Safe House: Graceland Fanfiction

Chapter 34

Paige's world went mute.

A swarm of agents came running. One man knelt by the FBI agent who had been shot; a few others ran over to Sulla's body.

Paige stood frozen, trying to understand what she had just seen. Why was Jessie at the site? What had happened while she was under in the warehouse?

"Paige!"

She could see Mike's lips moving, but the sound was warped. Her feet were immobile.

"Paige! She needs you!"

Mike was hovering over Katia, trying to pry Jessie off of her. The little girl was screaming and kicking.

"PAIGE!" Mike was in distress. He had been the one to shoot.

Jessie looked up at her for a moment and when Paige saw the look on the girl's face, she dropped her gun and bolted to them.

She and Mike worked together. Paige hooked her arm under Jessie to pull her up into the air and Mike grabbed her kicking legs. They moved a few paces away so that Katia could be treated.

The EMTs rolled Katia onto a backboard and were assessing her wound. The bullet had gone through Sulla and had struck Katia in the back. Paige didn't know if there was a second exit wound.

Jessie was treating Paige and Mike as if they were strangers; she forcefully tried to break away from them and they struggled to restrain her in their arms.

"Mike!" Paige cried. She lifted the palm of her hand up. It was wet.

He tucked both of Jessie's legs under one of his arms and placed his free hand on the girl's chest.

Jessie wriggled away from him, crying and screaming, as he pushed his hand up against her torso.

He pulled his hand away and looked at his palm. It was bloody. "I can't tell if it's hers," he said to Paige.

She looked down at Katia on the board. "We have to get Jessie away from here," she said to him.

"Give her to me." Mike took Jessie from Paige and pulled her tightly up against his body. He had one arm locked around her back, holding her arms still, and the other wrapped around her thighs. He started walking over to rest of the FBI team.

Briggs and Charlie were running past them now, towards the victims.

"We'll stay with her," Charlie said, gesturing over to Katia.

Briggs looked at Mike and Paige and then pointed to an ambulance across the field. "GO!" he screamed at them.

Mike picked up his pace, running to the ambulance with Jessie tight in his arms. Paige was right behind him.

He did everything in his power to not start crying. The girl was still screaming through her sobs. Mike didn't know what to say to her. Would she even listen to him? Did she know who was carrying her?

He ran over to the back of one of the ambulances and saw that the door was swung open. There weren't any paramedics inside- they had all run over to help the gunshot victims. He jumped up into the back of the vehicle and tried to lay Jessie down on the bed.

"Lie down. It's ok." He repeated the words over and over, but when Jessie felt Mike letting go of her, she reached her arms around him and grabbed onto his shirt. He didn't know what to do. He looked out of the back of the ambulance and saw that Paige was close.

She climbed up into the rig, and for a brief moment, Paige and Mike locked eyes. She could see the fear and guilt dripping down his face.

Jessie screamed again when Mike tried to lay her down. Her breathing was heavy and they could both hear that she was starting to hyperventilate through her cries.

Paige put her hands over Jessie's arms, trying to force her to let go, but it only made the anxiety attack worse.

"Did it ricochet?!" Paige asked him. Her eyes were glossy and she could feel the lump growing in her throat.

"I can't tell if she's in pain or not." Mike leaned forward and bent himself down over the bed so that Jessie's back was flat on the mattress, but she still wouldn't unwrap her arms from around his ribcage. The top part of the stretcher was locked in the upright position, but Jessie was so small that she fit on the bottom half of the bed.

"We have to see it," Mike said. He tried to make his voice sound gentle, but it came across in a panic. "We have to see if you're hurt."

Paige moved around him so that she was by Jessie's head and put her hands on the girl's shoulders to hold her down. Mike put one hand on Jessie's knees to keep her from lifting her legs off the bed. He reached behind him with his other hand to try and force her to let go.

She was furious about being restrained and Paige knew that the stress was too much for the little girl to handle.

"Look at me!" Paige said to her. "Look right at me!" Paige was inches from her face, trying to get her to make eye contact. "Mike and I are going to help you, and Charlie and Paul are helping Katia."

When Jessie heard Paige say the name, she shot her eyes up. Paige thought that moment might have been the first time Jessie realized that it was she and Mike who had been holding her down.

"Okay?!" Paige said. "The bad guys don't have Katia any more. We're helping her." Paige was now running one of her hands over Jessie's forehead. The girl had stopped fighting them off, but was still shaking on the gurney with her fists gripping onto pieces of Mike's shirt.

Paige smiled at her and nodded. "You helped us save her." It was working.

Mike slowly let go of Jessie's legs and grabbed onto her wrists tightly. He moved his thumbs back and forth over the tops of her hands and slowly pulled her arms away from his body. He moved her hands so that they were resting on the bed up by her ears.

Paige understood what he wanted. She was able to hold both of Jessie's hands with her one free hand, and moved them a bit further up on the bed so that her arms were gently stretched out behind her head.

