to take several hours and most of the available Squad, so Cowley didn't plan to keep the meeting going very long. After everything had been searched and cleared they'd think again, but if Doyle was in one of the buildings then there was no point in wasting time.
"Any other ideas?"
The voice so quiet, Cowley wasn't sure he'd heard Bodie properly. "What?"
"Give Cane what he asked for. Let his brother go."
"Don't be ridiculous, Bodie."
Cowley turned away from Bodie and back to the face the other agents.
Cowley sighed, torn between anger that Bodie was suggesting something so daft, and compassion that he was so obviously concerned for Doyle that he was grasping at straws. "We've been through this, Bodie. You agreed with me, once we release David Cane they have no reason to keep Doyle alive."
"Well what do you want us to do? Sit around here until Cane decides he's waited long enough? He's not stupid, he must know that if we've not agreed by now we're not going to! How long do you think it's going to be before he kills Doyle anyway?"
"Use that tone of voice with me again, Bodie…"
Instead of answering Bodie stood abruptly, overturning his chair as he did so, and stalked out of the room. Murphy made as if to go after him, but a restraining arm from Cowley stopped him.
"Leave him, Murphy. I'll see to him."
The meeting finished then, the men delaying only long enough to decide which pairs were checking which buildings, then they headed out, glad to be doing something again, and equally glad they weren't going to be anywhere nearby when Cowley caught up with Bodie for Round Two.
They would have been surprised, then, had they heard the conversation that actually took place.
It took Cowley a full ten minutes to track Bodie down, and though he had expected him to be in the rest room, he finally found him in an empty office, listening to the recording of the ransom call again.
Bodie didn't see him at first, and Cowley waited in the doorway until he did, then entered the room and sat down without a word.
Bodie sighed and ran a hand over his eyes, looking as exhausted as Cowley had ever seen, a stark contrast from the controlled composure just ten minutes before.
"Sorry, sir…" he began, but Cowley waved his apology away. Contrary to popular belief George Cowley wasn't quite an unfeeling tyrant, despite the front he presented to the world. The last thing Bodie needed was for Cowley to come across the heavy handed boss, and so Cowley just sat waiting as Bodie listened to the tape again.
Cowley had hoped that Bodie would begin to speak of his own accord, and was quite prepared to wait for him to do so. Bodie needed to get some of this off of his chest. But he could see Bodie wince ever so slightly each time Doyle's voice was cut off, and reached over to shut off the machine before it could begin a third time.
Bodie shook his head, then sighed before turning to face him.
"I can't work out what he's saying. It must be important, but I can't hear him."
"We'll get him back, Bodie."
It was a platitude, and both Bodie and Cowley knew it might not be true, but Bodie was grateful for the reassurance nevertheless.
"It's taking too long. Why haven't they called back?"
"I don't know, lad."
"What if they knew we were coming when they left that house? If Cane really believes we aren't going to co-operate with them, he's got no reason to keep Ray alive."
Cowley said nothing. You didn't argue with a fact.
"We're no further ahead than we were when this all started. What if we never find him?"
"Bodie, it's late, and you're exhausted. Why don't you go home and get some sleep? We'll call if anything new turns up."
But Bodie shook his head. "There's something I'm missing, I can feel it."
Ever since he'd woken up at the hospital he'd had that feeling, as if something vitally important had just happened that he hadn't seen, hadn't noticed. The feeling had grown steadily, making him restless, but however hard he thought, he just couldn't see what it was.
"Bodie, I want you to go home."
Cowley frowned. "There's nothing you can do here. We're checking into every lead, you know that." Bodie made as if to interrupt, and Cowley raised his voice, drowning him out as he continued. "When we do find Doyle he's going to need your help. But you'll be no use to him if you're too tired to see straight. I've told you before, Bodie. You're no use to me if you can't hold a gun, and that applies if you're too tired to see what you're shooting at."
"I can't go home."
"Then sleep here, in the restroom. You've done it before. You never know, a good night's sleep and you might be thinking clearer, might remember what it is you've been missing."
Bodie smiled, a small, rueful grin with little humour.
Cowley walked with Bodie to the restroom, where he sank down on to one of the sofas with a small sigh.
Approaching midnight, those agents who weren't at home were on duty for a reason, and had no time to sit around, so the room was empty, and would likely remain so until the early morning.
Bodie honestly thought he would not be able to sleep, and hoped that the quiet would help him work out whatever it was he couldn't remember. But his head still ached from the assault the night before, and he hadn't allowed himself to stop since leaving the hospital that morning, searching in vain for his missing friend.
Sleep descended quickly, and though his night was not peaceful, and he woke frequently from dreams he did not remember, when he was awakened early the next morning, he did feel somewhat rested.
It was Betty who roused him.
