After Alvarez dropped their sergeant and Detective Finlay off at their precinct, he and Casey headed to Walsh's diner to see if he was up to joining them on an outing. Casey knew that he should just remain home to continue resting so as to not provoke the poison that's trying to kill him, but she also knew that he would fight through the pain if it meant being there to help her find the men responsible for hurting him. She did make him a promise to keep him informed after all.
Eddie waited inside the car, while she walked inside and when she did, she found that her partner was still lying down on his bed asleep, although she could see that it was an uncomfortable sleep, as he was twisted up within the blanket he had wrapped over himself before she left earlier, sweat spread across his brow, as well as along his neck and back, and small tremors racked throughout his body. He was burning up and Casey really wanted to just drag him into the hospital, but she couldn't do that to him. She realized that he had every right to help her track down these monsters. If it was her dying, she certainly would want to be in on her attackers' take down.
She gently reached down to wake him, but as she did so, he became startled as he suddenly grabbed his gun from under his pillow with lightning speed and pointed it straight at her, staring at her as if she was a stranger, not seeing his partner of the last few years that they have been together for.
Casey quickly raised her hands as she softly called out, "Whoa! Take it easy, Jason. It's just me, Casey."
It took several moments for Walsh to finally regain his bearings, then he quickly lowered his gun, and replied softly, "I'm so… sorry, Casey. I couldn't… I didn't see you."
"I know, but it's not your fault," she swiftly answered as she sat down on the bed beside her. "You're burning up. You should be in the hospital."
"You're right, I should be, but I'm not going to die in a hospital," Jason responded coldly. "I need to help you find them, Casey. I need you to understand that."
She nodded as she gently placed her hand down on his shoulder, then replied, "I do. I realized it just before I came in here. It may not be smart of me, but I'm going to let you help me. Just don't die on me and we'll be square."
Walsh smiled, then looked over at his clock standing on the small dresser beside his bed, noticing that he had been asleep for a good part of the day, and asked, "Has something come up; a lead?"
"Actually yeah, but I'm not really sure if it's a good lead," she answered. "It may be nothing, but I thought you would like to join us; uh, Alvarez and me. He's waiting in the car."
"You kept your promise," he responded as he smiled up at her. "I'm not surprised, just grateful. Thank you, Shraeger. You're a great partner. I'm not sure when the last time was that I told you that."
Almost an hour later, the three detectives arrived outside of the large and expensive apartment building, which looked very much out of place, seeing as the rest of the buildings surrounding it were old, worn down, and most of them had boarded up windows. It was obvious that its very wealthy owner either lived in it, or kept it up for whatever his or her reasoning was.
Casey spoke up again as she said, "Under normal circumstances, I'd say we should split up to search this place, but…"
Walsh agreed as he continued, "Then, we should split up. It's a good idea, otherwise, it'll take us way too long."
"No way," she replied quickly. "I may be letting you help us, but there is no way I am going to let you go off on your own. Eddie, will you go with him? I'll go on my own."
"Don't worry, I've got his back," Alvarez answered.
Jason knew not to argue with her on this as he watched his partner walk off in the opposite direction once they entered the dimly lit building, then before she disappeared from his sight completely, he quickly called out again saying, "Be careful, Shraeger. Call us right away if you run into any trouble or see something that's not right here."
She turned to look at him again one last time before heading down another hallway as she responded, "You know me. I'm always careful."
Walsh and Alvarez took the elevator up to the top floor of the building to begin their search, while Casey started down on the bottom floor and worked her way up. Almost thirty minutes into their search for anything suspicious or signs of people who didn't look like they belonged there, Casey was suddenly attacked from behind as someone grabbed her and held her close as she struggled to break free, while another assailant stood in front of her and pointed a gun in her face to make her stop. She had dropped her own gun on the ground in the struggle, so she was pretty much helpless at this point.
"Let me guess, you're one of the scumbags that attacked my partner last night," she said angrily in regards to her handler as she continued to struggle, though not as hard as before as she stared at the gun in front of her to keep her calm. "I take it that your previous partner we shot last night took himself another, more fatal bullet, as he isn't with you anymore. Are these faces your real ugly mugs or just more makeup? Go ahead and kill me too, but I'm warning you, I'm not alone in here so you better know that…"
"Don't worry, Detective Shraeger, we're not going to kill you," the assailant holding onto her spoke in a low, deep voice, ignoring her jab about the prosthetics they had worn before. "And I'm pretty sure that our poison hasn't killed your partner just yet either. He certainly had spirit last night when we fought him and you're plenty wealthy I hear, which is why Detective Walsh is the perfect target."
Casey tried to get a look at the one she couldn't really see and then asked, "That's what this is all about; money? I don't understand."
The man continued, "I'll let you go if you just stand here and listen to our proposal. Otherwise, I'll kill you and he'll die, having had no chance to receive the antidote because his partner was too impertinent and stubborn like some of the others."
"You've killed others," Casey stated in surprised as she finally stopped struggling all together. "I'm listening."
"I know," the man replied as he finally let her go. "Very good, Detective Shraeger. Now, my new partner here and I are here hiding out inside this dump, as you've already managed to put together. I expected we would be the ones to surprise you some time tomorrow, so we weren't really prepared, but I guess now is as good a time as any to make you our offer. Your partner's got a day left, maybe two if he takes it easy and doesn't do anything stupid like coming down here to try to help you fight your way out of here. Surely you didn't think that we would think you're here alone, did you?"
Casey shrugged as she answered, "No, I guess you two aren't as stupid as I first thought."
Johnny, the leader of her two attackers chuckled and then responded, "I like you, Miss. Shraeger."
"That's Detective Shraeger," Casey replied impatiently. "Just get on with your proposal already."
"Okay, detective," Johnny answered. "I have an antidote, though not with me, so don't think about calling in back up to search this place; you won't find it. If you want to save your partner's life, we want four million dollars. Normally, we charge two, but seeing as he's a cop and you're a Shraeger, I've decided to double it. As I said before, I know all about you two. We saw you at one of our crime scenes recently and took a liking to you two right away."
Casey quickly thought a moment as she suddenly responded, "Karen Simmons, the rich girl that was shot three times, once in the head, then twice in the chest to make it look like a robbery. That was you? Walsh was right."
The guy nodded and replied, "That was me. Karen tried to cheat me out of the money she owed me. So, I killed her and her sister died this morning from an infected knife wound she earned from a filthy pig who assaulted her in the strip bar she worked at; very sad."
"You sick, son of a b…" Casey started to say angrily as she grew more concerned about her partner, knowing that he would die for sure unless she did exactly as these two goons before her said, or unless she and the rest of her precinct could figure out who this Johnny and his sidekick worked for, then take them all down together and make a deal for the antidote, which was even more of a long shot.
"There's no need for name calling, detective," Johnny interrupted. "I've kept you long enough. Surely Detective Walsh is getting worried about you. Go and find him and I suggest you don't say anything to him or the rest of your friends. Gather the four million I asked for and tomorrow I'll be in touch. Is that understood?"
The detective glared at the two men, then looked directly at Johnny as she answered coldly, "I understand. I'm guessing you've got my number, is that right?"
Johnny smiled smugly as he responded with a coldness in his eyes, "I'll find you. Don't you worry."