amy_rashelle: (Yours to Keep)
[personal profile] amy_rashelle
The Old Man was getting tired of Greg’s voicemail. He’d stressed time and again that they never let the phone go to voicemail. If he called then it was bloody important and they needed to pick up. He slammed the phone down as Greg’s voice melodiously asked him to leave a message. Where was the little prick? He’d been home from Moscow for nearly two weeks and had checked in once.

“Of all the bloody cheek,” he muttered under his breath. He picked up the phone again and waited as the ringing connected him to his secretary. “Tell communications that I want a GPS lock on Gregory Harris right now. And call in Kingston.”

“Yes, sir,” she said quickly.

Communications called him ten minutes later.

“Sir, there does seem to be a problem,” the officer said reluctantly. No one liked giving the Old Man bad news. “The locator is reading a temperature of five degrees Celsius.”

The Old Man pursed his lips. That meant two things, neither of which was good. Greg was dead or the device had been removed from his body. “Send a team to his flat and retrieve whatever you find.”

“Yes, sir.”

There was a soft knock as his secretary opened the door. “Sir, Mr. Kingston is here.” She held it open and Daniel walked in. He was dressed in a dark gray suit and blue tie, looking ever so the professional despite the pale look to his face. He was still recovering from his illness, but at least he could dress nice.

“Sir,” he said with a nod.

“Sit down, you look exhausted.” He pulled out a cigar and lit it. “Your partner is missing or dead.”

Daniel tensed. “Why? When?”

“Sometime this week. I’m having his flat searched right now.” He blew smoke out towards Daniel. “I think it’s safe to assume Krylov played a hand in this. It’s the only case he was actively working.”

“It could have been any number of people,” Daniel argued. “It’s foolish to assume Krylov.”

“He was sleeping with a woman inside their ranks,” the Old Man countered. “She knew who he was.”

Oh. That changed things considerably. Daniel ran a hand through his hair. “Then we need to make contact with Krylov.”

“No. The only thing you have to do is find the woman and get the information from her,” he said calmly. “Then you will eliminate her.”

Kingston nodded. “What’s her name?”

“Ilena.” He handed him a picture.

Daniel looked at the red head for a moment, frowning in thought. He had never seen her before, but he couldn’t shake the nagging sensation that he knew her in some way. It was in the eyes. “What does she do?”

“She’s a prostitute. Works for Krylov sleeping with men he needs information about. Better than a polygraph. Men say the damnedest things in bed.” He rolled a new cigar in his hand. “You have a week. After that we assume he is dead and begin cleaning up.”

When one of their operatives went missing the Old Man assumed they had been turned. It was the safest assumption to make for their team. Their lives would be cleaned out, their homes turned over for evidence, and any remaining family would be interrogated and/or killed. Everything was done to ensure that their operation wasn’t compromised.

It had never happened to this team, though. Kingston, Harris…they were the best. “I’ll find him,” Daniel insisted. “Alive.”

The Old Man lit the cigar. “If he’s been turned then you take care of him. I don’t want a trail.”

“I know what to do.” Daniel stood up and buttoned his jacket again. “I’ll be in touch.”

 Greg could feel the cold of the ground creeping into his skin. They had removed his shoes and shirt, leaving him in just his pants. The chains on his wrists were old school. A souvenir from the Russian GULAG era, no doubt. A message to Greg that he was now the enemy’s prisoner.

The room was silent and dark and cold. He was underground, that much he knew. The room had no windows and the only door was in the ceiling with a drop down ladder to reach him. It had taken hours after he’d been brought here for his eyes to adjust. There was no light except for the sliver in the door. It was all he had and he held onto it with all his strength. Pure darkness changed a man. It left him with only the company of his thoughts and nightmares. It could drive one insane.

They had beat him. The blood on his face had dried long since, but the aching muscles and broken ribs wouldn’t go away or let him sleep. There had been no questions, no threats. They didn’t want to know anything because they already knew enough. Someone had talked or else discovered who he was. That begged the question what did they want?

He dug at the ground with his fingernail. It was cement packed with earth. He could smell the dirt all around him. It was comforting to know something was real in this place. He turned his face down and pressed it into the ground. So cold, but it was real and solid. He needed the contact so badly.

Greg started reciting the alphabet backward in Korean and Thai and Vietnamese. He practiced his best swear words in Filipino. He recited the Saint’s Creed in Latin. He prayed the Rosary. He tried to remember what his father looked like. His face was already fading from his mind. So were the Old Man and Kingston and Ian.

Ilena. His finger subconsciously outlined her name on the ground. Had she done this? Had she turned him in to Krylov? It was logical to assume she was the culprit. She knew everything about him. She worked for men that paid well for information. And whores were just after money, right?

He closed his eyes tightly. Her face was clear. The curve of her body and the feel of her hands sliding down his back made him shiver. It was right there. She was right beside him. Her breath was on his neck.

“Why did you leave London?” he asked softly.

“Why do you care so much?” she asked in returned. She kissed the back of his neck.

He shivered again. “I don’t know. You were just a face then.”

He could hear the smile in her voice. “And now?”

Greg turned on his back to face her, but she never came into view. He could feel her, but he couldn’t see her. The chains rattled as he moved his hand back to touch hers, but there was nothing. All he felt was cement and earth. “Don’t leave,” he begged softly. “Please don’t leave.”

The breath on his neck once again blew warm, making him drowsy. The pain of his injuries faded some and the voice whispered to him softly once more. “Sleep, Greg. You’ll need it.”

 He watched her walk out of the mansion looking like a model. Daniel wouldn’t be surprised if Krylov had a few of those hanging around. He could also understand using this woman. She looked the kind that could get whatever she wanted from men. One of Krylov’s men pulled up in a black BMW and stepped out, holding the door open for her on the driver’s side. She kissed his cheek with a playful smile and got in, tucking her dress before the door shut.

This was it.

As the car rumbled down the driveway and onto the main road, Daniel’s Mercedes pulled out and followed her. He hated this car. It was shit and a target in this country, but it was also the best ride he could get in short notice. As much as he would have loved to take the Aston Martin parked next to it, it belonged to someone else he didn’t feel like pissing off that night.

The woman drove into Moscow and parked her car at a rented parking garage in the upper portion of town. Daniel parked along the street and slowly began following her as she exited the garage. She turned the corner and headed into the first set of apartment buildings next to it. Daniel slipped in right behind her and stepped into the elevator. She glanced at him and smiled a little before facing the door and pressing her floor number. From the corner of his eye he could see her reaching into her coat.

“I wouldn’t do that if I were you,” he said in Russian.

“You shouldn’t have followed so closely.” She glanced at him and let her hand rest beside her coat pocket empty. “Especially in such a piece of shit car.”

“It was an S class.” He turned to face her. “Be good for the cameras,” he whispered, putting a hand around her waist and pulling her close. The elevator cars each had a camera in the far corner. She pursed her lips tightly, but her hand rested on his shoulder. “Whoever you are, I hope you know what you’re doing,” she whispered. “And if you do, then you’re a fucking idiot.”

He smiled coldly. “You might be surprised how often I’m not called that.”

“Somehow I don’t trust you.”

The door opened and Daniel led her out, arm around her waist tightly. “Which room, darling?” he asked softly. “And if you get it wrong I’ll kill whomever answers.”

Angrily, she pulled her key out and unlocked her door several feet down the hall. He pushed her in and locked it behind them, taking the key away from her. “Sit down,” he ordered. “And tell me where Greg Is.”
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