Walking alongside the rest of the High Ranks. Rafael looked around as the beautiful island landscape around him. Although he never met them, his grandfather’s side was in fact from Sicily. So in some ways, it felt like a nice learning opportunity for Rafael. To at least get a glimpse of his family heritage and where they came from originally. However, Rafael couldn’t bask in it for long as he had a serious mission ahead of him. He stopped to take in one last look of the Mediterranean coastline before pulling his gaze away and entering the FBI hideout.
After stepping inside, Rafael was led to a conference area and there he met up with Hayden. Instantly walking to his partner and best friend and standing next to him. Each of the ten High Ranks was in this mission which was honestly a rare occasion but it was what the Italian FBI base asked. So they each complied and joined in as a whole.
Each of the Canadian agents waited together in the smallish room for the Italian members to come out and give instructions on the mission.
Rafael crossed his arms and leaned on the back wall as the Italian agents came in and told the story about what was going on. It seemed like an interesting mission yet at the same time it didn’t seem like anything all that serious. When Rafael listened to the story, it felt a little off for them to call /all/ ten of the Canadian High Ranks. It honestly wasn’t necessary, or at least that’s what Rafael thought at the time.
The mission was a standard high-risk drug case. Ran by two twin brothers and they were harvesting a lot of very expensive and of course highly illegal substances. Selling them on the black market for three times what it cost to make and the story continues. In the story, it was also mentioned that only one brother was really the ring leader of everything while the other was unfairly dragged into the business by blackmail from his brother. That obviously sounded very cruel but understandable if the guy was /that/ twisted.
Forty-five minutes or so had gone by and the Canadian agents were receiving their duties for the mission. Oddly enough with Rafael’s job title and background, he was sure that his job would be out on the field. But much to his surprise, he and Hayden were sharing the same job. Gathering information from the sources themselves. Rafael knew how to do the job, they all did, it was he was just a little thrown off when he first got the instructions.
As the Italian base left the Canadians in charge they left the room and Mitchell stepped up and took over. Approaching each agent pair, and as always finishing with Nine and Ten.
“Even though you two are at the end of the chain so to speak. You both have the most important jobs in this whole mission.”
Griffin said just as he approached Rafael and Hayden.
“Lovely way of putting it, Griff.”
Hayden remarked. As usual, Griffin just rolled his eyes and ignored the agent before continuing.
“Anyway. Landon, you’re perfectly fluent in Italian, and Cato you’re pretty good at it. So it’s up to you guys to run the interrogations and see if you can get one of them to crack. Our target, of course, is the twin that’s being blackmailed. Alls we gotta do is figure out which one it is.”
“And that’s our job.”
“Gee Hayden nothing gets past you.”
“Okay! Sounds good, let’s not have a revisit from what happened in Denmark. We’re on the case Number One.”
Rafael chimed in and then finalized before each group dispersed and went their separate ways for the mission. Leaving Rafael and Hayden alone to stay in the building as the Italian base brought in the twins for questioning. Like always Rafael was a bit nervous but Hayden was quick to pick up on it and talked with him to help keep him at ease. Saying that there wasn’t anything he couldn’t handle and could always call for backup whenever needed.
After the little pep-talk, Rafael was ready and both of them went into their separate rooms and awaited each brother. Rafael close to the wall as he watched one of the brothers walked in. In handcuffs and walking with two agents at each side, holding onto each arm. They set the guy down in the chair and un-cuffed him. Then informed Rafael to be careful and to make sure he had his own cuffs on his person. Speaking in Italian of course, Rafael replied and informed that he had everything he needed in his belt.
With that, the agents left the two alone. Rafael stayed standing and regarded the male in silence. Looking him over Rafael noticed that he wasn’t that bad looking. He had nice dark brown almost black hair and very deep brown eyes. He seemed roughly around Rafael’s age and was dressed very nicely. Wearing what looked to be from the finest Italian designers. It made perfect sense though, he and his twin were loaded beyond belief. The only problem was, it was illegally earned.