He came awake instantly, having slept with half an ear open as usual, a habit from his days as a merc which still came in handy.
"They've called again. Major Cowley's office."
When Bodie reached Cowley's office they were still on the phone.
"…give you that one. Even I didn't expect you not to look for him, but you may as well stop. We're in the last place you'll ever think to look for me, since I can't very well go home. Oh, and don't bother trying to trace this, I'm in a payphone."
"I want to talk to Doyle."
Cane laughed. "No way, Bodie. You've long since used up the goodwill I was willing to show. Now, do we have a deal?"
Bodie glanced up to face Cowley in surprise, but said nothing.
"It will take some time to have your brother released. Where do we make the exchange?"
"I'll call again at two. That should give you time. When I call I'll expect to hear David on the other end. But don't mess me around, Cowley. Two-thirty and you'll be picking up a corpse."
The line went dead, and Bodie spoke up.
"I thought we weren't going to negotiate with him."
"We're not. But you were right about one thing, Bodie. Doyle is more likely to stay alive if Cane thinks we are. If we have to we will release Cane and set up a meeting, do the same as we did with Christina Hertzog, but I'd rather it didn't get that far."
Bodie refrained from commenting that since he'd nearly been blown up that day, it didn't fill him with confidence. He thought back over the phone call, trying to think if there was anything Cane had said that might be important, only half listening as Cowley continued.
"All the buildings were checked out during the night, but we didn't find…"
Startled by Bodie's sudden outburst, Cowley frowned. "What?"
"Cane was talking about how he couldn't go home. While Doyle was undercover at the club he got quite friendly with Jill Marriott, Cane's ex live-in girlfriend." Seeing Cowley's look, Bodie grinned. "Not that friendly. Cane used to knock her about. I guess Doyle got tired of seeing her look like a punching bag, and decided to do his one man confidante act. He convinced her to leave him. But she wasn't directly involved with the case, I don't think she even knew what Cane was really involved in. Has anyone spoken to her?"
"I've never heard of the woman, so I doubt it. Get on to it, Bodie. If she used to live with the man she might have overheard something that'll help."
Bodie jumped up to leave, displaying more energy in that one move than he had in the whole of the previous twenty-four hours.
"It looks like that night's sleep was worth it, 3.7."
Cowley was rewarded with a parting grin as 3.7 left the room.
Thursday 17th October
Doyle was content to drift, not quite awake, but no longer asleep either. Having obviously decided that he was too much trouble to have to keep a constant watch over Cane had injected him with more of whatever they had used straight after the crash, and he had slept, though not through choice.
Only now were the drugs starting to wear off, and while being sedated wasn't a past-time of choice, he was starting to decide that being unconscious was preferable. It was too dark to see much of anything around him, but the floor beneath him was cold, hard stone, and damp with it. Had Bodie been there Doyle would have laid odds that it was cold enough to see his breath. Bodie, of course, would have disagreed just because, but since Bodie wasn't with him he didn't bother to try and see.
Instead, he relied on the intense cold that had seeped its way through his body as proof, and was only now aware that he was shivering, and probably had been for some time. They'd taken his jacket when they removed his gun and holster, so now all Doyle had as protection against the cold was a thin shirt and jeans. In the frosted cold of the British October nights, it wasn't nearly enough.
In spite of the sleep he'd had Doyle didn't feel rested, and settled in with the cold was an almost pathological weariness that made even lifting his head much too much effort. The logical, detached part of Doyle's mind was aware that he was probably sliding into shock now his adrenaline reserves had gone completely, but that part was strangely quiet, and he was too tired, cold and hungry to care.
The bout of harsh coughing that had first roused him from sleep returned, and he curled in on himself as each cough sent slivers of pain through his ribs. Eyes watering from the pain the coughing subsided slowly, but a full five minutes later he was still gasping as he tried to catch a breath.
Finally managing to breathe properly, the rush of oxygen went straight to his head and his head spun, making him absurdly grateful he was already on the floor. At least he couldn't fall anywhere.
It was all up to Bodie, now. He'd tried to escape, and failed, and the small part of his mind not consumed by the pain was well aware that he was in no condition to do anything more to help himself. His muscles were stiff, his breathing shallow at best, and by the pain in his arm he knew he'd be lucky to keep it even if he were to get out of here alive.
He had faith in his partner, knew Bodie would do everything to try and find him. Even if Bodie failed, it would not be for lack of trying. Either way, his own fate was in someone else's hands now, and Doyle himself would just have to wait.
Trapped inside a twisting world
I can't decide what is even real anymore
As though I ever knew
Tangled in these silhouettes
Floating face down in a river of regrets
And thoughts of you.
