Please see part 1 for all disclaimers.
“Humm…” Johna mumbled watching a tall woman on the wrap-around porch that covered the west side and part of the north side of the cabin. Johna thought to herself that if the circumstances were different maybe she would of liked to live out here; nobody to bother her, no one telling her what to do or how to live. She nodded her head and a momentary sadness filled her as she watched the woman on the porch go from one side to the other. Shaking her head as if to clear it she decided it was time to get her Lacy back. She quietly made her way down the far side of the mountain. She figured it was probably a half-mile but then she really had no way to judge the distance. She was just glad it was all down hill.
Corey opened the door and quietly slipped in locking it as her blue eyes made contact with the green ones peering at her over the arm of the couch. Rachel was sitting exactly where Corey had left her.
“Everything okay?” A shaky and nervous voice asked.
“Yeah, I guess…I didn’t see anything.” Corey moved over to her lover and sat down on the floor pulling her plate towards her. “Sorry, forgot the drinks.” She started to stand but was stopped by a smaller hand on her arm.
“I’ll get them.” Rachel said as she stepped up the three small steps that put her on the same level as the rest of the cabin then moved quickly to the kitchen and retrieved the two glasses of tea her tall lover had already poured.
Corey sat with her long legs stretched under the coffee table as she nibbled at her lunch. Even the chocolate chip cookies sat untouched as she tried to shake the feeling she had. Rachel returned with the glasses and placed one in front of her lover then slid in beside her. “Are you all right?” the blonde headed woman looked at her companion then at her plate.
“Yeah…why?” Corey turned to her,
“You usually always eat the cookies first.” She pointed to the mentioned items. “So, what is it?”
“I don’t know,” she paused. “I just can’t seem to shake this feeling.” She looked over towards the fireplace. “My gut tells me something isn’t right.”
“Do you have any idea what might be wrong?”
“No.” Came the simple answer before she placed her hand over the smaller one that was on her knee. “I…” she looked into intense green eyes, “I think we should get outta here.”
“Alright.” Rachel agreed surprising the taller woman with her calm answer. They both stood and Corey grabbed her lover around the waist and kissed her. “What was that for?” Her companion asked licking her lips.
“Just for going along with me and not questioning my gut feelings.” She shrugged walking with Rachel to the bedroom to pack a few things.
“Is your gut usually right?”
“Yeah,” She thought for a moment, “it is.” She opened the closet door, removed a small box and opened it pulling out a small, 38-caliber gun. “Have you ever shot one of these?” Corey asked checking to be sure it was loaded.
“Only in target practice but its been awhile.” Rachel said furrowing her brow. She wondered if she could really use it to kill someone then decided it would depend on the circumstances.
She thought she would file that away for a later time as Corey handed her the gun.
“Just in case.” Corey squeezed her shoulders as the blonde woman turned the gun over in her hands. A noise made her stiffen then pull Rachel to the floor. “Stay here!” She said as she started to crawl towards the door on her stomach. “Damn…I knew we should’ve gotten out of here sooner.” She muttered barely above a whisper as she carefully opened the front door and peered out. She closed the door then crawled over to the side door closest to where the truck was parked. She stopped and listened for a moment before she opened the door holding her gun chest high with it pointing towards the truck, slowly fanning around the area. Silently pulling the door shut she crawled back over to where she had left a frightened Rachel. “We won’t be using the truck,” She stated crawling closer to the phone that sat on the nightstand. She reached up and grabbed it bringing it to her ear then dropped it on the floor.
“What’s wrong?” Rachel whispered.
“She’s done something to the truck. The hood was opened.” She paused and nodded to the phone, “dead” was her only comment. Quietly Corey moved from window to window closing the inside shutters. The entire cabin was dark inside except for the small rays of light that filtered through the holes put there for the purpose of seeing out. Corey was quite proud of all the extra precautions she added to the cabin as it was being built. She always thought it was just because she was paranoid and knew that was the biggest part of it but…”
“Corey?” Rachel brought her out of her musings.
Corey moved over to the window and peered out between the wooden pieces. "I don’t see her." She whispered.
Rachel remained where Corey had asked her to stay. Crouched down behind the leather couch in the fire pit away from the windows. Corey knew that even though she had managed to get all the shutters closed and locked they wouldn’t stop a bullet and she had no intention of putting Rachel in that kind of danger. Crawling over to her and sitting beside her Corey took the hand that was offered. "We need to get out of here.” She paused keeping a watchful eye on the windows. ”We’ll head off into the forest. We’ll have a long way to go on foot. Are you up to it?"
"I’ll do anything we need to." She said raising her chin in determination and looking the tall investigator in the eye. "But shouldn’t we wait until tonight?”
"Shh." Corey said putting a finger over her lover’s lips and listening intently. "She’s closing the outside shutters." She whispered as her eyes darted from window to window.
"Why?" Rachel questioned.
"She thinks she has us trapped." A lopsided smile crept across the investigator’s face.
"You mean she doesn’t?" A rust colored brow rose in question.
"Nope. Being the paranoid person I am I built in a way out of here just in case."
"I don’t understand. You knew something like this was going to happen someday?"
"Well no... I’ve been involved in hunting down killers my entire career in the FBI. It tends to make one paranoid.”
"LAACCYYY COME ON OUT!" Johna yelled. "I’VE COME TO TAKE YOU HOME!"
Rachel scooted closer to Corey and put her arms around her own knees hugging them to her chest.
"It’s okay, I’m here and I’m not going to let anything happen to you." She said putting a comforting hand on the younger woman’s shoulder. Lifting Rachel’s chin and forcing eye contact she said. “I love you, don’t forget that." She ducked her head sealing the words with a quick kiss.
