Sundays used to be so nice and peaceful… simple even. You get up, you go to church; you rescue a few people from a rampaging elemental then go have dinner with family. Why did people have to make it so complicated?
Things were looking like a nice normal Sunday. We were dealing with an elemental one minute and the next thing I know I'm waking up in the hold of a freighter headed south with some very tightlipped people making sure I'm staying hydrated.
I've never thought of canvas bags as a comfortable pillow and I still don't. My head hurt and felt like someone was still pressing it in when I tried to sit up… either that or it could have been the concussion…
Typical there wasn't a medic in the lot. Oh sure there was someone who could deal with bullet trauma, but nothing as mundane as a concussion. I mean… if you're going to give someone one, you should know all the inherent dangers and how to treat them but people never seem to think about that.
No, they see people get knocked unconscious twelve ways to Sunday on the trid and think it's just that easy. All I can say is someone really better check our security.
On the bright side, I'm home… or in Harborview which is close to home. The extra cameras came in handy, as did having a husband in the Marshal service, a brother who has enough magic backing him up to find me and the combined firepower necessary to bring me back.
It also helped to have actual camera footage of my attackers this time, several people who tried to blend in with the crew claiming they had no idea I was there. Hard to be believable when there's footage of you a) hitting me, b) carrying me on board and c) giving me water.
Blindfolds only work on the eyes…
Whoever they are, they're good and they're not talking. Case is better. We will know something. I hope.
I turned in my resignation today.
It took a lot of thinking and soul searching and I realized-yes I can do the job, but not with the way things are going right now. I've spent more time sidelined and unable to work since I took the job than when I was just in charge of the motormedic program.
Charlie said he understood, but he doubted anyone could bring what I bring to the table.
"Chaos and mayhem?" I asked.
"A fresh if chaotic perspective."
The CEO declined my request. He said he likes having me around because he never knows what's going to happen next and I make his life interesting.
Yes, job security through entertainment?
I don't know… but, as Charlie pointed out… I couldn't even get someone to take my place as head of the motormedic program, how could I hope to find someone to replace me as chief?
Sometimes all the pieces fall into place and what was unknown is suddenly known. On those occasions one can almost hear the celestial choir sing as the truth is revealed.
This was not one of those times.
Case's investigation ended in him being arrested and Internal Affairs taking over. I didn't understand it all until Nathan came home from his own investigation and asked if I knew anyone named Felix Lighter.
Felix Lighter, a name I haven't heard in over ten years. The fixer who's arranged for my kidnapping went by the name Felix Lighter. The same name used by the Marshal Service in general and Case in particular when hiring runners like my brothers for their more… clandestine missions.
Until IA can identify who this particular 'Felix Lighter' is, Case will remain under arrest and Bri and I are to remain in protective custody. Fortunately IA agrees that Council Island is the safest place for us. IA thinks we're not safe with Case around-I know we aren't safe without him.
This is all so wrong on so many levels. Who knew that celestial choirs sang the blues?
Today was an interesting trip into the paranoia zone.
I used to think I was paranoid, and lately I've realized that I'm just not paranoid enough. IA seems to be trying to make up for all the lack of paranoia I've been displaying and then some.
I tried to arrange to see Case, but IA was there trying to perform an interview disguised as an intervention.
"Why won't you accept the truth that your husband could have hired these people?"
"I accept that it is possible for him, or anyone to have hired them… My question for you is 'Why?' 'Why would he? There are much easier, much less traceable ways including the most obvious-leave me to my own devices."
I don't think they really understood until I talked to Case on the phone about arranging a visit and he just laughed.
"Jess darling," he said between chuckles. "You know full well that if you came here… with your luck? There would be a riot… a tornado… an earthquake. I don't think I can take that right now."
"You forgot flash flood…"
Case laughed again. "Especially the flash flood… you just stay safe and I'll see you soon, okay?"
"If I'm not busy with a riot… or a tornado… "
"If you're not too busy."
It's kind of interesting when unhealthy paranoia gets a good look at our relationship. I just hope they can clear him soon. I miss him.
I had a long talk with Jonathan tonight.
He saw the looks Nathan was giving me and figured I'd listen to him more than I would one of my little brothers. I think he was surprised to find out that I'd already visited my shrink over this.
I don't see him on a regular basis-he's more on retainer than anything. It's more like one of those prepaid service contracts where I'm covered for 10 incidents a year. If things keep up like this, I'll have eaten through that before well before the end of June.
Case is still in jail which, no matter how light he makes of it, is not nothing. I know he's doing it for me but he's a law enforcement officer in jail. He's in what they call 'administrative segregation', solitary confinement by a less depressing name. It keeps him 'safe' by keeping him out general population, but that's a long cry from actually being safe.
I know the union has supplied him with a lawyer and he won't go through the sort of nightmare I went through but keeping a man like Case in a position where he can't do anything to protect his family is probably worse than what I'm feeling right now.
I had a hard time explaining it to Jonathan but I think he understands. Heck, he's known Case longer than I have.
It doesn't help that IA has actually cleared Case of any involvement in my kidnapping. They were just too late to get the judge to sign the paperwork for Case's release.
I should be happy that he's only in there one more night but it's one more night too many and the angels are still singing the blues.
When they told me Case would be out 'first thing' this morning I forgot to factor in processing time. The release forms had to be reviewed, verified and signed. Then the forms had to be notarized, copied and filed in triplicate at the courthouse.
Once they were filed, they then had to be taken to the jail and then it had to be sorted, filed, copied and verified before they could even begin processing Case out.
I'm pretty sure I drove Jonathan crazy as he tried to keep me from carrying the paperwork over to the jail myself. Fortunately he knows I'm not the world's most patient person at the best of times.
In the end it took two rolls of duct tape and a 5th of coconut rum to keep me from getting in the way, and once Case was home well… the only person who even had a chance of pulling me away from Case was Bri and thankfully she had no intention of doing so.
Case is sleeping now, and I'm not far behind. I sleep a lot better when he's here.
This morning I woke up to the sound of Case having a nightmare. He was so tense he almost hit me when I tried to wake him up. Guess I'm not the only one who's got ghosts to deal with.
Today however, we dealt with them by giving them a picnic. I had been planning on going into the office, but when I came downstairs Mom Walker and Trina were packing a basket for us. I may be slow at times, but I can take a hint and after everything we've been through Case, Bri and I needed some time together, and a picnic in the Walker's back yard was perfect.
There are still a lot of questions, but for now I'll settle for coleslaw and BBQ chicken.
Copyright 2010 M.T. Decker