Safe House: Graceland Fanfiction

Chapter 7

Paige woke up and looked over at the clock on the bedside table. 12:43. She tried to get out bed, but stopped when she realized that Jessie's leg was positioned over her knee. The girl's face was under the blanket, but she saw a little hand resting on top of Mike's chest.

Paige gently slid her leg out from under Jessie and headed into the bathroom.

"Hey, how did it go?" Paige asked. Charlie was at one of the sinks washing her hands.

"Pretty good," Charlie said, "Paul's upstairs moving some of the boxes and storage around so we can put the room together. How did everything go here? Johnny mentioned something about burn marks?"

Paige exhaled, "Yeah, I guess Mike saw them when I was holding her. We got her to let us clean them. She's got bruises too and I know she's malnourished, but we didn't want to pry too much yet..."

Charlie was nodding at her. "And you got her to talk?"

Paige smiled, "We're getting there... she's said a few words. I think she's doing well, all things considered. She's sleeping in my room right now." Paige hesitated slightly before continuing, "Mike's in there too."

Charlie's eyes got big. "Wait, you kidding me?" she said, "I have to go get my camera."

Paige snickered and walked out of the bathroom with Charlie. She stood in the doorway of her bedroom as Charlie silently snapped a few pictures.

They quietly made it out of the room and Charlie led Paige up to the third floor.

Paige was impressed with how much Briggs and Charlie had gotten done while she was sleeping. Most of the boxes and filing cabinets had been carried into the hallway to expose the bedroom furniture that had been left in the room after Lauren was removed from Graceland.

"I got some kid-friendly bedding and I had to guess with the clothes, but we got a lot of basics and some sandals," Charlie told her. Paige went in and sat on the mattress. "What's up, kiddo?" Briggs asked her.

"So, I think we need to talk with her about undercover if we're going to get her to identify any of the Solano guys," Paige explained.

Briggs looked up at her. "Did she mention anything about where she was living?" he asked. Paige shook her head, "No, but she saw Mike's gun. It was on his dresser and she freaked out. Do you think she knows what it is from television or something? Most kids would think it was a toy, but she sprinted and hid under the couch." Paige's voice cracked as she told the story.

Briggs took a breath. "She saw someone get shot," he said simply. "Someone from the FBI is stopping by later to give us a stack of profiles — photos, lists of names... they want to see if she can ID some of them or tell us how involved they were."

"That might take some time," Charlie said, shaking her head.

"Yeah, I don't want her to think that we are connected to those people or to that house..." Paige said, "which is why I think we need to explain what we do. Maybe she'll understand and be more willing to —"

"Paige!" Mike screamed up the stairs. Paige didn't finish her conversation with Briggs and turned around, moving quickly down the steps to her room. Charlie followed behind her.

Jessie was still lying on Paige's bed, crying with her knees pulled up to her chest and her hands covering her face.

"I tried," Mike said, "but I think I made it worse."

Paige walked over to the bed and gently rested her hand on the girl's back. "Shhh, I'm right here. You're ok," she repeated over and over. After a few minutes Paige noticed that Jessie's breathing evened out a little.

"Can you look at me, sweetheart?" Paige gently asked her.

Jessie lowered her hands a little and opened her eyes. She looked over to Charlie and Mike and then back to Paige. She lifted her arms out to Paige, who swiftly pulled her into a close hug. "Do you want to go downstairs?" Paige asked her. Jessie nodded into Paige's shoulder. "Let's go get a snack" Paige said.

Charlie and Mike let Paige walk passed them, but before Mike could follow behind her, Charlie reached out and grabbed his arm. She took out her phone with her other hand and waved it in front of his face. "I took some really cute pics this afternoon," she said casually.

He looked confused at first, but she watched as his face changed when he realized what she meant. "You didn't..." he said. She smiled at him and said sarcastically, "Mikey, you know it's a house rule that there are no pictures at Graceland."

"Hey, Mike," Briggs said, walking down the stairs to get his attention, "FBI is sending over some updated Solano files — new intel from the raid I guess."

Mike squinted his eyes at Charlie and pointed to her phone. "This isn't over," he said. She just smiled at him.

Mike turned and followed Briggs downstairs, asking him more about the case. Charlie wasn't far behind.

In the kitchen, Paige was sitting at the table with Jessie in her lap. There was a small plate with some apple slices and few a pretzels. Johnny went and got some paper and markers; they were trying to get Jessie to draw.

Johnny sat down and took a piece of paper and a marker and began to draw a picture. Paige did the same. After a few minutes Jessie uncapped a blue marker and started to color.

Charlie noticed that the PediaSure was back on the table and that Paige had been trying to get the girl to drink more of it.

The doorbell rang. Jessie dropped the marker and curled back up into Paige.

Paige immediately started trying to keep her calm, explaining that Paul and Mike went to the door and that no one was going to hurt her.

Briggs walked back in a few minutes later with a file box. He put it down on the counter, making a joke about how much homework Mike and Johnny had to do. Jessie looked over at the box and her eyes started to tear up. Paige could hear her repeat "no, no, no" over to herself as she cried into Paige's chest, her little arms clinging tightly. Johnny looked over at the box and then back to the girl. "You idiot," Johnny said to no one in particular, "she can read."

Paige looked over at the box and saw that written in large print with a black marker was the address of the house that was raided with the name "Solano" printed underneath.


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