Chapter 42 CHOICES
James sat across from the old woman. "The years haven't been pleasant to you, have they Grandmere Holmes?"
"I'm sorry. Do I know you? And how did you get in?" Hilda looked to Agnes, who replied quickly.
"I'm so sorry, Madame. He said he was with the Omega Rights group. You did make arrangements to talk to their representative."
James didn't miss a beat. He took his silencer from the inside of his jacket and shot the woman in the head. Grandmere jumped in her chair. "That got your attention. Good help is so hard to find, isn't it? I've lost several employees this week. Some because of your nephew and grandsons and some because well, I'm just in a mood for blood."
"Who are you?" Hilda demanded.
"Oh, you won't recognize me but, you would my dear dad. Come now Hilda, we're all related here. How could you not recognize me? It hurts. Perhaps it's because you had me thrown in some awful reform school after you had my dad and father murdered."
Hilda looked away from the motionless body of her friend and employee, taking a deep breath. "You'll have to forgive me, child. As you said, it has been a long time. And not everyone is so memorable. Faces as common as yours and your whore Omega's are easily forgotten." Hilda tried to stay focused, her house staff was minimal today, her grandsons would not be visiting. Mycroft had some military business with Arthur, and then there was Sherlock and John.
"Your grandson's won't be visiting. I've kept them occupied. I thought it would be fun to play a game. What do you think?"
"I think you coming out of the rock you've lived under these past years was a dangerous choice for you. If you are coming up against my family you will get burned."
"You see, that's the funny thing, Grandmere. I've seen your boys in action and I'm not at all surprised by their choices. So predictable and common. I can see why my father was so disappointed in them."
"Stop calling me this! You little bastard! You think that my son was your Alpha? Nice try. But your Omega was a whore, and you were already around before my son came into the picture. "
"You killed him. He was my father and you killed him." James growled ignoring her venomous words.
"He was an agent that went rogue. I put a bad dog down." She waved her hands dismissively sitting back with her legs crossed, hands resting on her knees. "He was addicted to that crap your dad was pushing. The man convinced my son to run away with him to join their little organization. He was going to take my grandsons and go. He was so strung out he was beating the children. You're Omega was delusional if he thought I would accept that into my family. As if I would stand by and allow your filth access into our blood line."
"He loved us and you killed him!" James hissed. "You couldn't stand the idea of my da and father being together. You instead wanted him miserable with that crying bitch."
"Violet may be a little high strung but she didn't deserve how my son treated her. She was a far better Omega than your criminal daddy. And yes James, I had him killed. I watched him die and I was there when he had a look of shock in his face. He thought I would allow it, he actually thought it would be alright. To betray his country, to betray his family all for the likes of some drug addicted slut!"
James glared at the older woman "Well, I've been having fun with your precious grandsons and nephews. It's time to stop playing. I'm done. You killed my family, it's only fitting I kill yours. You were there when they sent me away to that awful school. I only wish you had children for me to send to such a place. "
"It was for criminals. You deserved every bit of it! You have a foul blood line. You and the others. All children of drug dealers and murders. Tell me James, did you learn anything in that institution?"
"Lots! And I'll show you just what. First, I think a game! I do love to play games. Your precious Sherlock and Mycroft will love me for the entertainment. What do you think, Grandmere?"
"I think you should know better than to go up against a Vernet-Holmes. You do understand what happens to our enemies. We don't just defeat them. We end them."
"Yes, well you did have a little mercy on me or I wouldn't have had all these years to plan your demise." James withdrew his mobile and sent a quick text. "This will be so fun!" He clapped his hands together with a smile, his voice increasing with his excitement. Hilda kept her shoulders back and head high. She glared down ice on the young man across from her. He was the spitting image of his Omega parent. She cursed herself for being so sentimental and allowing that hateful little monster to live. The whole family had been poison. She never considered the child would grow into a man that tracked her family down.
"Who do you think will win? I'll let you make your bet. "
"We Holmes will always win."
"Even against each other? How strong are your family bonds? What will the Hills chose? You see a pack can be such a dangerous force but when the pack turns on itself, when the threat is internal. Who will they choose? Sometimes wild animals will gnaw off their own limb that's causing an infection. Survival of the fittest is a beautiful thing. And I've made it an children's children will be my paint and you just watch."