-Holy Tears - Tara McLean
Thursday 17th October 1981
Driving back through London, Bodie thought back over what little he knew of Jill Marriott, trying to decide the best approach to use. He'd only actually seen the woman once, one evening when it had been his turn to go into the club to pass information to Doyle. It had been a slow night at the club, and Doyle had been standing behind the bar cleaning glasses whilst chatting to a blonde woman Bodie recognised as Jill only from the files.
In the dim lighting at the club Bodie had instantly decided that the woman, though pretty enough, was wearing much too much make-up. It was only later that Doyle had revealed the reason for it, an attempt to cover up the latest in a long succession of black eyes and bruises. Doyle had been angry at that, and Bodie had listened to another Doyle-tirade about men who could only keep a girlfriend through intimidation and threats. And Bodie agreed with everything Doyle had said, even if at the time he had teased him about playing the knight in shining armour to yet another woman. Doyle had wanted to confront Cane about it, but the operation made that impossible, and he had had to settle for convincing Jill to leave him.
Even that had had to be done carefully. Cane was a very jealous man, and any suspicion that Ray 'Duncan' had been talking to Jill for any reason other than to be pleasant to the boss' girlfriend would have endangered the operation, and Doyle with it.
Doyle had done what he'd set out to do, though, and Jill had left Cane one night a few weeks earlier. Though she hadn't been aware of it, Jill had chosen the perfect night to run. Two days later, just as Cane was setting out to find Jill and bring her home 'where she belonged' CI5 had raided the club, and Jason had had far more important things to worry about ever since.
Arriving at the block where Jill lived, Bodie silently praised Doyle for making sure he knew Jill's new address just in case Cane had tried to find her. The lift was out of order of course, and Bodie went through the five floors at a run, coming to a stop at a blue door which, though the paint was cracked, was in marginally better condition than the others on her floor.
There was no bell, so Bodie knocked, hard, as at this time in the morning there was a good chance she'd be asleep. He already held his ID in his hand, aware that he'd probably get much further with the woman if she was convinced from the start that Cane hadn't sent him.
For almost a full minute there was no movement from inside the flat, and Bodie was about to knock again when the net curtains moved slightly, and he thought he saw a face peering out from behind the glass.
Stepping over, he held his ID card up so that she could see it.
"Miss Marriott?" he raised his voice so that she could hear through the window, and the woman's face quickly disappeared. Seconds later the door opened slightly, the chain locked into place, and although part of Bodie fumed at the delay, he was still impressed by the woman's careful security.
"Bodie. CI5. Can I come in?"
She sighed. "I didn't think you people would leave me alone for long. What's Jason done now?"
As she spoke she unhooked the chain and stepped backwards to allow Bodie through the door. Unsure just how much she knew about the CI5 investigation, Bodie hesitated, and she sighed again, walking away into the lounge/kitchen of the small flat.
Obviously only just awake, nevertheless Jill looked better than the last time Bodie had seen her. Long blonde hair scraped back in a dismissive ponytail, only the faintest bruise could be seen on her cheek, and only then because Bodie knew where it had been. The dark circles beneath her eyes were the only testament to the jumpy, slightly scared young woman Doyle had described to him, and again Bodie silently praised Doyle for convincing her to leave Cane before he could do any permanent damage.
Gesturing him to a seat, Jill walked into the kitchen without a word, and started opening cupboards and filling kettles.
"I can't think straight before my morning coffee." She muttered in way of explanation. "D'you want anything?"
"Coffee's good, thanks." It dawned on Bodie that he was hungry, and a full English breakfast would be quite nice, but right now he'd settle for a coffee to wake him up.
"This is about Jason, yes?"
Bodie nodded. "We're trying to find him. No-one seems to know where he is."
Two steaming cups of coffee in her hands, Jill crossed the room and handed him one of them before curling up on the sofa opposite Bodie. "He doesn't exactly keep me informed of his social schedule anymore, Mr. Bodie. I've spent the last few weeks waiting for him to turn up on my doorstep. To be honest I don't really want to give him any more reason to come after me."
Thinking quickly, Bodie decided that he'd have to tell Jill exactly what was going on. While she might not be too keen on getting involved just because of what Cane had done to her, the chance to help Ray might be enough to sway her. Assuming she knew anything at all, that is.
"D'you remember Ray Duncan?"
Jill smiled and blew gently on her coffee to cool it down. "Yeah. One of yours, wasn't he?"
"How did you know that?"
"I may have got involved with Jason, Mr. Bodie, but I'm not stupid. I read about the CI5 raid in the papers and put two and two together. Didn't think about it at the time, but Ray was too nice to be involved in any of Jason's schemes, and his appearance was too convenient." Jill glanced up at Bodie, and her smile was unconsciously sincere. "Not that I'm complaining, mind you."
Jill saw that Bodie wasn't smiling back, and frowned. "What about him?"