"You told us where the bad guys would be and how to find the other scared girls." Paige continued talking to her and tilted Jessie's head back slightly so that the girl's attention wasn't on Mike. Jessie's eyes were lost in Paige's words and in the praise.

Mike hadn't completely realized how bloody her t-shirt was until then. He looked around and saw an open medic kit on the bench behind him. He easily found the trauma scissors.

He cut Jessie's shirt from the collar all the way down to the bottom seam and then cut through the top of each sleeve so that the front of the shirt could be covertly removed without her realizing.

He immediately began searching for any cuts or entrance wounds with the pads of his fingers. The blood that had soaked through the shirt was now starting to dry, and Mike was realizing that none of it was her own blood. Jessie twisted away from the prodding, but having her arms up over her head kept her somewhat stationary.

"Anything?!" Paige asked him.

"No... I don't—" Mike pressed his fingers into her sides, looking for an entrance wound in her ribcage. "I don't think any of the blood is hers..." He looked up at Paige and was finally able to take some normal breaths.

"Check her back," Paige said to him quickly.

They were able to roll her onto her side so that she was facing away from them, and Mike pulled the rest of the shirt away. The small bandages he had put over the burn marks were still there, but there wasn't any blood or other markings.

"Is she ok?!" A young paramedic had stepped up into the ambulance.

"The blood's not hers," Paige said to the woman.

"It's an anxiety attack," Mike explained.

"Keep her just like that for a second," the paramedic said to them. She quickly took the stethoscope from around her neck and listened to Jessie's lungs. Mike and Paige did their best to hold her still while she was lying on her side, but she was squirming away from the cold metal on her back.

The paramedic pointed to the band-aids and the bruising. "Cigarettes... domestic violence," Mike said under his breath to her. He couldn't tell the woman how they knew that, or that he and Paige lived together, or that Jessie had been in their care... He assumed that she noticed Paige had been undercover though. Under the bulletproof vest, Paige was still wearing the clothes that Sulla had given her.

"Umm, do you know how the... hostage is doing?" Paige asked her, changing the topic. She knew that the bullet had gone through Sulla and into Katia, but she didn't want Jessie to understand what she was asking.

"Critical condition," the paramedic said. "The helicopter is on its way to transport her."

"But she's—?"

"She's alive." The woman took the stethoscope and moved it around to Jessie's chest. The little girl moved her head down to try and see what was going on, but Paige continued to softly tilt her head back.

"Heart sounds are good, but there's stress on her lungs," she told them. Mike and Paige laid Jessie down on her back again, and when the girl saw the stranger, the tears come flooding back.

Mike gave the woman a look. "Would it be ok if you..."

She smiled at him. "Yeah, I'll give you some space." She reached behind Paige and grabbed the oxygen mask off of the wall. "Put this on her; it will help. I'll be right outside if you need any assistance."

Paige smiled at the woman and thanked her. As the paramedic left, Paige lifted Jessie up into her arms. She could feel her shaking and knew that she was probably cold.

Paige jumped up onto the bed and sat back with Jessie curled up in her lap. She tried to put the elastic strap of the oxygen mask around her head, but she wiggled out of it. Paige settled for just holding the mask close to Jessie's face.

"Hey, is everyone ok?" It was Briggs. He was standing just outside of the ambulance, looking up at the three of them.

"For the moment," Mike said.

"You, uh, you killed him, Mike. It went through his chest cavity."

"And into someone else," Mike added, still clearly upset about his shot.

Briggs stepped up into the ambulance and Paige realized that he was holding the purple blanket from her bed back at Graceland.

"I had to run to the car for something and I, uh, thought she might want this," he explained. He saw the blood stains on Mike's vest, but Mike just pointed to the pieces of Jessie's shirt on the bench behind him.

Mike took the blanket from him and covered the girls. Briggs looked over to Paige on the bed. "Charlie brought it in the car for Jessie when they—"

He stopped talking when he saw Paige's reaction.

"Is that how she got here?" Paige asked in a monotone voice.

"Clarke told her that Sid would be here and she couldn't get a hold of me... or you," he added darkly.

Paige wanted to scream at him.

Briggs looked back at Mike. "Can I talk to you outside?"

"Yeah, just give me a second."

Briggs nodded and jumped out of the ambulance.

Mike put his hand on the girl's forehead. Jessie had closed her eyes; the exhaustion had somewhat stilled her. Paige held the oxygen mask as close as she could to the girl without it touching her face so that she wouldn't fight it off.

Mike didn't know what to say to Paige. His emotions were scattered and he knew that she was raw as well. He looked into her eyes and moved his hand up, resting it on Paige's cheek.

"I'll be back in a few minutes." He took a breath. "And if I remember correctly, I'm supposed to kiss you goodbye."

He leaned forward and passionately kissed her. After a few seconds, he gently pulled away and touched his forehead to hers.

He stepped out of the ambulance to find Briggs, but when he turned to walk towards the FBI team, someone else caught his attention.


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