Arthur offered his cousin a tumbler of expensive scotch. "Oh, sorry cousin, you're a brandy man aren't you."
"This is acceptable." Mycroft replied, the two toasted. "To the cat finally catching the mouse!"
Both men smiled, Mycroft took the seat across from his cousin near the unlit fire place. "So we have Moran and you're sure that he is the direct line to this Moriarty?"
"Yes, after Quinton drew my attention to the bastard I had him checked out. Lots of red flags were set off by his story. Then he tried to run, we caught him entering into the country after he went AWOL. We'll get him to talk."
"Yes, I always do." Mycroft nodded, his mobile went off at the same time his cousin's did. Both men glanced at their phones, not recognizing the number.
Arthur was first to answer, "Mr. Hill contestant number one, I guess you get to be first up. Please put me on speaker phone."
Arthur frowned and demanded "Who the bloody hell is this? How did you get this number?"
"Come now, that's no way to answer your phone. Didn't your dear old Grandmere teach you any manners? Alright, how about I send you a nice little motivational picture. Here take a look, I just emailed it to your personal laptop on your desk."
Arthur Hill glanced at his open laptop indeed a new email had just come in. He opened the message putting his mobile on the desk next to his forgotten glass.
There was a video file of the flat his brother was allowing Tobias and John to occupy. A man with a gun smiled up at the photographer as he entered.
A video file followed and the man was exiting onto his brother's floor, another video feed showed grandmother and young Joshua entering a similar building.
"They are probably going in to say goodbye to their dear soldier boy." The unfamiliar voice taunted. "Oh, dear they're going to walk into a mess."
"What do you want?"
"I want my Sebby back. And I want you two to chose. "
"Chose what?" Mycroft demanded.
"Chose between John or Tobias."
"What?" Mycroft was on his feet. "Are you mad?"
"Madness is relative, but you've both crossed me Mr. Holmes and General Hill. I can't have that. So you will allow my Sebby to go free, I have a car waiting just outside and you will make sure that neither side keeps him from escaping."
"Not going to happen." Mycroft snapped.
"Unfortunately you don't have that choice. One of you will turn on the other, and with your choice I will allow John or Tobias to be untouched."
Mycroft's mobile rang it was Sherlock, "Mycroft! I need access to a CCTV outside a warehouse in-"
Mycroft had stopped listening, his cousin's laptop lit up, he could see Lestrade and Sherlock standing in an alley, watching as men loaded several vans."
"Ah and that is probably Sherlock and he's just about to walk into a trap. Watch, do you see?" Mycroft nearly dropped his phone, someone had a sniper's scope on Sherlock and Lestrade.
"Sherlock! Don't! Just fall back-" The call was dropped and Mycroft was unsure his brother heard him.
"Uh uh uh, no cheating Myc. Now who will make the first call?"
"You can't!" Mycroft growled as Hill reached for his desk phone.
"Time is ticking." Another taunt.
"No!" Hill could see the armed man nearing his brother's flat. The screen of his laptop split between two scenes. He was in charge of Quinton, that was his brother. The boy was finally happy, and in love. They only had each other, that's what he had once told Quinton as a child after their mother abandoned them. "We have each other." He did love Sherlock but Sherlock wasn't Quinton. Mycroft was reaching for his mobile, but Arthur hit a number on his office phone first.
"Sir." One of his MPS, Corporal Mills ,answered the direct line.
"Release the prisoner Moran. Don't allow anyone to interfere, there is a car waiting you will allow it to leave base!"
"Just do it! That's an order Corporal!"
"Well it looks like we have a winner, it was a pleasure doing business with you Mr. Hill, I'll just wait for my Sebby to take his leave before I clear you."
"Do not allow that prisoner out of your sight at whatever cost!" Mycroft growled into his phone. "You can't let this happen cousin! This mad man will just kill everyone once he has what he wants! What leverage will we have?"
"No! I will not gamble with Quinton like you would Sherlock."
"Boys, I assure you I'm a man of my word." The Irishman laughed happily. "Just watch."
"I wont let you get away!" Mycroft growled.