Snapping out of it, the brother spoke and asked Rafael what it was he was doing. Rafael came up with a quick response. Saying that he was just examining a moment. He wasn’t really sure if the guy believed him or not but he shrugged it off anyway. Then he asked if the guy spoke English. Much to Rafael’s surprise again, this guy was pretty cooperative and wasn’t giving Rafael a hard time at all. That made Rafael slightly worry for Hayden but had to let that go and nod when the guy replied that he did speak English and well.
“So, what is your name?”
Rafael was easily a little shocked when he, in fact, spoke first rather than Rafael himself. And was, in fact, asking /him/ questions instead of the other way around. But Rafael just shook it off anyway.
“Oh... um. Agent Rafael Landon.”
“Ah, like the Italian Renaissance painter yes?”
“Uh, yeah but with an ‘F’ rather than ‘PH’... wait don’t tell me /your/ name is Donatello.”
The guy lightly chuckled and shook his head. Right before he slightly pushed the chair out a little.
“Sadly no, my name is Evander. Evander Fulvia.”
Rafael lightly snorted a chuckle himself. Crossing his arms and leaning on the back wall of the room.
“Huh. Your name means ‘good man’ that seems pretty ironic don’t you think?”
“You think it is me? Oh no... not at all I am the good one. My brother is the evil mastermind believe me.”
“Why the hell should I believe you?”
“Because it is I who is innocent in all of this. My bother has been blackmailing me for five years now. If I don’t do what he says then I’ll get ratted out.”
Rafael narrowed his eyes at the suspect. He honestly wasn’t sure what to believe or not. But he knew better than to cave in an instant and believe that he was telling the truth. It could be possible that one of the brothers told the other what to say. That this whole thing was previously rehearsed. The brother that was getting blackmailed wouldn’t give it away so quickly. Would he?
Rafael didn’t even /really/ interrogate him and already he was telling on his other brother. To Rafael that could only really mean two things. Either it was this brother was the real mastermind, or he hated his own brother /that/ much.
Although, for the most part, Rafael wasn’t the best at it. He kept his guard up and didn’t buy into anything Evander was saying. Even though he kept mentioning that it was he who was the innocent twin. Rafael refused to speculate it fully and tried to get out as much information he could. Even though Evander still wasn’t putting up any fights or giving Rafael a hard time at all. Rafael remained firm and didn’t really believe any of his stories.
There was, of course, the possibility of the stories being true, but that was something that took more digging. Rafael had to know the other side of things. He wouldn’t know to believe anything until he heard the other brother’s side from Hayden. Until then he took Evander’s stories with skepticism.
Rafael himself never played the “bad cop” role. Whenever he interrogated he remained calm and civil with the person. He didn’t really have much of a temper to lose and was very patient and level-headed. Even when he didn’t believe them, he still listened to what the person had to say. In Evander’s case, he mostly just explained that he did some things in the past that he wasn’t proud of. He had gotten himself in trouble with the law and his twin brother had to bail him out.
There was, however, the catch. In order to not get sent back to jail, Evander had to listen and do everything his brother told him. Being left with no choice, Evander had to join his twin, Consus in this huge drug business.
Then again it could’ve easily been the other way around. It could be Consus who was the innocent one and Evander the bad guy. One twin could’ve easily switched the stories around to make one look bad. If they were as horrible as they seemed, it sounded like a possibility. There was also the chance that the names were switched and one twin was portraying the other.
There were evidently a lot of ways to go about the whole thing. But before Rafael could’ve had the chance to dig any deeper. Their time was up and both twins have to get sent back into custody. Leaving Rafael hanging with more questioning and a lot of information still left in the dark. Regardless, of how irritated that made him, Rafael knew he had to respect their ways and let it go. And just that night, the group was informed that they were to spend the next few weeks in Sicily until they could crack the case wide open.