"I love you too.” Rachel whispered. "What’s the plan?" She said taking a deep breath and squaring her shoulders.
Corey smiled, "Grrrr" she sounded and that earned her a nervous smile from the younger woman. “I would have preferred to wait until dark but…” Corey paused and took a breath. “I built an escape hatch on the platform over there. Where the throw rug is at the foot of the bed." She nodded in the direction she wanted Rachel to look. "All we have to do is lift that, drop under the house and at the back and on both sides I have removable panels. We simply go through one of them and head to the forest. We don’t have far on any side before we’re in the cover of the trees. Then we make our way to the nearest phone."
"You make it all sound so simple." Rachel regarded the taller woman.
"Not quite, there’s a chance she’ll hear or see us take off. Its just barely after noon." Corey searched the blonde woman’s face intently waiting for…well she wasn’t sure what she was waiting for…
"Oh." Rachel thought about that for a minute. "If she does,” She took a long deep breath and continued. “I want you to get as far away from here as possible. It’s me she wants and not you."
Corey ran her fingers over the tense set jaw of her companion. "I’m not leaving you.” She whispered. “We either both get out of here or we both don’t."
"But…" Rachel started to say more when a finger found its way to her lips effectively shutting off any protest.
"There is no discussion here." Corey told her looking into the green eyes intently.
"LACY…COME ON OUT AND I’LL LET YOUR LITTLE GIRLFRIEND GO!" Johna yelled cutting off any more discussion.
Whispering Corey said, "Tell her you want some time to think about it."
"JOHNA…GIVE ME SOME TIME TO THINK ABOUT IT!"
"NO…YOU COME OUT…NOW!"
"ALL RIGHT!” She paused “JUST GIVE ME SOME TIME TO SAY GOOD-BYE!" Rachel yelled back trying to buy them as much time as possible.
"She’s not going to wait." Corey said peeking over the couch to the front door. “We’re going to have to get out of here.”
“COME ON LACY…DON’T KEEP ME WAITING…YOU KNOW HOW MUCH I HATE THAT!” Johna yelled again impatiently. “LACY!”
Rachel looked over to the investigator.
“Tell her you’re packing your clothes.” Corey whispered.
“I’LL BE OUT IN A FEW MINUTES JOHNA. I’M GETTING MY THINGS!” That earned her a pat of comfort from the investigator.
“She’s not going to wait much longer, we need to get out of here now.” Corey stated not taking her eyes off the front door. She felt Rachel’s agreement when her head bobbed up and down. “Come on.” Corey started to move. “Stay low.” She relayed to her companion as they crawled out of the fire pit and over to the small area rug. Corey slowly raised the escape hatch in the floor listening to the hinges creak softly. “Damn,” She muttered to herself. “what I wouldn’t give for a can of oil.” She put a hand over one of the hinges to help muffle the sound. “Go on.” Corey motioned for Rachel to drop down. She quickly followed and slowly shut the hatch.
“I can’t see where she’s at.” Corey complained. “Come on...” She motioned for the smaller woman to follow her. “Let me go first...” She paused. “Head to the tree line and stay outta sight.”
Rachel nodded watching Corey remove the panel and crawl out. Standing she looked around turning her senses to the forest. Not seeing or hearing anything she motioned for the smaller woman to follow her out from under the cabin. Rachel slowly stuck her head out then she continued to crawl out. Without hesitation she did as she was told and ran to the tree line. As soon as she broke through the underbrush she turned to watch her lover.
“Gotcha.” Johna whispered into the blonde woman’s ear as she wrapped her arm around her neck putting her hand over her mouth and pulling her close to her body. Rachel sucked in a breath of surprise and tried desperately to wiggle free.
Corey turned at the rustling in the underbrush. “Let her go.” Her voice took on a deep tone as she raised her gun pointing it at the stocky woman.
Johna turned her gun on the frightened woman she held and placed the barrel to her head. “You put your gun down...now...” she paused, “and maybe I’ll let you live!” she hissed.
“Let her go and I will.” Corey countered.
Johna cocked the hammer with her thumb. “I’m not letting her go. She’s mine. She’ll never be yours.” She said kissing the younger woman’s cheek.
“All right...All right...just take it easy.” Corey said lowering her gun to the ground.
“NOOoooo!” Rachel screamed after biting the hand that covered her mouth and quickly turning out of her grasp.
It gave Corey the moment she needed. She raised her gun and fired a shot. The stocky woman moved and returned the shot with her own gun missing the investigator. Rachel ran towards Corey as Johna moved off into the underbrush. “You okay?” She asked the investigator. “Yeah, stay behind me...damn!” She said when she realized the heavier woman was gone. “I’m not sure if I hit her or not.” Corey said searching the area she disappeared in. “Come on.” She took Rachel by the hand and led her in the direction opposite the one she thought Johna had disappeared in. “We need to stay in the trees and underbrush. I don’t know where she’s at and I’m not going to make us a target. I’m sorry. I didn’t know she was there.” She said quietly. “Come on.”
They moved off into the direction of the road. The main road US 270 was 3 miles from were they where. Once there, Corey was sure they could get a ride the 32 miles into Payson.
“LACY?” They both turned at the same time to see the smoke rising out of the tree tops a short distance from where they were. “That fucking bitch.” Corey mumbled.
Rachel looked up at her “Your cabin?”
“Yeah, I think so. But as close as the trees are she just set the forest on fire too. Come on. Lets see if we can find her car. It wasn’t around the cabin so she had to have parked it down the road a ways and walked up here or we would of heard it the way sound carries in the mountains.” Corey reasoned.
