AN: I want to take a moment to thank everyone for your well wishes and the kindness you have shown me in the writing of this fic. I am so glad you are all enjoying it and ignoring all my typing mistakes. I usually use spell check but it doesn' catch everything and I had been feeling so bad this last couple of weeks, I didn't proofread as well as I should have. I do try tho! I was a little worried about this chapter and have re-written it several times. I am going to be updating as soon as I can so I can keep the story moving along for everyone so please keep up the reviews and great comments that I truly appreciate very much!
No One Bites Back As Hard
On Their Anger
None Of My Pain And Woe
Can Show Through
Somewhere in Eliot Spencer's past
"Eliot Sweetie, would you help Emma clear the table? She can do the dishes since you fixed this great dinner. Right Emma?" Mary Spencer spoke to her two oldest children. She smiled at each as she asked them for their help.
"Sure mamma." Emma replied picking up her plate and some of the other dishes on the table. "Come on Ellie, I'll let you dry!" She teased as she headed past him into the kitchen.
"Very funny. I do not have to dry. That's your job too!" Eliot said as he grabbed up a handful of dishes and followed her. "Besides," he added coming into the kitchen on her heels. "Mamma said you had to do them. Were you not just listening?" He deposited his handful of dishes on the counter next to Emma's as he turned to head back for more. "And I still have some things to go over for my history test tomorrow." He added before disappearing through the doorway.
Emma smiled at her brother's retreating back as she began to fill the sink with water and soap. As he came back in with another load of dishes, she said to him, "you didn't have to use every dish in the house for this dinner, you know. And you especially didn't have to use the good china. If you'd used the everyday dishes, I could have just loaded up the dishwasher and been done already."
"No, I probably didn't, but since it was a special night for mamma, I thought it would be nice." Eliot said matter-of-factly.
"Yeah you're right. Mamma misses Aunt Marie and Uncle Marty a lot, and now that their son Evan has gone off to join the Air Force, they don't have as much keeping them tied down at home so it was nice of them to visit. And it was nice of you to make dinner special for all of them, I guess." She grudgingly admited, loading dishes into the hot water and setting to work on them.
Eliot smiled slyly as he added, "And it was fun giving you more work to do!"
"Oh, you!" Emma said laughing as she threw the wet washcloth at him. Eliot ran through the doorway to avoid the wet rag and came back with another load of dishes. "So not funny 'little' brother!" That would get him. Eliot hated being called on his height as well as his age in regards to her.
Emma was always rubbing it in that she was a whole two inches taller and a whole two minutes older. Eliot ignored her as he deposited the last of the dirty dishes on the counter next to her and snuck out the back door to go check on the horses before heading up to his room to study.
Roughly about 1:30 PM
Eliot Spencer was no stranger to pain. He'd been injured more times than he cared to ever admit, but when he opened his eyes some time later he was minutely aware of every single ache and pain he'd probably ever experienced. Being tied down to a hospital bed was not only causing his current wounds to throb to attention, his old wounds were making themselves known in the restraint of his muscles. He wanted to stretch his arms to work out the kinks, but his movement was limited. He needed to move, he needed to know he was not at the mercy of some enemy of his past.
When the hazy image of a woman in a blue nurse's uniform bending over him came into his vision, he thought maybe he was still asleep and dreaming. That was until his vision cleared up a bit and he could focus more clearly on her. There was a woman bending over him and he could see she was taking his pulse. He could feel her fingers on his right wrist just below the leather cuff that held him captive.
He thought again about struggling against the restraints, but his body was so tired right now and he was still groggy from slipping in and out of consciousness. He couldn't even muster up enough energy to try and move his hand, but the woman must have sensed he was awake as she spoke to him.
"Oh, good you're awake. How are you feeling Mr. Chapman?" The woman looked directly at Eliot and he couldn't believe how green her eyes were. They were the same deep mossy green color of the grass back home. Back home he thought. When had he been thinking of home?