"Jason grabbed him, yesterday. He's holding Ray to ransom for his brother."
"Oh, shit." Barely more than a whisper, Jill reached over to the table, abandoning the coffee in favour of a cigarette lit with shaky hands.
Almost as if sensing the distress, a white Persian kitten got up from its warm position by the radiator and jumped up on Jill's lap, rubbing against her as if in comfort. Absently she stroked the kitten who, satisfied that it had been of help, curled up in a ball and went back to sleep.
"Can't you just let David go?"
"Do you think Jason will let Ray go if we do?"
Jill laughed bitterly. "No. He's a sadistic bastard." Then, as if suddenly thinking what effect her words might have on the man opposite, added: "Sorry."
"We're trying to trace anywhere Cane might go to hide out, or anyone he might contact. None of his contacts that we know about have seen him. Is there anyone you can think of, people we might not know about?"
Jill sat silent for a moment, thinking, then took a long drag from her cigarette, brushing ash from her white dressing gown. Then she reeled off a few names, all of which CI5 had already checked out.
"I don't know if I can be much help to you, Mr. Bodie." Jill sighed. "Jason believed in keeping his business and his personal life very separate. The only friends of his I ever knew were people I happened to meet at the club. They very rarely came to the house."
"And there's no-one else who phoned, names you overheard in conversations?"
She shook her head. "Please believe me, I'd help you if I could. I liked Ray, he was nice to me." She spoke as if that was a surprise, and Bodie wondered fleetingly if Jason was the only man she'd known to treat her like a possession. "He was the only guy at the club who made me feel like he spoke to me because he wanted to, because he was actually interested in what I had to say."
Bodie nodded, disappointed that yet another lead seemed to have fizzled away to nothing. He rose to leave, then fished around in his pocket for a piece of paper, and scribbled down a number.
"If you think of anything else…"
She nodded. "I'll call."
Picking the cat up in her arms, Jill stood as well, and Bodie walked towards the door. Before he could reach it, however, Jill's voice stopped him.
"Hold on, there is something…"
Bodie turned and walked back into the lounge.
"Ages ago, maybe a year, Jason used to talk a lot about this guy. I never met him, and Jason never called him by name, but I often overheard people talking about him, about things they were going to get him to do. They seemed quite close."
"And you don't know his name?"
"No. He called the house a couple of times, but Jason just referred to him as Tank. He never said why, I just assumed it was something to do with his build. Or maybe he'd been in the army, or something."
"Any idea where he is now?"
Jill shook her head. "About eight months ago he just dropped out of sight. Stopped calling the house, Jason stopped talking about him…at least in my hearing, anyway. But I never got the impression they'd had an argument. If Jason was in trouble, he might go to him."
Bodie thanked her and turned to leave again. It was a slim lead, but he'd worked with less, and was anxious to start. Jill followed him to the door, and stopped him with a hand on his arm.
"Will you…um…let me know if you find him?"
Bodie nodded, and left. He glanced round as he walked down the corridor, and the last he saw of Jill she was cradling the kitten in her arms, watching him as he disappeared round the corner.
The coughing woke him up, though he hadn't quite been asleep, merely dozing. He couldn't get comfortable enough to actually sleep. He turned slowly onto his side as he coughed, head spinning.
Doyle couldn't quite remember where he was, or what he was doing there, and forced himself to think back over the past few days to try and figure out what was going on. He could only remember the odd thing, vague images that could be memories, or maybe just his imagination. He tried to think of the earliest thing he could remember, then follow the train of thought through to the present, though when that present was, he couldn't quite remember.
There was something…something about a car. That's right. A car that swerved out of a warehouse, leaving Bodie on the floor where he'd fallen.
Bodie'd been hit…he'd shouted…raced over. A joke…
No...That couldn't be right. If Bodie had been hit, why was he in so much pain?
Doyle groaned and squeezed his eyes shut, as if shutting out his surroundings might help him focus… concentrate.
Slowly it all came back. Being hit by the car…flying through the air…the beating - everything. Being able to remember reassured Doyle that he wasn't going out of his mind, but did little to improve his mood or morale.
Where the hell was Bodie, anyway?
That wasn't fair, he berated himself. Bodie would be doing all he could, unless… Unless something had happened to him.
No. If something had happened to Bodie then it might be Cowley and Murphy searching for him, but they would still try. Besides, if Bodie had been hurt, then Cane would think it amusing to tell him, to let him know just to cause him distress. And Cane would know as soon as anything important happened.
There'd been a frost, he could feel it. The room he was in was little more than an outhouse, attached to the main building, but empty apart from a few bits of wood and dirt, and him, and the stone walls were almost running with water. He was still too cold, still shivering, but prolonged exposure to the cold had made him drowsy and sluggish, and he couldn't really feel it anymore. Couldn't actually feel much of anything. Which, after the pain of the last few days (had it really been days?) was almost pleasant.
