Safe House: Graceland Fanfiction

Chapter 23

Paige laughed to herself. "Did you know that I am not in the FBI?"

Jessie looked up at her with a puzzled expression.

"I am in the DEA, but I work with the FBI and help them a lot." She gently picked Jessie up and turned her around in her lap so that the girl was facing her. Paige quickly took the cotton ball out of the crook of the girl's elbow, hiding it from her before she saw the small bloodstain.

"Me, Johnny, Paul and Charlie are in the FBI though," Mike explained. He was now sitting by Paige's feet on the couch.

"And..." Jessie said, turning her head around to look back towards the front door.

"And Jakes works for a group called ICE. They help keep people safe too," Paige told her.

Jessie seemed to be satisfied with their explanation and looked up at Briggs as he came back into the living room.

"Did I hear you say that you wanted to be in the FBI?" Briggs asked her with a big smile. He was carrying some files and loose papers in his hand.

She looked at him with big eyes.

"Come here," Briggs said energetically. He walked over to the dining room table and laid some of the papers out.

Jessie started to climb off of Paige's lap, but needed some encouragement from her before she would walk over to Briggs.

Paige took her hand and Mike followed behind them.

"Do you know what a C.I. is?" Briggs asked her, sitting down at the head of the table.

Jessie shook her head and climbed up onto a chair close to him.

"Well it stands for 'Confidential Informant' –"

Paige cut him off adding, "it just means that you tell us information to help us stop the bad guys. We keep it a secret so that the bad guys don't know you've told on them."

Briggs took out a form from the folder. "The FBI wants us to make you a C.I. because you're doing such a good job helping us," Briggs said.

Jessie nodded and peered over at the paperwork as Briggs started filling out the form. "Do you know when your birthday is, kiddo?" he asked her, seeing the "date of birth" box at the top of the paper.

"June 15th," she said softly.

"Do you know what year?" Briggs asked her.

Jessie hesitated. "Did you just turn five?" Paige asked her. The girl nodded.

"So go with 2009," Mike said.

"I can count, Mike," Briggs said under his breath. He wrote a short description of how she was connected to the case.

Mike walked around the table and sat across from Jessie. "Can I ask you a question?" Mike said, making eye contact with the girl.

She nodded and tilted her head to the side.

"You said yesterday that the LAPD policeman would get angry and yell about some mistakes that happened." He hesitated to gauge her reaction before continuing. "Do you know what kind of mistakes they made?"

Jessie put her head down on the table. Briggs, Mike, and Paige were watching her.

"Did they forget to do something?" Briggs suggested.

Jessie shook her head. "He yells a lot of things," she said, still keeping her head down. After a few seconds, the agents didn't think she was going to say anything else, but just as Mike was about to speak, she picked her head up.

"I don't know what it means," Jessie said quietly, "but he yelled that Top and my dad 'cut him out'!"

Mike and Briggs shared a glance. "That's why this dirty cop let the house get raided. They stopped paying him," Mike said.

"It doesn't fit," Briggs added, shaking his head. "Solano Sr. is paying him, not these street-level pick up guys..."

"Not the coke..." Jessie said, putting her head back down, "the little blue books."

Paige jumped up from the table and ran upstairs.

"Barone and Top had a side business going on?" Mike asked himself. It didn't make sense. Why would this cop think he should get a cut of ...?

Paige walked quickly back over to the table. "Books like this?!" she asked Jessie. She laid her US passport on the table. Jessie nodded and sat back in her chair, bringing her arms up close by her chest.

"My dad makes them," she said simply. She put her feet up on the chair so that her knees were pulled into her chest and wrapped her arms around her legs in a hug. "Katia wanted a book, but he said she couldn't have one yet."

"The cop didn't know about the passports..." Mike said to himself.

"He didn't know about the girls," Briggs added.

"Carlito was hiding the tinkerbells from his father?!" Paige said, picking the passport up off the table.

"We have to find this warehouse before he tells Carlos Solano," Mike said to her, "He'll shut it down. We'll lose everything..."

Briggs reached over to Jessie and cupped a few of his fingers under her chin, slowly picking her head up so that he could look into her eyes. He squinted at her, "How many books did your dad make, kiddo?"

"I don't know," she whispered.

"Like ten?" Briggs asked, "or like a hundred?"

Jessie shook her head and held up two fingers with her left hand.

"Only two?" Paige asked her, running her hand through the girl's hair.

Jessie nodded. "Every Saturday morning."

Briggs jumped up from the table and grabbed his cell phone.

"If there is a tinkerbell on that bus," Mike said to Paige, "you have to... we'll lose the case..."

Paige looked over to him with teary eyes. "We'll lose the girls."

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