08/30/2005 Same Day 7:30PM-9:30PM
"If you know where Nick is, then let's go. We can call Brass and –" Catherine started.
"No!" Reilly interrupted her.
"What?" Catherine asked startled.
"Sorry Catherine; I mean we have to go alone. I don't have time to explain and normally I'd do this alone, but being pregnant limits my options here." Reilly said trying not to sound rude. "I'm sorry I don't mean to sound like I want to push anyone out, but it's just that I can't tell anyone else."
Catherine looked at her. "Tough; you want my help you're going to have to give me more than that."
"Okay." Reilly sighed. "You are the only person here that Nick's told about what happened to him when he was nine." She waited as Catherine slowly nodded. "Jackie Monroe was the name of that last minute babysitter." She paused to let her words sink in. "I didn't put it together with Ally and John until Warrick mentioned her name. Nick was taken by that woman and I have to get him back before she… before she can hurt him again." She paused again, this time to get her own emotions in check. "I called in a favor and got Archie satellite access to everything big brother can see and he's got a lock on the Jeep."
Catherine turned around to look back at Archie still in the lab behind her. He turned to see them looking his way and he smiled and waved at them.
"I need to find him first Cath; we can call Brass on the way there, but we have to be there first. Just in case… well just in case." Reilly's voice choked a bit as she tried not to think of what could be happening to Nick.
"Okay…okay; but we're gonna need help; we can trust Greg and Sara and they don't have to know anything else right now. You can tell them later if need be, but they can help."
"Alright; you get them and meet me outside in the parking lot. I'll get my car and pick you up. I'm driving a Gold Tahoe and I have lots of accessories."
Catherine rode shotgun in Reilly's SUV while Sara sat in back with Greg who was working the laptop that Archie was transmitting directions to locate the Jeep.
"Take a right at the next stop. They're at Lake Mead somewhere off this road." Greg instructed Reilly.
Reilly took the next right, barely stopping for the stop sign. No one was coming so it really didn't matter if she stopped or not in her mind. She was getting nervous and she knew they were about to find Nick. She knew it. She just hoped they were in time.
"He's okay Reilly." Catherine soothed, noticing how Reilly was white-knuckling the steering wheel. "Nick's strong and he knows we won't give up on finding him."
Reilly turned to look at her, smiling her thanks. "I just have so many things I need to tell him; and… and I need him to know."
"We'll make it Reilly." Sara said from behind Reilly. "We will."
He felt hands on his face. Small hands stroking his face lightly. Something about the touch had him feeling the need to get away from it; slip away back into the blackness of unconsciousness until he heard it. Singing… someone was singing; a lullaby, he thought.
With extreme effort Nick managed to drag his eyes open. His head was killing him and he couldn't exactly remember where he was, but he remembered this feeling. He'd felt this way before. This was the same way he'd felt when he'd woke up before… he'd been drugged again and this time it had been by Jackie herself.
Nick tried to move, but he was still restrained. He was still in the same room and she was removing the gag from his mouth as she stroked his cheek. He knew it was futile, but he tried nonetheless to pull away from her touch. She was sitting on the bed next to him and Nick could cringe at her nearness.
"Now, now, Nicky. Don't be that way with me. I've missed you so much, you know." Jackie said, as she removed the gag and tossed it aside. She began humming as she reached past him to something on the nightstand.
Nick followed her movements and saw a basin of water and she was wringing out a washcloth. She brought the cloth to his face as she began washing him off; as she worked she was humming that lullaby. He remembered her doing this when…when…before. He'd hated that lullaby since that time and hearing it now and in her voice again, a voice he would never be able to completely forget, he just wanted to crawl back into the oblivion of darkness. He'd rather be dead than go through this again.
"Just go away and leave me alone. Don't touch me." Nick said trying very hard not to let her know just how much her closeness was making him sick to his stomach.
"Nicky, Nicky, Nicky." She smiled down at him. "I'm just cleaning you up a bit. Soon you and I are going to be very close once again and you need to look your best. Are you hungry?"
"We're almost there now, Jim… I know… you can kill us later. Archie has the coordinates and bring the EMTs." Catherine said into her cell phone as Reilly slowly pulled up about five hundred yards from the front of the cabin that Archie had led them to.
Reilly listened to the conversation. She couldn't hear Jim's responses, but she didn't need to. She knew he was angry with them and she could understand that.
She killed the engine and the headlights as they exited the car to head around to the back end. Reilly opened the back hatch and reached in for a vest. Catherine ended her call and grabbed her own vest as Sara and Greg stashed the computer equipment and each grabbed a vest.
"Jim is angry and bringing an army with him and Warrick. He won't be here for at least twenty minutes, but he's coming in hot, so we have to hurry, Reilly." Catherine said as she pulled her weapon from her side holster and checked her clip and released the safety.
"I know. I got the gist of your conversation." Reilly reached into the vehicle for her service weapon and strapped it to her left hip. "I'm going around back and I understand if any of you want to hang back out front here."
"Are you kidding? I'm not letting you go anywhere alone, in your condition; I don't care how good an agent you are." Catherine said fastening her vest in place.
"My condition? I'm pregnant; I'm not dying." Reilly said as she holstered her Glock and rested her left hand on top of it. "Look I know I'm taking a big chance here, but I am fully prepared to protect myself and my baby. I'm good at what I do and there are three of them and four of us. I can do this; trust me." She paused. "I'm not going to put myself in danger. I promise."
"What if there's gunfire or we have to run from them?" Sara asked holstering her weapon.
Reilly smiled. "I don't run unless there's a fire under my ass. I've never been the running type, but if that happens I'll just shoot whoever's trying to chase me." Reilly took note of their genuine concern. "I'm trained to shoot first and worry about running later. You're scientists; you're trained to shoot if you need to. You guys are just gong to have to trust me." She said as she reached into the vehicle for the other gun she had and tucked it into a pocket on the right side of her vest. "Are we ready?"
"Okay – we just want you to be careful." Greg said as he looked at her.
Reilly reached for a couple flashlights and quietly shut the back hatch. "I'll be careful. Besides, based on what I've been told by Nick and what I've seen from you all in the past, I think I've got the best possible back up there is." She smiled at each of them as she handed Sara one of the flashlights. "Me, Sara and Catherine will take the back. Greg you stay here and watch the front. You see anything out of the ordinary call Brass or Warrick. Let's be sure our phones are on vibrate; no noise. Smith's a mercenary, so he's good." Reilly handed Greg the keys to the car. "If Sara or Cath come running or you see me walking really fast, be ready to get us out of here fast.." Greg nodded at her as he took the keys. "Okay, let's do this."