Kat was in bed early because she was so exhausted, probably due to the pregnancy. She could still hear her parents and Blake talking and laughing when she laid down and she smiled to herself. The weekend had been so perfect! There were times when Blake and her parents didn’t seem to get along well, so she was grateful that all had gone smoothly on this visit. Maybe the baby would bring them closer together as a family. Kat drifted off to sleep on a cloud of happy family thoughts.
Suddenly, she jerked awake, her heart beating rapidly. She automatically looked over at the other side of the bed and there was Blake, sleeping soundly. The clock read 2:12 am, so she’d been asleep for hours. All was quiet in the house but Kat knew something had woken her out of a sound sleep, so she listened harder. Then a scream, her mother’s scream, tore through the night and Kat started shaking Blake.
“Blake! Blake! Wake up! Something is wrong!” She was practically screaming in his face yet he was slow to stir. Was he drugged? Usually the slightest noise woke him. As he finally opened his eyes, the door to their room burst open and three masked and armed people ran in.
Kat screamed as one of the people grabbed her and roughly pulled her from the bed. She tried to struggle but this man (as strong and hard as he was, it had to be a man) held her tightly. If she survived this night, she would have bruises. She looked over at Blake and saw that he too was struggling with his captors but seemed to be losing the fight.
The intruders pulled both Kat and Blake into the hallway where she could more clearly hear the frightening noises coming from her parent’s room. She could make out furniture falling, people yelling, mysterious thumps, the occasional yelled curse and, disturbingly, gunfire. Kat was terrified. She looked at Blake being dragged ahead of her and her heart sank. Until that moment, she hadn’t realized just how much she counted on him being able to get out of any situation.
“Blake!” she screamed in desperation as the noise from her parent’s room abruptly stopped after a volley of gunfire.
“Kat!” he yelled back, trying to turn his head towards her. “Don’t worry!”
Don’t worry? Was he insane? Yet, right after he’d said that, the man dragging her down the hall turned sharply and shoved her into the guest bathroom. She fell back and hit the ground just as he slammed the door and turned the lock. Kat jumped to her feet and jerked the door as hard as she could. Nothing. She listened for a moment and realized that the intruders must have taken Blake into her parent’s study. She was being left alone.
Despite her usual analytic bent, Kat didn’t stop to wonder why, out of the entire family, she was the only one not being harmed. Instead, she quickly lifted the window, climbed out of it and landed in the flower bed. Seeing no one (not even cars, she realized later), she raced around to the back of the house to one of several hidden doors her parents had built into the house. Moving as stealthily as she could, Kat inched her way to her parents’ room which was now as silent as death. She carefully opened the door.
The sight that met her made her fall to her knees. Her parents were lying on the floor, her father’s body face up in front of their closet (there were weapons and an escape hatch in there) and her mother’s body face down closer to the window. It looked to Kat like Jatan had been shot first and Anna had tried to crawl to him and was shot in the head while doing so. She slowly crept toward their bodies, tears running down her face. She confirmed that they both were dead and then looked around the room.
Anna and Jatan had put up a good fight. Furniture was knocked over, there was blood on the walls and there were even two other bodies in the room. Kat had no desire to find out if they were dead but her SHIELD training kicked in and she knew she had to at least discover if they were a continued threat to her. The intruders were dead and she was shocked to realize that she was glad. No one should kill her parents and not pay for it! Kat took their weapons and put them in her parents’ wall safe. Later, she berated herself for not tearing off their masks to see what the intruders looked like or putting their weapons in a safer place (she should have realized that her parents’ codes were compromised) but stress doesn’t always allow for clear thinking.
She inched out of her parents’ room and did some deep breathing exercises to calm herself. As far as she knew, Blake was still alive and needed her help. She ran back into her room to grab her personal weapons (a gun and a knife in an ankle sheath) and made her way quietly to the study. She could hear the sound of men’s voices and of things being broken. Clearly the intruders knew that her parents had several safes in there and were trying to find them. Kat had never been told what the safes contained but it was a good bet that there were SHIELD secrets in them. Clearly, these intruders were well-informed.
She quickly glanced around the corner into the study and counted five intruders, two of whom were holding a still struggling Blake. One had found a safe and was looking through it. The other two were still searching for the other safes. Blake looked up, met Kat’s eyes, and then really started fighting. “No!” he howled. The three searching intruders stopped what they were doing, looked around and saw Kat. Although Kat had never been in combat (she was PsyOps for heaven’s sake!) and she certainly had never fired her gun at a person, she knew it was now or never and she fired. Two of her shots hid the intruders and Kat felt a moment’s satisfaction. Apparently she was a good shot! Her satisfaction was short-lived however when she felt two rounds hit her stomach.
Kat fell to the ground and heard Blake yelling. One of the intruders came over to check on her and she found the strength to grab her knife and slice him across the leg. The man grunted with pain. Kat felt herself losing consciousness but, in the distance, she heard the faint sound of sirens. She smiled weakly as she thought, “The cavalry is coming!” But she stopped smiling when she heard Blake’s yells stop and saw his body crumple to the ground. Then she blacked out.