They stayed close to the road keeping themselves hidden in the underbrush. The forest was thick and Corey knew you would never see anybody in the daylight hours let alone at night but she wasn’t taking any chances with her companion. “There...” Corey pointed at something shiny. Moving to get a little closer the outline of a car came into view. “Stay here until I check and make sure she’s not around.”
Rachel grabbed her arm. “I’m coming with you.” She said not letting go.
Corey took a breath. “Please stay here. I’m just going to look around, then hot wire the car. When you hear it start, come running okay.”
“Please Rachel.” Corey said looking at her not willing to back down.
“Okay.” The younger woman said.
Corey smiled and patted her hand. “See you in a minute huh?”
Corey circled the area before she cautiously moved over to the car and walked around it. Pulling the left door open she glanced at the steering column grinning at the sight. The keys dangled in the ignition. She turned the key and the car groaned a protest. She turned the key back and tried again. The right door opened as Rachel slipped in and the car roared to a start. Corey stepped gently on the gas pedal turning the car back around to the main road. “I’m going to get you down the main highway a mile or so. I want you to drive into Payson and call John...” Corey was cut off
“I’m not leaving you here.” She stated bluntly.
“Rachel...please. I don’t have the time to argue. You need to get some help out here. This may be my only chance to get to her.” Corey didn’t look at her companion, only the road as she navigated the curves and turns.
“Okay.” Came the quiet surrender.
“Call John.” Corey repeated the number. “Can you remember that?” She repeated the number again. “Tell him what happened and to get help up here now.” She finished as she reached a mile marker beside the road and stopped the car. “Payson is about 32 miles that way. Stay on this road and it’ll take you right there.” Reaching for the door handle she leaned over giving the woman beside her a quick peck on the lips. “See you soon...huh?”
Corey got out and closed the door. “Corey,” Rachel said before putting the car into drive. “be careful.”
Smiling at the blonde woman “Always” she said tapping the car as she stepped back.
Rachel drove the thirty-two miles stopping at the first place she found that would have a phone. She realized she didn’t have any money on her and explained to the woman behind the counter at the restaurant she needed to call the authorities. The woman looked at her reluctantly but pushed the phone in her direction. “Captain Daniel’s?” A pause, “Its Rachel.” She continued. “Rachel Woods. Corey needs your help.”
“What’s going on?” He shot bolt upright in his chair as he waited until the young woman finished explaining. “Okay…I’m on my way up there right now. How will I find you?” He asked.
“She set the cabin on fire you won’t have any problem.” She said
“No Miss Woods. Where will you be? Where are you now?” He questioned.
“I’m in Payson at Denny’s but I’m headed back up there.”
“No! You wait until I get there.” He said sternly.
“I can’t.” She answered setting the receiver back in its cradle before the Captain had a chance to say anything else. She looked at the bewildered clerk “Call the fire department but tell them to stay clear of the area. There’s a crazy woman with a gun up there and I don’t think she’ll care who she shoots.” The woman merely nodded as she watched Rachel run out the door. She picked up the phone, called the forest emergency service and told them everything she had just heard.
Corey raced across the street and stepped back into the trees and underbrush. Making her way soundlessly back towards the cabin she could see the wild animals, mostly deer and elk running away from the fire. She focused her eyes on the surrounding area watching carefully for the stocky woman who wanted to kill Rachel and her as well. “That won’t happen.” She said to herself. “I love that woman and nobody is going to hurt her.” Her anger welled up inside her. She couldn’t remember the last time she was this angry. “Well...” She thought, “at least I got Rachel out of here.” She continued her trek towards the cabin. As she got closer she could see the cabin was fully engulfed in flames. Her heart sank as she remembered the two years it took to build. The surrounding forest was on fire but the wind blew over her shoulder and pushed the flames deeper into the forest. The road to the cabin was completely clear. Stepping closer she spotted Johna standing in front of the cabin. She stood there with her head tilted back and her arms stretched out to the side. Corey silently stepped up to within 10 feet of her all the while keeping her gun aimed at her target with both hands. ”Turn around.” She told the other woman. Johna didn’t move. “I said turn around.” Corey repeated. Moving slowly Johna dropped her arms and turned towards the investigator. “It’s over.” Corey said noticing the gun Johna had was tucked into the waistband of her pants. “Drop the gun!” She growled while still keeping her weapon on the woman. Johna just stared at her. “I said drop the gun.”
“Why?” Johna said in a soft and pleasant voice. “Johna doesn’t want me to.” She finished.
“What do you mean Johna doesn’t want you to?” The investigator said moving slowly to the side of the woman and furrowing her brows.
“She said I had to do what she wanted.” The pleasant voice continued. “She’d be real mad at me if I disobeyed her.”
“Who are you?” Corey asked not letting her guard down for an instant.
“Lacey.” The woman responded. “Who are you?”
Corey just looked at her for an instant. “Lacey, you need to listen to me.” Corey softened her voice some.
“Ohh I can’t Johna wouldn’t allow it.” She responded.
Corey lowered her gun but kept it ready. “Lacey you need to give me the gun you have and come with me.” She paused. “Johna won’t hurt you anymore.” Se added.
Lacey looked confused for a moment. She shook her head and closed her eyes. Looking back at the investigator she pulled the gun from her waistband. Corey watched her intently waiting for her to make any move. She kept her own gun lifted and aimed with both hands. “Come on Lacy set the gun on the ground.” When it was obvious she wasn’t going to comply Corey took aim. Johna lifted her hands above her head with the gun still in them. “I’m not going to tell you again. Drop the gun.” Corey growled in her lowest register.