During that time, trying to crack open the case was exactly what they were trying to do. Rafael later talked with Hayden about his end of everything and oddly enough it sounded a lot like Rafael’s end. Consus was being cooperative and wasn’t giving Hayden much of a hard time. The difference, however, was that Consus never admitted on whether or not he was being blackmailed by Evander. If Hayden ever mentioned it he would only ignore it and move on to the next topic. That was a little suspicious and made the boys keep a closer eye on the twins.
They spent all of those weeks interrogating the twins and learning about them. Figuring out how they tick and what would set them off or something. Also picking up on personality traits and what really made them who they were.
On Rafael’s side, he discovered that Evander seemed like he was an alright kind of guy. He was pretty nice and even appeared to be a bit friendly. Or at least to Rafael. In time the sessions felt less like interrogations and more as just the two of them talking. Rafael knew that it was a bad idea and that he shouldn’t have thought the way he was thinking or feel what he was feeling. But nonetheless, he grew to like Evander and it was seeming the same the other way around. The two were friendly and so calm with one another. Comfortable and it felt like Rafael wasn’t even at work whenever he was with Evander.
But despite how comfortable Rafael felt. It was still wrong, very wrong. Evander was a suspect in a huge and very illegal case, and Rafael was an agent. He was the FBI guy who was supposed to take Evander away. Yet it didn’t feel like that to them, Rafael was liking Evander. They talked normally and learned about each other. Getting to know one another personally and everything. Rafael hated it and didn’t want to, but did. He liked him and was admitting that to himself.
It was so very wrong.
What made things much worse was one night in particular. It was the night Rafael had let his guard down completely and finding himself gravitating toward the “enemy” more and more.
During what was supposed to be a serious interrogation. Rafael and Evander were being playful and messing around. It was even a little flirtatious. At first, Rafael thought it was just him but he was quick to discover that Evander was just as into it as Rafael was. They weren’t being serious and Evander kept mentioning that there weren’t any cameras in the room and that no one could see or hear them.
It started with them sitting at the table, first across from each other, then side by side, and then it moved to them both standing. Rafael had moved to lean on the back wall and watched Evander as he moved about the room and was being silly. Talking about stories about his childhood with his twin brother. The two never got along it seemed and Rafael could understand. Of course, him believing now that it was the other twin who was the bad guy. Rafael was pulling one bad move after the other and was showing a more sincere and vulnerable side. Obviously, an agent was /never/ supposed to do that with a suspect but Rafael was there doing just that.
The events that topped everything off was when Evander stopped moving about and moved to stand in front of where Rafael was standing. The two now face to face and close near the wall of the room. Alone together.
One bad move after another and Rafael playfully admitted that him being that close wasn’t something he would complain about. That led to Evander lightly chuckling and saying that to him it wasn’t close enough.
Rafael half smiled and chuckled himself and before he knew it he felt Evander’s lips on his own. Rafael had fallen right into it and reciprocated the action. Getting pulled closer to him and both of them synchronized with each move. One thing had to lead to another and the ultimate crime had been committed. Right when Rafael left the interrogation room with Evander.
The last Rafael remembered was that after they left the room and the base altogether. Evander led Rafael down to a beachside hotel and had gotten a room. Picking up where they left off. The heat and intensity only continued to grow and just like that Rafael had wound up where he was right then. In bed in some hotel room with a suspect, he was meant to be questioning.
Rafael slowly opened his eyes and moved a hand to his face. Rubbing the sleep out of one of his eyes. He turned and reached over to grab his glasses from one of the nightstands and put them on his face. Looking around he quickly discovered that he was alone in the room. Lightly furrowing in confusion, he looked over beside him and found a note on the bed. Rafael grabbed it, unfolded it, and read it. It was written in Italian but he could understand all of it.
After reading it, he shook his head and crumpled up the small piece of paper.
“Fuck... fuck! What did I do?!”
Rafael let out to himself as he pulled himself to sit up in the bed. Moving his face into his hands he groaned and shook his head. Swearing a few more times. He screwed up and screwed up really bad. This was undoubtedly something that was strictly forbidden and something agents never did. But Rafael had done it.