Eliot couldn't help but just stare into their deep green depths and he didn't realized she'd actually asked him another question until she reached out and snapped her fingers in front of his eyes. He jolted a bit at that and managed to ask in a gruff voice, "What the hell?" His voice was raspy and rough even for him, but the response was instinctive.
The woman smiled at him despite his rough response and repeated her question. "I asked how you were feeling?" She seemed to be genuinely concerned for his health, Eliot thought. But that wasn't possible. She was a part of…of whatever the hell was going on here.
Her concern surprised Eliot though, as he tried to maintain his stoic but gruff front when he answered her. "I've been shot and probably died somewhere between getting shot and now. And I hurt like hell. That's how I feel." He managed to get out past the dryness in his mouth and throat. He sounded a lot grumpier than normal, but he was being held against his will here. He was again surprised by the woman's soft laughter at his reply.
"I bet you do hurt. Maybe this'll help some." She reached out and picked up a cup with a spoon in it that must have been sitting on a table near the head of his bed.
She scooped up whatever was in the cup and held the spoon out for him to take. He just looked suspiciously at the spoon and then at her. When he realized that she was holding a spoonful of ice cips his first instinct was to greedily latch onto the spoon, however considering he was here as a prisoner, he didn't know what might also be included with the ice.
"There's nothing here but frozen water." She said to him noticing his hesitation. "I promise." She added in a whisper bending closer to him.
Eliot wasn't sure if she was telling the truth or not, but his instincts were telling him for some unknown reason that he could trust her. Yet he continued to hesitate.
"Come on, Mr. Chapman. I'm not here to hurt you, I promise. Besides the sooner you get better, the sooner you can get out of here and back to your life, hon." The woman softly said as she continued to hold the spoon to his lips.
Get out of here and back to my life? Was she serious? Eliot looked at the woman; really looked. Yes, she was serious. She had no idea why he was being held prisoner here. She was just the hired help. Someone hired to keep him alive so that the man who wanted him here could deliver the killing blow himself. She had no idea what she was into here.
Eliot looked the woman over. She was probably in her early forties, but he was basing that on how she spoke to him. Like a mother hen. She didn't look much older than early thirties, so he knew she took care of herself. Eliot knew how to read people and if she wasn't in her forties, then she had what he liked to call 'an old soul'. She knew of a harsher life at one point. That was evident in her caring nature. Her choice to be a nurse perhaps stemmed from that caring nature. She'd see a lot of loss in her life.
She was also very attractive now that he concentrated on her face. She not only had those deep soul baring green eyes that seemed to be able to search out his soul as well, but she had soft plump lips that just hovered there waiting for him to… He mentally shook himself as he realized where his thoughts had been heading. He also realized that she had guessed his concerns over the ice right away. She'd read him too.
But it was her dark blonde hair that was her best feature. She currently had it pulled back and secured at the nape of her neck. He could feel his fingers just itching to run through the length of it. To release it from it's bond and see it frame her soft face. He was willing to bet if she let her hair go loose, she would melt a man's socks right off his feet.
She smiled softly at him. "Have I passed your inspection, Mr. Chapman?"
Eliot should have been surprised, but he wasn't. She read him just as quickly as he'd read her. He fought at the smile tugging at his lips. To hide it, he slowly opened his mouth and allowed her to feed him the ice chips and as he chewed on the mouthful, he watched as she slowly settled herself next to him on the bed. With his arms restrained at his sides, he was just barely able to brush her upper thigh with the fingertips of his right hand.
She continued to smile at him as she gave him another spoonful of ice. "That's good, but we might want to slow down. We don't want to upset our system with too much right now." She said as she scooped out one more bite before setting the cup back down on the table.
Eliot had instantly felt the relief the ice gave him going down his parched throat and hated the thought of not getting anymore, but he understood the need to go slow. He'd cared for his own wounds enough in the past, to know what his limits were. Besides he didn't handle anesthetic well, and he needed to be careful not to overload his system.