Johna let the gun drop at her feet. “Kick it over here.” Corey insisted. But Johna simply took a step back. The pleasant voice returned. “Why are you being so mean to me? Are you going to hurt me too?”
Corey held her gun chest high as she stepped closer. She balanced on one foot as she kicked the gun away. Lacey said in the same childlike voice, “Johna doesn’t want you to have that.” Johna jumped on top of her knocking her to the ground and her gun went flying out of her hands.
Johna head butted Corey then wrapped her fingers around her neck. She locked her elbows and leaned forward. Corey simply put both arms through the other woman’s and thrust up and out effectively breaking the hold and momentarily surprising Johna knocking her to the side. She scrambled to her knees and lunged for the stocky woman hitting her in the face with a fist. Corey could feel the bone shatter. The skin split and blood started dripping down the injured woman’s cheek. A sense of satisfaction passed through her. Johna made an animalistic sound that startled the investigator. Johna clasped both hands and swung her arms hitting Corey in the face and knocking her to the ground. They struggled for control as they rolled around in the dirt. Spotting her gun a few feet from her, she kicked at the heavier woman knocking her away. She turned to crawl and was taken down to the ground again. They both reached for the weapon. Corey knew she couldn’t let Johna near it. She rose off the ground onto her hands and knees and bucked backwards-taking Johna with her. Johna held onto her as they flipped over. Giving the stocky woman a chance to wrap her legs around the tall woman. Corey rocked from side to side.
A shot rang out. Both women were startled and stopped their struggling momentarily.
“Let her go!” Rachel said pointing the gun at Johna. She knew she didn’t have a clear shot, not with Johna holding Corey on top of her.
Johna looked at the blonde woman and slowly released her hold on the investigator. Corey was getting to her feet when Johna rolled over backwards and grabbed the other gun. She raised it to the back of Corey’s head.
“NOOoooo!” Rachel yelled and fired a shot that hit Johna in the chest. Momentarily stunned, Johna looked down at her chest as she put a hand against the pain she felt there. Pulling her hand away she saw it was covered in blood. She raised the gun she held in an attempt to shoot it. Corey had gotten to her feet and took the gun away from a terrified Rachel. Pushing the smaller woman behind her she aimed the gun for a final shot. Johna was on her knees swaying from side to side trying to aim the weapon. She managed to point it at the investigator but before she could pull the trigger she felt more pain, pain in her head then only blackness as she fell over.
Rachel peeked out from behind the woman who was trying to protect her. Corey felt her hands on her sides as they both watched Johna slowly fall over, blood pouring from her body. Corey only felt a sense of relief. Justification for all the women she killed. Rachel sucked in a breath as Corey turned and circled her arms around the smaller woman. “Don’t look.” She said her voice soft and concerned for her companion. “Thank you.” She whispered to the blonde.
“Huh?” Rachel said hugging Corey tighter.
“You saved my life.” She said.
“I couldn’t let her hurt you.” She murmured into the chest pressed against her.
“Are you all right?” The concern evident in Corey’s voice.
“I will be. I mean...I’m not sorry I shot her...she was going to kill you...I....I just....I don’t know.” She finally shrugged.
In the near distance Corey heard the sounds of the emergency vehicles approaching. A helicopter circled above them. Corey waved knowing it was John and letting him know everything was all right. The first of the emergency vehicles arrived. It was the state police. Corey watched as a tall heavyset man exited the car. “You Corey?” His gruff voice asked.
“Yeah.” She said not letting go of the smaller woman who clung to her. She briefly told him what had happened. He stepped over by Johna’s body. “Who shot her?” He questioned.
“I did.” Corey said not letting Rachel say a word.
“Mmm.” He grunted walking around her as a paramedic approached and knelt beside the body
feeling for a pulse. Shaking his head he stood and walked over to Corey. “Let me take a look at you.” The paramedic offered.
“I’m all right.” Corey said.
Rachel pulled back slightly looking up at the investigator. “Please let him check you out.” She said looking into the endless pools of blue.
Corey nodded and let the man look at the side of her face. It had swollen to the point her eye was almost closed. “You need to get that x-rayed.” He said giving her an ice pack to hold against her cheek.
“Thanks.” She said unimpressed, knowing that was what she had to do.
“Corey!” A familiar voice called to her as Captain Daniels approached. “Miss Woods.” He acknowledged the younger woman standing beside the investigator.
“Hi John.” She said nodding towards the body on the ground. “Johna.” Was all she said.
The Captain nodded. “You all right?”
“Yeah, thanks to Rachel.” She said a small smile starting to show.
He raised his brows looking at the blonde woman. “Well then. I guess I should thank you too.”
His mannerisms softened as he extended his hand. A smaller hand clasped his returning the strong handshake. “Come on let’s get you two outta here and you to the hospital.” He guided them over to the sheriff’s car then to the main highway. The helicopter landed on the highway again and the three of them boarded. Rachel watched out the window and saw the fire. Shaking her head at the sight she just watched as the helicopter turned and headed towards Phoenix.
“We’re at the hospital,” Captain Daniels shouted above the noise of the helicopter as it circled to land on the roof of the hospital. Corey watch curiously as four hospital workers stood holding a stretcher. She thought to herself that at least one was probably a doctor and the other three nurses.
“John I ain’t getting on that stretcher.” She protested, “I can walk just fine.” She felt the small bump as the helicopter landed and watched as the stretcher was rushed to the door.
Rachel put a gentle hand on the investigators arm and waited until the blue eyes turned her way. “Please?” Was all the smaller woman said.
“I’m not…” Corey started to protest watching the pleading eyes that looked intently back at her.