He couldn't let this happen. Couldn't just lie there while his body slowly became useless. He started to move, to try and keep his circulation going, keep himself warm. It was going to hurt. Once he got feeling back in his limbs -first pins and needles, then the pain would return, but he had to keep moving.
If…when, dammit…when Bodie arrived he had to be ready, be able to help, if the situation presented itself.
'Here angels speak with jilted tongues
The serpent's tale has come undone.'
Bodie sat in the restroom, thinking. On returning from Jill Marriott's home he'd got Records to start looking at any ex-army men who might have some kind of connection with either of the Cane brothers. During the investigation lists had been made of anyone seen entering the club during off-hours, as well as those who had gone into the back offices while the club was open. The list was almost endless, but Bodie had settled himself to searching through it for anyone whose name was on the army list, or who might have the right kind of build for a nickname like that.
Two hours had narrowed down a few possibilities, but Bodie wasn't convinced, and he'd kept looking. At 10:20, Susan had brought him a sandwich and tried to convince him to take a break, and since the Records team were looking as well, he'd agreed.
So now he'd sat on the sofa, ignoring other agents when they'd come in and out, and made no attempt to join Murphy, Lewis and Johnson, who had settled themselves at the table at the other end of the room. Instead Bodie had bitten back the impulse to tell them to stop lounging around and do something to help find Doyle. There was nothing they could do, right now, and it was right that they should rest while they could, so that they'd be ready when something did turn up.
Besides, as much as he hated it, CI5 hadn't dropped everything to find Doyle, and both Murphy and Lewis were working on other cases while they waited for news on Cane's location. Johnson had been moved to shadowing Murphy, to allow Bodie to search for Doyle without hindrance from a new, unsure recruit.
Anson poked his head round the restroom door, and though Bodie registered his presence, still he didn't react.
"Hey, Smurph! The old man wants to see you. Ten minutes, once he's finished with the minister."
Even as Murphy glanced up and nodded, a bemused look crossed Johnson's face.
Murphy laughed. "My nickname. Doyle gave it to me, and it kind of stuck."
At the mention of Doyle's name Bodie glanced up and caught Murphy's eye. Feeling that he ought to make an effort he smiled, and started listening properly to the idle conversation.
"…nickname I ever had was Tank. They used to say I was as big as one and twice as heavy. Stupid, I guess, but nicknames always are."
Bodie's blood froze.
As his smile faded Bodie could hear Jill's words echoing in his head. "Jason just referred to him as Tank. He never said why, I just assumed it was something to do with his build."
Standing, Bodie walked out of the room in a daze. Though silent, his mind was whirling.
Surely it wasn't possible.
Thinking furiously, Bodie walked randomly around the corridors. CI5 agents were supposed to be incorruptible, above reproach, and up until two years ago Bodie would have thought it ridiculous.
But then Barry Martin had turned Rogue, had even tried to kill Cowley, and now Bodie wasn't so sure.
But he had to be sure, had to be absolutely certain before he acted on his suspicions. He was well aware that he'd been acting strangely the past few days, and to make a mistake on something like this would waste valuable time in the search for Doyle.
If he was wrong.
Heading back to Phonetics, Bodie dug out the tape of Cane's first phone call. With his new suspicions, could he now work out what Doyle was trying to tell him?
Taking a tape recorder to a soundproof room, Bodie turned the volume up to maximum, and listened. First his own voice, 'I'm here sunshine', then a pause, then 'be careful, there's a…' then too much noise. No, he couldn't hope to decipher what even the experts couldn't hear, but he was sure now.
Whatever Doyle had tried to say, it had to be important, and what was more important than warning about a traitor in CI5? Hindsight was a bitter teacher, and now Bodie saw all the clues he'd missed, everything that hadn't quite made sense.
How Cane had known that they were on their way to Caterham, how he'd known where they were on stakeout in the first place. How he'd known just when to appear, so that Doyle was outside but they hadn't been hanging around long enough to draw attention to themselves. And now the nickname? It was too much of a coincidence, it had to be him.
Suddenly it dawned on Bodie, just what it was he'd missed right at the start, what had been at the back of his mind all the way through his frantic search that he hadn't quite been able to remember.
The night of the stakeout, when he'd heard the car and gone downstairs, he'd shot one of them, but had barely moved from the doorway of the stakeout building. A stupid move even then, standing in the light like that made him a perfect target for any of the men standing over Doyle, but the blow had come from behind. There was no way that anyone could have come round the side of the building without being seen in his peripheral vision, but from the stairs? Johnson had come down behind him, was still in the stairwell, and since Bodie hadn't expected danger from where he'd just walked, Johnson could easily have taken him by surprise. And he did.