"He already has, looks like the soldiers overpowered your pathetic agents."
Mycroft was watching a live feed, Arthur's soldiers were fighting with his men and Sebastian Moran had made it to that waiting black car just outside the secret government lock up he was in. He walked out like a free man.
"Pleasure playing. Mycroft, I'll be sure to give John your love! Ta!" The hitman exited the elevator and turned back around to take the elevator out, putting his weapon away.
Sherlock and Lestrade were watching as a familiar half alert blond was being thrown into the back of a van. The figure wearing white scrubs put up a pretty good fight. He beat on the window, Mycroft froze in his place, Lestrade pulled Sherlock back as the men opened fire on them, there was no sound but Mycroft could hear it all play out in his head.
The Van screeched around the corner, one of Lestrade's bullets catching a tire. The men jumped out, the split screen showing Lestrade and Sherlock nearing right in time for the van to explode. Mycroft caught himself on the edge of his cousin's was holding a frantic Sherlock, and the feed switched back to Tobias opening the door of their flat to allow Grandmere Hill and Joshua in. A smile on his face, and Quinton standing happily at his side.
"Forgive me cousin." Arthur sank down into his chair.
Mycroft said nothing, he only turned to leave his cousin's office.
The mobile on his desk rang from the same unknown number, the feed on his lap top showing the hitman taking the elevator back up.
"I gave you what you wanted!"
"Yes, and you proved a point I was trying to make to another member of your twisted family. I did say I wouldn't harm Tobias but I never promised Quinton was safe. I'm just so changeable! Sorry!"
"John's been kidnapped?" Toby nearly squeaked, "By who?"
"His Alpha sister, I don't know. Arthur said Sherlock and Mycroft are up in arms about it. It happened a few days ago while we were occupied." Quinton glanced at his mobile, he was dressed and ready to head back to the trainstation. His leave was over, he didn't want to go but he had his orders. Arthur was already trying to reassign him to guard one of the home offices here in England. As tempting as that was, Quin knew it wasn't fair to play that card. He needed to get back to his men and duties. Toby was sitting on the loveseat worrying at his beautiful lips.
"He'll be fine. It's one of those Omega rights groups. Nothing extreme. They just think they're saving John from an abusive relationship. Something called Omega Rights Right Now."
Toby made a face. "That's insane."
"Well, do me a favor, if any Omega rights groups show up here please show them the door."
"This isn't a joking matter. What is Sherlock doing to fix this? Poor John. He doesn't like to be kept locked up. He once told me he was claustrophobic and being cornered by an Alpha triggers his fight or flight response. More fight than anything."
"I know." Quin murmured, recalling how the Omega had knocked him on his ass.
There was a knock on the door Quinton went to answer. "That's probably my annoying brother. He's been trying to call and text me all day. I've already told him to piss off. I'm not accepting a new assignment. I don't care what he thinks."
"Your brother only worries." Toby gave a half smile accepting the kiss to his forehead.
Joshua had passed a man in a suit on his way towards the elevator, Grandmere was with him. She had apologized profusely and even bought him a new mobile. He tried to decline the device but she was so insistent so he accepted. Toby had even texted that it was alright to return, best say goodbye to Quin. He was due back to the desert and god knows when JP would see his soon to be brother in law. He had reassured Grandmere that he wasn't angry at her and if she needed to get things off her chest he would listen.
JP was happy to see his brother and Quin standing side by side when the door opened. He knew right away they had bonded and instead of feeling abandoned or threatened JP felt something else entirely. Acceptance, his brother was finally happy.
"There's my little bastard of a brother." Quinton put JP in a headlock and ruffled his hair.
"Ugh, I hate you even more."
"Boys calm down." Grandmere laughed embracing the newest member of the family.
"Let's talk wedding planning. I think something formal will be nice." Grandmere took Toby's arm and led him towards the living room JP grinning as he followed.
Quinton shut the door only for their to be another knock more urgent this time.
"Alright you bastard! I'm coming. "
Quinton answered the door "Oh, sorry. I thought-"
"Quinton Hill?" The stranger in the dark suit asked.
"I have a message for your brother." The alpha in the suit holding a brief case announced casually.