“I…” She looked over to the door as it was being opened then back into those intent green eyes. Then finally just nodded as the nurses helped her out of the helicopter. She didn’t realize how shaky her legs where before and was almost grateful for the assistance. She let the hospital personnel lead her over to the stretcher and lay down.
Rachel was beside her with a warm hand of reassurance resting on her bicep. The captain followed along behind them watching the interaction between the two women but saying nothing.
Rachel sat with Captain Daniels on the hard wooden chairs in the hallway while Corey was in the x-ray room. He reached over a patted the blonde woman’s hand whose eyes were glued on the closed door. “Don’t worry, she’ll be fine.” He chuckled trying to put the younger woman at ease. “I remember, not long after she joined us here we were out in the field. We had a suspect cornered in an old abandoned warehouse downtown. The building was to be demolished the following day to make way for the new Baseball Stadium.” He paused “Corey,” he chuckled “decided she was going to get around him. There was a catwalk that went around the entire wall. Problem was it was three stories off the ground. She climbed the small staircase that led to a ladder while the rest of us distracted him. She crawled along the catwalk mostly on her belly until she was above the suspect.” He paused again chuckling and shook his head. “She stood up and yelled down for him give himself up. Well, when she stood up and put her weight on only one side of the catwalk it gave way. She jumped free and landed on some boxes that cushioned her fall. The suspect was so surprised when he turned around and there’s Corey laying on the boxes pointing her gun at him only inches from his head.” John chuckled at the sight he was remembering. ”I guess he figured it just wasn’t worth it anymore so he just gave up. After we got our suspect into custody I turned back around to find Corey. She was still lying on the boxes. I walked back over to her. She had her hands across her stomach and was whistling. I offered her a hand up.” He paused again thinking. “She said ‘Can’t cap, broke my leg’ then tried to laugh and grabbed at her sides. We found out later she also broke two ribs.” He patted her hand again “Don’t worry, she’s a tough one. She’s probably in there right now telling them how to do their jobs.” He finished and the door opened. Corey was still on the stretcher and Rachel was beside her the instant they brought her out.
“Hey.” Corey said looking up into misty green eyes. “I’m alright, just a bump on the head.”
“I’ve been trying to cheer her up, I told her about the catwalk incident.” Captain Daniels piped in.
“Oh great, let her know what a klutz I am.” Corey groaned finally getting a smile from her lover.
“Sorry, I’ve always been accused of worrying too much.” Rachel said not letting go of the hand she held in her own. A gesture that wasn’t missed by the Captain.
The doctor finally entered the room Corey had been wheeled to. “Well, Miss Van I reviewed the x-rays and there aren’t any broken bones. However you do have a very mild concussion. We can keep you here overnight if you want, but as long as you take it easy for a couple of days, you’ll be good as new.” Before he had a chance to say anything else Corey was getting to her feet and draping an arm over the shoulder of her waiting companion.
“Thanks Doctor, no offense…but I’m outta here.” Corey said grinning at the doctor as he chuckled slightly.
“I’ll write you a prescription for some pain killers. But,” he held up one finger to make a point. “I don’t want you taking anything for the next four hours.” He said sternly.
Corey nodded and grabbed her head. She closed her eyes at the pain that shot through her. It almost made her nauseous.
“That’s the reason I don’t want you to take anything just yet. You do have a head injury, granted its not as bad as it could be but it’s better that there aren’t any drugs in your system. Go home put an ice pack over your eye. It’ll help bring the swelling down and I guarantee it will help with the pain. The whole side of your face is going to be black and blue for a few days. If the swelling doesn’t come down by this time tomorrow I want you back in here to see me.” He shook a finger at her and she raised an eyebrow at him but agreed.
“Come on, I have a car waiting for us.” John supplied watching as Rachel stood at Corey’s side and put the long arm around her shoulders and she in turn placed her own arm around Corey’s waist.
“I can walk you know.” Corey said softly then added, “But thanks I prefer it this way.” That earned her a dazzling smile. “Lead on Cap.” Corey extended her other arm out.
Captain Daniels pulled up to the condo and Corey told him where to park. “I won’t be needing it for awhile.” She said then received the oddest look from her lover. “What’s wrong?”
“All this time I never even gave my car a second thought.” She paused turning her vision inward. “Do you know where it’s at?” She looked up into a very swollen blue eye.
“Ahh…yeah, I guess I forgot about it too. It’s in lockup. I had it towed after I first talked to you. Wanted to dust it for prints, just in case she touched it.” She stopped and shrugged her shoulders but not without a winch. “Sorry, guess I forgot about it to.”
Don’t worry about it Miss Woods I’ll have it brought over to you in the morning.” Captain Daniels offered helping the injured Corey out of the car.
“Thank you Captain Daniels but please call me Rachel.” The blonde woman smiled at the Captain.
“Only if you call me John.” Corey looked from one to the other and knew at that moment something passed between them. Somehow she knew she wouldn’t have to explain to John later about their relationship. She watched the young, blonde headed woman nod. Captain Daniels walked along beside them trying to remember where the condo was. He had only been here once and walked along with Corey not really paying to much attention as to where he was.
“John I’m really okay…if you want to…” She was abruptly cut off.
“I know you’re tough and all that Corey but I am going to walk you to your door and deposit your butt on the couch, threaten you to stay still and quiet for a couple of days…then I’ll umm.” He looked over at a giggling Rachel.
“You think that’s funny huh?” Corey growled at her lover.
“Yep.” Was the only answer she got.