Utterly convinced now, and storming through the corridors in CI5, Bodie cursed himself for being a hundred different types of fool. He should have seen it then, should have known as soon as he'd woken up what had happened, but he'd been too busy worrying about Doyle, and Johnson's self-effacing new guy routine had been absolutely perfect.
No matter. The man must know how to get hold of Cane, had called him and warned of CI5's approach only the day before, and Bodie would make sure that Johnson passed that information on. With pleasure.
The restroom door was only slightly ajar, and in his fury Bodie's push slammed it back hard against the wall, and it shook on its hinges as he walked past. Both Murphy and Johnson had been standing up as he entered, probably on their way to see Cowley, and turned in surprise as Bodie advanced on Johnson.
Lashing out, one perfectly placed fist sent Johnson to the floor, seconds later staring up at Bodie in shock as blood trickled from the man's mouth.
"You bastard." Bodie growled out, even as both Murphy and Lewis moved to stop him, evidently thinking that 3.7 had gone crazy.
"Bodie…what the hell are you doing?"
But Bodie shook off their arms as they tried to restrain him, hauling Johnson up by his collar before slamming him back into the wall and pinning him there. One arm secured on the man's throat, the other pulled Johnson's gun out of his holster, throwing it across the room out of the way.
"Where is he? Where has Cane taken him?"
"What are you on about?" Johnson whined, obviously speaking with difficulty.
"I know who you really are. Now. Where. Is. Doyle?"
Johnson fell silent, glancing about uncertainly as Murphy and Lewis looked on in confusion.
Seconds later Cowley himself burst into the room looking like the wrath of God incarnate, having been drawn from his office by the commotion.
"What the hell is going on?" he began. "3.7? Would you like to explain why you're acting like you're back in the playground?"
Cowley's voice was hard, and clipped, the tone usually enough to cower any member of CI5 with ease. But Bodie barely noticed him.
"I'm in no mood for twenty questions, Johnson. Well?"
Only now did Bodie notice his boss. "Johnson's about to tell me where Doyle is, sir."
Cowley frowned, and looked at Johnson for a second, before turning his attention back to Bodie.
"You'd better explain that, Bodie."
"This is how Cane knew we were coming, how he's been one step ahead of us since day one. Johnson on his bloody payroll."
"Bodie…" Johnson tried to placate the man, convince him that he was wrong, but Bodie cut him off before he could even start.
"Lie to me, Johnson, and I will personally put you in the hospital next to Harvey. There's only one thing I want to hear from you."
Johnson's eyes narrowed. "You're crazy."
Cowley interrupted. "Are you sure about this, 3.7?"
Bodie forced himself to think clearly in spite of his rage. He couldn't risk Cowley not believing him now Johnson knew he'd been discovered. "Johnson's the one who hit me Tuesday night. He called them yesterday, told them we were on our way. He's been keeping them informed right from the start. Which means, he knows where Doyle is. Don't you."
Johnson said nothing at first, glancing nervously at each of the four other people in the room. Then he shrugged, and grinned: a nasty, amused half-smile totally at odds with the slightly shy role he'd been playing since joining CI5.
He shook off Bodie's hold on him, but made no move to escape, merely raising an eyebrow to Bodie. "What gave me away?"
Bodie held his fists at his side, fighting a conscious desire to beat the bastard to a pulp then and there. Right now he needed information, there was time enough for revenge later.
"I've heard your nickname somewhere before." Even in his anger Bodie was careful to keep Jill's name out of the conversation for fear of reprisals against her. "After that everything started to make sense."
Johnson shook his head, half-amused. "It's always the little things. But I'm disappointed in you, Bodie. It took the best in CI5 this long to figure it all out? I thought you'd know I was involved as soon as I had to hit you. You're getting sloppy, 3.7."
Bodie lunged at him and Johnson flinched, but both Murphy and Lewis pulled him back before he could do any damage.
"Were you been working for Cane before you joined CI5?" It was Cowley's turn, now.
Johnson nodded. "Five years on the police force and no-one ever knew I was passing information to Cane. When the offer to join this lot came up Jason decided it was too good a chance to miss. An informant inside CI5 itself?! So I applied. Was too late to do anything about the raid, but then I was assigned to shadow the man responsible for putting David inside! Jason couldn't believe it when I told him. Thought it was fuckin' Christmas."
Bodie'd had enough by now, and cut him off before he could carry on. "Now the important question. Where's Doyle?"
But Johnson just laughed. "No way, Bodie. He's my insurance. Let me walk out of here, and when I'm safe on a plane I'll tell you. Not before."
"Not likely." This from Cowley. "Get him out of here."
Murphy and Lewis marched Johnson out of the room, and Bodie and Cowley were left on their own.