"I don't take messages for Arthur the pompous-"
Toby heard the loud bang, three of them and the heavy thud, confused he stood up. "Quinton?" A dizziness struck the young Omega so suddenly he thought the building was spinning. "Quinton?" Toby pulled himself to stand, fear, and panic flooded him. It took a breath to realize it wasn't his fear or panic it was coming from their bond, so new it hurt. Quinton tried to take a breath, his body felt so heavy. In the corridor he clung to a wall, "Quinton!" He called out breathless. What was this drowning feeling he felt? On the floor in front of the open door, a spreading puddle of blood around his unconscious body was Toby's mate.
"Quinton!" JP was on his feet following his brother's line of sight.
He knew it to be blood and knew it to be Quinton's the distress was saturating the air.
"Non!" Grandmere gasped, "NON!"
Joshua could see Quinton's body laying there, his lips moving gasping for air.
"Please!" Toby cried, "Please no!"
"Great I dropped the call, the service out here is horrible." Sherlock snapped. "We'll have to go in blind. "
"No, Sherlock wait for back up I've texted Donovan and my team-"
"No time Lestrade, we don't even know if they got the text. I'm not saying we take on the gang, I'm just suggesting we make a few observations. Before they load the drugs up for shipping. "Sherlock peeked around the corner of the warehouse, several men were arguing.
"Get your bloody hands off of me!"
Sherlock knew that voice, he knew it, and it couldn't be. "John?" He caught sight of his lover. How was he here? It didn't matter. He started to run towards the men, but Lestrade pulled him back, bullets were being fired in the consulting Detective's direction. He didn't see them, he didn't care. All that mattered was John! They were pushing him into the white van, he was beating on the windows. Why was Lestrade holding him back! They were getting away!
Sherlock broke free, ducking past bullets, noticing one of the tires had been hit as it made a sharp turn. That gave him a little time to catch up. Just enough time for the villains to flee like rats on a sinking ship, Sherlock rushed towards the van only to be pushed back by the force of an explosion. The ringing in his ears, the heat on his face and the hot rubble raining down, none of it mattered.
John was in that van!
"John!" Sherlock pushed at Lestrade still holding him back.
"Sherlock! He's gone. No way he survived that. Sherlock!" Lestrade tried to hold onto the consulting detective. "I'm sorry, I'm so sorry."
"What have you done?" Grandmere Holmes demanded.
"Just what I needed to. You see, they turned on each other. My father, your son once said that Sentiment was illogical and debilitating. He, of course, was correct. It's a chemical defect found on the losing side. Goodbye Grandmere." Moriarty picked up his silencer he had laid carefully on the table and fired two bullets into the older woman. She tried to stand, a hand clasping her bleeding abdomen.
"You will die and it will be painfully ." Moriarty took his leave, whistling happily and nearly skipping out the door. What an eventful day, he could really use a swim.
Violet Holmes was disgusted with how her sons had completely just cut her off, even Mycroft had stopped taking her calls. It was all her mother-in-law's fault. Well, she would tell her off. However, upon reaching the woman's home no-one answered her knock or the doorbell. She let herself in. The bodies lining the halls had her frozen in place, then she snapped out of it. "Mama!" she called, "Maman! Êtes-vous ici?"
There was no answer and violet pulled the emergency alarm she knew was located behind one of the paintings. She continued to call out, knowing somehow that whomever had done this had to have fled the scene judging by the drying puddles of blood.
She didn't raise a morbid little boy without glancing at some of the ridiculously gruesome books that fascinated him. It took 15-20 minutes 30 minutes tops for blood to coagulate and clot, clotting disorders aside. An hour had passed at most.
The card room was her first choice and she found a familiar black clad figure laying just near the door.
"Maman!" Violet pulled her white scarf from around her neck. Blood. There was so much blood and the scent in this room was full of revenge and anger. The body was cold, but Violet still clutched the old woman to her, cradling the old woman's frame in her lap. Her futile attempts to stop the blood loss frantic, somewhere in the back of her mind a tiny voice of reason was shouting that the old woman wasn't breathing therefore it was silly to try and stop the blood.
"Please HELP!" Violet shouted "PLEASE SOMEONE!"