Corey stopped a few feet from her door making the others halt their steps as well. ‘John I never leave the lights on.” Corey whispered pushing Rachel behind her as she and Captain Daniels drew their guns. The investigator pushed Rachel behind a bush. “You stay here.” She demanded and raised a finger forestalling any protest. John was standing on one side of the door and Corey took up position on the other side. Slowly she reached over, turned the knob and swung the door open. She ducked low and the Captain went high. She was the first to step through. She and John meticulously went from room to room checking for anybody. After the bedroom was checked they both holstered their weapons.
“Corey…” John interrupted her thoughts as she looked at the bed that had been shredded. “I’m going to go call for the forensic team. Do you want me to send in Rachel?” That brought the sad blue eyes to meet his own. She shook her head no.
“I’ll do it.” She stated as they both turned and walked down the hall to the living room and out the door. “Rachel.” Corey motioned her to come forward but stepped away from where Rachel would be able to see inside. “Someone trashed the condo, we won’t be able to stay here.”
“Can I see?”
“I’d rather you didn’t but if you really want to.”
Corey put her arm around the smaller woman and led her to the doorway. “Let’s not go in or touch anything. John went to call for a forensic team.”
“Do you think it was Johna?” Rachel asked looking at the mess in the living room.
“Yeah.” Was the only answer. “That would explain how she found us up there.”
Rachel began to cry.
Corey circled the smaller woman with her arms holding her close. “Shh...I got you.” She tried to comfort her.
Moments passed without either woman speaking, only clinging to each other for comfort. Finally Rachel was the first to speak. “I’m so sorry.” She said clinging to the investigator’s shirt.
Corey looked down at her puzzled. “Sorry...for what?”
“You lost everything because of me.” She said sniffing back more tears.
Corey pulled her tighter to her body running her hand up and down the smaller back. “No...” She said wanting to chose her words carefully. “Because of you I have gained everything. You showed me what it was to live again, to share again.” She tilted the blonde head up until green met blue, “and to love again.”
“I love you too.” Rachel whispered losing herself in the endless blue. “I’m sorry about the cabin. I know how much it meant to you.”
“You know, I used to think it meant alot too until I had you in my life. Then I realized it was just stuff. And you are what’s most important to me. Maybe someday I’ll rebuild it.” She shrugged still holding Rachel when John returned.
He cleared his throat “they’re on the way…here.” He handed Corey the keys to his car. “Go on and get outta here. I’ll stay until they get here.” Corey didn’t argue she simply walked Rachel down the sidewalk and to the car.
“Where are we going? We can’t go to my place, I guess its in the same condition. Ohh…Corey, I’m so sorry.” Rachel added as her eyes misted over again.
Corey circled the smaller woman’s neck and pulled her close. “Hey…everything is going to be alright. We have each other. Isn’t that the important stuff?” She watched as the blonde head bobbed up and down. “Okay then…” She paused thinking. “I don’t know about you but I sure could use a room with a spa. Hummm…….” That earned her a smile. “I know just the place.”
Corey started the car and pulled out onto the street. A few moments later she was pulling into the drive of The Point just off of 16th street and Northern.
“Corey…” Rachel started hesitantly “I checked on rooms here once. They were pretty expensive.” She finished as Corey stopped the car and a valet came to meet her at the front door.
“Its okay, we’ll charge it to the department. After tonight, they owe me one.” She grinned as much as her swollen face would allow.
A woman behind a very elegant counter made of mostly marble looked up as the two women entered. She sucked in a breath when she looked at the battered investigator. “Corey?” She said almost hesitantly.
“Yeah,” Corey chuckled. “its me.” She continued to walk towards the counter. “Got a room?”
“For you always.” The cheerful voice proclaimed. “But I just got ask…what the hell happened to you?”
“Let’s just say…” She looked over at a curious Rachel, “I got the bad guy.”
The woman chuckled and shook her head. “Well my friend, if you look like that I sure would hate to see the other guy.” She handed Corey a set of key cards “Any luggage?”
“Hum…no…my place was broken into and all my clothes where shredded.” Corey looked down at herself for probably the first time that day. “Guess we better wash these out tonight.” She looked over at her shorter companion who agreed with her.
“Tell you what, I’ll send over some bath robes and you can send your clothes with the maid. She’ll take care of them for you. How’s that?” The middle-aged woman asked.
“Thanks aunt Laura.” Corey said smiling at the surprised look on her lover’s face. “Guess I forgot to mention that huh?”
“Yeah.” Rachel said extending her hand over the counter, “Hi, I’m Rachel.”
“Nice to meet you.” Laura took the offered hand and nodded at her them looked at the investigator. “Better get her to the suite before she collapses.”
Rachel looked over at Corey who was just barely maintaining her balance. “Yeah…thank you.”
Rachel put her arm around the tall woman’s waist and led her the way Laura pointed checking the door key numbers. Rachel used the card in the locking mechanism watching as a small green light illuminated then she pushed the door open. Stepping in she quickly found the light switch and turned it on. Standing for a moment to take in the room. It was large with a big screen television that was surrounded by a solid oak entertainment center on the wall. Opposite the television was a comfortable looking couch. She helped her friend over to the couch and sat her down. To the right was a small refrigerator stocked with soda and snacks. Behind her was a door to a very large bedroom that had a perfectly made king-size bed in the middle of it. A walk in closet and a bathroom complete with a hot tub made up the rest of the room. “Corey…this is great.” Rachel said appearing in the doorway of the bedroom.
“Thought you might like it.” A knock on the door made her get to her feet. Then a hand was on her arm.
“I’ll get it.” She motioned for Corey to sit back down. It was the maid with the bathrobes. She offered to wait until they could change and take their clothes. A young man walked up to the door at the same time with a tray of sandwiches and a picture of ice tea. “I didn’t order…”
He held up a note.