"He warned them we were on our way. They can't have had long to find somewhere else to hole up. He has to know where Doyle is."
"I know. Murphy and I will deal with him. Check his personnel record out, see if there's anything there."
"What good will that be? If we missed he was working for Cane…"
"Just get it, Bodie."
Bodie took a deep breath. Getting into an argument with Cowley wouldn't do Doyle any good. Heading down to Personnel, he hunted through the cabinets and quickly came up with Johnson's file. Flicking through the pages something caught Bodie's eye, and he went straight down to the interrogation room they'd taken Johnson to, ignoring the man, and heading instead straight for Cowley.
"Look, there's a list of addresses here."
Cowley joined him at the table and looked over the page. "That's right. The first one is his assigned flat, second the address of his next of kin. What's your point, Bodie?"
"The third address in Kent, sir. When Cane phoned this morning he said he was in the last place in the world we'd think to look."
"Your point, Bodie?"
"Even if we'd turned over half the country looking for Doyle, the last place we'd even think of looking is somewhere owned by a CI5 agent! What if when Johnson warned them yesterday he told them to go there? The place is empty, it's a perfect little bolt-hole. "
Cowley glanced over at Johnson. "Is Cane at your house in Kent? Is he?"
Johnson said nothing, but the look on his face spoke for him.
Convinced, Cowley left Lewis instructions on how to deal with Johnson, and the other three quickly headed out of the room. Within minutes the same squad that had travelled to Caterham had been assembled, minus Johnson himself, of course, and they set out.
Exhaustion had finally lulled him into a restless sleep, and he woke, startled, by the sound of gunfire coming from the next room. Before he'd had a chance to get his bearings, Doyle was hauled upright, and he cried out in pain as his whole body vehemently protested the movement.
One arm wrapped firmly around his neck, Cane dragged him a few feet backwards away from the door, into a more defensible position. The door burst open, and if Doyle had had the breath to spare, he would have cheered as Bodie appeared in the doorway.
But Doyle didn't have the breath to spare. Cane was a few inches taller than him, and the choke hold forced Doyle onto his toes, only just managing to keep contact with the floor. Already he was gasping as he tried to breathe.
With both hands wrapped around his gun, aimed firmly at Cane, Bodie looked pissed, but was only too well aware that Doyle was too big a shield, and he didn't dare risk the shot. The gun that Cane held to Doyle's side only helped to reinforce that decision. Still, he kept the aim, waiting for the smallest chance.
"It's all over, Cane. Let him go."
But Cane just laughed, and tightened his hold around Doyle's neck. "That's not how this works, Bodie. I'll give up on my brother, but unless you let me out of here, you're going to need a new partner." As if to back up his words Cane pushed the gun harder against Doyle's ribs, and Doyle groaned in pain. The tension in the room doubled.
The sounds of the fight from the other room had abated, and Bodie knew that Cane's two friends had been subdued. He could hear quiet murmuring from the other room, but no-one else dared enter the small room, afraid of exacerbating the situation.
"How likely do you think you are to get out of here alive if you kill him?"
"I'll take my chances."
Doyle hung weakly onto Cane's arm, his gasps echoing round the small room. Already his vision was dimming, and he didn't know how much longer he'd be able to last. But something in Cane's voice, so loud even over the rushing in his ears made him take notice, and in a flash of clarity he knew what Cane was going to do.
His own body in the way, Doyle knew that Bodie would not shoot at Cane, no matter how much he wanted Bodie to shoot anyway. His partner was an excellent shot, and could probably make it, but wouldn't, placing Doyle's own safety above everything.
Of course, that didn't stop Cane from being able to shoot, and as the gun moved from his side, Doyle knew that Cane was going to shoot Bodie. The room was empty, there was no cover, and with Bodie dead Cane would still have a hostage with which to bargain his way out with, and one less CI5 agent to worry about.
Fear lent Doyle a burst of adrenaline, and gave him the energy to stay conscious a moment longer. As Cane raised the gun and took aim at Bodie, Doyle gathered the tattered reserves of his strength, and balanced as well as he could. Cane began squeezing the trigger, and Doyle threw himself to the left, falling onto Cane's arm and disrupting his aim even as he fired.
Surprised, Cane's hold around Doyle's neck slipped, and Doyle collapsed to the ground, gratefully gasping in air. Small gasps though, as his ribs hurt too much for any more. Above him, three shots were fired in quick succession, and the murmuring in the next room stopped, as everyone waited to see what had happened.
Cane's aim had been dead on target, but Doyle had reacted well, and the bullet had missed Bodie completely…just. He too had seen what Cane was going to do, but had been unable to do anything, and was well aware that Doyle had just saved his life. As soon as Doyle had fallen Bodie had fired, and at such close range both bullets had thrown Cane backwards across the room, where he'd hit the wall before collapsing, dead before he hit the ground, eyes open.