"We? Our system?" He questioned her as he swallowed the last mouthful of the nectar. "When did we get shot? I thought it was just me here in this bed."
She laughed at him. "You're right, I didn't. But that's what comes out when…" She stopped abruptly. She moved her eyes from him and seemed to be looking off to his left.
"That's what comes out when you're a mother?" He quietly finished for her. When she brought her eyes back to him, he could see the pain in those beautiful eyes.
She swallowed convulsively as she looked down at the man lying in the bed. Why in the world did she feel the urge to tell him the truth about herself? She didn't know this man from Adam, and yet she felt this strong urge to trust him.
"Was." She replied simply.
She sighed deeply. "I was a mother."
Eliot got it then. "As in not anymore." He realized she had seen a lot of loss in her life. "What happened?" He asked quietly.
She hesitated and for a moment, Eliot thought she was going to tell him about it, but then he saw something come over her face that seemed to shut out what she had been feeling. She was closing herself off. He recognized it instantly, hell he was a master of shutting people out and closing things off from others poking around in his life. He understood and backed off.
"So, what exactly happened to put me here?" He asked instead.
The woman returned her gaze back to him and smiled in thank you to him. "You were shot Mr. Chapman. You came here with two wounds and you were barely alive. But Dr. Richards was able to remove the bullets and stop the bleeding. You did lose a lot of blood, though and that's why you're so tired. But lucky for you we were able to give you direct blood transufsions from your brother." She reached down to check the IV that ran into his left arm by stretching across his body.
That's when Eliot looked up and realized the bag on the IV pole was red. It was blood being pumped into his system right now. His brother? Eliot had some memory of seeing the man when he'd first woken up, but he'd thought it was just a dream. There was no way it had been his brother. He only had one brother and he died when he was seven in a car crash with his mother. Unless… no, it wasn't possible. Evan was dead. He'd been dead over five years now.
"My…my brother?" He asked his voice a little shaky. "I don't have a brother."
The woman looked at him confused. "He said he was your brother."
"What…what name did he give?" Eliot now remembered the woman kept calling him Mr. Chapman. He hadn't really placed that until now.
"Evan Chapman." When she saw the look of sheer disbelief pass over the Eliot's features she was confused even more. "What's wrong?"
"My brother Evan died five years ago in…just he died five years ago. It's not possible the man who brought me here is my brother." Eliot looked around him suddenly trying to see what was going on around him.
When he saw only himself and the nurse, his breathing eased a bit, but he knew he was in danger. Real danger. This wasn't just an enemy from his past, this was his past. His past was coming back to haunt him. Eliot Spencer had faced a lot of different enemies in his lifetime and had fought many a foe to come out on top almost everytime, but he'd never faced the other side of this world. He'd never faced a ghost before.
"Mr. Chapman, are you sure? This man looks just like you. I've met the man, and he seems genuinely concerned for your well-being. He's not far, I can go get him for you."
Eliot quickly jerked to look back at the woman. Katharine he saw on her name tag. "No!" He tried to pull at his hands where they were still bound in the cuffs, but he was still so weak. "If this man were really my brother, then ask yourself why in the hell does he have me tied to a bed in a private residence instead of in a hospital where I should be? Ask yourself that, Katharine and then tell me this man is really my family. Ask yourself that and then tell me how the hell I can get out of here."
Katharine Malone Whitfield looked down at the man and realized there was something wrong here. She'd been feeling it ever since she'd taken this assignment. She'd known from the minute she laid eyes on Eliot Chapman that even if he did look exactly like the man Evan Chapman, there was something wrong with this whole setup. She couldn't understand the use of the restraints, but she'd trusted Dr. Richards. She'd worked with him at the hospital for the last 8 years. Quickly scanning the room she turned back to Eliot. "What do you want me to do?"