Thought you could use these too.
“Ohh.” She motioned the young man in and asked him to put them on the table in front of the couch. He stopped cold when he looked up at the battered investigator then started to put the tray down without looking at what he was doing. Corey jumped and grabbed the tray before everything went on the floor.
“S..s..sorry ma’am!” He stuttered quickly leaving the room.
Rachel sat beside Corey on the couch wrapped in the bathrobe after giving the maid their clothes. “How about we take this tray to the tub with us?” Corey offered. “I know I could really use it.”
“Sounds good but I’m going to step into the shower first and wash my hair. I know its gotta smell like smoke.” Rachel extended her hand, “You interested?” Corey put her much larger hand in the one offered her and followed her lover to the shower.
“Ahh…” They both said in unison as they lowered themselves in the hot water of the tub. After a rather stimulating shower, it turned into more of an exploration of each other. Rachel was intent on washing every inch of the investigator with only soapy hands. Corey reciprocated by washing her lover beginning with the top of her head and ending when she tickled her toes. If Corey hadn’t been so sore from her encounter with Johna only hours ago Rachel would have led her to the bed. But instead she thought the warm water of the spa would do her lover a world of good. Corey circled the smaller woman’s shoulder with a long arm pulling her close and kissing her soundly. Hands began to roam again as the two lovers lost themselves in the feeling and sensation each other. Corey suddenly reached down and picked up the somewhat surprised Rachel and deposited her on her lap facing her. Corey’s hands circled under breast as her thumbs gently rolled over taut nipples. “I want you.” Corey growled in a low husky voice. Not giving Rachel a chance to answer she continued. “I’m going to take you right here. Any objections?” Corey finished looking into deep, passion filled, green eyes and feeling a gentle finger run down the side of her face. The dark headed woman pulled her lover to her raising her up somewhat and capturing a nipple between neat white teeth. Rachel arched into the sensation as it sent a jolt of passion directly to her already over-stimulated center.
“Oh yes.” Rachel moaned her approval, her head thrown back as she felt Corey push two fingers into her. Raising and lowering herself on the most wanted intrusion, Rachel’s hands went behind the investigator’s neck holding her head as her breasts were being lovingly suckled. First one then the other. Rachel knew it wouldn’t be long before she crossed over into sensations and feelings that only Corey could give to her. Her hips moved faster and she felt the sucking getting harder on her breast. “Corey.” The blonde headed woman said as she moved faster and more erratically. She pulled Corey’s head away from her breast intent on kissing the taller woman. Just as she captured the waiting lips she felt her lips being parted and gave entrance to the questing muscle. She heard Corey moan into her mouth and that was all it took for her to reach her pinnacle. Her body stiffened. Corey kept her lips glued to the smaller ones more feeling then hearing her name called out. She loved the way that felt and often indulged herself unless of course her lips and tongue were busy elsewhere.
Rachel went completely limp. She knew her lover would keep her safe and hold her tight. “I got you.” Corey soothed rubbing the smaller woman’s back in slow circles. “I love the way you respond to my touch,” She continued. “I love you.”
Rachel lifted her head looking into the beautiful blue eyes behind the dark locks she pushed out of the way. “I love you too.” She whispered getting lost in the love she felt for her companion.
Long moments later Corey broke the silence. “Come on.” She said patting the bare back of her lover. “Let’s get outta here. I’m turning into a prune.” She rose to her feet as green eyes watched the water roll down the tall, tanned body and licked her lips. Corey watched her lover in fascination as Rachel knelt and circled the top of her thighs and kissed the dark patch of hair, moving up to her belly button and finally standing in front of her. Corey couldn’t help herself, she pulled the blonde headed woman to her and just hugged her for a very long moment.
“What was that for?” Rachel purred.
Shrugging Corey looked back at her as she stepped out of the tub. “Just felt like doing that. Do I need a reason?”
“No.” Was the quiet answer as she felt herself being dried off with a soft, fluffy towel before she felt herself being lowered to the large, king sized bed.
“I need you.” The taller woman growled into the pink ear of her companion after laying herself on top of her lover.
“Come up over me.” Rachel said grabbing the sides of her companion and helping her get into position.
“I have a better idea.” Corey said turning around and spreading the younger woman’s legs.
“Last time we did this I bit you.” Rachel reminded her lover blushing at the confession.
“Humm…I know…happens.” Corey said lowering herself to the waiting mouth and bending forward to get to her lover’s center.
Somehow Corey managed to turn herself around and take her lover into her arms. Her breathing was still erratic as she tried in vain to slow it down. “I don’t think I could move another muscle if I tried.” She said wearily “I don’t think I’ve ever come that hard before.” Her breathing was finally slowing to something that resembled normal, “Sorry about biting you.” she finished sheepishly.
Rachel snuggled into the arms that were more then willing to hold her tight. “Humm…happens.” She grinned feeling her lover chuckle and snuggle closer as they both drifted off into a contented sleep.
Corey jerked and sat bolt upright in bed. Her eyes darting around the unfamiliar room until she felt a warm hand on her back rubbing the warm skin. “Hey…” Rachel murmured, “you okay honey?” Her brows furrowed feeling the agitation slowly subsiding.
Corey laid back against the mattress covering her eyes with her arm and took a long, slow, deep breath before answering. “Just a bad dream I guess.” She tried to smile at the worried look in Rachel’s eyes.
“You want to talk about it?” Rachel offered. “Every time I had them you always told me it helped to talk them out.”