Only after making sure that Cane was dead did Bodie allow himself to look at the figure lying face down on the filthy floor.
"Cowley! Get an ambulance!"
A burst of activity in the next room, but Bodie ignored it, going to his knees by his partner's side. Holstering his gun, Bodie pulled out a knife, taking in the various cuts and bruises as he did so. Cutting through the ropes produced a groan from Doyle, and he turned his partner over gently. Doyle stared up at his partner through slightly dazed eyes, but Bodie breathed a sigh of relief, nonetheless.
Doyle's voice as hoarse, barely a whisper, and Bodie had to lean in closer to hear him. "Thought you…didn't believe in…him…just in…"
But the rest of his sentence dissolved as Doyle started coughing again, and Bodie turned him onto his side just in case. Only then did he realise that the body beneath his hands was shivering badly, and discovered just how cold Doyle was. Cowley entered the room as Bodie pulled off his jacket.
"See if there's a rug or a blanket in one of the cars, sir." Bodie requested. "He's freezing."
Cowley nodded. "There's an ambulance on it's way."
At that Doyle stirred again. "I'm…fine. Don’t need…" He tried to sit up, yelping as he did so, but Bodie pushed him carefully back to the ground.
"Don't be stupid, Doyle." There was no malice in his words, and as he covered Doyle as best he could with his jacket, he was running his gaze over his partner, cataloguing the injuries. He was breathing hard, and shallowly, and Bodie could see cuts and bruises on almost every part of exposed skin. His face was pale, or at least what could be seen around two days growth of beard, and one arm was quite obviously broken, and seriously swollen.
Regardless, Doyle was alive, and didn't seem to be in any serious danger, and as Bodie heard the ambulance in the distance, he grinned.
As the coughing subsided Doyle turned weakly onto his back, and looked up at his partner. "Is he dead?"
Bodie glanced again at the body across the room, and nodded.
"Anytime, sunshine. Besides, had to get my jacket back, didn't I?"
Doyle smiled, albeit shakily, and rested his head against Bodie's leg where he was knelt, grateful for even that small bit of warmth.
The paramedics arrived, and Bodie stepped back to give them room, talking quietly to Cowley whilst keeping one eye on Doyle, just in case.
Doyle woke slowly. At first, he fought it, preferring to stay asleep, where he didn't have to deal with the pain and the cold. But as he started to become aware of his surroundings, he relaxed. He recognised the room he was in before he'd even opened his eyes. It was definitely a hospital, there was a feel to it he'd learnt to recognise over the years - slightly too warm, stuffy, an antiseptic smell, noise muffled except for the pushing of gurneys and beeping of machines. The pain was there, but in the distance, easier to deal with, and it wasn't quite as hard to breathe anymore.
He was alone when he awoke fully, though he could see Bodie and Cowley talking to a doctor just outside. He already knew what the doctor was saying, having endured the lecture himself an hour before, after they'd finished patching him up and finally let him rest. The broken ribs and mild concussion he'd been prepared for, and though he'd protested the IV drip, convinced that he wasn't dehydrated, he had to admit now to feeling better for it.
His arm was a pleasant surprise. Though broken and severely swollen, the doctor's had assured him that the circulation was fine, and while it might take a little longer to heal than usual, there would be no permanent damage. Having been convinced that he was going to lose at least partial mobility, Doyle had made no protest at the decision to put a cast on it, something that had surprised Bodie, though he'd said nothing, and looked pleased.
Eyelids drooping again, Doyle thought briefly about trying to stay awake until Bodie came in, to find out just how Bodie had found him. It had taken too long for his rushed clue, 'be careful, there's another Barry Martin' to have been the key, but Doyle figured that Bodie would probably have uncovered Johnson anyway, and was happy to leave the questions until later, when he could stay awake. Everything else that needed to be said had been said already, without words, but through a dozen different glances in the ambulance on the way to the hospital. Doyle yawned and drifted back to sleep, only vaguely aware of Cowley walking away, and Bodie coming into the room and sitting beside him.
Bodie sat back down by the bed, watching the man asleep under the covers. After making sure Doyle was truly asleep, he leant his head wearily on his hands and sighed in relief. It was over. Cane was dead, Doyle was alive - hurt, but safe. Everything else would fix itself given time.
Since he'd convinced the Sister that Doyle required protection, the visiting hours no longer applied to him, and Bodie had no plans on leaving for a while. When Cowley found out he'd probably receive a lecture on 'abusing CI5 authority', and Doyle would complain about the nursemaiding, but none of that mattered.
Finally allowing himself to relax for the first time in almost 48 hours, Bodie's head gradually drifted from his hands to the bed in front of him, and he slept beside his partner.
-- THE END --