It wasn’t even like to was something he did often or at all. Rafael wasn’t the type of person who just slept around for fun or did a “one and done” sort of deal. He wasn’t acting like himself at all and it just kept feeling worse.
Heaving out a rough sigh, Rafael searched for his discarded clothing on the floor. After finding them and picking them up he went over to the bathroom and had a long hot shower to try and clear his mind. Although he did things that were unlike himself, Rafael was still honest and knew that he had to tell Hayden. Once he was out of the shower, dried off, and got dressed again he found his phone and dialed Hayden’s number.
After Rafael got out of the hotel he rushed right over to the hideout and met back up with Hayden. As soon as he saw him Rafael pulled him into the conference room and sat him down. Then he pulled out a chair himself, took a deep breath, and despite how much it stung and how humiliated he felt. He told Hayden everything.
“You /what/?! Rafael what is the matter with you?! You cannot sleep with a possible prime suspect!”
Rafael looked solemnly at his partner. Hurt and defeat were evident in his eyes as well as his whole demeanor. Speaking out quietly with a slight strain in his voice.
“I know. This was really bad.”
“Hell yeah, it was! You weren’t thinking at all!... well not with your brain anyway.”
Hayden calmed down and regarded Rafael. Noticing the guilt radiating off of his partner. Instantly he felt bad for raising his voice. It was clear that Rafael made a huge mistake and was hurting from it. It was a horrible offense and if he got caught he would be thrown out immediately and Hayden would never see him again.
Heaving a sigh he shook his head and softened his tone.
“Look, Raf. I love you dude, you’re more than my partner, you’ve grown to be my best friend. It’s because I love you that this hurts so much. You let your guard down to someone bad. I don’t want you hurt or in any trouble.”
“I know... I really fucked up and trust me I’m paying for it...”
“What do you mean?”
Hayden asked and Rafael reached into his utility belt and retrieved the note that he found beside him. Unfolding it he set it on the table and slid it over to Hayden.
Blinking at Rafael, Hayden slowly looked down at the note and read the writing that was on it. Rafael had since translated the note in English beforehand so that Hayden could understand it.
Brown eyes scanned the words on the small wrinkled piece of paper and Hayden studied it before furrowing a little and flashing his now hard eyes back up to Rafael. Then without a word, Hayden pushed out the chair, got up, and started walking. Rafael watched in slight confusion a moment before scrambling up to his feet and following Hayden. He wanted to ask him what he was going to do but refrained and just followed his partner close behind.
The two made it over to the rest of the ranks and Rafael just left Hayden in charge. Hayden told them that he and Rafael figured out which twin was the mastermind behind the whole cartel and that he had an idea on how to take him down. Hayden didn’t tell them everything, of course, just enough so that they could get an angel on the mastermind and how they could track him down as well as the rest of the cartel. As soon as everything was explained and the plans were made. Then the agents banded together and went over to the location to take down the cartel.
Rafael was still a little beside himself with a lot of different emotions flooding at once. But he simply swallowed hard and went along with putting the mission to rest. Shaking it off he went with the rest of the group and followed Hayden the entire time.
The cartel’s base was found in Rome so the group boarded one of the Italian base’s helicopters and flew to the mainland. Rafael looked out as they hovered above the large and ever gorgeous capital city. It was such a shame that something so magnificent could harvest such an ugly and awful thing like this cartel.
But once again Rafael shook his thoughts aside and stayed focused on the mission. Despite feeling overwhelmed with nerves as the helicopter landed. Rafael knew he was in there and that he was going to have to face him, take him down and lock him up. All of a sudden those nerves grew into hostility the moment he got off the helicopter. His insides felt like they were on fire and all he wanted to do was scream fire every weapon in his possession.
It made sense for anyone who was lied to, to get angry. Rafael had taken a huge risk. Placing job and even his life in jeopardy. All for some twisted person who ended up lying right through his teeth and to Rafael’s face. He gritted his teeth as he pulled his gaze off of the building and over to Mitchell as he started instructing the plan.