“Its…I…” Corey shook her head raising herself up on her elbows. “I wasn’t in time to save you and Johna…well…she just kinda…” Corey shuddered at the thought and laid back down taking Rachel into her arms. “It was just a dream.” She said holding her lover tight against her. “How about some breakfast?” She offered.
“Hum…sounds good. I’m starved.” She let Corey get away with changing the subject but knew they would get back to it later. “Room service…or?”
“Why don’t we get dressed and go over to the restaurant? That is if you don’t mind being seen with me looking so beat up.” She tried to make it sound light and even smiled afterwards but Rachel knew it bothered her.
“Don’t be goofy of course I don’t mind. I’m very…very proud to be seen with you anywhere, anyhow, anytime. But…” She thought about it for a moment. “do you think our clothes are back?”
“Oh yeah, Aunt Laura brought them in last night after you went to sleep. They’re in the living room.” Corey chuckled at the surprised look on her lover’s face and cupped her cheek. “Don’t worry, Laura knows.”
“Sorry I guess I’m not used to people knowing. John knows too…doesn’t he?” Rachel ventured to guess.
“After last night I would say yes, before that…” She thought for a moment and shrugged “Maybe. Speaking of which…I better give him a call. He doesn’t know where we are.” She reluctantly untangled herself from the very warm Rachel and stood trying to stretch out the kinks. “I bet I’d be a lot sorer if we hadn’t used that tub last night.”
“Hum…” Rachel watched as the long body stretched out before her. “Some of the bruising is already fading a little. And the side of your face is a lot less swollen.”
“All the TLC from you love.” Corey told her reaching over rubbing the side of her lover’s jaw with long fingers. “Thank you.”
Rachel captured the hand in her own and kissed the tip of every finger and the palm. “I love you,” She finally muttered looking into those beautiful blue eyes.
Corey kissed her and went into the living room to retrieve the now clean clothes tossing them on the bed before disappearing into the bathroom. She turned the shower on and leaned against the shower stall crossing her arms over her bare chest and waited. A moment later a very naked, delicious looking Rachel entered the room about to say something then closed her mouth as she eyed the smirk on the investigator’s face. “Am I that predictable?”
“Hum…I think you just like the way I always wash behind your ears.” Corey countered stepping into the shower with a bemused Rachel following.
“Morning John.” Corey said into the phone resting on the small table in the living room. She was picking at a plate of fruit they decided to order in since the shower had taken on more then just getting each other clean.
“Jesus Corey where are you?” He jumped to his feet startling his wife.
“At The Point.” She offered.
“The Point…damn Corey…you should of let me know you were alright.” He chastised her.
“Yeah, you’re right. When we got here last night I just wanted a nice hot shower and a bed. Sorry” She added as an after thought. Actually it never entered her mind to call John last night but she wouldn’t let her friend know that.
“We got your place secured, the forensic team got everything they need so…” He wasn’t sure how to finish the sentence. “Do you want me to send Rachel’s car over there?”
“No, why don’t you have it sent to your place. I’ll bring your car back to you and we’ll pick hers up.” Corey reasoned looking at her lover as she combed her long hair.
“Okay. How about staying for a BBQ?” He offered, “I‘d like to get a chance to get to know Rachel.”
“I’d like that too John. She’s hum…” Before she could finish her thought.
“I know.” He said grinning at Corey’s obvious discomfort. After all they never really talked much about personal stuff.
“Okay, we’ll be there about one?” Corey waited.
“Great, see you then.”
“John!” Corey hoped she caught him before he hung up. “Have them wash the car.”
“Being done as we speak.” He hung up the phone and chuckled to himself.
Corey was still holding the phone when Rachel came back into the room now dressed. “John wants us to come over for a BBQ. Seems he wants to get to know you better.” She looked at a surprised Rachel.
“Okay.” The smaller woman said taking the phone out of her companion’s hand and setting it back in the cradle. “I think I would like that too.”
Corey’s brain was on overload. “You…you would?”
“Sure honey, he’s important to you, so that makes him important to me. I know he’s your friend.” She shrugged. “A BBQ sounds fun.”
They pulled into the driveway a few minutes before one. Rachel got out spotting her medium blue Honda Accord sitting there. It was all clean and she could swear it had been polished. Corey walked up behind her. “Does it look the same?” She asked.
“Cleaner…but yeah.” She ran her hand over the hood as they continued up to the door. It pulled open before either of them could knock. “Hello Helen.” Corey said nodding at the middle-aged woman standing in the doorway. “This is Rachel…Rachel Woods.”
The woman held her hand out and felt a strong grip being returned. “It nice to meet you. Come on in. John’s out back getting the grill going.” She rolled her eyes. “He fancies himself the BBQ King. But then, I guess I shouldn’t complain since he’s cooking.”
They all laughed as they worked their way through the house to the back patio door. Corey slipped it open and she and Rachel stepped out. “Hello John.” Corey nodded at him.
“Ah…come on out here you two. Hello Rachel.” He greeted her with a smile.
“Hi John…thanks for having us.” She suddenly felt at a loss for words.
Lunch went well much to Corey’s delight and Rachel’s relief. Well…” Corey started to say while standing. “Guess we better get going.”
“Where are you going?” John asked. Knowing from a previous conversation neither woman wanted to start the cleanup of either her condo or Rachel’s apartment.
Corey thought about that for a long moment then looked at Rachel. “Vacation?” She asked raising a brow in question. “San Diego?” She continued watching the green eyes smile.
John and Helen chuckled and watched as the two of them disappeared into the kitchen then out the front door.
THE END FOR NOW. Corey and Rachel will return in The Survivor - Book 2 – Beginning where this one leaves off.