Rafael was too upset to wait around for much longer and wanted to take action and the matter into his own hands. Shaking his head once he turned and ran right for the building. Not taking any alternative routes or sneaking in like they were supposed to. No, Rafael went head-on and headed straight for the front door. Ignoring everyone who was calling out his name, he took a step back and hook-kicked off the knob of the door, and with the side of his shoulder, he busted right in.
Once he was inside, he looked around reached for his gun in his hostler. He slowly pulled it out but kept the safety on as he continued to wander through the building. He knew exactly what he was looking for and knew that he wanted to take down Evander himself.
The place was dark and surprisingly very quiet. Nonetheless, Rafael ignored all of that and kept his focus on his main target. Picking up his pace from a stride to a run, Rafael picked a random direction and decided to head for the basement. Making it down the dark long hallways, and down the steps. Rafael found a light switch on one of the walls and hit it. Going back to moving slowly again, he looked around and wandered aimlessly until his eyes finally found what they were looking for.
It didn’t take long for Evander to spot Rafael and recognize him instantly. As he turned around all the way, Rafael took his gun and flipped off the safety and cocked it.
“What’s the matter babe, you never called.”
Rafael chided as he moved his feet shoulder-width apart and raised his gun to the suspect before him.
“Y’know I’m used to it. Me letting my guard down and having horrible people use and take advantage of me. But I’ve been fucked over one too many times, getting pretty sick of it.”
“You are being irrational, you wouldn’t shoot me. Not after last night.”
“There you go underestimating me again.”
Aiming the gun down Rafael pulled the trigger and shot at Evander’s foot. Then right as he went down, Rafael quickly whipped out his handcuffs and without putting up a fight, Evander surrendered at Rafael’s hands. It was a little shocking but at the same time, oddly enough, it wasn’t.
Rafael called for the rest of the Ranks to come and take down the rest of the cartel and like many times before that was it. Evander was put into custody to the Italian base and sadly so was Consus. Which made Rafael feel a little bad, but he was honestly a bad person as well. He had been running from the law working for his brother for years.
Just as Rafael stepped out and was about to go over with the others. He stopped as he heard Evander’s voice one last time. Calling out to him.
“This isn’t the end Rafael.”
“Yes, it is. Last night was meaningless and if I visit and dare to catch you anywhere outside of prison I’ll break your fucking neck.”
Turning back around, he folded his arms in front of his chest and made his way over to Hayden and the rest of them. Right away Hayden asked Rafael if he was alright and Rafael just simply nodded. He wasn’t...at all but he wanted to keep it to himself. He knew that Hayden already knew the truth but he was left alone anyway. He didn’t want to bring it up or talk about it or even remember it. All Rafael wanted was to go home.
Boarding the jet Rafael still stayed by himself and found a seat in the back and quickly sat down and strapped in. Although as soon as he did everything flooded inside of him and started pouring out all at once. Heaving a shaky sigh, he put his hand over his mouth and felt his eyes sting and fill up with tears. Squeezing them shut Rafael did everything he could to keep himself together and try to make it home. Even though it was feeling impossible right then, he managed to keep his composure.
However, as soon as the jet landed and they were let go from the mission. Rafael rushed into the secondary building and went down the hall to the bedrooms. Reaching his door he unlocked it and went straight inside. Unhooking his utility belt he let it drop to the floor as well as his bulletproof vest and holsters. Looking around he spotted his motorcycle helmet and contemplated whether he wanted to go for a long drive or not. But he shook his head to himself and refrained from that idea. Instead, Rafael aimed right for his bed and fell right into it. Grabbing one of his pillows he smooshed his face in it and screamed.
Lifting his head he sniffled a little and wiped his face. Heaving out a long sigh he rolled his eyes to himself and turned to lay on his back. Groaning a bit he stared at his ceiling and just let his mind wander until he finally fell asleep after staying awake for so long.